This Weekend In History!

Incandescent Light

October 21, 1879

Thomas Edison succeeds in making his electric light. It had taken about 1,200 experiments and cost more than $40,000 (about $850,000 in today’s money). It operated for 13 hours. Although incandescent lights had been around for about 40 years, Edison’s was the first practical one.

Houdini Fatally Punched in Stomach

October 22, 1926

The famous magician Harry Houdini is struck four times by a college student challenging his ability to withstand blows to the stomach. Houdini, who was unprepared for the attack and had acute appendicitis, died nine days later. Houdini was famous for his ability to take blows to the stomach. While Houdini was reclining on a coach having his portrait sketched, a college student asked, “if he believed in the miracles of the Bible” and “whether it was true that punches in the stomach did not hurt him?” Before Houdini could prepare, the student then began punching Houdini in the abdomen. It is believed that these blows aggravated an existing case of appendicitis that Houdini was unaware of. Houdini remained in pain and on October 24th he developed a 104 °F (40 °C) fever. However, he refused medical help and performed his act that night. Afterwards he was hospitalized and died on October 31st.

Longest NFL Punt Return – 103 Yards

October 23, 1994

Robert Bailey of the Los Angeles Rams in a game against the New Orleans Saints. The Saints punted the ball and it looked like it would bounce out the end zone, however, it didn’t. Apparently, everyone except Bailey thought the ball was dead. He scooped it up as players were walking off the field and returned it for a touchdown before anyone realized what had happened. The Saints prevailed and won 37-34.