Events - July 15
971 - Sometime in the late 800s-900s, there lived a man named Swithun or Swithin. He was the Bishop of Winchester in Old England. For some unknown reason - since Bishop Swithin was not particularly famous - his remains were transferred to Winchester Cathedral on this day. It so happened that there was a heavy rainfall on this same day. Some say Bishop Swithin was angry about the move and caused the downpour. From then on, according to an old English adage, if it should rain on July 15th, it will rain for forty days thereafter. “St. Swithin’s day, gif ye do rain, for forty days it will remain; St. Swithin’s day, an ye be fair, for forty days ’twill rain nae mair.”
1876 - George Washington Bradley pitched the first no-hitter in baseball by leading St. Louis to a 2-0 win over Hartford.
1904 - The first Japanese Buddhist temple in the United States was established in Los Angeles, CA.
1912 - Jim Thorpe won the decathlon in the Olympic games in Stockholm, Sweden.
1922 - The duck-billed platypus arrived in America, direct from Australia. It was exhibited at the Bronx Zoo in New York City. For those of you who have never seen this unusual mammal, it has webbed feet, a duck’s bill, a beaver’s tail; is seal-like, yet hairy and it lays eggs. Go figure...
1940 - Robert Wadlow was 8 feet, 11-1/10 inches tall and weighed 439 pounds when he died this day -- at the age of 22.
1942 - Glenn Miller and his band recorded the classic "Jukebox Saturday Night" for Victor Records.
1952 - Singer Patti Page made her TV debut in a summer replacement series for Perry Como. The 15-minute program spotlighted Patti three times each week on CBS.
1965 - The "Mariner IV" spacecraft sent back the first close-up pictures of the planet Mars.
1965 - Comedy star Joan Rivers married Edgar Rosenberg. Edgar became a favorite target in her comedy routine on stage, TV and in recordings.
1966 - Singer Percy Sledge earned a gold record for "When a Man Loves a Woman". It was his only song to make it to number one (5/28/66) and the only one of five to break into the top ten.
1968 - ABC-TV first presented the serial, "One Life to Live".
1968 - Commercial air travel began between the United States and the U.S.S.R. with the first plane, a Soviet Aeroflot jet, landing at Kennedy International Airport in New York.
1972 - Elton John landed at the top spot on the "Billboard" album chart for the first time as "Honky Chateau" made it to the top for a five-week stay.
1973 - For the first time in two decades, a baseball pitcher won two no-hitters in a season. Nolan Ryan of the California Angels did the trick with his second no-hit victory of the season, a 6-0 romp over the Detroit Tigers. Ryan pitched his first no-hitter of the season against the Kansas City Royals on May 15th.
1978 - Bob Dylan performed before the largest open-air concert audience (for a single artist). Some 200,000 fans turned out to hear Dylan at Blackbushe Airport in England.
1981 - Steven Ford, son of former President Gerald R. Ford, appeared in the much publicized seduction scene of "The Young and the Restless" on CBS-TV. Ford played the part of Andy, the macho maverick.
1985 - Baseball players voted to strike on August 6th if no contract was reached with baseball owners. The strike action turned out to be just a one-day interruption.
1997 - Former Miller Brewing Company executive Jerold Mackenzie was vindicated by a jury in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Mackenzie had brought a suit against Miller after the company fired him from his $95,000-a-year job for sexual harassment. He had been commenting on the "Seinfeld" episode, "The Junior Mint", where Seinfeld’s TV character can’t remember the name of his new girlfriend -- only that it rhymes with a female body part. One of Mackenzie’s female co-workers complained to the Miller human resources director after she heard Mackenzie joking about the show.
1997 - Fashion designer Gianni Versace was shot to death on the steps of his mansion in Miami Beach, Florida. Police believe Andrew Phillip Cunanan shot Versace. Cunanan committed suicide a week later on a houseboat about two miles north of the Versace mansion. Cunanan is suspected of killing four other men in a cross-country shooting spree.
