Historical Events in April 1981

Film & TV History

Apr 1 CNN airs a videotape that shows that Tamara Rand predicted that Reagan is in danger from someone named Jack Humley (a hoax)

  • Apr 1 Daylight saving time is introduced in the USSR.

Sports History

Apr 1 Edmonton center Wayne Gretzky has an assist (his 103rd) in the Oilers 4-4 tie with Colorado Rockies to break Bobby Orr's 10-year mark for most assists in a single NHL season

  • Apr 2 Belgium's 4th government of Martens resigns
  • Apr 2 Heavy battle between Christian militia & Syrian army in East Lebanon
  • Apr 3 Arnie Boldt of Saskatchewan jumps 6' 8.25," with 1 leg
  • Apr 3 Race riots in London's Brixton area, England
  • Apr 4 135th Grand National: Bob Champion aboard 10/1 hope Aldaniti wins by 4 lengths from 8/1 favourite Spartan Missile
  • Apr 4 26th Eurovision Song Contest: Bucks Fizz for United Kingdom wins singing "Making Your Mind Up" in Dublin
  • Apr 4 Henry Cisneros becomes 1st Mexican-American mayor (San Antonio)
  • Apr 5 Philadelphia Flyers amass a record 2,621 penalty minutes
  • Apr 6 Belgian government of Mark Eyskens forms
  • Apr 6 Yugoslav government sends troops to Kosovo

Album Release

Apr 7 "Street Songs" 5th studio album by Rick James is released (Billboard Album of the Year 1981)

  • Apr 7 Willem Klein mentally extracts 13th root of a 100-digit # in 29 sec
  • Apr 8 Islanders scored 9 goals against Toronto in playoffs

Sports History

Apr 9 LA Dodgers Fernando Valenzuela's 1st start, beats Astros 2-0

  • Apr 9 US sub George Washington rams Japanese freighter Nisso Maru
  • Apr 10 Computer glitch keeps Space Shuttle Columbia grounded
  • Apr 10 France performs nuclear test
  • Apr 10 Imprisoned Provisional IRA hunger striker Bobby Sands elected to British Parliament for Northern Ireland county of Fermanagh and South Tyrone

Boxing Title Fight

Apr 11 Larry Holmes beats Trevor Berbick by unanimous decision in Las Vegas to retain his WBC heavyweight boxing title

  • Apr 11 Race riot in London area of Brixton
  • Apr 11 Ronald Reagan arrives home from hospital after Hinkley shot him

US Masters Golf

Apr 12 45th US Masters Tournament, Augusta National GC: Tom Watson wins his second green jacket and 5th major title by 2 strokes over Jack Nicklaus and Johnny Miller

  • Apr 12 Maiden voyage Space Transit System-space shuttle Columbia launched
  • Apr 13 Pulitzer prize awarded to Beth Henley for "Crimes of the Heart"
  • Apr 13 Washington Post journalist Janet Cooke wins Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing; she later admits story was a hoax and returns the prize
  • Apr 14 1st Space Shuttle, Columbia 1, returns to Earth
  • Apr 15 Janet Cooke says her Pulitzer award-winning story about an 8-year-old heroin addict is a lie, Washington Post relinquishes Pulitzer Prize on fabricated story
  • Apr 16 "Copperfield" opens at ANTA Theater NYC for 13 performances

Music History

Apr 17 Carl Gottlieb's movie "Caveman", starring Ringo Starr, Shelley Long, Barbara Bach, Dennis Quaid, Jack Gilford, and John Matuszak premieres

  • Apr 17 New York Islander Dennis Potvin's 3 playoff power-play goals vs Edmonton Oilers tie NHL record
  • Apr 17 Ranger's Anders Hedberg is 2nd to score on a Stanley Cup penalty shot
  • Apr 18 Longest game in Professional Baseball: Pawtucket Red Sox tie Rochester Red Wings 2-2 in 32 innings (game resumed 23rd June)
  • Apr 19 Oakland A's runs record to 11-0
  • Apr 19 William Finn's musical "March of Falsettos" premieres in NYC
  • Apr 20 "Fire and Smoke" single released by Earl Thomas Conley (Billboard Song of the Year 1981)
  • Apr 20 85th Boston Marathon: Toshihiko Seko of Japan wins men's race in 2:09:26; Allison Roe of New Zealand takes women's title in 2:26:46
  • Apr 20 Final performance of TV show "Soap" airs
  • Apr 20 Rocker Papa John Phillips arrested for drug possession
  • Apr 21 US furnish $1 billion in arms to Saudi-Arabia
  • Apr 22 10,000 copper workers in Chile strike
  • Apr 22 Almost 1 million West German metal workers go on strike
  • Apr 22 Dodgers rookie Fernando Valenzuela tosses his 3rd shutout in 4 starts
  • Apr 22 More than $3.3 million is stolen from the First National Bank of Arizona in Tucson in the then largest US bank robbery in history
  • Apr 22 USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR

Sports History

Apr 24 Bill Shoemaker wins his 8,000th race, 2000 more than any other jockey

  • Apr 24 San Antonio blocks 20 Golden State shots to set NBA reg game record
  • Apr 24 US ends grain embargo against USSR
  • Apr 25 More than 100 workers are exposed to radiation during repairs of a nuclear power plant in Tsuruga, Japan
  • Apr 25 Seattle Mariners MLB manager Maury Wills is suspended for 2 games after ordering Kingdome grounds crew to enlarge batter's boxes by one foot
  • Apr 26 "Copperfield" closes at ANTA Theater, NYC, after 13 performances
  • Apr 27 1st female soccer official is hired by NASL

Music History

Apr 27 Paul McCartney's solo rock band Wings breaks-up

  • Apr 27 Xerox PARC introduces the computer mouse
  • Apr 28 "We’re Fighting Back" premieres on CBS in the US, based on the formation of the Guardian Angels
  • Apr 28 Galician current Statute of Autonomy

Baseball Record

Apr 29 MLB Philadelphia Phillies Steve Carlton is 1st lefty to strike out 3,000 batters

  • Apr 29 NFL Draft: South Carolina running back George Rogers first pick by New Orleans Saints
  • Apr 30 "Can-Can" opens at Minskoff Theater NYC for 5 performances