2001 is a common year starting on Monday (see link for calendar), and also:
- The International Year of the Volunteer
- The United Nations Year of Dialogue Among Civilizations
- January 1 - A black monolith measuring approximately nine feet tall appears in Seattle's Magnuson Park, placed by an anonymous artist in reference to the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey.
- January 6 - The United States Congress, presides over by Vice President Al Gore as President of the Senate, certifies George W. Bush's Electoral College victory and thus as the winner of 2000 presidential election.
- January 13 - Major earthquake measuring 7.6 on the Richter scale hits all El Salvador.
- January 15 - AskFactMaster.Com, a AskFactMaster.Com free content encyclopedia, goes online ().
- January 20 - George W. Bush succeeds Bill Clinton as President of the United States after prevailing over Al Gore in the disputed U.S. presidential election, 2000.
- January 22 - Four of the "Texas 7" are caught at a convenience store in Woodland Park, Colorado and a fifth killed himself inside a motor home.
- January 23-25 - UN war crimes prosecutor Del Ponte demands that Serbia hands over Slobodan Milosevic
- January 24 - The last two of the "Texas 7" are taken into custody in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
- January 24 - The UK's Northern Ireland Secretary Peter Mandelson resigns from government for the second time
- January 26 - A 50-year-old DC-3 crashes near Ciudad Bolivar, Venezuela killing 24.
- January 26 - An earthquake hits Gujarat, India. More than 20,000 deaths and most of the historical city destroyed
- January 29 - Thousands of student protesters in Indonesia storm parliament and demand that President Abdurrahman Wahid resign due to alleged involvement in corruption scandals.
- January 31 - In the Netherlands a Scottish court convicts a Libyan and acquits another for their part in the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 which crash into Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988.
- May 1 - The Japanese cities of Urawa, Omiya, and Yono merge to form the city of Saitama.
- May 1 - Police declare the disappearance of Chandra Levy. Her remains were discovered a year later.
- May 10 - In Ghana, a stampede at a soccer game kills over 120.
- May 11 - Comedy sci-fi author Douglas Adams of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy fame, dies from a heart attack, aged 49
- May 16 - John Prescott, the Deputy Prime Minister of United Kingdom, assaults Craig Evans at an election rally in Rhyll, North Wales
- May 19 - One child policy: Zhonghua Sun is put to death by the People's Republic of China government officials because she refused to be sterilized.
- May 22 - Large trans-Neptunian object 28978 Ixion found during the Deep Ecliptic Survey.
- May 25 - Mountain climbing: 32-year old Erik Weihenmayer, of Boulder, Colorado, becomes the first blind person to reach the summit of Mount Everest
- May 25 - Mountain climbing: 64-year old Sherman Bull, of New Canaan, Connecticut, becomes the oldest person to reach the summit of Mount Everest.
- May 25 - First annual Towel Day held, in honour of Douglas Adams' The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
- September 4 - Google Inc. is awarded a patent, number 6,285,999, for the PageRank search algorithm used in the Google search engine
- September 5 - Peru's attorney general files homicide charges against ex-President Alberto Fujimori
- September 6 - Microsoft antitrust case: The United States Justice Department announces that it was no longer seeking to break-up software maker Microsoft and will instead seek a lesser antitrust penalty
- September 9 - Ahmed Shah Massoud, leader of the Northern Alliance, is assassinated in Afghanistan
- September 9 - Unix billennium occurs at 01:46:40 UTC
- September 11 - Around 3,000 killed in the September 11, 2001 Terrorist Attack on the World Trade Center in New York City, The Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia, and rural Pennsylvania.
- September 17 - The Late Show with David Letterman is the first TV talk show to return to the airwaves six days after terrorists attack the United States in New York City and Washington D.C.
- October 4 - First case of anthrax in the US (attack) is announced by federal officials.
