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This Day In History

This Day In History - October 17

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October 17 is the 290th day of the year (291st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 75 days remaining until the end of the year.

Events

539 BC – Cyrus the Great marches into the city of Babylon, releasing the Jews from almost 70 years of exile. Cyrus allows the Jews to return to Yehud Medinata and rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem.
456 – Battle of Placentia: Ricimer, supported by Majorian (comes domesticorum), defeats the Roman usurper Avitus near Piacenza (Northern Italy) .
1091 – London Tornado of 1091: A tornado thought to be of strength T8/F4 strikes the heart of London.
1346 – Battle of Neville’s Cross: King David II of Scotland is captured by Edward III of England near Durham, and imprisoned in the Tower of London for eleven years.
1448 – Second Battle of Kosovo, where the mainly Hungarian army led by John Hunyadi is defeated by an Ottoman army led by Sultan Murad II.
1456 – The University of Greifswald is established, making it the second oldest university in northern Europe (also for a period the oldest in Sweden, and Prussia).
1558 – Poczta Polska, the Polish postal service, is founded.
1604 – Kepler’s Star: German astronomer Johannes Kepler observes a supernova in the constellation Ophiuchus.
1610 – French king Louis XIII is crowned in Rheims.
1660 – Nine regicides, the men who signed the death warrant of Charles I, are hanged, drawn and quartered.
1662 – Charles II of England sells Dunkirk to France for 40,000 pounds.
1771 – Premiere in Milan of the opera Ascanio in Alba, composed by Wolfgang Mozart, age 15.
1777 – American Revolutionary War: British General John Burgoyne surrenders his army at Saratoga, New York.
1781 – American Revolutionary War: British General Lord Charles Cornwallis surrenders at the Siege of Yorktown.
1800 – Britain takes control of the Dutch colony of Curaçao.
1806 – Former leader of the Haitian Revolution, Emperor Jacques I of Haiti is assassinated after an oppressive rule.
1814 – London Beer Flood occurs in London, killing nine.
1860 – First The Open Championship (referred to in North America as the British Open).
1861 – 19 people are killed in the Cullin-La-Ringo massacre, the deadliest massacre of Europeans by aborigines in Australian history.
1888 – Thomas Edison files a patent for the Optical Phonograph (the first movie).
1905 – The October Manifesto issued by Tsar Nicholas II of Russia
1907 – Guglielmo Marconi’s company begins the first commercial transatlantic wireless service between Glace Bay, Nova Scotia, Canada and Clifden, Ireland.
1912 – Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia declare war on the Ottoman Empire, joining Montenegro in the First Balkan War.
1917 – First British bombing of Germany in World War I.
1919 – RCA is incorporated as the Radio Corporation of America.
1931 – Al Capone convicted of income tax evasion.
1933 – Albert Einstein flees Nazi Germany and moves to the United States.
1941 – For the first time in World War II, a German submarine attacks an American ship.
1941 – German troops execute the male population of the villages Kerdyllia in Serres, Greece.
1943 – Burma Railway (Burma-Thailand Railway) is completed.
1943 – The Holocaust: Sobibor extermination camp is closed.
1945 – A massive number of people, headed by CGT, gather in the Plaza de Mayo in Argentina to demand Juan Peron’s release. It calls “el día de la lealtad peronista” (peronista loyalty day)
1945 – Archbishop Damaskinos of Athens becomes Prime Minister of Greece between the pull-out of the German occupation force in 1944 and the return of King Georgios II to Greece.
1956 – The first commercial nuclear power station is officially opened by Queen Elizabeth II in Sellafield,in Cumbria, England.
1956 – Donald Byrne and Bobby Fischer play a famous chess game called The Game of the Century. Fischer beat Byrne and wins a Brilliancy prize.
1961 – Scores of Algerian protesters (some claim up to 400) are massacred by the Paris police at the instigation of former Nazi collaborator Maurice Papon, then chief of the Prefecture of Police.
1964 – Prime Minister of Australia Robert Menzies opens the artificial Lake Burley Griffin in the middle of the capital Canberra.
