On This Day in History: April 30

Today in history, the downfall of Anne Boleyn officially started with the arrest of a man who would confess to adultery with her. Here’s a look at the birthdays and history from April 30.

1536: Mark Smeaton Arrested

Today in history, Mark Smeaton was arrested by Thomas Cromwell. He would be questioned over money he used toAnne Boleyn buy horses, which was questionable considering his position as a musician. That money was likely gifted to him by Henry VIII of England, but Cromwell used it as a way to bring down Anne Boleyn and her faction. It’s unknown whether he was tortured or not, but he did confess to sleeping with Queen Anne. This was enough to find him and Anne guilty, but Cromwell didn’t stop there!

1927: Opening of the First Women’s Federal Prison

Alderson, West Virginia saw the first federal women’s prison. Women who were serving more than one year were taken to the institution, which was run by Dr. Mary B. Harris. The buildings were named after social reformers and considered a “fashionable boarding school” by one judge. Officials wanted to rehabilitate the female offenders, teaching them how to farm land and perform office tasks. Most of the women initially imprisoned were there for drink and drug offences charged during the Prohibition Era.

1945: Suicide of Adolf Hitler

While hiding in his Berlin bunker with his lover Eva Braun, Adolf Hitler made the decision to kill himself. He took a cyanide capsule before shooting himself. He had been in the bunker since January 1945, after realising that his dreams of the “1000-year Reich” were coming to an end. While there, he continued to give orders and married Braun on April 28, 1945. The two were later quickly cremated, but Hitler’s ashes were then moved by Soviet forces regularly to avoid a memorial set up. Eight days after Hitler’s suicide, German would surrender unconditionally and World War II would come to an end.

1997: ‘Ellen’ Airs ‘Coming Out’ Episode

Mary IIThe first ever prime-time sitcom to have an open lesbian character aired the “coming out” episode on this day in history. Ellen DeGeneres played bookstore owner Ellen Morgan on Ellen. For a while fans had believed the character was gay and ABC supported the hype around the storyline. DeGeneres also came out on national television a week earlier. Forty-two million people tune in for the hour-long episode. Unfortunately, the ratings would fall for the rest of 1997 and Ellen was cancelled.

Famous Birthdays on April 30

King Philip III of France—1245

Louise de Lorraine-Vaudémont, queen of France—1553

Queen Mary II of England—1662

Mathematician Carl Friedrich Gauss—1777

First Lady Mary Scott Lord Dimmick—1858

Queen Juliana of the Netherlands—1909

Pilgram at Tinker Creek author Annie Dillard—1945

Prime Minister of Canada Stephen Harper—1959

NBA Forward Isiah Thomas—1961

The Big Bang Theory actor Johnny Galecki—1975

Interview with a Vampire actress Kirsten Dunst—1982

Glee actress Dianna Agron—1986

Sources:

Birthdays from HistoryNet.com and OnThisDay.com

Featured image from Deposit Photos

Images from:

Anne Boleyn: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Anne_boleyn.jpg

Mary II of England: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_II_of_England#/media/File:Mary_II_-_Kneller_1690.jpg


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