10 Historic events that happened November 3

Have you ever wondered what happened the exact day you’re living right now? (Or, if you’re reading this in the future, on November 3rd.) It’s easy to forget that any day can be a historic day if you only know the history behind it. So, if you’re one of those people who wants to know what happened on this day, November 3rd, continue reading.


1. 1534: The First Act of Supremacy was passed

The first Act of Supremacy were passed by Parliament giving King Henry VIII, and other monarchs, Royal Supremacy. This meant that he was declared the supreme head of the Church of England. The way it was written also presented Royal Supremacy as a fact rather than something granted by Parliament. This was also the moment King Henry VIII broke with Rome, and the Catholic Church, and established the beginning of the English Reformation.


2. 1868: John Willis Menard became the first black man elected to the House of Representatives

During a special election in 1868 to fill the seat of a Democrat representative who had died in office, Menard was elected as a representative to Louisiana’s 2nd congressional district. However, he was denied a seat because his opponent, Caleb S. Hunt challenged the results. While he was never seated in the House of Representatives, Menard did become the first African American to address the chamber in February of 1869. 


3. 1946: The Constitution of Japan was ratified by the Emperor

The constitution implemented a parliamentary system and the Emperor of Japan became a symbol of the State, taking on a ceremonial role acting on the sovereignty of the people. The Japanese constitution is also the oldest unamended constitution in the world having been unamended for over 70 years. While it became law on November 3, 1946 by means of the Emperor’s ratification, the constitution did not go into effect until May 3, 1947.


4. 1957: First dog in space (and the launch of Sputnik 2)

On November 3, 1957, the Soviets (remember, Russia was still the Soviet Union back then) launched Sputnik and onboard was Laika the dog. She was a stray found wandering the streets of Moscow and chosen for this special mission. It was expected that Laika would not survive the space flight and unfortunately, this prediction came true. However, Laika has been memorialized in a monument atop a rocket in Russia. 


5. 1986: Exposure of the Iran-Contra affair

The Lebanese magazine Ash-Shiraa exposed the sale of weapons to Iran by the U.S. as well as the arming of the contras attempting to topple the Nicaraguan government. These sales attempted to circumvent administration policy as well as the Boland Amendment which aimed to limit U.S. assistance to the contras. As a result of this exposure, there were indictments, denials, pardons, and a conviction. 


There are so many things that have happened over the course of history that it is fascinating what you can find about any given day. There are only 365 days in a year so over the course of human history, there has to be some overlap between major (and not so major) historical events.