Also on this day


The first Mickey Mouse comic strip ap­pears in the USA.

Johnny Cash, right, records iconic live al­bum at Fol­som State Prison.

Cruise ship Costa Con­cor­dia sinks off the coast of Italy, killing 32.

pointed out the ob­vi­ous flaws in the ev­i­dence and ac­cused the army of covering up an in­ves­ti­ga­tion which iden­ti­fied the real cul­prit.

The re­sponse was ex­tra­or­di­nary. Zola was pros­e­cuted for li­bel, ar­guably his in­ten­tion as it meant the case, in­clud­ing ev­i­dence sup­port­ing Drey­fus, would be heard in pub­lic. He was con­victed, fined and jailed for a year, although he fled to Bri­tain to avoid the sen­tence.

But the storm led to Drey­fus be­ing re­turned to France for a new court mar­tial the fol­low­ing year. He was con­victed again but par­doned by the Pres­i­dent, setting him free. He ap­pealed again and in 1906 was cleared of all charges, pro­moted from Cap­tain to Ma­jor and awarded the Lé­gion d’hon­neur for good mea­sure.

Zola re­turned to France in 1899 but didn’t live to see Drey­fus ex­on­er­ated. He died in 1902. Drey­fus at­tended the fu­neral and the writer now lies in Paris’s Pan­théon, along­side Vic­tor Hugo and Alexan­dre Du­mas.

The L’Aurore front page re­mains one of the most cel­e­brated in jour­nal­ism and is a strik­ing ex­am­ple of the power of the press.

Last week I asked which Not The Nine O’Clock News co­me­dian was born on Jan­uary 6, 1955. The an­swer is Rowan Atkin­son. This week’s ques­tion: which ac­claimed Ir­ish nov­el­ist died this day in 1941?

Watch Shaun and his col­leagues on The Chase on ITV at 5pm ev­ery day of the week

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