Events - June 19
1846 - The first organized baseball game was played on this day. The location was Hoboken, New Jersey. The New York Baseball Club defeated the Knickerbocker Club, 23 to 1. This first game was only four innings long. The New York Nine, as the winners were known, must have really studied the rules to have twenty-three runs batted in. The rules had been formulated just one year earlier by a Mr. Alexander Cartwright, Jr.
1865 - It took more than two-and-a-half years after Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation went into effect for Union troops to land in Galveston, Texas. They carried the message of freedom, the resolution of the Civil War between the States, to the many slaves throughout Texas. Union Major General Gordon Granger read General Order #3: “The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of personal rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired labor. The freedmen are advised to remain quietly at their present homes and work for wages. They are informed that they will not be allowed to collect at military posts and that they will not be supported in idleness either there or elsewhere.” The slaves rejoiced with cheers and tears as they learned of their liberation, calling their “day of deliverance,” Juneteenth, a day still celebrated by black families and communities throughout the world.
1911 - The first motion-picture censorship board was established -- in Pennsylvania.
1912 - The United States government adopted a new rule for all working folks. It established an 8-hour work day. Watch that lunch break, though. You never know if someone from the government might be clocking you...
1934 - The U.S. Congress established the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The task of the commission was to regulate radio and (later) TV broadcasting.
1936 - Max Schmeling knocked out Joe Louis in the 12th round of their heavyweight boxing match. The German boxer earned his victory at Yankee Stadium in New York.
1943 - The National Football League approved the merger of the Philadelphia Eagles and the Pittsburgh Steelers (the Steagles), a team that lasted one 5-4-1 season; but turned down approval of a similar merger of the Chicago Cardinals and the Bears. The following year the Steelers merged with the Cardinals, another one season combo. The reason teams were merging in the 1940s: so many men were in the armed forces due to WWII, football players were at a premium.
1946 - The first championship prizefight to be televised was seen by boxing fans. Joe Louis tangled with Billy Conn in New York City. To see the fight in person, incidentally, would have cost you $100.
1952 - CBS-TV debuted one of television’s most popular hits, "I’ve Got a Secret". Garry Moore was the first host, from 1952 to 1964. Steve Allen was next (1964 to 1967) and moderated a syndicated version in the 1972-1973 season. Bill Cullen hosted the attempted comeback of the show in 1976. Panelists included Allen’s wife, Jayne Meadows; Bill Cullen, Henry Morgan, Betsy Palmer, Faye Emerson, Melville Cooper and Orson Bean.
1965 - "I Can’t Help Myself", by The Four Tops, topped the pop and R&B charts. The Motown group got their second and only other number one hit with "Reach Out I’ll Be There" in 1966. Their other hits include: "It’s the Same Old Song", "Standing in the Shadows of Love", "Bernadette" and "Ain’t No Woman (Like the One I’ve Got)" (their only million seller). The group called Motown (Detroit, MI) home and got their start in 1953 as the Four Aims. Levi Stubbs, Renaldo ‘Obie’ Benson, Lawrence Payton and Abdul ‘Duke’ Fakir placed 24 hits on the charts from 1964 to 1988. They first recorded as The Four Tops for Leonard Chess and Chess Records in 1956; then went to Red Top and Columbia before signing with Berry Gordy’s Motown label in 1963. The Tops, who had no personnel changes in their more than 35 years together were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990.
1973 - Pete Rose of the Cincinnati Reds reached the 2,000-career-hit plateau. The milestone came a decade after his first professional baseball appearance in Cincinnati.
1973 - National Hockey League record-holder Gordie Howe of the Detroit Red Wings jumped leagues to join his sons, Mark and Marty, on the Houston Aeros (of the rival World Hockey Association). In doing so, Howe accepted a $1,000,000, four-year contract.
1978 - Whether you're a cat lover or not has nothing to do with whether you chuckle at the antics of the famous, fat, lazy, lasagna-eating, snide cat named Garfield. Garfield came into the world on this day by way of the talented pen of cartoonist Jim Davis. Readers of 41 newspapers throughout the U.S. were the lucky first-time readers of the Garfield strip. There are now over 220-million folks who read Garfield every day in over 2500 newspapers worldwide.
1981 - "Superman II" set the all-time, one-day record for theatre box-office receipts. Moviegoers forked over $5.5 million to see Christopher Reeve as the man of steel. The three-day record was also shattered on June 21st, 1981, when a total gross of $14 million was collected.
