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October 6, 1927: The Jazz Singer brings voices to screen

The following events occurred in October 1927:


October 1, 1927 (Saturday)Edit

October 2, 1927 (Sunday)Edit

October 3, 1927 (Monday)Edit

  • After General Francisco Serrano announced that he would run against former Mexican President Álvaro Obregón in the 1928 election, President Plutarco Elías Calles ordered Serrano's elimination. General Serrano and 12 of his men were intercepted on the road between Cuernavaca and Mexico City and arrested. After General Claudio Fox arrived, the 13 detainees were executed, on the spot, by the Mexican Army. Obregon's other rival, General Arnulfo Gomez, would be executed the next month. With no competitors, Obregon won the election, only to be assassinated two weeks afterward.[5]

October 4, 1927 (Tuesday)Edit

October 5, 1927 (Wednesday)Edit

October 6, 1927 (Thursday)Edit

  • At 8:45 pm, The Jazz Singer, starring Al Jolson, was presented for the first time. The Warner Brothers film was shown at the Warner Theater in New York, which had been specially wired for sound with the Vitaphone system. It was the first "talkie", with sound synchronized to the film, although much of it was silent, with title cards, and in cities without the sound system, was seen as another silent movie. The first words heard by the audience were Jolson, as Jakie Rabinowitz, shouting to an orchestra, ""Wait a minute! Wait a minute! I tell ya, you ain't heard nothin' yet!" In keeping with the film's theme of a conflict within a Jewish family, the film premiered after sunset on the eve of the Yom Kippur holiday.[10]
  • Born: Antony Grey, English gay rights activist, in Wilmslow (d. 2010)
  • Died: Amy Catherine Robbins Wells, 55, wife of science fiction author H. G. Wells. The character of Amy Robbins was portrayed by Mary Steenburgen in the 1979 science fiction film Time After Time, the premise being that Robbins was a 1979 bank employee who married Wells after traveling back to 1895.

October 7, 1927 (Friday)Edit

  • Tommy Loughran, nicknamed The Philadelphia Phantom, became the light heavyweight boxing champion of the world, outpointing Mike McTigue in 15 rounds. Loughran retired in 1929 in order to pursue, unsuccessfully, the heavyweight title.[11]
  • The sudden collapse of the Kimberly-Clark factory in Appleton, Wisconsin, killed 9 people and injured 18 others.[12]
  • Born:
  • Died: John Shillington "Jack" Prince, 68, British cricketer and bicyclist. He also built tracks for bicycle, motorcycle and sprint car racing.

October 8, 1927 (Saturday)Edit

  • The Second 100 Years, the first film in which Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy received top billing, was released.[13]
  • Murderer's Row: The New York Yankees completed a 4-game sweep of the Pittsburgh Pirates in the World Series, with a 4-3 win.[14]
  • In what has been described as "the first ever tactic of using downed aircrew as bait to ambush rescue forces",[15] Sandinista guerrillas shot down U.S. Army Air Corps biplane over Nicaragua near Jicaro then ambushed the would-be rescuers, killing four members of the Nicaraguan Guardia Nacional and wounding some of the U.S. Army forces. The two American crewmen, 2d.Lt. Earl Thomas and Sgt. Frank Dowdell, survived the crash but were later executed.
  • Born: César Milstein, Argentine scientist, and winner of 1984 Nobel Prize for Medicine; in Bahía Blanca (d. 2002)

October 9, 1927 (Sunday)Edit

  • The fire department in Spokane, Washington blamed a house fire on sunlight and a goldfish bowl, reporting that the glass bowl "acted as a lens, focusing the sun's rays to a single point of impact" to set aflame a curtain at the home of Mrs. E. C. Barrett.[16]
  • The Mexican Army battled anti-government rebels as the two forces met at Vera Cruz at 3:00 in the afternoon. The fighting lasted until 8:00 pm the next evening, and the insurrection against the Calles government was suppressed.[17]

