It happened today – this day in history – October 29

539BC: King Cyrus “the Great” of Persia marches into Babylon, freeing Jewish captives and allowing them to return home.

1390: The first trial for witchcraft in Paris.

1618: Sir Walter Raleigh is beheaded for allegedly conspiring against James I of England.

1787: Mozart’s “Don Giovanni” (libretto by Lorenzo Da Ponte) premieres at the National Theatre of Bohemia in Prague.

1859: Spain declares war on Morocco.

1863: The Red Cross forms.

1914: Turkish warships storm the Black Sea.

1918: German sailors refuse to obey orders to fight British naval forces and lead a revolt in the naval ports of Wilhelmshaven.

1923: Mustafa Kemal Ataturk officially declares Turkey a republic.

1929: Wall Street crashes triggering the “Great Depression”.

1942: Nazis murder 16,000 Jews in Pinsk, Soviet Union.

1950: Chancellor of the Exchequer (Minister of Finance) Stafford Cripps resigns.

1954: Colonel Abdel Nasser disbands Muslim Brotherhood.

1956: The Suez Crisis erupts into war as Israel invades the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula, followed by a planned airborne assault by France and Britain.

1957: A hand grenade explodes in Israel’s Knesset.

1958: Novelist Boris Pasternak refuses the Nobel prize for literature.

1960: In his first professional fight, Cassius Clay beats Tunney Hunsaker on points in six rounds in his home town of Louisville, Kentucky.

1964: The United Republic of Tanganyika & Zanzibar is renamed The United Republic of Tanzania.

Singles chart:


  1. (There’s) Always Something There To Remind Me – Sandie Shaw
  2. Oh Pretty Woman – Roy Orbison
  3. The Wedding – Julie Rogers
  4. When You Walk In The Room – The Searchers
  5. Where Did Our Love Go – The Supremes
  6. Walk Away – Matt Monro
  7. We’re Through – The Hollies
  8. Twelfth Of Never – Cliff Richard
  9. One Way Love – Cliff Bennett and the Rebel Rousers
  10. I’m Into Something Good – Herman’s Hermits

1967: Petty criminal Jack “The Hat” McVitie is supposedly murdered by the Kray twins, leading to their eventual imprisonment and downfall.

1967: Scott Walker – Scott

Album chart:

  1. Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band – The Beatles
  2. The Sound Of Music – Original Soundtrack
  3. Best Of The Beach Boys Vol 2 – The Beach Boys
  4. Breakthrough – Various Artists
  5. British Motown Chartbusters – Various Artists
  6. Universal Soldier – Donovan
  7. Scott – Scott Walker
  8. Best Of The Beach Boys – The Beach Boys
  9. Release Me – Engelbert Humperdinck
  10. Walker Brothers Story – The Walker Brothers

1971: Iconic guitarist Duane Allman is killed when he loses control of his motorcycle on a Macon, Georgia street while trying to avoid a tractor-trailer.

1975: General Franco’s 36-year dictatorship of Spain is effectively ended with the announcement that heir designate Prince Carlos will take over as provisional head of state. On the same day, ‘Yorkshire Ripper’ Peter Sutcliffe kills his first victim, Wilma McCann.

1982: Australian Lindy Chamberlain is found guilty of the murder of her nine-week-old daughter Azaria after a jury dismisses her claim that a dingo took the baby while on a visit to Ayres Rock in Northern Territory.

1986: Prime minister Margaret Thatcher opens the final stretch of London’s Orbital Motorway, the M25.

1987: Thomas “Hitman” Hearns wins an unprecedented fourth different weight boxing title.

1996: The Stone Roses split up.

1997: Iraq’s Revolution Command Council announces that it will no longer allow US citizens and US aircraft to serve with UN arms inspection teams.

1998: 77-year old John Glenn becomes the oldest person to go into space aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery.

1999: A massive cyclone sweeps through the state of Orissa in eastern India, killing up to 10,000 people and leaving many more homeless.

2003: Conservative Party leader, Iain Duncan Smith, resigns.

2015: China announces the end of their one-child policy after 35 years.

2018: Far right politician Jair Bolsonaro wins Brazil’s presidential election. On the same day, German Chancellor Angela Merkel announces she will not seek re-election in 2021.

2019: Lebanon’s Prime Minister Saad Hariri resigns after two weeks of nationwide protests during an economic crisis.

2020: Jeremy Corbyn is suspended from the Labour Party after saying a report into anti-semitism in the party was “overstated”.

BIRTHDAYS: Denny Laine, (Brian Hines) guitarist/singer (The Moody Blues/Wings) 77; Richard Dreyfuss, actor, 74; Kate Jackson, actress, 73; Lee Child (James Grant), novelist, 67; Dan Castellaneta, voice of Homer Simpson, 64; Finola Hughes, actress, 62; Rufus Sewell, actor, 54; Roni Size (Ryan Williams), DJ, producer, 52; Edwin van der Sar, goalkeeper, 51; Winona Ryder, actress, 50; Robert Pirès, footballer, 48; Michael Vaughan, cricketer, 47; Andrew-Lee Potts, actor, 42; Fleur East, singer, 34; Jacqueline Jossa, actress, 28.