Fun Facts for Today – December 27

December 27

It’s National Fruitcake Day and Make Cut Out Snowflakes Day

ON THIS DAY…

1831 Charles Darwin embarks on his journey aboard the HMS Beagle
1845 Ether anesthetic is used for childbirth for the first time by Dr. Crawford Williamson Long
1871 The world’s first cat show is held at the Crystal Palace in London
1900 Carry Nation smashes up her first bar
1904 James Barrie’s play Peter Pan premieres in London
1927 Leon Trostky is expelled from the Communist Party
1932 The Radio City Music Hall in New York City opens
1937 Mae West is banned from NBC radio after performing an Adam and Eve skit
1939 The Glenn Miller Show debuts on the CBS radio network
1945 The World Bank is created
1947 The Howdy Doody Show makes its debut on NBC
1947 Bell Labs invented the transistor
1963 The Animals appear on the BBC radio show Saturday Club , their first radio appearance
1968 Apollo 8 splashes down in the Pacific Ocean, ending humanity’s first manned mission to the Moon
1977 Star Wars finally opens in Britain
1978 Spain becomes a democracy after 40 years of dictatorship
1979 The Soviet Union seizes control of Afghanistan
1983 Pope John Paul II pardons Pope John Paul II pardons Mehmet Ali Agca, the man who shot him
1991 The final episode of The Carol Burnett Show airs on CBS

BORN:

1571 Johannes Kepler, astronomer who formulated three major laws of planetary motion
1773 Sir George Cayley, aeronautical pioneer who built the first successful man-carrying glider
1822 Louis Pasteur, chemist/microbiologist
1867 Sir William Cecil Dampier, scientist/agriculturist/science historian
1879 Robert Greig, actor (Animal Crackers , Sullivan’s Travels )
1879 Sydney Greenstreet, actor (Casablanca , The Maltese Falcon )
1888 Thea von Harbou, writer/actress (Metropolis , M )
1901 Marlene Dietrich, actress (Destry Rides Again , Witness for the Prosecution )
1906 Oscar Levant, pianist/composer/actor (An American in Paris , The Band Wagon )
1910 Ian Donald, physician who first successfully applied ultrasound reflection imaging for medical diagnosis
1915 William Masters, gynecologist/senior member of the Masters and Johnson sexuality research team
1918 John Celardo, comic strip artist (Tarzan , Tales of the Green Beret )
1939 John Amos, actor (Good Times , Roots )
1948 GĂ©rard Depardieu, actor (Cyrano de Bergerac , The Man in the Iron Mask )
1955 E.E. Bell, actor (Married with Children , Herbie Fully Loaded )
1960 Maryam d’Abo, actress (The Living Daylights , Doctor Zhivago )
1974 Masi Oka, actor (Heroes , Get Smart )
1975 Heather O’Rourke, actress (Poltergeist , Happy Days )
1981 Emilie de Ravin, actress (Roswell , Lost )

DIED:

1923 Gustave Eiffel, engineer/architect, dies at 91
1981 Hoagy Carmichael, composer/singer/pianist/actor, dies at 82
1982 John Leonard “Jack” Swigert, Jr., astronaut (Apollo 13) dies at 51
1988 Hal Ashby, film director (Harold and Maude , Being There ) dies at 59
2002 George Roy Hill, Academy Award-winning film director (The Sting , Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid ) dies at 80
2003 Sir Alan Bates, actor (Women in Love , Georgy Girl ) dies at 69
2007 Benazir Bhutto, former Pakistan Prime Minister/Pakistani opposition leader, assassinated at 54

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