On This Day … 11 June


  • 1184 BC – Trojan War: Troy is sacked and burned, according to calculations by Eratosthenes.
  • 173 – Marcomannic Wars: The Roman army in Moravia is encircled by the Quadi, who have broken the peace treaty (171). In a violent thunderstorm emperor Marcus Aurelius defeats and subdues them in the so-called “miracle of the rain”.
  • 631 – Emperor Taizong of Tang sends envoys to the Xueyantuo bearing gold and silk in order to seek the release of Chinese prisoners captured during the transition from Sui to Tang.
  • 786 – A Hasanid Alid uprising in Mecca is crushed by the Abbasids at the Battle of Fakhkh.
  • 1011 – Lombard Revolt: Greek citizens of Bari rise up against the Lombard rebels led by Melus and deliver the city to Basil Mesardonites, Byzantine governor (catepan) of the Catepanate of Italy.
  • 1118 – Roger of Salerno, Prince of Antioch, captures Azaz from the Seljuk Turks.
  • 1157 – Albert I of Brandenburg, also called The Bear (Ger: Albrecht der Bär), becomes the founder of the Margraviate of Brandenburg, Germany and the first margrave.
  • 1429 – Hundred Years’ War: Start of the Battle of Jargeau.
  • 1488 – Battle of Sauchieburn: Fought between rebel Lords and James III of Scotland, resulting in the death of the king.
  • 1748 – Denmark adopts the characteristic Nordic Cross flag later taken up by all other Scandinavian countries.
  • 1770 – British explorer Captain James Cook runs aground on the Great Barrier Reef.
  • 1775 – The American Revolutionary War‘s first naval engagement, the Battle of Machias, results in the capture of a small British naval vessel.
  • 1776 – The Continental Congress appoints Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Roger Sherman, and Robert R. Livingston to the Committee of Five to draft a declaration of independence.
  • 1788 – Russian explorer Gerasim Izmailov reaches Alaska.
  • 1825 – The first cornerstone is laid for Fort Hamilton in New York City.
  • 1865 – The Naval Battle of the Riachuelo is fought on the rivulet Riachuelo (Argentina), between the Paraguayan Navy on one side and the Brazilian Navy on the other.
    • The Brazilian victory was crucial for the later success of the Triple Alliance (Brazil, Uruguay, and Argentina) in the Paraguayan War.
  • 1901 – The boundaries of the Colony of New Zealand are extended by the UK to include the Cook Islands.
  • 1903 – A group of Serbian officers stormed the royal palace and assassinated King Alexander Obrenović and his wife, Queen Draga.
  • 1917 – King Alexander assumes the throne of Greece after his father, Constantine I, abdicates under pressure from allied armies occupying Athens.
  • 1937 – Great Purge: The Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin executes eight army leaders.
  • 1938 – Second Sino-Japanese War: The Battle of Wuhan starts.
  • 1940 – World War II: The Siege of Malta begins with a series of Italian air raids.
  • 1942 – World War II: The United States agrees to send Lend-Lease aid to the Soviet Union.
  • 1942 – Free French Forces retreat from Bir Hakeim after having successfully delayed the Axis advance.
  • 1944 – USS Missouri, the last battleship built by the United States Navy and future site of the signing of the Japanese Instrument of Surrender, is commissioned.
  • 1963 – American Civil Rights Movement: Governor of Alabama George Wallace defiantly stands at the door of Foster Auditorium at the University of Alabama in an attempt to block two black students, Vivian Malone and James Hood, from attending that school.
    • Later in the day, accompanied by federalised National Guard troops, they are able to register.
  • 1963 – Buddhist monk Thích Quảng Đức burns himself with gasoline in a busy Saigon intersection to protest the lack of religious freedom in South Vietnam.
  • 1964 – World War II veteran Walter Seifert attacks an elementary school in Cologne, Germany, killing at least eight children and two teachers and seriously injuring several more with a home-made flamethrower and a lance.
  • 1970 – After being appointed on May 15, Anna Mae Hays and Elizabeth P. Hoisington officially receive their ranks as US Army Generals, becoming the first women to do so.
  • 2002 – Antonio Meucci is acknowledged as the first inventor of the telephone by the United States Congress.
  • Brazilian Navy Commemorative Day (Brazil).

People (Births)

  • 1585 – Evert Horn, Swedish soldier (d. 1615).
  • 1662 – Tokugawa Ienobu, Japanese shōgun (d. 1712).
  • 1696 – James Francis Edward Keith, Scottish-Prussian field marshal (d. 1758).
  • 1741 – Joseph Warren, American physician and general (d. 1775).
  • 1807 – James F. Schenck, American admiral (d. 1882).
  • 1846 – William Louis Marshall, American general and engineer (d. 1920).
  • 1889 – Hugo Wieslander, Swedish decathlete (d. 1976).
  • 1910 – Jacques Cousteau, French biologist, author, and inventor, co-developed the aqua-lung (d. 1997).
  • 1930 – Charles Rangel, American soldier, lawyer, and politician.
  • 1952 – Yekaterina Podkopayeva, Russian runner.
  • 1964 – Kim Gallagher, American runner (d. 2002).
  • 1976 – Reiko Tosa, Japanese runner.

People (Deaths)

  • 323 BC – Alexander the Great, Macedonian king (b. 356 BC).
  • 786 – Al-Husayn ibn Ali al-Abid, anti-Abbasid rebel leader.
  • 884 – Shi Jingsi, general of the Tang Dynasty.
  • 1248 – Adachi Kagemori, Japanese samurai.
  • 1847 – John Franklin, English admiral and politician (b. 1786).
  • 1885 – Matías Ramos Mejía, Argentinian colonel (b. 1810).
  • 1913 – Mahmud Shevket Pasha, Ottoman general and politician, 279th Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire (b. 1856).
  • 1920 – William F. Halsey, Sr., American captain (b. 1853).
  • 1937 – R. J. Mitchell, English engineer, designed the Supermarine Spitfire (b. 1895).
  • 1965 – José Mendes Cabeçadas, Portuguese admiral and politician, 9th President of Portugal (b. 1883).
  • 1974 – Eurico Gaspar Dutra, Brazilian general and politician, 16th President of Brazil (b. 1883)
  • .2005 – Vasco Gonçalves, Portuguese general and politician, 103rd Prime Minister of Portugal (b. 1922).
  • 2006 – Bruce Shand, English soldier (b. 1917).
  • 2008 – Võ Văn Kiệt, Vietnamese soldier and politician, 5th Prime Minister of Vietnam (b. 1922).
  • 2013 – James Grimsley, Jr., American general (b. 1921).
  • 2014 – Carlton Sherwood, American soldier and journalist (b. 1947).
  • 2016 – Rudi Altig, German track and road racing cyclist (b. 1937).

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