It happened today – this day in history – June 23

930: The Icelandic Parliament, the Alþingi, the world’s oldest parliament, is established.

1547: Champion of the Protestant Reformation, Philip I, Landgrave of Hesse is captured and taken to south Germany.

1724: Russia and Turkey sign Treaty of Constantinople.

1757: Robert Clive defeats the army led by Suraja Dowlaat Plassey to gain control of Bengal.

1758: British forces defeat French troops at Krefeld in Germany during the Seven Years War.

1763: Birth of Joséphine de Beauharnais, first wife of Napoleon I and first Empress of France.

1775: The first regatta on river Thames.

1789: Louis XVI rejects the demands of the Third Estate, calling itself the National Assembly, during the opening stages of the French Revolution.

1794: Catherine The Great grants Jews permission to settle in Kiev.

1894: The International Olympic Committee is founded at the Sorbonne, Paris. On the same day, Edward VIII is born in Richmond.

1900: British Governor Frederick Hodgson and some of his supporters flee Fort Coomassie, Gold Coast, Africa, where they have been under siege since April 6.

1908: The USA suspends diplomatic relationships with Venezuela after the refusal of Cipriano Castro’s government to compensate Americans for injuries suffered in the uprising of 1899. On the same day, Shah Mohammed Ali leads a successful counter-revolution in Persia, aided by the Russian legation and a Cossack brigade.

1917: An ammunition factory in Boleweg, Bohemia, explodes, killing 1,000 people.

1922: Golfer Walter Hagen becomes the first American-born winner of the British Open.

1925: A British warship fires on strikers in Hong Kong harbour.

1931: Wiley Post and Harold Catty took off for a flight around the world.

1940: After conquering France, Adolf Hitler visits Paris and views the Eiffel Tower and the grave of Napoleon Bonaparte.

1942: Germany’s latest fighter, a Focke-Wulf FW190 is captured intact when it mistakenly lands at RAF Pembrey in Wales.

1943: The RAF discovers Wernher von Braun’s V1/V2 rocket base in Peenemunde.

1950: The Swiss parliament refuses voting rights for women.

1951: British diplomats and Soviet spies Guy Burgess and Donald Maclean flee to the USSR.

1955: The ocean liner Queen Elizabeth leaves for New York on schedule despite attempts by striking seamen to delay her departure.

1956: Gamal Abdel Nasser is elected President of Egypt.

1959: Convicted Manhattan Project spy Klaus Fuchs is released after only nine years in prison and allowed to emigrate to East Germany where he resumes a scientific career in ultrasound.

1960: The first contraceptive pill is made available for purchase in the US.

Singles chart:

  1. Three Steps To Heaven – Eddie Cochran
  2. Mama – Connie Francis
  3. Handy Man – Jimmy Jones
  4. Cradle Of Love – Johnny Preston
  5. I Wanna Go Home – Lonnie Donegan
  6. Cathy’s Clown – The Everly Brothers
  7. Shazam – Duane Eddy
  8. Sweet Nothin’s – Brenda Lee
  9. Ain’t Misbehavin’ – Tommy Bruce and the Bruisers
  10. That’s You – Nat King Cole
1963: The Beatles – Please Please Me

1963: Album chart:


  1. Please Please Me – The Beatles
  2. Summer Holiday – Cliff Richard
  3. Reminiscing – Buddy Holly
  4. Greatest Hits – The Shadows
  5. It Happened At The World’s Fair – Elvis Presley
  6. West Side Story – Original Soundtrack
  7. Billy – Billy Fury
  8. I’ll Remember You – Frank Ifield
  9. South Pacific – Original Soundtrack
  10. Hats Off To Del Shannon – Del Shannon

1969: Joe Frazier TKOs Jerry Quarry in Round 8 for the heavyweight boxing title.

1972: Chancellor of the Exchequer, Anthony Barber, announces his decision to temporarily float the pound. On the same day, US President Richard Nixon and his chief of staff H. R. Haldeman agree to use the CIA to cover up Watergate.

1975: Alice Cooper falls off stage in Vancouver, Canada, breaking six ribs.

1979: The West Indies beat England by 92 runs to win the Cricket World Cup at Lords.

