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1996–The film That Thing You Do! is released by 20th Century Fox. The movie marked the directorial debut of Tom Hanks, and starred Hanks, Tom Everett Scott, Liv Tyler, Jonathon Schaech, Steve Zahn, Ethan Embry, Rita Wilson, Chris Isaak, Kevin Pollak, Peter Scolari, Charlize Theron, Giovanni Ribisi, Chris Ellis, and Bill Cobbs. The story revolves around an American rock & roll band trying to hit it big in the wake of the British Invasion in early 1964.



23–Rebels capture and sack the Chinese capital Chang'an during a peasant rebellion. They kill and decapitate Emperor Wang Mang, two days later.

610–Heraclius arrives by ship from Africa at Constantinople, overthrows Byzantine Emperor Phocas, and becomes Emperor.

1052–Vladimir of Novgorod dies in Novgorod, Russia, at age 32.

1160–Alys, Countess of the Vexin, is born in France.

1227–Caliph al-Adil of Morocco is assassinated.

1274–Rudolf I, Duke of Bavaria, is born in Basel, Prince-Bishopric of Basel, Holy Roman Empire.

1289–Louis X, King of France (1314-1316), is born in Paris, France. Louis allowed serfs to buy their freedom (which was the first step towards the abolition of serfdom), abolished slavery, and readmitted French Jews into the kingdom. He was the first person to construct indoor tennis courts in the modern style. In due course, his design spread across royal palaces all over Europe.

1302–A peace treaty between the Byzantine Empire and the Republic of Venice ends the Byzantine-Venetian War (1296-1302).

1305–Emperor Kameyama of Japan dies at age 56.

1363–At the end of the Battle of Lake Poyang, the Chinese rebel forces of Zhu Yuanzhang defeat that of his rival, Chen Youliang, in one of the largest naval battles in history.

1379–Henry III of Castile is born in Burgos, the capital of Castile. He was sometimes known as “Henry the Sufferer” or “Henry the Sick.”

1511–The Holy League of Ferdinand II of Aragon, the Papal States, and the Republic of Venice, is formed against France.

1535–The first complete English-language Bible (the Coverdale Bible) is printed, with translations by William Tyndale and Myles Coverdale.

1550–Charles IX of Sweden is born at Stockholm Castle in Stockholm, Sweden. His reign marked the start of the final chapter of both the Reformation and Counter-reformation.

1582–Pope Gregory XIII implements the Gregorian calendar. In Italy, Poland, Portugal, and Spain, October 4th of this year is followed directly by October 15th.

1585–Anna of Tyrol is born in Innsbruck, Austria. She was Holy Roman Empress, German Queen, Queen of Bohemia, and Queen of Hungary.

1597–The first Guale uprising begins against the Spanish missions in Georgia.

1597–Emperor Sarsa Dengel of Ethiopia, dies after eating foul fish from a river, at age 47.

1626–Academic and politician, Richard Cromwell, is born in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, England. He was Lord Protector of England, Scotland, and Ireland, and one of only two commoners to become the English head of state: the other was his father, Oliver Cromwell, from whom he inherited the position.

1636–The Swedish Army defeats the armies of Saxony and the Holy Roman Empire at the Battle of Wittstock.

1669–Dutch painter and etcher, Rembrandt, dies in Amsterdam, Dutch Republic (present-day Netherlands), at age 63. He was buried in an unknown grave in the Westerkerk. It was in a numbered 'kerkgraf' (grave owned by the church), somewhere under a tombstone in the church. After 20 years, his remains were taken away and destroyed: that was customary with the remains of poor people at that time. Rembrandt is generally considered one of the greatest painters and printmakers in European art and the most important in Dutch history. His greatest creative triumphs are exemplified in portraits of his contemporaries, self-portraits, and illustrations of scenes from the Bible.

1754–Tribal chief, Tanacharison, dies of pneumonia on the farm of John Harris in Paxtang, Pennsylvania, at age 54. He played a pivotal role in the beginning of the French and Indian War.

