Coat of Arms of CanadaJuly 1

1867, the British Parliament passed the first of several British North America Acts. The first granted Canada its sovereignty as the Dominion of Canada with self-rule. The Act, or abbreviated as BNA, also structured a majority of Canada’s constitution. In 1982, Canada’s Parliament renamed it the Constitution Act of 1867. It can also be called Canada’s independence day. In 1867, Canada consisted only of Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, Ontario and Quebec.

July 2

1900, German Count Ferdinand Graf Von Zeppelin demonstrated a flight of a hydrogen filled airship. Commonly known as a blimp, the dirigibles became known for their use in military bombardments during WWI and trans-Atlantic flights before commercial jets were produced.

July 3

1775, by appointment of the Continental Congress, George Washington formally assumed command of the Continental Army, at Cambridge, Massachusetts.

1863, the final day of battle ended with Pickett’s charge at the Battle of Gettysburg. President Lincoln made a speech here on November 19, 1863 at the dedication of the Soldiers’ National Cemetery.

1883, Karl Benz officially demonstrated his Patent-Motorwagen in Mannheim, Germany. It was a three-wheeled gasoline powered vehicle, now considered the first vehicle designed to be operated with an engine. A month later, his wife, Bertha Benz, demonstrated the durability of the vehicle and made the first ever long distance road trip by an automobile, taking her two sons with her from Mannheim to her hometown of Pforzheim, approximately 61 miles away. Her route has since been commemorated and marked with signs. It travels south through Heidelberg and Wiesloch then to Pforzheim. Top speed on the Patent-Motorwagen #3 was 10 mph, so the trip would have taken more than six hours to complete.

July 4

1939, at Yankee Stadium, Lou Gehrig announced his retirement from baseball with his disclosure of his failing health due to the fatal disease Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) which is now commonly called Lou Gehrig’s disease.

July 5

1950, the Knesset in Israel passed the “Law of Return” which permits all Jews the right to immigrate to Israel.

1957, Althea Gibson was the first black female to win at Wimbledon.

July 6

1944, 2LT Jackie Robinson refused to move to the back of the bus at Fort Hood, Texas. His refusal led to a court-martial instead of going overseas with his unit, the 761st Black Panthers Tank Battalion. He went to Camp Breckinridge, Kentucky where he met a former baseball player from the Kansas City Monarchs who encouraged him to try out. The Monarchs gave Robinson an offer to play for $400/month, starting in 1945.

July 8

1776, Col. Nixon gave the first public reading of the Declaration of Independence to a crowd that had gathered in Independence Square in Philadelphia.

July 9

1777, New York elected its first governor, Brigadier General George Clinton. Clinton was a good friend of George Washington, and served as Vice President of the United States under Presidents Thomas Jefferson and James Madison. George Clinton was the longest serving governor of New York and holds the record as the longest serving governor in the United States.

1900, Queen Victoria of England assented to the Act creating the Commonwealth of Australia, thereby uniting the separate colonies in Australia under one federal government. The Act would take effect on January 1, 1901.

July 10

1553, Lady Jane Grey assumed the throne upon the death of England’s King Edward VI. Edward was only 15 years old when he died, but had patent papers signed and his will witnessed naming Jane as his heir. Even with this in place, Mary, Edward’s half-sister, was proclaimed the rightful queen on the 19th of July. Lady Jane was imprisoned, tried and executed for committing treason and acting as a usurper, along with her husband, Guilford Dudley, whom she had just married in May. Jane is also known as the “Nine Days Queen.”

July 11

1798, the U.S. Marines are re-established after having been disbanded at the end of the American Revolutionary War in 1783.

1864, Confederate forces under command of General Jubal Early attempted to invade the city of Washington, D.C. but diverted the next day. During the two days of battle, President Lincoln, his wife and a few Army officers viewed the skirmishes from a parapet in Fort Stevens. During the viewing, an Army officer was wounded who was standing next to the President. The President was quickly ordered to take cover.

