28 July 1635

In the Eighty Years’ War, the Spanish capture the strategic Dutch fortress of Schenkenschans.

The Eighty Years’ War, also known as the Dutch War of Independence or the Dutch Revolt, was a conflict that lasted from 1568 to 1648, spanning eighty years (hence the name). It primarily took place in the Low Countries, which is modern-day Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg.

The war was triggered by a combination of political, religious, and economic factors. The Low Countries were part of the Spanish Habsburg Empire ruled by King Philip II of Spain. The region was experiencing growing tensions due to Philip’s attempts to centralize power and impose Catholicism, which clashed with the Protestant Reformation gaining popularity in the area. The Dutch people, who were predominantly Protestant, felt oppressed by the Spanish Catholic rule and sought to defend their religious freedom and political autonomy.

Key Events:

1566: The conflict began with the start of the Iconoclastic Fury when Calvinist Protestants in the Low Countries launched a wave of iconoclastic attacks on Catholic churches and religious symbols.
1568: The military phase of the war began when William of Orange, a leading nobleman and supporter of the Dutch cause, raised an army and started a series of military campaigns against Spanish forces.
1579: The Union of Utrecht was formed, which united several northern provinces in the Low Countries and solidified their resolve to fight against Spanish rule.
1581: The Act of Abjuration was issued by the northern provinces, which formally declared their independence from Spanish rule and deposed King Philip II as their ruler.
1609-1621: A Twelve-Year Truce interrupted the war temporarily, during which the northern provinces maintained their de facto independence.
1621-1648: The war resumed in 1621, and it continued until the signing of the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648.

The war finally came to an end with the Peace of Westphalia, which was a series of treaties that marked the conclusion of several major European conflicts, including the Eighty Years’ War. According to the terms of the treaty, the northern provinces of the Low Countries were officially recognized as an independent state known as the Dutch Republic (the Netherlands). The southern provinces remained under Spanish control and would eventually become modern-day Belgium.

The Dutch Republic emerged as a prosperous and influential maritime power in the following centuries, playing a significant role in global trade and exploration during the Age of Exploration and beyond. The war also had broader implications for religious freedom and state sovereignty in Europe, contributing to the principle of state sovereignty and the decline of religious wars.

28 July 1984

The 1984 Summer Olympics officially known as the games of the XXIII were opened in Los Angeles.

The 1984 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XXIII Olympiad, were held in Los Angeles, California, USA. The games are perhaps most known for the impressive performance of the US team, which won a total of 174 medals, including 83 gold medals. This remains the most gold medals won by a single nation at a Summer Olympics. The 1984 Olympics were also notable for being the first to be fully sponsored by private funds, without any government financing. This allowed for the construction of new facilities and infrastructure, which helped to modernize the city of Los Angeles. The 1984 Olympics were also noteworthy for the boycott by the Soviet Union and several other Eastern Bloc countries. This was in response to the US-led boycott of the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow, which was held in protest of the Soviet Union’s invasion of Afghanistan. As a result, many of the top athletes from these countries did not participate in the 1984 Olympics. Finally, the 1984 Olympics were memorable for a number of individual achievements, such as Carl Lewis winning four gold medals in track and field, Mary Lou Retton becoming the first American woman to win the all-around gold medal in gymnastics, and Edwin Moses winning his second gold medal in the 400m hurdles.

28 July 2001

The Australian, Ian Thorpe becomes the first swimmer to win six gold medals at a single World Swimming Championship.

With the 2001 Australian Championships held in Hobart in March, Thorpe added the 800 m freestyle to his repertoire, after FINA had added the event for the 2001 World Aquatics Championships. Thorpe began his campaign by successfully defending his 400 m title with a time just 0.17 s outside his world record. The following night in the 800 m event, he drew away from Hackett in the last 100 m to break Kieren Perkins’ 1994 world record by over four seconds. He earned his third title by cutting 0.66 s from van den Hoogenband’s 200 m world record to set a new mark of 1 min 44.69 s. This performance made him the third male after John Konrads and Tim Shaw to hold world records over three distances simultaneously. His subsequent victory in the 100 m freestyle in a new personal best of 49.05 s made him the first since Konrads in 1959 to hold all Australian freestyle titles from 100 m to 800 m. This indicated that he could swim faster at the subsequent World Championships in Fukuoka, where he was looking to regain the ascendancy from van den Hoogenband.

