1367
Henry IV, future King of England, was born.

1451
Johann Gutenberg’s movable type technique was first used on this date. It could make the production of manuscripts affordable for everyone.

1776
General George Washington became Doctor Washington on this day when Harvard University bestowed on him the honorary degree of “Doctor of Laws, the Law of Nature and Nations and the Civil Law.”

1778
Pierre-Fidele Bretonneau, an epidemiologist, was born in Tours, France. In 1825, he was the first to successfully perform a tracheotomy. Pierre was the first person who distinguished typhus from typhoid and was also the first to clinically describe and name diphtheria.

1783
Historian, diplomat, and storyteller, Washington Irving born in New York, New York.

1798
One of America’s first oceanographers, Charles Wilkes was born on this day in New York City. He led the first major U.S. oceanographic expedition from 1838-1842, which circled the globe and determined that Antartica (which was named by Wilkes) is a continent.

1860
The Pony Express made its first run, from St. Joseph, Missouri to Sacramento, California. The distance took the riders eight days.

1861
Czar Alexander II liberated the serfs in Russia while in what is now the United States of America Confederate states prepared to fight against the Union to retain slavery.

1865
Union forces occupied Richmond, Virginia, the capital of the Confederacy. Six days later this brought about the surrender of the entire Confederate Army by General Robert E. Lee to General Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Court House, Virginia, ending the Civil War.

1868
A native Hawaiian by the name of Holua made surfing history by successfully riding a tidal wave.

1879
James Carrington patented the coffee mill on this day.

1882
Robert Ford shot the famed outlaw Jesse James dead in St. Joseph, Missouri. Ford was a member of James’ own gang who decided he wanted to collect the reward money.

1893
Thomas F. Bayard becomes the first American with the title of ambassador to a foreign country when he was named Ambassador to Great Britain on this day.

1894
The musician and piano player “Dooley” Wilson was born.

1898
Time-Life publisher Henry R. Luce was born.

1899
On this day the U.S. Army successfully tested an ingenious method for transmitting messages between fortifications in Puerto Rico that were out of sight of each other. They ran signal flags up ropes holding huge kits. As many as 20 words could be sent at once. For longer messages, two kites were sent aloft with a cable strung between them. Experiments were also conducted in photographing enemy installations using the same method.

1900
The Automobile Club of America, in one of its earliest meetings, proposed building a system of transcontinental highways. The purpose of this was to accommodate the increasing amount of motor cars in the country. The earliest phase was roads from St. Augustine, Florida to Portland, Maine, as well as from New York, New York, to San Francisco, California.

Queen Victoria departed London for her train trip to Ireland. Prior to her departure the tracks and equipment were thoroughly inspected. The main engine that pulled the private train was called the "Prince of Wales". This was one of the two engines that pulled the train. The trip was a slow one, since Queen Victoria did not like to travel at a fast
pace. The trip took over 11 hours to reach Holyhead, which at normal speeds would have only taken 6 hours. Queen Victoria, at 80 years old, held the longest reign in British history. It began in 1837 and ended with her death in January of 1901.

On this day the Vanderbilt family acquired control of the Reading, Lehigh Valley, and the Erie railroad systems, under the guidance of William K. Vanderbilt, then unifying the production and transport of anthracite coal.

1902
A painting called The Holy Family by the Flemish painter named Peter Paul Rubens sold at an auction for $50,000

1903
During a nine-week, 14,000 mile tour of the West, President Theodore Roosevelt made a speech during a stopover in Milwaukee. He commended the recent passage of anti-trust acts by the U.S. Congress.

1905
Russia’s Czar Nicholas II narrowly averted a suicide-assassination plot against him. A man disguised as a Cossack colonel entered the Imperial Palace. Two bombs were discovered hidden under his coat just before the Czar came to review the officers on duty for this week.

1907
A bill was introduced in the statehouse in New Jersey that taxed facial hair. Five dollars for ordinary whiskers, eight dollars for side whiskers, ten dollars for a Van Dyke beard, fifteen dollars for mutton chops, and a whopping fifty dollars for billygoat style.

