January 31: Today in History – Historical Events
Early Centuries – January 31 Historic Events – Before the 1700s
1. 31st Jan 1504: French Cede Naples to Ferdinand of Aragon by the treaty of Lyons.
2. 31st Jan 1531: King Ferdinand of Austria and King Janos Zapolyai of Hungary accept each other.
3. 31st Jan 1578: Spain is overcome by the Dutch and English forces in the battle of Gembloers.
4. 31st Jan 1596: The Catholic League was disbanded on this day.
5. 31st Jan 1609: Wisselband of Amsterdam was established on this day.
6. 31st Jan 1627: The Spanish government goes bankrupt on this day.
7. 31st Jan 1696: There was a revolt by undertakers in Amsterdam after the introduction of funeral reforms.
18th Century – What Happened on January 31 – The 1700s
8. 31st Jan 1747; At the London Lock Hospital the first venereal diseases clinic was opened on this day.
19th Century – January 31 This Day That Year – The 1800s
9. 31st Jan 1804; The fleet of British Vice-admiral William Blighs reaches Curacao on this day.
10. 31st Jan 1814: Gervasio Antonio de Posadas becomes the Supreme Director of Argentina.
11. 31st Jan 1846: Juneautown and Kilbourntown unified as the city of Milwaukee in Wisconsin after the Milwaukee Bridge War.
12. 31st Jan 1851: The invention of condensed milk was announced by Gail Borden.
13. 31st Jan 1851: Orphan’s Asylum was founded on this day in California which was the first to be founded.
14. 31st Jan 1855: Heavy snow on this day blocks western railroads.
15. 31st Jan 1861: In the U.S. Civil War the U.S. Mint at New Orleans was taken over by the State of Louisiana.
16. 31st Jan 1865: On this day the U.S. Congress passes the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery in America.
17. 31st Jan 1865: During the U.S. Civil War, General Robert E. Lee was on this day named Commander-In-Chief of the Confederate Armies.
18. 31st Jan 1867: Maronite nationalist leader Youssef Karam leaves Lebanon for Algeria on board of a French ship.
19. 31st Jan 1871: Millions of birds flew over western San Francisco darkening the sky.
20. 31st Jan 1874: Jesse James gang on this day robs a train at Gads Hill in Missouri.
21. 31st Jan 1876: All Native Americans on this day were ordered to move into reservations by the United States.
22. 31st Jan 1891: The first attempt of the Portuguese republican revolution broke out in the northern city of Porto.
23. 31st Jan 1893: On this day the publication of “Westminster Gazette” begins.
24. 31st Jan 1895: Joes Marti and others leave New York City for an invasion of Spanish Cuba.
20th Century – Important Events On This Day January 31st – The 1900s
25. 31st Jan 1901: Boer general John Smuts and De la Rey conquer Mud River Transvaal.
26. 31st Jan 1905: Carroll Wright appointed 1st U.S. Commissioner of Labor.
27. 31st Jan 1905: First automobile to exceed 100 mph, A.G. MacDonald, Daytona Beach.
28. 31st Jan 1905: Carroll Wright was on this day appointed as the 1st U.S. Commissioner of Labor.
29. 31st Jan 1906: A strong earthquake strikes Columbia. It was the strongest instrumentally recorded (8.1 Richter) earthquake.
30. 31st Jan 1911: San Francisco was named by the Congress as the site for the celebration of the opening ceremony of the Panama Canal.
31. 31st Jan 1915: On this day Germans launch the first poison gas attack on Russia.
32. 31st Jan 1917: On this day Germany notified the U.S. that their U-boats would attack neutral merchant ships also.
33. 31st Jan 1917: Mexican President Carranza announced a new constitution with many liberal elements: most of which will not be implemented by his regime.
34. 31st Jan 1918: Two Royal Navy submarines and a hundred lives were lost in a series of accidental collisions on a misty Scottish night. It also resulted in damage to five British warships.
35. 31st Jan 1919: The Battle of George Square takes place in Glasgow, Scotland. Fearing a Bolshevik uprising, troops were deployed against protesters.
36. 31st Jan 1920: Phi, Beta Sigma Fraternity was incorporated at Howard University.
37. 31st Jan 1920: The first Ukrainian daily newspaper in the U.S. begins its publication on this day.
38. 31st Jan 1925: Premier Ahmed Zogu becomes on this day President of Angola.
39. 31st Jan 1927: International allied military command in Germany was disbanded on this day.
40. 31st Jan 1928: The 3-M Company was the first to market scotch tape.
41. 31st Jan 1929: Russian Revolutionary Leon Trotsky was on this day expelled from Russia to Turkey.
42. 31st Jan 1930: The first US glider from a dirigible, Lakehurst in New Jersey.
43. 31st Jan 1931: “Tomorrow & Tomorrow” by Philip Barry premieres in New York City.
44. 31st Jan 1932: US railway unions on this day accepted a 10% wage reduction.
45. 31st Jan 1933: The French government of Daladier assumes charge.
46. 31st Jan 1933: Hitler promises parliamentary democracy in Germany.
47. 31st Jan 1934: Devaluation of the US dollar: President Roosevelt devalues US dollar in relation to gold at $35 per ounce of gold.
48. 31st Jan 1940: 40 U-boats were sunk during the month.
49. 31st Jan 1941: 21 U-boats were sunk during this month.
50. 31st Jan 1941: Anti-German demonstrations were held on this day in Haarlem, Netherlands.
51. 31st Jan 1942: 62 U-boats were sunk during this month.
52. 31st Jan 1943: General Friedrich von Paul surrenders to Russian troops at Stalingrad.
53. 31st Jan 1944: On this day the US forces invaded Kwajalein Atoll.
