It’s the Day the Music Died
ON THIS DAY…
1112 Ramon Berenguer III of Barcelona and Douce I of Provence marry, uniting the fortunes of those two states.
1534 The Irish rebel Silken Thomas is executed by the order of Henry VIII in London, England.
1690 The colony of Massachusetts issues the first paper money in America.
1706 During the Battle of Fraustadt Swedish forces defeat a superior Saxon-Polish-Russian force by deploying a double envelopment.
1783 American Revolutionary War: Spain recognizes United States independence.
1787 Shays’ Rebellion is crushed.
1809 The Illinois Territory is created.
1830 The sovereignty of Greece is confirmed in a London Protocol.
1867 Emperor Meiji becomes the 122nd emperor of Japan.
1870 The Fifteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution is ratified, guaranteeing voting rights to citizens regardless of race.
1900 Gubernatorial candidate William Goebel is assassinated in Frankfort, Kentucky.
1913 The Sixteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution is ratified, authorizing the Federal government to impose and collect an income tax.
1917 World War I: The United States breaks off diplomatic relations with Germany a day after the latter announced a new policy of unrestricted submarine warfare.
1918 The Twin Peaks Tunnel in San Francisco, California begins service as the longest streetcar tunnel in the world at 11,920 feet (3,633 meters) long.
1930 The Communist Party of Vietnam is established.
1931 The Hawke’s Bay earthquake, New Zealand’s worst natural disaster, kills 258.
1944 World War II: During the Gilbert and Marshall Islands campaign, U.S. Army and Marine forces seize Kwajalein Atoll from the defending Japanese garrison.
1945 World War II: As part of Operation Thunderclap, 1,000 B-17s of the Eighth Air Force bomb Berlin, a raid which kills between 2,500 to 3,000 and dehouses another 120,000.
1959 A plane crash near Clear Lake, Iowa kills Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, The Big Bopper, and pilot Roger Peterson and the incident becomes known as The Day the Music Died.
1960 British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan speaks of the “a wind of change” of increasing national consciousness blowing through colonial Africa, signaling that his Government was likely to support decolonization.
1966 The unmanned Soviet Luna 9 spacecraft makes the first controlled rocket-assisted landing on the Moon.
1967 Ronald Ryan, the last person to be executed in Australia, is hanged in Pentridge Prison, Melbourne.
1969 In Cairo, Yasser Arafat is appointed Palestine Liberation Organization leader at the Palestinian National Congress.
1971 New York Police Officer Frank Serpico is shot during a drug bust in Brooklyn and survives to later testify against police corruption. Many believe the incident proves that NYPD officers tried to kill him.
1984 John Buster and the research team at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center announce history’s first embryo transfer, from one woman to another resulting in a live birth.
1984 Space Shuttle program: STS-41-B is launched using Space Shuttle Challenger.
1988 Iran-Contra Affair: The United States House of Representatives rejects President Ronald Reagan’s request for $36.25 million to aid Nicaraguan Contras.
1989 After a stroke, P.W. Botha resigns party leadership and the presidency of South Africa.
1989 A military coup overthrows Alfredo Stroessner, dictator of Paraguay since 1954.
1995 Astronaut Eileen Collins becomes the first woman to pilot the Space Shuttle as mission STS-63 gets underway from Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
1998 Karla Faye Tucker is executed in Texas becoming the first woman executed in the United States since 1984.
1998 Cavalese cable-car disaster: a United States Military pilot causes the death of 20 people when his low-flying plane cuts the cable of a cable-car near Trento, Italy.
2007 A Baghdad market bombing kills at least 135 people and injures a further 339.
1809 Felix Mendelssohn, German composer
1811 Horace Greeley, American journalist, editor, and publisher
1824 Ranald MacDonald, Canadian-born Scottish educator and interpreter
1874 Gertrude Stein, American writer
1876 William Tedmarsh, English-born American silent movie actor
1894 Norman Rockwell, American illustrator
1904 Pretty Boy Floyd, American gangster
1907 James Michener, American author
1912 Mary Carlisle, American actress and singer
1918 Joey Bishop, American entertainer
1926 Shelley Berman, American comedian
1927 Val Doonican, Irish singer and entertainer
1932 Peggy Ann Garner, American actress
1938 Victor Buono, American actor
1940 Fran Tarkenton, American football player
1943 Blythe Danner, American actress
1945 Bob Griese, American football player
1947 Paul Auster, American novelist
1947 Dave Davies, English musician (The Kinks)
1950 Morgan Fairchild, American actress
1956 Nathan Lane, American actor
1961 Keith Gordon, American actor
1965 Maura Tierney, American actress
1970 Warwick Davis, English actor
1976 Isla Fisher, Australian actress
1468 Johannes Gutenberg, German publisher
1889 Belle Starr, American outlaw
1922 John Butler Yeats, Northern Irish artist
1924 Woodrow Wilson, 28th President of the United States, Nobel laureate
1959 The Day the Music Died
* Buddy Holly, American singer
* Roger Peterson, pilot
* Ritchie Valens, American singer
* J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson, American singer
1985 Frank Oppenheimer, American physicist
1989 John Cassavetes, American actor
1991 Nancy Kulp, American actress
2003 Lana Clarkson, American actress and model