Paramount Pictures Corporation is an American film studio based in Hollywood, a subsidiary of the American media conglomerate Viacom since 1994. Paramount is the fifth oldest surviving film studio in the world, the second oldest in the United States, the sole member of the "Big Five" film studios still located in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Hollywood. In 1916, film producer Adolph Zukor put 22 actors and actresses under contract and honored each with a star on the logo. In 2014, Paramount Pictures became the first major Hollywood studio to distribute all of its films in digital form only; the company's headquarters and studios are located at 5555 Melrose Avenue, California, United States. Paramount Pictures is a member of the Motion Picture Association of America. Paramount is the fifth oldest surviving film studio in the world after the French studios Gaumont Film Company and Pathé, followed by the Nordisk Film company, Universal Studios, it is the last major film studio still headquartered in the Hollywood district of Los Angeles.
Paramount Pictures dates its existence from the 1912 founding date of the Famous Players Film Company. Hungarian-born founder Adolph Zukor, an early investor in nickelodeons, saw that movies appealed to working-class immigrants. With partners Daniel Frohman and Charles Frohman he planned to offer feature-length films that would appeal to the middle class by featuring the leading theatrical players of the time. By mid-1913, Famous Players had completed five films, Zukor was on his way to success, its first film was Les Amours de la reine Élisabeth. That same year, another aspiring producer, Jesse L. Lasky, opened his Lasky Feature Play Company with money borrowed from his brother-in-law, Samuel Goldfish known as Samuel Goldwyn; the Lasky company hired as their first employee a stage director with no film experience, Cecil B. DeMille, who would find a suitable site in Hollywood, near Los Angeles, for his first feature film, The Squaw Man. Starting in 1914, both Lasky and Famous Players released their films through a start-up company, Paramount Pictures Corporation, organized early that year by a Utah theatre owner, W. W. Hodkinson, who had bought and merged several smaller firms.
Hodkinson and actor, producer Hobart Bosworth had started production of a series of Jack London movies. Paramount was the first successful nationwide distributor. Famous Players and Lasky were owned while Paramount was a corporation. In 1916, Zukor maneuvered a three-way merger of his Famous Players, the Lasky Company, Paramount. Zukor and Lasky bought Hodkinson out of Paramount, merged the three companies into one; the new company Lasky and Zukor founded, Famous Players-Lasky Corporation, grew with Lasky and his partners Goldwyn and DeMille running the production side, Hiram Abrams in charge of distribution, Zukor making great plans. With only the exhibitor-owned First National as a rival, Famous Players-Lasky and its "Paramount Pictures" soon dominated the business; because Zukor believed in stars, he signed and developed many of the leading early stars, including Mary Pickford, Marguerite Clark, Pauline Frederick, Douglas Fairbanks, Gloria Swanson, Rudolph Valentino, Wallace Reid. With so many important players, Paramount was able to introduce "block booking", which meant that an exhibitor who wanted a particular star's films had to buy a year's worth of other Paramount productions.
It was this system that gave Paramount a leading position in the 1920s and 1930s, but which led the government to pursue it on antitrust grounds for more than twenty years. The driving force behind Paramount's rise was Zukor. Through the teens and twenties, he built the Publix Theatres Corporation, a chain of nearly 2,000 screens, ran two production studios, became an early investor in radio, taking a 50% interest in the new Columbia Broadcasting System in 1928. In 1926, Zukor hired independent producer B. P. Schulberg, an unerring eye for new talent, to run the new West Coast operations, they purchased the Robert Brunton Studios, a 26-acre facility at 5451 Marathon Street for US$1 million. In 1927, Famous Players-Lasky took the name Paramount Famous Lasky Corporation. Three years because of the importance of the Publix Theatres, it became Paramount Publix Corporation. In 1928, Paramount began releasing Inkwell Imps, animated cartoons produced by Max and Dave Fleischer's Fleischer Studios in New York City.
