July 28, 1527 – Spanish explorer Rodrigo de Bastidas, who founded the Columbian city of Santa Marta, died in Cuba at the age of 67 (or 66) after being stabbed five times by his own men, who were angry over his refusal to share gold he had acquired. Bastidas is best remembered for mapping the northern coast of South America and discovering Panama. He is buried at the Cathedral of Santa María la Menor in the Colonial Zone of Santo Domingo, the oldest cathedral in the Americas.
July 28, 1776 - Colonel Paul Dudley Sargent with the 16th Continental Regiment and Colonel Israel Hutchinson with his 27th Continental Regiment, both from Massachusetts, as well as several British ships, arrived at Horn’s Hook, New York. After gathering at Horn’s Hook, the Massachusetts regiments went on to Long Island, where they suffered a humiliating defeat at the hands of brothers Admiral Richard and General William Howe. The campaign culminated in their retreat from Brooklyn Heights on Long Island back to Horn’s Hook in Manhattan on August 27, one month after their initial arrival.
July 28, 1814 - Poet Percy Bysshe Shelley eloped with 17-year-old Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin on this day, despite the fact that he was already married. Shelley and Godwin fled to Europe, marrying after Shelley’s wife committed suicide in 1816. While living in Geneva, the Shelleys and their dear friend Lord Byron challenged each other to write a compelling ghost story, and only Mary Shelley finished hers, later publishing the story as “Frankenstein.”
July 28, 1844 – Poet and priest Gerard Manley Hopkins was born in Stratford, near London.
July 28, 1861 – During the Civil War, Confederate troops occuppied New Madrid, Missouri.
July 28, 1862 – During the Civil War, skirmishes occurred at Guntersville and Stevenson, Ala.
July 28, 1862 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Helena, Old Town and Trenton, Arkansas; at Bollinger’s Mill, Moore's Mill, Fulton and Cross Timber, Missouri; near Humboldt, Tennessee; and at Culpepper and Raccoon Ford, Virginia.
July 28, 1862 – During the Civil War, railroads introduced the mail car, allowing mail to be sorted as a train travels.
July 28, 1863 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought near High Grove and at Marshall, Missouri; with Indians at Stony Lake, in the Dakota Territory; at Richmond, Kentucky; at Boone Mill, North Carolina; and at Fayetteville, West Virginia.
July 28, 1863 – During the Civil War, Confederate John Mosby began a series of attacks against General Meade's Army of the Potomac.
July 28, 1864 – During the Civil War, the Battle of Ezra Church began in Georgia as Confederates under General John Bell Hood made a third attempt to break General William T. Sherman's hold on Atlanta. The attack failed and destroyed the Confederate Army of Tennessee's offensive capabilities. The Confederates lost 3,000 men to the Union’s 630.
July 28, 1864 – During the Civil War, a two-day Federal operation began in the vicinity of Cedar Bluff, Ala.
July 28, 1864 – During the Civil War, fugitive slave laws were abolished.
July 28, 1864 – During the Civil War, skirmishes were fought at Scatterville, Arkansas; with Sioux Indians at Tahkahokuty Mountain in the Dakota Territory; at Lithonia, Flat Rock Bridge, and near Campbellton in Georgia; at Morganza, Louisiana; on the Big Creek in Missouri; and at Long's Mill, near Mulberry Gap, Tennessee. An action also occurred at Four Mile Creek, Virginia.
July 28, 1864 – During the Civil War, a four-day Federal opeation began between New Berne and Manning’s Neck, North Carolina.
July 28, 1866 – At the age of 18, Vinnie Ream became the first and youngest female artist to receive a commission from the United States government for a statue (of Abraham Lincoln).
July 28, 1868 – The 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution was certified, establishing African American citizenship and guaranteeing due process of law.
July 28, 1875 - Hattie Hooker Wilkins, the first woman elected to the Alabama State Legislature, was born in Selma. Wilkins helped found the Selma Suffrage Association in 1910 and served as an officer of the organization. She also was a member of the Alabama Equal Suffrage Association, which was established in 1912 by Pattie Ruffner Jacobs with the purpose of achieving the right to vote for white women in Alabama. Wilkins served as a board member and secretary of the AESA. The AESA disbanded in April 1920, but Wilkins remained politically active. She and other former AESA members organized the Alabama League of Women Voters, and Wilkins served as an officer. In the 1922 election, Wilkins and two other women ran for seats in the Alabama State Legislature, and Wilkins was the only successful candidate. Wilkins remained the only woman elected to the Alabama Legislature until 1937.