Birthdays - July 15
1606 - Rembrandt (Van Rijn) (artist: 300 etchings, 1,400 drawings, 600 paintings: The Night Watch, Man with a Magnifying Glass, The Anatomy Lesson of Professor Tulp, Descent from the Cross, Rape of Ganymede; died Oct 4, 1669)
1779 - Clement Clarke Moore (poet, author: ’Twas the Night before Christmas [A Visit from St. Nicholas]; died July 10, 1863)
1867 - Maggie Lena Walker (first woman bank founder and president: opened St. Luke Penny Savings Bank [Richmond VA: Nov 2, 1903]; women's rights/black pride advocate; died Dec 15, 1934)
1905 - Dorothy Fields (lyricist: w/Cy Coleman: Sweet Charity, Seesaw; w/Jimmy McHugh: I Can’t Give You Anything But Love, I’m in the Mood for Love, On the Sunny Side of the Street; daughter of comedian Lew Fields; died Mar 28, 1974)
1913 - Cowboy (Lloyd) Copas (country singer: Alabam, Goodbye Kisses, Signed, Sealed and Delivered; killed in plane crash with singer, Patsy Cline [Mar 5, 1963])
1925 - Philip Carey (actor: The Great Sioux Massacre, Philip Marlowe, Laredo, One Life to Live, The Time Travelers, Mister Roberts; died Feb 6, 2009)
1927 - Nan Clow Martin (actress: Matters of the Heart, Goodbye Columbus, For Love of Ivy; died Mar 4, 2010)
1931 - Clive Cussler (author: Raise the Titanic, Deep Six, Sahara, Cyclops)
1933 - Julian Bream (musician: classical guitar, lute)
1935 - Donn (Alvin) Clendenon (baseball: Pittsburgh Pirates, Montreal Expos, NY Mets [World Series: 1969], SL Cardinals; died Sep 17, 2005)
1935 - Alex (Alexander G.) Karras (football: U of Iowa line backer: Outland Trophy , Detroit Lions defensive tackle: All-Pro [1960-62]; sportscaster: Monday Night Football [1974-76]; actor: Blazing Saddles, Against All Odds, Victor/Victoria, Webster; died Oct 10, 2012)
1935 - Ken Kercheval (actor: Dallas, Search for Tomorrow, Corporate Affairs, Calamity Jane)
1939 - Patrick Wayne (actor: Chill Factor, Young Guns, McClintock, Big Jake; John Wayne’s son)
1940 - Roy Winston (football: Minnesota Vikings line backer: Super Bowl IV, VIII, IX, XI)
1943 - Billy Truax (football: Dallas Cowboys tight end, Super Bowl VI)
1944 - Jan-Michael Vincent (actor: Airwolf, The Winds of War, Indecent Behavior, The World’s Greatest Athlete, Hooper, Born in East L.A.)
1945 - Peter Lewis (musician: guitar, singer: group: Moby Grape: LPs: Moby Grape, Wow, Grape Jam, Truly Fine Citizen, 20 Granite Creek, Grape Live)
1946 - Linda Ronstadt (singer: group: The Stone Poneys: Different Drum; solo: Blue Bayou, You’re No Good, When Will I Be Loved, It’s So Easy, Ooh Baby Baby, Hurt So Bad; actress: Pirates of Penzance)
1951 - Rick Kehoe (hockey: NHL: Toronto Maple Leafs, Pittsburgh Penguins: player, scout, assistant coach)
1952 - David Pack (singer: group: Ambrosia: The Biggest Part of Me)
1952 - John Stallworth (football: Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver: Super Bowl IX, X, XIII, XIV)
1960 - Willie Aames (actor: Eight is Enough, Charles in Charge, Frankenstein, Zapped!)
1961 - Lolita Davidovich (actress: Now and Then, Indictment: The McMartin Trial, For Better or Worse, Cobb, Boiling Point, Raising Cain, The Inner Circle, Recruits)
1961 - Forest Whitaker (actor: Phenomenon, Ready to Wear, The Enemy Within, Body Snatchers, Jason’s Lyric, The Crying Game, Bird, Good Morning Vietnam, Platoon, The Color of Money, Fast Times at Ridgemont High; director: Waiting to Exhale, Strapped)
1963 - Brigitte Nielsen (actress: Galaxis, Body Count, Chained Heat 2, Beverly Hills Cop 2, Cobra, Rocky 4, Red Sonja)
1973 - Brian Austin Green (actor: Knots Landing, Beverly Hills 90210, An American Summer)
Chart Toppers - July 15
Woody Woodpecker Song - The Kay Kaiser Orchestra (vocal: Gloria Wood & The Campus Kids)
You Can’t Be True, Dear - The Ken Griffin Orchestra (vocal: Jerry Wayne)
Little White Lies - Dick Haymes
Bouquet of Roses - Eddy Arnold
The Wayward Wind - Gogi Grant
My Prayer - The Platters
Hound Dog/Don’t Be Cruel - Elvis Presley
I Want You, I Need You, I Love You - Elvis Presley
I Get Around - The Beach Boys
Memphis - Johnny Rivers
Rag Doll - The 4 Seasons
My Heart Skips a Beat - Buck Owens
Lean on Me - Bill Withers
Too Late to Turn Back Now - Cornelius Brothers & Sister Rose
Brandy (You’re a Fine Girl) - Looking Glass
Made in Japan - Buck Owens
Coming Up - Paul McCartney & Wings
It’s Still Rock & Roll to Me - Billy Joel
Little Jeannie - Elton John
You Win Again - Charley Pride
The Flame - Cheap Trick
Mercedes Boy - Pebbles
Pour Some Sugar on Me - Def Lappard
Fallin’ Again - Alabama
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
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