1787–Historian and politician, François Guizot, is born François Pierre Guillaume Guizot in Nîmes, France. He was the 22nd Prime Minister of France.

1795–Napoleon Bonaparte first rises to national prominence with a "Whiff of Grapeshot," using a cannon to suppress armed counter-revolutionary rioters threatening the French Legislature (National Convention).

1810–Eliza McCardle Johnson, wife of President Andrew Johnson, is born in Telford, Tennessee. She was the 18th First Lady of the United States. She was not able to serve as First Lady due to her poor health. She remained confined to a room on the second floor, leaving the social chores to her daughter (Martha Johnson Patterson). Mrs. Johnson appeared publicly as First Lady on only two occasions: at a reception for Queen Emma of the Kingdom of Hawaii in 1866. and at the President's birthday party in 1867.

1821–Engineer, John Rennie the Elder, dies after a short illness in London, England, at age 60. He designed the Waterloo Bridge.

1822–Rutherford B. Hayes, 19th President of the United States, is born Rutherford Birchard Hayes in Delaware, Ohio.

1824–Mexico becomes a federal republic.

1830–The Kingdom of Belgium is established after separation from the Netherlands.

1841–Politician, Prudente de Morais, is born Prudente José de Morais Barros in Itu, São Paulo, Empire of Brazil. He was the third President of Brazil. He is known as the first civilian president of the country, the first to be elected by direct popular ballot under the permanent provisions of Brazil's 1891 Constitution, and the first to serve his term in its entirety.

1841–Maria Sophie of Bavaria is born at Possenhofen Castle, Possenhofen, Kingdom of Bavaria. She was the last Queen consort of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies.

1853–The Ottoman Empire declares war on Russia.

1861–Painter, sculptor, and illustrator, Frederic (Sackrider) Remington, is born in Canton, New York. He specialized in depictions of the Old American West, specifically concentrating on the last quarter of the 19th century American West and images of cowboys, American Indians, and the U.S. Cavalry.

1868–Politician, Marcelo Torcuato de Alvear, is born Máximo Marcelo Torcuato de Alvear Pacheco in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He was the 20th President of Argentina.

1875–Entertainer, George Formby, is born James Lawler Booth in northwestern England. He was an English comedian and singer in musical theatre, known as one of the greatest music hall performers of the early 20th century. His son was entertainer, George Formby, Jr.

1876–Texas A&M University opens as the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas, becoming the first public institution of higher education in Texas.

1880–The University of California is founded in Los Angeles, California.

1880–Author and playwright, (Alfred) Damon Runyon, is born in Manhattan, Kansas. He is best known for his short stories celebrating the world of Broadway in New York City that grew out of the Prohibition era. He spun humorous and sentimental tales of gamblers, hustlers, actors, and gangsters, few of whom go by "square" names, preferring instead colorful monikers such as "Nathan Detroit," "Benny Southstreet," "Big Jule," "Harry the Horse," "Good Time Charley," "Dave the Dude," or "The Seldom Seen Kid." His distinctive vernacular style is known as "Runyonese": a mixture of formal speech and colorful slang, almost always in present tense, and always devoid of contractions. Runyon's fictional world is also known to the general public through the musical Guys and Dolls, based on two of his stories, "The Idyll of Miss Sarah Brown" and "Blood Pressure."

1883–The Orient Express makes its first run.

1883–The first meeting is held of the Boys' Brigade in Glasgow, Scotland.

1895–The first U.S. Open Men's Golf Championship, administered by the United States Golf Association, is played at the Newport Country Club in Newport, Rhode Island.

1895–Actor, Buster Keaton, is born Joseph Frank Keaton in Piqua, Kansas. He was a vaudevillian, comedian, filmmaker, stunt performer, and writer. He was best known for his silent films, and his trademark was physical comedy with a consistently stoic, deadpan expression, earning him the nickname "The Great Stone Face." Keaton designed and modified his own pork pie hats during his career.

1904–The New York City subway system opens and 350,000 people ride its 9.1 mile tracks.

