On This Day

What Happened in July 1961

Historical Events

US Women's Golf Open

Jul 1 US Open Women's Golf, Baltusrol GC: Mickey Wright wins her 3rd Open by 6 strokes, despite a 2nd round 8-over par 80

  • Jul 1 Haleakala National Park forms in Hawaii
  • Jul 1 KNDU TV channel 25 in Richland-Pasco-Kennew, WA (NBC) 1st broadcast

Baseball Record

Jul 2 Amidst 5 NY Yankee homers v Washington, Roger Maris hits 29th and 30th en route to 61 for the season

  • Jul 4 Walt Disney is one of the two main speakers on the Independence Day in The Rebuild Hills at Skørping in Denmark
  • Jul 5 80 die in collisions in Algiers
  • Jul 5 KUSD TV channel 2 in Vermillion, SD (PBS) begins broadcasting
  • Jul 5 St Louis Cardinals first baseman Bill White smashes 3 HRs & a double in 9-1 rout of LA Dodgers
  • Jul 6 Portuguese ship explodes near Mozambique, kills 300

Wimbledon Men's Tennis

Jul 7 75th Wimbledon Men's Tennis: Rod Laver of Australia beats American Chuck McKinley 6-3, 6-1, 6-4 for his 1st of 4 Wimbledon singles titles

  • Jul 7 James R Hoffa elected chairman of Teamsters
  • Jul 8 Fred Trueman takes 5-0 in 24 balls to rip through Aussies
  • Jul 8 Portuguese steamer "Save" breaks up off Mozambique, 227 die
  • Jul 8 Wimbledon Women's Tennis: In an all-British final Angela Mortimer wins her 3rd Grand Slam singles title; beats Christine Truman 4–6, 6–4, 7–5
  • Jul 11 30th All Star Baseball Game: NL wins 5-4 in 10 at Candlestick Park, San Francisco
  • Jul 11 Gene Kiniski beats Verne Gagne in Minneapolis, to become NWA champ
  • Jul 14 Finland's Miettunen government forms
  • Jul 15 "Donnybrook!" closes at 46th St Theater NYC after 68 performances

British Golf Open

Jul 15 British Open Men's Golf, Royal Birkdale GC: Arnold Palmer wins the first of 2 consecutive Open Championships, a stroke ahead of Welshman Dai Rees

Sports History

Jul 16 48th Tour de France: Jacques Anquetil of France scores his second Tour general classification category title

  • Jul 17 John Chancellor becomes news anchor of "Today Show"
  • Jul 18 Commissioner Ford Frick rules Babe Ruth's record of 60 HR in 154-game sched in 1927, must be broken in 1st 154 of 162 games
  • Jul 19 1st in-flight movie shown on TWA
  • Jul 20 Leslie Bricusse & Anthony Newley's musical "Stop The World - I Want To Get Off" premieres at Queen's Theater in London's West End
  • Jul 20 French military forces break the Tunisian siege of Bizerte
  • Jul 21 Launch of Mercury 4 (Liberty Bell) with Grissom
  • Jul 22 WBNB TV channel 10 in Charlotte Amaile, VI (CBS) begins broadcasting

Music Concert

Jul 23 American opera singer Grace Bumbry becomes the first black singer to perform at the Bayreuth Festival, Germany, she earns 42 curtain calls

  • Jul 24 Beginning of a trend, a US commercial plane is hijacked to Cuba
  • Jul 24 Edwin Newman becomes news anchor of Today Show
  • Jul 24 Roger Maris hits 4 home runs, in a doubleheader
  • Jul 25 Roger Maris hits home runs 37, 38, 39 & 40 in a doubleheader

Historic Event

Jul 25 In a speech John F. Kennedy emphasizes that any attack on Berlin is an attack on NATO

Music History

Jul 29 Bob Dylan is not seriously injured in car accident in New York City

  • Jul 29 Philadelphia Phillies lose, 4-3 to SF Giants at Connie Mack Stadium; 1st of MLB record 23 straight defeats
  • Jul 29 Wallis and Futuna Islands become French overseas territory
  • Jul 31 PGA Championship Men's Golf, Olympia Fields CC: Jerry Barber wins his only major title in a Monday 18-hole playoff with Don January (67-68)
  • Jul 31 31st MLB All Star Game (2nd), Fenway Park, Boston: First tie in history; called due to rain after 9 innings with the score, 1–1
  • Jul 31 Israel welcomes its one millionth immigrant

Famous Birthdays

Diana Spencer

Jul 1 Diana Spencer, English Princess of Wales, born in Sandringham, England (d. 1997)

  • Jul 1 Kalpana Chawla, American astronaut (STS 87) and the first woman of Indian descent to go to space, born in Karnal, East Punjab, India (d. 2003)

