The Indy 500 was founded On This Day in 1911.
On this day in 1911, one of the world’s most recognisable motor-sport events first took place.
The Indianapolis 500 has since become a staple of the American IndyCar calendar and usually still happens around its anniversary date, each year.
The very first race was won by, in a car that averaged roughly 75 mph. Nowadays, competitors race at an average of over 170 mph.
Unsurprisingly, the fastest Indy 500 ever was completed in 2013 by Brazilian Tony Kanaan in 2hrs 40mins 3secs. The fastest in-race lap belongs to American, Eddie Cheever at 38.119secs.
Other historical events throughout history On This Day include:
- One of the world’s most famous baseball players, Babe Ruth, retires (1935)
- The Lincoln Memorial is officially dedicated in Washington D.C. (1922).
- The Auckland Harbour Bridge is officially opened in New Zealand, providing a crossing over the Waitemata Harbour (1959).
On this day in 1985, 39 people lost their lives in what would become known as the ‘Heysel Stadium Disaster’.
Heysel Stadium, in Brussels, Belgium, was the location for the European Cup Winners Cup Final between defending champions, Liverpool and challengers, Italian side, Juventus.
An hour before kick-off, a surge of Liverpool fans breeched a security gate surrounding the ‘neutral area’ of the ground. Having backed off, they ran into a brick wall, which eventually collapses crushing those who couldn’t escape – over 600 were injured alongside those who lost their lives.
Remarkably, the decision to let the game go ahead was made, with further rioting feared, had the game been called off.
Juventus would eventually lift the cup following a 1-0 victory.
After the event, and subsequent inquiry, a European competitions ban was passed down to all English football clubs for five years (with Liverpool handed a six-year ban).
Our thoughts go out to the families of those affected on this day 29 years ago.
Other events throughout history On This Day:
- Peter II becomes the czar of Russia. (1727)
- Bing Crosby records ‘White Christmas’ – the best selling Christmas single in history. (1942)
- Bobby Charlton scores twice to help Manchester United become the first English winners of the European Cup. (1968)
Bonnie and Clyde
On this day in 1934, notorious American outlaws ‘Bonnie and Clyde’ were killed in a police ambush.
Bonnie Elizabeth Parker and Clyde Chestnut Barrow robbed a series of banks throughout the late 1920s and early 1930s throughout middle America. Despite their high-profile bank robberies, the pair and their gang mostly robbed smaller stores and gas stations, but the big scores were what made them infamous.
On the day of May 23rd, 1934 the pair were spotted by six policeman, in broad daylight, stood beside their car. They were shot dead by the assembled coalition of Texan and Louisianan patrol officers in Bienville Parish, Louisianna.
Other historical events On This Day include:
- Whipsnade Zoo opens. (1931)
- Manchester United win the FA Cup following a () victory in the final over Newcastle United. (1999)
- A Staffordshire man places a 30p bet with odds of 1,666,666/1, predicting 15 league winners from football, rugby and cricket. He won £500,000. (2001)
- BBC staff and journalists stage a 24 hour protest strike over plans to cut 3,700 jobs. The strike severely affected that day’s output. (2005).
RIP Lee Rigby (1988 – 2013)
On this day in 2013, Lee Rigby was brutally murdered in the streets of Woolwich in south-east London.
It is believed Rigby was attacked completely at random and only because he was wearing a ‘Help for Heroes’ hoody at the time.
25-year-old Rigby had previous served in the 2nd Battalion of Royal Regiment of Fusiliers in Cyprus, Afghanistan and Germany.
His murderers, Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale, committed the act in broad daylight outside a local primary school. They were approached by members of the public, at the time, who pleaded with them to stop and recorded their actions on mobile phones.
Armed police appeared on the scene less than fifteen minutes after the emergency call was received, where upon the attackers charged with their weapons; a gun and a meat cleaver. The Police wounded both men with shots and took them into custody.
Both Adebolajo and Adebowale were unrepentant during their trial and, following an unsuccessful appeal, were both sentenced to life imprisonment, with the former given a whole life order and the latter told he must serve at least 45 years.
