Jan. 26 (UPI) -- On this date in history:
In 1788, the first shipload of British convicts arrived in Australia. The establishment of an Australian prison colony was aimed at relieving overcrowding in British prisons.
In 1837, Michigan joined the United States as the 26th state.
In 1861, Louisiana seceded from the United States.
In 1875, the electric dental drill was patented by George Green of Kalamazoo, Mich.
In 1918, to promote food conservation during World War I, the U.S. government called for one meatless day, two wheatless days and two porkless days each week.
In 1950, India ceased to be a British dominion and became the Republic of India, the most populous democracy in the world.
In 1961, President John F. Kennedy named Dr. Janet Travell of New York City as his personal White House physician -- the first woman ever to be given such an assignment.
In 1988, The Phantom of the Opera opened on Broadway at the Majestic Theatre in New York.
In 1990, hurricane-force winds pounded the British Isles and much of Northern Europe, killing at least 92 people and knocking out power to nearly 1 million people.
In 1998, in response to allegations that he had an affair with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky, U.S. President Bill Clinton declared, "I did not have sexual relations with that woman."
In 2001, a magnitude-7.9 earthquake struck western India, killing more than 20,000 people, injuring tens of thousands and causing billions of dollars in damage.
In 2009, a 33-year-old single California mother, Nadya Suleman, who already had six children, gave birth to eight babies, only the second set of octuplets ever to be born alive in the United States. She became known as "Octomom."
In 2016, one of the occupiers in the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge standoff in Oregon, LaVoy Finicum, was fatally shot by state troopers during a confrontation at a roadblock. Officers said he was reaching for a gun when they fired on him.
In 2019, Naomi Osaka beat Petra Kvitova to win the Australian Open, becoming Asia's first No. 1 ranked player in tennis.
In 2020, Los Angeles Lakers icon Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna Bryant, were among nine killed in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, Calif.