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22nd October

1797 The first parachute jump was made by André-Jacques Garnein, 6,000ft above Paris.

1836 Sam Houston was inaugurated as the first president of the Republic of Texas.

1917 * Joan Fontaine, US actress who won an Oscar for the film Rebecca (1940).

1930 The BBC Symphony Orchestra played their first concert at the Queen's Hall, London.

1938 * Derek Jacobi, English stage and television actor.

1943 * Catherine Deneuve, French actress who starred in the film Repulsion (1965).

1952 * Jeff Goldblum, US film actor.

1954 West Germany joined the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

1962 The Cuban Missile Crisis began with a US naval blockade of Cuba.

1962 Nelson Mandela's trial for treason began in South Africa.

1966 George Blake, escaped from prison in a daring break-out believed to have been masterminded by the Soviet Union.

1973 Spanish cellist, conductor, and composer Pablo Casals died in Puerto Rico, at age 96.

1974 A bomb exploded in Brooks Club, London, near to where opposition leader Edward Heath was dining.

1983 Thousands gathered in London to support the CND in their biggest ever protest over the use of nuclear missiles.

2001 Cambridgeshire and Essex were kept on flood alert following what experts say are the worst floods in 20 years.

xxxx * = Date of birth

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