1952, General Dwight Eisenhower was nominated as the Republican presidential candidate.

July 12

1543, King Henry VIII married his sixth and final wife, Catherine Parr at Hampton Court Palace.

1862, the Medal of Honor is authorized by the U.S. Congress.

July 14Quentin Roosevelt

1918, former president Theodore Roosevelt’s fourth son, Quentin, was shot down by German pilots while engaged in battle over the Marne River over France. His plane crashed behind enemy lines near the village of Chamery.

July 15

1903, newly formed Ford Motor Company received its first order for an $850 two-cylinder Model A. The order was placed by a dentist in Chicago and the vehicle was delivered a little over a week later. Within two months, 215 vehicles were sold and by years end 1,000 cars had been manufactured at the Mack Avenue plant in Detroit.

July 16

1779, during the night, the Continental Army surprise attacked a British fortified post at the Hudson River crossing of Stony Point. Over 500 prisoners are captured, resulting in the British losing a brigade of men and control over crossing the Hudson River.

1790, the U.S. Congress declared Washington, D.C. as the nation’s new and permanent capital.

July 17

1918, the RMS Carpathia which helped rescue passengers from the sinking Titanic, was sunk by a German U-boat off the coast of Ireland.

July 18

1870, during the first Vatican Council the dogma of “papal infallibility” was decreed.

July 19

1799, during Napoleon’s Egyptian invasion, a soldier found the black basaltic slab containing inscriptions in three different languages: Greek, Egyptian hieroglyphics and Egyptian demotic. The stone was found near the village of Rosetta. The Greek inscription stated that all three passages were the same but in different languages. The ancient writing was interpreted by French Egyptologist Jean-Francois Champollion in the 1820’s. It is referred to as the “Rosetta Stone.”

1919, the first Cenotaph was unveiled, in honour of the fallen during WWI. British Prime Minister David Lloyd George commissioned a cenotaph be erected at Whitehall. The monument was heavily laden with wreaths at its unveiling, and a permanent cenotaph replaced the hastily built model used for the “Day of Peace” memoriam.

July 21

1918, a German submarine fired at the town of Orleans, Massachusetts, hitting several ships but missing the buildings in town. Shells landed on the beach and in a swampy uninhabited area. This is the only incident of the U.S. mainland being shelled during WWI. Orleans is situated on the eastern hook of Cape Cod.

July 24

1911, Hiram Bingham III re-discovered the lost city of the Incas, Machu Picchu.

July 25

1603, King James VI of Scotland is crowned King of England, known as King James the First, succeeding Queen Elizabeth I. King James authorized the unified translation and printing of the Bible into English, being known as the Authorized King James Bible of 1611.

1866, U.S. Congress passed legislation to provide for a Five-Star General rank, also known as General of the Army. General Ulysses Grant is the first to obtain this rank.

July 26

1788, New York ratified the U.S. Constitution and became the eleventh state.

July 28

1914, following the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the throne of Austria-Hungary a month earlier, the nation declared war on Serbia. Within one month, nations across the European continent drew up battle lines as the first world war commenced.

July 30

1945, the Portland-class cruiser USS Indianapolis was sunk by Japanese sub I-58. It was estimated that 900 sailors survived the attack but were stranded in the water, dying of dehydration and shark attacks. Of the original crew of 1,196, only 321 were alive for rescue when spotted by a patrol plane four days later. It is noted as the last major ship to be torpedoed by the Japanese, having recently delivered components for the atomic bomb and for the greatest loss of life from a single U.S. Navy vessel.

Apollo 15 Lunar Rover and IrwinJuly 31

1971, Astronauts from the Apollo 15 mission made the first ever vehicular ride over the surface of the moon in the Lunar Rover Vehicle. Part of Apollo 15’s mission to the moon was to perform scientific experiments such as dropping a hammer and feather at the same time (both hit the surface at the same time). They also gathered over 170 lbs. of rock samples, including olivine basalt

 Posted by on 07/31/2012 Almanac   Add comments