On This Day … 07 May


  • 351 – The Jewish revolt against Constantius Gallus breaks out after his arrival at Antioch.
  • 1487 – The Siege of Málaga commences during the Spanish Reconquista.
  • 1685 – Battle of Vrtijeljka between rebels and Ottoman forces.
  • 1718 – The city of New Orleans is founded by Jean-Baptiste Le Moyne, Sieur de Bienville.
  • 1763 – Pontiac’s War begins with Pontiac’s attempt to seize Fort Detroit from the British.
  • 1794 – French Revolution: Robespierre introduces the Cult of the Supreme Being in the National Convention as the new state religion of the French First Republic.
  • 1832 – Greece’s independence is recognised by the Treaty of London.
  • 1864 – American Civil War: The Army of the Potomac, under General Ulysses S. Grant, breaks off from the Battle of the Wilderness and moves southwards.
  • 1915 – World War I: German submarine U-20 sinks RMS Lusitania, killing 1,198 people, including 128 Americans. Public reaction to the sinking turns many former pro-Germans in the United States against the German Empire.
  • 1915 – The Republic of China accedes to 13 of the 21 Demands, extending the Empire of Japan’s control over Manchuria and the Chinese economy.
  • 1920 – Kiev Offensive: Polish troops led by Józef Piłsudski and Edward Rydz-Śmigły and assisted by a symbolic Ukrainian force capture Kiev only to be driven out by the Red Army counter-offensive a month later.
  • 1920 – Treaty of Moscow: Soviet Russia recognises the independence of the Democratic Republic of Georgia only to invade the country six months later.
  • 1937 – Spanish Civil War: The German Condor Legion, equipped with Heinkel He 51 biplanes, arrives in Spain to assist Francisco Franco’s forces.
  • 1940 – World War II: The Norway Debate in the British House of Commons begins, and leads to the replacement of Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain with Winston Churchill three days later.
  • 1942 – World War II: During the Battle of the Coral Sea, United States Navy aircraft carrier aircraft attack and sink the Imperial Japanese Navy light aircraft carrier Shōhō; the battle marks the first time in naval history that two enemy fleets fight without visual contact between warring ships.
  • 1945 – World War II: Last German U boat attack of the war, two freighters are sunk off the Firth of Forth, Scotland.
  • 1945 – World War II: General Alfred Jodl signs unconditional surrender terms at Reims, France, ending Germany’s participation in the war. The document takes effect the next day.
  • 1946 – Tokyo Telecommunications Engineering (later renamed Sony) is founded.
  • 1952 – The concept of the integrated circuit, the basis for all modern computers, is first published by Geoffrey Dummer.
  • 1954 – Indochina War: The Battle of Dien Bien Phu ends in a French defeat and a Viet Minh victory (the battle began on 13 March.
  • 1960 – Cold War: U-2 Crisis of 1960: Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev announces that his nation is holding American U-2 pilot Gary Powers.
  • 1999 – Kosovo War: Three Chinese citizens are killed and 20 wounded when a NATO aircraft apparently inadvertently bombs the Chinese embassy in Belgrade, Serbia.
  • 1999 – In Guinea-Bissau, President João Bernardo Vieira is ousted in a military coup.
  • Defender of the Fatherland Day (Kazakhstan).
  • Dien Bien Phu Victory Day (Vietnam).

People (Births)

  • 1724 – Dagobert Sigmund von Wurmser, French-Austrian field marshal (d. 1797).
  • 1763 – Józef Poniatowski, Polish general (d. 1813).
  • 1774 – William Bainbridge, American commodore (d. 1833).
  • 1889 – Viktor Puskar, Estonian colonel (d. 1943).
  • 1892 – Josip Broz Tito, Yugoslav field marshal and politician, 1st President of Yugoslavia (d. 1980).
  • 1913 – John Spencer Hardy, American general (d. 2012).
  • 1923 – Bülent Ulusu, Turkish admiral and politician, 18th Prime Minister of Turkey (d. 2015).
  • 1953 – Ian McKay, English sergeant, Victoria Cross recipient (d. 1982).
  • 1967 – Joe Rice, American colonel and politician.
  • 1976 – Michael P. Murphy, American lieutenant, Medal of Honour recipient (d. 2005).

People (Deaths)

  • 1805 – William Petty, 2nd Earl of Shelburne, Irish-English general and politician, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (b. 1737).
  • 1815 – Jabez Bowen, American colonel and politician, 45th Deputy Governor of Rhode Island (b. 1739).
  • 1917 – Albert Ball, English fighter pilot (b. 1896).
  • 1943 – Fethi Okyar, Turkish colonel and politician, 2nd Prime Minister of Turkey (b. 1880).
  • 1987 – Paul Popham, American soldier and activist, co-founded Gay Men’s Health Crisis (b. 1941).
  • 2005 – Peter Rodino, American captain and politician (b. 1909).
  • 2014 – Neville McNamara, Australian air marshal (b. 1923).

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