1. 1936: Jesse Owens wins the gold medal for long jump
It was on this date in 1936 that the American athlete, Jesse Owens, won his second of four gold medals at the Berlin Olympics. Owens emerged victorious in the long jump event with a leap of 26 feet 5 inches. He credited the win to the technical training he received from the German born competitor, Lutz Long, whom he defeated to win the gold. Owens had a dominating performance at the Berlin games picking up gold in the 100m sprint, 200m sprint, 4x100m relay and of course the long jump. The medals were even more significant because Owens is an AfricanAmerican, and with the games being held in Berlin, Germany, led by Fuhrer Adolf Hitler. It was Hitler’s belief that the Aryan “Master Race” was far superior than any other that made Owens wins that much sweeter.
2. 2006: Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby released
This might not be the most important historical event, but considering it happens to be one of the funniest movies ever made as well as a personal favorite of mine I made an exception. On this day n 2006 the classic film “Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby” is released in theaters across the U.S. With lines like “if you’re not first, you’re last!” and “Shake and Bake” I genuinely feel as if this is another one of those movies that will live on forever, just because of the lingo. Starring the always funny Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly, especially when they team up together (Step Brothers for example) the movie is based of a fictionalized view of NASCAR racing in the United States. Ferrell plays the lead role of Ricky Bobby, who is the stereotypical arrogant and macho southern good old boy with his trophy wife and spoiled rotten little kids. Reilly plays Cal Naughton Jr who is Bobby’s best friend and fellow driver. I don’t know anyone who hasn’t seen this movie, but that doesn’t mean i’m going to give any spoilers myself though. Ferrell co-wrote the screenplay and was considered and executive producer on the film. NASCAR played a major part in the making of this film, even helping to create the vehicles used for filming.
3. 1892: The Lizzie Borden story
It was on this date in 1892 that the father and step mother of Lizzie Borden were found brutally murdered in their home outside Fall River, Massachusetts. Andrew Borden was a very successful bank president and business man that had married Abby Gray after his first wife passed away. Together they raised his two daughters, Emma and Lizzie but it was reported that the girls never got along with their step-mother. Lizzie was still living with her father at the time, even though she was 32 years old. During the time of the murders their were only two people home other than the victims, the maid Bridgette Sullivan, and their youngest daughter Lizzie. The evidence collecting at the time was minimal at best, fingerprint technology was available, but not yet trusted. The Fall River Police department refused to test the murder weapon, a bloody hatchet found in the basement. But it wasn’t long before Lizzie became the target of the investigation. She claimed to have been in the barn and when she walked in she found her father laying there on the floor. But the fact that no blood was found on Lizzie, plus her well-bred Christian background made it a quick and easy decision for the jury. Even though she was acquitted of all charges, there are many who always believed she was guilty of the crimes. Lizzie inherited a significant amount of money after her fathers passing and with that she moved to a different home where she would live until her passing 35 years later. Her story has been retold time and time again in books, TV shows, documentaries and even full length movies since.