Events - August 5
1884 - The cornerstone for the Statue of Liberty was laid at Bedloe’s Island (now called Liberty Island), New York. The actual statue was accepted as a gift to the United States from the people of France by U.S. President Grover Cleveland on October 28, 1886. The statue became a symbol of freedom to the European immigrants who passed it on their way to Ellis Island and their admittance to the United States. It remains today as a symbol of liberty for all.
1914 - Euclid Avenue and East 105th Street in Cleveland, Ohio became the first intersection in the U.S. to be equipped with an electric traffic light. The lighting ceremony occurred on this day.
1921 - KDKA radio in Pittsburgh, PA did the first play-by-play broadcast of a baseball game. Harold Arlin described the action as the Pirates beat Philadelphia 8-5.
1921 - The "New York World" published the first cartoon to be awarded a Pulitzer Prize. "On the Road to Moscow", by Rollin Kirby, received the prestigious journalism honor.
1923 - Henry Sullivan became the first American to swim across the English Channel and he did it on this day.
1924 - The comic strip "Little Orphan Annie" debuted in the New York "Daily News". Annie and her little dog, Sandy, were creations of cartoonist Harold Gray. His work would come to life in the Broadway and film adaptations of Annie a half-century later -- to great success.
1935 - The radio drama "Backstage Wife" was first aired -- on the Mutual Broadcasting System. The show was heard until 1959.
1936 - Jesse Owens won his third gold medal by running a 200-meter race in 20.7 seconds at the Olympic Games held in Berlin, Germany.
1957 - Dick Clark’s "American Bandstand" caught the attention of network executives at ABC-TV in New York, who decided to put the show on its afternoon schedule. However, the one thing they couldn't do was disrupt an airing of the hugely popular "Mickey Mouse Club" at 5 p.m. What to do? Halfway through the "American Bandstand" show, Clark would tell listeners to come back for more of the show ... but “right now ... here comes the Mouse!” At that time, the network would cut away from Philadelphia and show Walt Disney's Mouseketeers. Following the show ... "American Bandstand" would return for another 30 minutes.
1960 - In an unprecedented move, two major-league baseball clubs traded managers. Jimmy Dykes of the Detroit Tigers moved to manage the Cleveland Indians while Joe Gordon left the Indians to take over the managerial reins of the Tigers.
1962 - Actress Marilyn Monroe died from a drug overdose in Los Angeles, in a case that is still unsolved and involves a lot of speculation. She was 36 years old.
1974 - The comic strip "Tank McNamara" premiered in 75 newspapers. Jeff Millar and Bill Hinds created the 6-foot, 4-inch, 225-pound former defensive tackle of the State University Sand Crabs; and who became a jock/sportscaster.
1975 - Singer Stevie Wonder signed the recording industry’s largest contract: $13 million over a seven-year period. Wonder stayed with his original label, Tamla/Motown, while other major Motown artists, including Diana Ross, Gladys Knight and The Four Tops had left the label over creative differences and financial accounting disputes.
1983 - Vida Blue was released by the Kansas City Royals. Blue had spent 13 years in the big leagues. At his release by the Royals, the former Cy Young Award winner had gone 0-19 in pitching appearances.
1984 - Toronto’s Cliff Johnson set a major-league baseball record by hitting the 19th pinch-hit home run in his career as he led the Blue Jays to a 4-3 win over the Baltimore Orioles.
1984 - Joan Benoit won the first women’s Olympic marathon at the Summer Games in Los Angeles, California.
1984 - Show business mourned the loss of one of its greatest and most colorful actors. Richard Burton died of a stroke at the age of 58.
1986 - John McEnroe beat Marko Ostoja in the Volvo Invitational Tournament held in Vermont. The ‘bad boy of tennis’ had taken a 6-1/2 month respite from tennis before returning to the court to defeat Ostoja.
1994 - Michael Jackson and bride, Lisa Marie Presley, visited Budapest, Hungary. While there, they filmed an advertisement for his upcoming album, "HIStory - Past, Present and Future - Book 1". The couple also visited children’s hospitals where they comforted young patients and distributed toys.
1999 - St. Louis Cardinals first baseman Mark McGwire belted home runs #500 and 501 to reach the 500-homer mark faster than anyone had before. He did it in his 5,487th at-bat. Babe Ruth had held the previous record, having reached #500 in 5,801 at-bats. In case you are wondering, the others in the top five were Jimmie Foxx (7,074), Mickey Mantle (7,300) and Mike Schmidt (7,331). McGwire connected for his historic homer(s) in St. Louis’ Busch Stadium, the same ballpark where he had broken Roger Maris’ 37-year-old single-season home-run record Sept. 8, 1998, when he hit homer #62. McGwire went on to hit 70 home runs that season, finishing just ahead of Chicago Cubs’ Sammy Sosa, who hit 66.