Thorpe arrived in Fukuoka having been chosen by broadcaster TV Asahi as the marketing drawcard of the event. With the 4 × 100 m freestyle relay being held after the 400 m freestyle on the first night, Thorpe appeared to be conserving energy when he reached the 200 m mark two seconds outside his world record. Although he was 0.93 s behind at the final turn, a final 50 m burst in 24.36 s saw him cut a further 0.42 s from his world record. The relay saw him dive in fractionally ahead of American Jason Lezak after Klim, Callus and Pearson had completed the first three legs. Thorpe fell behind in the early half of the leg before kicking away in the closing stages, to seal gold with his fastest-ever relay split of 47.87 s. In the 800 m final, he shadowed Hackett for the first 750 m, staying within a body length. He then broke clear to win by a body length, lowering his world record by over two seconds. The 200 m freestyle rematch with van den Hoogenband provided Thorpe with a chance to rectify his strategy from the Olympics; this time he allowed the Dutchman to lead through the first 100 m. Thorpe pulled even at the 150 m mark and then broke away towards the finishing wall two body lengths clear. He lowered his world record to 1 min 44.06 s in the process, prompting van den Hoogenband to raise his arm aloft. Thorpe’s winning streak was interrupted in the 100 m freestyle when his personal best of 48.81 s placed him fourth, but he returned to form in the 4 × 200 m freestyle relay. Anchoring the team of Klim, Hackett and Kirby, the Australians lowered their world record time by more than two seconds, leaving the Italians more than six seconds in arrears. Having overtaken Klim as Australia’s leading 100 m freestyle swimmer, Thorpe was entrusted with anchoring the 4 × 100 m medley relay team on 28 July. After Matt Welsh, Regan Harrison and Geoff Huegill had finished their legs, Thorpe’s change left him half a body length behind the new 100 m world champion Anthony Ervin of the United States. The Americans were expected to win, and with his typically slow start, Thorpe turned a body length behind with 50 m remaining. With an American victory seeming inevitable, Thorpe managed to accelerate and deprive Ervin of the lead in the last 5 m. This made Thorpe the only swimmer to have won six gold medals at a World Championships, and the first since Shaw in 1974 to win the 200–400–800 treble. His performances formed the basis for Australia’s gold medal win over the United States 13–9. It was also the first time since the 1956 Summer Olympics that Australia had topped the medal tally at a global meet. Thorpe’s achievements led to predictions that he could match Mark Spitz’s seven gold medals at the 1972 Summer Olympics, which he played down.

28 July 1896

The city of Miami, Florida, USA is incorporated.


In 1894, Henry Flagler had no immediate plans to extend his Florida East Coast Railway from West Palm Beach to the mosquito-ridden pioneer outpost. Only a few families lived there, and they got their mail from men who spent three days walking the beach from Lake Worth.

But two influential and visionary women had established homes in the area and saw great potential for future growth. Julia Tuttle moved to the area in 1891 and purchased land that included the former site of Fort Dallas, established on an abandoned plantation during the Second Seminole War of the 1830s.

Across the river from Tuttle lived William and Mary Brickell. They arrived in the 1870s and quickly established themselves as successful traders and real estate investors. Their holdings included considerable acreage around the New River where Fort Lauderdale would soon be built.

But then came two devastating freezes during the winter of 1894-95 that destroyed farm crops as far south as West Palm Beach. One story says that Julia Tuttle sent Henry Flagler, then wintering in Palm Beach, a bouquet of orange blossoms to prove that crops in her area had survived the freeze. Another story states that Tuttle cabled Flagler in March 1895 and asked him to come see for himself that the freeze left crops in the area untouched. Flagler instead sent an associate who returned to Palm Beach with produce and fruit.

The end result was that Flagler agreed to extend his railroad to Miami in exchange for hundreds of acres of prime real estate from Tuttle and the Brickells. Flagler also agreed to build a posh hotel on the Miami River and plat streets around the new railroad depot that became the foundation of the new city.

The first train rolled into Miami on April 13, 1896. On July 28, 344 registered voters, including many black laborers, crowded into a building called The Lobby near the Miami River and voted to incorporate a town.

They called the town Miami after the Miami River, the name of which may have derived from a word describing a Native American community from Florida who arrived in Cuba in 1710.