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Published: 8 months ago
Author J.D. Salinger spent many more years not publishing books than he spent publishing books … but during the few short years when he published, he became a literary legend and created an icon of teen angst. His "The Catcher in the Rye," featuring alienated teen Holden Caulfield, is still read today – even by teens who weren't assigned it in schools. His other novels and short stories remain classics as well. Yet from 1963 until his death in 2010, he published no books – though he reportedly wrote many – and remained a recluse. Fans and critics continue to speculate, and probably will for many years to come, on just what undiscovered literary treasures he left behind. We remember Salinger's life today as well as the lives of other notable people who were born this day in history.
1949: Olivia Goldsmith, U.S. author known best for her 1992 novel "The First Wives Club," is born in Dumont, New Jersey.
1937: Matt Robinson, U.S. actor known best as the first to portray Gordon on "Sesame Street," is born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
1927: Doak Walker, U.S. NFL player who was a running back with the Detroit Lions and became a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, is born in Dallas, Texas.
1919: J.D. Salinger, U.S. author whose "The Catcher in the Rye" is a classic of 20th-century fiction, is born in New York, New York.
Upon his death, it was speculated that soon we would all see just what Salinger had been up to during the last 45 years. Posthumous releases are de rigueur for highly regarded literary authors – the estate of David Foster Wallace, who died in 2008, later oversaw the release of "The Pale King," a novel he was working on at the time of his death. Three posthumous short story collections by Kurt Vonnegut have hit the shelves since his death. And then there are those authors we never knew much about before their deaths – figures such as Franz Kafka, John Kennedy O'Toole, Roberto Bolano, and the mega-selling Stieg Larsson, just to name a few. Read more
1919: Carole Landis, U.S. actress in movies including "One Million B.C." and "Moon Over Miami," is born in Fairchild, Wisconsin.
1919: Rocky Graziano, U.S. boxer considered one of the greatest knockout artists of all time, is born in Brooklyn, New York.
1911: Hank Greenberg, U.S. Major League Baseball player who was a first baseman with the Detroit Tigers and was one of the sport's greatest sluggers, is born in New York, New York.
1909: Dana Andrews, U.S. actor whose notable roles include war veteran Fred Derry in "The Best Years of Our Lives," is born in Covington County, Mississippi.
1895: J. Edgar Hoover, U.S. lawman who became the first director of the FBI, is born in Washington, D.C.
1879: William Fox, Hungarian-American film executive who founded the Fox Film Corp., is born in Tolcsva, Hungary.
1879: E.M. Forster, British author known for novels including "A Room With a View," "Howards End," and "A Passage to India," is born in Marylebone, England.
1864: Alfred Stieglitz, U.S. photographer who helped drive the acceptance of photography as an art form, and the husband of painter Georgia O'Keeffe, is born in Hoboken, New Jersey.
1752: Betsy Ross, U.S. seamstress purported to have made the first U.S. flag, is born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
1734: Paul Revere, U.S. silversmith and engraver known best for his historic ride to alert the Colonial army to the approach of British forces, is born in Boston, Massachusetts.