Several years back, when I was a mod in a chat-room-based quiz club, I was responsible for the upkeep of the scores page. It fell upon me, as the only one with any clue about html and so forth, to try to make the page a bit more interesting than just a bunch of tables with names and numbers in 'em. One of the things I did to try to liven things up a bit, and given that quizzers tend to be, by nature, trivia buffs, was to run a little java-script driven ticker-tape style widget which portrayed scrolling messages in the title-bar of the page, in which I'd insert, every morning, a few trivia items gleaned, mostly, from Wikipedia's "on this day" feature.
Though the need disappeared along with the quiz club, as chat-rooms went out of style and posting inane messages on Facebook came in, I still—being a trivia buff—take a look at that page, now and again when the mood takes me. And it's quite odd. You'd think that over the years momentous and iconic events would kind of average out, making no particular day stand out as more interesting, historically, than any other. Not so, Gentle Reader, not so! Some days, I can report from experience, are definitely more momentous and/or iconic than others. By a very long chalk indeed! And this day—July 6th—is one of the former.
I present this list, excerpted from the linked Wikipedia page, with no comment from myself.
- 1189 – Richard I "the Lionheart" acceded to the English throne.
- 1483 – Richard III was crowned King of England.
- 1535 – Sir Thomas More was executed for treason against King Henry VIII of England.
- 1560 – The Treaty of Edinburgh (Treaty of Leith) was signed, at least theoretically uniting Scotland and England.
- 1785 – The dollar was unanimously chosen as the monetary unit for the United States.
- 1854 – In Jackson, Michigan, the first convention of the United States Republican Party was held.
- 1885 – Louis Pasteur successfully tested his vaccine against rabies on Joseph Meister, a boy who was bitten by a rabid dog.
- 1887 – David Kalakaua, monarch of the Kingdom of Hawaii, was forced at gunpoint by Americans to sign the Bayonet Constitution giving Americans more power in Hawaii while stripping Hawaiian citizens of their rights.
- 1892 – Dadabhai Naoroji was elected as the first Indian Member of Parliament in Britain.
- 1892 – 3,800 striking steelworkers engaged in a day-long battle with Pinkerton agents during the Homestead Strike, leaving 10 dead and dozens wounded.
- 1917 – World War I: Arabian troops led by T. E. Lawrence ("Lawrence of Arabia") and Auda ibu Tayi captured Aqaba from the Ottoman Empire during the Arab Revolt.
- 1919 – The British dirigible R34 landed in New York, completing the first crossing of the Atlantic Ocean by an airship.
- 1933 – The first Major League Baseball All-Star Game was played in Chicago's Comiskey Park. The American League defeated the National League 4–2.
- 1939 – Holocaust: the last remaining Jewish enterprises in Germany were closed.
- 1942 – Anne Frank and her family went into hiding in the "Secret Annexe" above her father's office in an Amsterdam warehouse.
- 1944 – Jackie Robinson refused to move to the back of a bus, leading to a court martial.
- 1947 – The AK-47 went into production in the Soviet Union.
- 1957 – Althea Gibson won the Wimbledon championships, becoming the first black athlete to do so.
- 1957 – John Lennon and Paul McCartney of the Beatles were introduced to each other when Lennon's band the Quarrymen performed at the St. Peter's Church Hall fête in Woolton.
- 1962 – The Late Late Show, the world's longest-running chat show by the same broadcaster, aired on RTÉ One for the first time.
- 1967 – Nigerian Civil War: Nigerian forces invaded Biafra, beginning the war.
- 1988 – The Piper Alpha drilling platform in the North Sea was destroyed by explosions and fires. 167 oil workers were killed, making it the world's worst offshore oil disaster in terms of direct loss of life.
- 1995 – In the Bosnian War, under the command of General Ratko Mladić, Serbia began its attack on the Bosnian town of Srebrenica, and killed more than 8000 Bosniaks, in what then- UN Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali called "the worst crime on European soil since the Second World War".
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