Today's History Trivia for August 4
Lizzie Borden Murders
Lizzie Borden's father and stepmother are axed to death in their home. Lizzie was tried and acquitted of the crime. No one else was ever charged.
1693 Champagne Invented Dom Pérignon is generally credited with inventing the sparkling wine on this date. However, he actually just improved the process. He was originally tasked with the job of removing the bubbles, since they had a tendency to cause the bottles to burst. This could create a hazardous and costly chain reaction when other bottles broke due to the shock caused by the initial breakage.
1993 Suicide Doctor - Death #18 Dr. Jack Kevorkian assists in the death of 30-year-old Lou Gehrig's disease victim, Thomas Hyde.
1993 Rodney King Beating L.A. police officers Stacey Koon and Laurence Powell are sentenced to 2½ years in prison for their part in the 1992 videotaped beating of Rodney King.
1977 U.S. Department of Energy is established.
1964 Mississippi Burning Three civil rights workers are found murdered in Mississippi. The film Mississippi Burning (1988) is loosely based on these murders and ensuing FBI investigation.
1936 Jesse Owens The black American track star upsets Hitler's theory of Aryan superiority by winning his second gold medal, for the long jump. He went on to win a total of four.
1916 U.S. signs treaty to purchase the Virgin Islands from Denmark for the sum of $25,000,000. It was ratified the following year.
1914 World War I The U.S. declares its neutrality, offering the following day to mediate.
1821 First issue of the Saturday Evening Post In 1898 the current owner falsely claimed it was a continuation of Ben Franklin's Pennsylvania Gazette which was published from 1728-1815.
1790 Revenue cutter service is founded, later becoming the U.S. Coast Guard (1915).
Today's Birthdays for August 4
1961 Barack Obama (Barack Hussein Obama II), 44th U.S. President (2009-17) and U.S. Senator (2005-08, Illinois). First African American U.S. President. He was the first African-American president of the Harvard Law Review (1990).
1971 Jeff Gordon American race car driver, four-time champion of the NASCAR Winston/NEXTEL Cup (1995, 1997, 1998, and 2001) Series.
1962 Roger Clemens American baseball pitcher, winner of seven Cy Young Awards (two more than any other pitcher).
1955 Billy Bob Thornton (William Robert Thornton), American Oscar-winning screenwriter, actor. Film: One False Move (1992) and Sling Blade (1996, which he wrote, directed, and starred in).
1952 Bobby Buntrock d. 1974 American actor. TV: Hazel (1961-66, Harold Baxter). He died in a car accident on the same bridge that his mother died on in a car crash a year earlier.
1913 Wesley Addy d. 1996 American actor. TV: Loving (Cabot Alden).
1904 Helen Kane d. 1966 (Helen Schroeder), American actress, singer. Broadway: Good Boy (1929, giving her famous squeaky-voiced "Boop-boop-a-doop" rendition of I Wanna Be Loved by You). Listen
1902 Clara Peller d. 1987 American TV personality. The "Where's the beef?" lady for the Wendy's commercials.
1901 Louis Armstrong d. 1971 American jazz musician, "Satchmo," the first and greatest solo jazz musician.
1861 Jesse Wilford Reno d. 1947 American inventor. He patented the first working escalator (1892). It was called the "inclined elevator."
1816 Macon Bolling Allen d. 1894 (Allen Macon Bolling), American lawyer. First African-American lawyer admitted to the bar (1844) and the first African American Justice of the Peace.
1792 Percy Bysshe Shelly d. 1822 English poet.
1755 Nicolas-Jacques Conté d. 1805 French painter, inventor of the modern pencil. He developed the process of combining powdered graphite with clay and pressing it between two wooden halves.
1521 Urban VII d. 1590 Italian religious leader, 228th Pope (Sept. 1590). He died 12 days after being elected pope.
Deaths for August 4
2014 James Brady b. 1940 U.S. President Ronald Reagan's White House press secretary (1981-86). In 1981, he was shot by John Hinckley, Jr. who was trying to assassinate Reagan to impress Jodie Foster. See Event.
1999 Victor Mature b. 1913 American actor, starring in many Biblical epics. He was billed as "A beautiful hunk of man." Film: One Million B.C. (1940, Tumak the caveman), Samson and Delilah (1949, Samson) and After the Fox. Quote: "Actually, I am a golfer. That is my real occupation. I never was an actor; ask anybody, particularly the critics." (1966).
1997 Jeanne Louise Calment b. 1875 French centenarian, world's longest confirmed human lifespan. She lived for 122 years and 164 days. Source: Guinness Book of World Records
1995 J. Howard Marshall b. 1905 (Jeremiah Howard Marshall II), American oil billionaire. At age 89, he married 26-year-old Playmate of the Year Anna Nicole Smith.
1977 Edgar Douglas Adrian b. 1889 1st Baron of Cambridge, English physiologist, shared the 1932 Nobel Prize in medicine with Sir Charles Sherrington for work in the field of nerve impulses.
1938 Pearl White b. 1889 American actress, starred in the movie serials The Perils of Pauline (1914-24). She was the most popular actress of her day.
1906 Daniel Wesson b. 1825 American gun-maker, co-founder of Smith & Wesson (1857).
1905 Walther Flemming b. 1843 German anatomist. He was the first to systematically observe and describe the behavior of chromosomes in the cell nucleus during normal cell division. He also coined the term mitosis (1882, the process of cell division).
1875 Hans Christian Andersen b. 1805 Danish poet, novelist. Writings: The Little Mermaid, The Princess and the Pea, The Ugly Duckling, The Red Shoes, and The Emperor's New Clothes.
1821 William Floyd b. 1734 American politician, signer of the Declaration of Independence.
1060 Henry I b. 1008 King of France (1031-60).