On this Day May 19
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1925 – Religious leader and civil rights activist Malcolm X, born Malcolm Little (d. 1965)
1934 – Journalist, author and former PBS anchor and political debate moderator Jim Lehrer (d. 2020)
1941 – Screenwriter-producer-director Nora Ephron (“Silkwood,” “When Harry Met Sally…,” “Sleepless in Seattle,” “You’ve Got Mail,” “Julie & Julia”) (d, 2012)
1944 – Actor Peter Mayhew, best known for playing Chewbacca in the “Star Wars” movie franchise (d. 2019)
1945 – Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Pete Townshend, lead guitarist of legendary rock band The Who
1946 – Wrestler-actor Andre the Giant, whom most remember from his role as the giant in the movie “The Princess Bride (d. 1993)
1951 – Joey Ramone, born Jeffrey Ross Hyman, guitarist and lead singer of the punk rock band The Ramones (“Blitzkrieg Bop,” “I Wanna Be Sedated,” “Sheena Is a Punk Rocker,” “Rockaway Beach”) (d. 2001)
1952 – Singer, model and actress Grace Jones (“Pull Up to the Bumper,” “I’ve Seen That Face Before (Libertango),” “Private Life,” “Slave to the Rhythm”)
1992 – Grammy-winning pop vocalist Sam Smith (“Latch,” “Lay Me Down,” “Stay With Me”)
1749 – England’s King George II grants the Ohio Company of Virginia a charter of 200,000 acres stretching out from the forks of the Ohio River on the present site of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
1921 – Congress passes the Emergency Quota Act (also known as the Immigration Act of 1921), establishing national quotas on the immigration of foreigners into the U.S.
1935 – T.E. Lawrence, known to the world as Lawrence of Arabia, dies as a retired Royal Air Force mechanic living under an assumed name. He is just 46. The legendary war hero, author, and archaeological scholar succumbed to to severe brain injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident six days earlier. His death eventually led to development of the crash helmet. Lawrence was famously portrayed in the Oscar-winning 1962 movie, “Lawrence of Arabia,” by actor Peter O’Toole.
1962 – Marilyn Monroe takes center stage at New York’s Madison Square Garden as she sings “Happy Birthday” to President John F. Kennedy. About 15,000 people are on hand for the star-studded gala that takes place 10 days before JFK’s actual birthday.
2006 – Amid a firestorm of publicity and controversy, director Ron Howard’s adaptation of Dan Brown’s mega-bestselling thriller, “The Da Vinci Code,” debuts in theaters, starring Tom Hanks.
2016 – EgyptAir Flight 804, an Airbus A320 on a routine flight from Paris to Cairo, disappears over the Mediterranean Sea with 66 passengers and crew. It takes weeks to find signs of the wreckage, and while terrorism is suspected initially, investigators conclude that the aircraft broke up in midair after a fire broke out in the cockpit and quickly spread.
1958 – The “South Pacific” movie soundtrack, featuring the music of Rodgers and Hammerstein, is No. 1 on the Billboard album chart.
1960 – Disc jockey Alan Freed (a.k.a. “Moondog”), who introduced radio listeners across the U.S. to the music that came to be called “rock ‘n roll,” is indicted along with seven others by a federal grand jury in connection with a scandal over payola — the practice of accepting cash and gifts from music promoters in exchange for playing their records.
1973 – Stevie Wonder scores his third No. 1 single with “You Are the Sunshine of My Life,” which later garners him a Grammy for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance.
1979 – “Reunited,” by Peaches & Herb, is in the midst of a four-week run on top of the Billboard Hot 100.
1979 – Supertramp’s “Breakfast in America” — featuring the hits “The Logical Song,” “Goodbye Stranger” and “Take the Long Way Home” — reaches the top of the Billboard album chart and stays there for four weeks. The album goes on to capture two Grammy Awards.
1984 – Lionel Richie wraps up the second of two weeks as king of the pop chart with “Hello.”
1990 – Madonna starts a three week run at No. 1 on the Billboard singles chart with “Vogue,” off her “I’m Breathless” album.
2001 – Janet Jackson is queen of the pop chart as “All For You” achieves its sixth week as a No. 1 single.