Events - February 22
1630 - OK, movie-goers, this one’s for you! Popcorn was introduced to English colonists when Quadequine, brother of Massasoit, brought a bag of the stuff over to dinner this day. The featured movie was, um, there was no featured movie, as they hadn’t been invented. So, the Indians had a big feast and sat around and watched the sun set. It was kinda like a movie...
1879 - We won’t try to nickel and dime you with this nugget, but it is a fact that Frank W. Woolworth opened his first 5 and 10-cent store. Woolworth’s opened in Utica, New York. Sales at the first store were disappointing ... until Mr. Woolworth moved his operation to Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and later, to the entire U.S.A. Remember the lunch counter at F. W. Woolworth’s? You could get a burger and a real vanilla soda or a lime rickey there for about a buck. Those were the days...
1919 - The first dog race track to use an imitation rabbit opened -- in Emeryville, CA.
1923 - The first successful chinchilla farm opened -- in Los Angeles, CA. It was the first such farm in the U.S.
1931 - Maurice Chevalier recorded "Walkin’ My Baby Back Home" for Victor Records in New York City. The same tune was recorded 21 years later by Nat ‘King’ Cole and Johnny Ray. It became a major hit for both artists.
1941 - Gargantua the Great, “The world’s most terrifying living creature,” was married at Sarasota FL. The gorilla wed Mitoto in ceremonies at the Ringling Brothers winter circus headquarters. And, of course, everybody threw bananas instead of rice at the happy couple.
1949 - Gorgeous George and Ernie Dusek ushered in a brand new era in professional wrestling, with the debut of “flying leaps, sequins and schmaltz,” according to the sports scribes covering the event.
1954 - ABC radio’s popular "Breakfast Club" program, with longtime host, Don McNeill, was simulcast on TV beginning this day. The telecast of the show was a bomb, but the radio program went on to break records as the longest-running program on the air.
1956 - Elvis Presley entered the music charts for the first time. "Heartbreak Hotel" began its climb to the number one spot on the pop listing, reaching the top on April 11, 1956. It stayed at the top for eight weeks.
1958 - Roy Hamilton’s record, "Don’t Let Go", became #13 in its first week on the record charts. The song was the first stereo record to make the pop music charts. 1958 was the year for several stereo recordings, including "Hang Up My Rock and Roll Shoes" by Chuck Willis, "Yakety Yak" by the Coasters, "Born Too Late" by The Poni-Tails, "It’s All in the Game" by Tommy Edwards and "What Am I Living For" by Chuck Willis. Remember: If we were supposed to hear music in mono, we’d only have one ear! Thank you.
1965 - Filming began for the Beatles’ second movie, "HELP!", in the Bahamas.
1969 - Barbara Jo Rubin became the first woman to win a U.S. thoroughbred horse race. She was riding Cohesian at Charlestown Race Course in West Virginia.
1980 - A pivotal moment for ice hockey in the United States came on this day. The ‘Miracle on Ice’ U.S. victory over Russia was a dramatic, come-from-behind, 4-3, victory. The U.S. went on to defeat Finland, 4-2, two days later to win the gold medal.
1987 - Tze-Chung ‘T.C.’ Chen won his first PGA golf tour title in five years at the Los Angeles Open. Chen defeated Ben Crenshaw on the first playoff hole of the tournament.
1992 - Kristi Yamaguchi of the United States won the gold medal in women’s figure skating at the Albertville Olympics. Although she fell while performing a triple loop, she committed far fewer errors than her rivals, thus getting the gold medal. Midori Ito of Japan won the silver, Nancy Kerrigan of the United States the bronze. “Yamaguchi crafted her title on a feathery vision of artistic precision and elegance, with near total disdain for the latest trends in acrobatic jumping,” wrote Michael Janofsky in the New York Times.
1998 - As the Nagano Winter Olympics wound down, the Czech Republic defeated Russia 1-to-0 to win men’s hockey. And Bjorn Daehlie, the Norwegian cross-country skier, extended his Winter Olympics record by picking up his 12th medal (his eighth gold) in the last race at Nagano: the 50-kilometer cross-country race.