Birthdays - August 5
1850 - Guy de Maupassant (author: The Tellier House, Yvette, Toine, The Horla, The Diamond Necklace, The Umbrella, The Piece of String, A Woman’s Life, Bel-Ami, Peter and John; died July 6, 1893)
1889 - Conrad Aiken (Pulitzer Prize-winning poet: Selected Poems ; died Aug 17, 1973)
1906 - John Huston (Academy Award-winning director: Treasure of Sierra Madre ; The Maltese Falcon, The African Queen, Prizzi’s Honor; father of Academy Award-winning actress Angelica Huston; died Aug 28, 1987)
1911 - Robert Taylor (Spangler Brugh) (actor: Magnificent Obsession, Quo Vadis, Billy the Kid, Bataan, Knights of the Round Table, The Night Walker, Death Valley Days; died June 8, 1969)
1914 - David Brian (actor: Pocketful of Miracles, Intruder in the Dust, Flamingo Road, Mr. District Attorney, The Immortal; died July 15, 1993)
1926 - Jeri Southern (Genevieve Hering) (singer: You Better Go Now, When I Fall in Love, Fire Down Below; died Aug 4, 1991)
1930 - Neil Armstrong (NASA astronaut: command pilot of Gemini 8 [launched Mar 16, 1966], performed first successful docking of two vehicles in space; commander of Apollo 11 , first manned lunar landing mission: Armstrong was first man to land a craft on the Moon and first man to step onto its surface; died Aug 25, 2012)
1935 - John Saxon (Carmen Orrico) (actor: Raid on Entebbe, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Beverly Hills Cop 3, The Cardinal, Death of a Gunfighter, The Unforgiven, The Bold Ones)
1940 - Damita Jo (DuBlanc) (singer: I’ll Save the Last Dance for You, If You Go Away; died Dec 25, 1998)
1940 - Roman Gabriel (College Football Hall of Famer: quarterback: North Carolina State; LA Rams, Philadelphia Eagles QB)
1942 - Rick Huxley (musician: bass: group: Dave Clark Five: Glad All Over, Bits and Pieces, Red Balloon, Good Old Rock & Roll; died Feb 11, 2013)
1943 - Sammi Smith (singer: Help Me Make It Through the Night, So Long Charlie Brown, What a Lie, You Just Hurt My Last Feeling; died Feb 12, 2005)
1945 - Loni Anderson (actress: WKRP in Cincinnati, The Jayne Mansfield Story, Easy Street, Necessity, Nurses)
1945 - Duane Benson (football: Oakland Raiders linebacker: Super Bowl II)
1946 - Erika Slezak (Emmy Award-winning actress: One Life to Live)
1947 - Bernie (Bernardo) Carbo (baseball: Cincinnati Reds [World Series: 1970], SL Cardinals, Boston Red Sox [World Series: 1975], Milwaukee Brewers, Cleveland Indians, Pittsburgh Pirates)
1947 - Rick Derringer (Zehringer) (singer, songwriter: group: The McCoys: Hang on, Sloopy, Fever, Come on, Let’s Go; solo: Rock and Roll Hootchie Coo; record producer)
1948 - William Hootkins (actor: Star Wars, The Lost Boys, Flash Gordon, Raiders of the Lost Ark, American Gothic, Batman, A River Runs Through It, The NeverEnding Story III, The Omega Code; died Oct 23, 2005)
1953 - Samantha Sang (singer: Emotion)
1956 - Maureen McCormick (actress: A Very Brady Christmas, The Brady Bunch)
1962 - Patrick Ewing (basketball: Olympic Gold medalist , Olympic Dream Team ; New York Knicks: NBA Rookie of the Year ; Georgetown University: 3 time All-American [1983, 1984, 1985], Naismith & Eastman Awards, Rupp Trophy )
1966 - Jonathan Silverman (actor: At First Sight, Little Big League, Weekend at Bernie’s series, Little Sister, Caddyshack 2, Brighton Beach Memoirs, Gimme a Break)
Chart Toppers - August 5
1948 - You Can’t Be True, Dear - The Ken Griffin Orchestra (vocal: Jerry Wayne)
Woody Woodpecker Song - The Kay Kyser Orchestra (vocal: Gloria Wood & The Campus Kids)
It’s Magic - Doris Day
Bouquet of Roses - Eddy Arnold
1956 - My Prayer - The Platters
Hound Dog/Don’t Be Cruel - Elvis Presley
Whatever Will Be Will Be (Que Sera Sera) - Doris Day
I Walk the Line - Johnny Cash
1964 - A Hard Day’s Night - The Beatles
The Little Old Lady (From Pasadena) - Jan & Dean
Everybody Loves Somebody - Dean Martin
Dang Me - Roger Miller
1972 - Alone Again (Naturally) - Gilbert O’Sullivan
(If Loving You is Wrong) I Don’t Want to Be Right - Luther Ingram
Daddy Don’t You Walk So Fast - Wayne Newton
It’s Gonna Take a Little Bit Longer - Charley Pride
1980 - Magic - Olivia Newton-John
Little Jeannie - Elton John
Take Your Time (Do It Right) - The S.O.S. Band
Dancin’ Cowboys - The Bellamy Brothers
1988 - Roll with It - Steve Winwood
Hands to Heaven - Breathe
Make Me Lose Control - Eric Carmen
Don’t We All Have the Right - Ricky Van Shelton
Those were the days, my friend. We thought they‘d never end...
Written and edited by Carol Williams and John Williams
Produced by John Williams
Those Were the Days, the Today in History feature
from 440 International
No portion of these files may be reproduced without the express, written permission of 440 International Inc.