1965 – The 1964-1965 New York World’s Fair closes after a two year run. More than 51 million people had attended the two-year event.
1966 – A fire at a building in New York City kills 12 firefighters, the fire department’s deadliest day until the September 11, 2001 attacks.
1966 – Botswana and Lesotho join the United Nations.
1970 – Montreal, Quebec: Quebec Vice-Premier and Minister of Labour Pierre Laporte murdered by members of the FLQ terrorist group.
1973 – OPEC starts an oil embargo against a number of western countries, considered to have helped Israel in its war against Syria.
1977 – German Autumn: Four days after it is hijacked, Lufthansa Flight 181 lands in Mogadishu, Somalia, where a team of German GSG 9 commandos later rescues all remaining hostages on board.
1979 – Mother Teresa awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
1979 – The Department of Education Organization Act is signed into law creating the US Department of Education and US Department of Health and Human Services.
1980 – As part of the Holy See – United Kingdom relations a British monarch makes the first state visit to the Vatican
1989 – 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake (7.1 on the Richter scale) hits the San Francisco Bay Area and causes 57 deaths directly (and 6 indirectly).
1992 – Having gone to the wrong house for a Halloween party, Japanese exchange student Yoshihiro Hattori is shot and killed by the homeowner in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
1994 – Russian journalist Dmitry Kholodov is assassinated while investigating corruption in the armed forces.
2000 – Train crash at Hatfield, north of London, leading to collapse of Railtrack.
2001 – Israeli tourism minister Rehavam Ze’evi became the first Israeli minister to be assassinated in a terrorist attack.
2003 – The pinnacle is fitted on the roof of Taipei 101, a 101-floor skyscraper in Taipei, allowing it to surpass the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur by 56 metres (184 ft) and become the world’s tallest highrise.
Births

1253 – Ivo of Kermartin, French priest and saint (d. 1303)
1577 – Cristofano Allori, Italian painter (d. 1621)
1577 – Dmitry Pozharsky, Russian prince (d. 1642)
1582 – Johann Gerhard, German theologian (d. 1637)
1623 – Francis Turretin, Swiss theologian (d. 1687)
1688 – Domenico Zipoli, Italian composer (d. 1726)
1711 – Jupiter Hammon, American poet (d. 1806)
1719 – Jacques Cazotte, French author (d. 1792)
1720 – Maria Teresa Agnesi Pinottini, Italian composer (d. 1795)
1725 – John Wilkes, English radical, journalist, and politician. (d. 1797)
1729 – Pierre-Alexandre Monsigny, French composer (d. 1817)
1760 – Claude Henri de Rouvroy, comte de Saint-Simon, French economist and philosopher (d. 1825)
1811 – Albertus van Raalte, Dutch-American pastor (d. 1876)
1813 – Georg Büchner, German playwright (d. 1837)
1814 – Yakiv Holovatsky, Ukrainian historian, scholar, and poet (d. 1888)
1817 – Syed Ahmad Khan, Indian educator and politician (d. 1898)
1853 – Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna of Russia (d. 1920)
1864 – Elinor Glyn, English author and scriptwriter (d. 1943)
1865 – James Rudolph Garfield, American lawyer and politician (d. 1950)
1883 – Thaddeus Shideler, American hurdler (d. 1966)
1886 – Spring Byington, American actress (d. 1971)
1890 – Roy Kilner, English cricketer (d. 1928)
1892 – Theodor Eicke, German SS general (d. 1943)
1892 – Herbert Howells, English composer (d. 1983)
1898 – Shinichi Suzuki, Japanese violinist and educator (d. 1998)