1904–Sculptor, Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi, dies of tuberculosis in Paris, France, at age 70. He is best known for “Liberty Enlightening the World,” better known as the Statue of Liberty.

1913–Politician, Martial (Lavaud) Célestin, is born in Ganthier, Haiti. He was the first Prime Minister of Haiti. He was deposed by the Haitian coup d'état in June 1988.

1916–Comedian, Jan Murray, is born Murray Janofsky in the Bronx, New York. He originally made his name on the Borscht Belt and later was known for his frequent television appearances over several decades on shows such as Texaco Star Theater, The Ed Sullivan Show, The Tonight Show, and The Joey Bishop Show.

1916–Film director, George Sidney, is born in Long Island City, New York. His films include Anchors Aweigh, Ziegfeld Follies, The Harvey Girls, Annie Get Your Gun, Show Boat, Scaramouche, Kiss Me Kate, Jupiter’s Darling, The Eddy Duchin Story, Jeanne Eagels, Pal Joey, Byb Bye Birdie, A Ticklish Affair, Viva Las Vegas, The Swinger, and Half a Sixpence.

1918–An explosion destroys the T.A. Gillespie Company Shell Loading Plant in Sayreville, New Jersey, killing over 100 people. Fires and explosions continue for three days, forcing massive evacuations.

1923–Actor, Charlton Heston, is born John Charles Carter in Wilmette, Illinois. As a Hollywood star he appeared in 100 films over the course of 60 years. He is best known for the role of Moses in the epic film The Ten Commandments. He appeared in the films The Greatest Show on Earth, Ruby Gentry, The Far Horizons, Touch of Evil, The Big Country, Ben-Hur, El Cid, The Greatest Story Ever Told, The Agony and the Ecstasy, Major Dundee, Will Penny, Planet of the Apes, The Omega Man, Soylent Green, Earthquake, and Midway.

1927–Gutzon Borglum begins sculpting Mount Rushmore.

1928–Journalist and author, Alvin Toffler, is born in New York, New York. He is a futurist, known for his works discussing the digital revolution, communication revolution, and technological singularity. He is best known for this book, Future Shock, published in 1970.

1929–Country singer, Leroy Van Dyke, is born in Mora, Missouri. His biggest hits were The Auctioneer and Walk On By.

1935–Actor, Eddie Applegate, is born Edward Robert Applegate in Wyncote, Pennsylvania. He is best known for the role of Richard Harrison, the boyfriend of Patty Lane, on The Patty Duke Show.

1936–In the East End of London, England, marches staged by British fascists and various anti-fascist organizations result in violent clashes in what is known as the Battle of Cable Street.

1937–Writer, Jackie Collins, is born Jacqueline Jill Collins in Hampstead, London, England. She wrote 32 novels, all of which appeared on The New York Times bestsellers list. She is best known for the “Hollywood” series, which includes Hollywood Wives, Hollywood Husbands, Hollywood Kids, and Hollywood Divorces. Her other books include The World Is Full of Married Men, The Stud, and Rock Star. Her sister is actress, Joan Collins.

1940–A meeting between Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini takes place at the Brenner Pass.

1941–Norman Rockwell's Willie Gillis character debuts on the cover of The Saturday Evening Post.

1941–Journalist and author, Roy (Alton) Blount, Jr., is born in Indianapolis, Indiana. He was a staff writer and associate editor with Sports Illustrated magazine from 1968 to 1975, and has continued to contribute to the magazine. His books include About three Bricks Shy of a Load, What Men Don’t Tell Women, and Roy Blount's Book of Southern Humor.

1941–Writer, Anne Rice, is born Howard Allen Frances O'Brien in New Orleans, Louisiana. Her work includes gothic fiction, Christian literature, and erotica. She is perhaps best known for her popular series of novels, The Vampire Chronicles, revolving around the central character of Lestat. Books from The Vampire Chronicles were the subject of two film adaptations: Interview with the Vampire in 1994, and Queen of the Damned in 2002.

