Sisely Dowling

Sisely Dowling

Modified & Updated: 07 Sep 2023


History is a treasure trove of fascinating events, significant milestones, and remarkable achievements. Each day has its own share of noteworthy occurrences that have shaped the world we live in. May 14th is no exception. On this day, throughout history, momentous events have taken place, leaving an indelible mark on various aspects of human civilization.

From scientific breakthroughs to political developments, cultural milestones to sporting triumphs, May 14th has witnessed numerous happenings that have influenced the course of history. Exploring the events that unfolded on this date offers us a glimpse into the diverse tapestry of human endeavors and the interconnectedness of our collective past.

In this article, we will delve into the captivating facts and significant events that happened on May 14th throughout history. So, join us as we take a journey through time and discover the rich tapestry of May 14th’s historical significance.

Table of Contents


  • 1948: The independent state of Israel is proclaimed as British rule in Palestine comes to an end.
  • 1804: The Lewis and Clark expedition departs from the Camp Dubois, initiating their journey to explore the western territories of the United States.
  • 1607: English colonists establish the Jamestown settlement in Virginia, the first permanent English settlement in the Americas.
  • 1940: The Netherlands surrenders to German forces during World War II.
  • 1878: The last witch trial in Germany takes place in the city of Ellwangen.


  • 1796: Edward Jenner administers the first successful smallpox vaccination using cowpox material.
  • 1904: The Olympic Games introduce the sport of ice hockey as a demonstration event.
  • 1943: Dr. Albert Hofmann discovers the psychedelic effects of LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) while experimenting with the substance for the first time.
  • 1948: The first synthesis of cortisone, a hormone that plays a crucial role in the body’s stress response, is achieved by Dr. Percy Julian and his team.
  • 1992: The USS Endeavour captures the first detailed images of asteroid 253 Mathilde during a flyby, providing valuable insights into the composition and structure of asteroids.


  • 1948: The state of Israel receives official recognition by the United States, cementing its status as a sovereign nation.
  • 1871: The Treaty of Frankfurt is signed, ending the Franco-Prussian War and resulting in the unification of Germany under Prussian leadership.
  • 1961: Civil rights activists, known as the Freedom Riders, begin a series of bus trips through the American South to challenge segregation in interstate transportation.
  • 1988: Soviet troops begin their withdrawal from Afghanistan, marking the end of a nearly decade-long conflict.
  • 1949: The Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) is established, with Konrad Adenauer becoming its first Chancellor.


  • 1998: Frank Sinatra, one of the most influential and iconic singers of the 20th century, passes away at the age of 82.
  • 1928: Mickey Mouse makes his first appearance in the animated short film “Plane Crazy,” though it is not released until later.
  • 1973: The iconic science fiction film “Star Wars” is released, eventually becoming a global phenomenon and spawning a hugely successful franchise.
  • 1984: The comedy television show “The Cosby Show” concludes its run after eight seasons, leaving a lasting impact on the portrayal of African American families in mainstream media.
  • 1771: Composer and pianist Johann Nepomuk Hummel, who played a significant role in the transition from the Classical to the Romantic period of music, is born.


  • 1984: Mark Zuckerberg, American internet entrepreneur and co-founder of Facebook, is born.
  • 1944: George Lucas, American filmmaker and creator of the “Star Wars” and “Indiana Jones” franchises, is born.
  • 1944: Sir Tim Rice, British lyricist known for his collaborations with Andrew Lloyd Webber on musicals such as “Jesus Christ Superstar” and “Evita,” is born.
  • 1973: Natalie Appleton, Canadian singer-songwriter and member of the girl group All Saints, is born.
  • 1943: Jack Bruce, Scottish musician and songwriter best known as the bassist and vocalist of the rock band Cream, is born.


  • 2015: B.B. King, legendary American blues guitarist and singer, passes away at the age of 89.
  • 1940: Emma Goldman, Lithuanian-born American anarchist and feminist activist, dies at the age of 70.
  • 1855: Sir William Edward Parry, British rear admiral and Arctic explorer, dies at the age of 64.
  • 1610: Matteo Ricci, Italian Jesuit missionary and one of the first Western scholars to be admitted to the imperial court of China, passes away at the age of 57.
  • 1505: Catherine of Siena, Italian mystic, philosopher, and theologian, dies at the age of 33.


May 14th bears witness to a rich tapestry of historical, scientific, political, cultural, and personal events. From the proclamation of the independent state of Israel to the establishment of the Jamestown settlement, this date marks pivotal moments in various realms of human endeavor. Scientific breakthroughs, such as the discovery of LSD’s psychedelic effects and the synthesis of cortisone, have shaped our understanding of the world. Political milestones, like the end of the Franco-Prussian War and Soviet troops withdrawing from Afghanistan, have reshaped the geopolitical landscape. Cultural events, including the birth of Mickey Mouse and the release of “Star Wars,” continue to captivate audiences. The births of influential figures like Mark Zuckerberg and the deaths of notable individuals like B.B. King add depth to the significance of this date in history.


Q: What were some major historical events that occurred on May 14th?

A: Some major historical events that occurred on May 14th include the proclamation of the independent state of Israel, the establishment of the Jamestown settlement, and the signing of the Treaty of Frankfurt.

Q: Were there any significant scientific breakthroughs on May 14th?

A: Absolutely! On May 14th, Edward Jenner administered the first successful smallpox vaccination, and Dr. Albert Hofmann discovered the psychedelic effects of LSD.

Q: Which notable individuals were born on May 14th?

A: Some notable individuals born on May 14th include Mark Zuckerberg, George Lucas, and Sir Tim Rice.

Q: Who are some famous personalities who passed away on May 14th?

A: B.B. King, Emma Goldman, and Matteo Ricci are among the famous personalities who passed away on May 14th.

Q: What cultural events took place on May 14th?

A: Cultural events on May 14th include the release of the iconic film “Star Wars” and the birth of the legendary singer and songwriter Frank Sinatra.