Birthdays: Plato, Swinburne, Booker T. Washington, Josef Lister, Bette Davis, Nadar, Jean Fragonard, animator Hicks Lokey, Nguyen Van Thieu, historian Robert Bloch, Gale Storm, Washington Atlee-Burpee the mail order seed king, Spencer Tracy, Frank Gorshin, Melvyn Douglas, Walter Huston, Nigel Hawthorne, Peter Greenaway, Gregory Peck, Roger Corman is 92, Agnetha Faltskog of ABBA is 68, Colin Powell is 81, Pharrell Williams is 45.
1930 -James Dewar invented the Twinkie. Dewar ate two every day of his life and called them “The best darn-tootin idea I ever had!” As an experiment in 1996 five top French master chefs were given the assignment of trying to recreate a Twinkie using natural ingredients. They all failed.
1931- Fox Film Company dropped their option on young star John Wayne as a dud not going anywhere. Wayne eked out an existence doing cheap westerns for Republic and Monogram until John Ford made him a star in 1939’s Stagecoach.
1945- The first Casper the Friendly Ghost cartoon.
1963- The Lava Lamp invented by Dr. Edward Craven Walker.
1965- Julie Andrews had created the role of Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady on Broadway. But when filming the motion picture, the studio head Jack Warner decided she was not a big enough star, so he used Audrey Hepburn with a dubbed singing voice. But La Andrews had her revenge. At the Academy Awards this night My Fair Lady won Best Picture among a bunch of others, but Julie Andrews won the best actress Oscar for Mary Poppins. She famously said "I would like to thank Jack Warner for making this award possible!"
1976- Eccentric Billionaire Howard Hughes died at age 76. Hughes had inherited his fathers oil rig tool company at 17, and built the mighty Hughes aircraft empire, and ran RKO pictures. But after surviving several test plane crashes, he became addicted to pain killers and became increasing withdrawn from the world. He died a strange shut in, long haired and living on a diet of drugs and saving his urine in mason jars.
1985- Singer David Lee Roth quit the rock band Van Halen to pursue a solo career.
1994- Grunge rock star Kurt Kobain shot himself. His body wasn’t discovered until two days later.