29th July In History

July 29 is an immensely significant day in the history of sports, as it was on this day that Cuba’s Javier Sotomayor created a new world record in high jump by clearing the 8 feet mark. American athlete Carl Lewis won his fourth consecutive Olympic gold medal in the long jump on this very day. Other than this, in 1948 the first Summer Olympics were held after a gap of 12 years, because of World War II. Notable developments happened in the area of space exploration with the discovery of dwarf planet Eris and asteroid ‘15 Eunomia’. The first volume of the highly successful book ‘The Fellowship of the Ring’, penned by JRR Tolkien was published in the United Kingdom. On the political front, the United States and Japan signed ‘The Harris Treaty’ in 1858 and a referendum on abolishing the monarchy was held in Greece in the year 1973. To ensure the safe and peaceful use of nuclear energy the ‘International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)’ was established on this day. In a tragic incident, the lives of 134 service members were lost after a rocket fired accidentally on the U.S navy ship - the ‘USS Forrestal’.


HISTORICAL EVENTS ON 29th July



238

Politics

Praetorian Guard Murders Roman Emperors

It was on 29th July 238 that Praetorian Guard, the military force of the Roman emperor, assassinated Roman co-emperors Pupienus and Balbinus. Pupienus was an acclaimed soldier who was chosen along with Balbinus to check Maximinus.


615

Politics

Pakal Ascends The Throne Of Palenque City

In 615, twelve-year-old K'inich Janaab Pakal became the king of Palenque, an ancient Mayan city-state, situated in Mexico. Pakal, also called Sun Shield, ruled for 68 years and is counted among the most famous Mayan kings.


1848

Politics

Irish Revolt Against English Rule Is Thwarted

While Ireland was facing Potato Famine, a national revolt against the British rule was thwarted in the county of Tipperary, on 29th July, 1848. The revolt ended after Irish Nationalists or Young Irelanders led by William Smith O’Brien were overpowered and arrested.


1858

Politics

U.S And Japan Ink Harris Treaty

The Harris Treaty was signed between the United States and Japan in 1858 after the first U.S. consul to Japan, Townsend Harris, struck the deal. According to the agreement, America got commercial and diplomatic privileges in Japan and 5 ports were opened for trade with the U.S.


1899

Politics

The First Hague Convention Is Signed

On July 29, 1899, the First Hague Convention was signed at the international peace conference at Hague, situated in the Netherlands. The conference was held to form an agreement on the conduct of war, limitation of war and military forces.


1900

Politics

King Umberto I Is Assassinated By Gaetano Bresci

It was on this day in 1900 that Italy’s King Umberto I was assassinated by Italian American Gaetano Bresci in Monza, Italy. Umberto I had become quite authoritative and tried to suppress radical groups in the country like the anarchist movements.


1921

Politics

Hitler Becomes Leader Of Nazi Party

Former German chancellor Adolf Hitler became the leader of the National Socialist German Workers Party or Nazi Party on 29 July 1921. The party came to power in 1933 and Hitler governed Germany using dictatorial methods till 1945.


1973

Politics

Referendum On Monarchy Is Held In Greece

A referendum was held in Greece on July 29, 1973 to decide whether monarchy must be abolished or retained in which citizens voted in favor of abolishing the monarchy. After a civilian government was elected, a second referendum too opposed monarchy and Constantine, the King of Greece, had to accept the verdict.


1987

Politics

The Treaty Of Canterbury Is Signed Between Britain And France

The Treaty of Canterbury was signed by the former British Premier Margaret Thatcher and the then President of France François Mitterrand on 29th July, 1987. The treaty listed the conditions for the building of the Channel Tunnel, also known as Eurotunnel.


1987

Politics

The Indo-Sri Lanka Agreement Was Signed

Indian Prime Minister late Rajiv Gandhi and Sri Lankan President J.R. Jayewardene signed the Indo-Sri Lanka Agreement in Colombo on this day in 1987. The agreement did not bear any fruit, as India got involved in counter-insurgency war with the ‘Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)’ and the Sri Lankan president decided to send Indian soldiers back.


1014

Wars

Byzantine Emperor Basil II Defeats Bulgarian Army

Byzantine emperor Basil II comprehensively defeated the Bulgarian army led by Tsar Samouil on 29th July, 1014 in the Battle of Kleidion. The battle was fought in the mountains of Belasitsa (Belles) and Ograzhden in Bulgaria.


1588

Wars

English Navy Defeats ‘Invincible Armada’

The English naval army, led by Lord Charles Howard and Sir Francis Drake, defeated the Spanish fleet ‘Invincible Armada’, on 29th July, 1588. King Philip II of Spain sent the fleet to attack England, but the Spanish navy was forced to retreat.


