Today's History Trivia for August 22
1979 ABSCAM U.S. Representative Michael Myers is videotaped accepting a $50,000 bribe. The FBI had set up a fraudulent Arabian company and videotaped public officials accepting bribes in return for various political favors. Six members of the U.S. House of Representatives, one U.S. Senator, a member of the New Jersey State Senate, members of the Philadelphia City Council, the Mayor of Camden, New Jersey, and an inspector for the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service would eventually be convicted. ABSCAM was short "Arab scam."|
1911 Mona Lisa stolen Leonard da Vinci's famous painting is stolen from the Louvre in Paris. It was recovered unharmed two years later.
1902 Cadillac The Cadillac Automobile Company is formed by Henry Ford. It would later be acquired by General Motors.
1865 Liquid soap William Sheppard of New York is granted the first patent for making liquid soap. It was to mix one pound soap with 100 pounds of ammonia until it had the consistency of molasses.
1851 First America's Cup Yacht race The America defeats 14 British entries. The U.S. would remain undefeated in this event until 1983.
1826 First white man to cross the Mohave Desert American explorer Jedediah Smith and his crew set out from the Great Salt Lake, Utah. They arrived in San Diego the following November.
1787 First manned American steamboat John Fitch rides his craft down the Delaware River at a speed of 3 mph.
1762 First American woman newspaper editor Ann Franklin - Ben Franklin's sister-in-law - takes over the Newport Rhode Island Mercury after the death of her son, who had started the paper four years earlier.
1670 First American Indian Christian preacher Hiacoomes is ordained by John Eliot and John Cotton. He held services in Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts.
1654 First Jew to settle in North America Jacob Barsimson arrives at New Netherlands.
Today's Birthdays for August 22
1947 Cindy Williams American actress. Film: American Graffiti (1973). TV: Laverne & Shirley (Shirley Feeney).
1945 Ron Dante (Carmine Granito), American singer, lead singer for The Archies. Music: Sugar Sugar (1969, #1) and Jingle Jangle (1970).
1939 Valerie Harper American Emmy-winning actress. TV: The Mary Tyler Moore Show (1970-77, Rhoda Morganstern) and Rhoda (1974-78).
1932 Gerald Paul Carr American astronaut, commander of the third manned Skylab mission (1973).
1925 Honor Blackman English actress. Film: Jason and the Argonauts (1963, Hera) and Goldfinger (1964, Pussy Galore). TV: The Avengers (1962-64, Cathy Gale).
1912 John Lee Hooker d. 2001 American blues singer. One of the most successful blues musicians of the 1960s.
1908 Henri Cartier-Bresson d. 2004 French photographer, father of modern photojournalism. He is considered one of the greatest photographers of all time.
1893 Dorothy Parker d. 1967 American author, humorist. She is the author of the couplet "Men seldom make passes - at girls who wear glasses."
1891 Jacques Lipchitz d. 1973 Lithuanian-born American sculptor. Considered one of greatest sculptures of the 20th century, known for his bronze statues of humans and animals.
1880 George Herriman d. 1944 American cartoonist, creator of Krazy Kat (1910).
1862 Claude Debussy d. 1918 French musician, composer, known for his impressionist "tone poems."
1848 Melville Elijah Stone d. 1929 American newspaper publisher. He is credited with introducing the odd-pricing strategy. He encouraged his advertisers to subtract a penny from the price - for example, making a $3 item $2.99.
1836 Archibald M. Willard d. 1918 American artist. He is best known for his painting The Spirit of '76, which is exhibited in Abbott Hall in Massachusetts.
1834 Samuel Pierpont Langley d. 1906 American aviation pioneer, built the first successful heavier-than-air flying machine (1896) and for whom Langley Air Force Base in Virginia is named.
1778 James Kirke Paulding d. 1860 American author, poet. He wrote Koningsmarke, the Long Finne (1823) in which the tongue-twister "Peter Piper pick'd a peck of pickled peppers" first appeared.
1760 Leo XII d. 1829 Italian religious leader, 252nd Pope (1823-29).
Deaths for August 22
2011 Nickolas Ashford b. 1942 American Songwriters Hall of Fame songwriter with his wife Valerie Simpson. Music: Ain't Nothing Like the Real Thing (1968) and Ain't No Mountain High Enough (1970).
1989 Huey Percy Newton b. 1942 American political leader, co-founder of the Black Panthers (1966). His 1967 conviction for killing a police officer was overturned after a nationwide "Free Huey" campaign.
1980 James Smith McDonnell b. 1899 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).
1978 Jomo Kenyatta b. circa 1894 Kenyan statesman, first president of Kenya (1964-78). He played an African chief in the British film Sanders of the River (1934).
1977 Sebastian Cabot b. 1918 English actor. TV: Family Affair (Mr. French).
1967 Gregory Goodwin Pincus b. 1903 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."
1940 Sir Oliver Joseph Lodge b. 1851 English physicist, spiritualist, pioneer in wireless telegraphy. He was the first to send Morse code using radio waves. A believer in psychic phenomenon, he wrote a book about his after-life communications with his son who was killed in WWI.
1485 Richard III b. 1452 King of England (1483-85). He was killed in battle with Henry Tudor after being deserted by his key nobleman.
1280 Nicholas III b. circa 1216 Italian religious leader, 188th Pope (1277-80).
1241 Gregory IX b. circa 1145 Italian religious leader, 178th Pope (1227-41). Started the Inquisition in 1229 as a means of preventing and punishing heresy against the Roman Catholic Church.