Today in History, May 10

By AAP and agencies
2014 - Rise Like a Phoenix by Austrian singer Conchita Wurst wins the Eurovision Song Contest

Highlights in history on this date:

1307 - Scottish king Robert the Bruce heavily defeats an English cavalry force at the battle of Loudoun Hill in Ayrshire.

1655 - Jamaica is taken by the British after being in Spanish hands for 161 years.

1774 - Louis XVI ascends to the throne of France after Louis XV dies of smallpox.

1796 - France's Napoleon Bonaparte defeats Austrians at Lodi in Italy campaign.

1818 - Death of American patriot Paul Revere, famed for his warning of Boston-area residents of the advance of British troops.

1849 - Twenty-two people are killed when anti-British sentiments flare into a riot outside the Astor Place Opera House in New York.

1869 - The first transcontinental US railway is completed when the Union Pacific and Central Pacific lines are joined at Promontory, Utah.

1871 - Treaty of Frankfurt ends Franco-Prussian War, France cedes Alsace-Lorraine to Germany.

1888 - First colonial athletics championships are held at the NSW Amateur Athletics Association Cricket Ground in Sydney.

1924 - J Edgar Hoover is appointed director of the US Federal Bureau of Investigations - the FBI.

1925 - William Ferguson Massey, New Zealand statesman and prime minister (1912-25), dies in office.

1933 - Paraguay declares war on Bolivia.

1933 - In Berlin, 25,000 books are thrown into a bonfire in the first Nazi book-burning.

1940 - Germany invades the Netherlands, Luxembourg and Belgium; British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain resigns and Winston Churchill forms government.

1941 - Hitler's deputy Rudolf Hess parachutes into Scotland in an apparent attempt to negotiate a peace deal; he is arrested and imprisoned.

1949 - Siam changes its name to Thailand.

1960 - US nuclear-powered submarine Triton completes an 84-day submerged voyage around the world.

1963 - The Rolling Stones hold their first recording session. The songs they record that day include Come On and I Wanna Be Loved.

1968 - Preliminary Vietnam peace talks begin in Paris.

1971 - Former Nazi Rudolf Hess finishes 30 years' imprisonment but Soviets insist he serve full life sentence in Berlin's Spandau Prison. (His sentence comes to an end when he commits suicide in 1987.)

1972 - South Vietnam's President Nguyen van Thieu declares state of martial law.

1977 - Death of Oscar-winning US actor Joan Crawford, aged 73.

1978 - Princess Margaret of Britain and the Earl of Snowdon announce they are divorcing after 18 years of marriage.

1983 - NSW Premier Neville Wran steps aside after allegations he sought to influence a magistrate.

1992 - Peruvian police storm a prison cell block held by mutineering prisoners from the Shining Path guerilla movement, killing at least 28.

1993 - More than 200 workers are killed when fire destroys a toy factory in Nakhon Pathom province, Thailand.

1994 - Media tycoon Silvio Berlusconi takes office as Italy's prime minister at the head of a coalition government.

1994 - Nelson Mandela is inaugurated as the first black president of South Africa.

1995 - An elevator carrying gold miners plunges to the bottom of a mineshaft near Orkney, South Africa, crushing as many as 100 people to death.

1996 - A storm hits Mt Everest, killing eight climbers in one of the worst disasters since Everest was first conquered in 1953.

2002 - A federal judge sentences former FBI agent Robert Hanssen, considered one of the most damaging spies in US history, to life in prison for selling secrets to Moscow.

2004 - Human rights group Amnesty International alleges that British soldiers have shot and killed Iraqi civilians, including an eight-year-old girl, in situations where the troops were under no apparent threat.

2005 - Egypt's parliament overwhelmingly passes a constitutional amendment allowing multicandidate presidential elections for the first time.

2006 - Death of A M Rosenthal, aged 84, a former executive editor of the New York Times and Pulitzer Prize-winning foreign correspondent.

2007 - Tony Blair says he is stepping down as British prime minister on June 27, after serving more than a decade.

2011 - Bali Nine drug courier Scott Rush wins a desperate bid for his life after a court reduced his sentence to life in prison.

2013 - Salvage workers in Bangladesh pull a survivor from the ruins of an eight-storey building 17 days after it collapsed killing more than 1000 people.

2014 - Rise Like a Phoenix by Austrian singer Conchita Wurst wins the Eurovision Song Contest.

2016 - At least 50 are killed in flooding and landslides triggered by heavy rains in Ethiopia.

Today's Birthdays:

Sir Thomas Lipton, English merchant-sportsman known for establishing the Lipton tea brand (1850-1931); Fred Astaire, US dancer-actor (1899-1987); Miuccia Prada, Italian fashion designer (1949-); Sid Vicious, English punk rock legend (1957-1979); Bono, Irish singer/songwriter of U2 (1960-); Linda Evangelista, Canadian supermodel (1965-); Young MC, US rapper (1967-); Chas Licciardello, Australian comedian (1977-).

Thought For Today:

Nothing recedes like success - Walter Winchell, American columnist and broadcaster (1897-1972).