On This Day April 7

History Highlights

1776 – U.S. Navy Captain John Barry, commander of the warship Lexington, achieves the first American naval capture of a British vessel when he seizes the British warship HMS Edward off the coast of Virginia. The capture of the Edward and its cargo turns Barry into a national hero and boosts the morale of the Continental forces.

1948 – The United Nations establishes the World Health Organization (WHO) to promote “the highest possible level of health” around the globe. A major cornerstone of WHO is the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of disease. World Health Day is observed internationally every April 7.

1954 – President Dwight Eisenhower coins one of the most famous Cold War phrases when he suggests the fall of French Indochina to the communists could create a “domino effect” in Southeast Asia. The so-called “domino theory” guided U.S. strategy toward Vietnam for the next decade.

1961 – President John F. Kennedy lobbies Congress to fund the preservation of historic monuments in Egypt’s Nile Valley threatened by construction of the Aswan High Dam.

1969 – The U.S. Supreme Court strikes down laws prohibiting private possession of obscene material (Stanley v. Georgia). 

1970 – At the 42nd annual Academy Awards, screen legend John Wayne ropes his first and only Oscar: Best Actor for his role in the Western “True Grit.”

1978 – President Jimmy Carter cancels planned production of the neutron bomb.

1994 – Violence in Rwanda fuels the launch of what becomes the worst episode of genocide since World War II: the massacre of an estimated 500,000 to 1 million innocent civilian Tutsis and moderate Hutus.

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The Rolling Stones All the Songs: The Story Behind Every Track

Philippe Margotin and Jean-Michel Guesdon

Make It Big

Wham!

John Barry: An American Hero in the Age of Sail

Tim McGrath

True Grit

Starring John Wayne, Glen Campbell and Kim Darby, and directed by Henry Hathaway

The Essential Billie Holiday: The Columbia Years

Billie Holiday

A Beautiful Mind

Starring Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connelly and Ed Harris, and directed by Ron Howard

On This Day January 1

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Hank Williams: Gold

Hank Williams

Sounds of Silence

Simon & Garfunkel

The Meaning and Making of Emancipation

U.S. National Archives

Early Cigar, Cigarette and Tobacco Advertisements

D. M. Kalten

The Catcher in the Rye

J. D. Salinger

Frost/Nixon

Starring Frank Langella, Michael Sheen and Kevin Bacon, and directed by Ron Howard

On This Day December 11

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The Best of The Marvelettes: The Millennium Collection

The Marvelettes

Blue Hawaii

Elvis Presley

Edward VIII: The Uncrowned King

Piers Brendon

UNICEF (United Nations Children's Fund): Global Governance That Works

Richard Jolly

West Side Story

Starring Natalie Wood, George Chakiris and Rota Moreno, and directed by Jerome Robbins and Robert Wise

Something the Lord Made

Starring Alan Rickman and Mos Def, and directed by Joseph Sargent

On This Day December 4

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Greatest Hits

The Byrds

The Ultimate Collection: Roy Orbison

Roy Orbison

United Nations: A History

Stanley Meisler

I Was a Pan Am Princess of the Sky

Fumiko Takahashi

The Big Lebowski

Starring Jeff Bridges, John Goodman and Julianne Moore, and directed by Joel Coen

My Cousin Vinny

Starring Joe Pesci, Marisa Tomei and Fred Gwynne, and directed by Jonathan Lynn

On This Day October 24

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Live At The Apollo

James Brown

Life

Keith Richards

Queen of the Falls

Chris Van Allsburg

The George Washington Bridge: Poetry in Steel

Michael Aaron Rockland

Amadeus

Starring F. Murray Abraham, Tom Hulce and Elizabeth Berridge, and directed by Milos Forman

Dave

Starring Kevin Kline, Sigourney Weaver and Frank Langella, and directed by Ivan Reitman

On this Day May 11

Musical Milestones

1959 – The instrumental “The Happy Organ,” by organist-pianist Dave ‘Baby’ Cortez, is the No. 1 single for a week and becomes a fixture at roller skating rinks across the U.S. Cortez makes one more trip to the Top-10 during his career with “Rinky Dink” in 1962.

1963 – Little Peggy March wraps up three weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100 with “I Will Follow Him.”

1970 – The three-disk soundtrack to the Woodstock Festival is released and goes gold within two weeks.

1972 – John Lennon makes a guest appearance on “The Dick Cavett Show” and claims the FBI is tapping his phone.

1981 – Jamaican singer-songwriter and guitarist Bob Marley, who introduced international audiences to reggae music, dies of cancer at the age of 36. Marley is posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994, and in 2001, receives a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

1985 – Madonna has the No. 1 single with “Crazy for You,” from the soundtrack to the movie “Vision Quest,” starring Matthew Modine and Linda Fiorentino. The track garners Madonna her first Grammy nomination in the Best Female Pop Vocal Performance category.

1991 – “Joyride,” by Swedish pop duo Roxette, is the No. 1 single for a week.

1996 – Mariah Carey begins her second and final week on top of the Billboard Hot 100 with “Always Be My Baby.”

2002 – Ashanti maintains her hold on the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100 with “Foolish.” The track remains a chart-topper for 10 weeks.

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Woodstock: Three Days of Peace & Music

Various musical artists, including Joan Baez, Janis Joplin, Richie Havens, Jefferson Airplane, Santana, Jimi Hendrix and The Who

Legend: The Best of Bob Marley and The Wailers

Bob Marley and The Wailers

My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel

Ari Shavit

Deep Thinking: Where Machine Intelligence Ends and Human Creativity Begins

Garry Kasparov

The Secret Life of Salvador Dalí

Salvador Dalí

O' Brother, Where Art Thou?

Starring George Clooney, John Turturro and Tim Blake Nelson, and directed by Joel Coen