Annie Oakley was a famous American sharpshooter in the late 19th century. In 1889, Annie Oakley was performing at the Berlin Charlottenburg Race Course, where Kaiser Wilhelm II (the German Emperor whose support of Austria-Hungary in 1914 led to the first world war) had a box seat.
As part of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, Annie announced she would shoot the ashes off any man or woman’s Havana cigar.
Normally, her husband Frank Butler would come out of the audience as part of the act so that no volunteers were actually harmed. But on that day, Kaiser Wilhem II took her up on her offer.
Because nobody usually volunteered, Annie was taken aback, but couldn’t back down since she made her dare. So she measured the distance and the Kaiser took out a cigar. The German police thought it was a joke until the Kaiser told them to get out of the way.
Annie Oakley raised her pistol and blew the ashes right off. Had she missed and hit him, he might not have been around to support Austria-Hungary 25 years later, which might have avoided the first world war. In 1914, when The Great War started, Oakley wrote the Kaiser asking for a second chance. He did not respond.