On This Day…

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1099– City of Jerusalem is captured and plundered by Christian forces during the First Crusade 

1381– John Ball, a leader in the Peasants’ Revolt, is hung, drawn and quartered in the presence of Richard II of England 

1410– Battle of Grunwald (First Battle of Tannenburg, Battle of Žalgiris), one of Medieval Europe’s largest battles during Poland-Lithuanian Teutonic War. Polish King Władysław Jagiełło and Lithuanian Grand Duke Vytautas defeat Teutonic Ulrich von Jungingen

1551– The Knights’ local governor, Gaspar de Vallier, negotiates a truce that ensures safe passage from Tunis to Malta for the Knights of the garrison, but excludes the Maltese, Calabrian and Rhodian soldiers, who are auctioned off into slavery by the Turks. 

1799– The Rosetta Stone is found in the Egyptian village of Rosetta by French Captain Pierre-François Bouchard during Napoleon’s Egyptian Campaign 

1914 – After some 10 years of work, the Panama Canal opened to ships. 

1947 – After three decades, the Indian independence movement, led by Mohandas Gandhi, achieved its goal on this day in 1947 as a free and independent India was established, ending nearly 200 years of British rule. 

1955– 18 Nobel laureates sign the Mainau Declaration against nuclear weapons, later co-signed by 34 more laureates 

1960 – The Republic of the Congo gained independence from France. 

2013 – Scientists at the Smithsonian announced the discovery of the olinguito, “the first carnivore species to be discovered in the American continents in 35 years”; the small arboreal animals live in the cloud forests of Colombia and Ecuador. 

1942– With the people of Malta near starvation after two years of virtually constant bombardment, Operation Pedestal brings the “Santa Marija Convoy” to Malta, saving the Islands from a planned surrender to the Axis powers. 

1969 – Woodstock Music & Art Fair opens in New York State on Max Yasgur’s Dairy Farm 

1988 – Omagh bombing in Northern Ireland, the worst terrorist incident of The Troubles, kills 29 people and injures about 220 

Film & TV:
1939 – “The Wizard of Oz”, American musical fantasy film directed by Victor Fleming and King Vidor, premieres at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, Hollywood, starring Judy Garland (Dorothy), Ray Bolger (Scarecrow), Jack Haley (Tin Man), Bert Lahr (Cowardly Lion), Frank Morgan (Wizard), Billie Burke (Glinda), and Margaret Hamilton 

1988 - “Die Hard” directed by John McTiernan and starring Bruce Willis and Alan Rickman is released in the US  

1972– “Honky Chateau” becomes Elton John’s first No. 1 album in the US, includes hit “Rocket Man” 

1978– British Open Men’s Golf, St Andrews: Jack Nicklaus completes 3rd career grand slam; wins by 2 strokes from Ben Crenshaw & Ray Floyd 

Via Britannica / On This Day 

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