EVENTS, birthdays and anniversaries for 26 June
1284: According to legend, the Pied Piper reappeared in the German town of Hamelin. He had rid the town of rats but the townspeople refused to pay him, so he piped away 130 children.
1695: The company was formed that undertook the Darien Scheme and came to ruin five years later, through English obstruction, Spanish hostility and Scottish mismanagement.
1857: The first Victoria Cross investiture ceremony took place in Hyde Park. Queen Victoria awarded 62 servicemen this highest military honour.
1906: The first motor racing Grand Prix took place at Le Mans and was won by Hungarian Ferenc Szisz, driving a Renault at an average speed of 63mph.
1909: The Victoria and Albert Museum opened.
1917: King George V dropped the German titles from the Royal Family, and Saxe-Coburg-Gotha became Windsor.
1939: The first National Serviceman, number 10000001, Private Rupert Alexander, signed up with the Middlesex Regiment.
1962: Billie Jean Moffit, 18, knocked out top seed Margaret Smith – the start of Billie Jean King’s long reign at Wimbledon.
1977: Elvis Presley gave his last concert performance. He died two months later.
1991: After battling for 15 years to prove their innocence, the “Maguire Seven” were cleared of running an IRA bomb factory in England.
1990: Ten-year battle over ski development project for Lurcher’s Gully on Cairn Gorm ended with Scottish secretary Malcolm Rifkind’s veto.
1994: The driver and a passenger died when vandals derailed a train at Greenock.
1995: Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani deposed his father, Khalifa bin Hamad al-Thani, the Emir of Qatar, in a bloodless coup.
1996: Irish journalist Veronica Guerin was shot in her car while in traffic in the outskirts of Dublin.
1997: The US Supreme Court ruled that the Communications Decency Act violated the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.
2008: Labour finished fifth in a by-election at Henley, behind the Greens and the BNP.
2009: The Queen was given a year’s supply of ice-cream at the Royal Highland Show, at Ingliston, near Edinburgh.
Claudio Abbado, Italian conductor, 80; Paul Thomas Anderson, American film director, 43; Georgie Fame, British singer and songwriter, 70; Colin Greenwood, rock musician (Radiohead), 44; Sean Hayes, actor, 43; Chris Isaak, American actor and singer, 57; Mick Jones, British rock guitarist (The Clash), 58; Lord Maclennan of Rogart, MP 1966-2001, president, Liberal Democrats 1994-98, 77; Gordon McQueen, Scottish footballer, 61; Emma Noble, British model, 42; Chris O’Donnell, American actor, 43; Jason Schwartzman, American actor, 33; Earl of St Andrews, son of Duke and Duchess of Kent, 51; Colin Wilson, British author, 82; Pamela Wright, Scottish golfer, 49.
Births: 1796, Tsar Nicholas I; 1824 William Thomson, 1st Baron Kelvin, physicist; 1914 Laurie Lee, author (Cider with Rosie) .
Deaths: 1541 Francisco Pizarro, conqueror of the Inca empire; 1810 Joseph Montgolfier, ballooning pioneer; 1827 Samuel Crompton, inventor of the spinning mule; 1830 King George IV; 2011 Lord Rodger of Earlsferry, Lord Justice-General and Lord President of the Court of Session 1996-2001.