It happened today – this day in history – November 21

1620: The Pilgrim Fathers reach Provincetown Harbour, Massachusetts.

1694: French writer and philosopher Voltaire (Francois-Marie Arouet) is born in Paris.

1695: Death of composer Henry Purcell aged 36.

1759: The Prussian army surrenders to Austrians at the Battle of Maxen.

1783: Jean-François Pilâtre de Rozier and Marquis d’Arlandes make the first manned free balloon flight in a Montgolfier balloon.

1806: Napoleon bans all trade with Britain.

1818: Russia’s Tsar Alexander I petitions for a Jewish state in Palestine.

1847: The steamer “Phoenix” is lost on Lake Michigan with the loss of 200 lives.

1898: Surrealist painter René Magritte, is born in Belgium.

1906: China prohibits the opium trade.

1914: The British army conquers Basra.

1918: The German High Seas Fleet of five battlecruisers, nine battleships, seven cruisers and 49 destroyers surrender to the British Grand Fleet and are shepherded into the Firth of Forth.

1931: The horror film “Frankenstein” is released, starring Boris Karloff as the monster.

1938: Nazi forces occupy western Czechoslovakia and declare the inhabitants to be German citizens.

1941: German troops occupy Rostov-on-Don, Southern Russia.

1945: Premiere of Benjamin Britten’s 2nd String quartet in C.

1955: RCA Records purchase Elvis Presley’s recording contract from Sam Phillips at Sun Records for $35,000.

1960: The Beatles play at the Kaiserkeller Club in Hamburg, without George Harrison, who had been deported earlier in the day for being underage.

1962: The Chinese People’s Liberation Army declares a unilateral ceasefire in the Sino-Indian War.

1963: US President John F Kennedy flies to Texas.

1964: The Verrazano-Narrows suspension bridge, the longest in the world at the time, opens in New York.


1967: The number of animals slaughtered in the foot-and-mouth epidemic reaches a record high of 134,000. on the same day, it is announced that Peterborough United will be relegated from the 3rd to the 4th Division at the end of the 1967/68 season after being found guilty of financial irregularities.

1970: General Hafez al-Assad becomes Prime Minister of Syria following military coup.

1971: Indian troops aided by the Mukti Bahini, Bengali guerrillas, defeat the army of Pakistan at the Battle of Garibpur.

1973: President Richard Nixon’s attorney, J Fred Buzhardt, reveals the presence of an 18½ minute gap in a White House tape recording related to Watergate.

1974: Two IRA bombs explode in central Birmingham pubs the Tavern In The Town and the Mulberry Bush, killing 21 and injuring over 180. On the same day, Wilson Pickett was arrested in New York City for possession of a dangerous weapon after he pulled a gun during an argument. Also, Peter Shilton joins Stoke City for a £325,000 transfer fee, a world record for a goalkeeper.

1977: The first flight of Concorde from London to New York. On the same day, playing for Barnet against Chelmsford City, 37-year old Jimmy Greaves is sent off for using foul and abusive language. He refused to leave the pitch so the referee abandons the match.

1979: A mob in the Pakistani capital Islamabad burns the US Embassy to the ground in a five-hour attack in which a US marine is killed.

1980: Eagles drummer Don Henley is arrested after a naked 16-year old girl is found at his home in Los Angeles suffering from a drug overdose. On the same day, a fire at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas kills 84.

1985: The Geneva summit between the US and the Soviet Union ends in optimism but with no agreement on the “Star Wars” space defence system.

1986: Suriname army leader Desi Bouterse massacres Moiwana village.

1989: TV cameras are permitted in the House of Commons.

1990: Mick Jagger marries Jerry Hall in Bali. The marriage was declared ‘null and void’ on August 13, 1999 after a judge ruled that the six- hour ceremony in Bali was never registered. On the same day, French President François Mitterrand voices support for a proposed UN resolution that would authorize the use of force in the Persian Gulf.

1995: The United States brokers a peace settlement for Bosnia Herzegovina to be enforced by 60,000 NATO troops. On the same day, Led Zeppelin manager Peter Grant dies from a heart attack aged 60.

2002: NATO invites Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia to become members.

2003: The Egmond acoustic guitar on which George Harrison learned how to play, purchased by his father for £3.10s, fetches £276,000 at a London auction. On the same day, Record producer Phil Spector appears before a California court and is formally charged with the murder of actress Lana Clarkson. He pleads not guilty and is released on £1million bail.

2004: Singles chart:

  1. I’ll Stand By You – Girls Aloud
  2. Lose My Breath – Destiny’s Child
  3. If There’s Any Justice – Lemar
  4. What You Waiting For – Gwen Stefani
  5. Room On The 3rd Floor – McFly
  6. Just Lose It – Eminem
  7. Vertigo – U2
  8. Baby It’s You – Jo Jo ft Bow Wow
  9. Confessions Part II – Usher
  10. Car Wash – Christina Aguilera ft Missy
2004: Eminem – Encore

Album chart:

  1. Encore – Eminem
  2. Greatest Hits – Robbie Williams
  3. Greatest Hits: My Perogative – Britney Spears
  4. Il Divo – Il Divo
  5. Destiny Fulfilled – Destiny’s Child
  6. Best Of – Blue
  7. Greatest Hits – Shania Twain
  8. 10 Years Of Hits – Ronan Keating
  9. Hopes And Fears – Keane
  10. Allow Us To Be Frank – Westlife

2009: Pete Doherty is arrested on suspicion of possessing a controlled drug, moments after avoiding a prison sentence at a court-hearing.

2012: Stone Roses guitarist John Squire’s art studio burns down at his home in Macclesfield. On the same day, Chelsea Manager Roberto Di Matteo is sacked and replaced by Rafael Benítez.

2017: Robert Mugabe’s resignation after 37 years in power is read out in Zimbabwe’s parliament during impeachment proceedings. On the same day, actor/singer David Cassidy dies of liver failure aged 67 and actor Rodney Bewes dies aged 79. Also, Mt Agung on the Indonesian island of Bali erupts,

BIRTHDAYS: Juliet Mills, actress, 80; Jacques Laffite, racing driver, 78; Goldie Hawn, actress, 76; Lonnie Jordan, singer-songwriter (War) 73; John “Rabbit” Bundrick, keyboards, 73; Lorna Luft, singer/actress, 69; Eamon Coghlan, athlete, 69; Alan Smith, footballer/commentator, 59; Liza Tarbuck, actress/broadcaster, 57; Bjork (Gudmundsdottir), singer-songwriter, 56; Margret Ornolfsdottir, keyboards, (The Sugarcubes) 54; Alex James, bassist (Blur) 53; Lissie (Elisabeth Maurus), singer-songwriter, 39; Carly Rae Jepsen, singer-songwriter, 36; Fabian Delh, footballer, 32; Lewis Dunk, footballer, 30; Conor Maynard, singer, 29.