Some of the more interesting things that happened on this day.
1802 Frans Bresler, landdros of Graaff-Reinet, confers with Lieutenant-Governor Francis Dundas in Algoa Bay about withdrawing British troops from the Cape’s eastern frontier.
1888 Fire breaks on the mail ship Pembroke Castle in Cape Town harbour kills 10 people.
1901 The youngest Boer commandant, Piet van der Merwe, 19, and 23 burgers are killed at Driefontein, in the Cape Colony.
1914 Parliament decides that South Africa will enter World War I alongside England.
1942 The South African Army, Navy and Air Force are involved in invading Madagascar to deny Axis powers access to deep-water ports.
1943 Hitler’s troops occupy Rome and take over the protection of Vatican City.
1944 While planning the capture of the bridge at Arnhem, as part of Operation Market Garden during the liberation of Europe, British Lieutenant-General Frederick Browning memorably says to his boss, Field-Marshal Bernard Montgomery: ‘But, sir, I think we might be going a bridge too far’, giving rise to the expression, ‘a bridge too far’.
1945 Mike the Headless Chicken is decapitated in Fruita, Colorado; incredibly he survives for 18 months before choking to death, but becomes something of a celebrity.
1948 Pretoria takes in 83 German war orphans.
1977 Hamida Djandoubi is the last person to be executed by guillotine in France.
2008 The Large Hadron Collider at Cern, described as the biggest scientific experiment in history, is powered up in Geneva.
2015 A new human-like species, Homo Nalediis, is announced by a team of female archaeologists after being found deep in the Rising Star Cave system in Gauteng.
2018 UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres calls for talks, saying ‘climate change moving faster than we are’.
2019 On trial for entering a stadium disguised as a man, Iranian woman Sahar Khodayari dies after setting herself on fire.
2019 Bolivian wildfires destroy two million hectares of forest and grassland since August.
2022 UN Secretary-General António Guterres visits and calls for global help for flood-ravaged Pakistan where 33 million people are displaced and damage is estimated at $30 billion.