On This Day … 22 April


  • 238 – Year of the Six Emperors: The Roman Senate outlaws emperor Maximinus Thrax for his bloodthirsty proscriptions in Rome and nominates two of its members, Pupienus and Balbinus, to the throne.
  • 1500 – Portuguese navigator Pedro Álvares Cabral lands in Brazil.
  • 1519 – Spanish conquistador Hernán Cortés establishes a settlement at Veracruz, Mexico.
  • 1529 – Treaty of Zaragoza divides the eastern hemisphere between Spain and Portugal along a line 297.5 leagues (1,250 kilometres (780 mi)) east of the Moluccas.
  • 1622 – The Capture of Ormuz by the East India Company ends Portuguese control of Hormuz Island.
  • 1809 – The second day of the Battle of Eckmühl: The Austrian army is defeated by the First French Empire army led by Napoleon and driven over the Danube in Regensburg.
  • 1836 – Texas Revolution: A day after the Battle of San Jacinto, forces under Texas General Sam Houston identify Mexican General Antonio López de Santa Anna among the captives of the battle when some of his fellow soldiers mistakenly give away his identity.
  • 1889 – At noon, thousands rush to claim land in the Land Rush of 1889. Within hours the cities of Oklahoma City and Guthrie are formed with populations of at least 10,000.
  • 1898 – Spanish–American War: The USS Nashville captures a Spanish merchant ship.
  • 1906 – The 1906 Intercalated Games, now recognized as part of the official Olympic Games, open in Athens.
  • 1915 – The use of poison gas in World War I escalates when chlorine gas is released as a chemical weapon in the Second Battle of Ypres.
  • 1930 – The United Kingdom, Japan and the United States sign the London Naval Treaty regulating submarine warfare and limiting shipbuilding.
  • 1944 – The 1st Air Commando Group using Sikorsky R-4 helicopters stage the first use of helicopters in combat with combat search and rescue operations in the China Burma India Theatre.
  • 1944 – World War II: Operation Persecution is initiated: Allied forces land in the Hollandia (currently known as Jayapura) area of New Guinea.
  • 1944 – World War II: In Greenland, the Allied Sledge Patrol attack the German Bassgeiger weather station.
  • 1945 – World War II: Prisoners at the Jasenovac concentration camp revolt. Five hundred twenty are killed and around eighty escape.
  • 1948 – Arab–Israeli War: The port city of Haifa is captured by Jewish forces.
  • 1951 – Korean War: The Chinese People’s Volunteer Army begin assaulting positions defended by the Royal Australian Regiment and the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry at the Battle of Kapyong.
  • 1954 – Red Scare: Witnesses begin testifying and live television coverage of the Army–McCarthy hearings begins.
  • 1972 – Increased American bombing in Vietnam prompts anti-war protests in Los Angeles, New York City, and San Francisco.
  • 1977 – Optical fiber is first used to carry live telephone traffic.
  • 1983 – The German magazine Stern claims the “Hitler Diaries” had been found in wreckage in East Germany; the diaries are subsequently revealed to be forgeries.
  • 2005 – Japan’s Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi apologises for Japan’s war record.
  • 2008 – The United States Air Force retires the remaining F-117 Nighthawk aircraft in service.
  • Holocaust Remembrance Day (Serbia).

People (Births)

  • 1711 – Paul II Anton, Prince Esterházy, Austrian soldier (d. 1762).
  • 1816 – Charles-Denis Bourbaki, French general (d. 1897).
  • 1844 – Lewis Powell, American soldier, attempted assassin of William H. Seward (d. 1865).
  • 1870 – Vladimir Lenin, Russian revolutionary and founder of Soviet Russia (d. 1924).
  • 1889 – Richard Glücks, German SS officer (d. 1945).
  • 1914 – José Quiñones Gonzales, Peruvian soldier and pilot (d. 1941).
  • 1914 – Michael Wittmann, German SS officer (d. 1944).
  • 1922 – Richard Diebenkorn, American soldier and painter (d. 1993).
  • 1923 – Peter Kane Dufault, American soldier, pilot, and poet (d. 2013).
  • 1939 – John Foley, English general and politician, Lieutenant Governor of Guernsey.
  • 1943 – John Maples, Baron Maples, English lawyer and politician, Shadow Secretary of State for Defence (d. 2012).

People (Deaths)

  • 1806 – Pierre-Charles Villeneuve, French admiral (b. 1763).
  • 1854 – Nicolás Bravo, Mexican general and politician, 11th President of Mexico (b. 1786).
  • 1871 – Martín Carrera, Mexican general and president (1855) (b. 1806).
  • 1994 – Richard Nixon, American lieutenant, lawyer, and politician, 37th President of the United States (b. 1913).
  • 2004 – Jason Dunham, American soldier, Medal of Honour recipient (b. 1981).

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