William Howard Taft, who was Secretary of War at the time, was on an inspection of the Panama Canal which was under construction at this time. Taft, who could put a severe strain on any scale, surprised his hosts when he ordered himself lowered in a bucket to the very bottom of the huge hole dug for the center of Gatun Lock. The canal would open to commercial traffic 7 years later on August 15, 1914.

1909
An attempt by impresario Oscar Hammerstein to stage Richard Strauss’s 1905 opera SALOME is banned by Boston because of its seductive dances.

The fourth Baron Gwydryr, Peter Robert died on this day. He was 99 years old. He was the oldest person to serve in Britain’s House of Lords. He was present at the coronation of Queen Victoria and three other monarchs.

1910
In the Bahamas the largest sponge on record was taking off of Nassau. It was a perfectly round natural sponge of the finest quality. It measured six feet in circumference and two feet in diameter. It weighed 90 pounds when it was caught, which reduced to 12 pounds when it dried out.

1915
Two nights before the heavyweight championship fight was to take place, the harbors around Havana became crowded with steamer ships filled to capacity with fans who were struggling to make their way through the storms and rough waters for a chance to watch the heavyweight fight. The heavyweight championship fight was between Jess Willard, a 29 year old challenger from Kansas and Jack Johnson, a 38 year old African-American (the first African-American to hold the title of heavyweight champion). This fight was scheduled for 45 rounds. In the 26th round, Jess Willard knocked out Jack Johnson. This was to be Johnson's last fight as he retired after this battle.

1923
The creator of Sherlock Holmes, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle arrived in the United States on a mission to spread his belief in psychic phenomena and spiritualism. Before this he visited mediums in England, France and Germany. These mediums convinced him that psychic events do happen and form a scientific basis for religion.

1924
Singer and actress Doris Day was born.

Actor Marlon Brando was born.

1928
The first edition of “The Raven,” which was Edgar Allan Poe’s own copy and had his autograph on the cover was auctioned on this day by the family of a friend of Poe whom he had given the copy to in the early 1840s. It sold for $7,500.

The first mobile lending library was started in Munich, Germany.

1930
Montreal won the Stanley Cup on this day, taking four games straight from the Boston Bruins.

1936
A little more than four years after the monsterous crime in which Charles A. Lindbergh’s (the aviator hero) infant son was kidnapped and killed, Robert S. Elliot, the official executioner, pulled the switch on Bruno Richard Hauptmann at the state penitentiary in Trenton, New Jersey.

1940
An act of Congress established Isle Royale, on Lake Superior as a National Park. An island wilderness without roads and accessible only by boat and seaplane, the park formed a “natural laboratory” which was later used in David Mech’s important studies of wolves and their interactions with moose. These studies showed wolves to be “prudent predators” and excellent parents, thus helping to improve their public image.

1942
Singer Wayne Newton was born.

1947
The movie Stallion Road, staring the future President of the United States, Ronald Reagan, opened in theaters throughout the country.

1948
Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House” staring Cary Grant and Myrna Loy was the top box office hit.

1950
On this day the German-American composer Kurt Weill, who was married to Lotte Lenya, died in New York. He was best known for collaborating on satirical operas with Bertolt Brecht.

1958
David Sarnoff, a communications pioneer, chairman of the board of one of the United States biggest corporation and holder of 21 honorary college degrees, was awarded an honorary diploma from the high school he left in 1906 after completing the eighth grade.

1961
Actor and comedian Eddie Murphy was born.

1962
The most winning jockey in the history of racing, Eddie Arcaro retired on this date after a 31-year career and accumulating over $30 million in winnings.

1964
The Beatles held the top five spots on the music charts.

1965
Today marked the first launch of the first nuclear reactor in space, the “SNAP 10A”. It was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base at 1:25PM and started generated power three and a half hours later. It stayed in operation for 43 days and generated 500,000 watt-hours of electricity during that time.

1966
The book The Source by James Michener was number 1 on the bestseller list.

1972
Freddie Hart’s “My Hang-up Is You” was on the top of the country music charts.

1985
The Baseball Player’s Association and the team owners agreed on this day to expand the league championship series from the best of 5 to the best of 7 games.



Source: "Your Day: April 3"

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