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March 30

Events - March 30
1842 - Dr. Crawford W. Long performed the first operation while his patient was anesthetized by ether on this day. Crawford had been observing several party-goers under the influence of nitrous oxide and sulfuric ether. Those folks were feeling no pain. And Crawford’s patient literally felt no pain as the good doctor removed a tumor from the man’s neck using the party concoction. This event has been commemorated as Doctors’ Day since this day in 1933. Doctors throughout the United States celebrate in Dr. Crawford W. Long’s honor and, in honor of ether as an anesthetic.

1858 - Hyman L. Lipman of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania patented the writing device we call the pencil. Yes, it did have an attached eraser as well. Why, then, we wondered, wasn’t it called the Lipman? “Teacher, I’m sorry, but I seem to have forgotten my Lipman this morning.” Or -- “May I please go and sharpen my Lipman?” See? It works.

1867 - Alaska was purchased from Russia for two-cents an acre! Now that’s called getting your two-cents worth...

1909 - The Queensboro Bridge, the first double-decker bridge, opened in New York City.

1923 - The Audubon Ballroom in New York City was the scene of the first dance marathon. Alma Cummings danced the fox trot, one-step and waltz with half a dozen partners. It is not known who or how many survived...

1936 - The radio serial, "Backstage Wife", made a move across the radio dial from the Mutual Broadcasting System to NBC radio. Once there, the program continued to air for the next 23 years.

1945 - "The Dreft Star Playhouse" was heard for the final time on radio. The show had been paying up to $3,000 per week to attract ‘name’ talent. Dreft, the show’s sponsor, was a popular laundry soap of the time.

1946 - "Academy Award" was heard on radio for the first time. The first dramatized story was titled, "Jezebel" and starred actress Bette Davis.

1948 - Soviet Premier Joseph Stalin ordered all road and rail access to Berlin, Germany blocked. This was just the beginning of what would become a complete blockade of the German city three months later ... on June 24.

1955 - Brando, Kelly, O’Brien, Saint, Kazan. These were the names the 27th Academy Awards were made of. And all of the other big names of Hollywood gathered at the RKO Pantages Theater in Los Angeles to honor these stars and the motion pictures of 1954 including "The Caine Mutiny", "The High and the Mighty"; "A Star is Born"; "The Glenn Miller Story"; "Rear Window"; "Sabrina"; "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea"; and "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers". Actor/comedian Bob Hope and actress Thelma Ritter (in New York City) hosted. "On the Waterfront" (Sam Spiegel, producer) won Oscars for Best Picture, Director (Elia Kazan), Actor (Marlon Brando), Supporting Actress (Eva Marie Saint) and more (art direction, cinematography, film editing, writing). Grace Kelly was voted Best Actress for "The Country Girl" (“How far should a woman go...to redeem the man she loves?”). Best Supporting Actor was Edmond O’Brien for "The Barefoot Contessa" and Best Music/Song Oscars went to Jule Styne (music), Sammy Cahn (lyrics) for "Three Coins in the Fountain" from the flick of the same name.

1963 - The Chiffons began a four-week stay at the top of the pop music charts as their hit single, "He’s So Fine", became number one. The song stayed at the top of the top tune tabulation until Little Peggy March came along with "I Will Follow Him" on April 27th.

1964 - “This ... is ... ‘Jeopardy’!” One of television’s best known game shows, "Jeopardy", developed by Merv Griffin, aired on NBC-TV for the first time on this day. Your category: Game Show Hosts: for 200 points. This host never missed one show in 2,500 programs. “Um, who is Art Fleming?” Right you are!

1970 - Lauren Bacall starred in "Applause" which opened on Broadway. The show became one of the hardest tickets to get on the Great White Way. Critics called Bacall “a sensation.” The play, at the Palace Theatre, was an adaptation of the film, "All About Eve". It continued for 896 performances. A London version of the show, also starring Bacall, opened in 1972.

1970 - Television dramas were added to the daytime lineups of both ABC and NBC. "The Best of Everything" was first seen on ABC as was "A World Apart". On NBC-TV, Somerset debuted.

1970 - Secretariat, the great race horse that went on to win the Triple Crown of horse racing in 1973, was foaled.

1971 - The Bee Gees received a gold record for the single, "Lonely Days". When playing it, they heard the song at a faster speed and said, “Hey, this sounds like disco!” and the rest was "Saturday Night Fever" music history...