October 10, 1927 (Monday)Edit

October 11, 1927 (Tuesday)Edit

  • Pilot Ruth Elder took off from New York in the airplane American Girl, with her co-pilot, George Haldeman, in an attempt to become the first woman to duplicate Charles Lindbergh's transatlantic crossing to Paris. Mechanical problems caused them to ditch the plane 360 miles from land, but they established a new over-water endurance flight record of 2,623 miles.[23]
  • Mona McLellan, real name Dr. Dorothy Cochrane Logan, arrived at Folkestone after reportedly breaking Gertrude Ederle's record for swimming the English Channel, with a new time of 13 hours and 10 minutes. For the feat, she won a $5,000 prize from the British newspaper News of the World. Days later, she revealed that her Channel swim had been a hoax, designed to demonstrate the lack of monitoring or verification of record-breaking attempts.[24]
  • Born: William J. Perry, U.S. Secretary of Defense 1994-1997, in Vandergrift, Pennsylvania

October 12, 1927 (Wednesday)Edit

  • Wright Field, located near Dayton, Ohio, was dedicated for use by the United States Army Air Corps. The land was created from Wilbur Wright Field and an additional acreage, and renamed in Wilbur's honor and that of Orville Wright. The field is now part of the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.
  • Florence Mills, the African-American actress who had become an international superstar while on tour in Europe, made a triumphant return to New York City. She would die of a ruptured appendix almost three weeks later, after postponing surgery "to attend to the demands of celebrity" [25]
  • Died: Alonzo M. Griffen, 80, American preacher, died while making an impassioned speech to the National Spiritualist Association of Churches convention in San Antonio

October 13, 1927 (Thursday)Edit

October 14, 1927 (Friday)Edit

  • Dieudonne Costas and Joseph Le Brix became the first persons to fly an airplane across the South Atlantic Ocean, and the first to make an east-to-west transatlantic crossing, departing Saint-Louis, Senegal and arriving in Port Natal, Brazil 21 hours and 15 minutes later, at 11:40 pm local time.[27]
  • Born: Roger Moore, English actor, in Stockwell, London (d. 2017)

October 15, 1927 (Saturday)Edit

  • Oil was discovered in Iraq at 3:00 am the Baba Gurgur fields 50 miles south of Kirkuk, with a gusher that erupted after drilling had reached a depth of 1,500 feet. The strike created the first major oil field in the Middle East.[28]
  • Mustafa Kemal, later given the honorific Atatürk (Father of the Turks) began the speech called the Nutuk, for six hours a day over six days, "the primary source for the official Turkish version of the history of the resistance movement" [29]
  • Germany's highest court, the Staatsgerichtshof, declared itself to be the "Guardian of the Constitution" of the Weimar republic[30]
  • In a drive-by shooting on Manhattan's Norfolk Street, Louis "Lepke" Buchalter assassinated "Little Augie" Orgenstein, industrial racketeer, and wounded "Legs" Diamond. Lepke and Gurrah Shapiro[31]
  • The heart of General Tadeusz Kościuszko (1746–1817), a hero of the American Revolution, was returned to Warsaw in a bronze urn, after having been stored for 90 years in a museum at Rapperswil in Switzerland.[32]

October 16, 1927 (Sunday)Edit

  • The first remnant of Peking Man, a tooth, was found by paleontologist Anders Birger Bohlin at Chou K'ou Tien (Zhoukoudian), under sponsorship of Davidson Black, who gave it the scientific name Sinanthropus pekinensis. More remains would be discovered over the next ten years, and reclassified as Homo erectus pekinensis, estimated to be more than 300,000 years old. The specimens would disappear in 1941.[33]
  • Born:
  • Died: Chester A. Thorne, fictitious Tacoma millionaire whose ghost is said to haunt Thornewood, used in the filming of the Stephen King film Rose Red

