FEBRUARY 4: The Daily Flashback
1789: Electors unanimously chose George Washington to be the first president of the United States.
1901: Giacomo Puccini’s opera Tosca had its U.S. premiere.
1924: Louis Armstrong married Lillian Hardin, a pianist with King Oliver’s Creole Jazz Band, of which he is also a member. Lil encouraged her husband’s rising career, but the marriage fell apart, ending in a 1938 divorce.
1932: The first Winter Olympics were held in the United States at Lake Placid.
1938: Thornton Wilder’s play Our Town opened in New York City.
1955: James Brown recorded “Please Please Please.”
1956: Little Richard’s “Tutti Frutti” reached its US chart peak of No. 17, giving him his first hit. Pat Boone’s version of the song outcharted him, making No. 12 two weeks later.
1957: Smith-Corona began selling portable electric typewriters. The first machine weighed 19 pounds.
1959: A day after the plane crash that killed Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper, the Winter Dance Party tour continued in Sioux City, Iowa, with Fabian, Frankie Avalon and Jimmy Clanton as the new headliners. Waylon Jennings sang Holly’s songs.
1969: “Carl Perkins Day” was celebrated in Jackson, Tennessee.
1974: Patty Hearst was kidnapped in Berkeley, California, by the Symbionese Liberation Army.
1977: Fleetwood Mac’s landmark album Rumours was released. The LP set a record for most weeks at No. 1 with 31, and became one of the best-selling albums of all time, with worldwide sales estimated at about 40 million.
1978: The Bee Gees’ “Stayin’ Alive,” which features in the opening scene of the film “Saturday Night Fever,” hit No. 1 in the U.S., where it stayed for four weeks.
1980: The Ramones release their fifth album, End of the Century, produced by Phil Spector.
1999: Amadou Diallo, an unarmed West African immigrant, was shot and killed in front of his Bronx home by four plainclothes New York City police officers who were conducting a search for a rape suspect.
2004: The social networking website Facebook.com was launched.
2008: Phil Lesh, Bob Weir and Mickey Hart resurrected the Grateful Dead for a San Francisco benefit concert in support of presidential hopeful Barack Obama.
2017: Black Sabbath played the final concert of their farewell tour at the Genting Arena in their English home city of Birmingham.
1913: Rosa Parks
1940: George A. Romero
1945: David Brenner
1948: Alice Cooper
1959: Lawrence Taylor
1962: Clint Black
1975: Natalie Imbruglia
1975: Louis Jordan
1982: Alex Harvey
1983: Karen Carpenter
2009: Lux Interior
2013: Reg Presley
2016: Maurice White