Today in History - July 27
S.S. Great Eastern Lays Transatlantic Cable
The Battle of Killiecrankie
-- Compiled by James Finlayson-Bald
The S.S. Great Eastern at Heart's Content, Newfoundland, in July 1866 at the end of its transatlantic cable laying mission.
On this date:
1214--Battle of Bouvines another outing in the Anglo-French wars. The French were commanded by Philip Augustus. The English, Flemings and Germans, (strange bedfellows), were led by Otho IV. The French victory was so decisive that it broke the coalition and made Philip Augustus secure for the first time in his reign.
1276--James I, the Conquerer, King of Aragon, died. He didn't really "conquer" anybody, took four years to annex the Balearics and left the Moors to their own devices, a very quiet reign in fact, but he had the wit, rare in a monarch of his day, to write his autobiography.
1689--Battle of Killiecrankie. The Royalist troops, loyal to William of Orange were commanded by General Mackay and sent to apprehend John Graham, Viscount Dundee whom a Con-vention Parliament, sucking up to William, had declared a rebel and a fugitive. Dundee had 2500 Highland Jacobites against Mackay's 3500 and three guns (which exploded when fired). Dundee lured Mackay on the plain of Kil1iecrankie, swept down from the Pass and defeated the Royalists, who were no match for the close fighting with dirk and broadsword, employed by the Highlanders, in fact 2000 government troops died before the Highlanders broke off to loot the baggage train. Mackay escaped to Stirling with 400 of his men and the colours. Dundee died in the action.
1777--The British in Detroit sent fifteen Indian war parties to attack the American settle-ments in Kentucky.
1861--General George McClellan assumed command of the Union forces in Washington and surrounding, areas.
1866--The Great Eastern arrived at Heart's Content in Newfoundland having successfully laid the transatlantic cable.
1946--Miss Gertrude Stein died. After studying psychology under William James and medicine at Johns Hopkins, she went to Paris in 1905 where she made her home. She had much influence on modern art movements and literature.
1974--The House of Representatives Judiciary Committee adopted the first article of a bill urging that President Nixon be impeached as a result of his part in the Watergate Affair.
1970--Antonio de Oliveira Salazar, Prime Minister of Portugal, died.
-- Enrique Granados, composer (1867-1916)
-- Hilaire Belloc, poet (1870-1953).
"The motor car is as much an instrument of lawlessness as is the jemmy."
-- Lord Chief Justice Parker
The above article was written by James Finlayson-Bald.
Edited and illustrations added by David Paul Wagner.