On This Day

What Happened in April 1908

Historical Events

  • Apr 3 Frank Gotch wins world heavyweight wrestling championship in 2 hrs
  • Apr 12 Fire at the Boston Blacking Company (producer of leather dyes), spreads by high wind, kills 19 and makes 17,000 homeless in Chelsea, Massachusetts
  • Apr 13 Groundbreaking for Philadelphia's Shibe Park, home of MLB Athletics (AL), 1909-54, MLB Phillies (NL), 1938-70, and NFL Eagles, 1940-57
  • Apr 16 Natural Bridges National Monument forms (Lake Powell, Utah)

Boxing Title Fight

Apr 18 Canadian champion Tommy Burns KOs Jewey Smith of England in 5th round at Neuilly Bowling Palace, Paris to retain his world heavyweight boxing title

  • Apr 20 12th Boston Marathon won by Tom Morrissey in 2:25:43.2
  • Apr 20 Opening day of competition of the New South Wales Rugby League.
  • Apr 21 American polar explorer Frederick Cook claims to have been the 1st person reach North Pole on this date (disputed)
  • Apr 22 Queensland beat NSW by 171 runs for their 1st cricket win at Gabba
  • Apr 23 Denmark, Germany, Britain, France, Netherlands & Sweden sign North Sea accord
  • Apr 24 Mr & Mrs Jacob Murdock and their children depart Los Angeles in a Packard Thirty, endeavoring to become 1st family to travel across United States by car; arrive in NYC 32 days, 5 hours and 25 minutes later
  • Apr 27 IV Summer (Modern) Olympic Games open in London

Famous Birthdays

  • Apr 1 Abraham H Maslow, US psychologist (humanistic psychology)
  • Apr 2 Christian "Buddy" Ebsen Jr., American dancer and actor (The Beverly Hillbillies - "Jed Clampett"; Breakfast At Tiffany's; Barnaby Jones), born in Belleville, Illinois (d. 2003)
  • Apr 4 Ernestine Gilbreth Carey, American author (Cheaper by the Dozen), born in NYC, New York (d. 2006)

Bette Davis

Apr 5 (Ruth Elizabeth) "Bette" Davis, American actress (Of Human Bondage; Jezebel; All About Eve), born in Lowell, Massachusetts (d. 1989)

  • Apr 5 George Schick, Czech conductor (Chicago Symphony, 1950-56; Metropolitan Opera, 1958-69), and educator, born in Prague, Austria-Hungary (now Czech Republic) (d. 1985)
  • Apr 5 Herbert von Karajan, Austrian conductor (Berlin Philharmonic, 1955-89), born in Salzburg, Austria-Hungary (d. 1989)
  • Apr 5 Jagjivan Ram, Indian independence activist and politician, born in Chandwa, Bhojpur, Bihar, British India (d. 1986)
  • Apr 6 Vano Il'ich Muradeli, composer
  • Apr 7 Le Duan, Vietnamese politician
  • Apr 7 Percy Faith, Canadian-American pop and easy listening composer and bandleader ("Theme from A Summer Place"), born in Toronto, Ontario (d. 1976)
  • Apr 8 Neil Lawson, British high court judge
  • Apr 9 Fred Lohse, German composer, born in Leipzig, Germany (d. 1987)
  • Apr 10 Aidan Crawley, British journalist and politician (Labour MP 1945-51), born in Benenden, Kent (d. 1993)
  • Apr 11 Karel Ančerl, Czechoslovak conductor (Czech Philharmonic, 1950-68; Toronto Symphony, 1968-73), composer, and Auschwitz survivor, born in Tučapy, Czech Republic (d. 1973)
  • Apr 11 Leo Rosten, American writer and humourist (Joys of Yiddish), born in Łódź, Russian Empire (d. 1997)
  • Apr 11 Masaru Ibuka, Japanese electronics industrialist (Sony Corp), born in Nikkō City, Japan (d. 1997)
  • Apr 11 Jane Bolin, first African American female judge, born in Poughkeepsie, New York (d. 2007)
  • Apr 12 Carlos Lleras Restrepo, President of Colombia (1966-70), born in Bogotá, Colombia (d. 1994)
  • Apr 12 Virginia Cherrill, American actress (City Lights; Lake Extra; Brat), born in Santa Barbara, California (d. 1996)
  • Apr 12 Robert Lee Scott, Jr., American General and Air Force pilot, born in Waynesboro, Georgia (d. 2006)
  • Apr 15 Eden Ahbez [George Aberle], American songwriter ("Nature Boy"; "Lonely Island"), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 1995)

