Historic anniversaries in April 2012

You might like to write about the following historic anniversaries. Dates are given 6 months in advance to allow you time for research and writing.

The list presented here is just a fraction of that available in The Date-A-Base Book 2012. For example, there are 60 anniversaries listed below, but 216 anniversaries for the same month in the book, which covers the whole of 2012. (See the end of this list for more details.)

We have painstakingly cross-checked every entry, but you are advised to check all facts again as part of your research. Please let us know of any errors you find.

500 years ago (10 Apr 1512)
Birth of King James V of Scotland

400 years ago (11 Apr 1612)
Death of Edward Wightman, English Baptist preacher, the last person in England to be burned at the stake for heresy

200 years ago (20 Apr 1812)
Death of George Clinton, Vice President of the United States (1805–12), one of the Founding Fathers of the United States

200 years ago (30 Apr 1812)
Louisiana became the 18th U.S. state

150 years ago (16 Apr 1862)
U.S. President Abraham Lincoln abolished slavery in the District of Columbia

100 years ago (5 Apr 1912)
Birth of John Le Mesurier, award-winning British film and television actor, best known as Sergeant Wilson in the comedy series ‘Dad’s Army’

100 years ago (12 Apr 1912)
Death of Clara Barton, American teacher, nurse and humanitarian who founded the American Red Cross

100 years ago (15 Apr 1912)
The British liner ‘RMS Titanic’ sank in the Atlantic after hitting an iceberg on her maiden voyage to New York. More than 1,500 people were killed

100 years ago (15 Apr 1912)
Birth of Kim Il-sung, communist leader of North Korea (1948–94)

100 years ago (16 Apr 1912)
American aviator Harriet Quimby became the first woman to fly a plane across the English Channel

100 years ago (20 Apr 1912)
Two notable U.S. baseball stadiums opened on this day: Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts, and Navin Field (later Tiger Stadium) in Detroit, Michigan (demolished 2008-9)

100 years ago (20 Apr 1912)
Death of Bram Stoker, Irish novelist and short story writer, best known for his novel ‘Dracula’

100 years ago (21 Apr 1912)
Birth of Marcel Camus, award-winning French film director

100 years ago (22 Apr 1912)
‘Pravda’, the official newspaper of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, was first published. (Ceased publication 1996)

90 years ago (3 Apr 1922)
Joseph Stalin was elected as the first General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union

80 years ago (10 Apr 1932)
In the German presidential election Paul von Hindenburg was elected for a second term, defeating Adolf Hitler. Hindenburg had intended retiring, but was persuaded to stand as the only person who could defeat Hitler

75 years ago (17 Apr 1937)
Daffy Duck made his debut appearance in the Warner Brothers’ cartoon ‘Porky’s Duck Hunt’

75 years ago (26 Apr 1937)
Spanish Civil War: German planes bombed the Basque town of Guernica

75 years ago (28 Apr 1937)
Birth of Saddam Hussein, President of Iraq (1979-2003). (Executed 2006)

70 years ago (9 Apr 1942)
World War II: the Bataan Death March. The Japanese forced 75,000 captured Philippines and American troops to march for 6 days without food or water to a prisoner of war camp. Thousands died

70 years ago (15 Apr 1942)
World War II: Britain awarded the George Cross to the island of Malta in recognition of the bravery of its people

60 years ago (21 Apr 1952)
Death of Sir (Richard) Stafford Cripps, British politician, Chancellor of the Exchequer (1947-50), known for his harsh policies which rescued the country from economic crisis

60 years ago (28 Apr 1952)
World War II: the war between the Allied Powers and Japan officially ended as the Treaty of Peace with Japan (also known as the Treaty of San Francisco) went into effect. The Republic of China signed a separate treaty with Japan (the Treaty of Taipei) on this day

60 years ago (30 Apr 1952)
The diary of Anne Frank – a Jewish girl who died during the Holocaust – was published in English as ‘The Diary of a Young Girl’

50 years ago (10 Apr 1962)
Death of Stuart Sutcliffe, British bass guitarist (The Beatles)

50 years ago (21 Apr 1962)
The Seattle World’s Fair (Century 21 Exposition) opened in Seattle, Washington, USA. (The Space Needle tower was constructed for this fair)

50 years ago (26 Apr 1962)
Ranger 4 became the first U.S. space probe to land on the Moon, crashing on the far side

40 years ago (4 Apr 1972)
U.S. President Richard Nixon authorised the bombing of North Vietnam in response to the Easter Offensive, sparking protests across the USA

40 years ago (10 Apr 1972)
The Biological Weapons Convention was signed in London, Washington, D.C. and Moscow. It banned the use, development, manufacture, sale or transfer, and stockpiling of biological weapons. (Effective from Mar 1975)

40 years ago (16 Apr 1972)
NASA launched Apollo 16 to the Moon. This was the first manned landing in the lunar highlands, though the landing was nearly aborted after an engine crisis

40 years ago (22 Apr 1972)
British rowers John Fairfax and Sylvia Cook became the first people to row across the Pacific Ocean. (They took 361 days)

30 years ago (2 Apr 1982)
The Falklands War began. Argentina invaded the Falkland Islands

30 years ago (15 Apr 1982)
Death of Arthur Lowe, award-winning British actor, best known as Captain Mainwaring in the popular comedy series ‘Dad’s Army’

30 years ago (17 Apr 1982)
Queen Elizabeth II signed the Canada Act into law, severing Canada’s last ties with Britain and making it wholly independent

