It happened today – this day in history – July 30

762: The city of Baghdad is founded by Abbasid caliph Al-Mansur, just north of ancient Baghdad.

1678: English troops land in Flanders.

1729: The city of Baltimore is founded in Maryland, US.

1771: Death of poet Thomas Gray aged 54.

1775: Captain James Cook returns to England.

1811: Father Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, leader of the Mexican insurgency, is executed by the Spanish in Chihuahua, Mexico.

1818: Birth of novelist Emily Bronte in Thornton, West Yorkshire.

1863: President Abraham Lincoln issues “eye-for-eye” order to shoot a rebel prisoner for every black prisoner shot. On the same day, Chief Pocatello of the Shoshone tribe signs the Treaty of Box Elder, promising to stop harassing the emigrant trails in southern Idaho and northern Utah. Also, Henry Ford is born in Michigan.

1869: The Charles, considered the world’s first “oil tanker”, departs from the United States headed for Europe with a bulk capacity of 7,000 barrels of oil.

1898: Birth of sculptor Henry Moore in Castleford. On the same day, German “Iron” chancellor, Otto von Bismarck dies aged 83.

1900: Parliament passes several progressive social acts: a Mines Act, a Workmen’s Compensation Act and a Railway Act.

1907: Russia and Japan sign an agreement guaranteeing freedom of China while recognizing each other’s special interests. On the same day, the French bombard Casablanca and land troops to occupy the Atlantic-coast region of Morocco.

1909: French chemist Eugène Schueller founds L’Oréal with his new range of hair dyes.

1913: Conclusion of the Second Balkan War.

1928: George Eastman shows first amateur colour motion pictures to guests including Thomas Edison at his New York house.

1930: Uruguay beats Argentina, 4-2 to win the inaugural FIFA World Cup in Montevideo.

1932: The Olympic Games open in Los Angeles.

1933: Fred Perry beats André Merlin 4-6, 8-6, 6-2, 7-5 to give Great Britain a 3-2 victory over France in the International Lawn Tennis Challenge.

1935: The first Penguin book is published, starting the paperback revolution.

1938: General Ioannis Metaxas names himself premier of Greece.

1939: Sylvère Maes of Belgium wins his third Tour de France.

1942: The German SS kills 25,000 Jews in Minsk, Belorussia.

1945: After delivering the Atomic Bomb across the Pacific, the cruiser USS Indianapolis is torpedoed and sunk by a Japanese submarine. 880 of the crew die, many after being attacked by sharks.

1948: Czech distance running legend Emil Zátopek wins the 10,000m at the London Olympics in 29:59.6 (OR).

1954: The British Empire Games and Commonwealth Games open in Vancouver.

1963: British spy Kim Philby is found in Moscow.

1966: England win the World Cup, beating West Germany 4-2 in extra time at Wembley stadium. Geoff Hurst becomes the only player to score a hat trick in a World Cup final.

1967: Race riot in Milwaukee.


1968: The Beatles close their Apple Boutique in London after seven months, giving stock away to passers by.

1969: Working on the Abbey Road album, The Beatles record overdubs on the songs Come Together, Polytheme Pam/She Came In Through The Bathroom Window (which from the beginning had been recorded as 1 continuous song), You Never Give Me Your Money and Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight. They begin to assemble the medley that would make up most of side 2. Paul McCartney tells tape operator John Kurlander to discard Her Majesty, which had initially been between the tracks Mean Mr Mustard and Polythene Pam, but rather than lose it, he tacked it onto the end of the tape 20 seconds after the end of the final track The End. The band were unaware, until they listened to the first playback of the finished album and the acoustic vignette suddenly appeared, they loved it and decided to keep it.

1971: Apollo 15 lands on the Moon. On the same day, a Japanese Boeing 727 collides with an F-86 fighter killing 162.

1973: An 11-year legal battle ends with more than £20 million in compensation awarded to victims of thalidomide.

1974: Greek, Turkish and British foreign ministers sign a peace agreement for Cyprus. On the same day, the House Judiciary Committee votes on the third and last charge of “high crimes & misdemeanors” to impeach President Nixon in the Watergate cover-up.

1975: US Teamsters President Jimmy Hoffa disappears in suburban Detroit. He is never seen again.

1976: Four Protestant civilians are shot dead at a pub off Milltown Road, Belfast.

1980: Vanuatu (New Hebrides) gains independence from Britain and France.

1984: Alvenus tanker at Cameron, Louisiana, spills 2.8 million gallons of oil. Holly Roffey becomes the youngest person, aged 11 days, to receive a heart transplant. She dies 17 days later at the National Heart Hospital.

1986: The parents of missing London estate agent Suzy Lamplugh make an emotional appeal for her safe return. On the same day, RCA dropped John Denver from its roster after the release of his single, What Are We Making Weapons For. Variety magazine said the song upset the record company’s new owner, General Electric, one of the largest defence contractors in the US.

1988: King Hussain of Jordan renounces sovereignty over the West Bank to the PLO.