Carl Lewis

Jul 1 Carl Lewis, American sprinter and long jumper (9 Olympic gold 1984, 88, 92, 96), born in Birmingham, Alabama

  • Jul 1 Malcolm Elliott, British road cyclist (Tour of Britain 1988), born in Sheffield, England
  • Jul 2 Alba Parietti, Torino Italy, actress (Galagoal, Abbronzatissima)
  • Jul 2 James McNichol, actor (Fitzpatricks, California Fever), born in Los Angeles, California
  • Jul 2 Pat Dufficy, Westerly RI, female catcher (Colo Silver Bullets)
  • Jul 2 Michael Lindsay, Voice actor
  • Jul 3 Vince Clarke [Martin], British rock keyboardist, and songwriter (Depeche Mode; Erasure), born in South Woodford, Essex, England
  • Jul 3 Pedro Romeiras, Portuguese dancer, born in Lisbon, Portugal
  • Jul 3 Tim Smith, English musician (Cardiacs), born in Carshalton, Surrey, England
  • Jul 4 Connie Paraskevin-Young, American sprint cyclist (Olymp-br-88, 92, 96), born in Detroit, Michigan
  • Jul 4 Richard Allen Garriott, English-American computer game designer (Origin), born in Austin, Texas
  • Jul 5 Isabelle Poulenard, French contemporary soprano, born in Paris
  • Jul 5 Zlatko Saračević, Croatian handball player (145 caps Yugoslavia, 75 Croatia; Olympic gold 1996 Croatia), born in Banja Luka, Bosnia & Herzegovina (d. 2021)
  • Jul 6 Benita Fitzgerald-Brown, American 100m hurdler (Olympic gold 1984), born in Warrenton, Virginia
  • Jul 6 Kimberly Foster, American actress (It Takes Two), born in Fort Smith, Arkansas
  • Jul 7 Michael Kieran Harvey, Australian classical and contemporary music pianist and composer (GRETA - Concerto in No Need of an Orchestra), born in Sydney, Australia
  • Jul 8 Andy Fletcher, Britich synthesizer and bass player (Depeche Mode - "Just Can't Get Enough"), born in Nottingham, England (d. 2022)
  • Jul 8 Graham Jones, British rock guitarist (Haircut 100 - "Love Plus One")

Toby Keith

Jul 8 Toby Keith [Coval], American country singer ("Should've Been A Cowboy"; "She Never Cried In Front Of Me"), and actor (Broken Bridges), born in Clinton, Oklahoma

  • Jul 9 Ronnie Bowman, American bluegrass singer-songwriter, guitarist, and bassist (Lonesome River Band, 1990-2001; Band of Ruhks), born in Mount Airy, North Carolina
  • Jul 10 Jacky Cheung, Hong Kong singer and actor (Bullet in the Head), born in Hong Kong
  • Jul 13 Anders Jarryd, Lidkoping Sweden, tennis star
  • Jul 13 Lawrence Donegan, Scottish rock bassist (Lloyd Cole and the Commotions) and author, born in Stirling, Scotland
  • Jul 13 Stelios Manolas, Greek footballer and manager
  • Jul 13 Tim Watson, Australian rules footballer
  • Jul 14 Jackie Earle Haley, American actor (Breaking Away), born in Northridge, California

Forest Whitaker

Jul 15 Forest Whitaker, actor and director (The Last King of Scotland, Platoon), born in Longview, Texas

  • Jul 15 Lolita Davidovich, actress (Blaze, Jungle2Jungle)
  • Jul 15 Jean-Christophe Grangé, French writer and screenwriter
  • Jul 15 Scott Ritter, UN weapons inspector in Iraq
  • Jul 17 Jonathan Potts, Canadian actor, born in Toronto, Ontario
  • Jul 18 Elizabeth McGovern, American actress (Once Upon a Time in Amer), born in Evanston, Illinois
  • Jul 19 Campbell Scott, American actor, director and producer (Saint Ralph, Big Night), born in NYC, New York
  • Jul 19 Maria Filatova, Soviet gymnast (Olympic 1976, 80 Gold), born in Leninsk-Kuznetsky, Kemerovo Oblast, Russia
  • Jul 19 Hideo Nakata, Japanese film director, born in Okayama, Japan
  • Jul 19 Benoît Mariage, Belgian film director, born in Virton, Belgium
  • Jul 21 Don Wilson, American CFL football linebacker, 1987-98 (Edmonton Eskimos; Toronto Argonauts, British Columbia Lions), born in Washington, DC
  • Jul 21 Henry Ellard, NFL wide receiver (Washington Redskins)
  • Jul 21 Jim Martin, rock guitarist (Faith No More - "Real Thing"), born in Oakland, California
  • Jul 21 Amar Singh Chamkila [Dhanni Ram], Punjabi folk singer "The Elvis of Punjab", born in Dugri, Punjab, India (d. 1988)
  • Jul 22 Calvin Fish, English racing driver
  • Jul 22 Keith Sweat, American new jack swing singer, born in Harlem, New York
  • Jul 23 Martin Gore, English rocker (Depeche Mode - "Just Can't Get Enough"), born in Dagenham, Essex, England

