Notable events from our shared experience
Despite the popular image, the “hotline” between Moscow and Washington wasn’t red, and it wasn’t a telephone. It was teletype machines first tested for sending direct messages on Aug. 30, 1963 – partly in response to the Cuban Missile Crisis a year earlier. The first message: “The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog’s back 1234567890.”
About 250,000 people flood the National Mall in Washington, D.C., on Aug. 28, 1963, as part of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. Martin Luther King Jr. tells the crowd: “I have a dream.”
Singer-songwriter Elton John makes his first U.S. club appearance at The Troubadour in Los Angeles on Aug. 25, 1970. Among those in the audience: Neil Diamond, Quincy Jones, Leon Russell and future Eagle Don Henley.
Starring Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke, Walt Disney’s musical film Mary Poppins opens on Aug. 27, 1964. The movie is based on novels by P.L. Travers, who is introduced to a new generation nearly 50 years later by the film Saving Mr. Banks. (Watch a video below, from Disney, about music that was left out of Mary Poppins, and has now been brought back to life.)
“[R]adicals, hippies, yippies [and] moderates” protesting the Vietnam War and the political system besiege the 1968 Democratic convention in Chicago. As police beat and tear-gas demonstrators outside the convention hall, Hubert Humphrey is nominated for president on Aug. 28, 1968.
Althea Gibson becomes the first black competitor in international tennis on Aug. 28, 1950, when she beats Barbara Knapp of Great Britain in a first-round match at the U.S. National Championships (now the U.S. Open). Gibson would go on to win the U.S. Open and Wimbledon. She was also a professional golfer.
Thurgood Marshall is confirmed as the first African American justice of the U.S. Supreme Court on Aug. 30, 1967. Marshall was the lawyer who won the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education case, when the Supreme Court ruled that schools couldn’t be “separate but equal.”
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