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March 6

Events - March 6
1646 - We go waaaay back in time to when Joseph Jenkes of Massachusetts received the first machine patent. Trouble was, though he had patent in hand, he didn’t quite have a clue as to just what machine he patented, since there were no machines back then. His supposed reply to getting the patent, anyway, was, “Hey! Thanks!”

1808 - The first college orchestra was founded -- at Harvard University in Cambridge, MA. So, strike up the band today!

1836 - This was the last day of a thirteen-day siege by Mexico’s dictator, Santa Anna and his thousand-man army. They defeated a little band of Texas volunteers trying to defend the Alamo. The last of these 189 brave men (including Davy Crockett) died on March 6, holed up in the Alamo. Their sacrifice for Texas’ liberty did not go unnoticed. 46 days later, with the battle cry, “Remember the Alamo,” General Sam Houston and his Texans captured Santa Anna and finished the job started at the Alamo. Texas gained its independence.

1931 -Without a Song was recorded by Lawrence Tibbett for Victor Records. This wonderful melody came from the film, The Southerner and has been a hit for many, including Willie Nelson, Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett.

1941 - Les Hite and his orchestra recorded "The World is Waiting for the Sunrise" on Bluebird Records. The instrumental became Hite’s most popular work. A decade later, Les Paul and Mary Ford added a vocal to the tune, making it one of their biggest-selling hit songs.

1947 - The "USS The Newport News" was launched from a shipbuilding yard at Newport News, VA. It was the first air-conditioned naval ship.

1948 - Ralph Edwards created a quiz on radio’s "Truth or Consequences" called "The Walking Man". After ten weeks of guesses by contestants playing the game, it was finally revealed that Jack Benny was The Walking Man.

1962 - Frank Sinatra recorded his final session for Capitol Records in Hollywood. Sinatra had been recording for his own record label, Reprise, for two years. His final side on Capitol was "I Gotta Right to Sing the Blues", with Skip Martin’s orchestra.

1957 - The former British African colonies of the Gold Coast and Togoland became the independent state of Ghana.

1964 - Tom O’Hara ran the mile in 3 minutes, 56.4 seconds, setting a world indoor record in Chicago, IL. And he still didn’t beat that speedy dromedary.

1976 - The Waylon & Willie (Jennings and Nelson) song, "Good Hearted Woman", started the last of three weeks at the top of the country music charts. Waylon and Willie wrote the song in 1969 during a poker game in Ft. Worth, TX. According to Jennings, “I’d been reading an ad for Ike and Tina Turner and it said, ‘Tina Turner singing songs about good-hearted women loving good-timing men.’ I thought, ‘What a great country song title that is!’” He was mighty correct, y’all.

1981 - Walter Cronkite, the dean of American television newscasters, said “And that’s the way it is” for the final time, as he closed the "CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite". An audience estimated at 17,000,000 viewers saw ‘the most trusted man in America’ sign-off. Cronkite retired after more than 30 years in broadcasting. He was replaced by Dan Rather at the anchor desk.

1982 - The most points scored by two teams in the National Basketball Association made history. San Antonio beat Milwaukee 171-166 in three overtime periods to set the mark.

1983 - The United States Football League began its first season of pro football competition. Fans didn’t support the new spring league opposition to the National Football League and, as a result, team names such as the Bandits, Breakers, Blitz, Invaders and Wranglers were relatively short-lived. The league was forced to fold amid controversy, low fan acceptance and lower television ratings. It was not long before players began to scramble for spots in the NFL. The USFL lasted two seasons.

1985 - Yul Brynner played his famous role as the king in "The King and I" in his 4,500th performance in the musical. The actor, age 64, opened the successful production on Broadway in 1951.

1987 - 135 people died after the British ferry Herald of Free Enterprise capsized off the Belgian port of Zeebrugge. Open bow doors were blamed for the disaster.

1991 - Following Iraq’s capitulation in the Persian Gulf conflict, U.S. President George Bush (I) told a cheering joint session of Congress that “aggression is defeated. The war is over.”

1997 - Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II launched the first official royal Web site.

