Today in history
On this date:
In 1430, Joan of Arc, taken prisoner by the Burgundians in May, was handed over to Pierre Cauchon, the bishop of Beauvais.
In 1789, a Paris mob stormed the notorious Bastille prison and released seven political prisoners during the French Revolution. Bastille Day is now a national holiday in France. In 1865, a team led by British mountain climber Edward Whymper became the first to reach the summit of the Matterhorn, on the Swiss-Italian border. Four members of the team fell to their deaths during the descent when a rope broke.
In 1867, Alfred Nobel demonstrated dynamite for the first time at a quarry in Redhill, Surrey, England.
In 1881, American outlaw gunfighter William Bonney -better known as “Billy the Kid” -- was shot to death by Pat Garrett in Fort Sumner, New Mexico.
In 1915, Sir Robert Borden became the first Canadian prime minister to attend a British cabinet meeting.
In 1924, former U.S. president Gerald Ford was born. He died Dec. 26, 2006.
In 1933, Robert Bourassa was born in Montreal. He served as Quebec’s premier from 1970-76 and again from 198594. He died of cancer in 1996.
In 1933, “Popeye the Sailor Man” appeared in his first cartoon.
In 1933, the National Socialist -- or Nazi -- party was declared the only legal political group in Germany.