54. 31st Jan 1944: Operation Overload (D-Day) was postponed until June.
55. 31st Jan 1945: The 4th Infantry division of the U.S. occupies Elcherrath.
56. 31st Jan 1946: Yugoslavia becomes a federal republic by adopting a new Constitution.
57. 31st Jan 1948: The magnetic tape recorder was developed by Wireway.
58. 31st Jan 1950: President Truman approves the building of the Hydrogen bomb.
59. 31st Jan 1952: Dutch Lutheran Church reunites after over a century.
60. 31st Jan 1953: “Princess Victoria” capsized in Stranraer in Scotland killing 133 people.
61. 31st Jan 1955: The first music synthesizer was demonstrated by RCA on this day.
62. 31st Jan 1956: Juscelino Kubitschek becomes the president of Brazil on this day.
63. 31st Jan 1956: Guy Mollet becomes the Prime Minister of France and forms a government.
64. 31st Jan 1957: Trans-Iranian oil pipeline was finished on this day.
65. 31st Jan 1958: The first artificial satellite “Explorer 1” was launched by the U.S.
66. 31st Jan 1958: A radiation belt was discovered by James van Allen.
67. 31st Jan 1961: The U.S. Air Force launches Samos spy satellite to replace U-2 flights.
68. 31st Jan 1961: West Indian batsman Rohan Kanhai scores a century in each innings against Australia in Adelaide.
69. 31st Jan 1961: David Ben-Gurion resigns as Prime Minister of Israel on this day.
70. 31st Jan 1961: Six Americans were sentenced to 30 years in prison on charges of bringing arms to anti-Castro guerrillas.
71. 31st Jan 1962: USAF general Charles P Cabell ends his term as deputy chief of CIA.
72. 31st Jan 1962: Samuel Gravely assumes command of destroyer escorts “USS Falgout”.
73. 31st Jan 1964: The US report “Smoking and Health” connects smoking to lung cancer.
74. 31st Jan 1966: Two striking mine workers were killed by the Belgian state police.
75. 31st Jan 1968: Nauru, formerly known as Pleasant Island, declares independence from Australia.
76. 31st Jan 1968: The United States performed a nuclear test on this day at the Nevada Test Site.
77. 31st Jan 1971: Apollo 14 was launched, making the first landing on the lunar highlands.
78. 31st Jan 1972: Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev became the eleventh King of Nepal on this day.
79. 31st Jan 1972: The civilian government in Ghana was ousted by a military coup.
80. 31st Jan 1977: Frenchman Francois Claustre was freed on this day after being held hostage for 33 months in Chad.
81. 31st Jan 1978: Israel converts three military outposts in the West Bank into civilian settlements.
82. 31st Jan 1980: Police on this day storm occupied the Spanish embassy in Guatemala City. 41 people were killed in the operation.
83. 31st Jan 1983: The seatbelt law comes into force on this day in the UK. It means the driver and front seat passengers must wear seat belts at all times. The law was aimed at saving about 1000 lives per year.
84. 31st Jan 1990: On this day the first McDonald’s restaurant was opened in the city of Moscow in Russia. The restaurant had served 30,000 people on the first day.
85. 31st Jan 1995: Following the devaluation of the Mexican to an all-time low, President Bill Clinton exercised his executive powers and authorized the Treasury Department to issue a $20 billion loan through the Exchange Stabilization fund.
86. 31st Jan 1996: Suicide bombing by Tamil Tigers by crashing a truck loaded with explosives into the central bank in Colombo, Sri Lanka, killed at least fifty people.
87. 31st Jan 1998: Spacecraft STS 89, Endeavour 12 lands on this day.
21st Century – January 31 This Day In History – The 2000s
88. 31st Jan 2000: Flight 261 MD-83 of Alaska Airlines experienced stabilizer problems and crashed into the Pacific Ocean on the coast of Point Mugu, California. All 88 aboard were killed in the crash.
89. 31st Jan 2000: Family General Practitioner Dr. Harold Shipman was sentenced to life imprisonment for murdering 15 of his patients, making him Britain’s most prolific serial killer.
90. 31st Jan 2001: A Scottish court in the Netherlands convicts a Libyan and acquits another for their part in the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 which crashed into Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988.
91. 31st Jan 2003: The driver of an intercity train leaving the waterfall station suffered a heart attack and the train approached a curve at a much higher speed than specified resulting in derailment, overturning, and crash into the rocky walls of a gorge.
92. 31st Jan 2004: Security concerns caused the cancellation of six U.S.-bound flights from England, Scotland and France.
93. 31st Jan 2006: Alan Greenspan retires as Chairman of the Federal Reserve. Ben Bernanke was approved as chairman to succeed him.
94. 31st Jan 2007: Suspects who were accused of plotting the kidnap, holding, and beheading of a serving Muslim British soldier in Iraq were arrested in Birmingham in the U.K.
95. 31st Jan 2008: A break in submerged cable systems in the Mediterranean resulted in India losing 60% of internet access and international telephone service. This affected a large number of call centers.
96. 31st Jan 2009: An oil spill ignition in Molo, Kenya killed at least 113 people and injured 200.
97. 31st Jan 2011: The Parliament in Burma met for the first time in over twenty years after the election in 2010. This marked the end of 50 years of military rule in Burma.
98. 31st Jan 2012: A bout of freezing weather hit Eastern Europe and countries like Poland, Ukraine, Serbia and Bulgaria. Several people died and hundreds of people were treated for Frostbite.
99. 31st Jan 2013: Two commuter trains crashed near Pretoria, South Africa. Three hundred people were injured.
100. 31st Jan 2015: Sergio Mattarella was elected President of Italy on this day.
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