October 17, 1927 (Monday)Edit

  • Ban Johnson, who had founded the American League in 1901, was forced to step down from the post of president of the AL.[34]
  • A revision of the constitution of the semi-independent Republic of Lebanon reduced the size of the legislature and gave President Charles Debbas the power to appoint one-third of its members. Lebanon remained a protectorate of France, through a High Commissioner.[35]
  • Teapot Dome scandal: The criminal trial of former Interior Secretary Albert B. Fall and former Mammoth Oil chief Harry F. Sinclair began.[36]
  • Born: Friedrich Hirzebruch, German mathematician specializing in algebraic geometry, and co-discoverer of the Hirzebruch-Riemann-Roch theorem, at Hamm

October 18, 1927 (Tuesday)Edit

October 19, 1927 (Wednesday)Edit

  • The case of Buck v. Bell was decided. Carrie Buck, who had fought all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court to have forced sterilization declared unconstitutional- and lost- was sterilized by Dr. Bell. She was one of 50,000 American women sterilized in accordance with state laws, and the case was cited by Nazi lawyers in the sterilization of 2,000,000 women.[38]
  • What would become the border between Singapore and Malaysia was worked out by agreement of the United Kingdom and the Sultan of the State of Johor.[39]
  • Born: Pierre Alechinsky, Belgian painter, in Brussels

October 20, 1927 (Thursday)Edit

  • The Stamps Quartet, consisting of Odis Echols, Roy Wheeler, Palmer Wheeler, Dwight Brock, first recorded the gospel music bestseller "Give the World a Smile". The upbeat song inspired its own genre of gospel music.[40]

October 21, 1927 (Friday)Edit

  • Groundbreaking was held for the George Washington Bridge on both shores of the Hudson River, and one in the river itself. The bridge would open eight months ahead of schedule, in October 1931.[41]

October 22, 1927 (Saturday)Edit

  • Abie's Irish Rose closed after a run of 2,327 performances, after having opened on May 23, 1922. At the time, it was the longest running play in Broadway history, and was later passed by Life with Father in 1941.[42]
  • Died:

October 23, 1927 (Sunday)Edit

October 24, 1927 (Monday)Edit

October 25, 1927 (Tuesday)Edit

October 26, 1927 (Wednesday)Edit

October 27, 1927 (Thursday)Edit

October 28, 1927 (Friday)Edit

  • Pan American Airways made the first regularly scheduled international flight by an American airline (and Pan Am's very first flight), with pilot Hugh Wells taking off from Key West, Florida, to Havana, Cuba, in a tri-motor Fokker F-VIII. Passenger service did not begin until January 16, 1928.[47] Pan Am's very last flight would also be international and from a Caribbean island to Florida, as Captain Mark Pyle brought Pan Am Flight 436 from Bridgetown, Barbados to a landing in Miami on December 4, 1991.
  • Fox Movietone News presented the first synchronized-sound newsreel, at the Roxy Theater in New York.[48]
  • Born: Roza Makagonova, Soviet actress, in Samara, RSFSR (d. 1995)
  • 45 fishermen from Inishkea, Lacken, Inishbofin and Cleggan were drowned off the west of Ireland when as a result of an unexpected storm.

October 29, 1927 (Saturday)Edit

October 30, 1927 (Sunday)Edit

  • Admiral Paul Kondouriotis, the President of Greece, survived an assassination attempt by a 25-year-old waiter. Zafioios Goussies shot President Kondouriotis in the head as the President was leaving a conference of Greece's mayors in Athens.[50]

October 31, 1927 (Monday)Edit

  • The drifting ship Ryo Yei Maru was spotted off of Cape Flattery, Washington State. When the American freighter Margaret Dollar arrived, the rescuers found the emaciated bodies of all twelve of the Japanese ship's crew. The ship's engine had failed on December 23, 1926, during a gale, and the men on board slowly died of starvation, with the last one succumbing on May 11. Having drifted 5,000 miles, the ship was towed into Seattle. After a Buddhist funeral ceremony for the 12 men, their bodies were cremated and the vessel was burned.[51]
  • Born: Lee Grant, American actress, in New York City


