On This Day … 06 January

Events

  • 1066 – Following the death of Edward the Confessor on the previous day, the Witan meets to confirm Harold Godwinson as the new King of England; Harold is crowned the same day, sparking a succession crisis that will eventually lead to the Norman conquest of England.
  • 1322 – Stephen Uroš III is crowned King of Serbia, having defeated his half-brother Stefan Konstantin in battle.
    • His son is crowned “young king” in the same ceremony.
  • 1492 – The Catholic Monarchs Ferdinand and Isabella enter Granada at the conclusion of the Granada War.
  • 1579 – The Union of Arras unites the southern Netherlands under the Duke of Parma (Ottavio Farnese), governor in the name of King Philip II of Spain.
  • 1641 – Arauco War: The first Parliament of Quillín is celebrated, putting a temporary hold on hostilities between Mapuches and Spanish in Chile.
  • 1661 – English Restoration: The Fifth Monarchists unsuccessfully attempt to seize control of London, England.
    • The revolt is suppressed after a few days.
  • 1781 – In the Battle of Jersey, the British defeat the last attempt by France to invade Jersey in the Channel Islands.
  • 1809 – Combined British, Portuguese and colonial Brazilian forces begin the Invasion of Cayenne during the Napoleonic Wars.
  • 1838 – Alfred Vail and colleagues demonstrate a telegraph system using dots and dashes (this is the forerunner of Morse code).
  • 1847 – Samuel Colt obtains his first contract for the sale of revolver pistols to the United States government.
  • 1900 – Second Boer War: Having already besieged the fortress at Ladysmith, Boer forces attack it, but are driven back by British defenders.
  • 1929 – King Alexander of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes suspends his country’s constitution (the January 6th Dictatorship).
  • 1930 – The first diesel-powered automobile trip is completed, from Indianapolis, Indiana, to New York, New York.
  • 1950 – The United Kingdom recognises the People’s Republic of China.
    • The Republic of China severs diplomatic relations with the UK in response.
  • 1951 – Korean War: Beginning of the Ganghwa massacre, in the course of which an estimated 200-1,300 South Korean communist sympathizers are slaughtered.
  • 1967 – Vietnam War: United States Marine Corps and ARVN troops launch “Operation Deckhouse Five” in the Mekong River delta.
  • 1974 – In response to the 1973 oil crisis, daylight saving time commences nearly four months early in the United States.
  • 1992 – President of Georgia Zviad Gamsakhurdia flees the country as a result of the military coup.
  • 1993 – Indian Border Security Force units kill 55 Kashmiri civilians in Sopore, Jammu and Kashmir, in revenge after militants ambushed a BSF patrol.
  • 1995 – A chemical fire in an apartment complex in Manila, Philippines, leads to the discovery of plans for Project Bojinka, a mass-terrorist attack.
  • Armed Forces Day (Iraq).

People (Births)

  • 1745 – Jacques-Etienne Montgolfier, French co-inventor of the hot air balloon (d. 1799).
  • 1766 – José Gaspar Rodríguez de Francia, Paraguayan lawyer and politician, first dictator of Paraguay (d. 1840).
  • 1898 – James Fitzmaurice, Irish soldier and pilot (d. 1965).
  • 1915 – Don Edwards, American soldier, lawyer, and politician (d. 2015).
  • 1923 – Vladimir Kazantsev, Russian runner (d. 2007).
  • 1924 – Kim Dae-jung, South Korean soldier and politician, 8th President of South Korea, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 2009).
  • 1939 – Murray Rose, English-Australian swimmer and sportscaster (d. 2012).
  • 1948 – Guy Gardner, American colonel and astronaut.
  • 1949 – Mike Boit, Kenyan runner and academic (estimated date).
  • 1963 – Paul Kipkoech, Kenyan runner (d. 1995).

People (Deaths)

  • 1711 – Philips van Almonde, Dutch admiral (b. 1646).
  • 1813 – Louis Baraguey d’Hilliers, French general (b. 1764).
  • 1852 – Louis Braille, French educator, invented Braille (b. 1809).
  • 1913 – Frederick Hitch, English soldier, Victoria Cross recipient (b. 1856).
  • 1919 – Theodore Roosevelt, American colonel and politician, 26th President of the United States (b. 1858).
  • 1921 – Devil Anse Hatfield, American guerrilla leader (b. 1839).
  • 1928 – Alvin Kraenzlein, American hurdler and long jumper (b. 1876).
  • 1972 – Chen Yi, Chinese general and politician, 2nd Foreign Minister of the People’s Republic of China (b. 1901).
  • 2012 – Spike Pola, Australian footballer and soldier (b. 1914).
  • 2014 – Marina Ginestà, French Resistance soldier and photographer (b. 1919).
  • 2019 – José Ramón Fernández, Cuban revolution leader (b. 1923).
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