July 27 1890. Probably due to his mental instability, the Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh committed suicide. Over his life, Van Gogh had periods of stability and madness. In 1888 he was living with the painter Paul Gauguin in Arles and after the latter decided to leave, Van Gogh cut off a portion of his left ear as a sign of despair. After this incident he went to a mental hospital until 1890 when he felt cured and went to Auvers-sur-Oise, north of Paris. There he seemed in good health but on July 27, Van Gogh is said to have short himself in the torso in a field where he had painted before. However, this did not kill him and the same night Van Gogh returned to the inn where he was residing. The painter died two days later, on July 29, after confessing his suicide attempt and saying he would do it again if he survived. Van Gogh was a post-Impressionist painter, whose avant-garde painting introduced the fauvist and expressionist movements. His paintings, however, gained fame only after his death.
Also on July 27: The first U.S. federal government agency, the Department of Foreign Affairs, is established (1789); French Revolution: Maximilien Robespierre is arrested (1794); The Geneva Convention of 1929 is signed by 53 nations (1929); The character Bugs Bunny is introduced in the animated sort A Wild Hare (1940); John Walsh’s son, 6 year old Adam Walsh, is kidnapped in Hollywood, Florida and is found murdered two weeks later (1981); RMS Titanic Inc. begins the first expedited salvage of wreckage of the RMS Titanic (1987); Tony Hawk lands the first 900 on a skateboard (1999).
Born on July 27: Charlotte Corday (1768), Thomas Campbell (1777), Giosuè Carducci (1835), Thomas Herbst (1848), Betty Thomas (1948), Cliff Curtis (1968), Alex Rodriguez(1975).