#TodayInHistory – January 112 min read
January 11 – Some important events on this day
1569 👉🏼 1st recorded lottery in England is drawn in St Paul’s Cathedral
1599 👉🏼 Jacob van Neck’s fleet leaves Bantam, Java in modern day Indonesia with 1 million pounds of pepper and cloves and a further half a ship full of nutmeg, mace and cinnamon
1693 👉🏼 Most powerful earthquake in Italian recorded history strikes Sicily and Southern Italy with an estimated magnitude of 7.4. Tsunamis followed and devastated coastal villages on the Ionian Sea and the Straits of Messina.
1838 👉🏼 First public demonstration of telegraph messages sent using dots and dashes at Speedwell Ironworks in Morristown, New Jersey by Samuel Morse and Alfred Vail
1879 👉🏼 Anglo-Zulu War begins as British Lt-General Chelmsford invades Zululand in South Africa.
In 1867 the British Empire successfully managed to impart a federation-style political system on its Canadian territory, and it believed a similar setup might work well in its African colonies. To that end, the British High Commissioner, Sir Henry Bartle Frere, was sent to begin preparations for this act.
On December 11, 1878 he issued an ultimatum to the Zulu Kingdom to submit or face war. They refused and Britain declared war on 11 January, suffering a heavy loss in the opening battle of the war at Isandlwana. The war was notable for several battles, including the defense of an area known as Rorke’s Drift when a small force of around 140 British Army soldiers defended their post against 3,000-4,000 Zulu combatants. This was dramatized in the 1964 film Zulu.
Eventually the British defeated the Zulu and annexed their territory. The last head of the French royal House of Bonaparte, Napoléon, was also killed in the war, shocking Europe who saw him as the last hope to restore the Bonaparte dynasty on the throne.
1922 👉🏼 Insulin first used on humans to treat diabetes, on Canadian Leonard Thompson, aged 14
1949 👉🏼 Snowfall 1st recorded in Los Angeles
1962 👉🏼 Volcano Huascaran in Peru erupts killing 4,000
1964 👉🏼 First government report by US Surgeon General Luther Terry warning that smoking may be hazardous
2007 👉🏼 Author J. K. Rowling finishes the 7th and last Harry Potter novel in room 552 of the Balmoral Hotel, Edinburgh
2020 👉🏼 Diego the giant 100 year old tortoise retires to the Galapagos islands after his high libido is credited with saving his species