This Day In History : May 6

1937 United States

Hindenburg Disaster (1937)

On May 6, 1937, the German passenger airship LZ 129 Hindenburg caught fire and was destroyed during its attempt to dock with its mooring mast at Naval Air Station Lakehurst in Manchester Township, New Jersey, United States. The disaster resulted in the deaths of 36 people and marked the end of the era of passenger-carrying airships.

Also on This Day in History May 6

Discover what happened on May 6 with HISTORY's summaries of major events, anniversaries,
famous births and notable deaths.

Births on This Day, May 6
  • 1895 Rudolph Valentino

    Italian actor and silent movie idol (The Sheik, Eagle), born in Castellaneta, Italy

  • 1918 Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan

    1st President of the United Arab Emirates, born in Al Ain, Abu Dhabi, birth date disputed

  • 1941 Fred James Eckert

    American politician

  • 1946 Susan Brown

    English actress

  • 1953 Tony Blair

    British Prime Minister

Deaths on This Day, May 6
  • 1859 Alexander von Humboldt

    German naturalist and explorer (Kosmos)

  • 1910 Edward VII

    King of England

  • 1952 Maria Montessori

    Italian physician/educationist

  • 1989 Earl Blaik

    American College Football coach

  • 1862 Henry David Thoreau

    American naturalist and pacifist (Walden Pond)


Battle of Edington

At the Battle of Edington, an army of the kingdom of Wessex under Alfred the Great defeated the Great Heathen Army led by the Dane Guthrum on a date between 6 and 12 May 878, resulting in the Treaty of Wedmore later the same year.

US President Eisenhower signs Civil Rights Act of 1960

The Civil Rights Act of 1960 was signed into law by President Dwight D. Eisenhower on May 6, 1960. This act did not introduce a new law but was aimed at strengthening and covering loopholes in the Civil Rights Act of 1957.

17th NASA Space Shuttle Mission (51-B): Challenger 7 lands at Edwards AFB

The 17th NASA Space Shuttle Mission (STS-51B), also known as Challenger 7, took place 39 years ago. It was the seventh flight of the Space Shuttle Challenger.

Italian government of Antonio Segni resigns

Antonio Segni, fourth President of the Italian Republic, resigned this evening because of ill health. He suffered a cerebral stroke Aug. 7 and his condition was critical for several weeks afterward.
Special day
Discover invention