Today In History - Sunday, July 24th


Libya frees all six of the Medics in the HIV trial in Libya.

Lance Armstrong wins his seventh consecutive Tour de France.

Future Baseball Hall of Fame umpire Bruce Froemming ejects Boston Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek and New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez after Bronson Arroyo hits Rodriguez resulting in a bench clearing brawl initated by Varitek's punch of Rodriguez.

James Traficant is expelled from the United States House of Representatives on a vote of 420 to 1.

Simeon Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, the last Tsar of Bulgaria when he was a child, is sworn in as Prime Minister of Bulgaria, becoming the first monarch in history to regain political power through democratic election to a different office.
Bandaranaike Airport attack is carried out by 14 Tamil Tiger commandos, all died in this attack. They destroyed 11 Aircraft (mostly military) and damaged 15, there are no civilian casualties. This incident slowed down Sri Lankan economy.

Russell Eugene Weston, Jr. bursts into the United States Capitol and opens fire killing two police officers. He is later ruled to be incompetent to stand trial.

Manmohan Singh presents his budget speech to the Indian Parliament which led to economic liberalisation in India

Iraqi forces start massing on the Kuwait-Iraq border.

B. Rogers is born in an Atlanta, Georgia hospital, starting the beginning of a life long adventure.

George Brett batting for the Kansas City Royals against the New York Yankees, has a game-winning home run nullified in the "Pine Tar Incident".
The Black July anti-Tamil riots begin in Sri Lanka, killing between 400 and 3,000. Black July is generally regarded as the beginning of the Sri Lankan Civil War.

Heavy rain causes a mudslide that destroys a bridge at Nagasaki, Japan, killing 299.

The Quietly Confident Quartet of Australia wins the Men's 4 x 100 metre medley relay at the Moscow Olympics, the only time the United States has not won the event at Olympic level.

End of a four day long Libyan-Egyptian War.

Watergate scandal: the United States Supreme Court unanimously ruled that President Richard Nixon did not have the authority to withhold subpoenaed White House tapes and they order him to surrender the tapes to the Watergate special prosecutor.
After the Turkish invasion of Cyprus the Greek military junta collapses and democracy is restored.

Bugojno group is caught by Yugoslav security forces.

Apollo program: ''Apollo 11'' splashes down safely in the Pacific Ocean.

During an official state visit to Canada, French President Charles de Gaulle declares to a crowd of over 100,000 in Montreal: Vive le Québec libre! ("Long live free Quebec!"). The statement, interpreted as support for Quebec independence, delighted many Quebecers but angered the Canadian government and many English Canadians.

Michael Pelkey makes the first BASE jump from El Capitan along with Brian Schubert. Both came out with broken bones. BASE jumping has now been banned from El Cap.

Vietnam War: four F-4C Phantoms escorting a bombing raid at Kang Chi are the targets of antiaircraft missiles in the first such attack against American aircraft in the war. One is shot down and the other three sustain damage.

The iconic Bluenose II was launched in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. The schooner is a major Canadian symbol.

At the opening of the American National Exhibition in Moscow, U.S. Vice President Richard Nixon and Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev have a "Kitchen Debate".

At New York City's Copacabana Club, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis perform their last comedy show together. They began performing together on July 25, 1946.
Khartoum University College is awarded university status becoming the University of Khartoum.

Cape Canaveral Air Force Station begins operations with the launch of a Bumper rocket.

''Looney Tunes'' character Marvin the Martian makes his first appearance in the cartoon ''Haredevil Hare''.

World War II: Operation Gomorrah begins: British and Canadian aeroplanes bomb Hamburg by night, and American planes by day. By the end of the operation in November, 9,000 tons of explosives will have killed more than 30,000 people and destroyed 280,000 buildings.

First ascent of the Eiger north face.

Alabama drops rape charges against the so-called "Scottsboro Boys".

The world's first children's railway opens in Tbilisi, USSR.
The dust bowl heat wave reaches its peak, sending temperatures to 109°F (44°C) in Chicago and 104°F (40°C) in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

A fire at a home for the elderly in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania kills 48 people.

The Kellogg-Briand Pact, renouncing war as an instrument of foreign policy, goes into effect (it is first signed in Paris on August 27, 1928 by most leading world powers).

