1866 James J. Corbett was born.
1875 Edgar Rice Burroughs was born.
1905 The provinces of Saskatchewan and Alberta entered into the confederation of Canada. (See July 1st entry.)
1939 The Second World War began.
1972 Bobby Fisher won the international chess championship against Boris Spassky in Reykjavik, Iceland. (See March 9th entry.)
Despite the world’s general hope that the First World War was the war to end all wars, the Second World War began twenty years later, on this very day in 1939. It was ignited when Germany invaded Poland and was not extinguished until two atomic bombs were dropped upon Germany’s ally, Japan.
Gentleman Jim Corbett was well-dressed, eloquent, and moved gracefully in polite society. He was the man who beat the legendary John L. Sullivan for the world heavyweight boxing title. He was a superb boxer—not a slugger or brawler. This native San Franciscan was also a new kind of professional fighter who played by the Marquess of Queensberry rules. born on this day in 1866, James J. Corbett became a successful lecturer and actor after his pugilistic career ended. We’ve had a succession of accomplished, articulate fighters since Corbett’s day, but it was Gentleman Jim who broke the old thick-headed mold. He demonstrated that technique and style could be more than a match for brute force.
Edgar Rice Burroughs was born in Chicago on this day in 1875. He had served in the U. S. cavalry, fighting against the Apache Indians out west until he was discharged: it was discovered that he was under age. After pursuing one or two colorful occupations, Burroughs decided to focus his attention on improving the quality of the dime novel. And in 1914, his first novel, Tarzan of the Apes, was published. The success of this and the subsequent novels made Burroughs a millionaire, especially when they were eventually translated into radio broadcasts and feature films.