Woody Harrelson

Jul 23 Woody Harrelson, American actor (Woody Boyd in Cheers), born in Midland, Texas

  • Jul 23 André Ducharme, Canadian (Québécois) humorist (Rock et Belles Oreilles) and author, born in Montreal, Quebec
  • Jul 24 Paul Geary, American heavy metal drummer (Extreme), born in Boston, Massachusetts
  • Jul 24 Kerry Dixon, English footballer
  • Jul 25 Katherine Kelly Lang, American actress (Brooke-Bold & Beautiful), born in Los Angeles, California
  • Jul 25 Bobbie Eakes, American actress (The Bold and the Beautiful), born in Warner Robins, Georgia
  • Jul 26 Andy Connell, British musician and composer (Swing Out Sister), born in Manchester, England
  • Jul 26 Gary Cherone, American rock vocalist (Extreme - "More Than Words"; Van Halen), born in Boston, Massachusetts
  • Jul 26 Yolanda Chen, Russian triple jumper (indoor record), born in Moscow, Russia
  • Jul 26 Dimitris Saravakos, Greek footballer (Panathinaikos F.C), born in Athens, Greece
  • Jul 26 Keiko Matsui (née Doi), Japanese jazz pianist and composer, born in Tokyo, Japan
  • Jul 27 Daniel C. Burbank, American astronaut, born in Manchester, Connecticut
  • Jul 27 Ed Orgeron, American College football coach (NCAA National C'ship 2019, Louisiana State University), born in Larose, Louisiana
  • Jul 28 David Huff, American drummer (Giant)
  • Jul 28 Scott E Parazynski, American astronaut (STS 66, 86, sk:95), born in Little Rock, Arkansas
  • Jul 28 Alexander Kurlovitch, Soviet weightlifter, born in Grodno, Soviet Union

Laurence Fishburne

Jul 30 Laurence Fishburne, American actor (The Matrix, CSI, Apocalypse Now), born in Augusta, Georgia

  • Jul 30 Reggie Roby, American football punter (3 × Pro Bowl; All-Pro 1984, 94; NFL 1980s All-Decade Team; Miami Dolphins), born in Waterloo, Iowa (d. 2005)
  • Jul 31 Chris Hinton, NFL guard (Minnesota Vikings)

Famous Weddings

Famous Deaths

  • Jul 1 Louis-Ferdinand Céline, French writer (Die Nacht), dies at 67

Ernest Hemingway

Jul 2 Ernest Hemingway, American author and Nobel laureate (The Old Man and the Sea), dies from suicide at 61

  • Jul 4 William Franklin "Frank" Smith, American actor (Cowboy & Bandit, Scarlet Car, Frontier Days), dies of lung cancer at 83
  • Jul 6 Cuno Amiet, Swiss painter and illustrator, dies at 93
  • Jul 6 Enrique Larreta [E Rodriguez Maza], Argentine diplomat and writer, dies at 86
  • Jul 6 Scott LaFaro, American jazz bassist (Bill Evans Trio), dies in a car accident at 25
  • Jul 8 Julián Bautista, Spanish orchestral and film score composer, and conductor, dies at 60
  • Jul 9 Alan Marshal, Australian actor (Lydia, Irene, Exile Express), dies from a heart attack at 52
  • Jul 11 Erskine Butterfield American swing and boogie-woogie jazz pianist, singer, and composer, dies at 48
  • Jul 12 Mazo de la Roche, Canadian author (b. 1879)
  • Jul 15 John E. Brownlee, Canadian politician (b. 1884)
  • Jul 16 [Louise] Sophie M E de Vries, actress (English Prof), dies at 88

Ty Cobb

Jul 17 Ty Cobb, American Baseball Hall of Fame outfielder (AL MVP 1911; Triple Crown 1909; 12 × AL batting champion; Detroit Tigers) and manager (Detroit Tigers 1921-26), dies of cancer at 74

  • Jul 18 Kit Guard, Danish actor (El Diablo Rides, Kid Courageous), dies of cancer at 67
  • Jul 23 Esther Dale, American actress (Curly Top; The Egg and I; Ma and Pa Kettle films), dies after surgery at 75
  • Jul 27 Theodore Chanler, American composer, dies at 59
  • Jul 31 Jesse Harper, American College Football Hall of Fame coach (Notre Dame 57–17–7), dies at 77