It happened today – this day in history – April 4

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1406: Death of Robert III, King of Scots.

1581: Francis Drake is knighted by Queen Elizabeth I aboard the Golden Hind at Deptford.

1617: Death of mathematician and inventor of logarithms, John Napier.

1774: Death of dramatist Oliver Goldsmith.

1814: Napoleon abdicates for the first time in favour of his son.

1841: John Tyler becomes US president after the death of President William Henry Harrison while in office.

1866: Alexander II of Russia narrowly escapes an assassination attempt in St Petersburg.

1900: Assassination attempt on the Prince of Wales, later King Edward VII.

1939: Faisal II ascends to the throne of Iraq.

1941: German troops conquer Benghazi, Libya.

1944: British troops capture Addis Ababa, Abyssinia.

1945: Soviet forces liberate Hungary from German occupation.

1958: Aldermaston march against nuclear weapons. On the same day, Cheryl Crane aged 14, daughter of actress Lana Turner stabs to death organized crime figure Johnny Stompanato, her mother’s boyfriend, in self-defence. The crime was ruled a “justifiable homicide”.

1959: France beats Wales, 11-3 at Stade Colombes to win the Five Nations Rugby Championship outright for the first time.

1960: Charlton Heston wins the best actor Oscar for his role in Ben Hur. On the same day, Senegal declares independence from France.

1964: The Beatles held the top five places on the US singles chart.

1968: Civil rights leader Martin Luther King is assassinated in Memphis.

1970: Pat Taffe wins the Grand National on Gay Trip.

1975: Microsoft is founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen.

1979: Ex-President Zulfikar Ali Bhutto of Pakistan is executed.

1981: Bucks Fizz won the Eurovision Song Contest held in Dublin, with the UK entry ‘Making Your Mind Up’. On the same day, Bob Champion wins the Grand National on Aldaniti at Aintree.

1983: Death of actress Gloria Swanson aged 84.

1995: Death of broadcaster Kenny Everett aged 50 from an AIDS related illness.

2008: Beyonce Knowles married Jay-Z at his New York apartment.

2018: 21st Commonwealth Games open in the Gold Coast, Australia. On the same day, former footballer Ray Wilkins dies aged 61.

2019: Amazon’s Jeff Bezos and and wife MacKenzie agree a record-breaking $35 billion divorce settlement.

BIRTHDAYS: Clive Davis, record executive, 88; Craig T Nelson, actor, 76; Dave Hill, guitarist (Slade) 74; Derek Thompson, actor, 72; Christine Lahti, actress, 70; Jonathan Agnew, cricket commentator, 60; Hugo Weaving, actor, 60; Graham Norton, TV host, 57; Paul Parker, former footballer, 56; Robert Downey Jr, actor, 55; David Blaine, magician, 47; Stephen Mulhern, TV presenter, 43; Jonny Borrell, guitar/vocals (Razorlight) 40.

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Mick Ferris

Editor Email: [email protected]