1974 - John Denver reached the top spot on the music charts with his hit, "Sunshine on My Shoulders". It was the singer’s first number one song. Three other singles by Denver reached the top of the music world: "Annie’s Song", "Thank God I’m a Country Boy" and "I’m Sorry". "Take Me Home Country Roads" made it to the number two position, while "Rocky Mountain High" just cracked the Top 10 at number 9. Denver wrote "Leaving on a Jet Plane" for Peter, Paul and Mary and won an Emmy for the TV special, "An Evening With John Denver". Once again, I’m Casey Kasem in Hollywood. Keep those feet on the ground. Keep reaching for the stars...

1978 - Ellen Corby returned to Walton’s Mountain more than a year after she left in an ambulance, the victim of a stroke. The episode was called, "Grandma Comes Home".

1981 - U.S. President Ronald Reagan was shot in the chest by a would-be assassin as the President walked to his limousine in Washington DC. Press Secretary James Brady and two police officers were also wounded in the attack. John W. Hinkley, Jr. was convicted of the crime.

1983 - Basketball player Larry Bird of the Boston Celtics set a regular season Celtic scoring record as he pumped in 53 points. The record stayed intact until 1985 when Bird broke his own record with a 60-point performance on March 12.

1987 - Vincent van Gogh’s "Sunflowers" brought $39.85 million -- more than triple the record for an auctioned painting. The sale was on the 134th anniversary of the birth of the artist. Singer Don McLean wrote and sang a musical tribute to this artistic genius, titled "Vincent", in April of 1972.

1987 - The 59th Annual Academy Awards extravaganza emanated from the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion of the Los Angeles Music Center. Chevy Chase, Goldie Hawn and Paul ‘Crocodile Dundee’ Hogan hosted. (Hogan was also an Oscar nominee for Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen with Ken Shadie and John Cornell for "Crocodile Dundee".) Now let’s get right to the good part: Best Picture: "Platoon" (Arnold Kopelson, producer); Best Director: Oliver Stone for "Platoon"; Best Actor: Paul Newman for "The Color of Money"; Best Actress: Marlee Matlin for "Children of a Lesser God"; Best Supporting Actor: Michael Caine for "Hannah and Her Sisters"; Best Supporting Actress: Dianne Wiest for "Hannah and Her Sisters" and Best Music/Song: Giorgio Moroder (music), Tom Whitlock (lyrics) for "Take My Breath Away" from "Top Gun". And HBO (Home Box Office) earned its first Oscar as "Down and Out in America" tied for Best Documentary feature. The cable-TV film played in a Los Angeles movie theatre for one week to qualify for the Academy Award. Now, stay tuned for your local news...

1992 - The 64th Annual Academy Awards statuette-passing-out-party was thrown at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Los Angeles. Funny man and actor/producer/writer/director Billy Crystal was host as that creepy "The Silence of the Lambs" (Edward Saxon, Kenneth Utt, Ronald M. Bozman, producers) won the prize for Best Picture of 1991. "Silence" also won the Best Director Oscar for the creepy Jonathan Demme; Best Writing/Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium for the creepy Ted Tally; Best Actor for the creepy Anthony Hopkins and Best Actress for the anything-but-creepy Jodie Foster. Jack Palance won Best Supporting Actor for playing Curly in "City Slickers" and the Best Supporting Actress Oscar was claimed by Mercedes Ruehl for "The Fisher King". Best Music/Song: Alan Menken (music), Howard Ashman (lyrics) for "Beauty and the Beast" from, you guessed it, "Beauty and the Beast". You probably wouldn’t have guessed that the movie, "Terminator 2: Judgment Day", nominated in six categories, won four Oscars for Best Sound (Tom Johnson, Gary Rydstrom, Gary Summers, Lee Orloff); Best Effects/Sound Effects Editing (Gary Rydstrom, Gloria S. Borders); Best Effects/Visual Effects (Dennis Muren, Stan Winston, Gene Warren Jr., Robert Skotak); and Best Makeup (Stan Winston, Jeff Dawn). 1991 was definitely a creepy movie year!

