TODAY IN HISTORY – 7th April
1815: Bathurst, NSW is founded following its discovery by George Evens
1835: Major Thomas Mitchell sets out on his second expedition, determined to discredit the discoveries made by Sturt
1841: Edward John Eyre becomes the first European to cross the Nullarbor Plain, arrives in Western Australia
1851: Edward Hargraves proclaims the discovery of Gold at Ophir, NSW. A court later decides that Hargraves companions William Tom and John Lister found the Gold
1896: Edwin Flack wins the Men’s 1500 metres at the 1896 Sumer Olympics
1939: Sir Earle Page becomes the 11th Prime Minister of Australia
1927: The first public demonstration of a one-way videophone occurred between Herbert Hoover, then U.S. secretary of commerce, in Washington, D.C., and officials of the American Telephone and Telegraph Company (AT&T) in New York City
1963: American professional golfer Jack Nicklaus, a dominating figure in world golf from the 1960s to the ’80s and the winner of 73 PGA tour events in his career, won the Masters Tournament at age 23
2001: NASA launched the Mars Odyssey spacecraft, which reached Mars in October and transmitted photos and other data back to scientists on Earth
1962: The Beatles played at the Casbah Coffee Club, Liverpool without George Harrison who was ill. This was the group’s last performance before leaving for their third extended engagement in Hamburg, West Germany.
1962: While at Ealing Jazz Club, in Ealing, West London, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards met Brian Jones for the first time. Jones was calling himself Elmo Lewis and was playing guitar with singer Paul Jones, who was performing under his real name of P. P. Pond.
On this week’s US Top 5 singles chart; No.5, ‘Bridge over troubled water’ by Simon and Garfunkel, No.4, ‘Spirit In The Sky’, Norman Greenbaum, No.3, ‘Instant Karma’ by John Lennon, No.2, ‘ABC’ The Jackson 5 and at No.1, ‘Let It Be’, The Beatles
1978: The Police released ‘Roxanne’ as the first single from their debut album Outlandos d’Amour. The song failed to chart but when re-released in 1979, peaked at No.12 on the UK Singles Chart
1985: Wham! became the first western pop group to perform live in China, when they played at the workers gymnasium in Beijing
1988: During a European tour, Alice Cooper accidentally hung himself in a rehearsal when a safety rope snapped; he dangled for several seconds before a roadie saved him
1990: Motley Crue’s Tommy Lee was injured when performing a stunt during a concert, falling 20 feet from a lighting rig
1994: Courtney Love was arrested on drugs and theft charges after a reported overdose. At this time, it is said that Love was unaware of the fate of her husband Kurt Cobain
2015: The original manuscript of Don McLean’s ‘American Pie’ sold for $1.2m at a New York auction. The 16-page draft had been expected to fetch as much as $1.5m at the Christie’s sale. McLean said writing the song was ‘a mystical trip into his past’. The repeatedly mentioned phrase ‘the day the music died’ refers to the plane crash in 1959 which killed early rock and roll performers Buddy Holly, The Big Bopper, and Ritchie Valens.
1873: John McGraw, nickname Little Napoleon – American professional baseball player and manager who led the New York Giants to 10 National League championships
1938: Spencer Dryden, American drummer who helped create the sound of the psychedelic rock band Jefferson Airplane during its heyday in the late 1960s
1939: Brett Whiteley – Australian painter, from Woolongong NSW, who was admired for the sensuous power of his paintings and his superb draftsmanship
1939: Francis Ford Coppola – American motion-picture director, writer, and producer whose films range from sweeping epics to small-scale character studies. As the director of films such as The Godfather (1972), The Conversation (1974), and Apocalypse Now (1979)
1939: Sir David Frost – English talk-show host, journalist, and writer who was noted for his interviews of public figures, notably former U.S. president Richard Nixon, who, under Frost’s skillful questioning, apologized for the Watergate scandal.
1954: Jackie Chan – Chinese Actor & Director, best known for doing his owns stunts in various kung fu movies
1964: Russel Crowe – New Zealand born Australian Actor, winning an Academy Award for Gladiator in 2000
1972: Tim Peake – British Astronaut and Military Officer, first official British astronaut to walk in space
1498: Charles VIII, King of France – succeeded his father Louis XI by the age of 13 and reigned King from 1483, known for beginning the French expeditions into Italy that lasted until the middle of the next century. Born 30.06.1470
1939: Joseph Aloysius Lyons – Australian statesman who helped form the United Australia Party in 1931. As prime minister (1932–39), he saw the country’s economic recovery from the Great Depression and increased defense activity. Born 15.10.1879
1947: Henry Ford – American Industrialist, business magnate and founder of the Ford Motor Company who revolutionised factory production with his assembly line technique of mass production. Born 30.07.1863
1967: Australian Peter John Badcoe died in the Vietnam War, he was awarded the Victorian Cross for bravery, conspicuous gallantry and leadership on more than one occasion. Born 11.01.1934
2012: American television journalist Mike Wallace, who was noted for his aggressive, bruising style during interviews on the long-running TV newsmagazine program 60 Minutes, died in Connecticut.
2013: Les Blank – filmmaker was a pioneering documentarian whose nearly 50-year career included 43 films in which he delved into a peculiar assortment of topics, including regional music, cuisine, and folk culture. Born 27.11.1935