It happened today – this day in history – December 13

1466: Death of artist Donatello.

1577: Sir Francis Drake sets sail from England on a circumnavigation of the world.

1642: Explorer Abel Tasman sights the South Island of present day New Zealand.

1643: The Battle of Alton takes place in Hampshire during the English Civil War.

1864: Paraguay declares war on Brazil and invades the next day.

1902: British and German ships bombard Venezuelan forts after President Castro refuses to comply with ultimatum demanding damages caused during his takeover of the government in 1899.

1916: Avalanche on the Tyrol kills 10,000 Austrian and Italian troops in 24 hrs.

1920: The League of Nations establishes the International Court of Justice in The Hague.

1937: Japanese troops conquer and plunder Nanjing.

1939: Battle of the River Plate – Three British cruisers take on German pocket battleship Graf Spee.

1944: Japanese kamikaze pilot crashes into US cruiser Nashville, killing 138.

1949: The Knesset votes to transfer Israel’s capital to Jerusalem.

1950: James Dean begins his career with an appearance in a Pepsi commercial.

1959: Archbishop Makarios is elected first president of Cyprus.

1961: The Beatles sign a formal agreement to be managed by Brian Epstein.

1964: In El Paso, Texas, President Lyndon B Johnson and Mexican President Gustavo Diaz Ordaz set off an explosion diverting the Rio Grande to reshape US-Mexico border.

1966: The Jimi Hendrix Experience made their TV debut on ITV’s ‘Ready Steady Go!’ On the same day, the band recorded ‘Foxy Lady’ for their first album. .

1974: Malta becomes a republic.

1981: Poland’s communist government declares martial law and arrests Solidarity activists in a failed attempt to crush the opposition.

1995: Riots break out in Brixton.

1996: Kofi Annan is elected Secretary-General of the United Nations.

2003: Former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein is captured hiding underground near his home town of Tikrit.

2004: Ukrainian striker Andriy Shevchenko wins the Ballon d’Or.

2017: The government loses a key vote in Parliament for an amendment to allow MPs to vote on Brexit.

BIRTHDAYS: Dick van Dyke, actor, 94; Christopher Plummer, actor, 90; Jeff ‘Skunk’ Baxter, guitarist (Steely Dan/The Doobie Brothers) 71; Ted Nugent, guitarist, 71; Tom Verlaine, singer/guitarist/songwriter (Television) 70; Paula Wilcox, actress, 70; Robert Lindsey, actor, 70; Davy O’List, guitarist (The Nice) 69; Jim Davidson, comedian, 66; Steve Buscemi, actor, 62; Eric Marienthal, jazz saxophonist, 62; Jamie Foxx (Eric Bishop) actor, 52; Nick McCarthy, guitarist (Franz Ferdinand) 45; Sara Cox, broadcaster, 45; Tom Delonge, musician/songwriter (Blink 1982) 44; Amy Lee, singer, (Evanescence) 38; Taylor Swift, singer, 30.

Mick Ferris

Editor Email: [email protected]