What Happened on May 31

Significant Events

  • 1279 BC Ramesses II, also known as Ramesses the Great becomes Pharaoh of Ancient Egypt (19th Dynasty)
  • 1578 Martin Frobisher sails from Harwich, England, to Frobisher Bay, Canada. Eventually mines fools gold, famously used to pave the streets of London.
  • 1910 Union of South Africa declares its independence from the United Kingdom
  • 1916 Battle of Jutland: Largest naval battle of World War I between the British Grand Fleet and the German High Seas Fleet which killed 8,645 in an inconclusive battle but strategic British victory. The German fleet never put to sea again.
  • 1935 7.7 magnitude earthquake hits Quetta in Balochistan, British Raj (Pakistan) killing an estimated 50,000 people
  • 1947 Communists seize power in Hungary
  • 2008 Usain Bolt breaks the world record in the 100m sprint, with a wind-legal (+1.7m/s) 9.72 seconds
More Historical Events

Did You Know?

Citing poor eyesight, English civil servant Samuel Pepys records the last event in his famous diary

On May 31, 1669

Famous Weddings

  • 1889 Pianist Ignacy Jan Paderewski (38) weds baroness Helena Maria Rosen
  • 1919 1st wedding held in an aircraft (over Houston, Texas)
  • 1991 Oldest bride - Minnie Munro, 102, weds Dudley Reid, 83, in Australia
  • 1998 Beastie Boys rapper Adam Yauch (33) weds daughter of prominent Tibetan activists Dechen Wangdu in New York
  • 2002 "NYPD Blue" actress Sharon Lawrence (30) weds doctor Thomas Apostle at Saint Sophia Cathedral in Los Angeles

Famous Divorces

  • 1949 Actress Doris Day (27) divorces saxophonist George Weidler (23) after 3 years of marriage
  • 2007 Actress Billie Piper and radio DJ Chris Evans divorce after 6 years of marriage
More Weddings & Divorces