On this day: The Tay Road Bridge was opened

Events, birthdays and anniversaries for 18 August

Traffic queues in Dundee on this day in 1966, waiting to use the new Tay Road Bridge designed by architect William Fairhurst

1587: Virginia Dare became the first child born of English parents in the New World – on Roanoke Island, North Carolina – seven days after Sir Walter Raleigh’s second expedition landed.

1736: The earliest successful appendix operation was performed by a surgeon to King George II, Claudius Amyand.

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1896: France annexed Madagascar, whose treaties with other states were annulled.

1911: Official Secrets Act first passed in Britain.

1914: US president Woodrow Wilson proclaimed American neutrality in First World War.

1920: British and Egyptian delegations conferred on ways to provide for recognition of Egyptian independence.

1932: Scottish aviator Jim Mollison made the first westbound transatlantic solo flight, from Portmarnock, Ireland, to Pennfield, New Brunswick.

1939: Soviet Union and Germany signed commercial agreement.

1941: National Fire Service was established in Britain.

1948: Lester Piggott, aged 12, rode his first winner on his seventh ride.

1960: The birth control pill was introduced in America.

1964: South Africa was banned from participating in the Olympics because of its racial policies.

1966: The Tay Road Bridge was opened.

1967: Cunard liner Queen Mary was sold to the town of Long Beach, California.

1973: Archaeologists in Greece uncovered evidence that man had gone to sea as early as 7,500BC.

1976: Soviet spacecraft Luna 24 landed in the Sea of Crises on the Moon and scooped up samples of soil.

1977: Democratic United States president Jimmy Carter’s administration denounced as illegal Israel’s decision to establish three new Jewish settlements on Jordan’s West Bank.

1977: Elvis Presley was buried in Memphis, Tennessee. It was estimated that 130,000 mourners paid their respects before the burial.

1990: President Saddam Hussein threatened to starve western babies in Iraq if Iraqi children suffered food shortages as a result of the blockade.

1992: Britain agreed to send 1,800 peace-keeping troops to Bosnia.

2008: Pervez Musharraf, the president of Pakistan who faced impeachment on charges drawn up by the governing coalition, announced his resignation.


Robert Redford, actor and director, 78; Brian Aldiss OBE, science fiction author, 89; Kris Boyd, Scottish footballer, 31; Richard D James, aka Aphex Twin, electronic musician, 43; Edward Norton, actor, 45; Roman Polanski, French-Polish film director, producer, writer and actor, 81; Bryan Ruiz, Costa Rican footballer; Mohammad Sarwar, first ever British Muslim MP (Labour 1997-2010), 62; Christian Slater, actor, 45; Madeleine Stowe, actress, 56; Ross McCormack, Scottish footballer, 28; MIKA, singer-songwriter, 31; Rosalynn Carter, US First Lady 1977-1981, 87; Felipe Calderón, president of Mexico 2006-2012; Victoria Elizabeth Coren, writer, TV presenter and poker player, 42; Huw Edwards, journalist, TV presenter and newsreader; Just Fontaine, French footballer and record goalscorer in World Cup finals, 81; Ronnie Carroll, singer, 80; Gianni Rivera, Italian former footballer, 71; Ricky Villa, Argentine football coach and former player; Sandra Farmer-Patrick, Jamaican athlete, 52; Esteban Cambiasso, Argentine footballer, 34.


Births: 1750 Antonio Salieri, Italian composer; 1792 John Russell, first Earl Russell, prime minister and champion of parliamentary reform; 1873 Otto Harbach, lyricist (Smoke Gets In your Eyes); 1878 Fritz Brun, Swiss composer; 1904 Max Factor, president of cosmetics empire; 1908 Edgar Faure, French prime minister 1952, 1955-1956, president 1973-1978; 1917 Caspar Weinberger, US secretary of defence 1981-1987; 1920 Shelley Winters, actress; 1920 Godfrey Evans, England Test cricket wicketkeeper; 1939 William Rushton, actor, author, cartoonist and broadcaster; 1939 Sir Robert Horton, businessman, chairman of BP; 1952 Patrick Swayze, actor.

Deaths: 1227 Genghis Khan, Mongol emperor; 1276 Adrian V, Italian pope; 1503 Alexander VI, Spanish pope; 1803 James Beattie, poet; 1809 Matthew Boulton, engineer and partner of James Watt; 1874 Sir William Fairbairn, engineer and inventor; 1940 Walter Chrysler, automotive executive, founder of Chrysler Corporation; 1969 Otto Stern, Nobel laureate physicist; 2004 Elmer Bernstein, film score composer; 2012 Scott McKenzie, singer-songwriter (San Francisco [Be Sure To Wear Flowers In Your Hair]).