On This Day … 21 April

Events

  • 753 BC – Romulus founds Rome (traditional date).
  • 43 BC – Battle of Mutina: Mark Antony is again defeated in battle by Aulus Hirtius, who is killed.
    • Antony fails to capture Mutina and Decimus Brutus is murdered shortly after.
  • 900 – The Laguna Copperplate Inscription (the earliest known written document found in what is now the Philippines): the Commander-in-Chief of the Kingdom of Tondo, as represented by the Honourable Jayadewa, Lord Minister of Pailah, pardons from all debt the Honourable Namwaran and his relations.
  • 1509 – Henry VIII ascends the throne of England on the death of his father, Henry VII.
  • 1526 – The last ruler of the Lodi dynasty, Ibrahim Lodi is defeated and killed by Babur in the First Battle of Panipat.
  • 1782 – The city of Rattanakosin, now known internationally as Bangkok, is founded on the eastern bank of the Chao Phraya River by King Buddha Yodfa Chulaloke.
  • 1789 – George Washington’s reception at Trenton is hosted by the Ladies of Trenton as he journeys to New York City for his first inauguration.
  • 1792 – Tiradentes, a revolutionary leading a movement for Brazil’s independence, is hanged, drawn and quartered.
  • 1802 – Twelve thousand Wahhabis under Abdul-Aziz bin Muhammad, invaded city of Karbala, killed over three thousand inhabitants, and sacked the city.
  • 1806 – Action of 21 April 1806: A French frigate escapes British forces off the coast of South Africa.
  • 1809 – Two Austrian army corps are driven from Landshut by a First French Empire army led by Napoleon as two French corps to the north hold off the main Austrian army on the first day of the Battle of Eckmühl.
  • 1836 – Texas Revolution: The Battle of San Jacinto: Republic of Texas forces under Sam Houston defeat troops under Mexican General Antonio López de Santa Anna.
  • 1894 – Norway formally adopts the Krag-Jørgensen bolt-action rifle as the main arm of its armed forces, a weapon that would remain in service for almost 50 years.
  • 1898 – Spanish-American War: The United States Navy begins a blockade of Cuban ports.
    • When the US Congress issued a declaration of war on April 25, it declared that a state of war had existed from this date.
  • 1914 – Ypiranga incident: A German arms shipment to Mexico is intercepted by the US Navy near Veracruz.
  • 1918 – World War I: German fighter ace Manfred von Richthofen, better known as “The Red Baron”, is shot down and killed over Vaux-sur-Somme in France.
  • 1934 – The “Surgeon’s Photograph”, the most famous photo allegedly showing the Loch Ness Monster, is published in the Daily Mail (in 1999, it is revealed to be a hoax).
  • 1945 – World War II: Soviet forces south of Berlin at Zossen attack the German High Command headquarters.
  • 1948 – United Nations Security Council Resolution 47 relating to Kashmir conflict is adopted.
  • 1958 – United Airlines Flight 736 collides into a United States Air Force fighter jet near Arden, Nevada in what is now Enterprise, Nevada.
  • 1960 – Brasília, Brazil’s capital, is officially inaugurated.
    • At 09:30, the Three Powers of the Republic are simultaneously transferred from the old capital, Rio de Janeiro.
  • 1962 – The Seattle World’s Fair (Century 21 Exposition) opens.
    • It is the first World’s Fair in the United States since World War II.
  • 1967 – A few days before the general election in Greece, Colonel George Papadopoulos leads a coup d’état, establishing a military regime that lasts for seven years.
  • 1975 – Vietnam War: President of South Vietnam Nguyễn Văn Thiệu flees Saigon, as Xuân Lộc, the last South Vietnamese outpost blocking a direct North Vietnamese assault on Saigon, falls.
  • 1987 – The Tamil Tigers are blamed for a car bomb that detonates in the Sri Lankan capital city of Colombo, killing 106 people.
  • 2010 – The controversial Kharkiv Pact (Russian Ukrainian Naval Base for Gas Treaty) is signed in Kharkiv, Ukraine, by Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev; it was unilaterally terminated by Russia on 31 March 2014.
  • Heroic Defence of Veracruz (Mexico).

People (Births)

  • 1523 – Marco Antonio Bragadin, Venetian lawyer and military officer (d. 1571).
  • 1713 – Louis de Noailles, French general (d. 1793).
  • 1790 – Manuel Blanco Encalada, Spanish-Chilean admiral and politician, 1st President of Chile (d. 1876).
  • 1837 – Fredrik Bajer, Danish lieutenant and politician, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1922).
  • 1885 – Tatu Kolehmainen, Finnish runner (d. 1967).
  • 1893 – Romeo Bertini, Italian runner (d. 1973).
  • 1898 – Maurice Wilson, English soldier, pilot, and mountaineer (d. 1934).
  • 1904 – Odilo Globocnik, Italian-Austrian SS officer (d. 1945).
  • 1925 – Anthony Mason, Australian soldier and judge, 9th Chief Justice of Australia.
  • 1925 – John Swinton of Kimmerghame, English general and politician, Lord Lieutenant of Berwickshire (d. 2018).
  • 1926 – Elizabeth II, Queen of the United Kingdom and her other realms.
  • 1948 – Dieter Fromm, German runner.
  • 1959 – Olga Kuragina, Russian pentathlete.
  • 1960 – Julius Korir, Kenyan runner.
  • 1964 – Alex Baumann, Czech-Canadian swimmer.
  • 1964 – Ludmila Engquist, Russian-Swedish hurdler.
  • 1967 – Emilio Valle, Cuban hurdler.
  • 1969 – John Kibowen, Kenyan runner.
  • 1972 – Richard Chelimo, Kenyan runner (d. 2001).
  • 1973 – Jonathan Nsenga, Belgian hurdler and coach.
  • 1975 – Danyon Loader, New Zealand swimmer.
  • 1978 – Yuliya Pechonkina, Russian hurdler.
  • 1988 – Ricky Berens, American swimmer.
  • 1989 – Tatyana McFadden, Russian-American sprinter and skier.

People (Deaths)

  • 1650 – Yagyū Jūbei Mitsuyoshi, Japanese samurai (b. 1607).
  • 1720 – Antoine Hamilton, Irish-French soldier and author (b. 1646).
  • 1815 – Joseph Winston, American soldier and politician (b. 1746).
  • 1852 – Ivan Nabokov, Russian general (b. 1787).
  • 1918 – Manfred von Richthofen, German captain and pilot (b. 1892).
  • 1945 – Walter Model, German field marshal (b. 1891).
  • 1996 – Dzhokhar Dudayev, Chechen general and politician, 1st President of Ichkeria (b. 1944).
  • 2006 – Johnny Checketts, New Zealand commander and pilot (b. 1912).
  • 2013 – Leopold Engleitner, Austrian Holocaust survivor, author, and educator (b. 1905).
  • 2013 – Gordon D. Gayle, American general and historian (b. 1917).
  • 2015 – Sydney Valpy Radley-Walters, Canadian general (b. 1920).
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