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On This Day…

Reading Time: 2 minutes

1497 – Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama rounds Cape of Good Hope on way to first voyage from Europe to reach India

1926 – Imperial Conference ends, giving autonomy inside British Commonwealth

1935 – Flying boat “China Clipper” takes off from Alameda, California, carrying 100,000 pieces of mail on 1st trans-Pacific airmail flight

1963 – US President John F. Kennedy assassinated by Lee Harvey Oswald while riding in an open-topped motorcade in Dallas, Texas

1969 – Isolation of a single gene announced by scientists at Harvard University

1990 – Margaret Thatcher announced her resignation as British prime minister after a split occurred in the ranks of the Conservative Party.

1994 – Mount Merapi, on the island of Java, erupted, killing 64 people.

2004 – The Orange Revolution begins in Ukraine, resulting from the presidential elections

2005 – Angela Merkel becomes the first female Chancellor of Germany

2016 – US President Barack Obama posthumously awards the Presidential Medal of Freedom to pioneering computer scientist and Navy Admiral Grace Hopper

2017 – Uber admits hackers stole personal information affecting 57 million people worldwide and paid $100,00 to keep quiet

2017 – Vanellope Wilkins, born with her heart outside her body, is first UK baby to survive birth and operations to reinsert her heart

2018 – Leaning Tower of Pisa’s tilt reduced by 4 cm in 20 year project to stabilise it

2019 – Sacha Baron Cohen says if Facebook existed in the 1930s it would have run Hitler’s ads on his “solution to the Jewish problem”, in speech to Anti-Defamation League summit

Film & TV:

1995 – “Toy Story”, the first feature-length film created completely using computer-generated imagery, directed by John Lasseter and starring Tom Hanks and Tim Allen, is released


1955 – RCA Records make its best investment paying $35,000 to Sun Records for Elvis Presley’s contract


1910 – Arthur Knight patents steel shaft golf clubs

1986 – With a second-round knockout of Trevor Berbick, 20-year-old Mike Tyson became the youngest heavyweight champion in boxing history.

Via Britannica / On This Day

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