On This Day in History: April 15

Today in history, the Titanic sunk in the early hours of the morning. Here is a look at April 15 in history.

1534: Thomas Cromwell Is Named Henry VIII’s Chief Secretary

Thomas Cromwell’s actions pre-1533 are largely unknown and undocumented. It leaves much to the imagination of the historians. However, this day in history is the day given as when Thomas Cromwell became Henry VIII’s Chief Secretary, likely for his actions in aiding the divorce of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon. From this point, heThomas Cromwell made plenty of notes about meetings and the events at court. He surrounded himself with people he could trust, putting him in a position of major power that would lead to his position as Lord Privy Seal. However, his rise from a low birth would end disastrously, when the people around him blamed him for various shortcomings and Henry VIII had him executed in 1540.

1865: The Death of President Lincoln

After being shot the night before, President Abraham Lincoln was officially declared dead at 7:22am on this day in history. The president had not been instantly killed from the gunshot John Wilkes Booth carried out. He was left paralyzed and struggling to breath when Dr. Charles Leale rushed up to his booth. He was taken to the house across the street and placed on a bed, until a surgeon general arrived. Unfortunately, he could not be saved. Vice President Andrew Johnson remained by his bedside until his death.

1912: RMS Titanic Sinks

After hitting an iceberg the night before, the Titanic sunk today in history. One of the survivors was Molly Brown, who became Molly Brownknown as “the unsinkable Molly Brown.” Not long after her marriage to James J. Brown, he had found a profitable gold deposit and the family became rich overnight. However, her flamboyant personality led to the couple separating, but she did benefit financially for the divorce and used the money to travel the world. Brown had taken command of the lifeboat she had been in, helping to rescue some of the other victims from that fateful night. Her personality also helped to keep the spirits of other survivors up.

1945: Bergen-Belsen Liberated

On April 15, 1945, concentration camp Bergen-Belsen was finally liberated by the British forces. It was the first concentration camp to be liberated during the Second World War, and troops were shocked to find piles of rotting corpses and dead bodies. The surviving prisoners were starving and sick, with many suffering from typhoid, TB and typhus. In fact, the only reason the Germans agreed to surrender this camp was due to the disease in the place. Most of the prisoners were women and children, adding to the shock for the soldiers and later the public when they learned of the conditions.

Famous Birthdays on April 15

Painter and sculptor Leonardo da Vinci—1452

Sikhism founder Guru Nanak–1469

Physician, Robert Sibbald–1641

Empress Catherine I of Russia—1684

Portrait painter Charles Wilson Peale—1741

First to use anesthesia during childbirth, Walter Channing–1786

Magnetic North Pole founder Sir James Clark Ross—1800

Historian, John Lothrop Motley–1814

Civil rights advocate and labor leader Asa Phillip Randolph—1889

Blues singer Bessie Smith—1898

North Korean leader Kim Il-Sung—1912

Harry Potter actress Emma Watson—1990

Game of Thrones actress Maisie Williams—1997


Birthdays from HistoryNet.com, OnThisDay.com and FamousBirthdays.com

Featured image from Deposit Photos

Thomas Cromwell: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Cromwell#/media/File:Cromwell,Thomas(1EEssex)01.jpg

Molly Brown: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Brown#/media/File:Margaret_Brown,_3qtr_view,_with_chair.jpg

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