What happened today, back in the day
1703 The greatest wind storm recorded in Great Britain, makes landfall, with wind gusts of up to 200kp/h. Some 9 000 people die. The Royal Navy loses 13 ships and 1 500 sailors.
1767 Wax modeller Marie Tussaud is born in Bern, Switzerland. She establishes Madame Tussaud’s waxworks in London in 1802.
1895 At the Battle at Amba Alagi, Abyssinia, the Ethiopians beat Italian armies.
1900 English social worker Emily Hobhouse sets sail for South Africa, to investigate conditions in British concentration camps.
1909 Inventor Leo Baekeland patents Bakelite, sparking the birth of the plastics industry.
1941 The US Naval base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, is attacked by 200 Japanese aircraft in a surprise raid that lasts just over one hour and leaves nearly 3 000 Americans dead. Eighteen ships were sunk or run aground, including five battleships. All of the Americans casualties were non-combatants, given the fact there was no state of war yet. In so doing the Japanese attempted to knock America out of a Pacific war before it started. Overshadowed by the aerial attack, Japan also launched midget submarines against the American stronghold. The attack was not without warning, or precedent and had the Americans heeded the warnings and warning signs, the attack, if not war, could have been prevented.
1949 Chinese nationalist leader Chiang Kai-shek and his government flee to Taiwan.
1963 Instant replay makes its debut during the Army-Navy football game in Philadelphia.
1972 Apollo 17, the last Apollo moon mission, is launched. The crew takes the photograph that becomes known as The Blue Marble.
1987 A Pacific Southwest Airlines passenger plane crashes near Paso Robles, in California, killing all 43 on board, after one of the passengers shoots his ex-boss and the pilots.
1995 One of the 20th Century’s major poets, Seamus Heaney wins the Nobel Prize for Literature.
2017 Unrest breaks out in the West Bank and Gaza, schools are closed and a general strike in response to America’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
2020 Coca-Cola is named as the world’s worst plastic polluter.
2022 Twenty-five right-wing extremists are arrested in Germany, suspected of organising a coup to overthrow the government and install a monarchy. Among the revolutionaries, Prince Heinrich XIII and army officers.