April 15, 2020
Day 106 of 366
April 15th is the 106th day of the year. It is Jackie Robinson Day in the United States, commemorating the day that the first black major league baseball player made his debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers and ended 80 years of color segregation in the league. If Major League Baseball was playing today, you would see the players and umpires all sporting the number 42 in Robinson’s honor.
Today is typically Tax Day in the United States, but thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, you have until July 15th to file this year.
Historical items of note:
- In 1452, Italian painter, sculptor, and architect Leonardo da Vinci was born.
- In 1469, Guru Nanak was born. He was the first Sikh guru.
- In 1707, Swiss mathematician and physicist Leonhard Euler was born.
- In 1736, the Kingdom of Corsica was founded.
- In 1738, the Italian opera Serse by George Frideric Handel premiered in London, England.
- In 1755, Samuel Johnson’s A Dictionary of the English Language was published in London.
- In 1783, the preliminary articles of peace ending the American Revolutionary War were ratified.
- In 1817, Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet and Laurent Clerc founded the American School for the Deaf. Established in Hartford, Connecticut, it was the first American school for deaf students.
- In 1892, the General Electric Company was formed.
- In 1912, the RMS Titanic sank in the North Atlantic Ocean at 2:20 a.m., two hours and forty minutes after hitting an iceberg. Only 710 of 2,227 passengers and crew on board survived.
- In 1922, actor Michael Ansara was born.
- In 1923, insulin became generally available for use by people with diabetes.
- In 1924, Rand McNally published its first road atlas.
- In 1933, actress Elizabeth Montgomery was born.
- In 1947, Jackie Robinson debuted for the Brooklyn Dodgers, breaking baseball’s color line.
- In 1948, composer Michael Kamen was born.
- In 1955, Ray Kroc opened a McDonald’s restaurant in Des Plaines, Illinois, effective founding the franchise.
- In 1959, English actress, comedian, author, activist and screenwriter Emma Thompson was born.
- In 1960, Ella Baker led a conference at Shaw University in Raleigh, North Carolina that resulted in the creation of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. That group was one of the principal organizations of the civil rights movement in the 1960s.
- In 1962, voice actor Tom Kane was born.
- In 1990, actress Emma Watson was born.
- In 1992, William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, and DeForest Kelley were inducted into the National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame.
- In 1997, actress Maisie Williams was born.
- In 2019, the Notre Dame Cathedral fire was ignited, severely damaging the historic structure.
April 15th is observed as World Art Day, an international celebration of the fine arts which was declared by the International Association of Art (IAA) in order to promote awareness of creative activity worldwide.
The date was decided in honor of the birthday of Leonardo da Vinci, who was chosen as a symbol world peace, freedom of expression, tolerance, brotherhood, and multiculturalism as well as art’s importance to other fields.
The Thing About Today is an effort to look at each day of 2020 with respect to its historical context.
For more creativity with a critical eye, visit Creative Criticality.