Today's History Trivia for April 19
Salem Witch Trials
Bridget Bishop is accused for witchcraft. She would be hanged eight weeks later, making her the first of 20 people executed in 1692 for witchcraft in Salem, Massachusetts. She was accused of bewitching five young women, who claimed the "shape" of Bishop would pinch, choke, and bite them.
1995 Oklahoma City bombing The Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA, is bombed, killing 168. It was the largest domestic terrorist attack in the United States up to that date.
1993 Branch Davidian's compound is burned when FBI agents begin battering holes in the walls and tossing tear gas. Seventy-eight cult members were killed, including leader David Koresh.
1989 A gun-turret explodes on the battleship USS Iowa, killing 47 sailors. The navy originally accused one of the crew members killed in the blast of intentionally igniting it after a failed homosexual relationship. A later report by the GAO determined that the accused was not homosexual and that the explosion was likely caused by improper storage of the gunpowder.
1982 First African-American astronaut NASA announces that Guion S. Bluford, Jr. would be the first African-American astronaut. He became the first African-American in space (1983).
1973 First U.S. consumer product sold in the Soviet Union Pepsi signs a contract with the USSR.
1971 First Space Station The Soviet Union launches Salyut 1, becoming the first space station in orbit.
1970 Broom-Hilda comic strip, by Russell Myers, premiers.
1967 James Bond The James Bond spoof Casino Royale premiers. The cast included Peter Sellers, Ursula Andress, David Niven, Orson Welles, Woody Allen, Jacqueline Bisset, and John Huston.
1964 Mario Andretti The racing legend makes his first Indy car appearance. He finished 11th.
1951 Korean War Gen. Douglas MacArthur in his farewell speech to Congress states: "In war there can be no substitute for victory."
1943 LSD - First Bad Acid Trip Swiss chemist Albert Hofmann, inventor of LSD, had after accidentally discovering the psychedelic effects of the drug several days earlier. He then takes his first intentional dose. Unlike his first experience, this time it triggered frightening images and colors. He felt "I was alternately bewildered and in clear understanding of the situation, so that I sometimes stood outside myself as a neutral observer as I shrieked half madly or babbled unintelligible nonsense."
1939 Bill of Rights Connecticut passes the Bill of Rights, only 148 years after it was ratified.
1897 First Boston Marathon John J. McDermott of New York City wins with a time of 2 hours, 55 minutes, and 10 seconds.
1775 The shot "heard round the world" Fired at Lexington Common, starting the American Revolution.
1529 Birth of Protestantism At the Second Diet of Speyer, Lutheran leaders "protest" for freedom of religion, From then on, the German Lutheran Reformers were known as "Protestants."
Today's Birthdays for April 19
1946 Tim Curry English Oscar-winning actor. Film: The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975, Dr. Frank N. Furter), Legend (1985) and The Hunt For Red October (1990, Oscar).
1937 Elinor Donahue American actress. TV: Father Knows Best (Betty "Princess" Anderson), The Andy Griffith Show (Andy's girlfriend Ellie) and Get a Life (Chris' mom).
1935 Dudley Moore d. 2002 English actor, composer. Film: 10 (1979) and Arthur (1981).
1933 Jayne Mansfield d. 1967 (Vera Jayne Palmer), American actress, sex-symbol. Film: Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter (1955).
1933 Dick Sargent d. 1994 (Richard Cox), American actor. TV: Bewitched (replaced Dick York as Darrin).
1923 Hugh O'Brian (Hugh Krampe), American actor. Founded Hugh O'Brian Youth Leadership (1958). TV: The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp (1955-61, Sheriff Wyatt Earp).
1912 Glenn Theodore Seaborg d. 1999 American Nobel-winning chemist. He was the co-discoverer of plutonium (1940), for which he shared a 1951 Nobel Prize, the isotope plutonium 239 (1941), americium (1944), curium (1944), berkelium (1949), and californium (1950).
1880 Albert Wallace Hull d. 1966 American physicist. Inventor of a number of vacuum tubes, including the magnetron (1921) which was important for its use in RADAR.
1877 Ole Evinrude d. 1934 Norwegian inventor. After rowing a boat to a picnic, he decided there had to be a better way and invented the outboard marine engine (1909).
1813 Samuel Gregory d. 1872 American medical educator. He founded Boston Female Medical School (1848), the first medical school exclusively for women, because he was opposed to male doctors attending births.
1795 Christian Gottfried Ehrenberg d. 1876 German biologist, founder of micropaleontology - the study of fossil microorganisms.
1127 Saint Felix of Valois d. 1212 French Monk. He helped found the Trinitarians (c1197).
359 Gratian d. 383 (Flavius Gratianus), Roman Emperor (367-383), helped establish Christianity by persecuting heretics and pagans.
Deaths for April 19
2013 Allan Arbus b. 1918 American actor. TV: M*A*S*H (Dr. Sidney Freedman).
2011 Grete Waitz b. 1953 Norwegian runner, world record holder, 9-time New York City Marathon winner (1978-80, 82-86, 88). She was the first woman run the marathon in under two and a half hours (1979, NYC Marathon 2:27:33)
2004 Norris McWhirter b. 1925 British writer, political activist, co-founder, with his twin brother Norris, of Guinness Book of Records (1954). He was the timekeeper when runner Roger Bannister broke the 4-minute mile.
1993 Thomas Hooker b. ???? American policeman. His life inspired the TV show T.J. Hooker in which he was portrayed by William Shatner. He died in a house fire set by his wife and son.
1993 David Koresh b. 1959 (Vernon Howell), American leader of the Branch Davidians during their 51-day stand off with federal agents (1993) which resulted in a mass suicide of him and his followers.
1989 Daphne de Maurier b. ???? gothic romance author, Rebecca.
1987 Hugh "Lumpy" Brannum b. 1910 American actor. TV: Captain Kangaroo (Mr. Green Jeans).
1882 Charles Robert Darwin b. 1809 English evolutionist, author of On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection (1859).
1881 Benjamin Disraeli b. 1804 British prime minister. He once declared "No government can be long secure without a formidable opposition."
1824 Lord Byron b. 1788 (George Gordon Byron), English poet. Writings: Don Juan (1818-24).
1813 Benjamin Rush b. 1746 American physician, signer of the Declaration of Independence. He co-founded the first U.S. anti-slavery society (1774), and established the first U.S. free medical dispensary (1786). He earned his B.A. from College of New Jersey (now Princeton University) at the age of fourteen.
1567 Michael Stifel b. 1487 German monk, mathematician. He was the first to use the term "exponent" and invented an early form of logarithms (years before John Napier - who is generally credited with the discovery). He also predicted that Judgment Day and the end of the world would occur on October 19, 1533. When his prediction failed, he had to be taken into protective custody with the villagers chanting death threats outside his cell. Many, believing his prediction, had not planted crops and had destroyed the possessions.
1054 Saint Leo IX b. 1002 French-born religious leader, 152nd Pope (1049-54).