440 International Those Were the Days
August 9

Events - August 9
1831 - The first steam locomotive train began its inaugural run, between Albany and Schenectady, in New York.

1859 - Nathan Ames of Saugus, MA patented the escalator. Please hold on to the handrails, make sure you are wearing shoes and secure all personal belongings -- including small children. And, just because these things tend to run slow, that’s no excuse for running up the escalator steps, OK? Thank you.

1910 - Alva J. Fisher of Chicago, IL received a patent for an invention that moms, grandmas and single guys certainly came to appreciate: the electric washing machine. Previous to Mr. Fisher’s invention, washing machines were cranked by hand (not easily done) -- or you used a washboard (also sometimes used as a musical instrument).

1932 - Helen Morgan joined the Victor Young orchestra to record "Bill", a popular tune from Broadway’s "Showboat".

1936 - Jesse Owens became the first American to win four medals in one Olympics. Owens ran one leg of the winning 400-meter relay team in Berlin. His three other gold medals were won in the 100-meter, 200-meter and the long jump events.

1942 - CBS radio debuted "Our Secret Weapon". It was a program that featured Rex Stout, who countered lies being broadcast by the Axis powers through shortwave radio.

1945 - ‘Fat Man’, a plutonium bomb carried by the U.S.A. B-29 bomber, "Bockscar", was scheduled to be dropped on the Japanese city of Kokura. It was three days after the U.S. had dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima. The weather made visibility poor, so the aircraft passed Kokura and chose its secondary target, Nagasaki. Fat Man destroyed over half of Nagasaki and killed more than 70,000 people. This was the end of World War II. Japan surrendered unconditionally the following day.

1957 - Paul Anka, at fifteen years of age, was headed up the pop charts with "Diana". The single spent nine weeks (out of a total of eighteen on the charts) at #1.

1963 - The TV program "Ready Steady Go!" premiered on ITV in London, England. The show gave exposure to such music luminaries as Bob Dylan and The Rolling Stones.

1969 - "Hot Fun in The Summertime", by Sly and the Family Stone, and "Easy to Be Hard", from the Broadway production "Hair", were released on this day. "Hot Fun" made it to number two on the music charts (10/18/69) and "Easy to Be Hard" climbed to number four (9/27/69).

1969 - Cult leader Charles Manson and his disciples committed one of Los Angeles’ most heinous crimes. They entered the home of movie director Roman Polanski and brutally murdered Polanski’s wife (actress Sharon Tate), movie director Voityck Frykowski, famous hair stylist Jay Sebring, student Steven Parent and coffee heiress Abigail Folger.

1971 - LeRoy Satchel Paige, one of baseball’s pitching legends, was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY.

1974 - At noon on this day, U.S. President Richard Nixon’s resignation was official. Mr. Nixon, the subject of the Watergate scandal, had been facing possible impeachment. The previous evening he had given a speech to the American people announcing his resignation. He was the first U.S. President to resign.

1975 - New Orleans, Louisiana was full of celebration -- and it wasn’t even Mardi Gras time. The Superdome was opened as the hometown Saints met the Houston Oilers in an exhibition football game. The Oilers won handily, 31-7, in what was described as “a very lackluster” game. There is nothing lackluster about the Superdome though. The Superdome cost $163 million to construct -- and really is super!

1981 - Major-league baseball teams resumed play at the conclusion of the first mid-season players’ strike. The first game on the schedule following the bitter strike was the All-Star Game. The National League won the game 5-4. 72,086 diehard baseball fans (a record) came out to see the game at Cleveland’s cavernous Municipal Stadium -- and welcome the players back.

1984 - Daley Thompson of Great Britain won the Olympic decathlon at the Summer Games in Los Angeles. Thompson joined Bob Mathias as the only decathletes to win back-to-back gold medals in the event.

1987 - The Football Hall of Fame in Canton, OH welcomed Larry Csonka, Len Dawson, ‘Mean’ Joe Greene, John Henry Johnson, Jim Langer, Don Maynard and Gene Upshaw into the sports shrine.

