It happened today – this day in history – November 20

1272: Edward I is proclaimed King of England after the death of his father, Henry III. He would take two years to return to England from the Ninth Crusade.

1755: William Pitt the Elder resigns.

1805: Ludwin van Beethoven’s only opera, “Fidelio”, premieres in Vienna.

1815: In the Second Treaty of Paris, it is agreed that France will pay indemnities after the Battle of Waterloo, ending the Napoleonic Wars. On the same day, Russia, Prussia, Austria and England sign an alliance “for the maintenance of peace in Europe”.

1817: The first Seminole War begins in Florida.

1866: French inventor Pierre Lallement patents the rotary crank bicycle.

1886: Arthur Conan Doyle’s first Sherlock Holmes story, “A Study in Scarlet” is accepted by publisher Ward and Lock with a payment of £25.

1889: Gustav Mahler’s 1st Symphony premieres in Budapest and is not well received.

1903: Gunfighter Tom Horn is hanged aged 42.

1906: George Bernard Shaw’s play “Doctor’s Dilemma” premieres in London.

1910: Revolution breaks out in Mexico, led by Francisco I. Madero. On the same day, Russian author Leo Tolstoy dies aged 82.

1911: Gustav Mahler’s “Das Lied von der Erde” (Song of the Earth) premieres in Munich.

1914: The US State Department starts requiring photographs for passports.

1917: The first successful use of tanks in battle as Britain uses the new technology to break through German lines at the Battle of Cambrai. On the same day, Ukraine is declared a republic.

1923: Garrett Morgan patents his traffic signal design.

1936: Jose Antonio Primo de Rivera, founder of the Falange in Spain is killed by a republican execution squad.

1940: Hungary, Romania and Slovakia join the Axis powers.

1942: The British 8th Army recaptures Benghazi, Libya.

1945: Twenty of Germany’s Nazi leaders go on trial in Nuremberg charged with war crimes.

1947: Princess Elizabeth marries Lt Philip Mountbatten in Westminster Abbey.

1951: More than 1,000 families of British servicemen begin moving out of the Suez Canal zone town of Ismailia in Egypt. On the same day, Snowdonia becomes a British National Park.

1960: Jack Brabham finishes fourth in the season-ending US Grand Prix to retain his Formula 1 World Drivers Championship.


1961: Bob Dylan started recording his debut album over two days at Columbia Recording Studios in New York.

1962:The USSR agrees to remove bombers from Cuba, and the US lifts its blockade.

1965: The UN Security council calls for a boycott of Rhodesia.

1972: Two British soldiers are killed by a booby trap bomb in Cullyhanna, Co. Armagh.

1974: Keith Moon of The Who collapsed during a concert at the Cow Palace in San Francisco after his drink was spiked with horse tranquilliser. 19 year-old Scott Halpin who was in the audience, volunteered to replace him on drums for three numbers.

1975: Prince Juan Carlos prepares to take the reins of power in Spain following the death of General Franco. On the same day, Bay City Rollers singer Les McKeown is found not guilty of causing the death of a 76-year old woman he had hit with his car the previous May in Edinburgh. Witnesses said that Euphemia Clunie was walking across the road and had changed direction four times. McKeown is convicted of driving recklessly, fined £150 pounds and banned from driving for a year.

1978: Former Liberal Party leader Jeremy Thorpe is accused in court of plotting to kill his former lover Norman Scott.

1980: United Nations mediator Olof Palme makes his first unsuccessful peace shuttle between Tehran and Baghdad.

1981: Anatoly Karpov retains the world chess championship.

1986: Afghanistan President Babrak Karmal flees.

1988: Singles chart:

  1. First Time – Robin Beck
  2. Need You Tonight – INXS
  3. Missing You – Chris De Burgh
  4. Twist And Shout – Salt N Pepa
  5. Stand Up For Your Love Rights – Yazz
  6. The Clairvoyant – Iron Maiden
  7. Left To My Own Devices – Pet Shop Boys
  8. Real Gone Kid – Deacon Blue
  9. He Ain’t No Competition – Brother Beyond
  10. Je Ne Sais Pas Pourquoi – Kylie Minogue
1988: Yazz – Wanted

Album chart:

  1. Kylie – Kylie Minogue
  2. Private Collection – Cliff Richard
  3. Wanted – Yazz
  4. Money For Nothing – Dire Straits
  5. Greatest Hits – Human League
  6. The Ultimate Connection – Bryan Ferry and Roxy Music
  7. The Memphis Sessions – Wet Wet Wet
  8. Soft Metal – Various Artists
  9. The Premier Collection – Various Artists
  10. Smash Hits Party 88 – Various Artists

1990: Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, fails to win outright victory in her battle for the leadership of the Conservative Party, finishing four votes short of the 56 required after 16 MPs abstain.

1992: Fire rages through Windsor Castle.

1993: Winnie Mandela’s bodyguard and chauffeur are murdered in South Aftrica.

1994: The Angolan government and UNITA rebels sign the Lusaka Protocol in Zambia, ending 19 years of civil war.

1995: Diana Princess of Wales speaks openly for the first time about her separation from the Prince of Wales in a controversial interview with Martin Bashir for the BBC’s Panorama.

1997: Iraq’s Revolution Command Council formally endorses an agreement, arranged by Russia, that enables UN weapons inspection teams to resume operations in Iraq.

2006: Director/screenwriter Robert Altman dies aged 81.

2019: Prince Andrew announces he is stepping back from public duties after outcry from disastrous interview on his friendship with Jeffry Epstein.

BIRTHDAYS: Estelle Parsons, actress, 93; Joe Biden, President-elect, 78; Norman Greenbaum, singer-songwriter, 78; Veronica Hamel, actress, 77; Ray Stiles, bassist (Mud) 74; Joe Walsh, guitarist/singer-songwriter (The Eagles), 73; Gary Green, guitarist (Gentle Giant) 70; Bo Derek (Mary Collins), actress, 64; Jim Brown, drummer (UB40) 63; Sean Young, actress, 61; Gail Ann Dorsey, bassist, 58; Ming-Na Wen, actress, 57; Mike Diamond, rapper (The Beastie Boys) 55; Joel McHale, actor, 49; Kimberley Walsh, singer (Girls Aloud) 39; Jared Followill, bassist, (Kings of Leon) 34.


Mick Ferris

Editor Email: [email protected]