On This Day … 09 July


  • 491 – Odoacer makes a night assault with his Heruli guardsmen, engaging Theoderic the Great in Ad Pinetam. Both sides suffer heavy losses, but in the end Theodoric forces Odoacer back into Ravenna.
  • 660 – Korean forces under general Kim Yu-sin of Silla defeat the army of Baekje in the Battle of Hwangsanbeol.
  • 969 – The Fatimid general Jawhar leads the Friday prayer in Fustat in the name of Caliph al-Mu’izz li-Din Allah, thereby symbolically completing the Fatimid conquest of Egypt.
  • 1386 – The Old Swiss Confederacy makes great strides in establishing control over its territory by soundly defeating the Archduchy of Austria in the Battle of Sempach.
  • 1401 – Timur attacks the Jalairid Sultanate and destroys Baghdad.
  • 1701 – A Bourbon force under Nicolas Catinat withdraws from a smaller Habsburg force under Prince Eugene of Savoy in the Battle of Carpi.
  • 1745 – French victory in the Battle of Melle allows them to capture Ghent in the days after.
  • 1755 – The Braddock Expedition is soundly defeated by a smaller French and Native American force in its attempt to capture Fort Duquesne in what is now downtown Pittsburgh.
  • 1762 – Catherine the Great becomes Empress of Russia following the coup against her husband, Peter III.
  • 1776 – George Washington orders the Declaration of Independence to be read out to members of the Continental Army in Manhattan, while thousands of British troops on Staten Island prepare for the Battle of Long Island.
  • 1789 – In Versailles, the National Assembly reconstitutes itself as the National Constituent Assembly and begins preparations for a French constitution.
  • 1790 – The Swedish Navy captures one third of the Russian Baltic fleet.
  • 1807 – Napoleonic Wars: The second Treaty of Tilsit is signed between France and Prussia, ending the War of the Fourth Coalition.
  • 1810 – Napoleonic Wars: Napoleon annexes the Kingdom of Holland as part of the First French Empire.
  • 1811 – Explorer David Thompson posts a sign near what is now Sacajawea State Park in Washington state, claiming the Columbia District for the United Kingdom.
  • 1816 – Argentina declares independence from Spain.
  • 1821 – Four hundred and seventy prominent Cypriots including Archbishop Kyprianos are executed in response to Cypriot aid to the Greek War of Independence.
  • 1863 – American Civil War: The Siege of Port Hudson ends, giving the Union complete control of the Mississippi River.
  • 1875 – The Herzegovina Uprising against Ottoman rule begins, which would last until 1878 and have far-reaching implications throughout the Balkans.
  • 1900 – The Federation of Australia is given royal assent.
  • 1932 – The state of São Paulo revolts against the Brazilian Federal Government, starting the Constitutionalist Revolution.
  • 1943 – World War II: The Allied invasion of Sicily soon causes the downfall of Mussolini and forces Hitler to break off the Battle of Kursk.
  • 1944 – World War II: American forces take Saipan, bringing the Japanese archipelago within range of B-29 raids, and causing the downfall of the Tojo government.
  • 1944 – World War II: Continuation War: Finland wins the Battle of Tali-Ihantala, the largest battle ever fought in northern Europe. The Red Army withdraws its troops from Ihantala and digs into a defensive position, thus ending the Vyborg–Petrozavodsk Offensive.
  • 1955 – The Russell–Einstein Manifesto calls for a reduction of the risk of nuclear warfare.
  • 1962 – Starfish Prime tests the effects of a nuclear test at orbital altitudes.
  • 1979 – A car bomb destroys a Renault motor car owned by “Nazi hunters” Serge and Beate Klarsfeld outside their home in France in an unsuccessful assassination attempt.
  • 1995 – The Navaly church bombing is carried out by the Sri Lanka Air Force killing 125 Tamil civilian refugees.
  • 2011 – South Sudan gains independence and secedes from Sudan.
  • Independence Day, celebrates the declaration of independence of the United Provinces of South America by the Congress of Tucumán in 1816. (Argentina).
  • Independence Day, celebrates the independence of South Sudan from Sudan in 2011.

People (Births)

  • 1577 – Thomas West, 3rd Baron De La Warr, English-American soldier and politician, Colonial Governor of Virginia (d. 1618).
  • 1753 – William Waldegrave, 1st Baron Radstock, English admiral and politician, 34th Lieutenant Governor of Newfoundland (d. 1825).
  • 1808 – Alexander William Doniphan, American lawyer and colonel (d. 1887).
  • 1819 – Elias Howe, American inventor, invented the sewing machine (d. 1867).
  • 1887 – Samuel Eliot Morison, American admiral and historian (d. 1976).
  • 1902 – Peter Acland, English soldier (d. 1993).
  • 1915 – Lee Embree, American sergeant and photographer (d. 2008).
  • 1916 – Edward Heath, English colonel and politician, former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (1970-74) (d. 2005).
  • 1921 – David C. Jones, American general (d. 2013).
  • 1928 – Federico Bahamontes, Spanish cyclist.
  • 1929 – Chi Haotian, Chinese general.
  • 1932 – Donald Rumsfeld, American captain and politician, 13th United States Secretary of Defence (d. 2021).
  • 1932 – Amitzur Shapira, Israeli sprinter and long jumper (d. 1972).
  • 1943 – John Casper, American colonel, pilot, and astronaut.
  • 1949 – Raoul Cédras, Haitian military officer and politician.
  • 1955 – Lindsey Graham, American colonel, lawyer, and politician.
  • 1985 – Paweł Korzeniowski, Polish swimmer.
  • 1987 – Gert Jõeäär, Estonian cyclist.
  • 1993 – Mitch Larkin, Australian swimmer.

People (Deaths)

  • 1706 – Pierre Le Moyne d’Iberville, Canadian captain and explorer (b. 1661).
  • 1795 – Henry Seymour Conway, English general and politician, Secretary of State for the Northern Department (b. 1721).
  • 1850 – Zachary Taylor, American general and politician, 12th President of the United States (b. 1784).
  • 1882 – Ignacio Carrera Pinto, Chilean captain (b. 1848).
  • 1937 – Oliver Law, American commander (b. 1899).
  • 1947 – Lucjan Żeligowski, Polish-Lithuanian general and politician (b. 1865).

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