1898 – Simon Vestdijk, Dutch author and poet (d. 1971)
1900 – Jean Arthur, American actress (d. 1991)
1902 – Irene Ryan, American actress (d. 1973)
1903 – Nathanael West, American author and screenwriter (d. 1940)
1906 – Paul Derringer, American baseball player (d. 1987)
1908 – Red Rolfe, American baseball player (d. 1969)
1909 – Cozy Cole, American drummer (d. 1981)
1910 – Ester Wier, American author (d. 2000)
1912 – Pope John Paul I (d. 1978)
1912 – Theodore Marier, American composer and educator, founder of the Boston Archdiocesan Choir School (d. 2001)
1912 – Jack Owens, American singer-songwriter and pianist (d. 1982)
1914 – Jerry Siegel, American writer and illustrator (d. 1996)
1915 – Arthur Miller, American playwright (d. 2005)
1917 – Sumner Locke Elliott, Australian-American author (d. 1991)
1917 – Marsha Hunt, American actress
1918 – Rita Hayworth, American actress and dancer (d. 1987)
1918 – Ralph Wilson, American businessman
1919 – Isaak Markovich Khalatnikov, Russian physicist
1920 – Montgomery Clift, American actor (d. 1966)
1920 – Miguel Delibes, Spanish author (d. 2010)
1921 – George Mackay Brown, Scottish Poet (d. 1996)
1921 – Priscilla Buckley, American author (d. 2012)
1921 – Maria Gorokhovskaya, Soviet gymnast (d. 2001)
1921 – Tom Poston, American actor and comedian (d. 2007)
1922 – Luiz Bonfá, Brazilian composer (d. 2001)
1922 – Pierre Juneau, Canadian broadcaster and politician, co-founded the Montreal World Film Festival (d. 2012)
1923 – Barney Kessel, American guitarist and composer (d. 2004)
1923 – Charles McClendon, American football player and coach (d. 2001)
1924 – Don Coryell, American football coach (d. 2010)
1924 – Anton Geiser, Yugoslav SS officer (d. 2012)
1925 – Harry Carpenter, English sportscaster (d. 2010)
1926 – Julie Adams, American actress
1926 – Beverly Garland, American actress (d. 2008)
1929 – Mario Wilson, Portuguese footballer and coach
1930 – Robert Atkins, American physician and cardiologist, created the Atkins diet (d. 2003)
1930 – Jimmy Breslin, American journalist and author
1931 – Ernst Hinterberger, Austrian author (d. 2012)
1933 – William Anders, American general and astronaut
1933 – Jeanine Deckers, Belgian nun and singer (d. 1985)
1934 – Johnny Haynes, English footballer (d. 2005)
1934 – Rico Rodriguez, American trombonist
1935 – Sydney Chapman, English politician and architect
1936 – Sathima Bea Benjamin, South African singer-songwriter
1936 – Hiroo Kanamori, Japanese seismologist
1937 – Paxton Whitehead, English actor
1938 – Evel Knievel, American motorcycle stuntman (d. 2007)
1938 – Les Murray, Australian poet
1940 – Stephen Kovacevich, American pianist and conductor
1940 – Jim Smith, English footballer and manager
1940 – Peter Stringfellow, English nightclub owner
1941 – Earl Thomas Conley, American singer-songwriter and guitarist
1942 – Steve Jones, American basketball player
1942 – Gary Puckett, American singer-songwriter (Gary Puckett & The Union Gap)
1946 – Ronni Chasen, American publicist (d. 2010)
1946 – Michael Hossack, American drummer (The Doobie Brothers) (d. 2012)
1946 – Cameron Mackintosh, English theater producer
1946 – Adam Michnik, Polish historian
1946 – Drusilla Modjeska, English author
1946 – Bob Seagren, American pole vaulter
1947 – Simi Garewal, Indian actress
1947 – Gene Green, American politician
1947 – Michael McKean, American actor
1948 – Robert Jordan, American author (d. 2007)
1948 – Margot Kidder, Canadian actress
1948 – George Wendt, American actor
1949 – Owen Arthur, Barbadian politician
