It happened today – this day in history – November 15

1492: Christopher Columbus makes the first recorded reference to tobacco.

1515: Thomas Wolsey is invested as a cardinal.

1532: Pope Clemens VII tells Henry VIII to end his relationship with Anne Boleyn.

1630: Death of astronomer Johannes Kepler aged 58.

1688: Prince Willem III’s army lands at Torbay annd the ‘Glorious Revolution’ begins.

1708: Birth of future prime minister William Pitt the Elder in London.

1720: Pirates Anne Bonny, Mary Read and Calico Jack (John Rackham) are captured by Capt Jonathan Barnet and brought to Spanish Town, Jamaica, for trial.

1738: Birth of astronomer William Herschel, discoverer of Uranus.

1832: Premiere of Felix Mendelssohn’s “Symphony No. 5 (Reformation)”.

1837: Isaac Pitman introduces his shorthand system.

1882: HMS Flirt destroys the village of Asaba in Niger.

1887: Birth of artist Georgia O’Keefe in Wisconsin.

1899: Morning Post reporter Winston Churchill is captured by Boers in Natal.

1901: James J Jeffries TKOs Gus Ruhlin in Round 6 for the heavyweight boxing title in San Francisco.

1902: King Leopold II of Belgium narrowly escapes an assassination attempt by an Italian anarchist.

1904: King Gillette patents the Gillette razor blade.

1914: Benito Mussolini founds the newspaper Il Populo d’Italia.

1920: The League of Nations holds its first meeting in Geneva.

1922: The Conservatives under Andrew Bonar Law win the general election

1939: Nazis begin the mass murder of Jews in Warsaw.

1940: German planes destroy most of Coventry.

1951: Anti-government rebels kill 11 people in an attack on a rubber plantation in Malaya.

1954: Death of actor Lionel Barrymore (Blythe) aged 76.

1958: Film star Tyrone Power dies from a heart attack aged 44.

1959: Johnny and the Moondogs (The Beatles) play in the final heat of the ‘TV Star Search’ competition at The Hippodrome Theatre, Manchester. Judging was done by the volume of applause each group received when called back onto the stage at the end of the night. Since the band had no money to stay overnight in Manchester, they were forced to head back to Liverpool before they were called back onto the stage.


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1965: Craig Breedlove sets the land speed record at 600.601mph.

1969: Janis Joplin was arrested at a gig in Tampa, Florida, after badmouthing a policeman. She became upset after police moved into the hall forcing fans to move back to their seats. As the singer left the stage she confronted a detective calling him a ‘son of a bitch’ and saying she would kick his face in. She was released on $504 bail. On the same day, the first colour television commercial in the UK, for Birdseye peas, airs on ATV in the Midlands during an episode of Thunderbirds and Liverpool’s 2-0 victory over West Ham at Anfield is the first match to be transmitted in colour on the BBC’s Match Of The Day. Also, an estimated 2 million people take part in the Vietnam War Moratorium demonstration across the United States.

1976: The Syrian army conquers Beirut.

1977: Princess Anne gives birth to her first child, Peter Phillips – the first royal baby to be born a commoner for more than 500 years.

1978: Harold Pinter’s “Betrayal” premieres in London.

1979: Sir Anthony Blunt, art advisor to the Queen, is exposed in Parliament as the fourth man in the 1950s Soviet spy ring that included Burgess, McLean and Philby. His knighthood is revoked. On the same day, a package from Unabomber Ted Kaczynsky begins smoking in the cargo hold of a flight from Chicago to Washington, forcing the plane to make an emergency landing. Also, Iran cancels all contracts with US oil companies.

1983: The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is proclaimed. On the same day, Dad’s Army actor John Le Mesurier dies of cirrhosis of the liver aged 71.

1985: Britain and the Republic of Ireland sign a deal giving Dublin a role in Northern Ireland for the first time in more than 60 years. On the same day, a research assistant is injured when a package from the Unabomber addressed to a University of Michigan professor explodes.

