TODAY’S HISTORY LESSON: July 31
30 BC Battle of Alexandria: Mark Antony achieves minor victory over Octavian, but most of his army subsequently deserts, leading to Octavian’s invasion of Egypt
1498 Columbus arrived at the island of Trinidad.
1620 Pilgrim Fathers depart Leiden, Netherlands for England on their way to America
1703 English novelist Daniel Defoe is made to stand in the pillory as punishment for offending the government and church with his satire The Shortest Way With Dissenters.
1777 Marquis de Lafayette, 19, made major-general of Continental Army
1790 The first U.S. patent was issued to Samuel Hopkins for his process for making potash and pearl ashes. The substance was used in fertilizer.
1882 Belle and Sam Starr are charged with horse stealing in the Indian territory.
1891 Great Britain declares territories in Southern Africa up to the Congo to be within its sphere of influence.
1904 The Trans-Siberian railroad connecting the Ural mountains with Russia’s Pacific coast, is completed.
1912 US government prohibits movies & photos of prize fights (censorship)
1928 MGM’s Leo the lion roared for the first time. He introduced MGM’s first talking picture, “White Shadows on the South Seas.”
1953 Dept of Health, Education & Welfare created
1954 Mount Godwin-Austen (K2), the world’s second-highest peak, was climbed for the first time, by an Italian team led by Ardito Desio.
1959 The Euskadi Ta Askatasuna (ETA) was founded. The group is known for being an armed Basque nationalist and separatist organization.
1961 Israel welcomes its one millionth immigrant
1962 Federation of Malaysia formally proposed.
1964 The American space probe Ranger 7 transmitted pictures of the moon’s surface.
1971 Apollo 15 astronauts take a drive on the moon in their land rover
1978 Gunman shoots his way into the Iraqi Embassy in Paris
1981 The seven-week baseball players’ strike came to an end when the players and owners agreed on the issue of free agent compensation.
1989 The Game Boy handheld video game device was released in the U.S.
1990 Bosnia-Herzegovina declares independence from Yugoslavia.
1991 The US and the USSR sign a long-range nuclear weapons reduction pact.
1999 NASA purposely crashes its Discovery Program’s Lunar Prospector into the moon, ending the agency’s mission to detect frozen water on Earth’s moon.
2006 Fidel Castro temporarily hands over power to his brother Raul Castro.
2007 Operation Banner, the presence of the British Army in Northern Ireland, and longest-running British Army operation ever, comes to an end
REFERENCE: HISTORY.NET, ONTHISDAY.COM, TIMEANDDATE.COM, INFOPLEASE.COM, FACTMONSTER.COM, SCOPESYS.COM, ON-THIS-DAY.COM, THEPEOPLEHISTORY.COM