1985 - Take heart, duffers! Angelo Spagnolo shot an incredible 257 -- that’s two-hundred, fifty-seven strokes -- to win the Worst Avid Golfer’s Tournament held at Ponte Vedra, FL. He earned the title of America’s Worst Recreational Hacker for the effort. He lost 60 golf balls, got a 66 on the 17th hole, and hit 27 balls into the water!
1992 - Batman returned in "Batman Returns". He was welcomed by Americans with their wallets open ($45.69 million) that first weekend.
1998 - "The X Files: Fight the Future" opened in the U.S. David Duchovny (FBI Special Agent Fox Mulder) and Gillian Anderson (Agent Dana Scully) starred. And they fought despicable demons who were employed by the government, just as they have had to do so often in the TV series. "The X Files: Fight the Future" opened in 2,629 theaters nationwide, grossing a not-so-despicable $30.14 million the first weekend.
1998 - 28-year-old Rick Schroder signed on with ABC’s "NYPD Blue" as Detective Danny Sorenson. Young Schroder/Sorenson stepped into the opening created by the painful death of Detective Bobby Simone/Jimmy Smits.
1999 - Horror king/author Stephen King was run down from behind by a van while walking on the shoulder of a road near his house in Maine. Motorist Brian Smith apparently lost control of his Dodge Caravan (he said his dog distracted him). King suffered a collapsed lung, 2 fractures of his right leg below the knee, a broken right hip, a fractured pelvis, 2 broken ribs and a scalp laceration. Now, that's a horror story!
Birthdays - June 19
1623 - Blaise Pascal (scientist, philosopher: Provincial Letters; died August 19, 1662)
1856 - Elbert Hubbard (author: A Message to Garcia, Little Journeys; founder: Roycroft Press; lost his life aboard the ill-fated Lusitania [May 7, 1915])
1881 - (James J.) Jimmy Walker (politician: New York City mayor [1926-1932]; died Nov 18, 1946)
1897 - Moe Howard (Moses Horowitz) (actor: one of the original Three Stooges; Dr. Death, Seeker of Souls, It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World; died May 4, 1975)
1902 - Guy (Gaetano) Lombardo (bandleader: The Royal Canadians: “The most beautiful music this side of heaven.”: Auld Lang Syne, The Third Man Theme; died Nov 5, 1977)
1903 - Lou (Henry Louis) Gehrig (‘The Iron Horse’: Baseball Hall of Fame first baseman: NY Yankees [World Series: 1926, 1927, 1928, 1932, 1936, 1937, 1938/all-star: 1933, 1934, 1935, 1936, 1937, 1938, 1939]; played 2,130 consecutive games; drove in 100 runs 13 seasons in a row; topped 150 RBI’s on seven occasions; first 20th century player to hit 4 consecutive homers in one game; his uniform [No. 4] was the first to be retired; died June 02, 1941)
1905 - Mildred Natwick (actress: Dangerous Liaisons, Barefoot in the Park, The Snoop Sisters, Tammy and the Bachelor; died Oct 25, 1994)
1906 - Earl W. Bascom (rodeo showman and inventor: first side-delivery rodeo chute, first hornless bronc saddle, first one-handed bareback rigging; died Aug 28, 1995)
1910 - Abe Fortas (U.S. Supreme Court Justice [1965-69]: resigned in 1969 after published reports that he had accepted lecture fees and a legal retainer while serving on the Court; died Apr 5, 1982)
1912 - Martin Gabel (actor: Smile Jenny You’re Dead, Lady in Cement; TV game show panelist: What’s My Line?; died May 22, 1986)
1921 - Louis Jourdan (Gendre) (actor: Gigi, Three Coins in the Fountain, The VIPs, Columbo: Murder Under Glass, Octopussy; died Feb 14, 2015)
1928 - Tommy DeVito (singer: group: The Four Seasons: Sherry, Big Girls Don’t Cry, Walk like a Man, Rag Doll)
1928 - Nancy Marchand (actress: The Sopranos, Lou Grant, Brain Donors, The Naked Gun, North and South Book 2; died June 18, 2000)
1930 - Gena Rowlands (actress: Peyton Place, A Woman under the Influence, Night on Earth; daughter of Wisconsin State Senator)