1778

Wars

French Vice-Admiral Contacts Continental Army

During the American Revolution, French Vice-Admiral Count d’Estaing approached the Continental Army, which wanted his help to recapture Rhode Island, on this day in 1778. The ships of d’Estaing were able to pass through the Straits of Gibraltar without difficulty because the British failed to gauge the situation.


1862

Wars

Confederate Spy Belle Is Held By Union Forces

Marie Isabella ‘Belle’ Boyd who spied for the Confederates during the Civil War was arrested by the Union troops on 29th July, 1862. The Confederates were able to defeat General Nathaniel Banks’ forces at the Battle of Winchester because Boyd provided important information about the battle to General Thomas .J. ‘Stonewall’ Jackson.


1965

Wars

‘101st Airborne Division’ Lands In Vietnam

During the Vietnam War, the first batch of 4000 paratroopers of the ‘101st Airborne Division’ arrived at the Cam Ranh Bay in Vietnam, in 1965. The ‘101st Airborne Division’, part of the U.S army, conducted operations during the Normandy invasion and in Netherlands.


1972

Wars

U.S. Attorney General’s Trip To North Vietnam

To look into the U.S war crimes in Indo-china, former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark visited North Vietnam on 29th July, 1972. An ‘International Commission of Inquiry’ was formed to probe the alleged bombing of civilian places in North Vietnam during the Vietnam War.


1967

Disasters & Natural Calamities

Earthquake Hits Venezuelan City

A powerful earthquake, measuring 6.6 on the Richter scale, shook the capital city of Caracas in Venezuela in 1967. The earthquake’s epicenter was located in the Caribbean Sea and it caused the death of 245 people and wounded 2000 others.


1967

Disasters & Natural Calamities

Accidental Rocket Launch Kills 134 On The U.S Navy Ship

On 29th July 1967, a lethal fire broke out on the U.S navy ship - the ‘USS Forrestal’, when a rocket from the ship’s arsenal was launched accidentally. The ship was anchored near the coast of Vietnam and 134 service members died in the accident.


2013

Disasters & Natural Calamities

Two Passenger Trains Collide In Switzerland

It was on this day in 2013 that two passenger trains collided with each other at the Granges-près-Marnand in Switzerland. Of the 40 passengers in total, at least 35 people were grievously injured in the accident.


1913

Sports

Football Club Valerenga Fotball Is Founded

It was on 29th July, 1913 that the football club ‘Valerenga Fotball’ came into existence in Norway’s capital, Oslo. The club gets its name from the neighborhood of Valerenga and belongs to the multi-sport club ‘Valerengens IF’.


1948

Sports

Summer Olympics Held After 12 Years

In 1948, the first Summer Olympics since the 1936 games were organized, after a gap of 12 years because of the World War II. The opening ceremony of the games was held at Wembley Stadium in London and these games were the first to be broadcast on television.


1989

Sports

Sotomayor Sets World Record With 8ft High Jump

Cuba’s Javier Sotomayor became the first high jumper to clear the 8 feet mark and set a new world record on 29th July, 1989. Sotomayor achieved this feat in the Central American and Caribbean Championships held in San Juan.


1996

Sports

Carl Lewis Wins Fourth Consecutive Olympic Gold Medal

It was on this day in 1996 that American track and field athlete Frederick Carlton Lewis, popularly known as Carl Lewis, won his fourth consecutive Olympic gold medal in the long jump. Overall, Lewis won nine Olympic gold medals and the medal for long jump was the last gold medal of his career.


2007

Sports

Iraq Lifts The Asian Cup Football Title

The Iraqi football team defeated Saudi Arabia with a 1-0 score to clinch the 2007 AFC Asian Cup soccer title on this day in 2007. The match was held at the Gelora Bung Karno stadium in Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia.


1945

Literature & Entertainment

BBC Begins ‘Light Programme’ On Radio

The ‘British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)’ began the ‘Light Programmme’ on radio on this day, back in 1945. The programme offered entertainment and comedy for civilian listeners and was aired in place of the General Forces Program.


1954

Literature & Entertainment

The First Volume Of Novel The Fellowship Of The Ring’ Gets Published

It was on July 29, 1954 that the first volume of English author JRR Tolkien’s classic novel ‘The Fellowship of the Ring’ was published in the United Kingdom. The novel revolves around a ring made by the dark lord Sauron, which he has lost and wants to regain to possess special powers. However, a hobbit takes a journey to destroy the ring so that Sauron is unable to ruin Earth.


1957

Literature & Entertainment

Jack Paar Becomes ‘Tonight’ Show Host

Former game show host Jack Paar began hosting the American talk show ‘Tonight’ on this day in 1957. Paar’s one liner ‘I kid you not’ became a popular catchphrase and his presence alone increased the ratings of his show from 2.6, during its early days, to an impressive six, later.


