On This Day in History July 26

July 26 – Events:

  • 657 – Battle of Siffin.
  • 811 – Battle of Pliska; Byzantine emperor Nicephorus I is slain, his heir Stauracius is seriously wounded.
  • 920 – Rout of an alliance of Christian troops from Navarre and Léon against the Muslims at Pamplona.
  • 1139 – Afonso, then a count, is proclaimed first king of Portugal and declares independence from Leon.
  • 1309 – Henry VII is recognized King of the Romans by Pope Clement V.
  • 1469 – Wars of the Roses: Battle of Edgecote Moor – Pitting the forces of Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick against those of King Edward IV.
  • 1581 – Plakkaat van Verlatinghe (Oath of Abjuration). The declaration of independence of the northern Low Countries from the Spanish king, Philip II.
  • 1775 – The birth of what would later become the United States Post Office Department was established by the Second Continental Congress.
  • 1788 – New York ratifies the United States Constitution and becomes the 11th state of the United States.
  • 1803 – The Surrey Iron Railway, arguably the world’s first public railway, opens in south London.
  • 1822 – José de San Martín arrives in Guayaquil, Ecuador, to meet with Simón Bolívar.
  • 1847 – Liberia declares independence.
  • 1861 – American Civil War: George B. McClellan assumes command of the Army of the Potomac following a disastrous Union defeat at the First Battle of Bull Run.
  • 1863 – American Civil War: Morgan’s Raid ends – At Salineville, Ohio, Confederate cavalry leader John Hunt Morgan and 360 of his volunteers are captured by Union forces.
  • 1878 – In California, the poet and American West outlaw calling himself “Black Bart” makes his last clean getaway when he steals a safe box from a Wells Fargo stagecoach. The empty box will be found later with a taunting poem inside.
  • 1882 – Premiere of Richard Wagner’s Parsifal at Bayreuth.
  • 1891 – France annexes Tahiti.
  • 1908 – United States Attorney General Charles Joseph Bonaparte issues an order to immediately staff the Office of the Chief Examiner (later renamed the Federal Bureau of Investigation).
  • 1914 – Serbia and Bulgaria interrupt diplomatic relationship.
  • 1934 – Assassination of Austrian Chancellor Engelbert Dollfuss.
  • 1936 – The Axis Powers decide to intervene in the Spanish Civil War.
  • 1937 – End of the Battle of Brunete in the Spanish Civil War.
  • 1941 – World War II: In response to the Japanese occupation of French Indo-China, US President Franklin D. Roosevelt orders the seizure of all Japanese assets in the United States.
  • 1944 – World War II: Soviet army enters Lviv, major city of western Ukraine, liberating it from the Nazis. Only 300 Jewish survivors left, out of 160,000 Jews in Lviv prior to Nazi occupation.
  • 1944 – The first German V-2 rocket hits Great Britain.
  • 1945 – The Labour Party wins the United Kingdom general election of July 5 by a landslide, removing Winston Churchill from power.
  • 1945 – The Potsdam Declaration is signed in Potsdam, Germany.
  • 1945 – The US Navy cruiser Indianapolis arrives at Tinian with the warhead for the Hiroshima atomic bomb.
  • 1947 – Cold War: U.S. President Harry S. Truman signs the National Security Act into United States law creating the Central Intelligence Agency, Department of Defense, Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the National Security Council.
  • 1948 – U.S. President Harry S. Truman signs Executive Order 9981 desegregating the military of the United States.
  • 1952 – King Farouk of Egypt abdicates in favor of his son Fuad.
  • 1953 – Fidel Castro leads an unsuccessful attack on the Moncada Barracks, thus beginning the Cuban Revolution.
  • 1953 – Arizona Governor John Howard Pyle orders an anti-polygamy law enforcement crackdown on residents of Short Creek, Arizona, which becomes known as the Short Creek Raid.
  • 1956 – Following the World Bank’s decline to fund building the Aswan High Dam, Egyptian leader Gamal Abdel Nasser nationalizes the Suez Canal sparking international condemnation.
  • 1957 – Carlos Castillo Armas, dictator of Guatemala, is assassinated
  • 1958 – Explorer program: Explorer 4 is launched.
  • 1962 – Paula Abdul, American singer and choreographer
  • 1963 – Syncom 2, the world’s first geosynchronous satellite, is launched from Cape Canaveral on a Delta B booster.
  • 1963 – Earthquake in Skopje, Republic of Macedonia (formerly part of Yugoslavia) – 1100 dead.
  • 1963 – The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development votes to admit Japan.
  • 1965 – Full independence was granted to the Maldives.
  • 1966 – Lord Gardiner issues the Practice Statement in the House of Lords stating that the House is not bound to follow its own previous precedent.
  • 1968 – Vietnam War: South Vietnamese opposition leader Truong Dinh Dzu is sentenced to five years hard labor for advocating the formation of a coalition government as a way to move toward an end to the war.
  • 1971 – Apollo Program: Apollo 15 Mission – Launch of Apollo 15.
  • 1974 – Greek Prime Minister Constantin Caramanlis forms the country’s first civil government after seven years of military rule.
  • 1975 – Formation of a military triumvirate in Portugal.
  • 1977 – The National Assembly of Quebec imposes the use of French as the official language of the provincial government.
  • 1989 – A federal grand jury indicts Cornell University student Robert T. Morris, Jr. for releasing the Morris worm, thus becoming the first person to be prosecuted under the 1986 Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.
  • 1993 – Italian Democrazia Cristian changes its name to People’s Party.
  • 1994 – Russian President Boris Yeltsin orders the removal of Russian troops from Estonia.
  • 2005 – Space Shuttle program: STS-114 Mission – Launch of Discovery, NASA’s first scheduled flight mission after the Columbia Disaster in 2003.
  • 2005 – Mumbai, India receives 99.5cm of rain within 24 hours, bringing the city to a halt for over 2 days.