Lita Grey

Apr 15 Lita Grey, American actress, born in Hollywood, California (d. 1995)

  • Apr 16 Ray Ventura, French jazz pianist and big band leader ("Tout va très bien, Madame la Marquise"), born in Paris, France (d. 1979)
  • Apr 18 Eric Spear, British film and TV composer (Coronation Street theme), born in Croydon, Surrey (d. 1966)
  • Apr 19 Joseph Keilberth, German conductor (Bayreuther Festspiele), born in Karlsruhe, Baden-Württemberg, Germany (d. 1968)
  • Apr 20 Wilhelmus Marinus Bekkers, Dutch Roman Catholic bishop of Hertogenbosch, born in Sint-Oedenrode, Netherlands (d. 1966)
  • Apr 20 Lionel Hampton, American jazz vibraphone player, pianist, drummer, and actor, born in Louisville, Kentucky (d. 2002)
  • Apr 21 Louis Hostin, French weightlifter (Olympic gold 1932, 36), born in Saint-Étienne, France (d. 1998)
  • Apr 23 Marcel Hillaire, German actor (Take the Money and Run, Seven Thieves), born in Cologne, Germany (d. 1988)
  • Apr 23 Frederick Hawkins, American dancer and choreographer, born in Trinidad, Colorado (d. 1994)
  • Apr 23 Myron Waldman, American animator (Fleischer Studio), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 2006)
  • Apr 24 Marceline Day [Newlin], American actress, mostly in silent films (The Cameraman; The Jazz Age; The Arm of the Law), born in Colorado Springs, Colorado (d. 2000)
  • Apr 25 Edward R. Murrow, American newscaster (Person to Person), born in Guilford County, North Carolina (d. 1965)
  • Apr 28 Jack Fingleton, Australian cricket batsman (18 Tests, 1,189 runs @ 42.46, 5 x 100s), born in Sydney, Australia (d. 1981)
  • Apr 28 Michael Fitzmaurice, American radio actor (Superman, Reported Missing, 14 Hours), born in Chicago, Illinois (d. 1967)

Oskar Schindler

Apr 28 Oskar Schindler, Austrian businessman and subject of the novel "Schindler's Ark" and the film "Schindler's List", born in Zwittau, Austria-Hungary (d. 1974)

  • Apr 29 Jack Williamson, American sci-fi author (Cometeers), born in Brisbee, Arizona Territory (d. 2006)
  • Apr 29 Philippe Brun, French jazz trumpeter, born in Paris (d. 1994)
  • Apr 30 Eve Arden [Eunice Quedens], American stage and screen actress (Stage Door; Our Miss Brooks; The Mothers-In-Law; Grease), born in Mill Valley, California (d. 1990)
  • Apr 30 Bjarni Benediktsson, 13th Prime Minister of Iceland (1963-70), born in Reykjavík, Iceland (d. 1970)

Famous Deaths

  • Apr 4 Josef Sucher, Hungarian composer and conductor (Aus alten Märchen), dies at 64
  • Apr 5 Gaetano Coronaro, Italian conductor, pedagogue, and composer (La Creola), dies at 55
  • Apr 11 Henry Bird, English Chess player and author (b. 1829)
  • Apr 20 Henry Chadwick, English-American Baseball HOF pioneer (1st rule book; created game stats eg. BA, ERA; box scores), dies at 85
  • Apr 22 Ellison Capers, American Brigadier General (Confederate Army), dies at 70