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On This Day

In 1553, Lady Jane Grey ascended (for a very short time) the throne of England.

In 1778, Louis XVI of France, himself later deposed in a revolution, declared war of Great Britain in support of the American revolution.

In 1890, Wyoming became the 44th State.

In 1913, the hottest temperature ever in the U.S. was reached in Death Valley, CA, where the high reached 134 degrees. As tourists have flocked there this week to attempt frying eggs (fail), the temps have been creeping up again in that direction, getting as high as 129 degrees.

In 1925, the so-called "Scopes Monkey Trial" began as John T. Scopes was tried for the crime of teaching science (evolution) to poor innocent schoolchildren.

In 1938, Howard Hughes broke the world record by flying around the world in 91 hours.

In 1962, the first telecommunications satellite, Telstar, was launched.

In 1964, the Beatles album "Hard Day's Night" was released.

In 1966, a rally in Chicago at Soldier Field featuring Martin Luther King was attended by 60,000 people

In 1992, former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega was sentenced to 40 years in jail for drug and racketeering charges.

In 2011, Rupert Murdoch's News of the World tabloid ceased publication in the wake of the massive phone-hacking scandal.

Born on This Day

1509 – John Calvin, French theologian and pastor (d. 1564)

1638 – David Teniers III, Flemish painter (d. 1685)

1736 – Maria, Duchess of Gloucester and Edinburgh (d. 1807)

1807 - Edward Charles Williams, English landscape painter (d. 1881)

 photo EdwardCharlesWilliams.jpg

1830 – Camille Pissarro, French painter (d. 1903)

 photo CamillePissarro.jpg

1839 – Adolphus Busch, German brewer, co-founded Anheuser-Busch (d. 1913)

1856 – Nikola Tesla, Serbian-American physicist and engineer (d. 1943)

1862 - Helena Sofia Schjerfbeck, Finnish painter (d. 1946)

 photo HelenaSofiaSchjerfbeck.jpg

1871 – Marcel Proust, French writer (d. 1922)

1887 - Mario Cavaglieri, Italian painter (d. 1969)

 photo MarioCavaglieri.jpg

1888 – Giorgio de Chirico, Italian painter (d. 1978)

 photo GiorgiodeChirico.jpg

1897 - John Gilbert, silent film star (d. 1936)

1898 – Renée Björling, Swedish actress (d. 1975)

1904 – Lili Damita, French actress (d. 1994)

 photo LiliDamita.jpg

1905 – Mildred Benson, American journalist and author (d. 2002)

1907 – Blind Boy Fuller, American singer and guitarist (d. 1941)

1914 – Joe Shuster, Canadian-American illustrator (d. 1992)

1921 – Harvey Ball, American artist, created the Smiley (d. 2001)

1921 – Jake LaMotta, American boxer

1921 – Eunice Kennedy Shriver, American activist, co-founded the Special Olympics (d. 2009)

1922 – Jean Kerr, American author (d. 2003)

1926 – Fred Gwynne, American actor (d. 1993)

1927 – David Dinkins, American politician, 106th Mayor of New York City

1928 – Bernard Buffet, French painter (d. 1999)

1931 – Nick Adams, American actor (d. 1968)

1935 – Tura Satana, American actress (d. 2011)

1938 – Lee Morgan, American trumpet player (d. 1972)

1941 – Ian Whitcomb, English singer-songwriter, producer, author, and actor

1942 – Ronnie James Dio, American singer-songwriter, musician, and producer (Rainbow, Black Sabbath, Dio) (d. 2010)

1943 – Arthur Ashe, American tennis player (d. 1993)

1945 – Ron Glass, American actor

1946 – Sue Lyon, American actress

1947 – Arlo Guthrie, American singer-songwriter and musician

1949 – Greg Kihn, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and author (The Greg Kihn Band)

1952 – Kim Mitchell, Canadian singer-songwriter and guitarist (Max Webster)

1953 – Zoogz Rift, musician, composer and wrestling personality (d. 2011)

1953 – Rik Emmett, Canadian guitarist, songwriter, and producer (Triumph and Strung-Out Troubadours)

1954 – Neil Tennant, English singer-songwriter and musician (Pet Shop Boys and Electronic)

1956 – Tom McClintock, American racist and xenophobe politician

1957 – Cindy Sheehan, American anti-war activist

1958 – Béla Fleck, American musician, songwriter, and composer (Sparrow Quartet, New Grass Revival, Strength in Numbers, and Trio!)

1972 – Sofia Vergara, Colombian actress

1974 – Chiwetel Ejiofor, English actor

1980 – Jessica Simpson, American singer and stereotypical "dumb blonde"

Died on This Day

138 – Hadrian, Roman Emperor, wall-builder (b. 76)

1559 – Henry II of France (b. 1519)

1584 – William the Silent, French prince (b. 1533)

1675 - Bertholet Flémal, Franco-Flemish painter (b. 1614)

 photo BertholetFleacutemal.jpg

1686 – John Fell, English clergyman (b. 1625)

1724 - Franz Werner von Tamm, German still life and animal painter (b. 1658)

1806 – George Stubbs, English painter (b. 1724)

 photo GeorgeStubbs.jpg

1913 - Mikoláš Aleš, Czech painter (b. 1852)

1915 - Hendrik Willem Mesdag, Dutch marine painter (b. 1831)

1927 - Louise Abbema, French painter (b. 1853)

 photo LouiseAbbema.jpg

1931 - Robert Spencer, American painter (b. 1879)

 photo RobertSpencer.jpg

1941 – Jelly Roll Morton, American pianist, bandleader, and composer (b. 1890)

1978 – John D. Rockefeller III, American businessman and philanthropist, founder of the Asia Society (b. 1906)

1979 – Arthur Fiedler, American conductor (b. 1894)

1987 – John H. Hammond, American record producer, critic, and actvist (b. 1910)

1989 – Mel Blanc, American voice actor (b. 1908)

2011 – Roland Petit, French choreographer and dancer (b. 1924)

2012 – Maria Hawkins Ellington, American singer (b. 1922)

Today is

National Pina Colada Day
Clerihew Day
Don't Step on a Bee Day
Teddy Bear Picnic Day

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