Michael Schumacher, racing driver, is 44 today

Feast day of St Peter Balsam, St Bertilia of Mareuil, St Antherus, pope, and St Genevieve or Genovefa.

1521: Pope Leo X excommunicated Martin Luther.

1777: The Battle of Princeton took place in the Revolutionary War, in which George Washington defeated the British forces, led by Cornwallis.

1892: Author JRR Tolkien, creator of The Lord Of The Rings and The Hobbit, was born in South Africa. He died in Bournemouth in 1973.

1924: English explorer Howard Carter discovered the sarcophagus of Tutankhamun in Egypt’s Valley of Kings.

1946: Nazi propagandist William Joyce – the notorious Lord Haw-Haw – was hanged for treason.

1959: Alaska became the 49th state of America.

1961: The millionth Morris Minor, the highly successful British car designed by Sir Alec Issigonis, came off the assembly line at Oxford.

1993: US President George Bush and Russian President Boris Yeltsin signed the second Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) in Moscow.

1997: The death toll in Europe’s big freeze hit 220 as temperatures plunged to -10C from Britain to central Russia.

2009: Matt Smith was named as the new Doctor Who. He became the 11th Time Lord since the programme started in 1963.

On This Day Last Year

Stephen Lawrence’s parents expressed joy and relief as two men were convicted of his murder nearly 19 years after he was stabbed to death. Gary Dobson, 36, and David Norris, 35, were both found guilty of murder by a jury at the Old Bailey. Mr Lawrence died in a racist attack by a gang of white youths in Eltham, south east London in April 1993. Standing outside the Old Bailey with her surviving son Stuart, Doreen Lawrence said her relief at the verdict was mixed with anger that it had taken the police so long to get a prosecution.

Birthdays

Sir George Martin, record producer, 87; Robert Loggia, actor/director, 83; Stephen Stills, rock singer, 68; John Paul Jones, rock musician (Led Zeppelin), 67; Mel Gibson, actor, 57; Gavin Hastings, rugby great, 51; Michael Schumacher, racing driver, 44.



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