Today in History

Today In History- August 21

Some Notable Events On August 21

  • 1901 – The International Secretariat of National Trade Union Centres is founded in Copenhagen.
  • 1911 – The Mona Lisa is stolen by a Louvre employee.
  • 1914 – World War I: The Battle of Charleroi, a successful German attack across the River Sambre that pre-empted a French offensive in the same area.
  • 1918 – World War I: The Second Battle of the Somme begins.
  • 1942 – World War II: The flag of Nazi Germany is planted atop Mount Elbrus, the highest peak of the Caucasus mountain range.
  • 1942 – World War II: The Guadalcanal Campaign: American forces defeat an attack by Imperial Japanese Army soldiers in the Battle of the Tenaru.
  • 1944 – Dumbarton Oaks Conference, prelude to the United Nations, begins.
  • 1944 – World War II: Canadian and Polish units capture the strategically important town of Falaise, Calvados, France.
  • 1945 – Physicist Harry Daghlian is fatally irradiated in a criticality accident during an experiment with the Demon core at Los Alamos National Laboratory.
  • 1957 – The Soviet Union successfully conducts a long-range test flight of the R-7 Semyorka, the first intercontinental ballistic missile.
  • 1959 – United States President Dwight D. Eisenhower signs an executive order proclaiming Hawaii the 50th state of the union. Hawaii’s admission is currently commemorated by Hawaii Admission Day
  • 1961 – American country music singer Patsy Cline returns to record producer Owen Bradley’s studio in Nashville, Tennessee to record her vocals to Willie Nelson’s “Crazy.” Rib pain lingering from her near fatal car accident earlier in the year had kept her vocal range stifled the week prior. This time, Cline was successful in the first take. It marked the first and last time her vocals were dubbed to the Decca Records session musicians’ previously recorded instrumental track. Prior to this event, Cline had always recorded with live accompaniment. Patsy Cline died in a plane crash on March 5, 1963, outside Camden, Tennessee. The recording of “Crazy” would become her signature song.
  • 1961 – Motown releases what would be its first #1 hit, “Please Mr. Postman” by The Marvelettes.
  • 1963 – Xá Lợi Pagoda raids: The Army of the Republic of Vietnam Special Forces loyal to Ngô Đình Nhu, brother of President Ngo Dinh Diem, vandalizes Buddhist pagodas across the country, arresting thousands and leaving an estimated hundreds dead.
  • 1968 – Nicolae Ceaușescu, leader of Communist Romania, publicly condemns the Soviet led Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia, encouraging the Romanian population to arm itself against possible Soviet reprisals.
  • 1968 – James Anderson, Jr. posthumously receives the first Medal of Honor to be awarded to an African American U.S. Marine.
  • 1971 – A bomb exploded in the Liberal Party campaign rally in Plaza Miranda, Manila, Philippines with several anti-Marcos political candidates injured.
  • 1982 – Lebanese Civil War: The first troops of a multinational force lands in Beirut to oversee the Palestine Liberation Organization’s withdrawal from Lebanon.
  • 1983 – Philippine opposition leader Benigno Aquino, Jr. is assassinated at the Manila International Airport (now renamed Ninoy Aquino International Airport in his honor).
  • 1986 – Carbon dioxide gas erupts from volcanic Lake Nyos in Cameroon, killing up to 1,800 people within a 20-kilometer range.
  • 1988 – The 6.9 Mw Nepal earthquake shakes the Nepal–India border with a maximum Mercalli intensity of VIII (Severe), leaving 709–1,450 people killed and thousands injured.
  • 1991 – Latvia declares renewal of its full independence after the occupation of Soviet Union.
  • 1991 – Coup attempt against Mikhail Gorbachev collapses.
  • 1993 – NASA loses contact with the Mars Observer spacecraft.
  • 2013 – Hundreds of people are reported killed by chemical attacks in the Ghouta region of Syria.
  • 2017 – Great American Eclipse traverses the continental United States.

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