On January 12th, 2010, at 4:53 PM local time, an earthquake of 7.0 magnitude hit 25km southwest of the Haitian capital, Port-au-Prince. Haiti had not been hit by an earthquake of such enormity since the 18th century.

Several aftershocks ensued in the following days at magnitudes of 5.9 and 5.5. Even though the exact number of victims is unknown, Haitian authorities put the official death toll at 300,000, making the event one of the worst natural disasters in recorded history.

Other notable events on January 12th:

In 1969, Led Zeppelin release their debut album entitled “Led Zeppelin”.

In 1908,  the first long-distance radio message is broadcast from the Eiffel Tower in Paris, which was heard by an audience of 50.