1943–The United States captures the Solomon Islands from the Japanese.

1945–Actor, Clifton (Duncan) Davis, is born in Chicago, Illinois. He starred on the TV shows That's My Mama and Amen. He also appeared on Police Story, Vega$, and Grace Under Fire.

1946–Actress, Susan Sarandon, is born Susan Abigail Tomalin in Jackson Heights, Queens, New York. She appeared in the films Joe, Lovin’ Molly, The Rocky Horrow Picture Show, One Summer Love, Pretty Baby, Atlantic City, The Buddy System, The Witches of Eastwick, Bull Durham, Sweet Hearts Dance, White Palace, Thelma & Louise, Lorenzo’s Oil, Dead Man Walking, Stepmom, and Cloud Atlas. She was married to actors, Chris Sarandon and Tim Robbins.

1947–Jim Fielder, bass player for Blood, Sweat & Tears, is born in Denton, Texas.

1948–Duke Robillard, of The Fabulous Thunderbirds, is born in Woonsocket, Rhode Island.

1949–Actor, Armand Assante, is born Armand Anthony Assante, Jr. in New York, New York. He appeared in the films How to Survive a Marriage, The Lords of flatbush, Paradise Alley, Little Darlings, Private Benjamin, Unfaithfully Yours, Belizaire the Cajun, The Mambo Kings, and Hoffa.

1957–The Soviet Union becomes the first nation in space, launching the Sputnik-I satellite into orbit 500 miles above the Earth.

1957–The TV sitcom, Leave It To Beaver, debuts on CBS-TV. (“Gee, Wally, do we have to be on TV and junk?”)

1957–Russell (Wendell) Simmons, is born in Queens, New York. He co-founded the hip-hop music label Def Jam. He is known for his work on HBO's Def Comedy Jam.

1958–The Fifth Republic of France is established.

1958–The Fifth Republic of France is established, adopting their current constitution.

1958–The first transoceanic jetliner service was inaugurated between New York and London, England, by British Overseas Airways Corporation.

1959–Chris Lowe, of Pet Shop Boys, is born Christopher Sean Lowe in Blackpool, Lancashire, England.

1960–The Beatles perform at the Kaiserkeller Club, Grosse Freiheit, Hamburg, West Germany. This the first of 58 nights that they will play at the club. The Beatles play alternating sets with Rory Storm & the Hurricanes. It is here that John Lennon, Paul McCartney, and George Harrison become friendly with Hurricanes drummer, Ringo Starr, and they think far less of Pete Best’s drumming abilities after seeing Ringo in action. Often, the Beatles perform drunk, mostly due to the generosity of appreciative customers who send beer up to them on the stage.

1960–Eastern Air Lines Flight 375, a Lockheed L-188 Electra, crashes after a bird strike on takeoff from Logan International Airport in Boston, Massachusetts, killing 62 of the 72 people on board.

1961–Bob Dylan plays Carnegie Hall in New York City. He draws an audience of 50 people and makes $20 for the performance.

1962–Singer, Jon Secada, is born Juan Francisco Secada Martínez in Havana, Cuba.

1963–Hurricane Flora kills 6,000 people in Cuba and Haiti.

1965–Pope Paul VI arrives in New York, as the first Pope to visit the United States of America and the Western hemisphere.

1965–A chart topper: Yesterday by The Beatles. The song has been played on radio and TV more than any other Beatles song and is the most covered song in music history.

1966–Basutoland becomes independent from the United Kingdom and is renamed Lesotho.

1967–Omar Ali Saifuddien III of Brunei abdicates in favour of his son, His Majesty Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah.

1968–A chart topper: Fire by The Crazy World of Arthur Brown.

1970–Rock singer, Janis Joplin, dies of a drug overdose, at the Landmark Motor Hotel in Hollywood, California, at age 27. She first rose to fame in the late 1960s, as the lead singer of the psychedelic/acid rock band Big Brother and the Holding Company, and later as a solo artist with her own backing groups, The Kozmic Blues Band and The Full Tilt Boogie Band. Her hits include Down on Me, Summertime, Piece of My Heart, Ball 'n' Chain, Maybe, To Love Somebody, Kozmic Blues, Cry Baby, Mercedes Benz, and Me and Bobby McGee.

