440 International Those Were the Days
March 25

Events - March 25
1902 - Irving W. Colburn patented the sheet glass drawing machine.

1911 - A turning point in labor laws -- especially concerning health and safety -- occurred as a result of a tragic fire in a New York City garment factory. Fire broke out at about 4:30p.m. at the Triangle Shirtwaist Company trapping young, immigrant workers behind locked doors. Many jumped to their deaths or were burned beyond recognition. The fire left 146 dead; but they did not die in vain as new laws were passed to protect children and others from slave-type labor conditions. The owners of the Triangle Shirtwaist Company were indicted for manslaughter.

1913 - The Palace Theatre opened its doors in New York City. Ed Wynn was first on the vaudeville bill. Some 20 years later, Wynn would be named as radio’s top entertainer. He later became popular on television, as well.

1931 - Hal Kemp and his orchestra recorded "Whistles", with Skinnay Ennis, for Brunswick Records. Both Kemp and Ennis sang in the Dorsey Brothers Concert Orchestra, under the direction of Dr. Eugene Ormandy (later, conductor of the Philadelphia Symphony Orchestra). The pair were part of the orchestra vocal quartet that also featured Nye Mayhew and Saxey Dowell in 1928.

1934 - Horton Smith won the first Masters golf tournament under the magnolia trees of Augusta National in Georgia.

1943 - Jimmy Durante and Garry Moore premiered on network radio. The pair replaced the popular "Abbott and Costello" following Lou Costello’s heart attack. Durante and Moore stayed on the air for four years. Moore would later make the move to television with "The Garry Moore Show" and "To Tell the Truth" both on CBS. Durante would also become a TV star on ABC with "The Jimmy Durante Show" in addition to nightclub appearances, movies and records.

1954 - Radio Corporation of America (RCA) began commercial production of TV sets that were equipped to receive programs in living color. To buy one of those huge sets, television buyers spent $1,000 -- and more.

1961 - Elvis Presley performed in one of his few post-Army appearances, a benefit for planning and building the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii. The concert raised well over $64,000 and raised public awareness of the need for the memorial.

1954 - Our wayback machine takes us to the RKO Pantages Theater in Los Angeles, as we remember the 26th Annual Academy Awards. Actor/singer/dancer Donald O’Connor and actor Fredric March (in New York) kept the audience informed on who won what. "From Here to Eternity" (Buddy Adler, producer) was the big flick of the year, picking up the Oscar for Best Director for Fred Zinnemann, Best Supporting Actor for Frank Sinatra and Best Supporting Actress for Donna Reed, in addition to Best Writing/Screenplay (Daniel Taradash); Best Cinematography/Black-and-White (Burnett Guffey); Best Sound/ Recording (John P. Livadary, Columbia SSD); and Best Film Editing (William A. Lyon). The Best Actor award for the films of 1953 went to William Holden for "Stalag 17" while the Best Actress award went to Audrey Hepburn for "Roman Holiday". "Secret Love" from "Calamity Jane" was the Best Music/Song of the Year (Sammy Fain, music, Paul Francis Webster, lyrics). An interesting note: The Best Writing/ Story and Screenplay went to the 1953 version of "Titanic" (Charles Brackett, Walter Reisch, Richard L. Breen). Other memorable movies that year (some Oscar winners, some not): "The Robe", "Shane", "Mogambo", "The Moon is Blue" and "Hondo".

1971 - Tom Jones went gold with his single, "She’s a Lady". When Tom gingerly placed the gold disk on his stereo and played it, he was shocked to hear himself singing “Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa...” for more than four minutes and when he tried to stop it, he couldn’t. Amazing!

1972 - The group, America, rode to the top of the pop music charts with their LP, "America", and the single (included on the LP), "A Horse with No Name". "A Horse With No Name" would be the group’s only gold record and one of two number one songs (the other was "Sister Golden Hair", 6/14/75). America placed 11 tunes on the pop music charts between 1972 and 1983. George Martin, the producer of The Beatles, was behind five America tunes, including "Tin Man", "Lonely People", "Sister Golden Hair", "Daisy Jane" and "Today’s the Day". Dan Peek, Gerry Beckley and Dewey Bunnell were the original lineup of the trio that won the Best New Artist Grammy in 1972.

1972 - Bobby Hull joined Gordie Howe to become only the second National Hockey League player to score 600 career goals. Hull played for the Chicago Blackhawks and Howe spent his NHL career with the Detroit Red Wings.

