Today in Soap Opera History (November 8)

1965: Days of our Lives premiered on NBC.
"History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage, need not be lived again."
― Maya Angelou

"Today in Soap Opera History" is a collection of the most memorable, interesting and influential events in the history of scripted, serialized programs. From birthdays and anniversaries to scandals and controversies, every day this column celebrates the soap opera in American culture.

On this date in...

1965: On Another World, Bill (Joseph Gallison) pressed Missy (Carol Roux) to marry him while they were at the Kopper Kettle, but she declined.

1965: On Peyton Place, after the interrogation of Kim, Stella (Lee Grant) was called to the witness stand.

1965: NBC aired the very first episode of Days of our Lives, created by Ted Corday, Betty Corday and Irna Phillips, starring Macdonald Carey and Frances Reid as Tom and Alice Horton.

Watch the rest of the first episode here.

Read "The Complete Story of Days" from 1965 to 1973 here.

1966: On The Edge of Night, Laura (Millette Alexander) confessed to the murder of Rick Oliver.

1968: On The Edge of Night, Nancy (Ann Flood) and Mike (Larry Hugo) consulted with police chief Phil Capice about Lee's (Tony Roberts) possible involvement in the Kurtz murder. When Nancy visited Lee's instructor at the art institute, she learned that Lee's work began to suffer right after the murder took place.

1976: Australian evening soap opera The Young Doctors premiered on the Nine Network. It ran for 1,396 episodes until 1983.

1979: On As the World Turns, Kim Stewart (Kathryn Hays) visited Lisa Colman (Eileen Fulton) at The Willows.

1985: On Days of our Lives, Patch (Stephen Nichols) kidnapped Hope Williams Brady (Kristian Alfonso) at knifepoint.

1993: On General Hospital, Sly Eckert (Glenn Walker Harris Jr.) brought Lucky Spencer (Jonathan Jackson) food in the catacombs. Luke (Anthony Geary) and Laura (Genie Francis) were rescued from the falls by a helicopter and crashed a wedding. Later, they came across an old house and took shelter for the night.

Thanks to Enrique for sending in the item above.

1995: On One Life to Live, David Vickers (Tuc Watkins) told Kelly Cramer (Gina Tognoni) that she was the only woman for him. Later, Joey Buchanan (Nathan Fillion) interrupted the happy couple to reveal David was with "Madeline Helmore" last night.

1999: On As the World Turns, Vicky McKinnon (Jensen Buchanan) was presumed dead in a plane crash.

2000: Days of our Lives celebrated its 35th anniversary with a musical montage.

2010: John Wesley Shipp debuted as Eddie Ford on One Life to Live.

Thanks to Terrence for sending in the item above.

Celebrating a birthday today are:
Alfre Woodard (ex-Ruby Jean, True Blood; ex-Betty, Desperate Housewives) - 63
Courtney Thorne-Smith (ex-Allison, Melrose Place) - 49
Kamar de los Reyes (ex-Antonio, One Life to Live) - 48
Bruno Gunn (ex-Rawley, Guiding Light) - 47
Parker Posey (ex-Tess, As the World Turns) - 46
Joe Duer (ex-George, Guiding Light; ex-Ralph, Days of our Lives; ex-Agent Morrison, Passions) - 46
Gretchen Mol (Gillian, Boardwalk Empire) - 43
Matthew Rhys (ex-Kevin, Brothers & Sisters) - 41
Azura Skye (ex-Fiona, American Horror Story) - 34
Connie Fletcher (ex-Erin, All My Children) - 32
Jessica Lowndes (ex-Adrianna, 90210; ex-Mandi, Greek) - 27

EDITOR'S NOTE: If you would like to submit a soap history entry for this date or a future date, email

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