The Fleischers, veterans in the animation industry, were among the few animation producers capable of challenging the prominence of Walt Disney. The Paramount newsreel series Paramount News ran from 1927 to 1957. Paramount was one of the first Hollywood studios to release what were known at that time as "talkies", in 1929, released their first musical, Innocents of Paris. Richard A. Whiting and Leo Robin composed the score for the film. By acquiring the successful Balaban & Katz chain in 1926, Zukor gained the services of Barney Balaban, his brother A. J. Balaban, their partner Sam Katz (who would run the Paramount-Publix theatre chain in New York City from the thirty-five-stor
A bomb is an explosive weapon that uses the exothermic reaction of an explosive material to provide an sudden and violent release of energy. Detonations inflict damage principally through ground- and atmosphere-transmitted mechanical stress, the impact and penetration of pressure-driven projectiles, pressure damage, explosion-generated effects. Bombs have been utilized since the 11th century starting in East Asia; the term bomb is not applied to explosive devices used for civilian purposes such as construction or mining, although the people using the devices may sometimes refer to them as a "bomb". The military use of the term "bomb", or more aerial bomb action refers to airdropped, unpowered explosive weapons most used by air forces and naval aviation. Other military explosive weapons not classified as "bombs" include shells, depth charges, or land mines. In unconventional warfare, other names can refer to a range of offensive weaponry. For instance, in recent Middle Eastern conflicts, homemade bombs called "improvised explosive devices" have been employed by insurgent fighters to great effectiveness.
The word comes from the Latin bombus, which in turn comes from the Greek βόμβος, an onomatopoetic term meaning "booming", "buzzing". Explosive bombs were used by a Jurchen Jin army against a Chinese Song city. Bombs built using bamboo tubes appear in the 11th century. Bombs made of cast iron shells packed with explosive gunpowder date to 13th century China; the term was coined for this bomb during a Jin dynasty naval battle of 1231 against the Mongols. The History of Jin 《金史》 states that in 1232, as the Mongol general Subutai descended on the Jin stronghold of Kaifeng, the defenders had a "thunder-crash bomb" which "consisted of gunpowder put into an iron container... when the fuse was lit there was a great explosion the noise whereof was like thunder, audible for more than thirty miles, the vegetation was scorched and blasted by the heat over an area of more than half a mou. When hit iron armour was quite pierced through." The Song Dynasty official Li Zengbo wrote in 1257 that arsenals should have several hundred thousand iron bomb shells available and that when he was in Jingzhou, about one to two thousand were produced each month for dispatch of ten to twenty thousand at a time to Xiangyang and Yingzhou.
The Ming Dynasty text Huolongjing describes the use of poisonous gunpowder bombs, including the "wind-and-dust" bomb. During the Mongol invasions of Japan, the Mongols used the explosive "thunder-crash bombs" against the Japanese. Archaeological evidence of the "thunder-crash bombs" has been discovered in an underwater shipwreck off the shore of Japan by the Kyushu Okinawa Society for Underwater Archaeology. X-rays by Japanese scientists of the excavated shells confirmed. Explosive shock waves can cause situations such as body displacement, internal bleeding and ruptured eardrums. Shock waves produced by explosive events have two distinct components, the positive and negative wave; the positive wave shoves outward from the point of detonation, followed by the trailing vacuum space "sucking back" towards the point of origin as the shock bubble collapses. The greatest defense against shock injuries is distance from the source of shock; as a point of reference, the overpressure at the Oklahoma City bombing was estimated in the range of 28 MPa.
A thermal wave is created by the sudden release of heat caused by an explosion. Military bomb tests have documented temperatures of up to 2,480 °C. While capable of inflicting severe to catastrophic burns and causing secondary fires, thermal wave effects are considered limited in range compared to shock and fragmentation; this rule has been challenged, however, by military development of thermobaric weapons, which employ a combination of negative shock wave effects and extreme temperature to incinerate objects within the blast radius. This would be fatal to humans. Fragmentation is produced by the acceleration of shattered pieces of bomb casing and adjacent physical objects; the use of fragmentation in bombs dates to the 14th century, appears in the Ming Dynasty text Huolongjing. The fragmentation bombs were filled with iron pieces of broken porcelain. Once the bomb explodes, the resulting shrapnel is capable of piercing the skin and blinding enemy soldiers. While conventionally viewed as small metal shards moving at super-supersonic and hypersonic speeds, fragmentation can occur in epic proportions and travel for extensive distances.
