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January 31st – Today In History

We take a look at some of the events that occurred on January 31st.

Today In …

1606 - Three conspirators in the Gunpowder Plot to assassinate King James I and members of Parliament were executed.

1865 - The 13th Constitutional Amendment prohibiting slavery was passed by Congress.

1929 - Activist Leon Trotsky was forced out of Russia.

1968 - The Tet offensive in the Vietnam War began.

1990 - McDonald’s opens its first restaurant in Russia (Moscow).

Sharing A Birthday Today…

Queen Beatrix Wilhelmina Armgard, monarch of the Netherlands, was born in 1938

Ernie Banks a.k.a. Mr. Cub, the baseball hall-of-famer who played for the Chicago Cubs for eighteen years was born in 1931.

Carol Channing comedienne and actress who appeared on stage in “Hello Dolly” was born in 1921.

Minnie Driver, the actress who appeared in such films as “Good Will Hunting” and “Phantom of the Opera” was born in 1970.

Richard Gephardt, politician and former Democratic leader from Missouri, was born in 1941.

Anthony LaPaglia, the star of TV's "Without a Trace" was born in 1959.

Johnny Lydon a.k.a. Johnny Rotten, front man for the band The Sex Pistols who were behind such songs as “Anarchy in the U.K.” was born in 1956.

Suzanne Pleshette who costarred on TV’s “The Bob Newhart Show” was born in 1937.

Jackie Robinson, the legendary baseball player, was born in 1919.

Portia de Rossi, who costarred in the TV shows “Arrested Development” and “Ally McBeal” was born in 1973.

Nolan Ryan, renowned pitcher and baseball hall-of-famer, was born in 1947.

Jean Simmons, the renowned actress who appeared in such films as “Spartacus” and in the mini-series “The Thorn Birds” was born in 1929.

Justin Timberlake, a member of the boy band ‘NSync, solo artist and film star (“Alpha Dog”) was born in 1981.

We Said Goodbye To…

George Abbott the writer of such Broadway hits as “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum” and “Damn Yankees” passed away in 1995 at the age of 105.

Guy Fawkes, Ambrose Rokewood and Thomas Wintour, the conspirators in the failed Gunpowder Plot were executed. Fawkes was 35, Rokewood was 27 and Wintour was 34.

Sam Goldwyn, producer and founder of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) passed away in 1974 at the age of 91.

A. A. Milne, creator and author of Winnie-the-Pooh, passed away in 1956 at the age of 74.

Moira Shearer, ballerina and actress who appeared in “The Red Shoes” passed away in 2006 at the age of 80.

Eddie Slovik, in 1945, became the first member of the U.S. military to be executed for desertion since the Civil War. Slovik, a Private in the U.S. Army during World War II, was 24. Members of Slovik’s family have appealed to each President for a posthumous pardon to no avail.

Top Of The Charts On This Day In…

1970 - “I Want You Back” by the Jackson 5
1976 - “Love Roller Coaster” by the Ohio Players

Movie Moments In...

1986 - The film “Down and Out in Beverly Hills” premiered today. The film starred Richard Dreyfuss, Bette Midler and Nick Nolte.

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