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1865 – Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom signs the papers to institute the Victoria Cross, a military medal for valor during Crimean War. It is now the highest military decoration that can be given. It has been awarded 1,356 times since its inception.

1891 – Liliʻuokalani is proclaimed to be Queen of Hawaii. She was the island’s first Queen regnant but would also be its last. She was succeeding her brother, Kalākaua. Two years later, she would be overthrown in favour of annexation to the United States.

1584 – Frederick Henry, Prince of Orange is born in Delft as the youngest son to William the Silent. His father died when he was only 6 months old, so his brother, Maurice was his trainer in the arts of arms and goverment. He would succeed his brother as ruler and Stadtholder in 1625 and prove to be as successful a general as his brother, and more successful as a politician.

1749 – The future King Christian VII of Denmark and Norway is born to Frederick V and Louise of Great Britian. He was a grandson of George II of Great Britain and married his cousin, Caroline of Wales. In his teens, his mental illness became apparent, and both Caroline and his doctor, Johann Struensee acted as de facto regents, until Christian’s mother, Juliana stepped in. Struensee was executed and Caroline divorced and exiled. Christian’s regents were then his mother, and later his brother, until his death and the succession of his son.

1676 – Alexis I of Russia dies in Moscow at age 46. His rule was eventful, with Russia expanding to over 2 billion acres in his 20 year reign. Three of his sons would go on to be Tsar, with the youngest being Peter I, or Peter the Great.

1696 – Alexis’ other son, Peter’s older brother, and one time Co-Tsar, Ivan V of Russia also died today in Moscow. He was only 29. He was said to have numerous mental and physical handicaps. His role as Tsar was largely ceremonial, most of the power lied with his regents, and later his brother, Peter.

1820 – King George III of the United Kingdom died at 81. Known to history as “Mad King George” he had been living away from the cities and rule fell with his son, the future George IV, as Prince Regent. He had been quite popular with the people for his down to earth nature and his interest in agriculture earned him the nickname “Farmer George.” He was also King during the American Revolution and has earned the legacy as a tyrant for his role in that time era.

1901 – King Milan I of Serbia died in Vienna at age 46. He had sudden abdicated in 1889 with little reason given, in favour of his son, Alexander I. He had left the country after his abdication, but returned to offer guidance and military advice to his young son. However he would be exiled again in 1900, after his opposition to Alexander’s bethrothal to a commoner named Draga Masin.

1906 – Christian IX of Denmark died at age 87 in Copenhagen. He was known as the “Father in Law” of Europe for the dynastic marriages he made for his daughters, with one eventually becoming Queen of England, and another Empress of Russia, and his second son, George, becoming the Greek King of the Hellenes. Most current monarchs of Europe descend from him, including Queen Elizabeth II, Albert II of Belgium, Harald V of Norway, Margrethe II of Denmark, and the Grand Duke of Luxembourg, Henri.

Have an awesome day!!!