1980: Germany beats Belgium 2-1 to win the European Championship. On the same day, Dad’s Army actor John Laurie dies aged 83.

1983: Pope John Paul II holds a private meeting with the founder of Solidarity, Lech Walesa, while on a visit to Poland.

1985: An Air India passenger jet disintegrates in mid-air off the coast of Ireland when a bomb on board planted by Sikh extremists explodes, killing all 329 people on board.

1990: Buddy Holly’s Gibson acoustic guitar sells for £139,658 at Sotherby’s.

1991: Mazda becomes the first Japanese car to win the Le Mans 24 hour race.

1992: New York crime boss John Gotti is sentenced to life imprisonment with no chance of parole for racketeering and five counts of murder. On the same day, Yitzhak Rabin wins the Israeli parliamentary election.

1993: Lorena Gallo Bobbitt amputates abusive husband John Wayne Bobbitt’s penis. On the same day, Nigeria’s military dictator, General Ibrahim Babangida, annuls the result of presidential elections and halts a return to democracy.

1994: South Africa reclaims its seat at the UN. On the same day, Moshood Abiola is accused of treason and arrested after declaring himself president of Nigeria.

1995: Death of Jonas Salk, inventor of the polio vaccine, aged 80.

1996: Archbishop Desmond Tutu retires as Archbishop of Cape Town and head of the Anglican Church in South Africa.

1999: Only Fools and Horses actor Buster Merryfield dies from a brain tumour aged 78.

2004: Bob Dylan accepts an honorary doctorate of music from St Andrews University, Scotland.

2009: Chris Brown pleads guilty to one count of assault on his former girlfriend, Rihanna. He gets five years probation and is ordered to do six months community service after a last minute plea deal.

2010: Pete Quaife, bassist with The Kinks, dies aged 66.

2011: Death of actor Peter Falk aged 83.

2012: 76 monks are hospitalised in Thailand after being attacked by a swarm of bees.

2013: Death of singer Bobby “Blue” Bland aged 83.

2014: Monet’s Water Lilies is sold at auction for $54 million.

2016: Britain votes to leave the European Union. On the same day, Bluegrass artist Ralph Stanley dies aged 89. His work featured in the Coen brothers film O Brother, Where Art Thou? Also, Robert Plant and Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin are cleared by an LA court of stealing the chord progression to their song Stairway to Heaven from the track Taurus by the band Spirit.

2018: Zimbabwe President Emmerson Mnangagwa survives an assassination attempt when a blast at an election rally in Bulawayo kills two and injures nearly 50. On the same day, 12 boys and their football coach are stranded in Tham Luang Nang Non cave, Thailand, by monsoon flooding, prompting an international rescue effort. Also, Game of Thrones actors Kit Harrington and Rose Leslie marry in Scotland.

2019: Musician Dave Bartholomew dies of heart failure age 100. Many artists recorded his songs, but his partnership with Fats Domino produced some of his greatest successes including Blue Monday and Ain’t That A Shame.

BIRTHDAYS: Chris Hutchins, journalist, 81; Bryan Brown, actor, 75; Sally Geeson, actress, 72; Glenn Danzig (Anzalone), singer-songwriter, 67; Randy (Randall) Jackson, musician/record producer, 66; Frances McDormand, actress, 65; Richard Coles, reverend/musician (The Communards), 60; Steve Shelley, drummer (Sonic Youth), 60; Colin Montgomerie, golfer, 59; Jane Garvey, broadcaster, 58; Joss (Joseph) Whedon, director/screenwriter, 58; Paul ‘Bonehead’ Arthurs, guitarist (Oasis) 57; Mark Chadwick, guitarist/singer (The Levellers) 56; Zinedine Zidane, footballer/manager, 50; Selma Blair, actress, 50; Joel Edgerton, actor, 48; KT (Kate Victoria) Tunstall, singer-songwriter, 47; Patrick Viera, footballer/coach, 46; Jason Mraz, singer-songwriter, 45; Jessica Taylor (Peterson), singer, (Liberty X) 42; Melissa Rauch, actress, 42; Anthony Costa, singer (Blue) 41; (Aimee Anne) Duffy, singer-songwriter, 38; Charlie Jones, actor, 36,