Dundee-based DC Thomson published the first ever issue of The Beano in July 1938. It would go on to become one of the most popular comics in Britain, regularly selling more than two million copies every week. Its most famous character, Dennis the Menace, didn’t arrive until the early 1950s, and his dog, Gnasher, almost two decades later, in 1968. The two have been inseparable ever since.

July was also the month in which author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle died. He had found fame as the creator of the detective, Sherlock Holmes, but had tired of the character during his lifetime. Famously, he had attempted to kill him off at one point but been forced to bring him back. In one of his last interviews, given weeks before his death, he had lamented being remembered as Holmes’ creator, rather than for any of his other works.

Brewer William McEwan and distiller John Walker, the latter now better known as Johnnie, were born in July, Queen Mary was forced to abdicate, Piper Alpha was destroyed by fire, and facts emerged of a trial that would lead, eventually, to Glasgow’s last ever public execution.


Also in July…

Naval hero Admiral Adam Duncan is born in Dundee 1st
Scotland loses 6000 miles of its waters
The Western Isles become part of Scotland 2nd
Designer Robert Adam is born 3rd
SS Daphne sinks upon launch, killing 124
Orkney politicians propose Norway merger
The Higgs Boson is discovered 4th
The Treaty of Edinburgh is signed 5th
NHS Scotland is founded
Scheduled services start at Dundee Airport
Glasgow Science Centre opens
Piper Alpha oil platform is destroyed by fire 6th
Glasgow Cathedral is consecrated 7th
Author Arthur Conan Doyle dies
Maggies Centres founder Maggie Keswick Jencks dies 8th
Broadcasting magnate Richard Findlay dies
Hundreds killed as battleship sinks in Scapa Flow 9th
Queen’s Park FC is founded
Madame Ecosse is born in Glasgow 10th
Crown jewels lost when ferry sinks in the Firth of Forth
Robert the Bruce is born 11th
Train crash demolishes Largs railway station
Glasgow-born Ian Brady commits first Moors Murder 12th
Paraffin Young dies at Wemyss Bay 13th
The Scottish National War Memorial is opened 14th
Architect William Henry Playfair is born 15th
Brewer William McEwan is born 16th
The Commonwealth Games opens in Edinburgh
The Bank of Scotland is founded 17th
Open University founder Walter Perry dies
Janet Douglas, Lady Glamis, is burned at the stake
First ships head off on the Darien Expedition 18th
Trial that led to Glasgow’s last public execution 19th
Convict championed by Arthur Conan Doyle is released 20th
Submarine U-23 is sunk
Commuter trains crash at Newton 21st
Edinburgh Zoo opens to the public 22nd
The Battle of Falkirk
The Commonwealth Games open in Glasgow 23rd
Doomed paddle steamer PS Comet is launched 24th
Queen Mary is forced to abdicate
Whisky icon John “Jonnie” Walker is born 25th
Queen Elizabeth II opens Waverley Mall
The Union Bridge joins Scotland and England 26th
Parliament authorises construction of the Caledonian Canal 27th
Aberdeen Airport opens for business 28th
Refurbished National Museum of Scotland opens its doors 29th
Mary, Queen of Scots, marries her cousin
DC Thomson publishes first issue of The Beano 30th
Passengers killed when train hits a cow
The Caledonian Railway is founded 31st
The Scotland Act 1978 gains Royal Assent