Today in history

Today in history

25 October 2020 (MIA)

285 (or 286) – Execution of Saints Crispin and Crispinian during the reign of Diocletian, now the patron saints of leather workers, curriers, and shoemakers.

473 – Emperor Leo I acclaims his grandson Leo II as Caesar of the Byzantine Empire.

1147 – Seljuk Turks defeat German crusaders under Conrad III at the Battle of Dorylaeum.

1147 – Reconquista: After a siege of four months, crusader knights led by Afonso Henriques reconquered Lisbon.

1415 – Hundred Years’ War: Henry V of England and his lightly armoured infantry and archers defeat the heavily armoured French cavalry in the Battle of Agincourt on Saint Crispin’s Day.

1616 – Dutch sea-captain Dirk Hartog makes second recorded landfall by a European on Australian soil, at the later-named Dirk Hartog Island off the West Australian coast.

1747 – British fleet under Admiral Sir Edward Hawke defeats the French at the Second Battle of Cape Finisterre.

1760 – George III becomes King of Great Britain.

1812 – War of 1812: The American frigate, USS United States, commanded by Stephen Decatur, captures the British frigate HMS Macedonian.

1822 – Greek War of Independence: The First Siege of Missolonghi begins.

1828 – St Katharine Docks open in London.

1854 – The Battle of Balaclava during the Crimean War (Charge of the Light Brigade).

1861 – The Toronto Stock Exchange is created.

1900 – The United Kingdom annexes the Transvaal.

1920 – After 74 days on hunger strike in Brixton Prison, England, the Sinn Féin Lord Mayor of Cork, Terence MacSwiney dies.

1924 – The Zinoviev letter, which Zinoviev himself denied writing, is published in the Daily Mail. The Labour party would later blame this letter for the Conservatives’ landslide election win.

1927 – The Italian luxury liner SS Principessa Mafalda sinks off the coast of Brazil, killing 314.

1938 – The Archbishop of Dubuque, Francis J. L. Beckman, denounces swing music as “a degenerated musical system … turned loose to gnaw away at the moral fiber of young people”, warning that it leads down a “primrose path to hell”. His warning is widely ignored.

1940 – Benjamin O. Davis, Sr. is named the first African American general in the United States Army.

1944 – Heinrich Himmler orders a crackdown on the Edelweiss Pirates, a loosely organized youth culture in Nazi Germany that had assisted army deserters and others to hide from the Third Reich.

1944 – The USS Tang under Richard O’Kane (the top American submarine captain of World War II) is sunk by the ship’s own malfunctioning torpedo.

1944 – The Romanian city of Carei is liberated by Romanian and Soviet forces from Nazi-Hungarian occupation.

1944 – World War II: Battle of Leyte Gulf: The largest naval battle in history, takes place in and around the Philippines between the Imperial Japanese Navy and the U.S. Third and U.S. Seventh Fleets. Afterward is the first Kamikaze attack of the war.

1945 – The Republic of China takes over administration of Taiwan following Japan’s surrender to the Allies.

1962 – Cuban Missile Crisis: Adlai Stevenson shows photos at a meeting of the United Nations Security Council proving that Soviet missiles are installed in Cuba.

1971 – The United Nations seats the People’s Republic of China and expels the Republic of China (see political status of Taiwan and China and the United Nations).

1977 – Digital Equipment Corporation releases OpenVMS V1.0.

1980 – Proceedings on the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction conclude at The Hague.

1983 – Operation Urgent Fury: The United States and its Caribbean allies invade Grenada, six days after Prime Minister Maurice Bishop and several of his supporters are executed in a coup d’état.

1995 – A commuter train slams into a school bus in Fox River Grove, Illinois, killing seven students.

1997 – After a brief civil war which has driven President Pascal Lissouba out of Brazzaville, Denis Sassou Nguesso proclaims himself the President of the Republic of the Congo.

2009 – The October 2009 Baghdad bombings kills 155 and wounds at least 721.

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