It happened today – this day in history – November 18

1307: William Tell reputedly shoots an apple off his son’s head with a crossbow in Switzerland.

1477: First English dated printed book “Dictes & Sayengis of the Phylosophers” by William Caxton.

1497: Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama reaches the Cape of Good Hope.

1626: St. Peter’s Basilica is consecrated, replacing an earlier basilica on the same site.

1686: Charles Francois Felix operates on King Louis XIV of France’s anal fistula after practising the surgery on several peasants first.

1738: France and Austria sign a peace treaty.

1745: Bonnie Prince Charlie’s Jacobite troops occupy Carlisle.

1820: Antarctica is sighted by US Navy Capt Nathaniel B Palmer.

1905: George Bernard Shaw’s “Major Barbara” premieres in London. On the same day, fixture congestion means Chelsea are forced to play two matches in one day. The first team beat Burnley 1-0 in a Second Division game while the reserves had to take on Crystal Palace in a qualifying round of the FA Cup, losing 7-1.

1906: Anarchists bomb St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome.

1909: The US invades Nicaragua.

1916: General Douglas Haig finally calls off the first Battle of the Somme after more than 1 million soldiers had been killed or wounded.

1918: Latvia declares independence from Russia. On the same day, Belgian troops re-enter Brussels.

1922: Death of French author Marcel Proust aged 51.

1926: George Bernard Shaw accepts the Nobel Prize for Literature but refuses the prize money, saying: “I can forgive Alfred Nobel for inventing dynamite, but only a fiend in human form could have invented the Nobel Prize.”

1928: Release of Walt Disney’s first sound cartoon Steamboat Willie with Mickey Mouse.

1929: An earthquake in the mid Atlantic breaks the transatlantic cable in 28 places.

1932: Wallace Beery and Fredric March win the Oscar in the first ever tie for Best Actor at the fifth Academy Awards.

1936: Germany and Italy recognize the Spanish government of General Franco.

1939: The IRA explodes three bombs in Piccadilly Circus.

1941: British troops attack Tobruk, North Africa.

1943: 444 British bombers attack Berlin.

1950: South Korean President Syngman Rhee is forced to end mass executions.

1951: British troops occupy Ismailiya, Egypt.

1956: Morocco gains independence. On the same day, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev tells Western ambassadors: “We will bury you” at a reception at the Polish embassy in Moscow.


1961: US President John F Kennedy sends 18,000 military advisors to South Vietnam.

1965: Singles chart:

  1. Get Off My Cloud – The Rolling Stones
  2. The Carnival Is Over – The Seekers
  3. Yesterday Man – Chris Andrews
  4. Tears – Ken Dodd
  5. My Generation – The Who
  6. 1-2-3 – Len Barry
  7. It’s My Life – The Animals
  8. Here It Comes Again – The Fortunes
  9. Evil Hearted You – The Yardbirds
  10. Positively 4th Street – Bob Dylan

1967: A ban on the movement of farm animals across the whole of England and Wales comes into effect in a bid to stop the spread of foot and mouth disease. On the same day, the government devalues the pound prompting prime minister Harold Wilson to say the immortal phrase “this will not affect the pound in your pocket” in a TV broadcast.

1970: Joe Frazier KOs Bob Foster in Round 2 for the heavyweight boxing title.

1972: Guitarist Danny Whitten dies of a heroin overdose aged 29.

1976: Spain’s parliament establishes democracy after 37 years of dictatorship.

1978: The bodies of 914 members of the People’s Temple Christian Church including cult leader Jim Jones are found in Guyana after a mass suicide.

1983: Argentina announces its ability to produce enriched uranium for nuclear weapons.

1987: 31 people die in a fire at Kings Cross station.

1989: More than 50,000 people take to the streets of Sofia in Bulgaria demanding political reform.

1991: Church envoy Terry Waite is freed by Islamic extremists who kidnapped him in Beirut in 1987. American Thomas Sutherland is also released. On the same day, the Croatian city of Vukovar surrenders to the Yugoslav People’s Army and allied Serb paramilitary forces after an 87-day siege.

1997: Gary Glitter is arrested by British police in a child porn probe.

2000: Michael Douglas marries Catherine Zeta Jones in New York. On the same day, Queen guitarist Brian May marries EastEnders actress Anita Dobson in London.

2002: United Nations weapons inspectors led by Hans Blix arrive in Iraq.

2003: US President, George W Bush makes a state visit to the UK. On the same day, composer and orchestral arranger Michael Kamen dies of a heart attack in London aged 55. Also, Police raid Michael Jackson’s Neverland ranch following allegations of sexual abuse of a 12-year old boy. Also, the Local Government Act 2003, repealing the controversial anti-gay amendment Section 28, becomes effective.

2009: The Republic of Ireland are eliminated from the World Cup when all square during extra time of the play off second leg against France in Paris, Thierry Henry handles the ball twice before passing to William Gallas who scores. Attempts to get the match replayed are rejected by FIFA and it emerges years later that FIFA made a €5million payment to the Irish FA to prevent legal action being taken against them over the incident.

2011: Former Filipino president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is arrested and held at Veterans Memorial Medical Center in Quezon City under charges of electoral sabotage.

2015: French police raid a terrorist cell in Saint Denis, killing two, including the leader of the Paris terror attacks, Abdelhamid Abaaoud. On the same day, New Zealand rugby star Jonah Lomu dies aged 40.

2016: Singer Sharon Jones of the Dap-Kings, dies after a battle with pancreatic cancer at the age of 60.

2016: Olly Murs – 24 Hrs

Album chart:

  1. 24 Hrs – Olly Murs
  2. Long Live The Angels – Emeli Sande
  3. Together – Michael Ball & Alfie Boe
  4. Just Fabulous Rock ‘n’ Roll – Cliff Richard
  5. The Wonder Of You – Elvis Presley
  6. The Heavy Entertainment Show – Robbie Williams
  7. You Want It Darker – Leonard Cohen
  8. Nobody But Me – Michael Buble
  9. Back From The Edge – James Arthur
  10. Christmas – Michael Buble

2017: AC/DC guitarist/songwriter Malcolm Young dies aged 64 after suffering from dementia.

2018: American missionary John Allen Chau is killed on the forbidden North Sentinel Island in the Bay of Bengal by one of world’s most isolated tribes.

BIRTHDAYS: Brenda Vaccaro, actress, 82; Margaret Atwood, author, 82; Con (Conleth) Cluskey, singer/guitarist (The Bachelors) 80; Linda Evans, actress, 79; Herman Rarebell, drummer (The Scorpions) 72; Graham Parker, singer-songwriter, 71; Oscar Nunez, actor, 63; Cindy Blackman Santana, drummer, 62; Elizabeth Perkins, actress, 61; Kim Wilde (Smith), singer, 61; Steven Moffat, TV writer, 60; Kirk Hammett, guitarist (Metallica) 59; Peter Schmeichel, MBE, goalkeeper, 58; Owen Wilson, actor, 53; Megyn Kelly, journalist, 51; Chloë Sevigny, actress, 47; Ant McPartlin, TV personallity, 46; Matthew Baynton, actor, 41; Damon Wayans, actor, 39; Jason Demetriou, footballer, 34; Mark Albrighton, footballer, 32.