1986: Oxford United players were told that their coach home would leave at 5.30pm on the dot after their First Division match at Queens Park Rangers – and it did, while four Oxford players – Jeremy Charles, Les Phillips, Peter Rhoades-Brown and leading scorer John Aldridge were standing by the coach signing autographs! They had to get a lift home with supporters.

1987: Williams driver Nelson Piquet retires from the Australian Grand Prix at Adelaide with break trouble but wins his third Formula 1 World Drivers Championship.

1989: Test Cricket debuts of Waqar Younis and Sachin Tendulkar as Pakistan take on India in Karachi..

1990: Milli Vanilli producer Frank Farian held a press conference to confirm the rumours that the two members of the group Rob and Fab had not sung on any of their hit records.

1992: Singles chart:

  1. Would I Lie To You – Charles and Eddie
  2. End Of The Road – Boyz II Men
  3. People Everyday – Arrested Development
  4. I Will Always Love You – Whitney Houston
  5. Never Let Her Slip Away – Undercover
  6. Boss Drum – The Shamen
  7. Invisible Touch – Genesis
  8. Be My Baby – Vanessa Paradis
  9. Temptation (Remix) – Heaven 17
  10. Run To You – Rage
1992: The Shamen – Boss Drum

Album chart:

  1. Greatest Hits 1965-1992 – Cher
  2. Glittering Prize 81/92 – Simple Minds
  3. Timeless (The Classics) – Michael Bolton
  4. Greatest Hits – Gloria Estefan
  5. Keep The Faith – Bon Jovi
  6. Automatic For The People – REM
  7. Gold: Greatest Hits – ABBA
  8. Erotica – Madonna
  9. God’s Great Banana Skin – Chris Rea
  10. Boss Drum – The Shamen

1995: Space shuttle Atlantis docks with the orbiting Russian space station Mir.

1998: Britain and the US call back their bombers after Iraq agrees to allow UN weapons inspectors back into the country.

2002: Hu Jintao becomes the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China.

2013: Sony launches the Playstation Four, selling one million units on the first day.

2015: France launches air strikes on Isis stronghold Raqqa in Syria in the wake of the terror attack on Paris.

2016: Jazz and blues pianist, singer, and songwriter Mose Allison dies aged 89.

2017: The Zimbabwean Army detains Robert Mugabe and his family and appoints sacked Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa as interim president. On the same day, Leonardo da Vinci’s painting “Salvator Mundi” sells for $450.3 million at auction in New York, a world record for any artwork.

2018: David Hockney’s “Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures)” sells for $90.3 million in New York, a record for a living artist. On the same day, art experts in England authenticate two bronzes of men riding panthers as Michelangelo’s only surviving bronze works.

2019: Iran shuts down its internet for five days to suppress news of national protests against higher gas prices beginning the worst unrest in the country for 40 years. On the same day, Pakistan becomes the first country to introduce a vaccine against typhoid, targeting 10 million children.

BIRTHDAYS: Petula Clark, singer, 89; Sam Waterston, actor, 81; Daniel Barenboim, pianist/conductor, 79; Anni-Frid Lyngstad, singer (ABBA) 76; Roger Donaldson, director, 76; Jimmy Neighbour, footballer, 71; Beverley D’Angelo, actress, 70; Alexander O’Neal, singer, 67; Jay Bennett, guitarist, (Wilco) 58; Christian “Flake” Lorenz, keyboardist (Rammstein) 55; Gustavo Poyet, football manager, 54; Dom Joly, comedian/writer, 54; Jonny Lee Miller, actor, 49; Chad Kroeger, singer/guitarist (Nickelback) 47; Peter Philips, grandson of The Queen, 44; Krysten Ritter, actress/director, 40; Jared O’Mara, MP, 40; Shailene Woodley, actress, 30.

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