HISTORY TODAY

History today

-1759 – An earthquake hits the Mediterranean destroying Beirut and Damascus and killing 30,000–40,000.
– 1839 – A cyclone slams into south-eastern India, with high winds and a 12-metre (40 ft) storm surge destroying the port city of Coringa (which has never been completely rebuilt). The storm wave swept inland, taking with it 20,000 ships and thousands of people. An estimated 300,000 deaths resulted from the disaster.
– 1947 – Red Scare: The “Hollywood Ten” are blacklisted by Hollywood movie studios.
– 1952 – Agatha Christie’s murder-mystery play The Mousetrap opens at the Ambassadors Theatre in London. It will become the longest continuously-running play in history.
– 1984 – Thirty-six top musicians gather in a Notting Hill studio and record Band Aid’s “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” in order to raise money for famine relief in Ethiopia.
– 1987 – Typhoon Nina pummels the Philippines with category 5 winds of 165 mph and a surge that destroys entire villages. At least 1,036 deaths are attributed to the storm.
– 2008 – Cyclone Nisha strikes northern Sri Lanka, killing 15 people and displacing 90,000 others while dealing the region the highest rainfall in nine decades.
– 2009 – Jeddah floods: Freak rains swamp the city of Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, during an ongoing Hajj pilgrimage. Three thousand cars are swept away and 122 people perish in the torrents, with 350 others missing.