MILESTONES: May 20 birthdays for Cher, David Wells, David Paterson
NOTABLE PEOPLE BORN ON THIS DAY include Pro Football Hall of Famer Bud Grant, who was born in 1927; “General Hospital” star Constance Towers, who was born in 1933; Japanese home run king Sadaharu Oh, who was born in 1940; Oscar-winner Cher, who was born in 1946; “SCTV” star Dave Thomas, who was born in 1949; former New York Gov. David Paterson, who was born in Brooklyn in 1954; “Relic” author Douglas Preston, who was born in 1956; The Go-Go’s founder Jane Wiedlin, who was born in 1958; “Scandal” star Tony Goldwyn, who was born in 1960; former Yankees pitcher and 1998 ALCS MVP David Wells, who was born in 1963; “Deadwood” star Timothy Olyphant, who was born in 1968; NASCAR Hall of Famer Tony Stewart, who was born in 1971; 12-time Grammy nominee Busta Rhymes, who was born in Brooklyn in 1972; and “Fight Song” singer Rachel Platten, who was born in 1981.
THE GREAT OUTDOORS: The Homestead Act was signed by President Abraham Lincoln on this day in 1862. It opened millions of acres of government-owned land in the West to settlers, or “homesteaders,” who had to reside on the land and cultivate it for five years.
A WONDERFUL LIFE: James Stewart was born on this day in 1908. The Indiana native is best known for his everyman roles and his work with directors Frank Capra and Alfred Hitchcock. His films include “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington,” “It’s a Wonderful Life,” “Rear Window”, “Harvey,” and “The Philadelphia Story,” for which he won his only Oscar. During World War II, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps, attaining the rank of colonel. He remained in the Air Force Reserves, was promoted to brigadier general in 1959, and was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal. He died in 1997.
Special thanks to “Chase’s Calendar of Events” and Brooklyn Public Library.
“Fear is an insidious and deadly thing. It can warp judgment, freeze reflexes, breed mistakes. Worse, it’s contagious.”
—James Stewart, who was born on this day in 1908