On this day: Ronald Reagan launched political career
Events, birthdays and anniversaries for 27 October
1275: The city of Amsterdam was founded.
1644: At the second Battle of Newbury, during the English Civil War, the combined parliament forces gained a tactical victory over rhe Royalists, although no strategic advantage was gained.
1662: Charles II sold Dunkirk to Louis XIV of France.
1904: The New York subway opened.
1913: President Woodrow Wilson said that the US would never attack another country.
1925: Water skis were first patented by Fred Waller.
1927: Fox Movietone News, the first news film with sound, was shown at the Roxy Theatre, New York.
1931: National government won largest victory in British poll history; 554 seats against 56 for opposition.
1932: British government ordered withdrawal of Greek Memories by Compton Mackenzie because it revealed identity of the head of the Secret Service during the First World War.
1936: Wallis Simpson, the future Duchess of Windsor, was divorced in Ipswich from her husband Ernest.
1938: American chemical company DuPont announced that their new synthetic material was to be called nylon.
1944: The Japanese fleet was heavily defeated in the world’s largest naval battle of Leyte Gulf, which started on 22 October and involved a total of 231 ships and 1,996 aircraft.
1953: Six of the seven members of the crew of the Arbroath lifeboat, Robert Lindsay, drowned when it capsized after a fruitless all-night search for the source of reported flares. It was thought that the flares had come from the Dundee sand ship Islandmagee which disappeared with her crew of six on passage from Dundee to Leith.
1958: The first edition of the BBC television programme Blue Peter was transmitted.
1964 The political career of future US president Ronald Reagan was launched when he delivered a speech on behalf of Republican presidential candidate Barry Goldwater.
1967: Royal Assent was given to David Steel’s UK Abortion Act.
1978: Israel’s prime minister Menachem Begin and Anwar Sadat, president of Egypt, shared the Nobel Peace Prize in recognition of the Camp David Agreement, which brought about a negotiated peace.
1986: “Big Bang” day in the Stock Exchange of the City of London with the computerisation of share dealings.
1989: The inquest into the death of Julie Ward, the British woman who died in a Kenyan game reserve in 1988, decided that the 28-year-old was the victim of foul play.
1993: Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams was widely condemned for helping to carry the coffin at the funeral of an IRA bomber killed in Belfast.
1995: Latvia applied for membership of the European Union.
1997: Stock markets around the world crashed because of fears of a global economic meltdown. The Dow Jones Industrial Average plummeted 554.26 points to 7,161.15.
2010: James Bond’s Aston Martin DB5, which was first driven by Sean Connery in Goldfinger, fetched £2.6 million at auction.
Leo Baxendale, cartoonist (creator of The Bash Street Kids), 85; David Bryant CBE, bowls champion, 84; John Cleese, British comic actor, 76; Peter Firth, British actor, 62; Sir Paul Fox CBE, British television executive, 90; Glenn Hoddle, football manager and former player, 58; Tom McKean, athlete, 52; Stewart McKimmie, Scottish footballer, 53; Vanessa-Mae Nicholson, violinist and alpine skier, 37; Kelly Osbourne, television personality and fashion designer, 31; Chris Tavare, Test cricketer, 61; Mark Taylor, Test cricketer, 51; AN Wilson, author, 65; Eden Taylor-Draper, actress (Emmerdale), 18.
Births: 1466 Erasmus, priest, teacher and theologian; 1728 Captain James Cook, naval officer and explorer; 1811 Isaac Singer, inventor and manufacturer of sewing machines; 1858 Theodore Roosevelt, 26th United States president; 1872 Emily Post, author; 1914 Dylan Thomas, poet and author of Under Milk Wood.
Deaths: AD901 King Alfred the Great”; 1505 Ivan the Great, Tsar of Russia; 1605 Akbar “the Great”, Mughal emperor of India; 1988 Charles Hawtrey, film actor, especially in Carry On series; 2013 Lou Reed, American rock musician.