On this day:

1949 Mao Zedong declared the establishment of the People’s Republic of China.

1957 Thalidomide, an anti-nausea drug and sleep-aid, was launched, before being being banned for causing birth defects.

1961 British Cameroon or Southern Cameroon joined the Republic of Cameroon to form the Federal Republic of Cameroon.

Born on this day:

1924 Jimmy Carter, 39th President of the United States, Nobel Prize laureate

Gone on this day:

2012 Eric Hobsbawm, Egyptian/English historian, author