Events - January 29
1802 - John Beckley became the first Librarian of the U.S. Congress. He was paid $2 a day. Not bad, considering in 1802 you could buy a house for $25.00 and a chicken.
1845 - "The Raven", by Edgar Allan Poe, was published for the first time in the "New York Evening Mirror". Poe took the pen name, Quarles, in signing the poem.
1861 - Kansas, the Sunflower State, entered the United States of America this day. The capital of the 34th state is Topeka. It’s easy to figure out why Kansas is the Sunflower State; it’s a toss-up as to whether Kansas has more of those huge yellow blossoms that are also the state flower, or amber waves of wheat. The state’s other nickname is, however, slightly more obscure. Kansas, the Jayhawk State, is named so because before and during the War Between the States, guerillas in the antislavery camp ... known as jayhawkers ... were extremely active in the Kansas territory. The pro- and anti-slavery groups fought such vicious battles that the state was referred to as ‘Bleeding Kansas’. Through peace and battles, the western meadowlark, the state bird, continues to sing its song ... or maybe it sings the state song: "Home on the Range". The roaming buffalo is the state animal, and the state tree is the cottonwood. Kansas, derived from the Sioux Indian word meaning ‘people of the southwind’, uses the Latin phrase ‘Ad astra per aspera’ or ‘To the stars through difficulties’ as its motto.
1924 - Carl R. Taylor of Cleveland, OH patented the ice cream cone rolling machine. Ice cream cones in Cleveland in January? Silly idea... but it took off anyway. Don’t you just love those rolled sugar cones!
1929 - The Seeing Eye was incorporated -- in Nashville, TN. Its purpose was to train dogs to guide the blind. The Seeing Eye (founded in Nashville, TN) is now located in Morristown, NJ, has matched thousands of dogs with persons who are blind or visually impaired in the U.S. and Canada.
1936 - Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner, Christy Mathewson and Walter Johnson were the first players to be elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame. It happened on this day in Cooperstown, NY.
1937 - Tommy Dorsey and his orchestra waxed the famous "Song of India" on Victor Records.
1940 - The W. Atlee Burpee Seed Company displayed the first tetraploid flowers at the New York City Flower Show; and a marigold treated with colchicine produced a flower 1-1/2 times its original size. You green-thumbers out there will soon receive a pop quiz on this, so, please, reread it and pay close attention. Thank you.
1945 - Lionel Barrymore became host of the "Lux Radio Theatre" on radio this day. Actually, he replaced the previous host. Some guy named Cecil B. DeMille.
1949 - The ship, "The Newport News", was commissioned as the first air-conditioned naval ship -- in Virginia.
1956 - One of the last of radio’s popular series programs, "Indictment", debuted. The program, on CBS radio, stayed on the air for three years.
1963 - The first members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame were announced in Canton, Ohio. The Hall of Fame building officially opened on Sep 7, 1963 with 17 charter inductees: Sammy Baugh, Bert Bell, Joe Carr, Earl (Dutch) Clark, Harold (Red) Grange, George Halas, Mel Hein, Wilbur (Pete) Henry, Robert (Cal) Hubbard, Don Hutson, Earl (Curly) Lambeau, Tim Mara, George Preston Marshall, John (Blood) McNally, Bronko Nagurski, Ernie Nevers and Jim Thorpe.
1966 - "Sweet Charity", with Gwen Verdon, opened at the Palace Theatre in New York City. The musical, by Neil Simon, was an adaptation of the Federico Fellini film, "Notti di Cabiria". The play ran for 608 performances. In 1969, Hollywood produced a big-budget version of the Broadway musical starring Shirley MacLaine.
1973 - Johnny Rivers received a gold record for the hit single, "Rockin’ Pneumonia and the Boogie Woogie Flu". As is tradition, Rivers removed the fragile gold disk from the wooden frame and, as he was putting it on his stereo, had a ferocious sneezing fit and never did find out how his song sounded in solid gold.
1977 - From the Do You Remember When file, this note: Rose Royce earned the #1 spot on the music charts with "Car Wash", from the movie of the same name. The song stayed at the peak of the pop charts for one week before its popularity began to drain away...
1984 - The East All-Stars defeated the West All-Stars, for a record, fifth straight year in the NBA’s All-Star Game. This game went into overtime (the third time in the game’s history). Isaiah Thomas of the Detroit Pistons was named Most Valuable Player in the 154-145 win.
1985 - The Dow Jones Industrial Average peaked at a new high of 1,292.62, eclipsing the record set on November 29, 1983.
1987 - For artists everywhere, this note from the So Now We Know Department: The famous smile of Mona Lisa, according to "Physician’s Weekly", was caused by a “...facial paralysis resulting from a swollen nerve behind the ear.” How about that! Bet Leonardo da Vinci would have been impressed. Modern medicine at its finest. That will be $54 for the visit. Next, please...
