On This Day in History: April 13

On April 13, Apollo 13 suffered a disastrous failure while in space. Here is a look at events and birthdays on this day in history.

1360: The Death of English Troops by Hail

On April 13, 1360, England suffered from 1,000 soldiers being killed by hail in Chartres, France. It was while Edward of EnglandEngland and France were at war with each other during The Hundred Years’ War, which had began in 1337. The year before King Edward III of England started making an effort to conquer France, but the French decided to remain behind protective wars while English soldiers pillaged villages. The hail was viewed as a sign from God and led to Edward negotiating a peace treaty with the French.

1534: Thomas More Refuses to Take the Oath of Succession

On this day in history, Thomas More basically signed his own death warrant. After being summoned to the English court to sign England’s new Oath of Succession, he refused. He would agree to parts of it, but not to the part that would view King Henry VIII as the Supreme Head of the Church. As a staunch Catholic, he believed that he would damn his soul to save his body if he did. However, he promised not to speak publicly about his Catholic views. It wasn’t enough for the court or for Henry VIII and he was later arrested and executed for his refusal.

1918: Helsinki Falls to the Germans

During the First World War, Helsinki fell into German hands. It was part of the German support for the Finnish, and took the country out of Russian control. Finland had used the uncertainty n Russia in 1917 as a chance to declare independence, but Bolshevik supporters caused conflict and Germany stepped in to help. The Red Guard was abolished from Finland and Finland eventually recognized a German prince as monarch; albeit temporarily.

1970: Apollo 13 Disaster

Just days after setting off into space, Apollo 13 suffered a disaster. Oxygen tank no 2 exploded, forcing the astronautsCatherine de Medici to return to Earth and focus on getting home alive. The tank explosion had caused a disruption with the oxygen, light, electricity and water supplies. Before Apollo 13 could return home, it needed to circle the moon and then land in the Pacific Ocean with the world watching anxiously.

Famous Birthdays on April 13

Jesuit theologian Peter Faber,–1506

Catherine de’ Medici, Queen of France–1519

Elisabeth of Valois (Catherine de’ Medici’s daughter with Henri II of France)–1547

English Catholic traitor Guy Fawkes–1570

Christina of Holstein-Gottorp, Queen of Sweden–1573

Articles of Confederation first president John Hanson—1721

British prime minister Frederick Lord North—1732

U.S. president Thomas Jefferson—1743

Butch Cassidy—1866

Scrabble inventor Alfred Butts—1899

Delta Wedding author Eudora Welty—1909

Room at the Top author John Gerard Braine—1922

Sons of Anarchy actor Ron Perlman—1950

Doctor Who actor Peter Davidson—1951

Never Ending Story II actor Jonathan Brandis—1976

Welsh rugby player George North—1992


Birthdays from HistoryNet.com and FamousBirthdays.com

Featured image from Deposit Photos

Edward III of England: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_III_of_England#/media/File:King_Edward_III_from_NPG.jpg

Catherine de’ Medici: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catherine_de%27_Medici#/media/File:Catherine-de-medici.jpg

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