Birthdays: Sophocles 495 BC, Joanna La Loca (the Mad1479), John Phillip Sousa, Joseph Smith the founder of Mormonism, Ignacz Paderewski, Charles Dow of Dow Jones, Adolphus Sax inventor of the Saxophone, James Naismith the inventor of Basketball, Mike Nichols, Edsel Ford, animator Eddie Rehberg, Sally Field is 74, Ray Coniff, John Olsen of the comedy duo Olsen & Johnson, Harold Ross the founder of the New Yorker magazine, Jonathan Harris, Maria Shriver is 63, Rebecca Romjin is 47, Emma Stone is 31
1893 Famed Russian composer Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky died at age 53. Just a few days before he premiered his 6th Symphony. The cause of death for the composer was declared to be cholera from drinking unboiled water in a local St Petersburg restaurant. Recent scholarship floated a different theory. Tschaikovsky was a closeted gay man afraid of being exposed. He had tried marriage to a woman, and hated it so much he tried suicide two weeks later. By this time he had formed an infatuation over his nephew. This allegedly caused a secret "Court of Honor" of alumni of his old civil service academy to confront him and threatened him with exposure and scandal. They threatened to even go directly to the Czar to expose him. So he may have taken poison and it was blamed on cholera which was prevalent in the city then. Fellow composer Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov though the inquest more oddly rushed and confused than usual. We may never really know.
1936-The Screen Children's Guild chartered.