July 28, 1896 – The Monroe Journal reported that Allan McConico of Foshee, Ala. was on a visit to friends in Monroe County, Ala.
July 28, 1896 – The Monroe Journal reported that Cadet Challie Stevens and Tom Neal of Brewton had spent a few days with relatives and friends in Monroe County, Ala. the previous week.
July 28, 1896 – The Monroe Journal reported that cholera was playing havoc among the hogs in the northwestern portion of Monroe County, Ala.
July 28, 1896 – The Monroe Journal reported baseball was “all the rage with the boys of Mexia now; they play every Saturday afternoon and have developed into very good amateurs.”
July 28, 1896 – The Monroe Journal reported that, according to The Brewton News, a “negro boy, while attempting to board a moving train at Kirkland one day last week, fell under it, the wheels passing over his body and almost severing it. He lived only a short while.”
July 28, 1896 – The Monroe Journal reported that, according to The Brewton Standard Gauge, a new organ for the Methodist church was to arrive in a few days.
July 28, 1896 – the Monroe Journal reported that, according to The Jackson Alabamian, Mr. McLeod had about a dozen men at work on the “college building” at that time. The building was to be “by far the most handsome one of any in the county.” The Alabamian also reported that during the past week, a rattlesnake, measuring five feet and seven inches in length and having 18 rattles, was killed at the ford of Harris’ Creek, near Gum Hill. A rabbit had been swallowed by the snake shortly before the killing.”
July 28, 1905 - Dr. Benjamin F. Riley, the author of Riley’s History of Conecuh County, “spent a few hours with Monroeville (Ala.) friends” on this Friday before his return to Houston, Texas.
July 28, 1910 – The remains of prominent Conecuh County citizen and former Confederate officer Pinckney D. Bowles were scheduled to arrive in Evergreen, Ala. on the No. 1 passenger train from Tampa, Fla. Bowles passed away on July 25 at the age of 75 at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Cobb, in Tampa, where he’d been several weeks prior to his death. His funeral was scheduled to be held on July 28 at 5 p.m. at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church and was to be conducted by the Rev. H.T. Walden, the local Masonic lodge and Confederate veterans.
July 28, 1914 - World War I officially began when Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia.
July 28, 1915 – The Evergreen Courant reported that the new brick store belonging to J.F. Williams at Brooklyn, Ala. was nearing completion and would soon be opened. The new store was to be under the management of J.F. Mitchell.
July 28, 1915 – The Evergreen Courant reported that the first open boll of cotton was brought into the newspaper office by Ben Quates, who lived near Old Town.
July 28, 1918 – U.S. Army Cpl. Sidney Earnest Manning of Butler County, Ala. would receive the Medal of Honor for his actions on this day near Breuvannes, France. Army Cpl. Walter Wallace of Garland and Army Pvt. Robert G. McArthur of Brewton killed in action on this day during World War I.
July 28, 1923 – Forest Home (Butler County) native Douglas Woolley “Dixie” Parker, age 28, made his major league debut as a catcher for the Philadelphia Phillies against the St. Louis Cardinals in St. Louis. The Cardinals won, 7-2.
July 28, 1927 – Poet John Ashbery was born in Rochester, N.Y.
July 28, 1938 – In Alabama-Florida Baseball League action, the Evergreen Greenies, behind a strong pitching performance by lefty Joe Cudillo, beat the Andalusia Rams, 4-3, in Andalusia, Ala. This game was originally scheduled to be played in Evergreen, the league’s All-Star game was set to be played in Troy earlier that afternoon, which caused the Evergreen-Andalusia game to be moved to Andalusia, with the Greenies serving as the home team. The local players picked for the All-Star game were to play that afternoon in the All-Star game and then journey to Andalusia that night for the crash with the Rams.
July 28, 1938 – Before a record crowd of 2,300 in Troy, the Alabama-Florida Southern All-Stars baseball team beat the Northern All-Stars, 9-3.
July 28, 1938 – The Evergreen Courant reported that Conecuh County’s population had been estimated at 26,105 as of July 1 by the Bureau of Vital Statistics of the State Department of Health.