2000 - Eric Clapton was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and became the first musician to be inducted three times. Clapton was first honored as a member of The Yardbirds in 1992 and with Cream in 1993. Among other honorees this day were James Taylor, Bonnie Raitt and Earth, Wind & Fire.

2003 - U.S. President George Bush (II) warned that he was prepared to go to war with Iraq, with or without U.N. backing.

2004 - Thousands of women marched through Paris pressing for equal rights for women and showing support for a law banning Islamic head scarves in public schools.

2006 - President Vladimir Putin signed a measure into law that allows the Russian military to shoot down hijacked planes. It was one of a series of laws passed following terrorist attacks.

2007 - Winemaker Ernest Gallo died at his home in Modesto, CA at 97 years of age. Gallo parlayed a few thousand dollars and a wine recipe from a public library into the world’s largest winemaking empire.

Those Were the Days: Current Issues

Birthdays - March 6
1475 - Michelangelo (de Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni) (Renaissance artist: Sistine Chapel ceiling; sculptor: David; architect: St. Peter’s [Rome]; died Feb 18, 1564)

1619 - Cyrano De Bergerac (French soldier, author: The States and Empires of the Sun; subject of famous play whose title bears his name; died July 28, 1655)

1806 - Elizabeth Barrett Browning (Moulton) (poet: Sonnets from the Portuguese - “How do I Love Thee? Let Me Count the Ways.”; Robert Browning’s wife; died June 29, 1861)

1885 - Ring Lardner (sports reporter, humorist, writer: Alibi Ike, You Know Me Al, Elmer the Great, June Moon; died Sep 25, 1933)

1905 - Bob Wills (fiddler, composer, bandleader: Light Crust Doughboys, Bob Wills and his Texas Playboys: San Antonio Rose; inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame [Early Influence category: Mar 15, 1999]; died May 13, 1975)

1906 - Lou Costello (Louis Francis Cristillo) (comedian, actor [Abbott & Costello]: Who’s on First?; died Mar 3, 1959)

1923 - Ed McMahon (radio/TV announcer, pitchman: The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson, Star Search, The Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon, Budweiser spots, TV’s Most Hilarious Bloopers; died Jun 23, 2009)

1923 - Wes (John Leslie) Montgomery (jazz composer, musician: guitar: Windy, Goin’ Out of My Head, Wes’ Tune, Sunny; albums: The Wes Montgomery Trio, The Incredible Jazz Guitar of Wes Montgomery, The Montgomery Brothers [w/his brothers Buddy and Monk Montgomery]; died June 15, 1968)

1926 - Alan Greenspan (economist: chairperson: U.S. Federal Reserve Board [1987-2006])

1927 - (Leroy) Gordon Cooper (U.S. astronaut: one of original seven Mercury astronauts [orbited earth 22 times aboard Faith 7 (Mercury 9): May 15, 1963]; flew on Gemini 5 [1965], set flight record of 190 hours, 55 minutes, orbiting the earth 120 times; died Oct 4, 2004)

1928 - Gabriel Garcia-Marquez (author: A Hundred Years of Solitude, Love in the Time of Cholera; died Apr 17, 2014)

1937 - Valentina Tereshkova-Nikolaeva (Russian cosmonaut)

1939 - Cookie (Octavio Victor Rivas) Rojas (baseball: Cincinnati Reds, Philadelphia Phillies [all-star: 1965], KC Royals [all-star: 1971-1974], SL Cardinals)

1941 - Willie (Wilver Dornel) Stargell (Baseball Hall-of-Famer: Pittsburgh Pirates [all-star: 1964-1966, 1971-1973, 1978/World Series: 1971, 1979: MVP/Baseball Writer’s Award: 1979/AP Male Athlete of the Year: 1979]; 475 career homers: lead N.L. twice [48: 1971, 44: 1973]; drove in 1,540 runs, scored 1,195, 2,232 hits, lifetime batting average of .282; died Apr 9, 2001)

1942 - Ben Murphy (actor: The Winds of War, The Chisholms, Time Walker, Alias Smith and Jones, Yours, Mine and Ours)

