1. 1985: First Live Aid Concert
On this day in 1985, more than 13 satellites linked up to beam the live broadcast of the first Live Aid Concert all over the world. There were multiple concert venues all over the world participating, but the majority of the acts performed at either Wembley Stadium in London or JFK stadium in Philadelphia. The event was scheduled to last 16 hours and featured some of the biggest names in music all to benefit the famine relief in Africa. There were said to be more than 75 different acts performing, including Madonna, David Bowie, U2, Eric Clapton and Elton John. More than 70,000 people showed up to Wembley and a reported 100,000 at JFK, but that was a drop in the bucket compared to the estimated 1 billion that tuned in thanks to new satellite technology. Even though the event was organized in just 10 weeks, they still managed to raise more than $127 million to aid in the famine spreading through Africa.
2. 1930: The First World Cup
It was on this date in 1930 that the world’s most watched sporting event makes its debut in the city of Montevideo, Uruguay. The World Cup is the premier championship soccer (otherwise known as football) event that is held every two years, alternating men and women. The event usually lasts roughly two weeks with multiple rounds played, ultimately working up to the final where a world champion is crowned. Uruguay had won the gold medal in both the 1924 and 1928 Olympic Games, but it was announced as of the 1932 games that soccer would no longer be an Olympic event. This is when FIFA stepped in and decided to create a similar event that featured just soccer. The 1930’s brought the depression to Europe and many of the top European players were afraid to attend the tournament out of fear of loosing their jobs back home. The three-time Olympic Gold medalist England national team didn’t make an appearance at the first World Cup, nor did soccer powerhouses Germany, Spain and Italy. On the opening day of the tournament, the USA defeated Belgium 3-0, but in the end it was Uruguay that would come out victorious overall.
3. 1951: “Black Friday” record floods hit Kansas
It was reported that more than $760 million worth of damages were caused by the record floods that destroyed eastern Kansas on this date in 1951. Major towns like Topeka, Lawrence and Manhattan were hit the worst, an estimated 500,000 people were left homeless after more than 25 inches of rain in a matter of a few short weeks. From the 9th-13th it was reported that more than six inches fell. Rivers surrounding the area hit their capacity in a matter of days, so when the rains persisted there was nowhere for the water to go. Unfortunately, there was 24 fatalities caused by the flood. After this disaster, there were multiple reservoirs and levees constructed to help prevent anything like this from happening again. Those precautionary measures were put to the test in 1993 when similar rainfall plagued the area. However, this time the extra precautions worked and the damage was minimal.