Today's History Trivia for April 9
1940 First Shopping Cart The patent is granted to its inventor, the owner of a Humpty Dumpty Grocery store in Oklahoma City. It was essentially a folding chair with wheels and baskets attached. The carts were initially a flop, as shoppers were reluctant to use them - men found them effeminate and women thought them too much like a baby carriage - so he hired models to shop with them.
1881 Billy the Kid The notorious outlaw is found guilty of the murder of Sheriff William J. Brady during the Lincoln County Cattle War. He was later sentenced to hang, but escaped, only to be killed three months later by Sheriff Pat Garrett.
1986 Mad Dog of the Middle East U.S. President Ronald Reagan nicknames Libyan leader Muammar el-Qaddafi in response to his terrorist acts.
1965 First Major U.S. Enclosed Stadium The Houston Astrodome opens.
1959 NASA picks its first seven astronauts.
1872 Dried Milk Samuel R. Percy is issued a patent for dried milk.
1866 Civil Rights Act Passed by Congress, over Pres. Andrew Johnson's veto, granting citizenship to all persons born in the U.S., except Indians not taxed, and declaring equal rights for all citizens.
1865 Civil War Lee surrenders to Grant at Appomattox.
1800 Laughing Gas (nitrous oxide) is first suggested for use as an anesthetic, by English scientist Humphry Davy.
1682 La Salle enters the mouth of the Mississippi at the Gulf of Mexico, naming the region Louisiana and claiming it for France.
Today's Birthdays for April 9
1915 Leonard Wibberley d. 1983 Irish author. Writings: The Mouse That Roared (1955, movie 1959). His novel was about a tiny country that believes the only way to help their economy is to declare war on the U.S. and lose, and then receive financial aid, much like the U.S. did with Germany at the end of WWII. Quote: "There isn't a more profitable undertaking for any country than to declare war on the United States and to be defeated."
1830 Eadweard James Muybridge d. 1904 (Edward James Muggeridge), English-born pioneer in motion photography. His photographic studies of animal motion laid the foundation for modern motion pictures. (click to view animation).
1979 Keshia Knight Pulliam American actress. TV: The Cosby Show (Rudy).
1954 Dennis Quaid American actor. Film: The Right Stuff (1983), Enemy Mine (1985), and Great Balls of Fire (1989).
1939 Michael Learned American Emmy-winning actress. TV: The Waltons (Olivia Walton).
1935 Avery Schreiber d. 2002 American comedian, of the comedy team, Burns and Schreiber. He was famous for his Doritos ads in the 1970s. TV: The Burns and Schreiber Comedy Hour (1973, co-host).
1933 Jean-Paul Belmondo French superstar actor. Film: Breathless (1960).
1926 Hugh Hefner d. 2017 American publisher, playboy. Founder of Playboy magazine (1953).
1921 Frankie Thomas d. 2006 American actor. TV: Tom Corbett, Space Cadet (title role) (1950).
1919 John Presper Eckert Jr d. 1995 American computer pioneer. He was co-inventor with John W. Mauchly of first all-purpose stored-program computer (1945, ENIAC). He and Mauchly also started the first computer company (1947).
1903 Ward Bond d. 1960 American actor. TV: Wagon Train (Major Adams).
1903 Gregory Goodwin Pincus d. 1967 American endocrinologist whose work led to the development of the first effective oral contraceptive (the pill). He was the first to achieve in-vitro fertilization of rabbits (1934), which paved the way for "test-tube babies."
1901 Howard A. Rusk d. 1989 American physician, founder of physical therapy. He developed physical therapy while working with wounded WWII soldiers.
1899 James Smith McDonnell d. 1980 American aircraft manufacturer. He founded McDonnell Aircraft Co. (1939), which merged with Douglas Aircraft Co. (1967), and sold the U.S. Navy the first carrier-based jet fighter (1946, FH-1 Phantom).
1883 Frank O. King d. 1969 American cartoonist. Creator of Gasoline Alley (1919).
Deaths for April 9
1991 Maurice Binder b. 1925 American film title designer. He created the titles for 14 of the James Bond movies including the first, Dr. No (1962).
1959 Frank Lloyd Wright b. 1867 (Frank Lincoln Wright), American architect, emphasized design that harmonized with the construction materials and landscape. He also coined the word "carport."
1922 Patrick Manson b. 1844 British parasitologist, Father of Tropical Medicine. His insect research led to the discovery of how malaria is transmitted by mosquitoes.
1626 Francis Bacon b. 1561 English philosopher and statesman, one of principal founders of systematic thought. There is much debate as to whether he was the true author of Shakespeare's writings. While stuffing a chicken with snow to test the feasibility of using snow to preserve meat, he contracted a fatal case of pneumonia.
1483 Edward IV b. 1442 King of England (1461-83).
1024 Benedict VIII b. ???? religious leader, 143rd Pope (1012-24).
715 Constantine b. ???? religious leader, 88th Pope (708-715).