- 116 – Emperor Trajan sends laureatae to the Roman Senate at Rome on account of his victories and conquest of Parthia.
- 1270 – Grand Duchy of Lithuania defeats the Livonian Order in the Battle of Karuse.
- 1630 – Dutch forces led by Hendrick Lonck capture Olinda in what was to become part of Dutch Brazil.
- 1646 – Battle of Torrington, Devon: The last major battle of the first English Civil War.
- 1796 – Colombo in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) falls to the British, completing their invasion of Ceylon.
- 1804 – First Barbary War: Stephen Decatur leads a raid to burn the pirate-held frigate USS Philadelphia.
- 1862 – American Civil War: General Ulysses S. Grant captures Fort Donelson, Tennessee.
- 1866 – Spencer Compton Cavendish, Marquess of Hartington becomes British Secretary of State for War.
- 1934 – The Austrian Civil War ends with the defeat of the Social Democrats and the Republikanischer Schutzbund.
- 1940 – World War II: Altmark Incident: The German tanker Altmark is boarded by sailors from the British destroyer HMS Cossack. 299 British prisoners are freed.
- 1943 – World War II: In the early phases of the Third Battle of Kharkov, Red Army troops re-enter the city.
- 1945 – World War II: American forces land on Corregidor Island in the Philippines.
- 1959 – Fidel Castro becomes Premier of Cuba after dictator Fulgencio Batista was overthrown on 01 January.
- 1960 – The U.S. Navy submarine USS Triton begins Operation Sandblast, setting sail from New London, Connecticut, to begin the first submerged circumnavigation of the globe.
- 1991 – Nicaraguan Contras leader Enrique Bermúdez is assassinated in Managua.
- 2006 – The last Mobile army surgical hospital (MASH) is decommissioned by the United States Army.
- 1519 – Gaspard II de Coligny, French admiral (d. 1572).
- 1761 – Jean-Charles Pichegru, French general (d. 1804).
- 1812 – Henry Wilson, American colonel and politician, 18th Vice President of the United States (d. 1875).
- 1905 – Henrietta Barnett, British Women’s Royal Air Force officer (d. 1985).
- 1920 – Anna Mae Hays, American general (d. 2018).
- 1922 – Heinz-Wolfgang Schnaufer, German soldier and pilot (d. 1950).
- 1926 – Margot Frank, German-Dutch holocaust victim (d. 1945).
- 1935 – Bradford Parkinson, American colonel and engineer.
- 1941 – Kim Jong-il, North Korean commander and politician, 2nd Supreme Leader of North Korea (d. 2011).
- 549 – Zhu Yi, Chinese general (b. 483).
- 1645 – Gonzalo Fernández de Córdoba, Spanish general and politician, 24th Governor of the Duchy of Milan (b. 1585).
- 1820 – Georg Carl von Döbeln, Swedish general (b. 1758).
- 1984 – M. A. G. Osmani, Bangladeshi general (b. 1918).
- 1991 – Enrique Bermúdez, Nicaraguan lieutenant and engineer (b. 1932).