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In the Good Old Days Antiques Corner This Week in History
This Week in History

The Development of Television, An Interlocking Toy, and Two Legends' Last Film

-- On Jan. 26, 1926: John Logie Baird gave a demonstration in his laboratory of the transmission of an image of a face in motion via radio, which many consider the first demonstration of the television. The development of the early television was possible in part due to the advances in circuits and the transmission of images by many engineers. In 1925, Baird showed moving images during a demonstration at Selfridges department store in London. He continued to work on improving his invention, leading to his 1926 demonstration. At the time Baird was working on his invention, other inventors including Philo Farnsworth and Charles Francis Jenkins were also busy working on the invention of early televisions, making it very difficult to declare who actually invented the television.

-- On Jan. 28, 1958: The LEGO interlocking brick design was patented in the United States. The LEGO company was started by Ole Kirk Christiansen, a carpenter from Denmark, who made and sold toys. In the late 1940s, LEGO started producing some of its toys made from plastic. Christiansen's son Godtfred helped with the idea of a versatile toy system. In 1958, the recognizable modern interlocking brick design was ultimately developed and patented. The interlocking bricks were a wonderful invention that allowed children to be more creative when playing with the blocks. LEGO was inducted in the National Toy Hall of Fame in 1998. Stores, theme parks, video games and even movies have all been created based on the LEGO block design.

-- On Feb. 1, 1961: The film The Misfits, starring Clark Gable, Marilyn Monroe and Montgomery Clift was released. The film was notable as it was the last film completed by the two Hollywood legends Gable and Monroe. Gable died 12 days after filming was completed, on Nov. 16, 1960, at the age of 59. Gable would have turned 60 on Feb. 1, 1961, the same day the film was released. The Misfits was also the last film that Monroe completed before her death, although she had begun work on the film Something's Got to Give, which then had to be abandoned. Monroe was just 36 when she died on Aug. 5, 1962. Even though The Misfits featured some big-name stars, it did not do well during its box office release. The film made a little over $4 million, which was just slightly more than it had cost to make.

-- Compiled by M. Moeller

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