January 31 in Pop Culture History

January 31st History, Trivia, and Fun Facts

January 31st History Highlights

  • 1940 – Ida May Fuller received the first Social Security retirement check, in the amount of $22.54. She lived to 100 years old and collected a total of $22,888.
  • January 31, 1929 Birthday (fictional) Dorothy Zbornak, TV, Golden Girls
  • If you were born on January 31st,
    You were likely conceived the week of… May 10th (prior year)

January 31st is…

Backwards Day
Brandy Alexander Day
Eat Brussels Sprouts Day
Inspire your Heart with Art Day
National Hot Chocolate Day

Now You Know…

What is the ONLY English word that ends in “mt”?


Ham, The First Space Chimp

Ham, the first chimpanzee in space, was only given the name “Ham” after successfully completing his mission, Project Mercury mission labeled MR-2 on January 31, 1961. He was known as Number 65 before that, as NASA believed that it would be bad publicity if a “named” chimp burned up in the atmosphere or otherwise died as a result of mission failure.

January 31st Birthday Quotes

Enjoying success requires the ability to adapt. Only by being open to change will you have a true opportunity to get the most from your talent.
– Nolan Ryan

To bear up under loss- to fight the bitterness of defeat and the weakness of grief- to be victor over anger- to smile when tears are close- to resist evil men and base instincts- to hate hate and to love love- to go on when it would seem good to die- to seek ever after the glory and the dream- to look up with unquenchable faith in something evermore about to be- that is what any man can do, and so be great.
– Zane Grey

You’re not meant to do what’s easy, you’re meant to challenge yourself.
– Justin Timberlake

There’s nothing glorious in dying. Anyone can do it.
– Johnny Rotten (John Lydon)

Science is clearly one of the most profound methods that humans have yet devised for discovering truth, while religion remains the single greatest force for generating meaning… if some sort of reconciliation between science and religion is not forthcoming, the future of humanity is, at best, precarious.
– Ken Wilber

We live in a time which has created the art of the absurd. It is our art. It contains happenings, Pop art, camp, a theater of the absurd … Do we have the art because the absurd is the patina of waste…? Or are we face to face with a desperate or most rational effort from the deepest resources of the unconscious of us all to rescue civilization from the pit and plague of its bedding?
– Norman Mailer

Listen, I’m not cool. Being cool is about keeping your blood pressure steady. So no. Don’t be cool. Be passionate. Be dedicated. Be tenacious. Be uncompromising. Be pissed. Be happy. Be sad.
– Justin Timberlake

January 31st Birthdays

1734 – Robert Morris, English/American patriot (died in1806)
1797 – Franz Schubert, Austrian pianist, and composer (died in 1828)
1872 – Zane Grey, American author (died in 1939)
1892 – Eddie Cantor, American singer-songwriter and actor (died in 1964)
1894 – Isham Jones, American saxophonist, composer, and bandleader (died in 1956)
1902 – Tallulah Bankhead, American actress (died in 1968)
1902 – Julian Steward, American anthropologist (died in 1972)
1914 – Jersey Joe Walcott, American boxer (died in 1994)
1915 – Garry Moore, American comedian and game show host (died in 1993)
1921 – Carol Channing, American entertainer (died in 2019)
1921 – Mario Lanza, American tenor, and actor (died in 1959)
1923 – Norman Mailer, American journalist and author (died in 2007)
1929 – Jean Simmons, English-American actress (died in 2010)
1931 – Ernie Banks, American baseball player and coach (died in 2015)
1937 – Philip Glass, American composer
1937 – Suzanne Pleshette, American actress (died in 2008)
1946 – Terry Kath, American guitarist and singer-songwriter (Chicago) (died in 1978)
1947 – Nolan Ryan, American baseball player
1949 – Ken Wilber, American writer
1956 – Johnny Rotten (John Joseph Lydon), English singer-songwriter
1959 – Kelly Lynch, American model, and actress
1960 – Grant Morrison, Scottish comic book writer
1964 – Martha MacCallum, American journalist
1967 – Fat Mike, American singer-songwriter
1970 – Minnie Driver, English actress
1973 – Portia de Rossi, Australian-American actress
1977 – Kerry Washington, American actress
1981 – Justin Timberlake, American singer-songwriter, dancer, and actor
1987 – Marcus Mumford, American-English singer-songwriter

January 31st History

Congress passed the 13th Amendment, abolishing slavery in America.

(Earthquake) Coastal Ecuador

(Earthquake) Eureka/San Francisco, Oregon/California

January 31, 1929 Birthday (fictional) Dorothy Zbornak, Golden Girls, TV

The United States launched its first successful orbiting satellite, Explorer-I.

The United States launched a 4-year-old male chimpanzee, Ham, on a Mercury-Redstone 2 rocket into test suborbital flight. Ham landed safely about 17 minutes later.

#1 Hit January 31, 1970 – February 6, 1970: The Jackson 5 – I Want You Back

Apollo 14 (January 31 – February 9, 1971) Crew: Alan B. Shepard, Stuart A. Roosa, and Edgar D. Mitchell

#1 Hit January 31, 1976February 6, 1976: Ohio Players – Love Rollercoaster

#1 Hit January 31, 1981 – February 6, 1981: Blondie – The Tide Is High

Down and Out in Beverly Hills was released in theaters.

The Wonder Years premiered on ABC

ABC Sportscaster Howard Cosell retired.

The Super Bowl (broadcast on NBC) featured Michael Jackson, marking the first time a solo performer existed during the show.

Star Wars (Special Edition) was released in theaters.

#1 Hit January 31, 1998February 13, 1998: Janet Jackson – Together Again

Family Guy premiered on Fox

January 31, 19** Mera (Queen of Atlantis) DC Comics

You Got Served debuted in theaters.

January 31, 2016Grease: Live starring Julianne Hough, Aaron Tveit, Vanessa Hudgens, and Carlos PenaVega, aired on FOX

Today’s Random Trivia and Shower Thoughts

I always imagined life in the Star Wars universe to be much more awesome, yet I probably still would only be sitting behind a desk of an intergalactic insurance company imagining how awesome life would be in a fictional universe.

The Capital of Romania is Bucharest

Biggest film of 1996: Independence Day (Action/Adventure) earned ~ $307,000,000

If you blow up a balloon too much, it’ll blow up.

What if aliens never invaded earth because they have seen Hollywood movies and think past attempts from other races continually fail.

“Don’t let your dreams be dreams.” – Jack Johnson

TV Quotes… “We are two wild and crazy guys!” (Steve Martin and Dan Aykroyd, as Czech playboys) on “Saturday Night Live”

The phrase “old sport” is said 55 times during The Great Gatsby.

A group of Turtle Doves is called a Pitying or Dule or Piteousness.

The state of Rhode Island’s official name is the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.

Plurals can be used to properly refer to a titleless party in question. – “They then broke the window of the car and took off with my phone. I didn’t see their face.”

Dr. Seuss – Real Name: Theodore Seuss Geisel

Plagiarism is getting in trouble for something you didn’t even do.

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