1920-1939 | Appeasing Hitler | Germany

The Bank of England hands over Czech gold to the Nazis

15 March 1939 On 15 March 1939, less than six months before the outbreak of the Second World War, German troops occupied the Czech Republic, a parliamentary democracy. It was a military takeover without any credible pretext beyond Hitler’s fanciful claim that the provinces of ‘Bohemia and Moravia (had) for thousands of years belonged to the…

1500-1799 | Slavery

MPs love of the opera means slavery abolition bill fails

15 March 1796 On 15 March 1796, a slavery abolition bill narrowly failed to gain a majority in the House of Commons, falling short by just 74 to 70 votes.  There were naturally a large number of MPs, especially those with vested interests and investments in either slave trading or the plantation economies of the…