It happened today – this day in history – August 18

1227: Death of Mongolian warlord Genghis Khan (Temüjin Borjigin).

1587: Virginia Dare is the first English child born in the New World.

1612: The Pendle Witch trial begins with 10 people accused of witchcraft in Lancaster. The key witness is a nine year-old boy.

1769: A lightning strike on the Bastion of San Nazaro in Brescia, Italy, ignites 90 tonnes of gunpowder, killing 3,000 people.

1850: Death of French novelist Honoré de Balzac aged 51.

1862: Sioux Indians begin an uprising in Minnesota.

1914: US President Woodrow Wilson issues “Proclamation of Neutrality” in the First World War.

1932: Englishman James Mollisson is the first to fly east to west over the Atlantic.

1934: Don Bradman (244) and Bill Ponsford (205no) put on 451 in a world record partnership for Australia on Day 1 of the fifth Test win against England at the Oval.

1940: The Luftwaffe loses approximately 69 aircraft and the RAF loses 68 in one of the largest ever air battles.

1941: The German concentration camp Amersfoort opens in The Netherlands.

1944: Chartres is freed by US 3rd Army forces led by Gen George S Patton. On the same day, the US 15th Army Corps reaches Mantes-Gassicourt near Paris and rail workers in the city went on strike against their Nazi occupiers.

1950: Julien Lahaut, chairman of the Communist Party of Belgium is assassinated.

1958: The novel “Lolita” by Vladimir Nabokov is published. On the same day, Floyd Patterson TKOs Roy Harris in Round 13 for the heavyweight boxing title.

1962: Ringo Starr makes his debut with The Beatles at a horticultural society dance in Birkenhead after just two hours of rehearsal.

1964: South Africa is banned from the Olympic Games in Tokyo over its refusal to condemn apartheid.

1966: Singer Paul Jones leaves Manfred Mann and is replaced by Mike D’Abo, writer of the classic Chris Farlowe song and The Office theme “Handbags and Gladrags”.

1969: Mick Jagger is accidentally shot in the hand during filming of Ned Kelly in Australia.

1971: The British Army is accused of shooting dead an unarmed, disabled man during disturbances in Northern Ireland.

1973: Drummer Gene Krupa plays for the final time with the Benny Goodman Quartet.

1976: The USSR’s Luna 24 soft-lands on the Moon. On the same day, two US soldiers tasked with cutting down a poplar tree blocking the view of UN observers are killed by North Koreans claiming it was planted by Kim Il-sung in the Korean Demilitarized Zone.

1977: Two Missouri girls were killed and a third was critically injured when a car being driven by an 18-year-old Memphis teenager swerved into a crowd of over 2,000 Elvis mourners standing in front of Graceland’s music gate at about 4am. The driver was charged with drunk driving, leaving the scene of an accident and two counts of second degree murder. On the same day, South African anti-apartheid activist Steve Biko is arrested at a roadblock.

1982: The City of Liverpool named four streets after The Beatles.

1989: Manchester United Football Club is sold for £20m in the biggest takeover deal in the history of British football.

1992: Conditions in two Serbian detention camps are condemned as “hell on earth” by the man leading a delegation to inspect them, Dr Bernard Kouchner, the French minister for humanitarian affairs.

1994: The Commonwealth Games opens in Victoria, Canada.

1996: Spice Girls: Wannabe

1996: Singles chart:

  1. Wannabe – The Spice Girls
  2. Why – 3T ft Michael Jackson
  3. We’ve Got It Goin’ On – The Backstreet Boys
  4. Macarena – Los Del Rio
  5. How Bizarre – OMC
  6. Good Enough – Dodgy
  7. Someday – Eternal
  8. Se A Vida E – Pet Shop Boys
  9. Tha Crossroads – Bone Thugs N Harmony
  10. Better Watch Out – Ant & Dec

2004: Death of film soundtrack composer Elmer Bernstein aged 82.

2012: NATO air strikes kill at least 13 militants in Afghanistan.

2013: Album chart:

  1. The Impossible Dread – Richard & Adam
  2. Home – Rudimental
  3. Night Visions – The Imagine Dragons
  4. Big TV – White Lies
  5. All The Little Lights – Passenger
  6. To Be Loved – Michael Buble
  7. Nothing But The Beat – David Guetta
  8. 18 months – Calvin Harris
  9. Time – Rod Stewart
  10. In A Perfect World – Kodaline

2016: Usain Bolt wins his third consecutive Olympic 200m title in Rio. On the same day, Britain’s Alistair Brownlee retains his Olympic men’s triathlon title.

2017: Civilian researchers discover the USS Indianapolis 18,000 feet below the Pacific surface, 72 years after it was sunk by Japanese torpedoes. On the same day, White House chief strategist Steve Bannon is fired by US President Donald Trump and entertainer Bruce Forsyth dies aged 89.

2018: Imran Khan becomes Prime Minister of Pakistan after gaining the support of independent members after his party, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) won the most votes but not a majority in the general election. On the same day, former Secretary-General of the UN, Kofi Annan, dies aged 80.

2019: 1.7 million take part in pro-democracy protest in Hong Kong, a quarter of the population.

BIRTHDAYS: Roman Polanski, director, 87; Robert Redford, actor/director, 84; Sarah Dash, singer (Labelle) 75; Nigel Griggs, bassist (Split Enz) 71; Dennis Elliott, drummer (Foreigner) 70; Ricardo Villa, former footballer, 68; Denis Leary, comedian/actor, 63; Madeleine Stowe, actress, 62; Christian Slater, actor, 51; Edward Norton, actor/writer, 51; Aphex Twin (Richard James) 49; Régine Chassagne, multi instrumentalist/singer (Arcade Fire) 43; Andy Samberg, comedian/actor, 42; Mika (Mica Penniman) singer-songwriter, 37; Robert Huth, footballer, 36.

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Mick Ferris

Editor Email: [email protected]