Titanic, Roman Catacombs and South Africa: 3 things that happened On This Day 31 May

What happened on this day in history? We round up three famous events, births, battles and deaths...

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31 May

1578: The Roman Catacombs were said to have been rediscovered by accident when some workmen digging for pozzolana earth (excellent for building purposes) uncovered a burial chamber.

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1910: The Union of South Africa came into being as a Dominion with the unification of the former Boer republics of the Transvaal and the Orange Free State with the British colonies of Natal and the Cape.

1911: The RMS Titanic was launched at the Harland and Wolff shipyard in Belfast. She was completed in March 1912 and began her doomed maiden voyage on 10 April.

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Compiled by Julian Humphrys – You can follow Julian on Twitter @GeneralJules