History: July 21

July 21

1403 Henry IV defeats the Percys in the Battle of Shrewsbury in England.

1588 The English fleet defeats the Spanish armada.

1667 The Peace of Breda ends the Second Anglo-Dutch War and cedes Dutch New Amsterdam to the English.

1711 Russia and Turkey sign the Treaty of Pruth, ending the year-long Russo-Turkish War.

1733 John Winthrop is granted the first honorary Doctor of Law Degree in the new world by Harvard College in Cambridge, MA.

1773 Pope Clement XIV issues the brief, 'Dominus ac redemptor noster,' officially dissolving the Society of Jesus (Jesuits). This politically-based suppression will leave conspicuous gaps in Catholic education and foreign missions.

1798 Battle of the Pyramids: After landing and capturing Alexandria in early July, Napoleon advanced towards Cairo and within sight of the Pyramids. With the Egyptian capital only four miles away, he fought his first major battle against the Mamelukes; a clash between a modern European Army and a medieval Middle Eastern Army. Although heavily outnumbered, Napoleon realized that the only Egyptian troops of any worth on the battlefield were their cavalry, so he arranged his forces in large divisional 'Squares' with the front and rear made up of a demi brigade each (six ranks deep) and the third Demi Brigade of the division making up the two sides of the square. Cavalry and baggage hid within these squares. The French Squares repelled the Mameluke horsemen with artillery fire supporting, French infantry then drove the disorganized Egyptian infantry (Fellahin) away killing several thousand after about an hours fighting. The French losses amounted to about 300 while estimated Egyptian losses were around 4,000-6,000. Seeing the defeat of the Mameluke horse by the French a larger Mameluke army waiting in Cairo dispersed into the desert leaving the capital open to the victorious Napoleon.

1804 Birth: Victor Schoelcher, in Guadeloupe, abolished french slavery.

1831 Belgium becomes independent as Leopold I is proclaimed King of the Belgians.

1846 Mormons found the first English settlement in California at San Joaquin Valley.

1861 US Civil War: The first major battle between the North and the South, The Battle of Bull Run Creek at Manassas Junction, Virginia, is fought this day. US Federal troops under the leadership of Major General Irwin McDowell attack Confederate troops led by General Beauregard. The Confederates, with the help of General E. Kirby Smith and General Thomas 'Stonewall' Jackson hold back the Union troops. Many folks, dressed in their Sunday best, came to watch and picnic as 60,000 men fought for over ten hours.

1865 Wild Bill Hickok kills gunman Dave Tutt in Springfield, Illinois, in the first formal quick-draw duel.

1873 Jesse James and his gang pull off the first train robbery in the US, as they take $3,000 from the Rock Island Express at Adair, IA.

1898 Manifesting Destiny: Spain cedes Guam to the US.

1899 Birth: Ernest Hemingway. Born this day, Ernest Hemingway, Pulitzer Prize and Nobel Prize-winning writer.

1904 The Trans-Siberian railway is finally completed. The 4,607 miles of track took 13 years to lay.

1906 The Dreyfus case concludes as Frenchman Alfred Dreyfus is declared innocent of espionage charges, a conviction for which he served 10 years in prison. It is believed that Dreyfus, a Jew, was wrongly convicted because of anti-Semitism and to protect the identity of the real culprits.

1911 Birth: Marshall [Herbert] McLuhan, in Canada, professor, writer, communication theorist. (Understanding Media, The Medium is the Message). Died in 1980.

1915 President Woodrow 'And This Time I Mean It' Wilson sends a third Lusitania note to the Germans. It warns that any future infringement of American rights will be deemed "deliberately unfriendly." (Schlesinger I)

1919 The British House of Lords ratifies the Versailles Treaty.

1921 Military Intelligence and Other Oxymoron's: General William "Billy" MItchell orchestrates the sinking of the German battleship Ostfriesland in a demonstration of concentrated bombing. He is convinced of the superiority of air power over sea power, but most of his peers are not. Note: Mitchel drew the ire of the top brass in the US military by insisting that such strategic assets as Pearl Harbor were vulnerable to air strikes, a position that led to his dismissal. Ultimately, he will be exonerated and recommissioned.

