Today in History for April 9

You never know what you’ll find when you dig deep into the history books.

Here are just a few of the happenings on this date in history…

  • In 1870, German archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann began excavations in Turkey, where he found the ruins of the ancient city of Troy.
  • In 1917, four Canadian divisions began an assault on Vimy Ridge in northeast France. British and French troops had been unsuccessful in earlier attempts to capture the ridge, a key German defensive position. By April 14, the Canadians had won the battle, earning them recognition as an elite force among the Allies and Germans. Almost 3,600 Canadians were killed in the fighting.
  • In 1959, U.S. space agency NASA named the seven astronauts for the Mercury space missions — Scott Carpenter, Gordon Cooper, John Glenn, Gus Grissom, Wally Schirra, Alan Shepard and Donald Slayton.
  • In 1965, the Houston Astrodome, the world’s first domed stadium, opened.
  • In 1969, the British-French supersonic aircraft Concorde made its first test flight from Bristol to Fairford, Gloucestershire, U.K. The flight lasted 22 minutes.
  • In 1983, the space shuttle Challenger ended its first mission with a safe landing at Edwards Air Force Base
  • In 1987, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled the constitution does not guarantee the right to strike.
  • In 1990, the major league baseball season opened a week late because of a labour dispute.
  • In 2002, an estimated one million people lined the streets of London to bid a final farewell to the Queen Mother, who died 10 days earlier at age 101. Following her funeral at Westminster Abbey, the mother of Queen Elizabeth was interred at Windsor Castle, just west of London.
  • In 2003, U.S. tanks and troops poured into the heart of Baghdad as Iraqi President Saddam Hussein’s government collapsed under a blistering three-week onslaught. U.S. forces met little Iraqi resistance as they took over swathes of the city. Iraqis cheered as Saddam Hussein’s 12-metre statue in Baghdad’s Firdos Square was toppled.
  • In 2005, Prince Charles married long-time love Camilla Parker Bowles in a civil ceremony at Windsor’s Guildhall attended by their children, siblings and other family members — but not Charles’ mother, Queen Elizabeth.
  • In 2007, Queen Elizabeth rededicated the restored Vimy Memorial in France, commemorating Canada’s most famous battle of the First World War, at a ceremony attended by more than 20,000 people, including Prime Minister Stephen Harper and French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin.
  • In 2017, at the Masters, Sergio Garcia overcame a late round two-shot deficit against Justin Rose and birdied the first hole of a sudden-death playoff to capture his first career major, ending an 18-year drought.
  • In 2018, U.S. federal agents with search warrants raided the office of U.S. President Donald Trump’s personal attorney Michael Cohen, seizing records on topics including a $130,000 payment made to Stormy Daniels.