July 1st

2013
Croatia became the 28th member of the European Union.
2013 enlargement of the European Union
2002
The International Criminal Court (ICC) is established. It is the first international judicial body that has the power to try individuals for genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes. It was created by the Rome Statute, an international treaty that was signed in the Italian city of Rome in 1998.
International Criminal Court
2000
Vermont's civil unions law went into effect.
Same-sex marriage in Vermont
1997
United Kingdom returns Hong Kong and the New Territories to the People's Republic of China.
Transfer of sovereignty over Hong Kong
1994
Yasir Arafat returned to Palestinian land after 27 years in exile.
Yasser Arafat
1991
The Warsaw Pact, a defense treaty between 8 communist countries, is formally disbanded in Prague. The pact was founded in 1955, during the height of the Cold War, as a way to counterbalance the power of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in Western Europe.
Warsaw Pact
1979
The Walkman makes its appearance in stores for the first time. The portable audio cassette player was made by Sony and went on sale in Japan.
Walkman
1968
The United States, Britain, the Soviet Union, and 58 other nations signed the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.
Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons
1963
The U.S. Post Office inaugurated its five-digit ZIP (Zone Improvement Plan) codes.
Elizabeth, New Jersey
1962
Burundi and Rwanda achieved independence.
History of Rwanda
1943
Income tax withholding began in the United States.
Tax withholding in the United States
1921
The Communist Party of China is founded and Chen Duxiu elected its leader.
Communist Party of China
1916
First day of the Battle of the Somme: the British Army suffers its worst day, losing 19,240 men (WWI).
First day on the Somme
1908
SOS is adopted as the International Distress Signal. The 2nd International Radiotelegraphic Convention, which was signed in December 1906, made the Morse code distress signal (· · · – – – · · ·), the standard international maritime distress signal. Even though it was replaced by the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System in 1999, SOS is universally seen as a distress call and is often mistakenly thought to be an abbreviation of Save Our Souls or Save Our Ship.
SOS
1903
The Tour de France Bicycle Race is flagged off for the first time. The now annual multi-leg bike race lasted for 20 days with a course that stretched about 1,500 miles. The race was first created by the sports daily, L'Auto , as a way to boost its circulation. The first Tour de France was win by Italian-French racer, Maurice Garin.
Glossary of cycling
1898
Theodore Roosevelt and his Rough Riders fought the battle of San Juan Hill in the Spanish-American War.
Battle of San Juan Hill
1867
The Dominion of Canada is formed, comprising the provinces of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario & Quebec, with John A. Macdonald serving as the first Prime Minister.
Constitution Act, 1867
1863
The Battle of Gettysburg, which marked the turning point in the Civil War, began.
Battle of Gettysburg
1858
The joint reading of Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace's papers on evolution to the Linnean Society.
Publication of Darwin's theory
1689
Matsuo Basho, zen poet, leaves for 150 days journey on Honshu Japan.
Matsuo Bashō