It happened today – this day in history – June 6

1665: English and Portuguese armies beat Spain at the Battle of Monte Carlo.

1683: The Ashmolean Museum in Oxford opens as the world’s first university museum.

1752: A third of Moscow is destroyed in the third great fire in two weeks.

1795: Fire destroys a third of Copenhagen in Denmark.

1844: The YMCA is formed in London by George Williams.

1889: The Great Fire in Seattle destroys 25 downtown blocks.

1896: Frank Samuelsen and George Harbo leave New York harbour to row across the Atlantic; their 55 day record lasted for 114 years.

1912: Novarupta erupts in Alaska is the largest volcanic eruption of the 20th century.

1914: The first air flight out of sight of land (Scotland – Norway).

1916: The death of Yuan Shikai, ruler of much of China since 1912, causes the central government to virtually collapse.

1919: Finland declares war on the Bolsheviks.

1921: Southwark Bridge is opened to traffic by George V and Queen Mary.

1923: Edgar Wallace becomes the first British radio sports reporter, reporting on The Derby for the BBC.

1938: Father of psychology, Sigmund Freud, arrives in London.

1939: The ship MS St. Louis, carrying 907 Jewish refugees from Europe, begins sailing back to the continent after it was refused entry into America. Approximately a quarter of those on board would perish in the Holocaust.

1942: Japanese forces retreat, ending Battle of Midway.

1944: D-Day as thousands of Allied troops land on the beaches of Normandy in northern France at the start of a major offensive against the Germans.

1958: French Premier Charles de Gaulle says Algeria will always be French.

1961: The founder of analytic psychology, Carl Jung, dies aged 85.

1962: The first Beatles recording session for Parlophone takes place at EMI Studios in Abbey Road, St John’s Wood with Pete Best on drums. They record four songs including Love Me Do.

1966: James Meredith, the first black man to brave the colour bar at the University of Mississippi, is shot in the back and legs while on a civil rights march. Also, Stokely Carmichael launches the Black Power movement. On the same day, Roy Orbison’s wife, Claudette, is killed when a truck pulls out of a side road and collides with the motorbike she and her husband are riding in Gallatin, Texas.

1967: Israeli troops occupy Gaza during the second day of the Six-Day War.

1968: Senator Robert Kennedy dies from his wounds after being shot the previous night.

1975: British voters back the UK’s continued membership of the EEC by two-to-one in a nationwide referendum.

1976: Oil magnate John Paul Getty dies aged 83.


1979: Death of actor Jack Haley (Wizard of Oz – the Tin Man) aged 81.

1981: Czech teenager Hana Mandlíková beats Sylvia Hanika of Germany 6-2, 6-4 for her only French Open tennis singles crown.

1982: 30,000 Israeli troops invade Lebanon to drive out the PLO.

1983: Li Xiannian becomes President of the People’s Republic of China and Deng Xiaoping supreme commander.

1984: Nearly 300 people are killed as Indian troops storm the Golden Temple in Amritsar which is being held by Sikh militants.

1985: The body of Nazi concentration camp doctor Dr Josef Mengele is located and exhumed in Brazil.

1986: Ray Wilkins becomes the first England player tooo be sent off in a World Cup finals game when he throws the ball at Paraguayan ref Gabriel Gonzalez during a disappointing goalless draw with Morocco.

1987: 17 year-old Steffi Graf beats World No1 Martina Navratilova 6-4, 4-6, 8-6 to win the French Open tennis title.

1991: “Different Strokes” actress Dana Plato receives a six-year suspended sentence for robbing a video store. On the same day, cricketer Graeme Hick makes his test debut against the West Indies at Headingley. Also, jazz saxophonist Stan Getz dies aged 64.

1992: Monica Seles beats Steffi Graf 6-2, 3-6, 10-8 to win the French Open ladies singles tennis championship.

1994: Six detainees held in the Campsfield immigration centre in Kidlington, Oxfordshire, make their escape after a rooftop protest. On the same day, cricketer Brian Lara hits a record 501 not out in one day for Warks v Durham.

1998: Arantxa Sánchez Vicario of Spain beats Monica Seles 7-6, 0-6, 6-2 to win her third French Open tennis title.

1999: The largest jailbreak in Brazilian history at the Putim maximum security prison in Brazil – 345 prisoners run from the main gate. In the ensuing manhunt, two fugitives are killed and five innocent bystanders are accidentally jailed.

Singles chart:

  1. Everybody’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen) – Baz Luhrmann
  2. Sweet Like Chocolate – Shanks and Bigfoot
  3. Hey Boy Hey Girl – The Chemical Brothers
  4. That Don’t Impress Me Much – Shania twain
  5. Ooh La La – Wiseguys
  6. From The Heart – Another Level
  7. I Want It That Way – The Backstreet Boys
  8. Kiss Me – Sixpence None The Richer
  9. Saltwater – Chicane ft Maire Brennan
  10. Canned Heat – Jamiroquai
1999: Texas – The Hush

Album chart:

  1. By Request – Boyzone
  2. Gold: Greatest Hits – ABBA
  3. Come On Over – Shania Twain
  4. The Hush – Texas
  5. Performance And Cocktails – Stereophonics
  6. The Man Who – Travis
  7. Going For Gold: The Greatest Hits – Shed Seven
  8. Millennium – Backstreet Boys
  9. The Very Best Of: The Capitol/Reprise Years – Dean Martin
  10. Step One – Steps

2003: A High Court judge in London rules that rap lyrics should be treated as a foreign language after admitting that he is unsure of the meaning of the term ‘shizzle my nizzle’.

2005: Actress Anne Bancroft dies aged 73.

2006: Keyboards player and songwriter Billy Preston dies aged 59 of kidney failure.

2010: Marvin Isley, bassist and the youngest member of The Isley Brothers, dies aged 56 from complications arising from diabetes.

2012: U2 bass player Adam Clayton’s former personal assistant and housekeeper goes on trial accused of stealing almost £2.4m from him over a four-year period.

2013: Author Tom Sharpe dies aged 85.

2015: Barcelona beats Juventus, 3-1 to win the Champions League in Berlin. On the same day, Frankie Dettori wins The Epsom Derby on Golden Horn.

2019: Legendary New Orleans musician/singer-songwriter Dr John (Mac Rebenack) does aged 77 after a heart attack.

BIRTHDAYS: Tony Levin, bassist (King Crimson), 75; Baron David Blunkett, poitician, 74; Robert Englund, actor/director, 72; Björn Borg, tennis champion, 65; Mike Gatting, cricketer, 64; Amanda Pays (Bersen), actress, 62; Josie Lawrence, actress/comedian, 62; Steve Vai, guitarist, 61; Tom Araya, bassist/vocalist (Slayer) 60; Jason Isaacs, actor, 58; Paul Giamatti, actor, 54; Sonya Walger, actress, 47; Carl Barat, singer-songwriter (The Libertines) 43; Jeremy Gara, drummer (The Arcade Fire) 43; Ross MacDonald, bass/keyboards (The 1975) 32.