1988 - President Reagan nominated Lauro F. Cavazos to be secretary of education. Cavazos was the first Hispanic in U.S. history to be named to a cabinet position. On Sep 20, 1988, he was unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate. President George Bush (I) asked him to continue as Secretary following the Nov 1988 election and he remained in that position until resigning in December 1990.

1995 - Jerry Garcia, 53-year-old guitarist and co-founder of the Grateful Dead, died at a Northern California residential drug treatment center. Cause of death was a heart attack.

1999 - “She meant everything to me,” said actor William Shatner after the death of his wife, Nerine. He had found her dead in the swimming pool of their Studio City, California home. “My beautiful wife is dead. She meant everything to me. Her laughter, her tears and her joy will remain with me the rest of my life.”

1999 - “On a grand night for hitters, pitchers got slammed,” as AP sports writer Ronald Blum put it, “for the first time in 129 years of major league baseball, five grand slams were hit in one day.” 1) Fernando Tatis (St. Louis Cardinals), 2) Jose Vidro (Montreal Expos), 3) Mike Lowell (Florida Marlins), 4) Bernie Williams (NY Yankees) ... 5) Jay Buhner of the Seattle Mariners, being the last to hit the slam, actually set the record.

Those Were the Days: Current Issues

Birthdays - August 9
1593 - Isaac (Isaak) Walton (fishing expert, author: The Compleat Angler; died Dec 15, 1683)

1901 - Charles Farrell (actor: My Little Margie; developer [w/Ralph Bellamy]: Palm Springs Racquet Club; died May 6, 1990)

1902 - Zino (Rene) Francescatti (French concert violinist; died Sep 17, 1991)

1919 - Ralph (George ‘Major’) Houk (baseball: catcher: NY Yankees [World Series: 1947, 1952]; manager: Boston Red Sox, Detroit Tigers, NY Yankees; died Jul 21, 2010)

1925 - Len Sutton (auto racer: finished second to teammate, Rodger Ward at 1962 Indianapolis 500 [by 11.52 seconds]; died Dec 4, 2006)

1927 - Robert Shaw (actor: Battle of the Bulge, Black Sunday, The Deep, Force 10 from Navarone, From Russia with Love, A Man for All Seasons, Jaws; died Aug 28, 1978)

1928 - Bob Cousy (Basketball Hall of Famer: Boston Celtics: NBA MVP [1957]; autobiography: The Killer Instinct; actor: Blue Chips)

1931 - Gene ‘Big Daddy’ Lipscomb (Eugene Allen Lipscomb) football [defensive tackle]: U.S. Marine Corps; NFL: LA Rams, Baltimore Colts, Pittsburgh Steelers; died May 10, 1963

1934 - Merle Kilgore (Songwriter Hall of Famer: Ring of Fire, More and More, Johnny Reb, Wolverton Mountain, Dear Mama, Love Has Made You Beautiful, Fast Talking Louisiana Man; died Feb 6, 2005)

1936 - Julian (Manuel Liranzo) Javier (baseball: SL Cardinals [all-star: 1963, 1968/World Series: 1964, 1967, 1968], Cincinnati Reds [World Series: 1972])

1938 - Rod Laver (tennis champion: Australian Open [1960, 1962, 1969], French Open [1962, 1969], Wimbledon [1961, 1962, 1968, 1969], U.S. Open [1962, 1969])

1939 - Billy Henderson (singer: group: Spinners: Could It Be I’m Falling in Love, One of a Kind [Love Affair], The Rubberband Man, They Just Can’t Stop It [Games People Play]; died Feb 2, 2007)

1939 - Claude (Wilson) Osteen (baseball: pitcher: Cincinnati Redlegs, Cincinnati Reds, Washington Senators, LA Dodgers {World Series: 1965, 1966/all-star: 1967, 1970, 1973], Houston Astros, SL Cardinals, Chicago White Sox)