1932 - Pier Angeli (Anna Pierangeli) (actress: Battle of the Bulge, One Step to Hell, The Silver Chalice, S.O.S. Pacific; died Sep 10, 1971)
1932 - Marisa Pavan (actress: Diary of Anne Frank, The Rose Tattoo, What Price Glory?, The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit)
1938 - Bob (Robert Thomas) Aspromonte (baseball: Brooklyn Dodgers, LA Dodgers, Houston Colt .45’s, Houston Astros, Atlanta Braves, NY Mets)
1939 - Al Wilson (musician: drummer, singer: Show and Tell; died Apr 21, 2008)
1942 - Spanky (Elaine) McFarlane (singer: group: Spanky and Our Gang: Sunday Will Never Be the Same, Lazy Day, Like to Get to Know You, Give a Damn)
1947 - Walt McKechnie (hockey: NHL: Minnesota North Stars, California Golden Seals, Boston Bruins, Detroit Redwings, Washington Capitals, Cleveland Barons, Toronto Maple Leafs, Colorado Rockies, Detroit Red Wings)
1947 - Salman Rushdie (author: The Jaguar Smile, Midnight’s Children, The Satanic Verses)
1948 - Phylicia (Allen) Rashad (Tony Award-winning actress: A Raisin in the Sun; TV: The Cosby Show, One Life to Live, Murder, She Wrote: The Last Free Man; dancer Debbie Allen’s sister; married to football announcer Ahmad Rashad)
1949 - Jerry Reuss (baseball: pitcher: SL Cardinals, Houston Astros, Pittsburgh Pirates [all-star: 1975], LA Dodgers [all-star:1980/World Series: 1981], California Angels, Cincinnati Reds, Chicago White Sox, Milwaukee Brewers)
1951 - Ann Wilson (singer: group: Heart: Crazy on You, Magic Man, Barracuda, Straight On)
1953 - Larry Dunn (musician: keyboards: group: Earth, Wind & Fire: Shining Star, Sing a Song, Got to Get You into My Life, After the Love Has Gone, Boogie Wonderland, Let’s Groove)
1954 - (Mary) Kathleen Turner (actress: Body Heat, Peggy Sue Got Married, Romancing the Stone, The Jewel of the Nile, Serial Mom, Naked in New York, House of Cards, Accidental Tourist, The War of the Roses, The Doctors, The Virgin Suicides; voice of Jessica Rabbit in Roger Rabbit)
1959 - Mark DeBarge (musician: trumpet, sax: group: DeBarge: Rhythm of the Night)
1961 - Alison Moyet (singer: group: Yazoo: Only You, Don’t Go; solo: LPs: Alf, Raindancing, Hoodoo, Essex)
1962 - Paula Abdul (singer: Forever Your Girl, Straight Up, Opposites Attract, Promises of a New Day; actress: The Waiting Game, Mr. Rock ’n’ Roll: The Alan Freed Story; dancer: Laker Girl; TV talent judge: American Idol: The Search for a Superstar)
1967 - Mia Sara (actress: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Timecop, Caroline at Midnight, Bullet to Beijing)
1972 - Robin Tunney (actress: The Craft, Encino Man, Empire Records, Niagara, Niagara, Vertical Limit)
1975 - Poppy Montgomery (actress: Unforgettable, Blonde, Devil in a Blue Dress, Dead Man on Campus, The Beat)
Chart Toppers - June 19
The Gypsy - The Ink Spots
All Through the Day - Perry Como
They Say It’s Wonderful - Frank Sinatra
New Spanish Two Step - Bob Wills
Little Things Mean a Lot - Kitty Kallen
Three Coins in the Fountain - The Four Aces
Hernando’s Hideaway - Archie Bleyer
I Don’t Hurt Anymore - Hank Snow
I Can’t Stop Loving You - Ray Charles
It Keeps Right on a-Hurtin’ - Johnny Tillotson
(The Man Who Shot) Liberty Valance - Gene Pitney
She Thinks I Still Care - George Jones
The Long and Winding Road/For You Blue - The Beatles
Which Way You Goin’ Billy? - The Poppy Family
Get Ready - Rare Earth
Hello Darlin’ - Conway Twitty
Shadow Dancing - Andy Gibb
Baker Street - Gerry Rafferty
It’s a Heartache - Bonnie Tyler
Two More Bottles of Wine - Emmylou Harris
On My Own - Patti LaBelle & Michael McDonald
I Can’t Wait - Nu Shooz
There’ll Be Sad Songs (To Make You Cry) - Billy Ocean
Life’s Highway - Steve Wariner
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.