The board game Monopoly is born, Glamour begins publishing, a civil rights march in Selma, Ala., ends in violence, and Kathryn Bigelow makes Oscar history, all on this day.
1876: Alexander Graham Bell is granted a patent for what he calls an "Improvement in Telegraphy," which established the principle of the telephone.
1897: Dr. John Harvey Kellogg serves the world's first cornflakes to his patients at a mental hospital in Battle Creek, Mich. Rather than the sweeter breakfast cereal sold today, these cornflakes were an unsweetened addition to the diets of Kellogg's patients, who suffered from a variety of ailments, which he believed could be cured by a strict vegetarian diet and vigorous exercise. In 1906, his brother, Will Keith Kellogg, added sugar to the recipe and began marketing them as a breakfast food.
1933: The game Monopoly is created and trademarked by Charles Darrow in Atlantic City, N.J. Darrow was inspired by an earlier real estate game called The Landlord's Game that shared similarities with today's version of Monopoly, including renting properties, paying utilities and avoiding "jail," and created his own version, based on his favorite resort, Atlantic City. In 1935, Parker Brothers bought Darrow's game, helped him take out a patent on it and purchased his remaining inventory. The company then began mass marketing the game.
1934: TV broadcaster Willard Scott, best known for his work on "The Today Show," is born in Alexandria, Va. Scott is also the creator and original portrayer of both Ronald McDonald and Bozo The Clown.
1936: In violation of the Treaty of Versailles, German troops march into the Rhineland and other regions along the Rhine River, marking the first time since the end of World War I that German troops had been in the region. This was the first of the aggressive military actions of Nazi Germany that led to the outbreak of World War II.
1939: Glamour magazine begins publishing as Glamour of Hollywood.
1942: Televangelist Tammy Faye Bakker is born Tamara Faye LaValley in International Falls, Minn. She was married from 1961 to 1992 to televangelist, and later convicted felon, Jim Bakker and co-hosted the popular evangelical Christian television program "The PTL Club" with him.
1942: Michael Eisner, who was the chief executive officer of The Walt Disney Company from 1984 until 2005, is born in Mount Kisco, N.Y.
1944: Country singer-songwriter Townes Van Zandt is born in Fort Worth, Texas. He was notorious for his drug addictions and alcoholism before dying on Jan. 1, 1997, at the age of 52 in Smyrna, Tenn., from health problems stemming from his years of substance abuse. Although he struggled to find commercial success while alive, the 2000s saw a resurgence of interest in his music. Today, many of his songs, including "Pancho and Lefty," "If I Needed You," "To Live is to Fly" and "No Place to Fall," are considered standards of their genre.
1950: Pro Football Hall of Fame full back Franco Harris, who played all but one year of his 13-year career with the Pittsburgh Steelers, is born in Fort Dix, N.J. A nine-time Pro Bowl selection and the 1972 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year, he won four Super Bowl titles with the Steelers, including winning MVP honors in Super Bowl IX in 1975.
1956: Actor Bryan Cranston, best known for his TV roles on the sitcom "Malcolm in the Middle" and the drama series "Breaking Bad," is born in Canoga Park, Calif. He won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series three consecutive times for "Breaking Bad" in 2008-2010 and is also known for supporting roles in the films "Saving Private Ryan," "Little Miss Sunshine," "Drive" and "Argo."
1960: Former major-league outfielder Joe Carter, a five-time All Star who won two World Series titles with the Toronto Blue Jays in 1992 and 1993, is born in Oklahoma City, Okla. Carter, who also played for the Chicago Cubs, Cleveland Indians, San Diego Padres, Baltimore Orioles and San Francisco Giants during his 16-year career, is most famous for hitting a walk-off home run to win the 1993 World Series for the Blue Jays (pictured).
1960: Ivan Lendl, a former world no. 1 professional tennis player who has been described as one of the greatest tennis players of all time, is born in Ostrava, Czechoslovakia. He was one of the game's most dominant players in the 1980s and captured eight Grand Slam singles titles in his career. He competed in 19 Grand Slam singles finals, a record surpassed by Roger Federer in 2009.
1962: Pop singer-songwriter Taylor Dayne, best known for the hit songs "Tell It to My Heart," "Love Will Lead You Back," "Prove Your Heart" and "With Every Beat of My Heart," is born Leslie Wunderman in Baldwin, N.Y.
1964: Author Bret Easton Ellis, best known for the novels "American Psycho" and "Less Than Zero," is born in Los Angeles, Calif.
1964: Actress and comedian Wanda Sykes, best known for her regular role the sitcom "The New Adventures of Old Christine" and for her appearances on HBO's "Curb Your Enthusiasm," is born in Portsmouth, Va. Sykes is also known for roles in movies such as "Monster-in-Law," "My Super Ex-Girlfriend," "Evan Almighty" and "License to Wed," and for voicing characters in animated movies like "Over the Hedge," "Barnyard," "Rio" and "Ice Age: Continental Drift."