July 28, 1939 – Prominent merchant, cattle breeder and planter Harry Stillings passed away at his home at Hybart, Ala. after a heart attack.
July 28, 1940 – Monroeville, Ala. businessman Charles Finklea was scheduled to leave for Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas, where he was to buy fall and winter goods for the Finklea & Finklea Store.
July 28, 1940 – Monroeville and Thomasville’s baseball fans were scheduled to play at 3:30 p.m. at the “new High School” in Monroeville, Ala. Digman and Stevens were to pitch for Monroeville, and “Auburn star” Slick Andress and Hill “of the University” were to pitch for Thomasville. They had played six times earlier in the season, and Monroeville had won all but one.
July 28, 1941 – Aug. 2, 1941 - One of the largest troop movements ever to pass through Evergreen, Ala. was seen when the 31st (Dixie) Division, composed of National Guard units from Florida, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana passed through the area en route to the maneuvers at Dry Prong, La. The group consisted of about 6,000 trucks and 18,000 men. The total length of each echelon was 66 miles, so that as the last truck was passing through Evergreen each day, the first one was entering Grove Hill.
July 28, 1955 – Evergreen City Clerk G.L. Wilkinson announced that the Evergreen City Council had approved the lease to aquire the parking lot property behind Dr. R.W. Stallworth’s office at the south end of West Front Street in Evergreen, Ala. Evergreen city officials hoped the parking lot would relieve the congested parking downtown on Fridays and Saturdays and create more parking in No Man’s Land.
July 28, 1956 – English explorer Robert Swan was born in Durham, England. He is best known as an an advocate for the protection of Antarctica and renewable energy. Swan is also the founder of 2041, a company which is dedicated to the preservation of the Antarctic and the author with Gil Reavill of “Antarctica 2041: My Quest to Save the Earth's Last Wilderness.”
July 28, 1958 – Mobile, Alabama’s Milt Bolling made his final appearance in the Major League’s, taking the field for the final time with the Detroit Tigers.
July 28, 1962 - A movie version of “The Miracle Worker,” a play about the early life of Alabama author Helen Keller, was released.
July 28, 1965 – Workers began putting down the base material on the new Monroe County (Ala.) Airport and expected to have the airport paved and ready for use in about three months.
July 28, 1965 – During the Vietnam War, U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson announced his order to increase the number of United States troops in South Vietnam from 75,000 to 125,000.
July 28, 1972 - In response to Soviet accusations that the United States had conducted a two-month bombing campaign intentionally to destroy the dikes and dams of the Tonkin Delta in North Vietnam, a CIA report was made public by the Nixon administration. The report revealed that U.S. bombing at 12 locations had in fact caused accidental minor damage to North Vietnam’s dikes, but the damage was unintentional and the dikes were not the intended targets of the bombings. The nearly 2,000 miles of dikes on the Tonkin plain, and more than 2,000 along the sea, made civilized life possible in the Red River Delta. Had the dikes been intentionally targeted, their destruction would have destroyed centuries of patient work and caused the drowning or starvation of hundreds of thousands of peasants. Bombing the dikes had been advocated by some U.S. strategists since the beginning of U.S. involvement in the war, but had been rejected outright by U.S. presidents sitting during the war as an act of terrorism.
July 28, 1976 – The Tangshan earthquake, measuring between 7.8 and 8.2 moment magnitude, flattened Tangshan in the People's Republic of China, killing 242,769 and injuring 164,851, making it the deadliest earthquake in modern history. Some in China suspect that the true number of fatalities could be double or triple the number reported by Chinese officials.
July 28, 1978 – The Steiner House in Greenville, Ala. was added to the Alabama Register of Landmarks and Heritage.
July 28, 1983 – The Evergreen Courant reported that the following Conecuh County High School cheerleaders were among over 155 junior and senior high school cheerleaders who participated in the 15th annual Alabama High School Athletic Association Cheerleading Clinic at Troy State University: Sharon Baggett, Tammy Benjamin, Jacqueline Booker, Elizabeth Cantrell, Kim Covin, Tracy Covin, Teresa Jones, Miss Stringer, Robin Weaver, Vicki Weaver and Gloria Wiley. Sponsors Elaine Covin and Margie Kirksey also attended.
