Birthdays: Richard Pryor, Mary Martin, Cyril Ritchard, Dick Shawn, Richard Crenna, Lee Trevino, Charlene Tilton, Lou Rawls, Marshal Gyorgi Zhukov, Admiral Stansfield Turner, Rex Stout the author of Nero Wolfe, Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar, Treat Williams, Woody Allen is 84, Bette Midler is 74, Sarah Silverman is 49
1835- Hans Christian Andersen published his first book of fairy tales.
1861- The first installment of Charles Dicken’s novel Great Expectations began to appear in magazines.
1879- Gilbert & Sullivan’s comic opera HMS Pinafore opened. Sullivan conducted the orchestra while Gilbert was a chorister.
1887- The very first Sherlock Holmes mystery by Arthur Conan-Doyle "A Study in Scarlet" first published in Beeton’s Christmas Gazette.
1938- In Moscow legendary filmmaker Sergei Eisenstein released his film of Russian patriotism ALEXANDER NEVSKY, with soundtrack provided by Sergei Prokoviev.
1944- Bela Bartok’s Concerto for Orchestra premiered by the Boston Symphony and Serge Kousevitsky.
1951- MIT scientists booted up Project Whirlwind, the TX-0 Computer. Called the Tixo, it was as large as a bus and was the first computer that could do more than one program at a time. In 1952 it had the first computer screen and first light pen. The TX-2 was used to write the first animation program Sketchpad, and the first interactive game SpaceWar!, both in 1962.
1953- Ex- Esquire magazine art director and frustrated cartoonist Hugh Hefner published the first issue of Playboy Magazine. It featured a nude centerfold of actress Marilyn Monroe.