On this week in history

On this week in history (21st to 27th May inclusive) as follows;

  • 1455 – In the first battle of the English Wars of the Roses, the Yorkists are defeated by the Lancastrians at St Albans
  • 1471 – King Henry VI of England dies in the Tower of London, probably murdered by King Edward IV
  • 1795 – Scottish explorer Mungo Park sets forth on his first voyage to Africa
  • 1809 – Dartmoor Prison is opened in England to house French prisoners of war
  • 1840 – New Zealand is proclaimed a British colony
  • 1862 – London’s Westminster Bridge is opened
  • 1894 – Queen Victoria opens the Manchester Ship Canal
  • 1925 – British publishing magnate Sir Edward Hulton dies after falling off his penny farthing bicycle
  • 1948 – The Empire Windrush sets sail from Jamaica with the first boatload of West Indian immigrants invited to Britain to help with post-war reconstruction
  • 1972 – Richard Nixon becomes the first US President to visit the USSR
  • 1975 – The Bader-Meinhof terrorist gang goes on trial in Stuttgart
  • 1977 – Punk Band The Sex Pistols release the single ‘God Save the Queen’ in the UK
  • 1981 – Peter Sutcliffe, nicknamed the Yorkshire Ripper, is found guilty at London’s Old Bailey of the murder of 13 women
  • 1986 – Worldwide, 30 million people run a ‘Race Against Time’ for sport aid to raise money for the starving in Africa
  • 1988 – Snow falls on the Syrian desert and on Damascus for the first time in 50 years

And some notable birthdays include;

  • 1650 – John Churchill, Duke of Marlborough. English statesman and general
  • 1819 – Queen Victoria, English monarch whose idea of discipline and duty influenced the nation for over half a century
  • 1837 – James ‘Wild Bill’ Hickok, American frontiersman and US Marshal
  • 1859 – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Scottish novelist who created the great detective Sherlock Holmes
  • 1878 – Isadora Duncan, American dancer who pioneered a new style which greatly influenced modern dance
  • 1907 – John Wayne, American Oscar winning film actor
  • 1907 – Laurence Olivier, British actor, director and producer
  • 1911 – Vincent Price, American actor who starred in many horror movies
  • 1920 – Peggy Lee, American singer-songwriter and actress
  • 1923 – Henry Kissinger, German-born US Secretary of State who shared the Nobel Peace Prize in 1973 for his part in ending the Vietnam War
  • 1926 – Miles Davis, American composer and trumpeter who had a huge influence on jazz music
  • 1933 – Dame Joan Collins, British film and television actress
  • 1948 – Stevie Nicks, American singer-songwriter and member of the group Fleetwood Mac
  • 1958 – Paul Weller, British pop singer with groups The Jam and Style Council
  • 1979 – Jonny Wilkinson, English Rugby World Cup winner