List of May 23 Historical Events and Facts
- 1498: Girolamo Savonarola is burned at the stake in Florence, Italy, on the orders of Pope Alexander VI.
- 1533: The marriage of King Henry VIII to Catherine of Aragon is declared null and void.
- 1568: The Netherlands declare their independence from Spain.
- 1568: Dutch rebels led by Louis of Nassau, brother of William I of Orange, defeat Jean de Ligne, Duke of Aremberg and his loyalist troops in the Battle of Heiligerlee, opening the Eighty Years’ War.
- 1609: Official ratification of the Second Charter of Virginia takes place.
- 1618: The Second Defenestration of Prague precipitates the Thirty Years’ War.
- 1701: After being convicted of piracy and of murdering William Moore, Captain William Kidd is hanged in London.
- 1706: Battle of Ramillies: John Churchill, the 1st Duke of Marlborough, defeats a French army under Marshal Villeroi.
- 1788: South Carolina ratifies the Constitution as the 8th American state.
- 1805: Napoleon Bonaparte is crowned King of Italy with the Iron Crown of Lombardy in the Cathedral of Milan.
- 1813: South American independence leader SimÛn BolÌvar enters MÈrida, leading the invasion of Venezuela, and is proclaimed El Libertador .
- 1829: Accordion patent granted to Cyrill Demian in Vienna.
- 1844: Declaration of the B·b: a merchant of Shiraz announces that he is a Prophet and founds a religious movement that would later be brutally crushed by the Persian government.
- 1846: Mexican-American War: President Mariano Paredes of Mexico unofficially declares war on the United States.
- 1873: The Canadian Parliament establishes the North West Mounted Police, the forerunner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
- 1900: American Civil War: Sergeant William Harvey Carney becomes the first African American to be awarded the Medal of Honor, for his heroism in the Assault on the Battery Wagner in 1863.
- 1907: The unicameral Parliament of Finland gathers for its first plenary session.
- 1911: The New York Public Library is dedicated.
- 1915: World War I: Italy joins the Allies after they declare war on Austria-Hungary.
- 1923: Launch of Belgium’s SABENA airline.
- 1934: American bank robbers Bonnie and Clyde are ambushed by police and killed in Black Lake, Louisiana.
- 1934: The Auto-Lite Strike culminates in the “Battle of Toledo”, a five-day melÈe between 1,300 troops of the Ohio National Guard and 6,000 picketers.
- 1939: The U.S. Navy submarine USS Squalus sinks off the coast of New Hampshire during a test dive, causing the death of 24 sailors and two civilian technicians. The remaining 32 sailors and one civilian naval architect are rescued the following day.
- 1945: World War II: Heinrich Himmler, the head of the SS, commits suicide while in Allied custody.
- 1949: The Federal Republic of Germany is established and the Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany is proclaimed.
- 1951: Tibetans sign the Seventeen Point Agreement for the Peaceful Liberation of Tibet with the People’s Republic of China.
- 1958: Explorer 1 ceases transmission.
- 1967: Egypt closes the Straits of Tiran and blockades the port of Eilat at the northern end of the Gulf of Aqaba to Israeli shipping, laying the foundations for the Six Day War.
- 1995: Oklahoma City bombing: In Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, the remains of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building are imploded.
- 1995: The first version of the Java programming language is released.
- 1998: The Good Friday Agreement is accepted in a referendum in Northern Ireland with 75% voting yes.
- 2002: The “55 parties” clause of the Kyoto protocol is reached after its ratification by Iceland.
- 2004: Part of Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport’s Terminal 2E collapses, killing four people and injuring three others.
- 2006: Alaskan stratovolcano Mount Cleveland erupts.
- 2008: The International Court of Justice awards Middle Rocks to Malaysia and Pedra Branca to Singapore, ending a 29-year territorial dispute between the two countries.
He is considered to be a forerunner of the Bah·’Ì Faith, and Bah·’Ìs celebrate the day as a holy day.
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