Elizabeth Montgomery is remembered best for playing Samantha Stephens in the classic sitcom “Bewitched” from 1964 to 1972. Playing a suburban housewife who happened to be a witch, Montgomery charmed viewers with every twitch of her nose. The daughter of actor Robert Montgomery, she got her start on her dad’s series “Robert Montgomery Presents, but she proved her own talent in her sitcoms and in Emmy-nominated roles including Lizzie Borden in The Legend of Lizzie Borden. Montgomery also was an activist against the Vietnam War, and she advocated for women’s and gay rights. We remember Montgomery’s life today as well as the lives of other notable people who were born this day in history.
1955: Dodi Fayed, Egyptian film producer who was in a relationship with Diana, Princess of Wales, at the time of their deaths, is born in Alexandria, Egypt.
1955: Jeff Golub, U.S. guitarist who played with Rod Stewart and Billy Squier who was also a contemporary jazz guitarist, is born in Akron, Ohio.
1952: Glenn Shadix, U.S. actor known best for roles in “Beetlejuice” and “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” is born in Bessemer, Alabama.
Green said the prolific actor had one of his closest professional relationships with director Tim Burton, who cast him in films like “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” “Planet of the Apes,” and “Beetlejuice,” the 1988 horror comedy for which he is perhaps most widely remembered. In the film, Shadix starred opposite Winona Ryder and Michael Keaton as Otho, an uppity interior designer who tries his hand at the occult to summon ghosts from the afterlife. Read more
1942: Kenneth Lay, U.S. businessman who was CEO of Enron Inc. and contributed to the corruption scandal that brought the company down, is born in Tyrone, Missouri.
1937: Robert Gore, inventor of Gore-Tex, is born in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Beginning in 1964, “Bewitched” was a huge success, and it ran for eight seasons (for most of which Montgomery played two characters – Samantha Stephens and her mischievous cousin Serena). The show was renewed for a ninth season on the strength of high ratings – indeed, ABC’s highest ratings to date – but Montgomery backed out, wanting to pursue other projects. Read more
1933: Roy Clark, country music legend known as the longtime host of “Hee-Haw,” is born in Meherrin, Virginia.
1922: Harold Washington, U.S. politician who was the first African-American mayor of Chicago, is born in Chicago, Illinois.
1908: Lita Grey, U.S. actress who appeared in silent films and was the second wife of Charlie Chaplin, is born in Los Angeles, California.
1903: John Williams, English actor known for roles in “Dial M for Murder,” “Sabrina” and “Family Affair,” is born in Buckinghamshire, England.
1894: Bessie Smith, U.S. blues singer considered among the greatest of her era, is born in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
1841: Joseph E. Seagram, Canadian businessman who founded Seagram Distilleries, is born in Fisher’s Mills, Canada West.
1452: Leonardo da Vinci, Italian artist and scientist who painted the Mona Lisa and “The Last Supper,” is born in Vinci, Republic of Florence.