Birthdays - February 22
1732 - George Washington (1st U.S. President [1789-1797]; “I cannot tell a lie...” ; died Dec. 14, 1799)
1778 - Rembrandt Peale (artist: painted hundreds of portraits, member of the famous Peale family of artists; died Oct 4, 1860)
1810 - Frederic Francois Chopin (composer: of more than 200 compositions for solo piano; died Oct 17, 1849)
1819 - James Russell Lowell (essayist, poet: A Fable for Critics, The Biglow Papers, The Vision of Sir Launfal, Commemoration Ode, The Cathedral; first editor of Atlantic Monthly, co-editor: North American Review; founded The Pioneer literary magazine; died Aug 12, 1891)
1857 - Robert Baden-Powell (founder: British Boy Scout Association; died Jan 8, 1941)
1907 - Robert (George) Young (Emmy Award-winning actor: Father Knows Best, , Marcus Welby M.D. , The Bride Wore Red, Crossfire, Honolulu, Northwest Passage; died July 21, 1998)
1907 - Sheldon Leonard (Bershad) (actor: It’s a Wonderful Life, Guys and Dolls; Emmy Award-winning Director: The Danny Thomas Show [1957, 1961], and Executive Producer: My World and Welcome to It ; died Jan 10, 1997)
1908 - Sir John Mills (actor: Frankenstein, A Tale of Two Cities, Around the World in 80 Days, Gandhi, Oklahoma Crude, Ryan’s Daughter, King Rat, The Swiss Family Robinson, War and Peace, Great Expectations, Goodbye Mr. Chips, The Ghost Camera; father of actresses Juliet and Hayley Mills; died April 23, 2005)
1917 - Charles O. (Oscar) Finley (baseball owner: KC Athletics, Oakland Athletics: last team to win three consecutive World Series [1972-1974]; “He pinched pennies and built winners.”; died Feb 20, 1996)
1918 - Sid (Sidney) Abel (hockey: NHL: Detroit Red Wings [NHL MVP: 1949], Chicago Blackhawks; died Feb 8, 2000)
1918 - Robert Wadlow (‘The Gentle Giant’: held record for tallest recorded man: 8’ 11.1"; died July 15, 1940)
1926 - Bud Yorkin (Emmy Award-winning Director: An Evening with Fred Astaire  and The Jack Benny Specials ; died Aug 18, 2015)
1928 - Paul Dooley (actor: The Underneath, Flashback, Last Rites, Sixteen Candles, Endangered Species, Paternity, Slap Shot, Breaking Away, The Player)
1932 - Edward ‘Ted’ Kennedy (U.S. Senator from Massachusetts [1962-2009]; brother of 35th U.S. President John F. Kennedy and U.S. Attorney General Robert Kennedy; died Aug 25, 2009)
1934 - Sparky (George Lee) Anderson (baseball: Philadelphia Phillies; manager: Cincinnati Reds, Detroit Tigers; died Nov 4, 2010)
1936 - Ernie K-Doe (Ernest Kador Jr.) (singer/songwriter: Mother-In-Law; died July 5, 2001)
1940 - Chet Walker (basketball: Chicago Bulls)
1944 - Jonathan Demme (Academy Award-winning director: Silence of the Lambs; Philadelphia, Married to the Mob, Swimming to Cambodia, Swing Shift, Melvin and Howard, Last Embrace, Caged Heat; playwright: Fighting Mad, Caged Heat, Hot Box, Angels Hard as They Come)
1944 - Tom Okker (tennis: Men’s Professional Tour record holder for most doubles titles in a career )
1945 - Oliver (Swofford) (singer: Jean, Good Morning Starshine; died Feb 12, 2000))
1949 - Niki (Andreas Nikolaus) Lauda (Grand Prix Hall of Fame auto racer: victories: Spain, Holland ; Monaco, Belgium, Sweden, France, USA ; Brazil, S. Africa, Belgium, Monaco, Britain ; S. Africa, Germany, Holland ; Sweden, Italy ; USA, Britain ; S. African, France, Britain, Austria, Italy ; Holland )
1950 - Julius Erving II (Basketball Hall of Famer: Univ of Massachusetts, ABA: Virginia Squires [1971-1973], NY Nets [1973-1976], NBA: Philadelphia 76ers [Dr. J.: 1976-1987], the third pro player to score more than 30,000 career points [after Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem Abdul- Jabbar]; executive: Orlando Magic)
1950 - Miou-Miou (Sylvette Héry) (actress: Little Indian Big City, Going Places, Entre Nous, La Lectrice)
1950 - Julie Walters (actress: Just like a Woman, The Summer House, Mack the Knife, Pick Up Your Ears, Educating Rita)
1956 - Amy Alcott (golf champion: U.S. Open , Nabisco Dinah Shore [1983, 1988, 1991], Du Maurier Classic )
1959 - Kyle MacLachlan (actor: Twin Peaks, Blue Velvet, The Flintstones, Dune, In Justice)
1975 - Drew Barrymore (actress: Bad Girls, Irreconcilable Differences, E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, Altered States, Wayne’s World 2, Batman Forever, Scream, The Wedding Singer, Charlie’s Angels, Riding in Cars with Boys, 50 First Dates; autobiography [at age 14]: Little Lost Girl; daughter of actor/director John Barrymore Jr.; granddaughter of actor John Barrymore Sr.; great-niece of actors Ethel Barrymore and Lionel Barrymore)
Chart Toppers - February 22
Powder Your Face with Sunshine - Evelyn Knight
Far Away Places - Margaret Whiting
A Little Bird Told Me - Evelyn Knight
I Love You So Much It Hurts - Jimmy Wakely
Too Much - Elvis Presley
Young Love - Tab Hunter
Love is Strange - Mickey & Sylvia
Young Love - Sonny James
This Diamond Ring - Gary Lewis & The Playboys
My Girl - The Temptations
The Jolly Green Giant - The Kingsmen
I’ve Got a Tiger by the Tail - Buck Owens
Crocodile Rock - Elton John
Oh, Babe, What Would You Say? - Hurricane Smith
Dueling Banjos - Eric Weissberg & Steve Mandell
I Wonder if They Ever Think of Me - Merle Haggard
9 to 5 - Dolly Parton
I Love a Rainy Night - Eddie Rabbitt
Woman - John Lennon
Southern Rains - Mel Tillis
Straight Up - Paula Abdul
Wild Thing - Tone Loc
Born to Be My Baby - Bon Jovi
Big Wheels in the Moonlight - Dan Seals
Those were the days, my friend. We thought they’d never end...
Written and edited by Carol Williams and John Williams
Produced by John Williams
Those Were the Days, the Today in History feature
from 440 International
No portion of these files may be reproduced without the express, written permission of 440 International Inc.