1974–The New Democracy party is founded in Greece.

1976–The official launch of the InterCity 125 high speed train takes place in Great Britain. It is the brand name of British Rail's High Speed Train (HST) fleet. The train operates at speeds of up to 125 mph in regular service, and has an absolute maximum speed of 148 mph, making it the fastest diesel-powered train in the world.

1976–Actress, Alicia Silverstone, is born in San Francisco, California. She appeared in the films The Crush, Clueless, The Babysitter, Batman & Robin, Blast from the Past, Beauty Shop, and Vamps.

1977–John Lennon and Yoko Ono hold a press conference in Japan at the end of a four-month vacation. John announces that his top priority for the next several years will be the raising of his son, Sean, and that all artistic concerns will be secondary.

1982–The group Squeeze disbands.

1982–Psychic and actor, The Amazing Criswell, dies of cardiac arrest in Burbank, California, at age 75. He was known for his wildly inaccurate predictions. Criswell sometimes appeared in the movies of eccentric writer and director, Ed Wood. He appeared in the films Plan 9 from Outer Space, Orgy of the Dead, Night of the Ghouls, and It Came from Hollywood.

1982–Pianist and conductor, Glenn Gould, dies from a brain damaging stroke in Toronto, Canada, at age 50. He was one of the most celebrated classical pianists of the 20th century. Gould was particularly renowned as an interpreter of the keyboard music of Johann Sebastian Bach.

1983–Richard Noble sets a new land speed record of 633.468 miles per hour, driving Thrust2 at the Black Rock Desert in Nevada.

1985–The Free Software Foundation is founded in Massachusetts.

1988–Televangelist, Jim Bakker, is indicted for fraud.

1989–Race horse, Secretariat, dies at age 19. He was buried at Claiborne Farm in Paris, Kentucky, given the rare honor of being buried whole (usually only the head, heart, and hooves of a winning race horse are buried, and the rest of the body is cremated). In 1973, Secretarait became the first U.S. Triple Crown winner in 25 years. He set race records in all three events in the series: the Kentucky Derby (1:592), the Preakness Stakes (1:53), and the Belmont Stakes (2:24) as records that still stand today. He is considered one of the greatest Thoroughbreds of all time.

1991–The Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty is opened for signature.

1992–The Rome General Peace Accords ends a 16-year civil war in Mozambique.

1992–An El Al Boeing 747-258F crashes into two apartment buildings in Amsterdam, Netherlands, killing 43 people, including 39 people on the ground.

1993–In Moscow, Russia, tanks bombard a government building that houses the Russian parliament, while demonstrators against President Boris Yeltsin rally outside.

1996–The film, That Thing You Do!, is released by 20th Century Fox. The movie marked the directorial debut of Tom Hanks, and starred Hanks, Tom Everett Scott, Liv Tyler, Jonathon Schaech, Steve Zahn, Ethan Embry, Rita Wilson, Chris Isaak, Kevin Pollak, Peter Scolari, Charlize Theron, Giovanni Ribisi, Chris Ellis, and Bill Cobbs. The story revolves around an American rock & roll band trying to hit it big in the wake of the British Invasion in early 1964.

1997–The second largest cash robbery in U.S. history occurs at the office of Loomis, Fargo and Company in Charlotte, North Carolina: $17.3 million was stolen.

1997–Game designer, Gunpei Yokoi, dies after being hit by two cars on the Hokuriku Expressway in Komatsu, Ishikawa, Japan, at age 56. He created Game Boy.

1999–Paul McCartney’s album, Run Devil Run, is released. It is a trip back in time, with Paul playing a group of rock ‘n’ roll golden oldies.

1999–Jazz musician, Art Farmer, dies in New York, New York, at age 71. He was a trumpeter and flugelhorn player. He also played flumpet, a trumpet-flugelhorn combination specially designed for him. He became known principally as a bebop player.