July 26 – Birthdays:

  • 1030 – Stanislaus of Szczepanów, St. Stanislaw (d. 1079)
  • 1678 – Joseph I, Holy Roman Emperor (d. 1711)
  • 1782 – John Field, Irish composer (d. 1837)
  • 1791 – Franz Xaver Wolfgang Mozart, composer (d. 1844)
  • 1802 – Mariano Arista, President of Mexico (d. 1855)
  • 1829 – Auguste Marie Francois Beernaert, Belgian statesman, Nobel Laureate (d. 1912)
  • 1846 – Texas Jack Omohundro, American frontier scout, actor, and cowboy (d. 1880)
  • 1855 – Ferdinand Tönnies, German sociologist (d. 1936)
  • 1856 – George Bernard Shaw, Irish writer, Nobel Laureate (d. 1950)
  • 1865 – Philipp Scheidemann, 1st Chancellors of the Weimar Republic (d. 1939)
  • 1874 – Serge Koussevitsky, Russian conductor (d. 1951)
  • 1875 – Carl Jung, Swiss psychiatrist (d. 1961)
  • 1875 – Antonio Machado, Spanish poet (d. 1939)
  • 1880 – Volodymyr Vynnychenko, Ukrainian statesman (d. 1951)
  • 1885 – André Maurois, French author (d. 1967)
  • 1886 – Lars Hanson, Swedish actor (d. 1965)
  • 1892 – Sam Jones, American baseball player (d. 1966)
  • 1894 – Aldous Huxley, English-born author (d. 1963)
  • 1895 – Jane Bunford, Britain’s tallest ever person (d. 1922)
  • 1895 – Gracie Allen, American actress and comedian (d. 1964)
  • 1896 – Henry Birkin, British racing driver (d. 1933)
  • 1897 – Paul Gallico, American author (d. 1976)
  • 1903 – Estes Kefauver, U.S. Senator from Tennessee (d. 1963)
  • 1906 – Irena Illakowicz, Polish agent of Intelligence (d. 1943)
  • 1909 – Peter Thorneycroft, British politician (d. 1994)
  • 1909 – Vivian Vance, American actress (d. 1979)
  • 1914 – Erskine Hawkins, American musician and bandleader (d. 1993)
  • 1914 – Ellis Kinder, American baseball player (d. 1968)
  • 1918 – Marjorie Lord, American actress
  • 1919 – Virginia Gilmore, American actress (d. 1986)
  • 1920 – Bob Waterfield, American football player (d. 1983)
  • 1921 – Jean Shepherd, American writer (d. 1999)
  • 1922 – Blake Edwards, American film director
  • 1922 – Jason Robards, American actor (d. 2000)
  • 1923 – Jan Berenstain, American author
  • 1923 – Hoyt Wilhelm, American baseball player (d. 2002)
  • 1925 – Jerzy Einhorn, Polish-Swedish doctor, researcher and politician (d. 2000)
  • 1926 – James Best, American actor
  • 1926 – Ana María Matute, Spanish author
  • 1928 – Don Beauman, British racing driver (d. 1955)
  • 1928 – Francesco Cossiga, 8th President of the Italian Republic
  • 1928 – Ibn-e-Safi, Pakistani fiction writer and Urdu poet (d. 1980)
  • 1928 – Stanley Kubrick, American film director (d. 1999)
  • 1928 – Peter Lougheed, Canadian politician
  • 1929 – Marc Lalonde, French Canadian politician
  • 1929 – Alexis Weissenberg, Bulgarian-born French pianist
  • 1931 – Takashi Ono, Japanese gymnast
  • 1936 – Mary Millar, English actress (d. 1998)
  • 1938 – Bobby Hebb, American musician
  • 1938 – Darlene Love, American singer
  • 1939 – John Howard, 25th Prime Minister of Australia