1950 – Philippe Barbarin, French cardinal
1950 – Howard Rollins, American actor (d. 1996)
1951 – Annie Borckink, Dutch speed skater
1951 – Roger Pontare, Swedish singer
1951 – Shari Ulrich, Canadian singer-songwriter (Hometown Band, The Pied Pumkin, and UHF)
1953 – Joseph Bowie, American trombonist (Defunkt)
1954 – Carlos Buhler, American mountaineer
1955 – George Alogoskoufis, Greek economist and politician
1956 – Mae Jemison, American physician and astronaut
1956 – Pat McCrory, American politician
1957 – Lawrence Bender, American film producer
1957 – Steve McMichael, American football player
1957 – Vincent Van Patten, American actor
1958 – Alan Jackson, American singer-songwriter
1959 – Ron Drummond, American author and scholar
1959 – Russell Gilbert, Australian comedian and actor
1959 – Mark Peel, Australian historian and academic
1959 – Richard Roeper, American columnist and critic
1960 – Guy Henry, English actor
1960 – Rob Marshall, American director
1960 – Bernie Nolan, Irish singer and actress (The Nolans) (d. 2013)
1962 – Mike Judge, American animator, director, screenwriter, producer and actor
1963 – Sergio Goycochea, Argentine footballer
1963 – Norm Macdonald, Canadian comedian and actor
1964 – Dhondup Wangchen, Chinese director and producer
1965 – Aravinda de Silva, Sri Lankan cricketer
1966 – Danny Ferry, American basketball player
1966 – Mark Gatiss, English actor, screenwriter, and author
1966 – Tommy Kendall, American race car driver
1967 – Kim Seung-jun, South Korean voice actor
1967 – René Dif, Danish singer and actor (Aqua)
1968 – Ziggy Marley, Jamaican singer-songwriter, guitarist, and voice actor (Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers)
1968 – David Robertson, Scottish footballer
1969 – Ernie Els, South African golfer
1969 – Wyclef Jean, Haitian-born American rapper, songwriter, producer, and actor (Fugees)
1969 – Wood Harris, American actor
1969 – Rick Mercer, Canadian comedian
1970 – Anil Kumble, Indian cricketer
1970 – John Mabry, American baseball player
1970 – Shauna O’Brien, American model and actress
1970 – Blues Saraceno, American guitarist, composer, and producer (Poison)
1971 – Chris Kirkpatrick, American singer, dancer, and voice actor (‘N Sync)
1971 – Kim Ljung, Norwegian singer-songwriter and bass player (Seigmen and Zeromancer)
1972 – Eminem, American rapper, producer, and actor (D12, Outsidaz, and Bad Meets Evil)
1972 – Tarkan, German-Turkish singer-songwriter and producer
1972 – Sharon Leal, American actress
1972 – Joe McEwing, American baseball player
1972 – Musashi, Japanese martial artist
1973 – Andrea Tarozzi, Italian footballer
1974 – Ariel Levy, American author
1974 – Matthew Macfadyen, English actor
1974 – Janne Puurtinen, Finnish keyboard player (HIM)
1974 – John Rocker, American baseball player
1975 – Janne Aikala, Finnish murder victim (d. 1986)
1975 – Francis Bouillon, American ice hockey player
1975 – Vina Morales, Filipino singer,dancer,host,actress, and entrepreneur
1976 – Sebastián Abreu, Uruguayan footballer
1976 – Rena Inoue, Japan-born American figure skater
1977 – Dudu Aouate, Israeli footballer
1977 – Alimi Ballard, American actor
1977 – Bryan Bertino, American director and screenwriter
1977 – André Villas-Boas, Portuguese football manager
1978 – Jerry Flannery, Irish rugby player
1978 – Erin Karpluk, Canadian actress
1979 – Marcela Bovio, Mexican singer-songwriter and violinist (Stream of Passion and Elfonía)
1979 – Alexandros Nikolaidis, Greek martial artist
1979 – Kimi Räikkönen, Finnish race car driver
