On This Day … 26 August

Events

  • 683 – Yazid I’s army kills 11,000 people of Medina including notable Sahabas in Battle of al-Harrah.
  • 1071 – The Seljuq Turks defeat the Byzantine army at the Battle of Manzikert, and soon gain control of most of Anatolia.
  • 1278 – Ladislaus IV of Hungary and Rudolf I of Germany defeat Ottokar II of Bohemia in the Battle on the Marchfeld near Dürnkrut in (then) Moravia.
  • 1303 – Chittorgarh falls to the Delhi Sultanate, after which thirty thousand Hindu inhabitants are killed.
  • 1346 – At the Battle of Crécy, an English army easily defeats a French one twice its size.
  • 1444 – Battle of St. Jakob an der Birs: A vastly outnumbered force of Swiss Confederates is defeated by the Dauphin Louis (future Louis XI of France) and his army of ‘Armagnacs’ near Basel.
  • 1542 – Francisco de Orellana crosses South America from Guayaquil on the Pacific coast to the mouth of the Amazon River on the Atlantic coast.
  • 1768 – Captain James Cook sets sail from England on board HMS Endeavour.
  • 1810 – The former viceroy Santiago de Liniers of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata is executed after the defeat of his counter-revolution.
  • 1813 – War of the Sixth Coalition: An impromptu battle takes place when French and Prussian-Russian forces accidentally run into each other near Liegnitz, Prussia (now Legnica, Poland).
  • 1814 – Chilean War of Independence: Infighting between the rebel forces of José Miguel Carrera and Bernardo O’Higgins erupts in the Battle of Las Tres Acequias.
  • 1914 – World War I: The German colony of Togoland surrenders to French and British forces after a 20-day campaign.
  • 1914 – World War I: During the retreat from Mons, the British II Corps commanded by General Sir Horace Smith-Dorrien fought a vigorous and successful defensive action at Le Cateau.
  • 1922 – Greco-Turkish War (1919–22): Turkish army launched what has come to be known to the Turks as the “Great Offensive” (Büyük Taarruz).
    • The major Greek defense positions were overrun.
  • 1940 – Chad becomes the first French colony to join the Allies under the administration of Félix Éboué, France’s first black colonial governor.
  • 1942 – The Holocaust in Ukraine: At Chortkiv, the Ukrainian police and German Schutzpolizei deport two thousand Jews to Bełżec extermination camp.
    • Five hundred of the sick and children are murdered on the spot.
    • This continued until the next day.
  • 1944 – World War II: Charles de Gaulle enters Paris.
  • 1966 – The South African Border War starts with the battle at Omugulugwombashe.
  • 1998 – The first flight of the Air Force Delta III ends in disaster 75 seconds after liftoff resulting in the loss of the Galaxy X satellite.
  • 1999 – Russia begins the Second Chechen War in response to the Invasion of Dagestan by the Islamic International Peacekeeping Brigade.
  • Heroes’ Day (Namibia).

People (Births)

  • 1740 – Joseph-Michel Montgolfier, French inventor, invented the hot air balloon (d. 1810).
  • 1792 – Manuel Oribe, Uruguayan soldier and politician, 4th President of Uruguay (d. 1857).
  • 1900 – Margaret Utinsky, American nurse, recipient of the Medal of Freedom (d. 1970).
  • 1901 – Hans Kammler, German SS officer and engineer (d. 1945).
  • 1901 – Maxwell D. Taylor, American general and diplomat, United States Ambassador to South Vietnam (d. 1987).
  • 1901 – Chen Yi, Chinese general and politician, 2nd Foreign Minister of the People’s Republic of China (d. 1972).
  • 1906 – Albert Sabin, Polish-American physician and virologist, developed the polio vaccine (d. 1993).
  • 1914 – Fazıl Hüsnü Dağlarca, Turkish soldier and poet (d. 2008).
  • 1920 – Prem Tinsulanonda, Thai general and politician, 16th Prime Minister of Thailand (d. 2019).
  • 1929 – Reuben Kamanga, Zambian soldier and politician, 1st Vice President of Zambia (d. 1996).
  • 1945 – Tom Ridge, American sergeant and politician, 1st Secretary of Homeland Security.
  • 1953 – David Hurley, Australian general and politician, 27th Governor General of Australia.

People (Deaths)

  • 1785 – George Germain, 1st Viscount Sackville, English soldier and politician, 3rd Secretary of State for the Colonies (b. 1716).
  • 1810 – Santiago de Liniers, 1st Count of Buenos Aires, French-Spanish sailor and politician, 10th Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata (b. 1753).
  • 1813 – Theodor Körner, German soldier and author (b. 1791).
  • 2011 – John McAleese, Scottish sergeant (b. 1949).
  • 2013 – Hélie de Saint Marc, French soldier (b. 1922).
  • 2013 – John J. Gilligan, American soldier and politician, 62nd Governor of Ohio (b. 1921).
  • 2013 – Clyde A. Wheeler, American soldier and politician (b. 1921).
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