1993 - U.S. President Bill Clinton announced that he was ordering the draft of a formal directive to end the longstanding ban on homosexuals in the U.S. military.
1995 - Super Bowl XXIX (at Miami): San Francisco 49ers 49, San Diego Chargers 26. 49ers’ QB Steve Young (MVP) threw six (a record) TD passes and directed an offense that generated seven TDs, 28 first downs and 455 total yards. The 49ers were the first team to win five Super Bowls. Tickets: $200.00.
1998 - A bomb exploded outside the New Woman, All Women Health Care Clinic in Birmingham, Alabama. The explosion killed Robert Sanderson, an off-duty police officer working as a security guard. Emily Lyons, a nurse, was critically injured. Police captured the bomber, Eric Robert Rudolph, on May 31, 2003.
2001 - U.S. President George Bush (II) established the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives.
2002 - In his first State of the Union Address, U.S. President George W. Bush (II) said terrorists were threatening the U.S. He warned of “an axis of evil,” consisting of North Korea, Iran and Iraq.
2002 - Actor Harold Russell, who received two Oscars for his sensitive portrayal of a disabled veteran in The Best Years of Our Lives died in Needham, Mass. He was 88 years old.
2003 - AOL Time Warner posted a record $98.7 billion loss, the biggest in U.S. corporate history. It included a $45.5 billion write down on the value of AOL. AOL Time Warner also announced the resignation of vice chairman Ted Turner.
2004 - Israel released more than 420 prisoners in a long-awaited swap with the Lebanese guerrilla group Hezbollah in exchange for an Israeli businessman and the bodies of three Israeli soldiers.
2005 - Clint Eastwood was named best director of 2004 by the Directors Guild of America for his his boxing-melodrama Million Dollar Baby.
2006 - ABC World News Tonight co-anchor Bob Woodruff and cameraman Doug Vogt were seriously injured by an improvised explosive device near Taji, Iraq.
2007 - Lauren Nelson was crowned Miss America on this day. It was the second year in a row that a Miss Oklahoma had won. (Jennifer Berry was crowned Miss America in 2006.)
2008 - Senator John McCain defeated former Massachusetts Gov. >Mitt Romney (36-31 percent) in Florida’s Republican primary. The Democratic race, won by Hillary Clinton, was moot because Democratic Party rules forbade the state from holding its primary before February 5.
Birthdays - January 29
1736 - Thomas Paine (American revolutionary leader, political philosopher: Common Sense, The Age of Reason, The Crisis: “These are the times that try men’s souls.”; died Jun 8, 1809)
1843 - William McKinley (25th U.S. President [1897-1901]; assassinated six months after the start of his second term: Sep 14, 1901)
1860 - Anton Chekhov (short story writer: The Party, The Darling; playwright: The Cherry Orchard, The Three Sisters, Uncle Vanya; died Jul 15, 1904)
1874 - John Davison Rockefeller Jr. (industrialist: founder of Standard Oil Co.; Rockefeller Foundation; died May 11, 1960)
1880 - W.C. (William Claude) Fields (Dukenfield) (“Ah, yes...”: entertainer: films: Pool Sharks, My Little Chickadee [w/Mae West], The Bank Dick, Never Give a Sucker an Even Break; famous lines: “Doctors say don’t worry about your heart -- it will last as long as you live.”, “It was a woman who drove me to drink and I never even thanked her.”; passed away Dec 25, 1946)
1906 - Joe Primeau (Hockey Hall of Fame player and coach: Toronto Maple Leafs: only coach to win Memorial Cup, Allan Cup and Stanley Cup; died May 14, 1989)
1913 - Victor (John) Mature (actor: The Robe, Samson and Delilah, The Las Vegas Story, Song of the Islands, After the Fox; died Aug 4, 1999)
1918 - John Forsythe (Freund) (actor: Bachelor Father, Charlie’s Angels, Dynasty, To Rome with Love, The Powers That Be, See How They Run, The Miss and Missiles, The John Forsythe Show, And Justice for All, Scrooged; TV host: I Witness Video; died Apr 1, 2010)
1918 - Bill (William Joseph) ‘Specs’ Rigney (‘The Cricket’: baseball: NY Giants [all-star: 1948/World Series: 1951]; died Feb 20, 2001)