1985 - Oscar time again? Yes, and for the 57th time ... and at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Los Angeles, no less. Host for the big show was actor/director Jack Lemmon (no stranger to Oscar, himself). The Best Picture of 1985 was "Amadeus", produced by Saul Zaentz. The flick, about Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, also won Oscars for Best Director for Milos Forman and Best Actor for F. Murray Abraham. The film also won top honors for Best Writing/Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium (Peter Shaffer); Best Costume Design (Theodor Pistek); Best Sound (Mark Berger, Thomas Scott II, Todd Boekelheide, Christopher Newman); and Best Makeup (Paul LeBlanc, Dick Smith). Sally Field was pronounced Best Actress for "Places in the Heart", Best Supporting Actor was Haing S. Ngor for "The Killing Fields", and the Best Supporting Actress Oscar was given to Peggy Ashcroft for "A Passage to India". Stevie Wonder’s "I Just Called to Say I Love You" from "The Woman in Red" took the honors for Best Movie/Song. And the Academy gave an honorary Oscar to Jimmy Stewart in recognition of more than 70 films in his 50-year career. Stewart earned one Oscar for Best Actor in "Philadelphia Story" (1940), and nominations for Best Actor in "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington", "Harvey", "It’s a Wonderful Life" and "Anatomy of a Murder".

1991 - Hollywood’s best got all dolled up and headed over to the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion to watch Billy Crystal host the 63rd Academy Awards show. Billy sported an Armani tuxedo as did actors Jeff Goldblum, Tom Hanks, Dennis Hopper, Steve Martin and Denzel Washington. Also clad in Armani ... gowns ... were Oscar nominees Michelle Pfeiffer, Julia Roberts and Jessica Tandy, prompting "Women’s Wear Daily" to refer to the occasion as the “Armani Awards”. Best Picture of the year (1990) was "Dances with Wolves" (Jim Wilson, Kevin Costner, producers). Costner also won for his Best Direction of "Dances with Wolves". The Best Actor Oscar went to Jeremy Irons for "Reversal of Fortune". Best Actress was Kathy Bates for "Misery". The prize for Best Supporting Actor was claimed by Joe Pesci for "GoodFellas" and Best Supporting Actress was Whoopi Goldberg for "Ghost". The Best Music/Song was presented to Stephen Sondheim for "Sooner or Later (I Always Get My Man)" from "Dick Tracy".

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Birthdays - March 25
1867 - John Gutzon Borglum (sculptor: Mt. Rushmore National Memorial [George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt]; died March 6, 1941)

1867 - Arturo Toscanini (68 years in musical career: conductor: Milan, Carnegie Hall, Philadelphia Orchestra, NBC Symphony Orchestra; cellist at age 19; died Jan 16, 1957)

1881 - Bela Bartok (composer: Mikrokosmos, Concerto for Orchestra, Music for Strings, Percussion and Celeste, Solo Sonata for Violin, Concerto No. 2 for Violin and Orchestra; died Sep 26, 1945)

1901 - Ed Begley (actor: The Unsinkable Molly Brown, Sweet Bird of Youth, Sorry Wrong Number, On Dangerous Ground, The Oscar; died Apr 28, 1970)

1903 - Frankie Carle (Carlone) (pianist, bandleader [w/Horace Heidt], led own band: Saturday Night is the Loneliest Night of the Year, wrote: Oh What It Seemed to Be, Falling Leaves, Lover’s Lullaby; died Mar 7, 2001)

1908 - David Lean (Academy Award-winning director: Lawrence of Arabia [1962], The Bridge on the River Kwai [1957]; Dr. Zhivago, A Passage to India, Oliver Twist, Great Expectations; died Apr 16, 1991)

1909 - Dutch (Emil John) Leonard (baseball: pitacher: Brooklyn Dodgers Washington Nationals [all-star: 1940, 1943-1945], Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago Cubs [all-star: 1951]; died Apr 17, 1983)

1918 - Howard Cosell (Cohen) (attorney, TV sports journalist/commentator: ABC’s Wide World of Sports, boxing, Monday Night football; author: Tell It like It Is; Died Apr 23, 1995)

1919 - Jeanne Cagney (actress: A Lion is in the Streets, Quicksand; sister of actor James Cagney; died Dec 7, 1984)

1921 - Nancy Kelly (actress: The Great Gatsby [1926], To the Shores of Tripoli, The Bad Seed; died Jan 2, 1995)

1921 - Simone Signoret (Kaminker) (Academy Award-winning actress: Room at the Top [1959], Ship of Fools, Is Paris Burning?; died Sep 30, 1985)

1922 - Eileen Ford (founded famous modeling agency [1946]: Ford models; died Jul 9, 2014)

1925 - (Mary) Flannery O’Connor (writer: A Good Man is Hard to Find; died Aug 3, 1964)

1928 - James A. Lovell Jr. (astronaut: first to complete 4 spaceflights, first to make 2 flights to the Moon: aboard Gemini 7 [1965: spent 14 days in space] for rendezvous in orbit with Gemini 6; commander of Gemini 12 [Nov 1966: last Gemini mission]; command module pilot of Apollo 8 [Dec 1968: man’s first flight around the moon]; commander of Apollo 13 [Apr 1970: planned lunar landing that was aborted after an explosion on Apollo service module)

1932 - Woody (Woodson George) Held (baseball: NY Yankees, KC Athletics, Cleveland Indians, Washington Senators, Baltimore Orioles, California Angels, Chicago White Sox; died Jun 10, 2009)

1932 - Wes Santee (runner: miler: “America’s greatest mile prospect of all time,” who never quite ran the mile in under 4 minutes; banned by AAU for expense violations just before 1956 Olympics; died Nov 14, 2010)

1934 - Johnny Burnette (‘The Master’: singer: Dreamin’, You’re Sixteen; brother of singer Dorsey Burnette; killed in boating accident Aug 14, 1964)

1934 - Gloria Steinem (feminist; publisher: Ms.)