Those Were the Days: Current Issues

Birthdays - March 30
1746 - Francisco Jose de Goya y Lucientes (artist: The Caprices, The Family of Charles IV, Majas, The 2nd of May, The 3rd of May; died Apr 18, 1828)

1853 - Vincent van Gogh (post-impressionist artist: The Potato Eaters, Sunflowers, The Night Cafe; died July 29, 1890)

1880 - Sean O’Casey (playwright: Harvest Festival, The Plough and the Stars, Juno and the Paycock, Shadow of a Gunman, The Plough and the Stars; died Sep 18, 1964)

1900 - Ted (Edward) Heath (musician: trombone, bandleader: played big band concerts every Sunday at the Palladium in the 1940s and 1950s; died Nov 18, 1969)

1913 - Frankie Laine (Frank Paul LoVecchio) (singer: That’s My Desire, Mule Train, That Lucky Old Sun, The Cry of the Wild Goose, Jezebel, High Noon [Do Not Forsake Me], Moonlight Gambler, Love is a Golden Ring, I Believe; died Feb 6, 2007)

1919 - McGeorge Bundy (president of the Ford Foundation; Special Assistant for National Security Affairs under U.S. Presidents Kennedy and Johnson; died Sep 16, 1996)

1926 - Peter Marshall (Pierre LaCock) (TV host: Hollywood Squares)

1929 - Richard Dysart (actor: L.A. Law, Wall Street, Back to the Future 3, The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman, The Day of the Locust, Pale Rider, The Terminal Man, Wall Street; died Apr 5, 2015)

1930 - John Astin (actor: The Addams Family, The Pruitts of Southampton, Operation Petticoat, Night Court, I’m Dickens, He’s Fenster, The Adventures of Brisco County Jr., National Lampoon’s European Vacation)

1937 - Warren Beatty (Henry Warren Beaty) (actor: Splendor in the Grass, The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone, Bonnie and Clyde, McCabe & Mrs. Miller, The Parallax View, Shampoo, Heaven Can Wait, Reds, Dick Tracy, Bulworth, Town and Country; Academy Award-winning director: Reds [1981]; Heaven Can Wait, Dick Tracy, Bulworth; Irving G. Thalberg Memorial [Academy] Award [2000])

1940 - Jerry Lucas (Basketball Hall of Famer: Ohio State Univ. [NCAA Championship: 1960]; U.S. Olympic Team [1960], Cincinnati Royals [NBA Rookie of the Year: 1963-64], San Francisco Warriors, New York Knicks [NBA championship: 1973]; participated in seven NBA All-Star Games [1964-69, 1971]; NBA career record of 10,000+ points and 10,000+ rebounds)

1941 - Graeme Edge (musician: drums: group: The Moody Blues: Nights in White Satin, LP: Kick Off Your Muddy Boots, Long Distance Voyager)

1942 - Bobby Wright (country artist: Lay a Little Happiness on Me, Here I Go Again)

1945 - Eric Clapton (Eric Patrick Clapp) (rock guitarist: group: Yardbirds: For Your Love; song writer: Layla, score for The Hit; Grammy Award- winning singer: Bad Love [1990], LPs: Tears from Heaven and Unplugged [1993], I Shot the Sheriff, Lay Down Sally, Promises, I Can’t Stand It, Wonderful Tonight)

1950 - LaRue Martin (basketball: Loyola Univ., Portland Trail Blazers)

1957 - Paul Reiser (comedian, actor: Diner, Mad About You, Aliens, Beverly Hills Cop)

1964 - Tracy Chapman (Grammy Award-winning folk, pop singer-songwriter: Fast Car [1989], Give Me One Reason [1997])

1964 - Ian Ziering (actor: Beverly Hills 90210, The Fighter)

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Chart Toppers - March 30
1945
My Dreams are Getting Better All the Time - The Les Brown Orchestra (vocal: Doris Day)
A Little on the Lonely Side - The Frankie Carle Orchestra (vocal: Paul Allen)
Accentuate the Positive - Johnny Mercer
Shame on You - Spade Cooley

1953
Till I Waltz Again with You - Teresa Brewer
Don’t Let the Stars Get in Your Eyes - Perry Como
Pretend - Nat King Cole
Kaw-Liga - Hank Williams

1961
Surrender - Elvis Presley
Dedicated to the One I Love - The Shirelles
Apache - Jorgen Ingmann
Don’t Worry - Marty Robbins

1969
Dizzy - Tommy Roe
Traces - Classics IV featuring Dennis Yost
Time of the Season - The Zombies
Who’s Gonna Mow Your Grass - Buck Owens

1977
Rich Girl - Daryl Hall & John Oates
Dancing Queen - Abba
Don’t Give Up on Us - David Soul
Southern Nights - Glen Campbell

1985
One More Night - Phil Collins
Lovergirl - Teena Marie
We are the World - USA for Africa
Seven Spanish Angels - Ray Charles with Willie Nelson

Those were the days, my friend. We thought they’d never end...


Comments/Corrections: TWtDfix@440int.com

Written and edited by Carol Williams and John Williams
Produced by John Williams


Those Were the Days, the Today in History feature
from 440 International

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