When the SS Grandcamp exploded in the Texas City Disaster on April 16, 1947, one fragment of that blast was a two-ton anchor, hurled nearly two miles inland to embed itself in the parking lot of the Pan American refinery. Fragmentation should not be confused with shrapnel, which relies on the momentum of a shell to cause damage. To people who are close to a blast incident, such as bomb disposal technicians, soldiers wearing body armor, deminers, or individuals wearing little to no protection, there are four types of blast effects on the human body: overpressure, fragmentation and heat. Overpressure refers to the sudden and drastic rise in ambient pressure that can damage the internal organs leading to permanent damage or death. Fragmentation includes the shrapnel described above but can include sand and vegetation from the area surrounding the blast source; this is common in anti-personnel mine blasts. The projection of materials poses a lethal threat caused by cuts in soft tiss
Mary Lou Retton
Mary Lou Retton is a retired American gymnast. At the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, she won a gold medal in the individual all-around competition, as well as two silver medals and two bronze medals, her performance made her one of the most popular athletes in the United States of America. Her gold medal was a historic win as Retton was the first-ever American woman to win the all-around gold medal at the Olympics. Mary Lou Retton was born on January 1968, in Fairmont, West Virginia, her father, operated a coal-industry transportation equipment business. She did not graduate, she competed in the 1984 Olympic games in Los Angeles, during her sophomore year of high school. She grew up in a Christian home, she and her family attend Second Baptist Church Houston. Retton lived in Houston, until 2009, when her family returned to West Virginia and again moved back to Houston in 2012, she was married to former University of Texas quarterback and Houston real estate developer Shannon Kelley, who now works for the Houston Baptist University athletic department.
Together they have four daughters: Shayla, McKenna, a current NCAA gymnast at Louisiana State University and Emma. Retton divorced her husband in February 2018. Retton was inspired by watching Nadia Comăneci outshine defending Olympic two-event winner Olga Korbut on television at the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal, when she herself was eight years of age, she took up gymnastics in her hometown of Fairmont, she was coached by Gary Rafaloski. She decided to move to Houston, Texas, to train under Romanians Béla and Márta Károlyi, who had coached Nadia Comăneci before their defection to the United States. Under the Károlyis, Retton soon began to make a name for herself in the U. S. winning the American Cup in 1983 and placing second to Dianne Durham at the US Nationals that same year. Though Retton missed the World Gymnastics Championships in 1983 due to a wrist injury, she won the American Classic in 1983 and 1984, as well as Japan's Chunichi Cup in 1983. After winning her second American Cup, the U.
S. Nationals, the U. S. Olympic Trials in 1984, Retton suffered a knee injury when she was performing a floor routine at a local gymnastics center, she had sat down to sign autographs when she felt her knee lock, forcing her to undergo an operation five weeks prior to the 1984 Summer Olympics, which were going to be held in Los Angeles—the first time the Summer Olympics had been held in the United States in 52 years. She recovered just in time for this most prestigious of tournaments, in the competition, boycotted by the Soviet bloc nations except for Romania, Retton was engaged in a close battle with Ecaterina Szabo of Romania for the all-around gold medal. Trailing Szabo by 0.15 with two events to go, Retton scored perfect 10s on floor exercise and vault—the last event in an dramatic fashion, as there had been fears that her knee injury and the subsequent surgery might impair her performance. Retton won the all-around gold medal by 0.05 points, beating Szabo and becoming the first American to receive the all-around gold medal.
She became the first female gymnast from outside Eastern Europe to win the individual all-around gold. At the same Olympics, Retton won four additional medals: silver in the team competition and the horse vault, bronze in the floor exercise and uneven bars. For her performance, she was named Sports Illustrated Magazine's "Sportswoman of the Year." She appeared on a Wheaties box, became the cereal's first official spokeswoman. In 1985, Retton won the American Cup all-around competition for the final time, she retired in 1986. An ardent Christian conservative, she was an outspoken supporter of the Reagan Administration in the United States, she appeared in a variety of televised ads supporting Ronald Reagan as well as appearing at a rally for Reagan's reelection campaign just a month after the Olympics in her home state of West Virginia. Retton delivered the Pledge of Allegiance with fellow former gymnast and 1996 Olympic gold medalist Kerri Strug on the second night of the 2004 Republican National Convention.
Retton's hometown, West Virginia, named a road and a park in the town after her. Having retired from gymnastics after winning an unprecedented third American Cup title in 1985, as noted above, she had cameo appearances as herself in Scrooged and Naked Gun 33⅓: The Final Insult. Retton was elected to the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame in 1992. In 1993, the Associated Press released results of a sports study in which Retton was statistically tied for first place with fellow Olympian Dorothy Hamill as the most popular athlete in America. In 1997, Retton was inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame. During the 1990s, Retton worked as a spokeswoman for the US drugstore chain Revco, appearing in advertisements for it. Retton has many commercial endorsements, including shampoo, she was the first female athlete to be pictured on the front of a Wheaties box, General Mills stated that Wheaties sales improved after her appearance. She is a frequent analyst for televised gymnastics and attended The University of Texas at Austin after the Olympics.
