Events, birthdays and anniversaries for 19 April
1587: Sir Francis Drake’s fleet sacked Cadiz in Spain. He called the action “singeing the King of Spain’s beard”.
1689: Followers of the Covenanter Richard Cameron, who had assembled at Edinburgh to guard the Revolution Convention of Estates, formed into a regiment under the Earl of Angus. The Cameronians were disbanded in 1968.
1783: United States Congress announced end of War of American Independence.
1843: The gas meter was patented by Carl Ludwig Farwig.
1943: About 60,000 poorly-armed Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto put up fierce resistance when attacked by a strong Nazi force with orders to wipe them out. 1951: Miss Sweden won the first Miss World Contest, held at the Lyceum Ballroom in London.
1956: Prince Rainier of Monaco married film actress Grace Kelly. She was the first American to marry a reigning monarch.
1971: Soviets launched the first space station, Salyut.
1975: India’s first satellite was launched by Soviet rocket.
1982: Salisbury, capital of Zimbabwe, was renamed Harare.
1990: The government won a Commons majority of 97 for its bill to give full British citizenship to up to 225,000 Hong Kong Chinese.
1991: First of 5,000 British troops left for Incirlik, Turkey, to help set up Kurdish “safe havens” in northern Iraq for 600,000 refugees.
1993: At least 85 people died when the 51-day Waco cult siege in Texas ended as a giant ball of flame engulfed the compound.
1994: South Africa was pulled back from the edge of disaster when Zulu Chief Buthelezi called off his boycott of the country’s first all-race elections.
1995: A bomb ripped through a federal government building in Oklahoma, killing 168 people.
2005: Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, 78, of Germany, was elected successor to Pope John Paul II, taking the name Benedict XVI.
2009: Scottish scientists revealed they had discovered genetic “brakes” which could stop or slow down diseases such as MS and cancer.
2010: Research suggested that using sunbeds can be just as addictive as drug-taking.
Margo MacDonald, MSP, MP 1973-4 and broadcaster, 70; 11th Earl of Annandale and Hartfell, vice-lord lieutenant of Dumfries and Galloway, 72; Ashley Judd, actress, 45; Sue Barker, tennis player and broadcaster, 57; Harold “Dickie” Bird OBE, cricket umpire, 80; Hayden Christensen, actor, 32; Tim Curry, actor, 67; Trevor Francis, footballer and manager, 59; David Icke, self-styled prophet, 61; Dame Kelly Holmes, Olympic double gold medal winner, 43; Kate Hudson, actress, 34; Professor Hugh Pennington, Aberdeen University, E coli expert, 76; Alan Price, British pop musician, 72; Maria Sharapova, tennis player, 27; Ruby Wax, actress and comedienne, 59; Andrew Welsh, MP 1997-2001, 69.
Births: 1903 Eliot Ness, American government special agent; 1905 Jim Mollison, Glasgow-born aviator who set record for Australia-England flight; 1932 Jayne Mansfield, actress; 1935 Dudley Moore, actor, musician.
Deaths: 1824 Lord Byron, romantic poet; 1881 Benjamin Disraeli, Conservative prime minister; 1882 Charles Darwin, naturalist, theory of evolution; 1989 Daphne du Maurier, author; 1992 Frankie Howerd, comedian.