80 years ago today, an undersized horse named Seabiscuit defeated War Admiral in a miracle upset victory, winning The Match of the Century while uplifting the spirits of an entire nation engulfed in the Great Depression.
The butt of stable jokes for his laziness, the small, knobby-kneed thoroughbred liked to sleep and eat for long periods, but his unlikely victory over the Triple-Crown winner by 4 lengths became a symbol of hope to all Americans. If you’ve never seen the Oscar-nominated film starring Jeff Bridges and Tobey Maguire, WATCH the exciting trailer… (1938)
More Good News on this Date:
- Michelangelo’s paintings on the Sistine Chapel ceiling were unveiled to the public–a 12,000 sq ft canvas (1114 sq m) that took four years to complete and is widely considered his crowning achievement in painting (1512)
- The Strait of Magellan–the most important natural seafaring passage that connects the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans–was first discovered and navigated by a European explorer when Ferdinand Magellan entered at the southern end of South America on his historic circumnavigation voyage. (1520)
- Shakespeare’s tragedy Othello was first performed in London’s Whitehall palace (1604); likewise, the romantic comedy, The Tempest premiered (1611)
- The Cape Lookout, North Carolina, lighthouse was lit for the first time–with a Fresnel lens that can be seen for about 19 miles (1859)
- The first Library of Congress building opened its doors to the public (1897)
- Bosnia peace talks opened in Dayton, Ohio (1995)
- Holidays on this day: Mexico–Day of the Dead; Catholicism–All Saints Day; Independence Day (from Britain in 1981) for Antigua and Barbuda; and it’s Algeria Day.
And on this day in 1941, American photographer Ansel Adams took a picture of a moonrise in the half-light between sunset and dark that would become one of the most famous images in the history of photography.
While driving through the countryside, Adams pulled off to the side of Route 84 when he saw a church and cemetery near Hernandez, New Mexico. Desperate to capture the image in the fading light, he, his son and another passenger scrambled to set up the tripod and camera, knowing that only moments remained before the light was gone. He only managed to produce one exposure before the sunlight lifted from the gravesite’s crosses at 4:49 pm. WATCH a clip of Ansel recounting the shot… and click to enlarge the image.
Also, Happy 61st birthday to country singer and actor Lyle Lovett, He earned Bachelor of Arts degrees in both German and Journalism and started playing music in small bars on the Texas A&M campus.
He was once married to Julia Roberts, supported Dire Straits on their 1990 world tour, and won four Grammy Awards for his records. (1957)