1979 – Kostas Tsartsaris, Greek basketball player
1980 – Yekaterina Gamova, Russian volleyball player
1980 – Mohammad Hafeez, Pakistani cricketer
1980 – Alessandro Piccolo, Italian race car driver
1981 – Tsubasa Imai, Japanese singer, actor, and dancer (Johnny & Associates and Tackey & Tsubasa)
1982 – Nick Riewoldt, Australian rules footballer
1983 – Daniel Booko, American actor
1983 – Milica Brozovic, Yugoslav-born Russian figure skater
1983 – Felicity Jones, British actress
1983 – Toshihiro Matsushita, Japanese footballer
1983 – Junichi Miyashita, Japanese swimmer
1983 – Ivan Saenko, Russian footballer
1983 – Mitch Talbot, American baseball player
1983 – Vitali Teleš, Estonian footballer
1984 – Jelle Klaasen, Dutch darts player
1984 – Chris Lowell, American actor
1984 – Randall Munroe, American cartoonist
1985 – Carlos González, Venezuelan baseball player
1985 – Max Irons, English actor
1985 – Collins John, Dutch footballer
1985 – Baran Kosari, Iranian actress
1985 – Tomokazu Nagira, Japanese footballer
1986 – Aija Brumermane, Latvian basketball player
1986 – Yannick Ponsero, French figure skater
1987 – Bea Alonzo, Filipino actress
1987 – Mihir Desai, American legal scholar and philosopher
1987 – Jarosław Fojut, Polish footballer
1987 – Hideto Takahashi, Japanese footballer
1988 – Christina Crawford, American wrestler and dancer
1988 – Tori Matsuzaka, Japanese actor
1988 – Yuko Oshima, Japanese actress and singer (AKB48 and Not Yet)
1990 – Bianca Bree, Belgian-American actress
1990 – Paolo Campinoti, Italian footballer
1990 – Saki Kumagai, Japanese footballer
1990 – Patrick Lambie, South African rugby player
1990 – Arisa Murata, Japanese freestyle skier
1992 – Sam Concepcion, Filipino singer, dancer, and actor
1992 – Nanami Sakuraba, Japanese gravure idol, actress and singer
Deaths

33 – Agrippina the Elder, Roman wife of Germanicus (b. 14 BC)
532 – Pope Boniface II
1174 – Petronilla of Aragon (b. 1135)
1575 – Gaspar Cervantes de Gaeta, Spanish cardinal (b. 1511)
1586 – Philip Sidney, English courtier and soldier (b. 1554)
1587 – Francesco I de’ Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany (b. 1541)
1616 – John Pitts, English scholar (b. 1560)
1660 – Adrian Scrope, English military officer (b. 1601)
1673 – Thomas Clifford, 1st Baron Clifford of Chudleigh, English politician (b. 1630)
1757 – René Antoine Ferchault de Réaumur, French scientist (b. 1683)
1776 – Pierre François le Courayer, French theologian (b. 1681)
1780 – William Cookworthy, English chemist (b. 1705)
1786 – Johann Ludwig Aberli, Swiss painter (b. 1723)
1806 – Jean-Jacques Dessalines, Haitian military leader and politician, Governor-General of Haiti (b. 1758)
1836 – Orest Kiprensky, Russian painter (b. 1782)
1837 – Johann Nepomuk Hummel, Austrian pianist and composer (b. 1778)
1849 – Frédéric Chopin, Polish pianist and composer (b. 1810)
1868 – Laura Secord, Canadian war heroine (b. 1775)
1887 – Gustav Kirchhoff, German physicist (b. 1824)
1889 – Nikolai Chernyshevsky, Russian philosopher (b. 1828)
1893 – Patrice de Mac-Mahon, Duke of Magenta, French general and politician, President of France (b. 1808)
1910 – Julia Ward Howe, American poet and abolitionist (b. 1819)
1928 – Frank Dicksee, English painter and illustrator (b. 1853)
1931 – Alfons Maria Jakob, German neurologist (b. 1884)
1934 – Santiago Ramón y Cajal, Spanish histologist and neuroscientist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1852)
1937 – J. Bruce Ismay, English businessman, survivor of the Sinking of the RMS Titanic (b. 1862)
1938 – Karl Kautsky, Czech-German theoretician (b. 1854)