1966

Literature & Entertainment

Christian Groups Protest Against Beatles Band

In 1966, fundamentalist Christian groups protested and asked followers to burn the renowned band Beatles’ albums and merchandise to protest against musician John Lennon’s statement that they were more popular than Jesus. The protest took place after U.S. teen magazine ‘Datebook’ reprinted Lennon’s comment in its August issue, which was put up on the stands on July 29.


1967

Literature & Entertainment

‘The Doors’ Get Their First Hit Song

It was on this day in 1967 that band ‘The Doors’ made waves for their first number one hit, after their song ‘Light My Fire’ topped the Billboard chart. The members of this immensely popular band were Ray Manzarek, Robby Krieger and John Densmore.


2000

Literature & Entertainment

Brad Pitt And Jennifer Aniston Get Married

Hollywood stars Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston tied the knot at Malibu, California on 29th July, 2000. The high-profile wedding took place amid tight security and about a whopping $1 million was spent on the event.


1836

Trivia

Arc De Triomphe Is Opened In Paris

The ‘Arc de Triomphe’ was inaugurated on July 29, 1836 in Paris, France. Napoleon I ordered the construction of the monument to commemorate the victories of the French armies.


1851

Trivia

Asteroid ‘15 Eunomia’ Was Discovered

Italian astronomer Annibale de Gasparis found an oval shaped asteroid named ‘15 Eunomia’, on this day in 1851. Asteroids are also known as minor planets which move around the Sun and are present in the asteroid belt between planets Mars and Jupiter.


1909

Trivia

‘General Motors’ Acquires ‘Cadillac Automobile Company’

The ‘General Motors Corporation’ (GM) bought the ‘Cadillac Automobile Company’ for $4.5 million, in the year 1909. The ‘Cadillac Car Company’, named after the French explorer Antoine Laumet de La Mothe Cadillac, was set up in 1902 and introduced the electric lighting system in the 1912 Cadillac model.


1914

Trivia

Russian Czar Sends Telegrams To Cousin

Several telegrams about the war that broke out in the Balkan region were exchanged between the monarch Czar Nicholas II of Russia and his first cousin Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany on 29th July, 1914. A month after Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife Sophie were assassinated by a Serbian nationalist, Austria and Hungary declared war on Serbia.


1914

Trivia

Cape Cod Canal Begins Operation

The Cape Cod Canal, an artificial waterway, was opened on this day in 1914 at Massachusetts, U.S.A. The canal, whose construction was started by the New York based financier August Belmont, decreased the distance between New York City and Boston.


1920

Trivia

Construction Work Of Link River Dam Begins

On 29th July 1920, the construction work on the Link River Dam, started at the Klamath Lake in Oregon, U.S. The Link River Dam is used to store and release water from the Upper Klamath Lake.


1957

Trivia

‘International Atomic Energy Agency’ Is Established

The Statute of the ‘International Atomic Energy Agency’ (IAEA) came into force on 29th July, 1957, leading to the formation of the ‘IAEA’. The ‘IAEA’ is an autonomous body and it won the Nobel Prize for Peace in 2005.


1958

Trivia

U.S Congress Passes NASA’s Legislation

A legislation to form the ‘National Aeronautics and Space Administration’ (NASA) was passed by the U.S Congress and former American President Dwight Eisenhower signed the act to enforce it in 1958. ‘NASA’ is an organization that works in the areas of space exploration, launch of satellites, gathering information about the atmosphere and the solar system and many others.


1968

Trivia

Pope Paul VI Approves Ban On Contraceptive Use

In 1968, Pope Paul VI reaffirmed the ban on the use of contraceptives by Roman Catholics, even though the Church commission recommended otherwise. The commission was of the view that the ban should be lifted since more women were being emancipated and safe contraceptives were available.


1973

Trivia

Roger Williamson Killed After Car Crash

British car race driver Roger Williamson was killed when his car crashed, possibly due to a tire burst, on 29th July, 1973, during the Dutch Grand Prix held in Netherlands. Williamson had won two British Formula Three championships in 1971 and 1972.


1976

Trivia

Son Of Sam Kills His First Victim

Serial Killer ‘Son of Sam’ killed his first victim Donna Lauria and wounded Jody Valenti, when they were seated in a car on 29th July, 1976. Son of Sam’s real name is David Berkowitz, who killed six people and injured seven others between 1976 and 1977 in New York City.


1980

Trivia

Iran Adopts Its Flag

It was on this day in 1980 that the Islamic Republic of Iran officially approved its flag after the Islamic Revolution. The flag has green, red, and white horizontal stripes with a red emblem in the middle.