Retton was thrust back into the spotlight when the USA Gymnastics sex abuse scandal hit the news in 2017. When the Sex Abuse Act of 2017 was introduced to the 115th Congress and other members of USA Gymnastics met with Senator Dianne Feinstein regarding the Federation's sexual assault policies, with the ultimate aim of blocking the bill. 1985: ABC Funfit.
Priscilla Ann Presley is an American actress and business magnate. She is the former wife of American singer Elvis Presley as well as former chairwoman of Elvis Presley Enterprises, the company that turned Graceland into one of the top tourist attractions in the United States. In her acting career, Presley had a starring role as Jane Spencer in the three successful Naked Gun films in which she co-starred with Leslie Nielsen, played the role of Jenna Wade on the long-running television series Dallas. Presley was born Priscilla Ann Wagner in Brooklyn, her maternal grandfather, Albert Henry Iversen, was born in 1899 in Norway. He migrated to the United States, where he married Lorraine, of Scots-Irish and English descent, their only daughter, Anna Lillian Iversen, was born in March 1926. She was called – or her name was changed to – Ann. At the age of 19, she gave birth to Priscilla. Presley's biological father was US Navy pilot James Wagner, his parents were Harold Wagner. On August 10, 1944, at the age of 23, he married Presley's mother.
He was killed in a plane crash. When she discovered this "family secret" through clues in an old wooden box of family keepsakes, her mother encouraged her to keep the revelation from her half-siblings from Ann's second marriage, lest it "endanger our family closeness."In 1948, Priscilla's mother, had met a United States Air Force officer named Paul Beaulieu, from Quebec, Canada. The couple was married within a year, he took over rearing Priscilla and was the only father she would know. She took his surname, over the next few years, helped care for the growing family as his Air Force career moved them from Connecticut to New Mexico to Maine, she described herself during this period as "a shy, little girl, unhappily accustomed to moving from base to base every two or three years." Presley recalled how uneasy she felt having to move so never knowing if she could make friends for life, or if she would fit in with the people she'd meet at the next place. In 1956, the Beaulieus settled in Del Valle, but soon her stepfather was transferred to Wiesbaden, Germany.
Priscilla was "crushed" by this news, as just after junior high, her fear of having to leave friends behind and make new ones was once again justified. When the Beaulieus arrived in Germany, they stayed at the Helene Hotel, after three months, living there became too expensive, they looked for a place to rent; the family settled into a large apartment in a "vintage building constructed long before World War I." Soon after moving in, the Beaulieus realized it was a brothel, given the scarcity of housing, they had little choice but to remain. During Elvis Presley's Army career, he met Priscilla, on September 13, 1959, during a party at his home in Bad Nauheim, Germany. Though only 14 years old, she made a huge impression on him. Elvis regressed to acting like an "awkward, embarrassed" boy-next-door figure in front of her. By the end of the evening, however, he managed to compose himself. Priscilla's parents were upset by her late return home the night of that first meeting and insisted that she never see Elvis again.
But his eagerness for another rendezvous and his promise never to bring her home late again led them to relent. Thereafter, he and Priscilla were together until his departure from West Germany, in March 1960. After Elvis left, Priscilla was inundated with requests for interviews from media outlets around the world, she received fan mail from Elvis fans, some nice and some not so nice, as well as mail from "lonesome G. I.s". With gossip-magazine rumors swirling about his relationship with Nancy Sinatra, Priscilla became convinced that her romance with Elvis was over and she would never see him again. After Elvis's return to the US, she managed to stay in touch with him by phone, though they would not see each other again until the summer of 1962, when Priscilla's parents agreed to let her visit for two weeks, they allowed her to go on the condition that Elvis pay for a first-class round trip and arrange for her to be chaperoned at all times, that she write home every day. Elvis agreed to all these demands, Priscilla flew to Los Angeles.
Elvis told her they were going to Las Vegas, to throw her parents off the scent, he had Priscilla pre-write a postcard for every day they'd be away — to be mailed from Los Angeles by a member of his staff. It was during this visit, while on a trip to Las Vegas, that Priscilla first took amphetamines and sleeping pills to keep up with Elvis's lifestyle. After another visit at Christmas, Priscilla's parents let her move to Memphis for good in March 1963. Part of the agreement was that she would attend an all-girls Catholic school, the Immaculate Conception High School in Memphis and live with Elvis's father and his stepmother in a separate house a few streets away from the Graceland mansion, on Hermitage Drive 3650, until she graduated from high school in June 1963. Part of the agreement was that they would marry. However, according to her own 1985 autobiography, Elvis and Me, she "spent entire nights with Grandma at Graceland and moved her belongings there", it is believed she had her permanent residence at Graceland as early as May 1963.
