1. 1965: First American walks in space
It was on this day in 1965 that Major Edward H. White II became the first American to do a spacewalk. Using a handheld jet propulsion device and a state of the art space suit, Major White was able to experience something only one other person had to that point. Major White had a 25 foot long tether that attached him to the spacecraft and his visor was gold-plated to help protect him from the unfiltered rays of the sun. White’s spacewalk lasted approximately 23 minutes.
2. 1956: Santa Cruz, California issues a ban on Rock ‘n Roll
This may sound like a recap of the plot of Footloose. Apparently on this day in 1956, Santa Cruz city officials issued a ban on rock ‘n roll music, claiming that it was ” detrimental to both the health and morals or youth and committee.” There reportedly had been a dance party held a the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium the night before where as many as 200 teenagers were in attendance. Chuck Higgins and his orchestra were on stage putting on a great show when just after midnight the police showed up and immediately shut the whole thing down. The police reported that the crowd was “engaged in suggestive, stimulating and tantalizing motions induced by the provocative rhythms of an all-negro band.” The ban obviously didn’t last long, but just two weeks later it was reported in Time Magazine that two other cities had also attempted the ban; San Antonio, Texas and Asbury Park in New Jersey.
3. 1937: Massive 580 ft. home run hit by Josh Gibson at Yankee Stadium
Not many people have heard about Josh Gibson since he played back in a time when the U.S.A. wasn’t in its best form, to say the least. Gibson played for the Homestead Grays out of Washington, which was a part of the negro leagues of that era. Because of this, the stats are very few and far between so there is no official records held by Gibson. But if you read reports of people who had watched him play you see claims that will blow your mind in regards to baseball hitting statistics. Many claim that he hit more than 800 home runs in his career and allegedly hit 84 in a single season. This of course would destroy the record held by either Barry Bonds or Hank Aaron (depending on your view on the Bonds scandal). It was reported that on this day in 1937, he hit a home run at Yankee Stadium that landed just two feet short of the top of the facade which measures out to be about 580ft. Interestingly, had he hit the ball just two feet higher it would have gone out of the park and reached an estimated 700ft. Gibson was diagnosed with a tumor in 1940 at age 35 and weeks later he suffered a fatal stroke. He died just three months before Jackie Robinson’s historic leap into the major leagues.