70 years ago on this day, the first Tony Awards ceremony celebrated outstanding achievement in the theatrical arts. Formally known as the Antoinette Perry Awards for Excellence in Theatre, the awards got their nickname, “Tonys”, during the ceremony when the host handed out an award and called it a “Toni”, referring to the nickname of Antoinette, co-founder of the American Theatre Wing which organized the event. Some of the winners included…  (1947)

Actors José Ferrer, Ingrid Bergman, and Patricia Neal won awards, as well as director Elia Kazan, and plays such as Brigadoon and Finian’s Rainbow.

MORE Good News on this Date:

  • Peter the Great repealed his tax levied on men who wore beards, which was meant to encourage the beardless fashions of France, but infuriated Russians, who had always cherished long beards as sacred and preserved them with much care (1722)
  • The United States Congress convened in New York to begin its first regular session (1789)
  • The Jews of Prussia were granted equality (1848)
  • Matthew Henson, an African-American and Robert Peary, another American, along with four Eskimo guides, reached the North Pole (1909)
  • Post It Notes were introduced after a mistake in the 3M lab led one inventor to try using the weak adhesive to secure a bookmark in his hymnal (1980)



The first commercial communications satellite was placed in geosynchronous orbit. The tiny 2-ft Intelsat I (nicknamed Early Bird for the proverb “The early bird catches the worm”) was the first to provide direct and nearly instantaneous contact between Europe and North America, handling television, telephone, and fax transmissions. (1965)



And on this day in 1896, the first Olympic Games of the modern era opened in Athens–1,500 years after the original games were banned by the Roman emperor. Because Ancient Greece was the birthplace of the Olympic Games, Athens was chosen to stage the inaugural modern Games. Despite obstacles, the Games of the I Olympiad were regarded as a great success, attracting the largest international participation of any sporting event to that date. The Panathinaiko Olympic Stadium overflowed with the largest crowd ever to watch a sporting event. The highlight for the Greeks was the marathon victory by their compatriot Spyridon Louis. The most successful competitor was German wrestler and gymnast Carl Schuhmann, who won four events.