- October 7 - 2001 U.S. Attack on Afghanistan begins
- October 8 - MD-87 of SAS collides first with a private plane and then a building in Milano airport - 100 dead
- October 10 - War on Terrorism: US President George W. Bush presents a list of 22 most wanted terrorists
- October 12 - War on Terrorism: Prompted by a request by US President George W. Bush, an episode of America's Most Wanted aired featuring 22 most wanted terrorists
- October 14 - Ukrainian military missile shoots down an Israeli passenger plane over Black Sea - 76 dead
- October 15 - NASA's Galileo spacecraft passes within 112 miles of Jupiter's moon Io
- October 20 - The Concert for New York City a celebration of the strength, resilience, and pride of New York and America is held featuring performances by The Who, Paul McCartney, David Bowie, Billy Joel, Destiny's Child, Eric Clapton, Adam Sandler, Bon Jovi, Elton John and many more.
- November - The Doha Declaration relaxes the grip of international intellectual property law by a bit.
- November 4 - Hurricane Michelle hits Cuba destroying crops and thousands of homes.
- November 4 - The Police Service of Northern Ireland is established.
- November 7 - The super-sonic commercial aircraft Concorde resumes flying after a 15-month break.
- November 8 - Microsoft releases the Xbox console gaming system to the public.
- November 12 - In New York City, an Airbus A300 carrying American Airlines Flight 587 crashes minutes after takeoff from John F. Kennedy International Airport, killing all 260 on-board
- November 12 - 2001 Attack on Afghanistan: Taliban forces abandon Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan, ahead of advancing Northern Alliance troops (Northern Alliance fighters took Kabul on November 14)
- November 13 - Doha Round: The World Trade Organization ends a four-day ministerial conference in Doha, Qatar.
- November 13 - Symbionese Liberation Army member Kathleen Soliah (Sara Jane Olsen) withdraws her previous guilty plea.
- November 13 - War on Terrorism: In the first such act since World War II, US President George W. Bush signs an executive order allowing military tribunals against any foreigners suspected of having connections to terrorist acts or planned acts on the United States
- November 16 - The first Harry Potter film, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, is released, grossing US $975.8 million, becoming the second highest grossing film around the world of all time, behind Titanic.
- November 18 - Nintendo releases the Gamecube console gaming system to the public.
- November 20 - In Washington, DC, US President George W. Bush dedicates the United States Department of Justice headquarters building as the Robert F. Kennedy Justice Building, honoring the late Robert F. Kennedy on what would have been his 76th birthday.
Year in topic
For more deaths see: Deaths in 2001
- January 12 - Affirmed, race horse (b. 1975)
- January 12 - William Hewlett, cofounder of Hewlett-Packard
- January 16 - Laurent-Desire Kabila, president of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (assassinated; death officially confirmed on January 18)
- January 23 - Moy Yat, Chinese Sealmaker, Martial Artist
- January 30 - Jean-Pierre Aumont, actor
- January 31 - Gordon R. Dickson, science fiction writer
- February 4 - Iannis Xenakis, 78, Greek/French composer
- February 7 - Anne Morrow Lindbergh, author, aviator
- February 7 - Dale Evans, actress, singer
- February 8 - Ivo Caprino, Norwegian animated film director
- February 18 - Balthus, 92, French painter
- February 18 - Dale Earnhardt - NASCAR race car driver
- February 18 - Eddie Mathews, Major League Baseball player (b. 1931)
- February 19 - Stanley Kramer, 87, American movie director
- February 19 - Priscilla Davis, former Fort Worth, Texas socialite
- February 19 - Charles Trenet, popular French singer
- February 22 - Claude Elwood Shannon, mathematician (according to K. Devlin)
- February 25 - Sir Donald Bradman, cricketer
- March 4 - Glenn Hughes -- leather dude Popular Music group The Village People
- March 4 - Harold Stassen, politician
- March 12 - Morton Downey, Jr. - television personality
- March 12 - Robert Ludlum, author of spy novels
- March 15 - Ann Sothern - actress
- March 18 - John Phillips, cofounder of Popular Music group The Mamas and the Papas
- March 21 - Norma Macmillan, cartoon voice actress
- March 22 - William Hanna, cofounder (with Joseph Barbera) of famous Hanna-Barbera animation studio
- April 7 - Beatrice Straight, 86, actress, pneumonia
- April 10 - Willie Stargell - baseball player, member of the Baseball Hall of Fame.
