On this Day July 29
1974 – The Mamas & the Papas singer Cass Elliot dies in her sleep from a heart attack after playing a sold-out show in London. She is just 32. Rumors spread around the world, and continue today, claiming that Mama Cass choked to death on a ham sandwich. But an autopsy confirmed a heart attack as cause of death with no trace of food in her windpipe.
1978 – The soundtrack to the movie musical “Grease,” featuring John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John, reaches No. 1 on the Billboard album chart. It becomes the second best-selling album ever released and top-selling soundtrack in history with about 45 million copies sold worldwide.
1921 – Adolf Hitler becomes the leader of the National Socialist German Workers’ (Nazi) Party. Under Hitler, the Nazi Party becomes a mass movement and rules Germany as a totalitarian state from 1933 to 1945.
1996 – American track & field legend Carl Lewis wins his fourth consecutive Olympic gold medal in the long jump — propelling himself 27 feet 10 3/4 inches at the Summer Games in Atlanta. It is the ninth and final Olympic gold of Lewis’ storied career.
2000 – Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston, one of Hollywood’s highest-profile couples, tie the knot in Malibu, California during a ceremony estimated to cost around $1 million. The marriage lasts just five years.
Own a Piece of This Day
Grease: The Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
John Travolta, Olivia Newton-John, Frankie Valli and others
Chasing the Moon: The People, the Politics, and the Promise That Launched America into the Space Age
Robert Stone and Alan Andres
The Civil War: A Film By Ken Burns
Documentary directed by Ken Burns with narration by Sam Waterston, Jason Robards and Morgan Freeman