July 28, 1983 – The Evergreen Courant reported, under the headline “Incident at City Hall,” that ill feelings between Evergreen Mayor Lee Smith and City Councilman Lomax Cassady that had long simmered came to a boil on the morning of Wed., July 20. After a verbal exchange, the two men swapped blows in the council meeting room at City Hall. The mayor received treatment including stitches on the head and lips at the emergency room of Evergreen Hospital. The councilman also had a “fat lip.” Both men said that they regretted the incident and were embarrassed by their participation in it.
July 28, 1983 – The Evergreen Courant reported that Kenneth Lavon Ausby had taken the oath of office as a policeman with the Evergreen (Ala.) Police Department. The oath was administered by Conecuh County Judge of Probate Frank T. Salter. Taking part were acting Chief of Police James Powell and City Councilman John E. Smith.
July 28, 1983 – The Evergreen Courant reported that Douglas Edward Griffin, 25, of Evergreen, Ala., had been charged with capital murder in the shooting death of Patrick Frank Dale, 27, also of Evergreen, whose decomposed body was found near Camden the week before. Griffin, who was arrested July 22 in Evergreen, was being held in the Dallas County Jail, but was to be tried in Wilcox County. Dale was shot twice in the upper body with a shotgun on July 16, and his body was found in a wooded area just of Alabama 89 in Wilcox County, according to Wilcox County Sheriff Prince Arnold. His 1977 Chrysler was later found in Tuscaloosa.
July 28, 1984 - Katrina Riley, the daughter of Robert and Jackie Riley, won the title of 1985 Conecuh County Junior Miss on this Saturday night.
July 28, 1984 – Stanley Johnson and Harry Crabtree, both from Conecuh County, Ala., teamed up to catch a 21-pound blue catfish on this Saturday in Camden. Johnson was on the reel, and Crabtree used the dip net to land the fish, which was supposedly caught on a bream hook.
July 28, 1990 – Monroeville, Alabama’s first Wal-Mart store, which was located off the Highway 21 Bypass, opened for business with the grand opening to follow on Aug. 1, 1990. The store manager was Helen Wiygul, and the store employed 150 people.
July 28, 1990 – Edward Scott Brown, 16, of Frisco City, Ala. was fatally injured in a one-car accident on this Saturday around 3:30 a.m. at the intersection of I-65 and State Highway 21, about six miles north of Atmore. Brown was traveling north on Highway 21 when he lost control of the 1982 Pontiac Trans Am he was driving, hit the overpass bridge column and was ejected from the vehicle. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
July 28, 1991 - Dennis Martinez, 36, of the Montreal Expos pitched a perfect game to lead his team to a 2-0 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers. It was the 15th perfect game in Major League history.
July 28, 1993 - Author Harry Middleton died in Hoover, Ala.
July 28, 1994 - Kenny Rogers of the Texas Rangers pitched the 16th perfect game in major league baseball history.
July 28, 1996 – The remains of a prehistoric man were discovered near Kennewick, Washington. Such remains would be known as the Kennewick Man.
July 28, 1997 – This day’s edition of the Miami Herald reported an incident in which six British tourists and their guide, Dan Rowland, saw a Skunk Ape on Turner River Road, just north of Ochopee, Fla. According to Rowland, the unknown ape-like creature was between six and seven feet tall, “flat-faced, broad-shouldered, covered with long brown hair or fur and reeking of a skunk.”
July 28, 1999 – Six historic locations in Clarke County, Ala. were added to the National Register of Historic Places. Those locations included the Bush House at 168 North Church Street in Grove Hill (built in 1912); the Stephen Beech Cleveland House, also known as The Lodge, in Suggsville (built in 1860); the John A. Coate House, located on Dubose Street in Grove Hill (built in 1855); the Cobb House in Grove Hill (built in 1865); the Gainestown Methodist Church and Cemetery in Gainestown; and the Jesse Pickens Pugh Farmstead, a 289-acre homestead near Grove Hill.
July 28, 2011 – United Nations Security Council Resolution 2001 relating to United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq was adopted.
July 28, 2014 – “Running Wild with Bear Grylls” premiered on NBC. In this adventure TV series, Grylls took celebrities on a two-day trip in the wilderness. This celebrities who took part in the 6-episode series are Zac Efron, Ben Stiller, Tamron Hall, Deion Sanders, Channing Tatum, and Tom Arnold.