On this day in history, December 26

Not bad for an old codger. Picture: AFP

Not bad for an old codger. Picture: AFP

Published Dec 26, 2023


Today, back in the day

1652 Jan van Riebeeck writes in his diary that the first two pounds of butter have been churned at the Cape.

1915 The German gunboat, the Kingani, is captured by the British on Lake Tanganyika. It is removed by portage through the jungles of the Belgian Congo.

1924 Judy Garland, aged 2½ and billed as Baby Frances, makes her show-business debut.

1943 The German battleship Scharnhorst sinks off Norway’s North Cape after a battle against the Royal Navy.

1944 US General George Patton’s Third Army breaks the encirclement of surrounded US forces at the Battle of the Bulge.

1948 Cardinal József Mindszenty is arrested in Hungary and accused of treason and conspiracy.

1948 The last Soviet troops are withdrawn from North Korea.

1975 The world’s first commercial supersonic aircraft, the Soviet Tu-144, goes into service.

1991 The Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union meets and formally dissolves the Soviet Union, thus ending the Cold War.

1995 Spinner Paul Adams becomes South Africa’s youngest Test cricketer at 18 years and 340 days of age.

2000 Former Transkei prime minister Chief George Mzivubu Mathanzima dies at Frontier Hospital in Queenstown, aged 82.

2003 An earthquake shakes south-eastern Iran leaves more than 26 000 people dead and 30 000 injured.

2004 An earthquake creates a tsunami causing devastation in Sri Lanka, India, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, the Maldives, killing 230 000 people.

2006 Aged 40 years and 268 days, Teddy Sheringham scores for West Ham United in a 2-1 loss to Portsmouth to become the oldest goalscorer in Premier League history.

Dennis Brutus, activist and former Robben Island prisioner Picture: Nonhlanhla Kambule-Makgati.

2009 Political activist, poet and academic Dennis Brutus, 81, dies in Cape Town.

2015 Floods in Paraguay, Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay displace 150 000 people.

2018 American Colin O’Brady is the first person to cross Antarctica solo and unassisted.