What happened on this day – August 5?

History, in illuminating the past, illuminates the present, and in illuminating the present, illuminates the future. – Benjamin Cardozo.

On this day:

910 – The last major Viking army to raid England was defeated at the Battle of Tettenhall by the allied forces of Mercia and Wessex, led by King Edward and Earl Aethelred.

1100 – Henry I was crowned King of England.

1305 – William Wallace, who led Scottish resistance to England, is captured by the English near Glasgow and transported to London for trial and execution.

1583 – Humphrey Gilbert claims Newfoundland for the British crown – first English colony in North America and the beginning of the British Empire.

1620 – The Mayflower departs from Southampton, England, carrying would-be settlers, on its first attempt to reach North America; it is forced to dock in Dartmouth when its companion ship, the Speedwell, springs a leak.

1812 – War of 1812: Tecumseh’s Native American force ambushes Thomas Van Horne’s 200 Americans at Brownstone Creek, causing them to flee and retreat.

1858 – First transatlantic telegraph cable lands at Trinity Bay, Newfoundland spearheaded by Cyrus West Field (will fail after 3 weeks).

1884 – Cornerstone for Statue of Liberty was laid on Bedloe’s Island.

1901 – Peter O’Connor sets the first IAAF recognized long jump world record of 24 ft 11.75 in (7.6137 m), a record that would stand for 20 years.

1905 – First meeting of the Russian and Japanese peace commissioners takes place in US President Theodore Roosevelt’s home at Oyster Bay, New York.

1918 – World War I: the last German air raid on England occurs, with four Zeppelin airships dropping bombs in the Midlands and North East England.

1926 – Magician and Escape Artist Harry Houdini stayed in a coffin under water for 1½ hrs before escaping.

1953 – “From Here to Eternity” based on a book by James Jones, directed by Fred Zinnemann and starring Burt Lancaster, Montgomery Clift and Frank Sinatra was released, which won the Academy Award for Best Picture in 1954.

1960 – Upper Volta—now Burkina Faso, which means “Land of Incorruptible People,” a landlocked country in western Africa—proclaimed its independence, ending more than 60 years of French rule.

1962 – American actress Marilyn Monroe is found dead at her home from a drug overdose.

1965 – The Indo-Pakistani War of 1965 begins as Pakistani soldiers cross the Line of Control dressed as locals.

1969 – Pirates outfielder Willie Stargell smashes first and longest home run ever hit out of Dodger Stadium; the incomparable shot off Alan Foster, measures 506 feet.

1981 – U.S. President Ronald Reagan fired more than 11,000 air traffic controllers who were on strike.

1984 – American Joan Benoit wins first Olympic marathon for women (2:24:52) ahead of Grete Waitz of Norway at the Los Angeles Games.

1998 – The American spin-off “Whose Line Is It Anyway?”, starring Ryan Stiles, Colin Mochrie, and Wayne Brady, debuted on ABC.

2010 – Thirty-three workers became trapped after a mine in the Atacama Desert of Chile collapsed, and the resulting rescue took 69 days, attracting international attention.

2011 – Thai businesswoman and politician Yingluck Shinawatra was elected Prime Minister of Thailand, becoming the first woman to hold that post.

2019 – Revocation of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir (state in India) occurred and the state was bifurcated into two union territories viz Jammu and Kashmir (union territory) and Ladakh.

2020 – Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the Cornerstone – a 22.6 kg silver brick of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya, India, in the Ram Mandir Bhumi Pooja ceremony, ending the Hindu-Muslim dispute that started in the 15th century.

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