|1944 Fun Facts, Trivia and History|
Quick Facts from 1944:
|Top Ten Baby Names of 1944: |
Mary, Barbara, Linda, Patricia, Carol, James, Robert, John, William, Richard
|US Life Expectancy: |
1944 Males: 63.6 years, Females: 66.8 years
|The Stars: |
Lauren Bacall, Ingrid Bergman, Betty Grable, Rita Hayworth, Lena Horne, Veronica Lake, Carole Landis, Alexis Smith, Jane Russell, Gene Tierney, Lana Turner
|Miss America: Venus Ramey (Washington, DC)|
|Time Magazine’s Man of the Year: Dwight D. Eisenhower|
Firsts, Inventions, and Wonders:
The United Negro College Fund was incorporated.
The New York Times didn’t mention the word ‘pizza until’ 1944, 40 years after the first pizzeria came to New York City.
The original stage version of The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams premiered in Chicago.
Florence Foster Jenkins gave a recital in Carnegie Hall.
Pop Culture News:
Hitler gave orders to destroy Paris on the eve of the allied liberation in 1944 but the Nazi German General Dietrich von Choltitz (in command) deliberately ignored the order. Frenchman Pierre Taittinger probably talked him out of giving the order.
The 1944 Summer Olympics, scheduled for London (together with the February Winter Olympics scheduled for Cortina d’Ampezzo in Italy), were suspended due to WWII.
Baseball Legend Jackie Robinson was once ordered to move to the back of a bus while in uniform. Robinson refused and received a court-martial. An army court found that Robinson was completely within his rights, and fully acquitted the future baseball star.
Big Band composer/musician Glenn Miller went missing in action over the English Channel in 1944 and no trace of him has ever been found.
In 1944, Russia captured an American B-29 bomber. Stalin demanded exact clones be made for the Russian air force. A small hole was found on the left wing of the captured aircraft as a result of a manufacturing mistake. All Russian TU-4 bombers included the unnecessary hole in the left wing. #copycat
The term ‘Gaslighting’ comes from a 1938 play and a 1944 movie called Gas Light.
Hans Asperger published his paper on Asperger syndrome. He later said “It seems that for success in science and art, a dash of autism is essential. The necessary ingredient may be an ability to turn away from the everyday world, to rethink a subject with originality so as to create in new untrodden ways.”
The US and the USSR’s only direct military confrontation happened in October 1944, over the Serbian town of Niš, Serbia. It is considered top secret by both governments, and the exact number of casualties is unknown.
The cause of Celiac (Coeliac) Disease, the intolerance to gluten, was discovered during the Dutch famine of 1944 when wheat was scarce.
A crossword puzzle was printed in The Daily Telegraph with some answers containing D-Day operation “code names”, which sent MI-5 into a panic thinking their invasion plans had been discovered. The code words included: Utah, Neptune, Omaha, Mulberry, and Overlord.
The New York Dodgers, Giants, and Yankees played a “tri-cornered game,” which consisted of all three teams competing against each other and rotating between fielding, batting, and resting.
Cleveland East Ohio Gas Explosion: An above-ground natural gas storage tank began to leak. The gas eventually made its way into the sewers of Cleveland and ignited, blowing manhole covers miles away and shooting flames up through the plumbing of homes. 130 people were killed.
“Only you can prevent forest fires”
|Broadway Show: |
Harvey (Play) Opened on November 1, 1944, and Closed: January 15, 1949
|Nobel Prize Winners:|
Physics – Isidor Isaac Rabi
Chemistry – Otto Hahn*
Medicine – Joseph Erlanger, Herbert Spencer Gasser
Literature – Johannes V. Jensen
Peace – International Committee of the Red Cross
*Even though Lise Meitner co-discovered nuclear fission of uranium, she did not receive the 1944 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for that discovery. Only her associate, Otto Hahn, did. In the 1990s the decision was called ‘unjust’ by many scientists and she has several posthumous awards since then, including naming chemical element 109 meitnerium after her in 1992.
|Popular and Notable Books From 1944:|
A Bell for Adano by John Hersey
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
The Apostle by Sholem Asch
Forever Amber by Kathleen Winsor
The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams
Green Dolphin Street by Elizabeth Goudge
The Green Years by A.J. Cronin
Leave Her to Heaven by Ben Ames Williams
The Razor’s Edge by W. Somerset Maugham
The Robe by Lloyd C. Douglas
Strange Fruit by Lillian Smith
The Tall Book of Nursery Tales by Feodor Rojankovsky
World Series Champions: St. Louis Cardinals
NFL Champs: Green Bay Packers
Stanley Cup Champs: Montreal Canadians
U.S. Open Golf: Not played due to WWII
U.S. Tennis (Men/Ladies): Sgt. Frank Parker/Pauline Betz
Wimbledon (Men/Women): not held
NCAA Football Champions: Army
NCAA Basketball Champions: Utah
Kentucky Derby Winner: Pensive
Boston Marathon Winner: Gérard Côté Time: 2:31:50