May 2 is the 122nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (123rd in leap years). There are 243 days remaining.

  1. 1194 - King Richard I of England gives Portsmouth its first Royal Charter.
  2. 1335 - Otto the Merry, Duke of Austria, becomes Duke of Carinthia.
  3. 1568 - Mary I of Scotland escapes from Loch Leven Castle, where she had been imprisoned by Sir William Douglas.
  4. 1670 - King Charles II of England grants a permanent charter to the Hudson's Bay Company to open up the fur trade in North America.
  5. 1672 - John Maitland becomes Duke of Lauderdale and Earl of March.
  6. 1808 - Peninsular War: The people of Madrid rise up in rebellion against French occupation.
  7. 1816 - Léopold of Saxe-Coburg and Charlotte Augusta are wed.
  8. 1829 - After anchoring nearby, Captain Charles Fremantle of HMS Challenger, declares the Swan River Colony in Australia.
  9. 1863 - American Civil War: Stonewall Jackson is wounded by friendly fire while returning to camp after reconnoitering for the Battle of Chancellorsville. He succumbs to pneumonia 8 days later.
  10. 1866 - Peruvian defenders fight off Spanish fleet at the Battle of Callao.
  11. 1885 - Good Housekeeping magazine goes on sale for the first time.
  12. 1885 - Cree and Assiniboine warriors won the Battle of Cut Knife, their largest victory over Canadian forces during the North-West Rebellion.
  13. 1885 - The Congo Free State is established by King Léopold II of Belgium.
  14. 1889 - Menelik II, Emperor of Ethiopia, signs a treaty of amity with Italy, which gives Italy control over Eritrea.
  15. 1900 - Oscar II, King of Sweden, declares support for Britain at the time of the Second Boer War.
  16. 1918 - General Motors acquires the Chevrolet Motor Company of Delaware.
  17. 1920 - The first game of the Negro National League baseball is played in Indianapolis, Indiana.
  18. 1932 - Comedian Jack Benny's radio show airs for the first time.
  19. 1933 - The first modern sighting of the Loch Ness monster is reported.
  20. 1933 - Gleichschaltung: Adolf Hitler bans trade unions.
  21. 1939 - Lou Gehrig's streak of 2130 consecutive Major League Baseball games played comes to an end. The record will stand for 56 years before Cal Ripken, Jr. breaks it.
  22. 1945 - World War II: Fall of Berlin – The Soviet Union announces the capture of Berlin and Soviet soldiers hoist their red flag over the Reichstag building. German forces surrender in Italy. German forces surrender to the New Zealand Army in Trieste.
  23. 1946 - "Battle of Alcatraz" - Alcatraz Federal prison, San Francisco is taken over by six inmates following failed escape attempt
  24. 1953 - Hussein is crowned King of Jordan.
  25. 1955 - Tennessee Williams wins the Pulitzer Prize for Drama for Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.
  26. 1963 - Berthold Seliger launches near Cuxhaven a rocket with three stages with a maximum flight altitude of more than 100 kilometres. It is the only sounding rocket developed in Germany.
  27. 1964 - Vietnam War: An explosion sinks the USS Card while docked at Saigon. Viet Cong forces are suspected of placing a bomb on the ship.
  28. 1969 - The British ocean liner Queen Elizabeth 2 departs on her maiden voyage to New York City.
  29. 1972 - Buddy Baker became the first stock car driver to finish a 500-mile race in less than three hours en route to winning the Winston Select 500 at the Alabama International Motor Speedway in Talladega, Alabama.
  30. 1982 - Falklands War: The British nuclear submarine HMS Conqueror sinks the Argentine cruiser ARA General Belgrano.
  31. 1986 - The 1986 World Exposition in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, opens.
  32. 1997 - The Labour Party's Tony Blair becomes Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, ending 18 years of Conservative Party rule. At 44, he is the youngest prime minister for 185 years.
  33. 1998 - The European Central Bank is founded in Brussels in order to define and execute the EU's monetary policy.
  34. 1999 - Panamanian election: Mireya Moscoso became the first woman to be elected President of Panama.
  35. 2000 - Bill Clinton announces that GPS access equivalent to the U.S. military would be available for regular citizens.
  36. 2000 - Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet of the Netherlands unveiled the Man With Two Hats monument in Ottawa on May 11, 2002, and the other in Apeldoorn on May 2, 2000. Symbolically linking both Netherlands and Canada for their assistance throughout the Second World War.
  37. 2005 - Airwork Flight 23 crashes after structural failure.
  38. 2005 - The Pontiac Grand Am ceases production at the 100 year-old Lansing M plant.