Today in History April 3rd and fun facts:


Historical Events:

• 1866: Gen. James Barry Munnik Hertzog, SA premier, is born at Soetendal, Wellington.
• 1905: Dr Emil Cohen (62), discoverer of gold at Lydenburg, dies.
• 1930: Ras Tafari is proclaimed Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia, formerly Abyssinia.
• 1973: The first portable cellular phone call is made in New York City, United States of America (USA). Cellular phones became commercially popular in South Africa in the 1990’s, and today it is estimated that 60% of South African households own a cellular telephone. This is significant in terms of development, as cellular phone technology provides internet access to South Africans in rural areas.
• 1996: Five members of the Afrikaner Resistance Movement (AWB) are sentenced to twenty-six years imprisonment each for their part in a bombing campaign in which twenty people were killed and hundreds injured, aimed at disrupting the 1994 elections.

Arts, Music:

• Dogfish skin was often used in the 18th century to sand violins.
• A single violin is made from over 70 individual pieces of wood.
• The most expensive opera costume of all time was worn by Adelina Patti at Covent Garden in 1895. It was worth €15million.
• The Japanese word ‘Karaoke’ comes from a phrase meaning “Empty Orchestra.”


• 1981: The SA rugby team loses surprisingly against South America with 12-21.
• The first World Series was played between Pittsburgh and Boston in 1903 and was a nine-game series. Boston won the series 5-3.
• About 42,000 tennis balls are used in the plus-minus 650 matches in the Wimbledon Championship.
• Fishing is the biggest participant sport in the world.
• Shaquille O’Neal wears size 22 shoes. He puts on a brand new pair before every game.
• More than 1,800 medals are awarded at the Olympics.

Source: & &
Compiled by: Thandi Xaba