Today in History
On August 18, 1914, President Woodrow Wilson issued his Proclamation of Neutrality, aimed at keeping the United States out of World War I, saying, “The United States must be neutral in fact as well as in name during these days that are to try men’s souls.”
On this date:
In 1587, Virginia Dare became the first child of English parents to be born in present-day America, on what is now Roanoke Island in North Carolina. (However, the Roanoke colony ended up mysteriously disappearing.)
In 1838, the first marine expedition sponsored by the U.S. government set sail from Hampton Roads, Virginia; the crews traveled the southern Pacific Ocean, gathering scientific information.
In 1846, U.S. forces led by General Stephen W. Kearny captured Santa Fe, New Mexico.
In 1862, Dakota Indians began an uprising in Minnesota (the revolt was crushed by U.S. forces some six weeks later).
In 1920, the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, guaranteeing all American women’s right to vote, was ratified as Tennessee became the 36th state to approve it.
In 1938, President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Canadian Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King dedicated the Thousand Islands Bridge connecting the United States and Canada.
In 1954, during the Eisenhower administration, Assistant Secretary of Labor James Ernest Wilkins became the first black official to attend a meeting of the president’s Cabinet as he sat in for Labor Secretary James P. Mitchell.
In 1963, James Meredith became the first black student to graduate from the University of Mississippi.
In 1969, the Woodstock Music and Art Fair in Bethel, New York, wound to a close after three nights with a mid-morning set by Jimi Hendrix.
In 1976, two U.S. Army officers were killed in Korea’s demilitarized zone as a group of North Korean soldiers wielding axes and metal pikes attacked U.S. and South Korean soldiers.
In 1983, Hurricane Alicia slammed into the Texas coast, leaving 21 dead and causing more than a billion dollars’ worth of damage. The Kansas City Royals defeated the New York Yankees, 5-4, in the completion of the “pine-tar” game in just 12 minutes.
In 1988, Vice President George H.W. Bush accepted the presidential nomination of his party at the Republican National Convention in New Orleans.
Ten years ago: In Athens, Paul Hamm won the men’s gymnastics all-around Olympic gold medal by the closest margin ever in the event; controversy followed after it was discovered a scoring error cost Yang Tae-young of South Korea the title. Film composer Elmer Bernstein died in Ojai, California, at age 82. Hawaii’s first U.S. senator, Hiram L. Fong, died at age 97.
Five years ago: Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, during his first visit to Washington in five years, offered lavish praise for President Barack Obama; for his part, Obama spoke of an “extraordinary opportunity” for making peace in the Middle East. Ohio executed Jason Getsy, a murder-for-hire triggerman, for killing the mother of his intended target, who survived the attack. Robert Novak, the combative TV and newspaper pundit, died in Washington, D.C., at 78. Former South Korean President and Nobel Peace laureate Kim Dae-jung died in Seoul.
One year ago: David Miranda, partner of Guardian reporter Glenn Greenwald, who’d received leaks from former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, was detained for nearly nine hours at London’s Heathrow airport, triggering claims authorities were trying to interfere with reporting on the issue. Usain Bolt won his third gold medal of the world championships held in Moscow, anchoring Jamaica to victory in the 4 x 100-meter relay.
Today’s Birthdays: Former first lady Rosalynn Carter is 87. Movie director Roman Polanski is 81. Attorney and author Vincent Bugliosi is 80. Olympic gold medal decathlete Rafer Johnson is 79. Actor-director Robert Redford is 78. Actor Henry G. Sanders is 72. Rhythm-and-blues singer Sarah Dash (LaBelle) is 71. Actor-comedian Martin Mull is 71. Rock musician Dennis Elliott is 64. Comedian Elayne Boosler is 62. Country singer Steve Wilkinson (The Wilkinsons) is 59. Actor Denis Leary is 57. Actress Madeleine Stowe is 56. Former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner (GYT’-nur) is 53. ABC News reporter Bob Woodruff is 53. The former president of Mexico, Felipe Calderon, is 52. Bluegrass musician Jimmy Mattingly is 52. Actor Adam Storke is 52. Actor Craig Bierko (BEER’-koh) is 50. Rock singer-musician Zac Maloy (The Nixons) is 46. Rock singer and hip-hop artist Everlast is 45. Rapper Masta Killa (Wu-Tang Clan) is 45. Actor Christian Slater is 45. Actor Edward Norton is 45. Actor Malcolm-Jamal Warner is 44. Actress Kaitlin Olson is 39. Actor-writer-director Hadjii is 38. Rock musician Dirk Lance is 38. Actor-comedian Andy Samberg (TV: “Saturday Night Live”) is 36. Actress Mika Boorem is 27. Actress Maia Mitchell (TV: “The Fosters” “Teen Beach Movie”) is 21. Actress Parker McKenna Posey is 19.
Thought for Today: “The self-hatred that destroys is the waste of unfulfilled promise.” — Moss Hart, American playwright and director (1904-1961).
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