The Menin Gate war memorial is unveiled at Ypres.

The World Chess Federation FIDE is founded in Paris.
Archeologist Themistoklis Sofoulis becomes Prime Minister of Greece.

The Treaty of Lausanne, settling the boundaries of modern Turkey, is signed in Switzerland by Greece, Bulgaria and other countries that fought in World War I.

The draft of the British Mandate of Palestine was formally confirmed by the Council of the League of Nations; it came into effect on 26 September 1923.

The passenger ship ''S.S. Eastland'' capsizes in central Chicago, with the loss of 845 lives.

The discovery of Machu Picchu and much of its history has been glorified by Hiram Bingham. This issue has come to light after Hiram's son, Alfred, discovered a collection of letters that his father had sent his mother in 1911. Due to early publications, many people were led to believe that Hiram had long sought after the lost city of the Incas and eventually found it after trekking through a hazardous tropical jungle. Alfred Bingham reveals that this was not the case. In actuality, Machu Picchu was not a chief objective of Hiram's 1911 expedition. Nor was the search for the city long and dangerous. Hiram had been led to the location just forty-eight hours after beginning his journey. The road to Machu Picchu was not hidden in a treacherous wilderness, rather it was located next to a heavily populated region of farmers. Furthermore, Hiram frequently claimed that the paths to Machu Picchu were the most inaccessible in all of the Andes. However, the letters indicate that Hiram used a modern road system and travelled to the region with ease. It is said that the original journey only took Hiram one hour and a half's time. Today, tourists can make the trip from the train line to the ruins in fifteen minutes.

Alfred further demystifies his father's expedition after discovering a series of unpublished photographs from the original journey. Hiram had claimed that all the ruins of Machu Picchu were covered in a dense vegetation. Contrarily, the photographs depict the ruins in a clear open space. The letters and photographs suggest that Machu Picchu was not isolated in wilderness, but rather connected and populated by several indigenous families. Alfred also suggests that his father did not originally value his findings at Machu Picchu as he only spent one afternoon at the location before returning to his camp. He only decided to further investigate the ruins after some prominent plantation owners told him they knew little of the location's existence.

The Ottoman Empire captures the city of Shkodër, putting down the Albanian Revolt of 1910.

O. Henry is released from prison in Austin, Texas after serving three years for embezzlement from a bank.

Reconstruction: Tennessee becomes the first U.S. State to be readmitted to the Union following the American Civil War.

American Civil War: Battle of Kernstown - Confederate General Jubal Early defeats Union troops led by General George Crook in an effort to keep them out of the Shenandoah Valley.

After 17 months of travel, Brigham Young leads 148 Mormon pioneers into Salt Lake Valley, resulting in the establishment of Salt Lake City. Celebrations of this event include the Pioneer Day Utah state holiday and the Days of '47 Parade.

Benjamin Bonneville leads the first wagon train across the Rocky Mountains by using Wyoming's South Pass.

Slavery is abolished in Chile.
In Maracaibo, Venezuela the naval Battle of Lake Maracaibo takes place, where Admiral José Prudencio Padilla, defeats the Spanish Navy, thus culminating the independence for the Gran Colombia.

War of 1812: General Phineas Riall advances toward the Niagara River to halt Jacob Brown's American invaders.

The Kingdom of Georgia and the Russian Empire sign the Treaty of Georgievsk.

A Spanish treasure fleet of 10 ships under Admiral Ubilla leaves Havana, Cuba for Spain. Seven days later, 9 of them sink in a storm off the coast of Florida. A few centuries later, treasure is salvaged from these wrecks.

Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac founds the trading post at Fort Pontchartrain, which later becomes the city of Detroit, Michigan.

Mary, Queen of Scots, is forced to abdicate and replaced by her 1-year-old son James VI.

French explorer Jacques Cartier plants a cross on the Gaspé Peninsula and takes possession of the territory in the name of Francis I of France.

Citizens of Leeuwarden, Netherlands strike against a ban on foreign beer.

Battle of Harlaw, one of the bloodiest battles in Scotland, takes place.

Louis VII of France lays siege to Damascus during the Second Crusade.

Battle of Nocera between Ranulf II of Alife and Roger II of Sicily.