1967 – “How I Won The War” premieres

It was John Lennon’s debut in an all-acting role – it’s just a pity it wasn’t a better film. “How I Won The War” was a British film focusing on the exploits of a fictional military unit during WOrld War Two. It was intended to be a satirical retelling of the war, a humourous look at how a group of well-meaning incompetents lucked into saving the war.

It was critically panned, and a commercial failure despite the attention that Lennon’s casting brought it. About all that anyone remembers of it today it that it was for this film that Lennon adopted his now trademark circle-rimmed glasses, and that, of course, he mentioned it in a song on Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

Referenced in:

A Day in the Life — The Beatles

1767 – Mason and Dixon complete the surveying of the Line between Maryland and Pennsylvania

Charles Mason, a fellow of the Royal Society and noted astronomer, and his sometime assistant, land surveyor and amateur astronomer, Jeremiah Dixon, were hired by certain wealthy interests in what was then the British colony of America to conclude a number of difficult boundary disputes in the young colonies.

Landing in Philedelphia in 1763, Mason and Dixon spent the next four years painstakingly measuring and fixing the proper boundaries between the various colonies, ceasing their work on October 18, 1867. (A team of their subordinates completed the survey in 1787.)

The lines they laid down, although resurveyed since that time, formed the basic lines of the borders between the colonies (and later the states) of Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. Later, as these states took different sides in the Civil War, the line came to symbolise the political and cultural border between the southern and northern states.

Referenced in:

Sailing To Philadelphia – Mark Knopfler

It is also possible that Dixon’s name is the origin of the south’s nickname of “Dixie”.