It happened today – this day in history – April 18

1480: Birth of Lucretia Borgia, daughter of Pope Alexander VI.

1506: The cornerstone of the current St. Peter’s Basilica is laid in the Vatican by Pope Julius II.

1521: Cardinal Alexander questions Martin Luther at the Diet of Worms.

1676: Sudbury, Massachusetts, is attacked by American Indians.

1688: Francis Daniel Pastorius presents the first formal written protest against African-American slavery in the English colonies in Germantown, Pennsylvania.

1775: Paul Revere and William Dawes ride from Charlestown to Lexington warning the “regulars are coming!”

1783: Fighting ceases in the American Revolution, eight years to the day after it began.

1809: First run of 2,000 guineas horse race at Newmarket.

1835: Lord Melbourne becomes Prime Minister after Robert Peel resigns out of frustration.

1861: Col Robert E Lee turns down offer to command Union armies in the American Civil War.

1903: Bury beat Derby County 6-0 in the FA Cup Final played at Crystal Palace.

1906: San Francisco earthquake and fire kills nearly 4,000 while destroying 75 per cent of the city.

1908: Tommy Burns KOs Jewy Smith in Round 5 for the heavyweight boxing title.

1923: Poland annexes central Lithuania.

1924: The first crossword puzzle book is published by Simon & Schuster.

1927: Chiang Kai-shek forms anti-government in China.

1930: A BBC news announcer announces “there is no news” and plays music instead.

1934: The first washateria (laundromat) opens in Fort Worth, Texas. On the same day, Adolf Hitler appoints Joachom von Robbentrop as Ambassador for Disarmament.

1935: Gene Sarazen’s double eagle on the 15th, wins him his second US Masters.

1943: US Army Air Force P-38G fighter aircraft ambush and shoot down the transport bomber aircraft of Isokoru Yamamoto, commander-in-chief of the Imperial Japanese Navy and mastermind behind the Pearl Harbour attack.

1948: The International Court of Justice opens in The Hague Netherlands.

1949: The Republic of Ireland withdraws from the commonwealth.

1954: Colonel Gamal Abdal Nasser seizes power and becomes Prime Minister of Egypt.

1955: Scientist Albert Einstein dies aged 76 from an abdominal aortic aneurysm.

1956: US film actress Grace Kelly marries Prince Rainier III of Monaco.

1958: A US federal court rules that poet Ezra Pound can be released from an insane asylum.


1960: 60,000 demonstrators gather in Trafalgar Square to mark the end of the Aldermaston to London “ban the bomb” march.

1963: Dr James Campbell performs the world’s first human nerve transplant in the US.

1971: Singles chart:

  1. Hot Love – T. Rex
  2. Double Barrel – Dave and Ansell Collins
  3. Bridget The Midget – Ray Stevens
  4. Where Do I Begin (Theme From Love Story) – Andy Williams
  5. Rose Garden – Lynn Anderson
  6. Mozart Symphony No40 – Waldo de los Rios
  7. If Not For You – Olivia Newton John
  8. Walkin’ – CCS
  9. Something Old Something New – The Fantastics
  10. Jack In The Box – Clodagh Rodgers
1971: The Nice – Elegy

Album chart:

  1. Motown Chartbusters Vol 5 – Various Artists
  2. Home Lovin’ Man – Andy Williams
  3. Bridge Over Troubled Water – Simon and Garfunkel
  4. Songs Of Love And Hate – Leonard Cohen
  5. Elegy – The Nice
  6. Aqualung – Jethro Tull
  7. Cry Of Love – Jimi Hendrix
  8. Greatest Hits – Andy Williams
  9. I’m 10,000 Years Old – Elvis Presley
  10. Greatest Hits Vol 2 – Frank Sinatra

1972: The Widgery Report on Bloody Sunday in Northern Ireland is published, causing outrage among the people of Derry who call it the “Widgery Whitewash”.