  1. ^ Michele Hilmes, Hollywood and Broadcasting: From Radio to Cable (University of Illinois Press, 1999) p37
  2. ^ Waldo, Ronald T. (2013). Pennant Hopes Dashed by the Homer in the Gloamin': The Story of How the 1938 Pittsburgh Pirates Blew the National League Pennant. Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Company, Inc. p. 8. ISBN 9780786472024.
  3. ^ Robert Moats Miller, Harry Emerson Fosdick: Preacher, Pastor, Prophet (Oxford University Press US, 1985) p385
  4. ^ Deborah Todd and Joseph A. Angelo, A to Z of Scientists in Space and Astronomy (Infobase Publishing, 2005) p29
  5. ^ Jurgen Buchenau, The Last Caudillo: Alvaro Obregon and the Mexican Revolution (John Wiley and Sons, 2011); "MEXICO CRUSHES MUTINY!- Gen. Serrano, Revolt Chief, with 13 Aids, Put to Death", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 5, 1927, p1
  6. ^ Patrick Straub, It Happened in South Dakota: Remarkable Events That Shaped History (Globe Pequot, 2010) pp66-67
  7. ^ Edmund Jan Osmańczyk and Anthony Mango, Encyclopedia of the United Nations and International Agreements: G to M (Taylor & Francis, 2003) p1134
  8. ^ "Liverpool Picks 1st Woman Lord Mayor", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 5, 1927, p1
  9. ^ Eric Nuzum, The Dead Travel Fast: Stalking Vampires from Nosferatu to Count Chocula (Macmillan, 2008) p205
  10. ^ William Guynn, The Routledge Companion to Film History (Taylor & Francis, 2010) p68; "The Screen: Al Jolson and the Vitaphone" NYT 10.7.27 p24
  11. ^ Nat Fleischer and Sam Andre, An Illustrated History of Boxing (Citadel Press, 2002) pp195-196
  12. ^ "9 DEAD IN MILL CRASH; DIG IN RUINS FOR BODIES", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 8, 1927, p1
  13. ^ Wes D. Gehring, Laurel & Hardy: A Bio-bibliography (Greenwood Publishing Group, 1990) p263
  14. ^ Leo Trachtenberg, The Wonder Team: The True Story of the Incomparable 1927 New York Yankees (Popular Press, 1995) pp122-123: "NEW YORK BEATS PIRATES 4 TO 3", Spokane Daily Chronicle, October 8, 1927, pII-2
  15. ^ George Galdorisi and Thomas Phillips, Leave No Man Behind: The Saga of Combat Search and Rescue (Zenith Imprint, 2009) pp24-25
  16. ^ "Gold Fish Bowl And Sun Join in Starting Blaze", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 10, 1927, p1
  17. ^ "ROUT REBELS AT VERA CRUZ!", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 11, 1927, p1
  18. ^ James H. Rial, Revolution from Above: The Primo de Rivera Dictatorship in Spain, 1923-1930 (Associated University Presse, 1986) p114
  19. ^ Cary D. Wintz and Paul Finkelman, Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance Volume 2 (Taylor & Francis, 2004) p986
  20. ^ Mark Tucker, Ellington: The Early Years (University of Illinois Press, 1995) p207
  21. ^ Sharon Chien Lin, Libraries and Librarianship in China (Greenwood Publishing Group, 1998) p60
  22. ^ Nancy Marlow-Trump, Ruby Keeler: A Photographic Biography (McFarland, 2005) p33
  23. ^ Lynn M. Homan, et al., Women Who Fly (Pelican Publishing, 2004) p46-47; "RUTH ELDER HOPS OFF!", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 11, 1927, p1
  24. ^ "London Woman Breaks Ederle Channel Mark", Miami News, October 11, 1927, p1; "Channel Swim Hoax Admitted by Prize Winner", Miami News, October 16, 1927, p1
  25. ^ Janus Adams, Sister Days: 365 Inspired Moments in African-American Women's History (John Wiley and Sons, 2000) p12
  26. ^ Ted Schwarz, Shocking Stories of the Cleveland Mob (The History Press, 2010) pp26-28
