On this date in history … January 21, 1978
In the height of the disco era, The Bee Gees’ album “Saturday Night Fever” climbs to No. 1 in the album charts. The album included such smash hits as “Stayin’ Alive,” “How Deep is Your Love,” and “Night Fever.”
The album held the No. 1 spot for 24 straight weeks and remained on Billboard’s album charts for 120 weeks until March 1980.
In addition to great music, the “Saturday Night Fever” movie launched the career of John Travolta.
ALSO ON THIS DATE IN HISTORY
In 1648, Margaret Brent went before the Maryland colonial assembly to seek two votes in that body, one for herself as a landowner, the other as the legal representative of the absent Lord Baltimore; the assembly turned her down.
In 1793, during the French Revolution, King Louis XVI, condemned for treason, was executed on the guillotine.
In 1861, Jefferson Davis of Mississippi and four other Southerners whose states had seceded from the Union resigned from the U.S. Senate.
In 1908, New York City's Board of Aldermen passed an ordinance prohibiting women from smoking in public (the measure was vetoed two weeks later by Mayor George B. McClellan Jr.).
In 1910, the Great Paris Flood began as the rain-swollen Seine River burst its banks, sending water into the French capital.
In 1924, Russian revolutionary Vladimir Lenin died at age 53.
In 1937, Count Basie and his band recorded "One O'Clock Jump" for Decca Records (on this date in 1942, they re-recorded the song for Okeh Records).
In 1950, former State Department official Alger Hiss, accused of being part of a Communist spy ring, was found guilty in New York of lying to a grand jury. (Hiss, who proclaimed his innocence, served less than four years in prison.) George Orwell (Eric Blair), author of "Nineteen Eighty-Four," died in London at age 46.
In 1968, the Battle of Khe Sanh began during the Vietnam War. An American B-52 bomber carrying four hydrogen bombs crashed in Greenland, killing one crew member and scattering radioactive material.
In 1977, President Jimmy Carter pardoned almost all Vietnam War draft evaders.
In 1982, convict-turned-author Jack Henry Abbott was found guilty in New York of first-degree manslaughter in the stabbing death of waiter Richard Adan in 1981. (Abbott was later sentenced to 15 years to life in prison; he committed suicide in 2002.)
In 1994, a jury in Manassas, Va., found Lorena Bobbitt not guilty by reason of temporary insanity of maliciously wounding her husband John, whom she'd accused of sexually assaulting her.
Ten years ago: President George W. Bush visited community colleges in Ohio and Arizona, where he highlighted the economy and several new job-training initiatives he'd proposed a day earlier in his State of the Union speech. The recording industry sued 532 computer users it said were illegally distributing songs over the Internet.
Five years ago: In a whirlwind first full day in office, President Barack Obama showcased efforts to revive the economy, summoned top military officials to chart a new course in Iraq and eased into the daunting thicket of Middle East diplomacy. The Senate confirmed Hillary Rodham Clinton as secretary of state.
One year ago: A day after being inaugurated for a second term in a private Sunday ceremony, President Barack Obama took a public oath, summoning a divided nation to act with "passion and dedication" to broaden equality and prosperity at home, nurture democracy around the world and combat global warming. British movie director Michael Winner, 77, who'd made 30 films, including three in the "Death Wish" series, died in London.
Today's Birthdays: Actress Ann Wedgeworth is 80. World Golf Hall of Famer Jack Nicklaus is 74. Opera singer Placido Domingo is 73. Singer Mac Davis is 72. Actress Jill Eikenberry is 67. Country musician Jim Ibbotson (The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band) is 67. Singer-songwriter Billy Ocean is 64. U.S. Ambassador to China Gary Locke is 64. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder is 63. Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen is 61. Actor-director Robby Benson is 58. Actress Geena Davis is 58. Basketball Hall of Famer Hakeem Olajuwon is 51. Actress Charlotte Ross is 46. Actor John Ducey is 45. Actress Karina Lombard is 45. Rapper Levirt (B-Rock and the Bizz) is 44. Rock musician Mark Trojanowski (Sister Hazel) is 44. Rock singer-songwriter Cat Power is 42. Rock DJ Chris Kilmore (Incubus) is 41. Actor Vincent Laresca is 40. Singer Emma Bunton (Spice Girls) is 38. Actor Jerry Trainor is 37. Country singer Phil Stacey is 36. Rhythm-and-blues singer Nokio (Dru Hill) is 35. Actress Izabella Miko (MEE'-koh) is 33.