July 31, 1715: A fleet of Spanish ships carrying gold, silver and jewelry sank during a hurricane off the east Florida coast, scattering most of their treasure along the ocean floor. Of some 2,500 crew members, more than 1,000 died.
1777: The Marquis de Lafayette, a 19-year-old French nobleman, was made a major-general in the American Continental Army.
1875: The 17th president of the United States, Andrew Johnson, died in Carter County, Tennessee, at age 66.
1919: Germany's Weimar Constitution was adopted by the republic's National Assembly.
1930: The radio character "The Shadow" made his debut as narrator of the "Detective Story Hour" on CBS Radio.
1933: The radio series "Jack Armstrong, the All-American Boy," made its debut on CBS radio station WBBM in Chicago.
1942: Oxfam International had its beginnings as the Oxford Committee for Famine Relief was founded in England.
1954: Pakistan's K2 was conquered as two members of an Italian expedition, Achille Compagnoni and Lino Lacedelli, reached the summit.
1964: The American space probe Ranger 7 reached the moon, transmitting pictures back to Earth before impacting the lunar surface.
1972: Democratic vice-presidential candidate Thomas Eagleton withdrew from the ticket with George McGovern following disclosures that Eagleton had once undergone psychiatric treatment.
1973: Delta Air Lines Flight 723, a DC-9, crashed while trying to land at Boston's Logan International Airport, killing all 89 people on board.
1989: A pro-Iranian group in Lebanon released a grisly videotape showing the body of American hostage William R. Higgins, a Marine lieutenant-colonel, dangling from a rope.
1991: President George H.W. Bush and Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev signed the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty in Moscow.
"The trouble with the public is that there is too much of it."
Don Marquis, American journalist, poet and dramatist (1878-1937).
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