Her parents agreed to her living there if Elvis promised to marry her. Priscilla said, "The move was natural. I was there all the time anyway."Priscilla was keen to go to Hollywood with Elvis, but he kept telling her that he was too busy and had her stay in Memphis. During the filmi
The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti
A phonograph record is an analog sound storage medium in the form of a flat disc with an inscribed, modulated spiral groove. The groove starts near the periphery and ends near the center of the disc. At first, the discs were made from shellac. In recent decades, records have sometimes been called vinyl records, or vinyl; the phonograph disc record was the primary medium used for music reproduction throughout the 20th century. It had co-existed with the phonograph cylinder from the late 1880s and had superseded it by around 1912. Records retained the largest market share when new formats such as the compact cassette were mass-marketed. By the 1980s, digital media, in the form of the compact disc, had gained a larger market share, the vinyl record left the mainstream in 1991. Since the 1990s, records continue to be manufactured and sold on a smaller scale, are used by disc jockeys and released by artists in dance music genres, listened to by a growing niche market of audiophiles; the phonograph record has made a notable niche resurgence in the early 21st century – 9.2 million records were sold in the U.
S. in 2014, a 260% increase since 2009. In the UK sales have increased five-fold from 2009 to 2014; as of 2017, 48 record pressing facilities remain worldwide, 18 in the United States and 30 in other countries. The increased popularity of vinyl has led to the investment in new and modern record-pressing machines. Only two producers of lacquers remain: Apollo Masters in California, MDC in Japan. Phonograph records are described by their diameter in inches, the rotational speed in revolutions per minute at which they are played, their time capacity, determined by their diameter and speed. Vinyl records may be scratched or warped if stored incorrectly but if they are not exposed to high heat, carelessly handled or broken, a vinyl record has the potential to last for centuries; the large cover are valued by collectors and artists for the space given for visual expression when it comes to the long play vinyl LP. The phonautograph, patented by Léon Scott in 1857, used a vibrating diaphragm and stylus to graphically record sound waves as tracings on sheets of paper, purely for visual analysis and without any intent of playing them back.
In the 2000s, these tracings were first scanned by audio engineers and digitally converted into audible sound. Phonautograms of singing and speech made by Scott in 1860 were played back as sound for the first time in 2008. Along with a tuning fork tone and unintelligible snippets recorded as early as 1857, these are the earliest known recordings of sound. In 1877, Thomas Edison invented the phonograph. Unlike the phonautograph, it could both record and reproduce sound. Despite the similarity of name, there is no documentary evidence that Edison's phonograph was based on Scott's phonautograph. Edison first tried recording sound on a wax-impregnated paper tape, with the idea of creating a "telephone repeater" analogous to the telegraph repeater he had been working on. Although the visible results made him confident that sound could be physically recorded and reproduced, his notes do not indicate that he reproduced sound before his first experiment in which he used tinfoil as a recording medium several months later.
The tinfoil was wrapped around a grooved metal cylinder and a sound-vibrated stylus indented the tinfoil while the cylinder was rotated. The recording could be played back immediately; the Scientific American article that introduced the tinfoil phonograph to the public mentioned Marey and Barlow as well as Scott as creators of devices for recording but not reproducing sound. Edison invented variations of the phonograph that used tape and disc formats. Numerous applications for the phonograph were envisioned, but although it enjoyed a brief vogue as a startling novelty at public demonstrations, the tinfoil phonograph proved too crude to be put to any practical use. A decade Edison developed a improved phonograph that used a hollow wax cylinder instead of a foil sheet; this proved to be both a better-sounding and far more useful and durable device. The wax phonograph cylinder created the recorded sound market at the end of the 1880s and dominated it through the early years of the 20th century. Lateral-cut disc records were developed in the United States by Emile Berliner, who named his system the "gramophone", distinguishing it from Edison's wax cylinder "phonograph" and American Graphophone's wax cylinder "graphophone".
