What’s on July 24th? A RAF firestorm, forced abdications, and bombastic land grabs? July 24 is a day in history that is full of pivotal movements that have reverberated throughout the centuries. So, who was forced to give up the throne, and what country thought it was okay to yell “mine!” when coming across thousands of miles of open countryside? Let’s find out on this day, that age in history.
Famous Historical Events
1534: Jacques Cartier, a French explorer, lands in Canada. What did he do? Well, what any nationalist explorer of the olden days worth his salt did. He claimed the land for France.
1567: At this time in history, there was a lot of fighting going on over the English and Scottish thrones. On this day in history, Mary Queen of Scots is forced to abdicate the Scottish throne in favor of her one-year-old son, James. Because, he could totally rule the country from his cradle. But wait, it doesn’t end there.
Nineteen years later, people were still plotting and scheming for the throne. A plot to murder the English Queen Elizabeth the First is uncovered, and Mary is implicated and brought to trial. She is executed a year later, and her son eventually takes the English throne upon Elizabeth’s death in 1603. What a loving family those English and Scottish monarchs were.
1823: On this day in history, slavery is abolished in Chile. At this time, Chile is only the second South American country to ban slavery. Haiti was the first.
1911: Machu Picchu is rediscovered. It’s not that it ever really went away, but it was left uninhabited from the 15th century onwards. American Hiram Bingham the Third found the abandoned site. Since then, it’s become a famous tourist destination in Peru.
1943: Operation Gomorrah commences on this day in history, July 24. The RAF starts obliterating Hamburg, Germany. The bombings create a firestorm which kills approximately 42,600 people.
1959: The Kitchen Debate between Nixon and Kruschev commences, and there wasn’t anything hospitable about it. Why was it called The Kitchen Debate? The impromptu episode occurred during the unveiling of the American National Exhibit in Moscow. VP Nixon and Kruschev were standing in the kitchen of a model set up when they started a heated discussion about the merits of capitalism versus communism. The Kitchen Debate is considered one of the most famous episodes of the Cold War.
1821: Bill the Butcher
William Poole, or Bill the Butcher, is born on this day in history in New Jersey. He was the leader of the NYC gang the Bowery Boys, and the inspiration for Martin Scorcese’s character in Gangs of New York. Poole was also the leader of the local chapter of the Know-Nothings, a prominent political party that didn’t like immigrants and were especially wary of Catholics. The more things change . . . Poole died at the tender age of 33 from a gunshot wound.
1980: Peter Sellers
The Pink Panther was not just a cartoon, but a live-action series featuring the beloved comic actor Peter Sellers in the lead role as the bumbling Chief Inspector Clouseau. Sellers was nominated for an Academy Award three times, eventually going on to win both a Golden Globe and a Bafta Award. He died of a heart attack at 54.
July 24 is a day in history where several seemingly unrelated and insignificant things created ripples across time. What will happen in the future? Who knows, but at least us modern humans have easy access to these little factoids thanks to the internet.