On this day
1812: One of the worst winters on record began – and caused the defeat of the mighty Napoleon. During his retreat from Moscow, troops endured temperatures as low as -37C for 27 consecutive days.
1859: Flogging in the British Army was abolished.
1922: The SS – Schutzstaffel or “Protection Squad” – was formed in Germany.
1938: “Kristallnacht” in Germany, when Nazis burned 267 synagogues and destroyed thousands of Jewish homes and businesses, smashing windows – which gave the night its name.
1940: Neville Chamberlain died just months after resigning as Britain’s wartime prime minister.
1979: A computer fault led to a full-scale nuclear alert in the United States.