On This Day in History: April 29

A royal couple married on April 29, with their wedding watched on TV by hundreds of thousands. What happened on this day in history?

1429: Joan of Arc Saves Orleans from the English

Joan of ArcFrance and England had been at war for decades. It was during the Hundred Year’s War that Joan of Arc began leading the French troops, saying that she was sent by God. One of her biggest successes was relieving Orleans from the English, and this happened today in history. The English didn’t retreat until May 8, but it was still a major victory for the French.

1945: The Liberation of Dachau Concentration Camp

The Nazi’s first concentration camp, Dachau, was liberated by the U.S. Army on this day in history. Those held at Dachau were forced to build the extensions, while the camp was also the training ground for new SS soldiers. Thousands were either executed or died due to the forced labour and poor conditions. Many others were later sent to other concentration camps and faced other horrors of the Nazi regime. On April 27, 1945, the prisoners were forced to march south, with the SS guards fleeing the next day. The U.S. Army found thousands of dead bodies along the road to the camp, along with 30,000 survivors.

1986: The Funeral of Wallis Simpson

American Wallis Simpson had been well-known for her marriage to the abdicated King Edward VIII of Britain. It was because of his intention to marry her that he had to abdicate. On April 29, she was laid to rest next to her husband, but it was a very simple ceremony. The royal family and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher did attend, but Wallis Simpsonthere was no funeral address. She was buried at Windsor in a simple coffin, with a plate that said “Wallis, Duchess of Windsor, 1896-1986.”

2011: Prince William and Kate Middleton Marry

After years of speculation that it would never happen, Prince William and Kate Middleton finally married. Their wedding had been hugely reported on beforehand, and people around the world flocked to St. Paul’s Cathedral to get a glimpse of the royal couple. It was watched by millions around the world, televised live and then constantly repeated throughout the day.

Famous Birthdays on April 29

Writer John Arbuthnot–1667

Peregrine Bertie, 2nd Duke of Ancaster and Kesteven–1686

U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Oliver Ellsworth—1745

British adventurer James Brooke–1803

Tsar Alexander II of Russia—1818

San Francisco Examiner publisher William Randolph Hearst–1863

Cartoonist Tad Dorgan—1877

London Philharmonic founder Sir Thomas Beecham—1879

World War II Japanese emperor Hirohito—1901

Country singer Willie Nelson—1933

Race car driver Dale Earnhardt—1951

Kill Bill actress Uma Thurman—1970

Violinist Jasper Wood–1974

Spanish TV host, Rocío Carrasco–1977

Princess Maud Behn of Norway–2003

Infanta Sofía of Spain–2007

Sources:

Birthdays from HistoryNet.com and FamousBirthdays.com

Featured image from Deposit Photos

Joan of Arc: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joan_of_Arc#/media/File:Joan_of_arc_miniature_graded.jpg

Wallis Simpson: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wallis_Simpson#/media/File:Wallis_Simpson_-1936.JPG


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