1938 - Hoyt Axton (singer, musician, songwriter: Greenback Dollar, The Pusher, Joy to the World, Never Been to Spain [Axton’s mother, Mae Boren Axton, wrote Elvis Presley’s Heartbreak Hotel]; actor: The Rousters, Gremlins, Disorganized Crime, The Civil War, Kingfish: A Story of Huey P. Long, King Cobra; died Oct 26, 1999)

1940 - Anita Bryant (singer: Paper Roses, Till There Was You; Miss Oklahoma and runner-up to Miss America [1958]; Florida orange juice spokesperson)

1941 - Barclay Plager (hockey: NHL: SL Blues)

1942 - Aretha Franklin (‘Lady Soul’: Grammy [15] Award-winning singer; Respect, Baby I Love You, Natural Woman, Chain of Fools, Think, Day Dreaming; first woman inducted into Rock and Roll Hall of Fame [1987]; actress: The Blues Brothers)

1943 - Paul Michael Glaser (actor: Starsky & Hutch, Single Bars Single Women; director: Butterflies are Free, The Air up There, The Cutting Edge, The Running Man, The Amazons, Band of the Hand)

1947 - Elton John (Reginald Kenneth Dwight) (musician, singer songwriter: Your Song, Honky Cat, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, Bennie & The Jets, Daniel, Philadelphia Freedom; actor: Tommy; established the Elton John Aids Foundation [1992])

1948 - Bonnie Bedelia (Culkin) (actress: Die Hard, Die Hard 2, Die Hard with a Vengeance, Presumed Innocent, They Shoot Horses Don’t They)

1948 - Kelly Garrett (actress, singer: Your Hit Parade, Headliners with David Frost: That Was the Week that Was; died Aug 7, 2013)

1949 - Neil Jones (musician: group: Amen Corner: Gin House Blues, Bend Me Shape Me, [If Paradise Is] Half as Nice)

1949 - Jean Potvin (hockey: NHL: LA Kings, Philadelphia Flyers, NY Islanders, Cleveland Barons, Oklahoma City Stars, Minnesota North Stars)

1951 - Maizie Williams (singer: group: Boney M: Daddy Cool, Brown Girl in the Ring, Rivers of Babylon)

1953 - Mary Gross (actress: The Santa Clause, Troop Beverly Hills, Feds, Club Paradise, Billy, A Mighty Wind; comedienne: Saturday Night Live; sister of actor, Michael Gross)

1961 - John Stockwell (Samuels) (actor: Born to Ride, Top Gun, City Limits, Christine, Losin’ It, My Science Project; director: Undercover)

1965 - Sarah Jessica Parker (actress: Sex and the City, Miami Rhapsody, L.A. Story, Honeymoon in Vegas, The Little Match Girl, The Innocents, Annie, Square Pegs, A Year in the Life, Equal Justice; opera singer: Hansel and Gretel, Cavalleria Rusticana, Pagliacci, Parade; dancer: Cincinnati Ballet Theatre, American Ballet Theatre)

1966 - Jeff Healey (musician: guitar, singer, songwriter: group: Jeff Healey Band; CBC radio show: My Kind of Jazz; died Mar 2, 2008)

1967 - Debi Thomas (figure skater: Olympic bronze medalist [Calgary, Alberta, 1988])

Those Were the Days: Current Issues

Chart Toppers - March 25
Now is the Hour - Bing Crosby
I’m Looking Over a Four Leaf Clover - The Art Moonie Orchestra
Beg Your Pardon - Francis Craig
I’ll Hold You in My Heart (Till I Can Hold You in My Arms) - Eddy Arnold

Lisbon Antigua - Nelson Riddle
The Poor People of Paris - Les Baxter
A Tear Fell - Teresa Brewer
Heartbreak Hotel - Elvis Presley

She Loves You - The Beatles
Fun Fun Fun - The Beach Boys
Twist and Shout - The Beatles
Saginaw, Michigan - Lefty Frizzell

A Horse with No Name - America
Puppy Love - Donny Osmond
Mother and Child Reunion - Paul Simon
My Hang-Up is You - Freddie Hart

Another Brick in the Wall - Pink Floyd
Working My Way Back to You/Forgive Me, Girl - Spinners
Him - Rupert Holmes
Why Don’t You Spend the Night - Ronnie Milsap

Never Gonna Give You Up - Rick Astley
I Get Weak - Belinda Carlisle
Man in the Mirror - Michael Jackson
Life Turned Her that Way - Ricky Van Shelton

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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