#TodayInHistory – July 29
July 29 – Some important events on this day.
626 👉🏼 Avaren/Slaves under khagan Bajan begin siege of Constantinople
904 👉🏼 Thessalonica is sacked by Saracen pirates led by renegade Leo of Tripoli
1279 👉🏼 Five emissaries dispatched by Kublai Khan from the Mongol Yuan dynasty are beheaded by Japan.
In 1274 the Mongol Empire under Kublai Khan launched the first of two failed invasions of Japan. Eight years before, Kublai had sent a letter to the Japanese emperor (who in the letter he called the “King of Japan”), threatening the use of force unless Japan submitted.
The Japanese did not respond. So it was that five years later the Mongol empire (specifically the Yuan dynasty in China and Korean soldiers form the tributary state of Goryeo) launched an amphibious attack on Japan. The Mongols were however repulsed in their first invasion, and, upon being forced back to their ships, were sunk by a large typhoon.
Another invasion occurred in 1281. Prior to this Kublai Khan had sent emissaries from the Yuan dynasty to Japan to negotiate but the Japanese had them beheaded. Again the Mongols were defeated by stiff resistance and their retreating ships sunk by a typhoon.
The invasions were important moments in both countries, being a defining battle in the history of Japan and setting a limit on Mongol expansion which until then had been unabated.
1588 👉🏼 The Battle of Gravelines – Spanish Armada damaged and scattered by the English fleet
1609 👉🏼 Samuel de Champlain shoots and kills two Iroquois chiefs at Ticonderoga, New York setting the stage for French-Iroquois conflicts for the next 150 years
1715 👉🏼 10 Spanish treasure galleons sunk off Florida coast by a hurricane
1783 👉🏼 Skaptar Volcano on Iceland erupts killing about 9,00
1835 👉🏼 1st sugar plantation in Hawaii begins
1836 👉🏼 Inauguration of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris.
1848 👉🏼 Irish Potato Famine: Tipperary Revolt – an unsuccessful nationalist revolt against British rule put down by police
1905 👉🏼 US Secretary of War William Howard Taft makes secret agreement with Japanese Prime Minister Katsura agreeing to Japanese free rein in Korea in return for non-interference with the US in the Philippines
1907 👉🏼 1st helicopter ascent in Douai, France
1914 👉🏼 1st transcontinental phone link made between New York City and San Francisco
1921 👉🏼 Adolf Hitler becomes leader of the National Socialist German Workers Party
1928 👉🏼 Test footage first created for Walt Disney’s “Steamboat Willie” with Mickey Mouse
1949 👉🏼 Moscow ends the blockade of West Berlin
1958 👉🏼 NASA created.
The U.S. Congress passes legislation establishing the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), a civilian agency responsible for coordinating America’s activities in space, on this day. NASA has since sponsored space expeditions, both human and mechanical, that have yielded vital information about the solar system and universe. It has also launched numerous earth-orbiting satellites that have been instrumental in everything from weather forecasting to navigation to global communications.
1967 👉🏼 The Doors score their first #1 hit with “Light My Fire”
1973 👉🏼Led Zeppelin have more than $200,000 in cash stolen from a safety-deposit box at the New York Hilton
2015 👉🏼 Zion Harvey became the first paediatric patient to receive a double hand transplant at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
2015 👉🏼 Part of missing airline MH370 is found on the island of Reunion.
The disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 on 8 March 2014, with 239 people on board, remains one of the most enduring and fascinating mysteries in aviation history. The aircraft disappeared over the South China Sea, some 38 minutes after takeoff. Investigators were able to track pings with a satellite to a general crashing site in the Indian Ocean.
The search for the plane became the most costly in the history of aviation and one of the most complex. It would continue for three years but turned up no sign of the plane, although some debris from the aircraft washed ashore from the Indian Ocean during 2015 and 2016.
Many theories have been proposed for the plane’s disappearance, including many conspiracy theories. These include a hypoxia event, fire, shoot-down, or hijacking and no one conspiracy has achieved any consensus among investigators.
The disappearance was the beginning of a disastrous year for Malaysia Airlines – only four months later another of their aircraft, Flight 17, was shot down over Ukraine with the loss of all on board. They would be nationalized in September 2014 by the Malaysian government following severe financial difficulties.