On this day: First disco | Electric clock patented

EVENTS, birthdays and anniversaries for 11 January

Scottish actor John Sessions celebrates his birthday today. Picture: TSPL
Scottish actor John Sessions celebrates his birthday today. Picture: TSPL

1671: The High Court of Justiciary reconstituted as the supreme criminal court in Scotland.

1841: The electric clock was patented by John Barwise and Alexander Bain.

Sign up to our Opinion newsletter

1905: The cost of a third-class ticket by liner from Britain to America went up to £6.

1918: The Representation of the People Act was passed, giving votes to women.

1922: Leonard Thompson became the first diabetic patient to be treated successfully with insulin, at Toronto General Hospital.

1942: Japanese took Kuala Lumpur, Malaya.

1945: Truce was declared in Greek civil war.

1946: Albania was proclaimed a people’s republic, with General Enver Hoxha at its head.

1962: Avalanche buried village in the Peruvian Andes; 3,000 reported killed.

1963: The first disco, called Whisky-A-Go-Go, opened in Los Angeles.

1970: In Nigeria, 32-month-old secessionist Biafran regime collapsed under onslaughts by Nigerian government.

1973: The Open University awarded its first degrees to 867 students.

1974: The first sextuplets to survive were born to Sue Rosenkowitz in Cape Town, South Africa.

1976: President Rodriguez Lara of Ecuador ousted in a coup.

1989: More Cuban troops left Angola under a United States-brokered agreement among Cuba, South Africa and Angola.

1990: 250,000 Lithuanians demonstrated for independence.

1991: Soviet tanks stormed key buildings in Vilnius, killing 15, as Moscow countered Lithuanian independence moves.

1996: One of the greatest private collections of surrealist and dadaist art, including works by Dali, Magritte, Bacon, Ernst and Man Ray, was bequeathed to the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh, by Gabrielle Keiller.

2008: American athlete Marion Jones, 32, was jailed for six months for lying about drug use and cheque fraud. She had already admitted taking a performance enhancing drug from 1999, a year before she won three gold medals and two bronze at the Sydney Olympics. She had already returned her medals.


Phyllis Logan, Paisley-born actress, 58; Mary J Blige, R&B singer, 43; Sir Alan Bowness CBE, art historian, director, Tate Gallery 1980-88, 86; Anna Calder-Marshall, actress, 67; Jason Connery, actor, 51; Ben Crenshaw, golfer, 62; Naomi Judd, US folk singer, 68; Melvyn Hayes, actor, 79; Jamelia, singer, 33; Brian Moore, rugby player and commentator, 52; Lee Ritenour, American jazz guitarist, 62; Arthur Scargill, former mineworkers’ leader, 76; John Sessions, actor and comedian, 61; Rod Taylor, film and television actor, 84.


Births: 1794 Sir Charles Hastings, founder British Medical Association; 1857 Fred Archer, champion jockey and five-times Derby winner; 1921 Mick McManus, wrestler; 1943 Henry Cecil, racehorse trainer.

Deaths: 1928 Thomas Hardy, poet and novelist; 1963 Hugh Gaitskell, politician; 1966 Alberto Giacometti, sculptor and painter; 1969 Richmal Crompton, creator of Just William; 1999 Naomi, Lady Mitchison, writer; 2008 Sir Edmund Hillary, beekeeper, first person to reach the summit of Mount Everest in May 1953.