  27. ^ James P. Harrison, Mastering the Sky: A History of Aviation from Ancient Times to the Present (Da Capo Press, 2000) p100; Richard Bak, The Big Jump: Lindbergh and the Great Atlantic Air Race (John Wiley and Sons, 2011) pp252-253 "FRENCH FLYERS CONQUER ATLANTIC", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 15, 1927, p.1
  28. ^ Daniel Yergin, The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money, & Power (Simon and Schuster, 1991)
  29. ^ Gareth Jenkins, Political Islam in Turkey: Running West, Heading East? (Macmillan, 2008) p98
  30. ^ Ellen Kennedy, Constitutional Failure: Carl Schmitt in Weimar (Duke University Press, 2004) p151
  31. ^ Howard Abadinsky, Organized Crime (Cengage Learning, 2009) p77
  32. ^ "Heart of Hero Kosciusko Sent Back to Poland", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 16, 1927, p1
  33. ^ Penny Van Oosterzee, Dragon Bones: The Story of Peking Man (Basic Books, 2000) pp98-100
  34. ^ Robert Wiggins, The Federal League of Base Ball Clubs: The History of an Outlaw Major League, 1914-1915 (McFarland, 2008) p304
  35. ^ Martin Sicker, The Middle East in the Twentieth Century (Greenwood Publishing Group, 2001) p74
  36. ^ Robert Grant and Joseph Katz, The Great Trials of the Twenties: The Watershed Decade in America's Courtrooms (Da Capo Press, 1998) p218
  37. ^ a b "French Jurors Free Avenger of Pogrom Dead". Chicago Daily Tribune. October 27, 1927. p. 19.
  38. ^ Harry Bruinius, Better for All the World: The Secret History of Forced Sterilization and America's Quest for Racial Purity (Random House Digital, Inc., 2006) p1
  39. ^ Lin Sien Chia, Southeast Asia Transformed: A Geography of Change (Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, 2003) p77
  40. ^ W. K. McNeil, Encyclopedia of American Gospel Music (Taylor and Francis, 2005) p370
  41. ^ Sharon Reier, The Bridges of New York (Courier Dover Publications, 2000) pp99-100
  42. ^ Gabrielle H. Cody and Evert Sprinchorn, The Columbia Encyclopedia of Modern Drama, Volume 1 (Columbia University Press, 2007) p4
  43. ^ R. J. Overy, The Dictators: Hitler's Germany and Stalin's Russia (W. W. Norton & Company, 2004) p27
  44. ^ Stuart R. Schram and Nancy Jane Hodes, Mao's Road to Power: From the Jinggangshan to the establishment of the Jiangxi Soviets, July 1927-December 1930 (M.E. Sharpe, 1992) p283
  45. ^ "Henry Ford Sees First New Type Car Produced; Low, With Graceful Lines, and Fifty-Mile Speed", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 24, 1927, p1
  46. ^ "LINER SINKS; 880 MISSING", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 26, 1927, p1; "Radio Snaps Tense Story of Last Moments on Liner", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 27, 1927, p2; "LINER DEATHS SET AT 300", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 28, 1927, p1; "293 Is Liner Toll; Rescue Ships in Port", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 29, 1927, p3
  47. ^ "Early Airlines- Pan American Airways", Flying Magazine (March 1964) p53
  48. ^ John C. Tibbetts, The American theatrical film: stages in development (Popular Press, 1985) p208
  49. ^ Evgeny Dobrenko, The Making of the State Reader: Social and Aesthetic Contexts of the Reception of Soviet Literature (Stanford University Press, 1997) p194
  50. ^ "President of Greece Shot"Milwaukee Sentinel, October 31, 1927, p1
  51. ^ Bill Gulick, A Traveler's History of Washington (Caxton Press, 1996) pp149-152; "Ship's Log Tells a Grim Story of Starvation Death", Ellensburg (OR) Daily Record, November 2, 1927, p1