1974: The Red Brigade kidnaps Italian attorney general Mario Sossi.

1975: Four Bay City Rollers fans are taken to hospital and 35 others require on site treatment after they attempt to swim across a lake to get to their heroes at a BBC Radio 1 fun day at Mallory Park.

1977: Alex Haley, author of “Roots” is awarded the Pulitzer Prize.

1980: Zimbabwe declares independence from the UK.

1982: The Zimbabwean capital Salisbury is renamed Harare.

1983: A suicide bomber kills 63 at the US Embassy in Lebanon.

1984: Michael Jackson undergoes surgery in a Los Angeles hospital to repair damage done after his hair caught fire during the filming of a Pepsi commercial.

1988: Three Israeli judges rule that retired US car worker John Demjanjuk was a guard known as “Ivan the Terrible” who operated the gas chambers at the Treblinka death camp in Poland during the Second World War. The conviction was quashed in 1993.

1994: Ethnic violence spreads throughout Rwanda. On the same day, cricketer Brian Lara hits 375 runs in one day for the West Indies vs England to beat Gary Sobers’ world record and former US President Richard Nixon suffers a stroke.

1995 Oasis drummer Tony McCarrol is told by phone that he is being sacked from the group.

1996: Seventeen Greek tourists and an Egyptian guide are killed by gunmen in Cairo. On the same day, Bernard Edwards bass guitarist and producer from Chic, dies of pneumonia in a Tokyo hotel room and 106 civilians are killed when the Israel Defense Forces accidentally shell the UN compound at Quana in Lebanon.

1998: The Full Monty wins best film at the BAFTAS.

2002: Explorer and anthropologist Thor Heyerdahl dies aged 87.

2013: Storm Thorgerson, whose album cover artwork includess the Pink Floyd albums Atom Heart Mother, The Dark Side of the Moon and Wish You Were Here, dies aged 69.

2017 Prime Minister Teresa May announces she will seek a “snap” election.

2019: Journalist Lyra McKee is shot and killed while covering riots in Derry, Northern Ireland.

2021: A 12-team European Super League is announced to widespread condemnation amongst governments, non-involved clubs, press and fans. As a result, all the English Premier League clubs involved withdraw within three days issuing statements apologising to fans.

2022: Russia begins a major new offensive in the Donbas region, during their invasion of Ukraine.

2023: Fox News settles a lawsuit with Dominion Voting Systems for $787.5 million, moments before trial, admitting it had defamed Dominion during the US 2020 election by broadcasting conspiracy theories.

Vanessa Kirby (Image:
Hugo Coucke)

BIRTHDAYS: Mike Vickers, guitarist/flautist (Manfred Mann) 80; Hayley Mills, actress, 78; James Woods, actor, 77; Rick Moranis, actor, 71; Eric Roberts, actor, 68; Jane Leeves, actress, 63; Shirlie Kemp (Holliman), singer, 62; Conan O’Brian, comedian/chatshow host, 61; Eric McCormack, actor, 61; Mike Mangini, drummer (Dream Theater), 61; Bez (Mark Berry), dancer (Happy Mondays) 60; Maria Bello, actress, 57; David Tennant (McDonald), actor, 53; Eli Roth, director/screenwriter/actor, 52; Mark Tremonti, guitarist (Creed) 50; Edgar Wright, director, 50; Madeleine Peyroux, singer, 50; Melissa Joan Hart, actress, 48; Kourtney Kardashian, media personality, 45; Matthew Upson, footballer, 45; America Ferrera, actress,40; Lukasz Fabianski, Polish goalkeeper, 39; Rosie Huntingdon-Whiteley, model/actress, 37; Vanessa Kirby, actress, 36; Wojciech Szczęsny, Polish goalkeeper, 34; Chloe Bennet (Wang), actress, 32; Divock Origi, footballer, 29; Donny van de Beek, footballer, 27.