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On July 31st...
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1498 Christopher Columbus reached the island of Trinidad.
1547 King Francis I of France died.
1556 St. Ignatius of Loyola died.
1750 King Joćo V of Portugal died.
1790 The first patent in the United States was granted, to Samuel Hopkins for a potash process.
1803 Inventor John Ericsson was born.
1813 British troops invaded Plattsburgh, New York.
1837 William Clarke Quantrill, leader of a band of guerrillas during the Civil War, was born.
1849 Benjamin Chambers, Sr., patented a breech loading cannon.
1856 Christchurch, New Zealand, was chartered as a city.
1865 The first narrow gauge mainline railway in the world opened at Grandchester, Australia.
1867 S.S. Kresge, founder of K-Mart, was born.
1875 Andrew Johnson, 17th President of the United States, died.
1876 The U.S. Coast Guard officers' training school was established at New Bedford Massachusetts.
1879 The first cable connection between South Africa and Europe was laid by British electrical engineer Charles Tilston Bright.
1886 Film and television
producer Fred Quimby was born.
1887 Early Army aviator Thomas DeWitt Milling was born.
1893 Henry Perky patented Shredded Wheat.
1912 Economist Milton Friedman was born.
1917 The Third Battle of Ypres began.
1931 The USS Constitution ("Old Ironsides") was recommissioned.
1932 Actor Ted Cassidy was born.
1948 Idlewild Field (now John F. Kennedy International Airport) was dedicated.
U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare was
1957 Actor Dirk Blocker was born.
The Federation of Malaysia was formed.
Ranger 7 became the first U.S. spacecraft to
successfully impact the moon's surface.
1965 Author J.K. Rowling was born.
1975 Teamsters Union president Jimmy Hoffa was last seen alive.
1988 The last Playboy club closed (in Lansing, Michigan).
1990 Bosnia-Herzegovina declared its independence.
1993 King Baudouin I of Belgium died.
2010 Musician Mitch Miller died.
2012 Author Gore Vidal died.
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This page was last updated on July 30, 2017.