1923 - Paddy (Sidney) Chayefsky (Academy Award-winning playwright: Marty ; Paint Your Wagon, Altered States, Network; died Aug 1, 1981)
1934 - Noel Harrison (actor: The Best of Enemies, The Girl from U.N.C.L.E., The Murder in China Basin; died Oct 19, 2013)
1939 - Bobby (Donald) Bolin (baseball: pitcher: SF Giants [World Series: 1962], Boston Red Sox, Milwaukee Brewers)
1939 - Germaine Greer (feminist author: Daddy We Hardly Knew You, The Change)
1940 - Katharine Ross (actress: The Graduate, The Final Countdown, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, The Singing Nun, The Colbys)
1942 - Claudine Longet (singer: LPs: Claudine, The Look of Love, Love is Blue, Colours; actress: McHale’s Navy, Hogan’s Heroes, The Party, How to Steal An Airplane, Only One Day Left Before Tomorrow; formerly married to Andy Williams)
1945 - Donna Maria Caponi (Young) (golf champion: U.S. Open [1969, 1970], Nabisco Dinah Shore , Du Maurier Classic , LPGA [1979, 1981]; sportscaster: ABC Sports)
1945 - Tom Selleck (Emmy Award-winning actor: Magnum, P.I. [1983-1984], Three Men and a Baby, Mr. Baseball, Runaway, Lassiter, Quigley Down Under, 3 Men and a Little Lady, Running Mates)
1945 - Wayne Stephenson (hockey: NHL: SL Blues, Philadelphia Flyers, Washington Capitals)
1947 - David Byron (singer: groups: Uriah Heep: Gypsy, Salisbury, July Morning, Easy Livin’; Stalkers and Spice; died Feb 28, 1985)
1949 - Jim (James Vernon) Tyrone (baseball: Chicago Cubs, Oakland Athletics)
1950 - Ann Jillian (Jurate Nauseda) (actress: Ann Jillian, It’s a Living, Jennifer Slept Here, Hazel)
1952 - Billy Harris (hockey: NHL: NY Islanders, LA Kings, Toronto Maple Leafs)
1952 - Tommy Ramone (Erdelyi) (musician: drums, songwriter: group: The Ramones: I Wanna Be Sedated, Teenage Lobotomy, Now I Wanna Sniff Some Glue, Sheena is a Punk Rocker, Chinese Rock)
1954 - Oprah Winfrey (Emmy Award-winning talk show host: Oprah Winfrey [1986, 1990-1994]; actress: The Color Purple, Native Son, The Women of Brewster Place)
1960 - Greg Louganis (diver: Olympic gold medalist: [1984, 1988])
1961 - Eddie Jackson (musician: bass, singer: group: Queensryche: LPs: Queensryche, The Warning, Rage for Order, Operation: Mindcrime, Empire, The Promised Land, Operation: Livecrime)
1964 - Roddy Frame (musician: guitar, singer, songwriter: group: Aztec Camera: Oblivious, Walk Out to Winter, All I Need is Everything, Birth of the True, Knife, Just like the USA; solo LP: Love)
1968 - Edward Burns (actor: The Groomsmen, A Sound of Thunder, Looking for Kitty, Life or Something Like It, 27 Dresses, One Missed Call)
1968 - Aeneas Williams (Pro Football Hall of Famer: Southern Univ; NFL: Phoenix/Arizona Cardinals, SL Rams)
1975 - Sara Gilbert (Sara Rebecca Abeles) (actress: Roseanne; sister of actress Melissa Gilbert and actor Jonathan Gilbert)
1977 - Sam Jaeger (actor: Parenthood, Friday Night Lights, Advantage Hart, Take Me Home)
1979 - Andrew Keegan (actor: 10 Things I Hate About You, Independence Day, Camp Nowhere, Thunder Alley, 7th Heaven, Party of Five)
1980 - Katie Lohmann (Playboy magazine Playmate, actress: Room 6, Headache, National Lampoon Presents Dorm Daze, The Hot Chick, The Model Solution, Bubble Boy, Tomcats)
1985 - Marc Gasol (basketball [center]: NBA: Memphis Grizzies [2008– ])
Chart Toppers - January 29
A Little Bird Told Me - Evelyn Knight
Far Away Places - Margaret Whiting
Buttons and Bows - Dinah Shore
I Love You So Much It Hurts - Jimmy Wakely
Singing the Blues - Guy Mitchell
Don’t Forbid Me - _Pat Boone
Jamaica Farewell - Harry Belafonte
Singing the Blues - Marty Robbins
Downtown - Petula Clark
You’ve Lost that Lovin’ Feelin’ - The Righteous Brothers
The Name Game - Shirley Ellis
You’re the Only World I Know - Sonny James
Superstition - Stevie Wonder
Crocodile Rock - Elton John
Your Mama Don’t Dance - Kenny Loggins & Jim Messina
(Old Dogs-Children And) Watermelon Wine - Tom T. Hall
(Just Like) Starting Over - John Lennon
Love on the Rocks - Neil Diamond
The Tide is High - Blondie
9 to 5 - Dolly Parton
Two Hearts - Phil Collins
When I’m with You - Sheriff
When the Children Cry - White Lion
Deeper Than the Holler - Randy Travis
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.