On This Day

Historical Events in May 1953

  • May 2 79th Kentucky Derby: Hank Moreno aboard Dark Star wins in 2:02
  • May 2 Feisal II installed as King of Iraq
  • May 2 Hussein I installed as King of Jordan
  • May 3 WTVO TV channel 17 in Rockford, IL (NBC) begins broadcasting
  • May 3 Westchester conference of American Library Association proclaims "Freedom to Read"

Historic Event

May 4 Pulitzer Prize for Literature awarded to Ernest Hemingway for "The Old Man & The Sea"

  • May 6 MLB St. Louis Browns Alva "Bobo" Holloman, in his first start game as starting pitcher, no-hits visiting Philadelphia A's, 6-0
  • May 7 "Can Can" opens at Shubert Theater NYC for 892 performances
  • May 7 Record 537-kg swordfish is caught by LE Marron, in Chile

Music Premiere

May 7 Cole Porter's musical "Can-Can" opens at the Shubert Theatre, NYC; runs for 892 performances

  • May 8 WIPB TV channel 49 in Muncie, IN (PBS) begins broadcasting
  • May 10 KCBD TV channel 11 in Lubbock, TX (NBC) begins broadcasting
  • May 11 Tornado kills 114 in Waco Texas ($39M damage)
  • May 12 KUHT TV channel 8 (PBS) in Houston, TX, begins broadcasting

Baseball Record

May 13 NY Giants Willie Mays & Darryl Spencer each hit 2 HRs & a triple

Boxing Title Fight

May 15 In his first world heavyweight title defence, Rocky Marciano KOs former champion Jersey Joe Walcott in the 1st round at Chicago Stadium

  • May 15 Osip Zadkine's monument to "The destroyed city" unveiled in Rotterdam
  • May 16 Phillies Curt Simmons gives up a single, then retires next 27 in a row
  • May 17 Yanks & Browns use record 41 players in a game
  • May 18 American Jacqueline Cochran becomes the first woman to break the sound barrier
  • May 19 Nuclear explosion in Nevada (fall-out in St George, Utah)
  • May 21 French government of RenĂ© Mayer resigns

Historic Event

May 22 US President Eisenhower signs Offshore Oil Bill

  • May 22 Yankee Irv Noren hits into a triple-play, Yanks beat Wash 12-4
  • May 23 78th Preakness: Eric Guerin aboard Native Dancer wins in 1:57.8
  • May 23 WHIZ TV channel 18 in Zanesville, OH (NBC/ABC) begins broadcasting

Catholic Encyclical

May 24 Pope Pius XII publishes encyclical Doctor Mellifluus

  • May 25 1st atomic cannon electronically fired at Frenchman Flat, Nevada
  • May 25 1st non-commercial educational television station-Houston, Texas
  • May 25 Braves Max Surkont strikes out record 8 Reds in a row
  • May 26 Dutch Convair crashes at Schipholweg, 2 die
  • May 27 Dutch social democratic/Dutch Liberal Party win municipal elections
  • May 28 Premier of 1st animated 3-D cartoon in Technicolor-"Melody"

Tenzing Norgay on the Summit of Mount Everest

May 29 Edmund Hillary (NZ) and Tenzing Norgay (Nepal) are first to reach the summit of Mount Everest as part of a British Expedition

Historic Event

May 29 500th anniversary of the fall of Constantinople and the end of the Byzantine Empire (to Ottoman Sultan Mehmed II)

  • May 30 1st major league network baseball game-Cleveland 7, Chicago 2
  • May 30 Indianapolis 500: Labelled "Hottest 500" due to high temperatures, Bill Vukovich wins first of 2 consecutive Indy 500 victories; Carl Scarborough drops out of race, and later dies of heat prostration

French Open Men's Tennis

May 30 French Championships Men's Tennis: Ken Rosewall of Australia wins his 2nd Grand Slam title, beating American Vic Seixas 6-3, 6-4, 1-6, 6-2

French Open Women's Tennis

May 30 French Championships Women's Tennis: Maureen Connolly beats fellow American Doris Hart 6-2, 6-4 for the 2nd leg of her Grand Slam

  • May 31 Lebanese president Camille Shamun disbands government
  • May 31 WSUN TV channel 38 in St Petersburg-Tampa, FL (IND) 1st broadcast