30 years ago (25 Apr 1982)
Israel withdrew its troops from the Sinai Peninsula, as agreed under the Camp David Accords of 1978

30 years ago (25 Apr 1982)
Death of Celia Johnson, British stage, film and television actress (‘Brief Encounter’, ‘The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie’, and many other roles)

25 years ago (1 Apr 1987)
U.S. President Ronald Reagan declared AIDS ‘public health enemy No. 1’

25 years ago (2 Apr 1987)
Death of Buddy Rich, American jazz drummer and bandleader, considered the greatest jazz drummer of all time

25 years ago (3 Apr 1987)
The late Duchess of Windsor’s jewellery was sold at an auction in Geneva, Switzerland for £31 million ($50m) – six times the expected figure

25 years ago (5 Apr 1987)
Fox Broadcasting Company launched its first prime-time TV schedule

25 years ago (19 Apr 1987)
‘The Simpsons’ was first broadcast as a cartoon short on ‘The Tracey Ullman Show’ in the USA

20 years ago (2 Apr 1992)
American Mafia boss John Gotti was convicted of 13 counts of murder, racketeering and obstruction of justice. (On 23rd June he was sentenced to life imprisonment)

20 years ago (5 Apr 1992)
Balkan conflict – the Siege of Sarajevo, Bosnia began. (Ended Feb 1996)

20 years ago (5 Apr 1992)
Death of Sam Walton, American retail executive, founder of Wal-Mart – the biggest retail sales chain in the USA

20 years ago (6 Apr 1992)
Death of Isaac Asimov, prolific Russian-born American writer and biochemist, known for his hugely successful science fiction stories and popular science books

20 years ago (9 Apr 1992)
Former Panamanian leader Manuel Noriega was convicted of drug trafficking, racketeering and money laundering at a court in Miami, Florida, USA. (Sentenced to 40 years in prison – later reduced to 30)

20 years ago (12 Apr 1992)
Disneyland Paris (also known as Euro Disney) opened in France

20 years ago (16 Apr 1992)
The President of Afghanistan, Mohammad Najibullah, was forced to resign as his regime collapsed. (He was briefly replaced by acting president Abdul Rahim Hatef until 28th when Islamic rebels seized power)

20 years ago (23 Apr 1992)
The world’s largest McDonald’s fast-food restaurant opened in Beijing, China

20 years ago (27 Apr 1992)
Betty Boothroyd became the first woman Speaker of Britain’s House of Commons

20 years ago (29 Apr 1992)
Los Angeles riots, USA. A jury acquitted four police officers of the (videotaped) beating of African-American motorist Rodney King, sparking six days of riots in which 53 people were killed

10 years ago (1 Apr 2002)
The Netherlands legalised euthanasia

10 years ago (11 Apr 2002)
American congressman James Traficant was convicted of bribery, racketeering and corruption

10 years ago (15 Apr 2002)
Death of Damon Knight, American science fiction writer, editor and critic, founder of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA)

10 years ago (16 Apr 2002)
Death of Robert Urich, American actor, best known for his starring roles in the TV series ‘Vega$’ and ‘Spenser: For Hire’

10 years ago (16 Apr 2002)
Death of Ruth Fertel, American entrepreneur, founder of Ruth’s Chris Steak Houses

10 years ago (18 Apr 2002)
American actor Robert Blake was arrested for the murder of his wife Bonny Lee Bakley in May 2001. (He was acquitted in March 2005 but found liable in a civil case in November 2005)

10 years ago (18 Apr 2002)
Death of Thor Heyerdahl, Norwegian explorer and adventurer, best known for the ‘Kon-Tiki’ and ‘Ra’ expeditions which were intended to prove that earlier civilisations could have crossed the oceans

10 years ago (25 Apr 2002)
Death of Lisa ‘Left Eye’ Lopes, American rapper, singer and songwriter, member of TLC

10 years ago (27 Apr 2002)
Death of Ruth Handler, American businesswoman, co-founder of the Mattel toy company, creator of the Barbie doll


The Date-A-Base Book 2012

You’ll find lots more anniversaries in The Date-A-Base Book 2012, which covers the whole of 2012 and lists over 2,250 forthcoming newsworthy and notable anniversaries – more than three times as many entries each month than our standard list above. You’ll find out about  hundreds of fascinating anniversaries that other writers don’t even know about – giving you a huge advantage!

The Date-A-Base Book 2012 is a terrific source of ideas for writers, journalists, film-makers, editors, researchers, producers, teachers, students, speakers and event planners.

ebook version (PDF): £6.99 (approx $11)
printed version : £8.99 (approx $14) + delivery

Click here for more details (You’ll also be able to see the complete chapter for January 2012 – all 207 entries!)


Become a lifetime member of ideas4writers today for just £49.95 and you’ll receive The Date-A-Base Book 2012 (plus all future editions) as well as The Fastest Way to Write Your BookThe Fastest Way to Get Ideas, our complete 5,000+ collection of writing ideas, unlimited use of our forums and writing software, and much more (total value: over £150!)
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2 Responses to “Historic anniversaries in April 2012”

  1. Every Day Inspirations | Every Day Poets Says:

    […] Here are a few more anniversaries: https://ideas4writers.wordpress.com/2011/10/16/historic-anniversaries-in-april-2012/ […]

  2. sterlingsop Says:

    Thank you for this post. I am looking for ideas for my entries in the A-Z April Challenge and I will be using one or two of the events you described in this post. Thank you :)

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