1965: A group of 600 civil rights marchers are forcefully broken up by state and local police with billy clubs and tear gas in Selma, Ala. Seventeen marchers are hospitalized, and the day was nicknamed "Bloody Sunday." Televised images of the attack roused support for the U.S. civil rights movement.
1967: Alice B. Toklas, the companion to writer Gertrude Stein for nearly 40 years, dies at the age of 89 in Paris, France. Toklas and Stein met in Paris in 1907 and hosted parties that attracted expatriate American writers, such as Ernest Hemingway, Paul Bowles, Thornton Wilder and Sherwood Anderson, and avant-garde painters, including Picasso, Matisse and Braque. Stein's bestselling memoir, published in 1933, was titled "The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas." The couple remained together until Stein's death in 1946.
1970: Actress Rachel Weisz, best known for movies such as "The Mummy," "About a Boy" and "The Constant Gardener," the last of which won her an Academy Award, a Golden Globe and a Screen Actors' Guild award, is born in London, England.
1971: Actor Peter Sarsgaard, best known for roles in movies such as "Boys Don't Cry," "Garden State," "Shattered Glass," "Kinsey" and "Green Lantern," is born at Scott Air Force Base near Belleville, Ill.
1974: Actress Jenna Fischer, best known for the sitcom "The Office" and movies such as "Blades of Glory" and "Hall Pass," is born in Fort Wayne, Ind.
1980: The Loretta Lynn biopic "Coal Miner's Daughter," starring Sissy Spacek, Tommy Lee Jones, Beverly D'Angelo and Levon Helm, premieres in theaters. Spacek's portrayal of Lynn would earn her an Academy Award for Best Actress and the movie earned six more Oscar nominations, including Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Cinematography.
1985: The song "We are the World" is released as a single, instantly becoming a worldwide commercial success and topping music charts throughout the world. The song, written by Lionel Richie and Michael Jackson, was recorded for charity to help raise funds for Ethiopian famine relief. The supergroup USA for Africa brought together for the recording featured the likes of Jackson, Richie, Stevie Wonder, Ray Charles, Bob Dylan, Hall & Oates, Billy Joel, Willie Nelson, Diana Ross, Smokey Robinson, Paul Simon, Tina Turner and Bruce Springsteen.
1986: Divers from the USS Preserver locate the debris of the space shuttle Challenger's crew cabin on the ocean floor. The Challenger had exploded 73 seconds into launch on Jan. 28, 1986, killing all seven crew members on board.
1987: The album "Licensed To Ill" by the Beastie Boys becomes the first rap album to top the Billboad 200 album chart. It would stay at No. 1 for seven weeks.
1988: Actor Divine, a drag queen often associated with independent filmmaker John Waters, dies of an enlarged heart at the age of 42 in Los Angeles, Calif. Divine, whose real name was Harris Glenn Milstead, is pictured here in Water's infamous 1972 film "Pink Flamingos."
1991: Baseball Hall of Famer James Thomas "Cool Papa" Bell, a Negro league baseball star often considered to have been one of the fastest men ever to play the game, dies at the age of 87 in St. Louis, Mo.
1994: In Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music, the U.S. Supreme Court rules that parodies of an original work are generally covered by the doctrine of fair use and do not require the copyright holder's permission. The case revolved around a parody of Roy Orbison's song "Oh, Pretty Woman" done by the rap group 2 Live Crew.
1996: Magic Johnson of the Los Angeles Lakers becomes the second NBA player to reach 10,000 career assists, joining John Stockton of the Utah Jazz.
1999: Film director Stanley Kubrick, best known for movies such as "Dr. Strangelove," "2001: A Space Odyssey" and "The Shining," dies of a heart attack at the age of 70 in Harpenden, Hertfordshire, England. He's seen here in 1975 on the set of his movie "Barry Lyndon."
2006: Photographer and film director Gordon Parks, best known for his photographic essays for Life magazine and as the director of the 1971 film "Shaft," dies of cancer at the age of 93 in New York City. He was also known for his activism and campaigning for civil rights, as well as for his writing, including his autobiographical novel "The Learning Tree."
2009: The Kepler space observatory, designed to discover Earth-like planets orbiting other stars, is launched.
2010: Kathryn Bigelow becomes the first woman to win an Academy Award for Best Director for her Iraq War thriller "The Hurt Locker," which also wins five more Oscars, including Best Picture.
2011: Charlie Sheen is fired from the sitcom "Two and a Half Men" by Warner Bros. Television following repeated misbehavior and weeks of the actor's angry media campaign against his studio bosses.
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