It happened today – this day in history – May 8

1521: Parliament of Worms installs an edict against Martin Luther.

1541: Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto and his expedition discover the Mississippi River.

1660: Parliament declares Charles Stuart to be King Charles II.

1792: The US establishes the military draft.

1835: The first installment of Hans Christian Andersen’s “Fairy Tales” is published in Denmark.

1840: Alexander Wolcott patents the photographic process.

1861: Richmond, Virginia, is named capital of the Confederacy.

1899: Ernest Rutherford publishes his discovery of two different kinds of radiation (Alpha and Beta Particles).

1902: Mount Pelée on the island of Martinique erupts, wiping out the city of Saint-Pierre, killing 30,000 and leaving only two survivors.

1903: Death of painter Paul Gaughin aged 54.

1907: Tommy Burns retains his world heavyweight boxing title after beating “Philadelphia” Jack O’Brien on points in 20 rounds.

1916: Irishmen Eamon Kent, Michael Mallin, Con Colbert and Sean Houston are executed by British authorities following the Easter Rising at Kilmainham Gaol, Dublin.

1919: Edward George Honey first proposes the idea of a moment of silence to commemorate The Armistice of World War I, which leads to the creation of Remembrance Day.

1921: Sweden abolishes capital punishment.

1933: Mahatma Gandhi begins a 21-day fast in protest against British oppression in India.

1945: VE-Day as General Wilhelm Keitel formally surrenders to the Allies represented by the United States, the UK, France and the Soviet Union in Berlin.

1956: John Osborne’s “Look Back in Anger” premieres in London.

1962: Oskar Schindler and his wife Emilie are honored for saving 1200 Jews during WWII, in a ceremony on the Avenue of the Righteous, Jerusalem.

1965: The filming for the promotion film of Bo Dylan’s Subterranean Homesick Blues took place at the side of the Savoy Hotel in London.

1967: Muhammad Ali is indicted for refusing induction into the US Army.

1969: John Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr signed a business management contract with Allen Klein and his company ABKCO. Paul McCartney refused.

1970: The Beatles final album Let It Be was finally released. Recorded before Abbey Road, the fraught sessions from January 1969 were worked on by producer Phil Spector who edited them and overdubbed orchestra and choir, particularly on The Long and Winding Road, which infuriated Paul McCartney.

1974: Organist Graham Bond committed suicide after throwing himself under a London tube train at Finsbury Park station, aged 36.

1976: Daytime Radio 1 DJ Johnny Walker announced he was quitting the station after being told he must pretend to like The Bay City Rollers. On the same day, terrorist Ulrike Meinhof commits suicide in prison in West Germany.

1980: The World Health Organization announces smallpox has been eradicated.

1982: Formula 1 driver Gilles Villeneuve dies in a crash during practice for the Belgian Grand Prix.

1984: The Thames Barrier is completed. On the same day, the Soviet Union announces it will not participate in Los Angeles Summer Olympics in retaliation for the American boycott of the 1980 Moscow Olympics.

1987: Gary Hart quits the US democratic presidential race due to affair with Donna Rice.

1988: Francois Mitterrand is elected President of France.

1993: Mark Knopfler of Dire Straits received an honorary music doctorate from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne. On the same day, Lennox Lewis beats Tony Tucker in 12 rounds for heavyweight boxing title.

1994: Death of actor George Peppard aged 65.

1996: A judge in LA ruled against Pamela Anderson and Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee in their bid to keep Penthouse magazine from publishing still photos from an X-rated home movie that was stolen from their home.

1999: Death of actor Dirk Bogarde aged 78.

2006: The Rolling Stones called off their forthcoming European tour when guitarist Keith Richards underwent emergency brain surgery after falling out of a coconut tree on holiday in Fiji.

2007: A new Northern Ireland Executive is formed with Ian Paisley (Democratic Unionist Party) as First Minister and Martin McGuinness (Sinn Féin) as Deputy First Minister.

2008: Country artist Eddy Arnold died of natural causes, one week before his 90th birthday. On the same day, Dmitry Medvedev appoints Vladimir Putin as Russian Prime Minister.

2012: Dmitry Medvedev is confirmed as Russian Prime Minister by the State Duma, after being nominated by Vladimir Putin.

2013: Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi receives a four year prison sentence for fraud. On the same day, Sir Alex Ferguson announces his intention to retire as manager of Manchester United at the end of the season.

2016: Sadiq Khan is elected Mayor of London.

2018: President Donald Trump pulls the US out of the multilateral Iran nuclear deal.

BIRTHDAYS: David Attenborough, naturalist/broadcaster, 94; Phyllida Law, actress, 88; Jack Charlton, footballer/manager, 85; Terry Neill, former footballler/manager, 78; Paul Samwell-Smith, bassist/producer (The Yardbirds) 77; Bill Legend, drummer (T Rex), 76; Keith Jarrett, jazz pianist, 75; Chris Frantz, drummer (Talking Heads), 69; Philip Bailey, singer (Earth, Wind & Fire), 69; Alex Van Halen, drummer (Van Halen), 69; Terry Christian, broadcaster, 57; Dave Rowntree, drummer (Blur), 56; Enrique Iglesias, singer, 45; H (Ian Watkins, singer (Steps), 44; Martha Wainwright, singer/songwriter, 44; Joe Bonamassa, guitarist, 43; Stephen Amell, actor, 39; Matt Willis, bassist (Busted), 35.

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Mick Ferris

Editor Email: [email protected]