1707, 296 years ago: birthday of Carl LINNE (died 1778), Swedish naturalist, flora and fauna classifier.
1848, 155 years ago: birthday of Otto LILIENTHAL, German engineer, aviation pioneer. Performed more than 2,000 flights on board of self-designed gliders. Gave an explanation of bird flight. Died in a glider crash in 1896.
1883, 120 years ago: birthday of Douglas FAIRBANKS (Douglas Elton Thomas Ullman, died in 1939), American actor, producer, co-founder of United Artists. Starred in "The Americano," "The Thief of Baghdad," "The Iron Mask." * 1906, 97 years ago: death of Henrik IBSEN (born 1828), Norwegian playwright, author of "Peer Gynt," "Pillars of Society," "A Doll's House," "Hedda Gabler," "Ghosts," "The Master Builder." * 1908, 95 years ago: birthday of John BARDEEN (died in 1991), American physicist, designer of the first transistor radio, co-author of the microscopic theory of superconductivity, the only winner of two Nobel prizes in physics (1956, 1972).
1934, 69 years ago: Louisiana police shoots down Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow, the legendary bank robbers whose life story was made into a movie ("Bonnie and Clyde").
1937, 66 years ago: death of John Davidson Rockefeller (born in 1839), American financial magnate, founder of Standard Oil.
What happened in Russia on May 23 ...years ago:
1885, 118 years ago: birthday of Nikolai ZUBOV (died 1960), oceanologist, polar researcher, participant in the Battle of Tsushima (an episode from the Russian-Japanese War of 1905), leader of oceanologic expeditions, founder and head of chairs of oceanology in scientific establishments. Had a gulf in Antarctica and two research ships (the Nikolai Zubov and the Professor Zubov) named after him.
1921, 82 years ago: birthday of Grigory CHUKHRAI (died 2001), movie director, People's Artist of the USSR. Directed "The Ballad of a Soldier," "Clear Skies," "41," "The Bog." * 1934, 69 years ago: the first experimental flight of a cruise missile with a liquid-propellant engine designed by Sergei Korolyov.
1989, 14 years ago: death of Georgy TOVSTONOGOV (born 1915), head producer with the Bolshoi Gorky Theater of Drama (renamed the Tovstonogov Theater in 1992).
The Orthodox Church celebrates the Day of St. Simon the Apostle, also known as Simon the Zealot, son of Joseph the Betrothed. It was at the celebration of his wedding that Jesus Christ worked his first miracle and turned water into wine. Amazed at this marvel, Simon became an ardent believer and a disciple of Christ's. Preached the Word in Judea, Egypt, Libya, and Britain. Was martyred in Abkhazia and buried in Nikopsia, a town not far from Sukhumi.