1925 Church and State: Following a sensational 12-day trial, the so-called 'Monkey Trial' in Dayton, Tennessee, pitting Clarence Darrow against William Jennnings Bryan in one of the great confrontations in legal history, ends with John Thomas Scopes convicted of teaching evolution in violation of state law. He is fined $100, but the conviction is later overturned.

1930 The Veterans' Administration of the United States is officialy established.

1933 Holocaust: The SA arrests 300 Jewish store owners in Nuremberg and parades them through the streets for hours.

1933 The Board of the Federation of Synagogues in London votes to endorse the anti-Nazi boycott.

1936 Members of the Peel Committee (British Royal Committee on Palestine) are named.

1940 WW2: Lithuania, Estonia, and Latvia are annexed by the Soviet Union.

1940 WW2: Hitler tells the Military High Command that Germany must prepare to attack the Soviet Union.

1941 Holocaust: Majdanek (Maidanek) concentration camp is established.

1941 Those Vichy French: France accepts Japan's demand for military control of Indochina.

1944 The Bomb Plot: Hundreds of suspected plotters in the assassination attempt, and their families, are arrested throughout Europe. Within two months the Gestapo will arrest more than 7,000 suspects, and the "people's courts" will sentence 4,980 to death. (Children)

1944 The Bomb Plot:  General Franz Halder is arrested by the Gestapo. He will be held in several different concentration camps until released by the Allies in 1945. (Duffy)

1944 The Bomb Plot: Goebbels is named "General Plenipotentiary for the Mobilization of Total War." (Goebbels)

1944 WW2: American forces landed on Guam in the Marianas, freeing it from Japanese invaders.

1944 WW2: The Polish Committee for National Liberation is set up by Stalin to establish control of Poland. Next day the Committee is declared the new provisional government of Poland.

1945 Nuremberg War Crimes Trials: Supreme Court Justice Jackson returns to Nuremberg with British and French representatives, AS They inspect possible housing accomodations. (Maser II)

1948 Death: Arshile Gorky, abstract expressionist, died at the age of 43. Note: This is one of the fellows a speech by a certain world leader, linked here a few days ago, was referring to.

1949 Cold War: The U.S. Senate ratifies the North Atlantic Treaty by a vote of 82-13.

1949 Birth: Gary Trudeau, political cartoonist. Note: Cartoon below.

1954 The Geneva Conference partitions Vietnam into North Vietnam and South Vietnam.

1955 The first submarine powered by a liquid metal cooled reactor, The Seawolf, is launched.

1959 A US District Court judge in New York City rules that "Lady Chatterley's Lover" is not a 'dirty book.'

1961 Capt. Virgil "Gus" Grissom becomes the second American to rocket into a sub-orbital pattern around the Earth, on the Liberty Bell 7.

1962 160 civil right activists are jailed after a demonstration in Albany, Georgia.

1965 Pakistan, Iran and Turkey sign the Regional Co-Operation pact.

1969 Astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin 'Buzz' Aldrin climb back into the lunar module, Eagle, and lift off from the surface of the moon. Note: PIC is not chronologically accurate.

1970 After 11 years of construction, the massive billion-dollar Aswan High Dam across the Nile River in Egypt is completed, ending the cycle of flood and drought in the Nile River region but triggering an environmental controversy.

1980 Draft registration begins in the United States for 19 and 20-year-old men.

1983 The lowest temperature ever recorded in the world is recorded on this day: 129 degrees below 0 at Vostok, Antarctica.

1983 Cold War: The Polish government ends 19 months of martial law.

1984 Death: James J. Fixx, the man who popularised jogging He had a heart attack and died while jogging in Vermont.

1989 Former president Ronald Reagan is inducted into the Cowboy Hall of Fame, in tribute for his role in The Santa Fe Trail, and for his days as host of television's Death Valley Days.

1990 All In All: Roger Waters stages a production of "The Wall" at Potsdamer Platz, Germany. Sinead O'Connor, Bryan Adams, Phil Collins and Cyndi Lauper, among others, take part in the benefit.

1997 The USS Constitution, which defended the United States during the War of 1812, sets sail under its own power for the first time in 116 years.

1999 They find the dumb rich kids plane. (See July 16)

2000 A report from special counsel John Danforth clears Attorney General Janet Reno and the government of wrongdoing in the 19 April 1993, fire that ended the Branch Davidian siege near Waco, Texas.

2002 WorldCom displaces Enron as the largest US company to declare bankruptcy.



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