1944 - Mary Wilson (singer: group: The Supremes: Where Did Our Love Go, Baby Love, Come See About Me, Stop! In the Name of Love, Back in My Arms Again, I Hear a Symphony, Nothing But Heartaches, You Can’t Hurry Love, You Keep Me Hanging On, My World is Empty Without You)

1945 - Hugh Grundy (musician: drums: group: The Zombies: She’s Not There, You Make Me Feel Good, Tell Her No, She’s Coming Home, I Want You Back Again, Time of the Seasons)

1945 - Bob Trumpy (football: Cincinnati; broadcaster)

1947 - Kiki Dee (Pauline Matthews) (singer: Don’t Go Breaking My Heart, Amoureuse, [You Don’t Know] How Glad I Am, Star)

1947 - Dick Fosbury (Olympic Gold Medalist and record holder: high jump [7’, 4 1/4", <1968]; National Track & Field Hall of Famer: 1st to break 7’ indoors; invented the Fosbury Flop high jump technique)

1947 - Rob Reiner (Emmy Award-winning Best Supporting Actor/Comedy Series: All In the Family [1973-74, 1977-78], Postcards from the Edge, Sleepless in Seattle; director: When Harry Met Sally, This is Spinal Tap, The Princess Bride, A Few Good Men; Carl’s son)

1959 - Tom Arnold (actor: Roseanne, The Jackie Thomas Show, Tom, True Lies)

1962 - Alison Nicholas (golf champ: LPGA Corning Classic, PING-AT&T Wireless Services LPGA Golf Championship [1995]; U.S. Women's Open [1997]; Hawaiian Ladies Open [1999]; more)

1964 - Madonna Wayne Gacy (Stephen Bier Jr.) (musician: keyboards: group: Marilyn Manson: The Love Song, Mobscene, The Fight Song, Tainted Love, The Dope Show, Disposable Teens, Sweet Dreams [Are Made of This])

1967 - Connie Britton (actress: Friday Night Lights, Looking for Kitty, The Next Big Thing, One Eyed King, Child Star: The Shirley Temple Story, No Looking Back, The West Wing)

1972 - Shaquille O’Neal (basketball: Orlando Magic: NBA Rookie of the Year [1993]; LA Lakers)

1978 - Lara Cox (actress: Stepfather of the Bride, DeMarco Affairs, BlackJack series, Kangaroo Jack, Balmain Boys, Angst, Heartbreak High)

1979 - Tim Howard (footballer [goalkeeper]: Manchester United [2003-2007]; Everton FC [2006-2016]; Colorado Rapids [2016- ]; won the CONCACAF Gold Cup with the U.S. national team [2007]; in round of 16 at the 2014 World Cup, he set a World Cup record by saving 16 shots [in 2-1 loss to Belgium])

1985 - Yael Stone (actress: Orange Is the New Black, All Saints, Spirited, Childhood’s End)

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Chart Toppers - March 6
1945
Accentuate the Positive - Johnny Mercer
I Dream of You - The Tommy Dorsey Orchestra (vocal: Freddy Stewart)
A Little on the Lonely Side - The Frankie Carle Orchestra (vocal: Paul Allen)
I’m Losing My Mind Over You - Al Dexter

1953
Till I Waltz Again with You - Teresa Brewer
Don’t Let the Stars Get in Your Eyes - Perry Como
Keep It a Secret - Jo Stafford
Kaw-Liga - Hank Williams

1961
Pony Time - Chubby Checker
Surrender - Elvis Presley
Wheels - The String-A-Longs
Don’t Worry - Marty Robbins

1969
Everyday People - Sly & The Family Stone
Proud Mary - Creedence Clearwater Revival
Baby, Baby Don’t Cry - Smokey Robinson & The Miracles
To Make Love Sweeter for You - Jerry Lee Lewis

1977
Love Theme from "A Star is Born" (Evergreen) - Barbra Streisand
Fly like an Eagle - Steve Miller
I Like Dreamin’ - Kenny Nolan
Heart Healer - Mel Tillis

1985
Careless Whisper - Wham! featuring George Michael
Can’t Fight This Feeling - REO Speedwagon
California Girls - David Lee Roth
Baby Bye Bye - Gary Morris

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
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