2001–NATO confirms invocation of Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty.

2001–A Sibir Airlines Tupolev Tu-154 crashes into the Black Sea after being struck by an errant Ukrainian S-200 missile, killing 78 people.

2003–In the Maxim restaurant suicide bombing in Haifa, Israel, 21 Israelis, Jews, and Arabs, are killed, and 51 others are wounded.

2004–SpaceShipOne wins Ansari X Prize for private spaceflight, as the first private craft to fly into space.

2004–Astronaut, Gordon Cooper, dies of Parkinson's disease in Ventura, California, at age 77. He was an American aerospace engineer, test pilot, U.S. Air Force pilot, and one of the seven original astronauts in Project Mercury, the first manned space program of the United States.

2005–Prince Emmanuel of Belgium is born Emmanuel Léopold Guillaume François Marie in Anderlecht, Belgium. He is the second son and third child of King Philippe of Belgium and Queen consort Mathilde of Belgium.

2005–Mike Gibbons, of Badfinger, dies in his sleep of a brain aneurysm at his home in Florida, at age 56. The group had hits with Come and Get It, No Matter What, Day After Day, and Baby Blue.

2006–Wikileaks is launched by Julian Assange.

2010–The Ajka plant accident in western Hungary releases about 35 million cubic feet of liquid alumina sludge. Nine people are killed, and 122 others are injured. The Marcal and Danube rivers are severely contaminated by the accident.

2014–Jean-Claude Duvalier (Baby Doc), deposed Haitian “President-for-life,” dies in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, at age 63. He was the President of Haiti from 1971 until his overthrow by a popular uprising in 1986. He succeeded his father, François "Papa Doc" Duvalier, as the ruler of Haiti, after the latter's death in 1971. Thousands of Haitians were killed or tortured, and hundreds of thousands fled the country during his presidency.

2014–Paul Revere, of Paul Revere & the Raiders, dies of cancer at his home in Garden Valley, Idaho, at age 76. The group had hits with Just Like Me, Hungry, and Kicks (an anti-drug message written by Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil that was originally written for The Animals). Revere kept the band going (with numerous personnel changes) for over four decades.

2015–Shridhar Chillal, of India, receives the Guinness Book of World Records award for the longest fingernails in the world: they measure 30 feet long. Chillal started growing the nails on his left hand when he was 16, and he is now 80 years old. He didn’t cut the nails for 62 years, but he plans to cut them sometime in the near future.

2016–Following the Brexit vote (on June 23rd), the exchange rate for the British pound reaches a 31-year low against the U.S. dollar.

2016–While campaigning for his wife and presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, former president, Bill Clinton, calls Obamacare “the craziest thing in the world,” due to its escalating health care costs and decreasing health plan choices amongst middle-income Americans.

2016–The top five in Forbes magazine’s richest Americans list are Bill Gates (Microsoft), Jeff Bezos (Amazon), Warren Buffett, Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook), and Larry Ellis (Oracle).

2016–Diane James resigns as the leader of the U.K. Independence Party after just 18 days in charge.

2016–Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte tells President Barack Obama to "go to hell," after the United States refuses to sell some weapons to his country (he also acknowledges the cooperation of Russia and China).

2016–Turkish security forces raid the headquarters of IMC TV in Istanbul, cutting its transmissions while it was live on air, for allegedly broadcasting "terror propaganda."


PHOTOS TOP TO BOTTOM: Vladimir of Novgorod; Henry III of Castile; a self-portrait of Rembrandt; a map of Mexico; a painting by Frederic Remington; the Orient Express; Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi; Charlton Heston; Jackie Collins; Clifton Davis; the cast of Leave It to Beaver; a poster from the Kaiserkeller Club; Pope Paul VI with President Lyndon B. Johnson; Janis Joplin; The Amazing Criswell; Secretariat; a poster for That Thing You Do!; Art Farmer; and Paul Revere & the Raiders.

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