On this day: Men were conscripted for war service

British men between the ages of 19 and 41 were conscripted for war service. Picture: Getty
British men between the ages of 19 and 41 were conscripted for war service. Picture: Getty
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Events, birthdays and anniversaries for September 2.

1666: The Great Fire of London began in a bakehouse in Pudding Lane and ended on 6 September at Pye Corner. Although an enormous amount of property was destroyed, including St Paul’s Cathedral, only six people died.

1773: Warren Hastings, first British governor-general of India, formed alliance with state of Oudh for campaign against the Marathas.

1865: Maori War in New Zealand ended when governor issued peace proclamation.

1866: Crete, after long discontent against Turkish authority, revolted and merged with Greece.

1898: The Battle of Omdurman took place, with victory for Kitchener’s British-Egyptian forces over the Khalifa’s Dervishes, winning back the Sudan for Egypt.

1923: The Irish Free State held its first elections.

1939: Under the National Service Bill, men in Britain between the ages of 19 and 41 were conscripted.

1942: German SS completed destruction of the Warsaw Ghetto. More than 50,000 Jews were killed or shipped to death camps.

1945: Independent Vietnam Republic was proclaimed by Ho Chi Minh, who became president.

1962: Western Iran was shattered by earthquake, and 200 towns and villages were reported destroyed.

1986: Death toll confirmed at 79, with 319 others reported missing, in sinking of Soviet passenger liner in Black Sea.

1987: Philips launched the video version of its compact disc, called CD-video, combining digital sound and high-definition video.

1988: In the North Sea, a seal virus was reported to be spreading from common to grey seals.

1988: Iran accused Iraq of more than 70 violations of two-week-old ceasefire.

1989: South African riot police arrested more than 400 anti-apartheid protesters in Cape Town.

1990: Iraq allowed 700 hostages, mainly women and children, to leave the country, including 200 Britons.

1991: The United States recognised the independence of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

1995: Frank Bruno became world heavyweight boxing champion when he outpointed Oliver McCall in London.

2008: New Orleans breathed a sigh of relief after Hurricane Gustav made its way inland from the Gulf coast, but largely missed the US city that had been ravaged by Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

2010: Former Labour prime minister Tony Blair’s book, A Journey, became Waterstone’s fastest-selling autobiography ever.

BIRTHDAYS

Lennox Lewis CBE, former undisputed world heavyweight boxing champion, 49; Jimmy Connors, Wimbledon champion and commentator, 62; Derek Fowlds, actor, 77; Mark Harmon, actor, 63; Salma Hayek, actress, 48; Keanu Reeves, actor, 50; Chris Tremlett, cricketer, 33; Joey Barton, footballer, 32; Jonathan Goldstein, American screenwriter and TV producer, 46; Marcus Ericsson, Swedish racing driver, 24; Hiroki Yoshimoto, Japanese racing driver and rock vocalist; Tom Steels, Belgian cyclist, 43; Andreas Möller, German footballer, 47; Olivier Panis, French racing driver, 48; Carlos Valderrama, Colombian footballer, 53; Guy Laliberté, founder of Cirque du Soleil, 55; Rosalind Ashford-Holmes, R&B and blues singer (Martha Reeves and the Vandellas), 71.

ANNIVERSARIES

Births: 1726 John Howard, prison reformer; 1778 Louis Bonaparte, king of Holland 1806-1810, brother of Napoleon I; 1877 Frederick Soddy, chemist and physicist; 1887 Sir Robert Bruce Lockhart, Anstruther-born diplomat and writer; 1911 Eileen Way, actress; 1913 Bill Shankly OBE, Scottish football manager; 1914 Lord George-Brown, Labour politician; 1917 Laurindo Almaida, Brazilian guitarist and composer, creator of “jazz samba”; 1927 Francis Matthews, actor; 1927 Leonard Katzman, film and TV producer; 1928 Horace Silver, jazz pianist; 1929 Victor Spinetti, actor, director, poet and author; 1938 Glyn Worsnip, TV presenter; 1946 Billy Preston, musician; 1948 Christa McAuliffe, teacher and astronaut.

Deaths: 490 Pheidippides, Greek hero and original marathon runner; 1397 Francesco Landini, Italian composer; 1540 Lebna Dengel, emperor of Ethiopia 1507 to 1540; 1764 Nathaniel Bliss, Astronomer Royal; 1820 Jiaqing, emperor of China 1796 to 1820; 1834 Thomas Telford, engineer, road, bridge and canal builder; 1937 Baron Pierre de Coubertin, reviver of the Olympic Games in 1896; 1957 Sir William Alexander Craigie, Scottish philologist and lexocographer; 1973 JRR Tolkien, author; 1994 Roy Castle OBE, musician and entertainer; 1997 Sir Rudolf Bing, founder of Edinburgh Festival and artistic director from 1947-49; 1998 Sir Alastair Dunnett, editor of The Scotsman 1956-1972; 1998 Jackie Blanchflower, footballer.