1943 – Stefan Starzyński, Polish economist and politician (b. 1893)
1956 – Anne Crawford, Israeli-English actress (b. 1920)
1958 – Paul Outerbridge, American photographer (b. 1896)
1958 – Charlie Townsend, English cricketer (b. 1876)
1962 – Natalia Goncharova, Russian painter (b. 1882)
1963 – Jacques Hadamard, French mathematician (b. 1865)
1965 – Bart King, Filipino cricketer (b. 1873)
1966 – Sidney Hatch, American runner (b. 1883)
1966 – Wieland Wagner, German director (b. 1917)
1967 – Puyi, Chinese emperor of China (b. 1906)
1970 – Pierre Laporte, Canadian lawyer, journalist, and politician (b. 1921)
1970 – Vola Vale, American actress (b. 1897)
1970 – Quincy Wright, American political scientist (b. 1890)
1972 – Turk Broda, Canadian ice hockey player (b. 1914)
1972 – George, Crown Prince of Serbia (b. 1887)
1972 – Billy Williams, American singer (The Charioteers) (b. 1910)
1973 – Ingeborg Bachmann, Austrian author and poet (b. 1926)
1978 – Giovanni Gronchi, Italian politician, 3rd President of the Italian Republic (b. 1887)
1979 – S. J. Perelman, American author and screenwriter (b. 1904)
1979 – John Stuart, Scottish actor (b. 1898)
1981 – Albert Cohen, Swiss author (b. 1895)
1981 – Lina Tsaldari, Greek politician (b. 1887)
1983 – Raymond Aron, French philosopher (b. 1905)
1987 – Abdul Malek Ukil, Bangladeshi lawyer and politician (b. 1925)
1991 – Tennessee Ernie Ford, American singer and actor (b. 1919)
1992 – Herman Johannes, Indonesian professor, scientist and politician (b. 1912)
1992 – Orestis Laskos, Greek actor, director, and screenwriter (b. 1908)
1993 – Criss Oliva, American guitarist and songwriter (Savatage) (b. 1963)
1996 – Chris Acland, English drummer (Lush) (b. 1966)
1997 – Larry Jennings, American magician (b. 1933)
1998 – Joan Hickson, English actress (b. 1906)
1998 – Hakim Said, Pakistani scholar and politician, 20th Governor of Sindh (b. 1920)
1999 – Nicholas Metropolis, Greek-American mathematician and physicist (b. 1915)
2000 – Leo Nomellini, Italian-American football player and wrestler (b. 1924)
2000 – Joachim Nielsen, Norwegian singer-songwriter and poet (b. 1964)
2001 – Jay Livingston, American composer and songwriter (b. 1915)
2001 – Micheline Ostermeyer, French athlete and pianist (b. 1922)
2001 – Rehavam Ze’evi, Israeli general and politician (b. 1926)
2002 – Derek Bell, Irish pianist and songwriter (The Chieftains) (b. 1935)
2002 – Aileen Riggin, American swimmer (b. 1906)
2004 – Uzi Hitman, Israeli singer-songwriter (b. 1952)
2005 – Ba Jin, Chinese author (b. 1904)
2006 – Daniel Emilfork, French actor (b. 1924)
2006 – Christopher Glenn, American journalist (b. 1938)
2007 – Joey Bishop, American actor (b. 1918)
2007 – Teresa Brewer, American singer (b. 1931)
2007 – Suzy Covey, American scholar (b. 1939)
2008 – Levi Stubbs, American singer and actor (Four Tops) (b. 1936)
2008 – Ben Weider, Canadian businessman, co-founded the International Federation of BodyBuilding & Fitness (b. 1923)
2009 – Norma Fox Mazer, American children’s author (b. 1931)
2009 – Vic Mizzy, American composer (b. 1916)
2011 – Carl Lindner, Jr., American businessman (b. 1919)
2012 – Émile Allais, French skier (b. 1912)
2012 – Frank Moore Cross, American scholar and academic (b. 1921)
2012 – Bandya Kakade, Indian footballer (b. 1945)
2012 – Stanford R. Ovshinsky, American scientist and businessman, co-founded Energy Conversion Devices (b. 1922)
2012 – Kōji Wakamatsu, Japanese director and screenwriter (b. 1936)

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