1981

Trivia

Prince Charles Marries Lady Diana

Prince Charles, the successor to the British throne, married a school teacher, the late Lady Diana Spencer at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London on 29th July, 1981. The wedding was attended by 3500 guests and an unprecedented 750 million television viewers across the world watched the proceedings on TV, making it one of the highest viewed events.


1985

Trivia

‘NASA’ Launches Space Shuttle Mission ‘STS-51F Challenger’

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) Space Shuttle Mission ‘STS-51F Challenger’, was launched on this day in 1985. The mission was aimed to ascertain the performance of the Spacelab systems with the orbiter and to measure the environment generated by the vehicle in space


1993

Trivia

Israeli Court Acquits Demjanjuk

On 29th July 1993, John Demjanjuk, who was accused of being a Nazi death camp guard, was finally freed by the Israeli Supreme Court. The court overturned the decision because of reasonable doubts over the fact that Demjanjuk operated a gas chamber at the Treblinka death camp, in Poland, during the Nazi occupation.


1997

Trivia

Minamata Bay Declared Mercury Free

After 40 years of contamination because of industrial pollution, the Minamata Bay in Japan was declared free of mercury poisoning on 29th July, 1997. The consumption of contaminated fish from the Bay caused brain damage, loss of sight and other ailments in a large number of people.


2005

Trivia

The Discovery Of ‘Eris’ Was Made Public

It was on this day in 2005 that the discovery of the dwarf planet, Eris, which is apparently larger than Pluto, was revealed to the world. The dwarf planet was found by American astronomers Michael Brown, Chad Trujillo and David Rabinowitz.


2006

Trivia

The Declaration On LGBT Human Rights Is Adopted

The Declaration of Montreal was adopted at the International Conference on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) in Montreal, Canada, in 2006. The declaration contains the rights and freedom proposed to be granted to the LGBT community universally.


2008

Trivia

American President Approves Execution Of Soldier

It was on 29th July, 2008, that former American President George W. Bush allowed the execution of an American soldier in over fifty years. The marine, Private Ronald Gray, was a serial killer who committed four murders and eight rapes in Fayetteville, North Carolina, area in U.S.


2015

Trivia

Debris Of ‘Malaysia Airlines’ Flight MH 370 Found

It was on 29th July 2015 that the debris, believed to be that of the ‘Boeing 777’ aircraft of ‘Malaysia Airlines’ was found on France's Reunion Island. The aircraft was on its way to Beijing in March 2014, when it went missing and all 239 passengers and crew on board were presumed to be dead.


People Born This Day

Alexis de Tocqueville
(1805-1859)
[ French ]
Benito Mussolini
(1883-1945)
Former Duce [ Italian ]
Diana Vreeland
(1906-1989)
Magazine editor, fashion journalist and special consultant [ American ]
Don Marquis
(1878-1937)
[ American ]
Geddy Lee
(1953-)
[ Canadian ]
Paul Taylor
(1930-)
One of the foremost American choreographers of the 20th century [ American ]
Ken Burns
(1953-)
Documentary Filmmaker [ American ]
Clara Bow
(1905-1965)
Actress [ American ]
Dag Hammarskjöld
(1905-1961)
Second Secretary-General of the United Nations [ Swedish ]
J. R. D. Tata
(1904-1993)
[ Indian ]
Sigmund Romberg
(1887-1951)
Composer [ American ]
Li Ka-shing
(1928-)
Entrepreneur [ Canadian ]
Isidor Isaac Rabi
(1898-1988)
Physicist [ American ]
Daniel McFadden
(1937-)
Economist [ American ]
Eva Gutowski
(1994-)
YouTuber and vlogger [ American ]
Joey Essex
(1990-)
Television Personality [ British ]
Amy Lee33
(1987-)
YouTuber, Vlogger [ British ]
Cameron Dolan
(1997-)
Instagram Star [ American ]
Jake Smollett
(1989-)
Actor [ American ]
Shin Se-kyung
(1990-)
Actress [ South Korean ]


People Died This Day

Robert Schumann
(1810-1856)
Composer, Aesthete and Music Critic [ German ]
René Gerónimo Favaloro
(1923-2000)
Cardiovascular Surgeon [ Argentine ]
Vincent van Gogh
(1853-1890)
Painter [ French ]
William Wilberforce
(1759-1833)
Abolitionist [ British ]
Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar
(1820-1891)
Social Reformer, Philosopher [ Indian ]
Aruna Asaf Ali
(1909-1996)
Indian Independence Activist [ Indian ]
Dorothy Hodgkin
(1910-1994)
Biochemist [ British ]
Jerome Robbins
(1918-1998)
Dance Choreographer [ American ]
David Niven
(1910-1983)
Actor [ British ]
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