It happened today – this day in history – December 19

Mick Ferris
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1154: Henry II is crowned king of England.

1642: Four of Abel Tasman’s crew are killed at Wharewharangi Bay by Māori; Tasman’s ships depart without landing.

1783: William Pitt the Younger becomes the youngest ever British Prime Minister at age 24.

1835: HMS Beagle carrying Charles Darwin, arrives in New Zealand.

1843: A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens is published.

1848: Death of novelist Emily Bronte from TB aged 30.

1851: Death of landscape artist J.M.W. Turner aged 76.

1929: Death of blues artist Blind Lemon Jefferson aged 36.

1946: War breaks out in Indochina as Ho Chi Minh attacks the French in Hanoi.

1950: General Dwight D Eisenhower is appointed NATO commander. On the same day, the Dalai Lama flees the Chinese invasion of Tibet.

1955: Carl Perkins records his song Blue Suede Shoes.

1957: Elvis Presley had his draft notice served on him for the US Army.

1965: Charles de Gaulle is re-elected president of France.

1969: Mick Jagger was fined £200 plus 50 guineas costs at Marlborough Magistrates Court for possession of cannabis..

1971: Premiere of Stanley Kubrick’s film of the Anthony Burgess book A Clockwork Orange

1972: Apollo 17, the last moon landing, returns to Earth.

1974: Nelson Rockefeller is sworn in as US vice president.

1975: Ronnie Wood joins the Rolling Stones.

1979: Elvis Presley’s personal physician, George Nichopoulos, was charged with ‘illegally and indiscriminately’ prescribing over 12,000 tablets of uppers, downers, and painkillers for the star during the 20 months preceding his death. Although he was acquitted, he was charged again in 1980 and again in 1992 and was stripped of his medical license in July 1995.

1981: Sixteen lives are lost when the Penlee lifeboat goes to the aid of the stricken coaster Union Star in heavy seas.

1984: Chinese premier Ziyang and Margaret Thatcher sign the Sino-British Joint Declaration to transfer Hong Kong back to China in 1997.

1986: The USSR frees dissident Andrei Sakharov from internal exile.

1988: NASA unveils plans for a lunar colony and a manned mission to Mars.

1991: Boris Yeltsin takes control of the Kremlin.

1993: Michael Clarke, drummer with The Byrds, died of liver failure aged 47.

1998: US House of Representatives votes to impeach President Bill Clinton.

2000: Portuguese midfielder Luís Figo wins the Ballon d’Or.

2013: 81 people are injured after part of the ceiling caves in at London’s Apollo Theatre.

2016: Russian ambassador to Turkey shot dead at an art gallery in Ankara.

2018: US President Donald Trump announces victory over the Islamic State and planned withdrawal of US troops from Syria.

BIRTHDAYS: Lenny White, jazz drummer, 70; Limahl (Chris Hamill) singer, 59; Jennifer Beals, actress, 56; Beatrice Dalle, actress, 55; Criss Angel (Christopher Sarantakos) magician, 52; Richard Hammond, TV presenter, 50; Alyssa Milano, actress, 47; Ricky Ponting, former Australian cricketer, 45; Jake Gyllenhaal, actor, 39; Gary Cahill, footballer, 34; Karim Benzema, footballer, 32; Alexis Sanchez, footballer, 31.


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