Birthdays: Henri Matisse, General George C. Marshall, Odetta (real name Holmes Felicious Gordon), Simon Weisenthal, Virginia Davis, Pola Negri, Jules Styne, Sarah Miles, Donna Summer, Patti Smith, Elizabeth Arden, Tim Matheson, John Denver, Dianne Von Furstenberg, Ben Kingsley-born Khrishna Banji is 74, Anthony Hopkins is 80, Val Kilmer is 58, Gong Li is 52, Psy is 39
1879- Thomas Edison did a public demonstration of his new invention the Light Bulb. Special commuter trains brought people to Menlo Park New Jersey for the show.
1881- Los Angeles becomes the first U.S. city to be lit entirely by electricity.
1923-24-BBC overseas radio service first broadcast the Chimes of Big Ben around the world.
1940-41- Avant Garde artists John Sloan and Marcel Duchamp break into the Washington Square Arch in and declare Greenwich Village the Republic of New Bohemia. Like coool, daddy.
1941- A Warner Bros memo dated this day from producer Hal Wallis office announced that the movie to be made from a play by Murray Bennett called “Everybody Goes to Rick’s” has been renamed “Casablanca”. This was to capitalize on an already popular film title “Algiers” with Charles Boyer “come with me to ze Casbah” etc..
1943- Four hundred policemen are called out to control frenzied crowds of bobbysoxers as Frank Sinatra played the Paramount Theater in Times Square. OOHH FRANKIE !!
1946- The first Pismo Beach Clam Festival.
1947- Roy Rogers married Dale Evans.
1955- Chuck Jone's 'One Froggy Evening' premiered. Director Steven Spielberg called it the "Citizen Kane of Cartoons." If you wonder why you never heard the old time ditty 'The Michigan Rag' anywhere else but here, was because Chuck Jones & Mike Maltese wrote it specifically for the cartoon.
1958-59- As Fidel Castro's guerrillas closed in on Havana, Cuban dictator Fulgensio Batista slipped out of a New Year's Party and boarded a plane for Miami, all arranged by the CIA. Fredo, ya broke my heart…
1962- Romanoffs closed. One of the premier hot spots on the Sunset Strip, it was the preferred hangout of Humphrey Bogart, who liked to play chess in the afternoon with Nick Romanoff when he was between films.
1985- Singer Ricky Nelson died when his band's converted old DC-9 airplane crashed near DeKalb, Texas. Nelson it was said had been living on a steady diet of cheeseburgers and Snicker's bars.
1995- The last Calvin and Hobbes comic strip by Bill Waterston.