  • 1939 – Bob Lilly, American football player
  • 1940 – Dobie Gray, American singer
  • 1940 – Mary Jo Kopechne, American aide to Robert F. Kennedy (d. 1969)
  • 1940 – Tolis Voskopoulos, Greek singer
  • 1941 – Brenton Wood, American singer-songwriter
  • 1942 – Vladimír Meciar, Slovak prime minister
  • 1942 – Teddy Pilette, Belgian racing driver
  • 1943 – Peter Hyams, American film director
  • 1943 – Mick Jagger, English singer (The Rolling Stones)
  • 1944 – Kiel Martin, American actor (d. 1990)
  • 1945 – Helen Mirren, English actress
  • 1949 – Roger Taylor, English musician (Queen)
  • 1949 – Thaksin Shinawatra, ex-Prime Minister of Thailand
  • 1950 – Susan George, English actress
  • 1950 – Nelinho, Brazilian footballer
  • 1950 – Rich Vogler, American race car driver (d. 1990)
  • 1951 – Rick Martin, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1953 – Robert Phillips, classical guitarist
  • 1954 – Vitas Gerulaitis, American tennis player (d. 1994)
  • 1956 – Dorothy Hamill, American figure skater
  • 1957 – Nana Visitor, American actress
  • 1957 – Yuen Biao, Hong Kong actor
  • 1959 – Rick Bragg, American writer
  • 1959 – Kevin Spacey, American actor
  • 1959 – Michael Ross, American serial killer (d. 2005)
  • 1961 – Gary Cherone, American musician (Extreme)
  • 1961 – Andy Connell, English musician (Swing Out Sister, A Certain Ratio)
  • 1961 – Keiko Matsui, Japanese musician and composer
  • 1961 – Dimitris Saravakos, Greek footballer
  • 1964 – Sandra Bullock, American actress
  • 1964 – Danny Woodburn, American actor
  • 1964 – Ralf Metzenmacher, German painter and designer
  • 1965 – Jeremy Piven, American actor
  • 1965 – Jim Lindberg, American musician (Pennywise)
  • 1967 – Tim Schafer, American computer game designer
  • 1968 – Olivia Williams, English actress
  • 1970 – Joan Wasser, American singer/songwriter/violinist
  • 1973 – Kate Beckinsale, British actress
  • 1973 – Lenka Šarounová, Czech astronomer
  • 1974 – Dean Sturridge, English Footballer
  • 1974 – Daniel Negreanu, Canadian poker player
  • 1974 – Dan Konopka, American Drummer in OK Go
  • 1976 – Brad Wilkins, American Architect
  • 1977 – Martin Laursen, Danish footballer
  • 1977 – Rebecca St. James, Australian-born singer
  • 1979 – Peter Sarno, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1979 – Erik Westrum, American ice hockey player
  • 1980 – Dave Baksh, Canadian guitarist (Sum 41)
  • 1980 – Lee Dong-gun, South Korean actor
  • 1981 – Abe Forsythe, Australian actor/director
  • 1982 – Chez Starbuck, American actor
  • 1983 – Delonte West, American basketball player
  • 1983 – Roderick Strong, American professional wrestler
  • 1985 – Gaël Clichy, French footballer
  • 1985 – Audrey De Montigny, Quebec singer
  • 1987 – Miriam McDonald, Canadian actress
  • 1988 – Lara Jean Marshall, Australian actress
  • 1993 – Taylor Momsen, American actress