Berliner's earliest discs, first marketed in 1889, only in Europe, were 12.5 cm in diameter, were played with a small hand-propelled machine. Both the records and the machine were adequate only for use as a toy or curiosity, due to the limited sound quality. In the United States in 1894, under the Berliner Gramophone trademark, Berliner started marketing records of 7 inches diameter with somewhat more substantial entertainment value, along with somewhat more substantial gramophones to play them. Berliner's records had poor sound quality compared to wax cylinders, but his manufacturing associate Eldridge R. Johnson improved it. Abandoning Berliner's "Gramophone" tradem
William Lindsey Erwin was an American film and stage actor with over 250 television and film credits. A veteran character actor, he is known for his 1993 Emmy Award-nominated performance on Seinfeld, portraying the embittered, irascible retiree Sid Fields, he made notable appearances on shows such as I Love Lucy and Star Trek: The Next Generation. In cinema, his most recognized role is that of Arthur, a kindly bellhop at the Mackinac Island Grand Hotel, in Somewhere in Time. Erwin was a self-taught cartoonist, published in The New Yorker and Los Angeles, he won a Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award, four Drama-Logue Awards, Gilmore Brown Award for Career Achievement, Pacific Pioneer Broadcasters' Diamond Circle Award, Distinguished Alumnus Award from Angelo State University. Erwin was born in Texas, to Lee Eugene and Ida Mae Erwin, he had a sister named Mary Gene Cosper. He attended San Angelo College before earning his bachelor's degree in journalism at the University of Texas, graduating in 1935.
He completed a masters of theater arts at California's Pasadena Playhouse in 1941. After serving as a Captain in the United States Army Air Corps in World War II, Erwin returned to Hollywood to resume his acting career, his first film role was in the 1942 film You're in the Army Now. Erwin acted in productions at the Pasadena Playhouse, the Laguna Beach Playhouse, the La Jolla Playhouse, other venues in the Los Angeles area. In the late 1950s, Erwin was in such films as Man from Del Rio and The Night Runner, before playing Jack Nicholson's father in The Cry Baby Killer, Nicholson's first starring role in 1958; the long out-of-print film was released on DVD on November 22, 2006. He had credited small roles in films such as The Christine Jorgensen Story, How Awful About Allan, Candy Stripe Nurses and Tarantulas: The Deadly Cargo, before he co-starred alongside Christopher Reeve and Jane Seymour in the 1980 romantic fantasy Somewhere in Time as Arthur Biehl, the Grand Hotel's venerable bellman, attended annual reunions of cast and fans of the film at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island, Michigan.
Erwin appeared in numerous films by John Hughes, with cameos in Planes and Automobiles, She's Having a Baby, Home Alone, Dennis the Menace. Hughes paired him with Billie Bird playing his wife, his film career included roles in Invitation to Hell, Naked Gun 33⅓: The Final Insult, Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead, Menno's Mind, Chairman of the Board, Forces of Nature, Inferno and A Crack in the Floor. His television credits were far more numerous in the 1950s, having appeared in such television series as I Love Lucy, Trackdown, Colgate Theatre, Perry Mason and The Rifleman. In the 1960s, Erwin appeared in television series such as: The Andy Griffith Show, Mister Ed, The Twilight Zone, 87th Precinct, My Three Sons, The Fugitive, Leave it To Beaver and Mannix. In the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, he appeared in Barnaby Jones, Gunsmoke, Married With Children, E/R, Highway to Heaven, Who's The Boss?, Growing Pains, Full House, The Golden Girls, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman and The Drew Carey Show.
In Star Trek: The Next Generation, Erwin played Dr. Dalen Quaice, a friend and mentor of Dr. Beverly Crusher, he was the first character to disappear in the episode "Remember Me". In the Seinfeld episode, for which Erwin received an Emmy nomination for outstanding guest actor in a comedy series, he played Sid Fields, who participates in the Foster-A-Grandpa Program, which pairs him with Jerry Seinfeld. Erwin's crochety, foul-mouthed character ensures that the relationship is doomed from the beginning. Erwin reunited with Michael Richards when he guest-starred on the short-lived The Michael Richards Show. In the 2000s, Erwin appeared on Monk, The West Wing, The King of Queens, Everwood and My Name Is Earl. After Erwin began his theatrical career with the Laguna Beach and La Jolla playhouses in 1940, he worked as ventriloquist Edgar Bergen's stage manager for Bergen's 1941 tour of the country. Erwin dryly recalled, "I was in charge of the dummies." Erwin was married to actress and journalist Fran MacLachlan Erwin from 1948 to her death in 1995.
They lived in the Hollywood Hills and had two sons and Timothy, two daughters and Kelly. Erwin died from natural causes at his home in Studio City, California on December 29, 2010, he lived near the production lot. Bill Erwin on IMDb