ContractsProf Blog

Editor: Myanna Dellinger
University of South Dakota School of Law

Friday, August 5, 2005

Today in History: August 5

1583: The first English colony in the New World is established, when Sir Humphrey Gilbert claims what is now St. Johns, Newfoundland, for the English, assuming control of fishermen who have been working the area for more than 80 years.

1641: Future Massachusetts Justice John Hathorne, who will help preside over the Salem Witch Trials, is born at Salem, Massachusetts.

1861: The income tax is born with the Revenue Act of 1861. The rate is 3 percent on all income above $800 -- the wage equivalent of $118,000 today.

1882: The Standard Oil Co. of New Jersey is formed, taking advantage of New Jersey laws that, contrary to practices in other states, allow one corporation to own stock in another.

1914: The American Traffic Signal Co. installs the first electric traffic signal system at Cleveland, Ohio. Originally the lights are red and green; yellow is added six years later.

1908: Harold Edward Holt (Melbourne Law 1930), Australia’s 17th Prime Minister, is born at Sydney, New South Wales.

1962: The body of actress Marilyn Monroe is found at her Brentwood home. She made only about $1,000 for her first major film, The Asphalt Jungle, but for The Seven Year Itch she earned $250,000 and ten percent of the gross over $4 million.

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