Other events throughout history On This Day include:
- The Wright Brothers’ first patent for a ‘flying machine’ was approved. (1906)
- An earthquake measuring 8.6 on the Richter Scale hit Xining, China. (1927)
- The Beatles’ ‘Ticket to Ride’ hits Number One. (1965).
- Peter Sutcliffe, otherwise known as The Yorkshire Ripper, was sentenced to life imprisonment at The Old Bailey following six years of evading Police. (1981)
Family Radio President, Harold Camping predicted the world would end in 2011.
Three years on and we’re still here….
On this day in 2011, the world was supposed to end according to the words of Harold Camping, noted Christian broadcaster in the US.
Camping’s predictions originally aired on ‘Family Radio’ a station which Camping was President of, based in California, but spread across 150 radio markets in the US.
Camping referenced Jeremiah 25:32 when he suggested the world was going to ‘end’ on May 21st, 2011. The idea being God’s rapture would begin that day, with the ‘physical annihilation’ of the Earth and the remaining people happening exactly 5 months later, on October 21st, 2011.
Evidently, Camping’s prediction turned out to be fictitious, despite re-working his prediction on May 23rd to suggest the ‘true date’ was 21st October.
Unfortunately, Camping suffered a stroke shortly after 21st October, but continued broadcasting up until shortly before his death in December 2013.
Other historical events on this day include:
- The Manchester Ship Canal was officially opened by Queen Victoria. (1894)
- The body of Bobby Franks was found, having been kidnapped and murdered by ‘Leopold & Loeb’, two well-to-do Havardians who were trying to commit the ‘perfect crime’. (1924)
- Charles Lindbergh touched down in Paris following the world’s first solo non-stop flight across the Atlantic Ocean. (1927)
- The Republic of Montenegro votes on independence from Serbia, with the public voting by a majority of 55%. (2006)
The Plaintiffs in the seminal ‘Romer Vs. Evans’ case. (1996)
On this day in 1996, a team of complainants won a case which potentially shaped the LGBT landscape from then on.
The Supreme Court ruled that a 1992 Amendment to Colorado’s state constitution (approved with a ratio of 53%:47%) that denied homosexuals or transgenders to any form of ‘minority rights’, the defence at the time suggested ‘affirmative action’ to be a concern.
The Court ruled that the amendment should be stricken from the books. The ruling was passed with a 6-3 majority saying:
“[The Amendment’s] sheer breadth is so discontinuous with the reasons offered for it that the amendment seems inexplicable by anything but animus toward the class that it affects; it lacks a rational relationship to legitimate state interests.”
Were this not the case, ‘hate-crimes’ against those of the LGBT community would have, effectively, been legal.
Other events throughout history on this day include:
- 1st hydrogen bomb was dropped by the US over Bikini Atoll in the Pacific Ocean. (1956)
- The Battle of Hamburger Hill, part of the Vietnam War, ended. (1969)
- South Korea successfully develops stem-cells that match human cells. (2005)
- Founding Bee Gee, Robyn Gibb, passes away. (2012)
The original McDonald’s restaurant.
Were it not for May 15, 1940 the landscape of the civilised world would be considerably different…waistlines, at the very least.
Today marks the 74th birthday of the very first McDonald’s restaurant opening in San Bernardino, California. Richard and Maurice McDonald could possibly never have envisaged that their quaint beginnings as a BBQ restaurant would become the hamburger monolith it has.
In 1955, the McDonald brothers sold their, still relatively small, list of franchised stores to Ray Kroc, who was one of their original franchisees.
Nowadays, McDonald’s reports that they serve over 68 million customers a day in over 119 different countries. They were believed to be worth over $35.39 billion, with over 1.8 million employees, as of 2012.
Important burger-facts throughout history…?
We’re loving it.
Also throughout history on this day:
- Paraguay declares independence from Spain. (1811)
- The Royal Opera House in Covent Garden, London opens. (1858)
- Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton form the ‘National Woman Sufferage Association’. (1896)
- Jessica Watson becomes the youngest girl to sail around the world, unassisted, at the age of 16. (2010)