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News, Events, Birthdays, History - April 23 - April 29

Birthdays

William Shakespeare - April 23, 1564
Shakespeare was one of England's most famous poets and playwrights, authoring at least 36 plays and over 150 sonnets.  In an odd coincidence of life, Shakespeare died on the same day - April 23rd - 52 years later in 1616.  His epitaph:  "Good frend for Jesus sake forbeare, To digg the dust enclosed heare.  Blese be ye man that spares thes stones, And curst be he that moves my bones". 

Barbara Streisand - April 24, 1942
Famous singer, actor, and director, Streisand was born in Brooklyn, NY.  

Edward R. Murrow - April 25, 1908
A European war correspondent for CBS in World War II, Murrow rose to prominence with his dramatic radio broadcasts, and moved on to television after the war.  A movie released in 2005 entitled "Good Night, and Good Luck", chronicled the conflict between Murrow and Wisconsin senator Joe McCarthy related to McCarthy's hunt for communists within the U.S. government and society.

Ulysses S. Grant - April 27, 1822
Grant was the 18th President of the United States, elected in 1868.  He had been the Lieutenant General in command of all the Union armies during the Civil War, and received General Robert E. Lee's surrender of the Confederate Army at Appomattox Court House in Virginia.

Events

April 23, 1994 - The "Top Quark" is Discovered! 
What is the Top Quark?  Well, it's the last of six quarks predicted to exist.  It joins the five other quarks - the "up quark", the "down quark", the "strange quark", the "charm quark", and the "bottom quark".    Make sense yet?  OK - quarks are subatomic particles - smaller than protons and neutrons, and found in the nuclei of atoms, and a bunch of physicists had predicted that we would find six of them.  So this discovery was a big deal, in that it validated that theory. 

April 25, 1990 - Hubble Telescope Deployed
The telescope - named after American astronomer Edwin Hubble - is one of the largest and most versatile telescopes and has become a vital research tool.  Hubble's position outside the Earth's atmosphere allows it to take extremely sharp images with almost no background light.
Hubble's early days were troubled, however.  The first images received back in 1990 revealed that the telescope lenses were defective...and it's pictures were blurry.  A space shuttle crew came to the rescue in 1993, conducting the repairs and replacements.  There have been three other similar repair missions since that time.


April 28, 1789 - Mutiny on the Bounty
On board the HMS Bounty, Captain William Bligh was piloting his ship to Jamaica with a load of breadfruit tree plants.  His mean-tempered approach to his duties didn't sit well with the crew, and he - along with 23 of his officers and followers - was set adrift on the open seas in a 23-foot dinghy.  They survived a 47-day, 3,600 mile voyage in that little boat, landing on the island of Timor on June 14th.  The mutinous crew later set up residence on Pitcairn island and apparently thrived there undiscovered until 1856.

April 29, 1992 - Los Angeles Riots
A jury in Los Angeles found four Los Angeles police officers not guilty of charges associated with their videotaped beating of L.A. resident Rodney King.  The verdict touched off several days of rioting, looting, burning and violence in South Central L.A.