July 26 – Deaths:

  • 796 – Offa, King of Mercia
  • 811 – Nicephorus I, Byzantine Emperor (killed in battle)
  • 1380 – Emperor Komyo of Japan (b. 1322)
  • 1471 – Pope Paul II (b. 1417)
  • 1592 – Armand de Gontaut, baron de Biron, French soldier (b. 1524)
  • 1611 – Horio Yoshiharu, Japanese warlord (b. 1542)
  • 1680 – John Wilmot, 2nd Earl of Rochester, English writer (b. 1647)
  • 1684 – Elena Cornaro Piscopia, Italian mathematician (b. 1646)
  • 1712 – Thomas Osborne, 1st Duke of Leeds, English statesman (b. 1631)
  • 1723 – Robert Bertie, 1st Duke of Ancaster and Kesteven, English statesman (b. 1660)
  • 1863 – Sam Houston, President of the Republic of Texas (b. 1793)
  • 1867 – King Otto of Greece (b. 1815)
  • 1919 – Sir Edward Poynter, British painter (b. 1836)
  • 1925 – Gottlob Frege, German mathematician and logician (b. 1848)
  • 1925 – William Jennings Bryan, American politician (b. 1860)
  • 1925 – Antonio Ascari, Italian racing driver (b. 1888)
  • 1932 – Frederick S. Duesenberg automotive pioneer (b. 1876)
  • 1935 – Winsor McCay, American cartoonist (b. 1871)
  • 1941 – Henri Lebesgue, French mathematician (b. 1875)
  • 1942 – Roberto Arlt, Argentinian writer (b. 1900)
  • 1952 – Eva Perón, wife of Argentine President Juan Perón (b. 1919)
  • 1953 – Nikolaos Plastiras, Greek general and politician (b. 1883)
  • 1960 – Maud Menten, Canadian biochemist (b. 1879)
  • 1960 – Cedric Gibbons, American art director (b. 1893)
  • 1964 – Francis Curzon, 5th Earl Howe, British politician, naval officer and racing driver (b. 1884)
  • 1969 – Frank Loesser, American composer (b. 1910)
  • 1970 – Robert Taschereau, French Canadian lawyer and Chief Justice of Canada (b. 1896)
  • 1971 – Diane Arbus, American photographer (suicide) (b. 1923)
  • 1980 – Ibn-e-Safi, Pakistani fiction writer and Urdu poet (b. 1928)
  • 1984 – George Gallup, American statistician and opinion pollster (b. 1901)
  • 1984 – Ed Gein, American serial killer (b. 1906)
  • 1986 – Averell Harriman, American diplomat (b. 1891)
  • 1988 – Fazlur Rahman, Pakistani scholar (b. 1919)
  • 1990 – Brent Mydland, American keyboardist (Grateful Dead) (b. 1952)
  • 1992 – Mary Wells, American singer (b. 1943)
  • 1993 – Matthew Ridgeway, American army general (b. 1895)
  • 1995 – Laurindo Almeida, Brazilian guitarist (b. 1917)
  • 1995 – Raymond Mailloux, Quebec politician (b. 1918)
  • 1995 – George Romney, American businessman and politician (b. 1907)
  • 2000 – John Tukey, American statistician (b. 1915)
  • 2001 – Rex Barber, American WWII aviator (b. 1917)
  • 2001 – Peter von Zahn, German journalist (b. 1913)
  • 2005 – Betty Astell, British actress (b. 1912)
  • 2005 – Alexander Golitzen, American art director (b. 1908)
  • 2005 – Jack Hirshleifer, American economist (b. 1925)
  • 2005 – Gilles Marotte, Canadian ice hockey player (b. 1945)
  • 2007 – Lars Forssell, Swedish writer, member of the Swedish Academy (b. 1928)
  • 2007 – John Normington, English actor (b. 1937)
  • 2007 – Skip Prosser, American basketball coach (b. 1950)

July 26 – Holidays:

  • There are no holidays or observances for this date.
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