Today's History Trivia for August 27
413 B.C. Lunar Eclipse Decides War During the Peloponnesian War, an eclipse of the Moon frightened the Athenians into delaying the movement of their forces from Syracuse for twenty-seven days. This delay gave an advantage to their enemies, the Syracusans, who then defeated the entire Athenian fleet and army.
1955 First copy of the Guinness Book of Records is bound. Source: Guinness Book of World Records
1942 USS Iowa The battleship is launched. In 1943 it became the only U.S. Navy ship with a bathtub; which was installed to accommodate Pres. Roosevelt who would have had difficultly using a shower.
1889 First celluloid roll film is produced, by the Eastman Dry Plate Co. of New York.
1883 Krakatoa Explosion The Indonesian volcanic island explodes with a force equivalent to 26 H-bombs, discharging 5 cubic miles of volcanic matter. The ensuing eruptions and tsunamis killed over 36,000 people. The explosions could be heard from 3,000 miles away.
1859 First successful oil well is drilled, near Titusville, Pennsylvania.
1832 Indian chief Black Hawk surrenders ending the Black Hawk War.
1783 First hydrogen-balloon flight (unmanned) by Jacques C. Charles.
1665 First Play in America The Bare and Ye Cubb is performed by three local residents of Virginia. They were fined for performing in public.
Today's Birthdays for August 27
1908 Lyndon Baines Johnson d. 1973 36th U.S. President (1963-69) and 37th U.S. Vice-President (1961-63). He was the first president to use the Hot Line. Quote: "Making a speech on economics is a lot like pissing down your leg. It seems hot to you, but it never does to anyone else."
1906 Ed Gein d. 1984 American murderer. The character Leatherface in the 1974 film The Texas Chainsaw Massacre was based partly on his crimes. He confessed to killing two women and robbing graves from which he made trophies and keepsakes from the body parts. Other famous movie killers were also loosely based on his crimes, such as as Norman Bates (Psycho) and Buffalo Bill (The Silence of the Lambs).
1877 Charles Stewart Rolls d. 1910 English auto maker, aviator, co-founded the Rolls-Royce automobile company (1904). He was the first person to fly across the English Channel (1910). He was killed a month later at an air show making him the first British airplane fatality.
1947 Barbara Bach actress, wife of Ringo Starr. Film: The Spy Who Loved Me (1977, KGB agent Major Anya Amasova).
1943 Tuesday Weld (Susan Weld), American actress. TV: The Many Lives of Dobie Gillis (Thalia Menninger, Dobie's unattainable desire).
1942 Daryl Dragon American musician, the Captain of Captain and Tennille. Music: Love Will Keep Us Together (1975, #1) and Muskrat Love (1976).
1937 Tommy Sands American singer, actor, teen idol. He was married to Nancy Sinatra (1960-65). Music: Teen-Age Crush. Film: Babes in Toyland (1960).
1916 Martha Raye d. 1994 (Margaret Reed), American actress, denture wearer. Film: Monsieur Verdoux (1947).
1899 C.S. Forester d. 1966 (Cecil Scott Forester), novelist, created Horatio Hornblower.
1865 Charles Gates Dawes d. 1951 30th U.S. Vice-President (1925-29).
1809 Hannibal Hamlin d. 1891 15th U.S. Vice-President (1861-65).
Deaths for August 27
1971 Bennett Alfred Cerf b. 1898 American publisher. He was the founder, president, and chairman of Random House publishers. Known for his wit, gags, and puns. Cerf won "U.S. v. One Book Called Ulysses" (1933), a landmark court case against government censorship, and then published James Joyce's unabridged Ulysses for the first time in the U.S. He was a panelist on the TV show What's My Line? for 16 years. Writings Bennett Cerf's Treasury of Atrocious Puns (1968).
1997 Brandon Tartikoff b. 1949 American broadcast executive, head of programming at NBC.
1996 Greg Morris b. 1933 American actor. TV: Mission: Impossible (1966-73, electronics expert Barney Collier).
1990 Stevie Ray Vaughan b. 1954 American Hall of Fame guitarist, musician. He died in a helicopter crash, along with several members of Eric Clapton's road crew.
1967 Brian Epstein b. 1934 British impresario, discoverer and first manager of The Beatles.
1964 Gracie Allen b. 1895 (Grace Ethel Cecile Rosalie Allen), America comedian. Wife and partner of George Burns. "Say good night, Gracie"
William Edward Burghardt DuBois
American educator, co-founder of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP, 1909). He was the first black to earn a Ph.D. from Harvard (1895).
1958 Priscilla Lawson b. 1914 (Priscilla Shortridge), American actress. Film: Flash Gordon movie serials (1936, Princess Aura the daughter of Ming the Merciless). She was Miss Miami Beach (1935).
1958 Ernest Orlando Lawrence b. 1901 American Nobel-winning physicist. He developed the atom smasher which produced the fuel for the first atomic bombs.
1898 Mary Downing Barnes b. 1850 American educator, the first woman faculty member of Stanford University (1891).
1590 Sixtus V b. 1521 (Felice Peretti di Montalto), religious leader, 227th Pope (1585-90).