Birthdays: Pope Gregory XIII, Beau Brummel, Paul Gauguin, Chick Corea, George Szell, Watergate congressman Peter Rodino, Tom Jones, Jessica Tandy, James Ivory, Virginia McKenna, Prince, Mike Pence, Liam Neeson is 67
1927- A daredevil named Alvin “Shipwreck” Kelly climbed on top of a flagpole on top of a bank in Newark, New Jersey, and sat there for eight days straight. This stunt was covered by the media almost as much as Charles Lindbergh’s flight. It made the 1930s craze for flagpole-sitting.
1932- During the Great Depression about one third of the independent banks in the U.S. failed. On this day Hollywood was affected because the First Bank of Beverly Hills went under, erasing the assets of many important Hollywood figures.
Greta Garbo lost one million dollars overnight. Louis B. Mayer, ever one to capitalize on a situation, offered her an advance if she would sign an exclusive 7 year contract with MGM. Garbo's back was to the wall, so she signed. But she got her revenge in her own way- she immediately went on a 6 month vacation to Europe and took a lesbian lover Mercedes DeAcosta, whom she proceeded to tongue-kiss in front of cameras.
1955- The TV quiz show, The $64,000 Question premiered.
1975- This day Sony announced the first home videotape playing system, the Betamax. They were about $25,000 each, but we were promised as they became more popular the price would come down.
1993- Rockstar Prince celebrated his birthday by changing his name to that funny symbol no keyboard can reproduce and no one can say. He did it because of a dispute with Warner Records who said because of his contract he could not issue recordings under his own name. In 2000 he switched back to Prince.
2002 –Kim Possiblepremiered on TV.