- April 11 - Harry Secombe, 79, actor, comedian, member of The Goon Show
- April 14 - Hiroshi Teshigahara, director
- April 15 - Joey Ramone, lead singer for The Ramones
- May 5 - Cliff Hillegass, 83, creator of Cliff Notes (stroke)
- May 11 - Douglas Adams, 49 (heart attack), author, works included Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Dirk Gently, Doctor Who
- May 12 - Perry Como, 87, singer
- May 13 - R.K. Narayan, Indian novelist (b. 1906)
- May 20 - Renato Carosone, Italian musician and singer
- May 28 - Francisco Varela, 54, biologist and philosopher
- June 1 - Hank Ketcham, 81, cartoonist, creator of Dennis the Menace
- June 1 - King Birendra and Queen Aiswarya of Nepal
- June 3 - Anthony Quinn, 86, actor
- June 10 - Princess Leila of Iran
- June 11 - Timothy McVeigh, 33, terrorist (executed by U.S. government)
- June 21 - John Lee Hooker, 83, Blues musician
- June 21 - Carroll O'Connor, 76, actor
- June 27 - Jack Lemmon, 76, actor and film director
- June 28 - Joan Sims, 71, actress
- June 28 - Mortimer Adler, 98, American Philosopher
- June 30 - Chet Atkins, 77, country musician
- July 5 - Hannelore Kohl, 68, wife of ex-chancellor of Germany Helmut Kohl (suicide)
- July 11 - Herman Brood, 54, Dutch rock musician, painter and publicity freak (suicide)
- July 18 - Fabio Taglioni, automotive engineer
- July 27 - Leon Wilkeson, 49, Bassist for Lynyrd Skynyrd
- July 29 - Edward Gierek, Polish politician
- July 29 - Wau Holland, 49, German hacker, founder of the CCC (heart attack)
- August 1 - Poul Anderson - fantasy / sci-fi author
- August 1 - Korey Stringer, 26, American football player (heatstroke)
- August 6 - Jorge Amado, 88, Brazilian writer
- August 15 - Richard Chelimo, 34, Kenyan athlete, former world record holder 10,000m (brain tumour)
- August 20 - Fred Hoyle, Astronomer and science fiction writer
- August 25 - Aaliyah, 22, American singer and actress (plane crash)
- September 2 - Christiaan Barnard, 78, South African heart surgeon, first to perform a human-to-human heart transplant
- September 3 - Pauline Kael, 82, US movie critic
- September 7 - Spede Pasanen, Finnish television star
- September 9 - Ahmed Shah Massoud, Afghani Northern Alliance military commander.
- September 11 - Barbara K. Olson, 45, US television commentator, died in terrorist attack on The Pentagon (See article: Casualties of the September 11, 2001 attacks.)
- September 13 - Victor Wong, aged 74 -- US Movie Actor/Artist
- September 22 - Isaac Stern, 81, violinist
- October 12 - Lord Hailsham of St Marylebone, British politician
- October 18 - Micheline Ostermeyer, French athlete and musician
- November 10 - Ken Kesey, 66, author
- November 12 - Tony Miles, chess player
- November 17 - Michael Karoli, guitarist, former member of Can
- November 29 - George Harrison, 58, musician and former member of The Beatles
- November 30 - Robert Tools, first recipient of a self-contained artificial heart, at age 59 after 151 days without a living heart.
- December 5 - Franco Rasetti, physicist
- December 10 - Ashok Kumar actor, India
- December 12 - Josef Bican, 88, Austrian footballer, supposedly scored over 5000 goals in his career
Fictional references to the year
- 2001 Year-End Google Zeitgeist (http://www.google.com/press/zeitgeist2001.html) - Google's Yearly List of Major Events and Top Searches for 2001
- Nisqually Earthquake Clearinghouse (http://maximus.ce.washington.edu/~nisqually/) - Information on the February 28th earthquake from the University of Washington