Historical Events on July 17
- 1717: When Water Music is premiered by George Frideric Handel, King George I goes down the Thames River on a barge with fifty musicians.
- 1762: After Peter III of Russia is murdered, Catherine II becomes Russia’s Tsar.
- 1771: During the Bloody Falls Massacre, a group of Inuit are murdered by Matonabbee – a Chipewyan chief that was serving as a guide to Samuel Hearne on his Arctic expedition.
- 1791: During the French Revolution, the French National Guard led by General Lafayette fires upon a crown of Jacobins at Champ de Mars in Paris, France.
- 1867: The first dental school to be opened in the United States that is affiliated with a university is the Harvard School of Dental Medicine which is established on this date in Boston, Massachusetts.
- 1902: The first air conditioner is created by Willis Carrier in Buffalo, New York on this day.
- 1944: At Port Chicago near San Francisco, California, 2 vessels that were carrying ammunition for the war explode. Over 300 people are killed.
- 1944: During World War 2, Napalm bombs are dropped for the first time on a fuel depot at Coutances, France by American P-38 pilots.
- 1944: During World War 2, Field Marshal Erwin Rommel is strafed by Allied planes at Sainte-Foy-de-Montgommery in Normandy.
- 1945: Harry S. Truman, Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin meet in Potsdam, Germany to determine what is going to happen to defeated Germany.
- 1955: In Anaheim, California, Disneyland is dedicated and opened to the public by Walt Disney.
Famous Birthdays on July 17
- American actor James Cagney is born in 1899.
- American chemist and microbiologist, Frank Olson is born in 1910.
- Canadian-American radio and TV host, Art Linkletter is born in 1912.
- American comedian, actress and voice artist, Phyllis Diller is born in 1917.
- American physicist and inventor of the laser, Gordon Gould is born in 1920.
- German chemist and 8th Chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel is born in 1954.
- American author and scree, J. Michael Straczynski is born in 1954.
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