Today in History: Jan. 28
by Robert Joseph Baker | January 28, 2018 12:00 am
Last Updated: January 14, 2018 at 12:31 am
661 – The Rashidun Caliphate is effectively ended with the assassination of Ali, the last caliph.
814 – Charlemagne dies of pleurisy in Aachen as the first Holy Roman Emperor. He is succeeded by his son Louis the Pious as king of the Frankish Empire.
946 – Caliph Al-Mustakfi is blinded and deposed by Emir Mu’izz al-Dawla, ruler of the Buyid Empire. He is succeeded by Al-Muti as caliph of the Abbasid Caliphate.
1069 – Robert de Comines, the Earl of Northumbria, is killed while attempting to subdue rebels in Durham, England. This leads to the Harrying of the North by William the Conqueror.
1077 – Walk to Canossa: The excommunication of Henry IV, Holy Roman Emperor is lifted.
1393 – King Charles VI of France is nearly killed when several dancers’ costumes catch fire during a masquerade ball.
1521 – The Diet of Worms begins, lasting until May 25.
1547 – Henry VIII dies. His nine-year-old son, Edward VI, becomes king.
1573 – Articles of the Warsaw Confederation are signed, sanctioning freedom of religion in Poland.
1624 – Sir Thomas Warner founds the first British colony in the Caribbean, on the island of Saint Kitts.
1724 – The Russian Academy of Sciences is founded in St. Petersburg by Peter the Great, and implemented by Senate decree. It is called the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences until 1917.
1754 – Sir Horace Walpole coins the word serendipity in a letter to a friend.
1813 – Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice is first published in the United Kingdom.
1820 – A Russian expedition led by Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen and Mikhail Petrovich Lazarev discovers the Antarctic continent, approaching the Antarctic coast.
1846 – The Battle of Aliwal, India, is won by British troops commanded by Sir Harry Smith.
1851 – Northwestern University becomes the first chartered university in Illinois.
1855 – A locomotive on the Panama Canal Railway runs from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean for the first time.
1871 – Franco-Prussian War: The Siege of Paris ends in French defeat and an armistice.
1878 – Yale Daily News becomes the first daily college newspaper in the United States.
1896 – Walter Arnold of East Peckham, Kent, becomes the first person to be convicted of speeding. He was fined one shilling, plus costs, for speeding at 8 mph (13 km/h), thereby exceeding the contemporary speed limit of 2 mph (3.2 km/h).
1902 – The Carnegie Institution of Washington is founded in Washington, D.C. with a $10 million gift from Andrew Carnegie.
1908 – Members of the Portuguese Republican Party fail in their attempted coup d’état against the administrative dictatorship of Prime Minister João Franco.
1909 – United States troops leave Cuba with the exception of Guantanamo Bay Naval Base after being there since the Spanish–American War.
1915 – An act of the U.S. Congress creates the United States Coast Guard as a branch of the United States Armed Forces.
1918 – Finnish Civil War: The Red Guard rebels seize control of the capital, Helsinki; members of the Senate of Finland go underground.
1920 – Foundation of the Spanish Legion.
1922 – Knickerbocker Storm, Washington D.C.’s biggest snowfall, causes the city’s greatest loss of life when the roof of the Knickerbocker Theatre collapses.
1932 – Japanese forces attack Shanghai.
1933 – The name Pakistan is coined by Choudhry Rahmat Ali Khan and is accepted by Indian Muslims who then thereby adopted it further for the Pakistan Movement seeking independence.
1935 – Iceland becomes the first Western country to legalize therapeutic abortion.
1938 – The World Land Speed Record on a public road is broken by Rudolf Caracciola in the Mercedes-Benz W195 at a speed of 432.7 kilometres per hour (268.9 mph).
1941 – Franco-Thai War: Final air battle of the conflict. A Japanese-mediated armistice goes into effect later in the day.
1945 – World War II: Supplies begin to reach the Republic of China over the newly reopened Burma Road.
1956 – Elvis Presley makes his first American television appearance.
1958 – The Lego company patents the design of its Lego bricks, still compatible with bricks produced today.
1960 – The National Football League announced expansion teams for Dallas to start in the 1960 NFL season and Minneapolis-St. Paul for 1961 NFL season.
1964 – An unarmed United States Air Force T-39 Sabreliner on a training mission is shot down over Erfurt, East Germany, by a Soviet MiG-19.
1965 – The current design of the Flag of Canada is chosen by an act of Parliament.
1977 – The first day of the Great Lakes Blizzard of 1977 which dumps 10 feet (3.0 m) of snow in one day in Upstate New York, with Buffalo, Syracuse, Watertown, and surrounding areas are most affected.
1980 – USCGC Blackthorn collides with the tanker Capricorn while leaving Tampa, Florida and capsizes, killing 23 Coast Guard crewmembers.
1981 – Ronald Reagan lifts remaining domestic petroleum price and allocation controls in the United States helping to end the 1979 energy crisis and begin the 1980s oil glut.
1982 – US Army general James L. Dozier is rescued by Italian anti-terrorism forces from captivity by the Red Brigades.
1984 – Tropical Storm Domoina makes landfall in southern Mozambique, eventually causing 214 deaths and some of the most severe flooding so far recorded in the region.
1985 – Supergroup USA for Africa (United Support of Artists for Africa) records the hit single We Are the World, to help raise funds for Ethiopian famine relief.
1986 – Space Shuttle program: STS-51-L mission: Space Shuttle Challenger explodes after liftoff, killing all seven astronauts on board.
1988 – In R v Morgentaler the Supreme Court of Canada strikes down all anti-abortion laws.
2002 – TAME Flight 120, a Boeing 727-100 crashes in the Andes mountains in southern Colombia, killing 92.
2006 – The roof of one of the buildings at the Katowice International Fair in Poland, collapses due to the weight of snow, killing 65 and injuring more than 170 others.