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On July 31st...

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Christopher Columbus1498 Christopher Columbus reached the island of Trinidad.

1547 King Francis I of France died.

1556 St. Ignatius of Loyola died.

1750 King Joćo V of Portugal died.

1790 The first patent in the United States was granted, to Samuel Hopkins for a potash process.

John Ericsson1803 Inventor John Ericsson was born.

1813 British troops invaded Plattsburgh, New York.

William Quantrill1837 William Clarke Quantrill, leader of a band of guerrillas during the Civil War, was born.

1849 Benjamin Chambers, Sr., patented a breech loading cannon.

1856 Christchurch, New Zealand, was chartered as a city.

1865 The first narrow gauge mainline railway in the world opened at Grandchester, Australia.

1867 S.S. Kresge, founder of K-Mart, was born.

Andrew Johnson1875 Andrew Johnson, 17th President of the United States, died.

1876 The U.S. Coast Guard officers' training school was established at New Bedford Massachusetts.

1879 The first cable connection between South Africa and Europe was laid by British electrical engineer Charles Tilston Bright.

1886 Film and television producer Fred Quimby was born.
1886 Composer Franz Liszt died.

Thomas DeWitt Milling1887 Early Army aviator Thomas DeWitt Milling was born.

Henry Perky1893 Henry Perky patented Shredded Wheat.

1912 Economist Milton Friedman was born.

1917 The Third Battle of Ypres began.

USS Constitution1931 The USS Constitution ("Old Ironsides") was recommissioned.

1932 Actor Ted Cassidy was born.

Emmett Dalton1937 Emmett Dalton, one-time member of the infamous Dalton Gang, died.
Charles Elmer Hires1937 Charles Elmer Hires, the creator of Hires Root Beer, died.

1948 Idlewild Field (now John F. Kennedy International Airport) was dedicated.

1951 Japan Airlines was established.
Evonne Gollagong1951 Tennis player Evonne Goolagong was born.
Emanuel Haldeman-Julius1951 Emanuel Haldeman-Julius, publisher of the Little Blue Books series, was found dead in his swimming pool.

1953 The U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare was created.
Robert A. Taft1953 U.S. Senator Robert Alphonso Taft died.

1957 Actor Dirk Blocker was born.

Federation of Malaysia1962 The Federation of Malaysia was formed.
1962 Actor Wesley Snipes was born.

Ranger Program1964 Ranger 7 became the first U.S. spacecraft to successfully impact the moon's surface.
1964 Singer Jim Reeves died.

1965 Author J.K. Rowling was born.

1975 Teamsters Union president Jimmy Hoffa was last seen alive.

1988 The last Playboy club closed (in Lansing, Michigan).

Bosnia-Herzegovina1990 Bosnia-Herzegovina declared its independence.

King Baudoin1993 King Baudouin I of Belgium died.

2010 Musician Mitch Miller died.

2012 Author Gore Vidal died.

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The Robinson Library >> On This Day

This page was last updated on January 26, 2017.