1989: Singles chart:

  1. Swing The Mood – Jive Bunny and the Mastermixers
  2. Wouldn’t Change A Thing – Kylie Minogue
  3. You’ll Never Stop Me From Loving You – Sonia
  4. Too Much – Bros
  5. French Kiss – Lil’ Louis
  6. Don’t Wanna Lose You – Gloria Estefan
  7. On Our Own – Bobby Brown
  8. London Nights – The London Boys
  9. Ain’t Nobody – Rufus and Chaka Khan
  10. Wind Beneath My Wings – Bette Midler
1989: Transvision Vamp – Velveteen

Album chart:

  1. Cuts Both Ways – Gloria Estefan
  2. A New Flame – Simply Red
  3. The Twelve Commandments Of Dance – The London Boys
  4. Ten Good Reasons – Jason Donovan
  5. Don’t Be Cruel – Bobby Brown
  6. Club Classics Volume 1 – Soul II Sould
  7. Velveteen – Transvision Vamp
  8. Appetite For Destruction – Guns n Roses
  9. Street Fighting Years – Simple Minds
  10. Batman (OST) – Prince

1991: A traffic cop is forced to tear up a traffic ticket given to the limousine that Axl Rose is travelling in after it made an illegal turn. Rose threatened to pull that nights Guns n’ Roses gig if the ticket was issued.

1992: Yael Arad becomes Israel’s first ever Olympic medalist when she wins silver in the women’s 61kg judo in Barcelona. On the same day, cartoonist Joe Shuster, co-creator of Superman, dies aged 78.

1996: Hollywood legend Claudette Colbert dies from a stroke aged 93.

2003: Sam Phillips the founder of Sun Records and studio in Memphis dies of respiratory failure. He discovered Elvis Presley in 1954 and recorded what some consider to be the first rock and roll record, ‘Rocket 88’ by Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats (actually Ike Turner’s Rhythm Kings) in 1951. On the same day, the Rolling Stones, AC/DC, Rush, Justin Timberlake, The Flaming Lips and The Isley Brothers play a benefit concert in Toronto to prove that the city is safe from SARS. With 450,000 spectators, it was the largest concert in Canadian history.

2007: Death of Italian film director Michelangelo Antonioni aged 94. On the same day, legendary swedish director Ingmar Bergman dies aged 89. Also, Britney Spears divorces dancer/rapper Kevin Federline after two years of marriage.

2009: Procol Harum organist Matthew Fisher finally won a long battle to be recognised as a co-writer of the band’s hit A Whiter Shade Of Pale. Law Lords ruled that Fisher, who claimed he wrote the song’s organ melody, was entitled to a share of future royalties. In 2006, the High Court had ruled that he was entitled to 40% of the copyright owned by singer/pianist Gary Brooker and lyricist Keith Reid, but the Court Of Appeal had overturned the ruling in 2008 saying he waited too long, 38 years, to bring the case to court.

2011: Granddaughter of The Queen, equestrian, Zara Phillips, marries England rugby player Mike Tindall in Edinburgh.

2012: An Indian power grid failure leaves over 300 million without electricity. On the same day, General Motors signs a record breaking 7-year $559 million sponsorship deal with Manchester United. On the same day, Irish novelist Maeve Binchy (Snell) dies aged 72.

2013: Wikileaks discloser Bradley [later Chelsea] Manning is convicted of 17 espionage charges.

2014: The EU and US extend sanctions on Russia to include banks, energy, and defense firms. Moscow denies the allegation that Russia is arming rebels in eastern Ukraine.

2015: Country music singer, Lynn Anderson, dies aged 67.

2018: Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt mistakenly calls his Chinese-born wife “Japanese” in a meeting with his Chinese counterpart in Beijing. On the same day, Australian Catholic Archbishop Philip Wilson resigns after being convicted of concealing sexual abuse.

2019: German electronic music pioneers Kraftwerk win a 30-year legal battle over their song Metal On Metal, when The European Court of Justice rules against the sampling of the track by hip-hop producers Moses Pelham and Martin Haas over a version of the Sabrina Setlur song Nur Mir (Only Me).

2020: NASA launches the Perseverance rover and Ingenuity helicopter to Mars aboard a V541 rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida.

BIRTHDAYS: Buddy (George) Guy, blues guitarist, 85; Peter Bogdanovich, director/screenwriter, 82; Sir Clive Sinclair, inventor/entrepreneur, 81; Paul Anka, singer-songwriter, 80; Frances de la Tour, actress, 77; David Sanborn, saxophonist, 76; Jeffrey Hammond, bassist (Jethro Tull) 75; Arnold Schwarzenegger, actor, 74; Jean Reno (Moreno y Herrera–Jiménez), 73; Rat Scabies (Chris Miller) drummer (The Damned), 64; Kate Bush, singer-songwriter, 63; Daley Thompson, decathlete, 63; Laurence Fishburne, actor, 60; Lisa Kudrow, actress, 58; Vivica A Fox, actress, 57; Jürgen Klinsmann footballer/manager, 57; Louise Wener, singer-songwriter (Sleeper) author, 53; Terry Crews, actor/TV presenter, 53; Sean Moore, drummer (Manic Street Preachers) 53; Sofie Gråbøl, actress, 53; Simon Baker, actor, 52; Christopher Nolan, director/screenwriter, 51; Tom Green, comedian, 50; Christine Taylor (Stiller), actress, 50; Hilary Swank, actress, 47; Jason Robinson, former rugby player, 46; Jaime Pressly, actress, 44; Diva Zappa, artist, 42; Justin Rose, golfer, 41; April Bowlby, actress, 41; Yvonne Strahovski (Strzechowski), actress, 39; Jimmy Anderson, cricketer, 39; Gina Rodriguez (Rodriguez-LoCicero), actress, 37; Joey King, actress, 22.