1942 - Tommie (Lee) Agee (baseball: Cleveland Indians, Chicago White Sox [all-star: 1966, 1967], NY Mets [World Series: 1969], Houston Astros, SL Cardinals; died Jan 22, 2001)

1942 - David Steinberg (Emmy Award-winning comic writer: The 63rd & 64th Annual Academy Awards [1990-1991, 1991-1992]; TV host: The Music Scene; comedian: The David Steinberg Show, Second City)

1943 - Ken Norton (Boxing Hall of Famer: heavyweight boxing champ [1978])

1944 - Sam Elliott (actor: Gettysburg, Lonesome Dove, Mask, Tombstone, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, TVs Mission Impossible)

1946 - Jim Kiick (football: Miami Dolphins running back: Super Bowl VI, VII, VIII)

1949 - Ted (Lyle) Simmons (baseball: SL Cardinals [all-star: 1972, 1973, 1974, 1977, 1978, 1979}, Milwaukee Brewers [all-star: 1981, 1983/World Series: 1982], Atlanta Braves)

1951 - Steve (Steven Eugene) Swisher (baseball: catcher: Chicago Cubs [all-star: 1976], SL Cardinals, SD Padres)

1952 - John Cappelletti (football: Penn State: Heisman Trophy Winner [1973]; LA Rams, San Diego Chargers)

1957 - Melanie Griffith (actress: Working Girl, Night Moves, Smile, A Stranger Among Us, Born Yesterday, Mulholland Falls, Lolita [1997], Crazy in Alabama; actress Tippi Hedren’s daughter)

1958 - Amanda Bearse (actress: Married......with Children; director: Dharma & Greg, Veronica’s Closet)

1959 - Kurtis Blow (Walker) (rap artist; disc jockey)

1962 - John Williams (‘Hot Rod’: basketball: Tulane Univ., Cleveland Cavaliers, Phoenix Suns, Dallas Mavericks)

1963 - Whitney Houston (Grammy Award-winning singer: I Will Always Love You; Greatest Love of All, You Give Good Love, Saving All My Love for You; actress: The Bodyguard, Waiting to Exhale; died Feb 11, 2012)

1967 - Deion Sanders (football: Florida St. [All-American: [1987-1988], NFL: Atlanta Falcons, San Francisco 49ers, Dallas Cowboys, Washington Redskins; baseball: Atlanta Braves; first athlete to star in a World Series [1992] and a Super Bowl [XXIX])

1968 - Gillian Anderson (actress: The X Files, Future Fantastic, Playing by Heart, The House of Mirth)

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Chart Toppers - August 9
I’ll Be Seeing You - The Tommy Dorsey Orchestra (vocal: Frank Sinatra)
Amor - Bing Crosby
Swinging on a Star - Bing Crosby
Is You is or is You Ain’t (Ma’ Baby) - Louis Jordan

Walkin’ My Baby Back Home - Johnnie Ray
Auf Wiedersehn, Sweetheart - Vera Lynn
I’m Yours - Don Cornell
Are You Teasing Me - Carl Smith

Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polkadot Bikini - Brian Hyland
It’s Now or Never - Elvis Presley
Image of a Girl - Safaris
Please Help Me, I’m Falling - Hank Locklin

Hello, I Love You - The Doors
Classical Gas - Mason Williams
Stoned Soul Picnic - The 5th Dimension
Folsom Prison Blues - Johnny Cash

Don’t Go Breaking My Heart - Elton John & Kiki Dee
Let ’Em In - Wings
You Should Be Dancing - Bee Gees
Golden Ring - George Jones & Tammy Wynette

When Doves Cry - Prince
Ghostbusters - Ray Parker Jr.
State of Shock - Jacksons
Mama He’s Crazy - The Judds

Those were the days, my friend. We thought they‘d never end...

Comments/Corrections: TWtDfix@440fun.com

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

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