Home Today's History Lesson TODAY’S HISTORY LESSON: NOV 4




1979 – Iranian militants seized the U.S. embassy in Tehran and took 63 Americans hostage (90 total hostages). The militants, mostly students, demanded that the U.S. send the former shah back to Iran to stand trial. Many hostages were later released, but 52 were held for the next 14 months.

1333 – Flood of the Arno River, causing massive damage in Florence as recorded by the Florentine chronicler Giovanni Villani

1429 – Joan of Arc and Charles d’Albret liberate the heavily fortified town of Saint-Pierre-le-Moûtier after a siege

1501 – Catherine of Aragon (later Henry VIII’s wife) meets Arthur Tudor, Henry VIII’s older brother they would later marry.

1529 – English cardinal Thomas Wolsey arrested on charges of treason

1576 – Eighty Years’ War: In Flanders, Spain captures Antwerp (after three days the city was nearly destroyed).

1646 – Massachusetts uses death penalty for denying that Holy Bible is God’s word

1677 – The future Mary II of England marries William, Prince of Orange. They would later be known as William and Mary.

1839 – The Newport Rising is the last large-scale armed rebellion against authority in mainland Britain.

1841 – First wagon train arrives in California after a five and a half month and 1,730 mile journey over the Sierra Nevada from Missouri

1846 – A patent for an artificial leg was granted to Benjamin Palmer.

1847 – Scottish obstetrician James Young Simpson discovered the anethestic qualities of chloroform.

1861 – The University of Washington opens in Seattle, Washington as the Territorial University

1889 – Menelek of Shoa obtains the allegiance of a large majority of the Ethiopian nobility, paving the way for him to be crowned emperor

1899 – Sigmund Freud’s The Interpretation of Dreams is published.

1903 – Panama and Colombia wake up to news that the insurrectionists have declared an independent Republic of Panama

1910 – Russian Tsar Nicholas II visits German Emperor Wilhelm II at Potsdam; they force tentative agreements on spheres of influence in the Middle East

1918 – The German Revolution begins when 40,000 sailors take over the port in Kiel.

1921 – Japanese Prime Minister Hara Takashi is assassinated by a right wing fanatic in Tokyo

1922 – In Egypt, Howard Carter discovered the entry of the lost tomb of Pharaoh Tutankhamen.

1924 – Nellie T. Ross of Wyoming was elected America’s first woman governor so she could serve out the remaining term of her late husband, William B. Ross.

1928 – Arnold Rothstein, New York City’s most notorious gambler, is shot dead over a poker game

1933 – Bulgarian communist Georgi Dimitrov defends himself and the ideology of communism against Hermann Goering and his Nazi accusers on charges of setting the Reichstag on fire

1939 – During World War II, the U.S. modified its neutrality stance with the Neutrality Act of 1939. The new policy allowed cash-and-carry purchases of arms by belligerents.

1942 – During World War II, Axis forces retreated from El Alamein in North Africa. It was a major victory for the British.

1946 – United Nations Educational, Scientific, & Cultural Organization (UNESCO) formed

1952 – In the United States, the National Security Agency (NSA) was established.

1956 – Soviet troops enter Hungary to end the Hungarian revolution that started on October 23. Thousands are killed, more are wounded, and nearly a quarter million leave the country.

1962 – In a test of the Nike-Hercules air defense missile, Shot Dominic-Tightrope is successfully detonated 69,000 feet above Johnston Island. It would also be the final atmospheric nuclear test ever conducted by the United States.

1963 – John Lennon utters his famous quip at a Royal Variety Performance “For our last number, I’d like to ask your help. The people in the cheaper seats clap your hands? And for the rest of you, if you’ll just rattle your jewelry…” at the Prince of Wales Theatre in London

1970 – Genie, a 13 year old feral child found in Los Angeles, California, having been locked in her bedroom by her father for most of her life

1973 – The Netherlands experiences the first Car Free Sunday caused by the 1973 oil crisis. Highways are deserted and are solely used by cyclists and roller skaters.

1978 – Iranian troops fire on anti-Shah student protesters by Tehran University

1979 – Iranian militants seized the U.S. embassy in Tehran and took 63 Americans hostage (90 total hostages). The militants, mostly students, demanded that the U.S. send the former shah back to Iran to stand trial. Many hostages were later released, but 52 were held for the next 14 months.

1980 – Libyan invasion in Chad

1984 – Nicaragua held its first free elections in 56 years.

1985 – Soviet defector Vitaly Yurchenko announced he was returning to the Soviet Union. He had charged that he had been kidnapped by the CIA.

1986 – Chief Justice Rose Bird and two colleagues are removed by the electorate from the Supreme Court of California for their opposition to capital punishment.

1989 – About a million East Germans filled the streets of East Berlin in a pro-democracy rally.

1990 – Iraq issued a statement saying it was prepared to fight a “dangerous war” rather than give up Kuwait.

1994 – San Francisco: First conference that focusses exclusively on the subject of the commercial potential of the World Wide Web.

1995 – Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, 73 years old, was assassinated by right-wing Israeli Yigal Amir after attending a peace rally.

1999 – The United Nations imposed economic sanctions against the Taliban that controlled most of Afghanistan. The sanctions were imposed because the Taliban had refused to turn over Osama bin Laden, who had been charged with masterminding the 1998 bombings of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.

2002 – Chinese authorities arrest cyber-dissident He Depu for signing pro-democracy letter to the 16th Communist Party Congress

2003 – Former HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy becomes the first person indicted under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. He was eventually acquitted.

2004 – 12 French soldiers, 3 UN personnel and hundreds of civilians die during the Cte d’Ivoire civil war.

2012 – Syrian rebels capture a major oil field in Deir ez-Zor Governorate

2014 – Tim Scott becomes the first African-American Senator in the south since the Reconstruction

2015 – Romanian Prime Minister Victor Ponta announces his resignation after protests over a Bucharest nightclub fire that killed 32

2017 – Saudi Arabia arrests 11 princes and other ministers on corruption charges, including billionaire investor Prince Alwaleed bin Talal

2019 – Largest mass commutation in US history when 462 non-violent inmates freed from Oklahoma prisons as part of state prison reforms

2020 – Ethiopian PM Abiy Ahmed orders military offensive and state of emergency in northern region of Tigray, amid fears of a civil war

2022 – Astronomers announce discovery of closest known black hole to Earth, just 1,600 light-years away, 10x more massive that our sun

REFERENCE: history.net, onthisday.com, thepeopleshistory.com, timeanddate.com, scopesys.com, on-this-day.com


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