This Day in History — August 14

This Day in History — August 14

Friday, August 14, 2020

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Today is the 227th day of 2020. There are 139 days left in the year.


2016: Usain Bolt of Jamaica becomes the first person to win three straight Olympic 100-metre titles, blowing down the straightaway in 9.81 seconds.


1385: Portuguese led by Blessed Nuno Alvares Pereira defeat Castilians at Aljubarrota, securing the independence of Portugal.

1784: First Russian colony in Alaska is founded on Kodiak Island.

1811: Paraguay declares itself independent of Spain; British occupy Java.

1848: The Oregon Territory is created.

1900: International forces capture Beijing, China, relieving foreigners besieged there for 56 days during the Boxer Rebellion. More than 1,500 Europeans had been killed by the Boxers, who protested western influences. It marked the demise of Western occupation in China.

1917: China declares war on Germany and Austria during World War I.

1935: The US Social Security Law is established, setting up a government pension system. Two years later, the first insurance payments go out to retired and unemployed individuals.

1941: The Atlantic Charter is signed by England and the United States, setting post-war goals and establishing a permanent structure of peace. Fifteen countries endorse the charter.

1945: Japan stops fighting resulting in the end of World War II.

1947: Pakistan, including what is now Bangladesh, gains independence from Britain with Mohammed Ali Jinnah as president.

1951: Newspaper publisher William Randolph Hearst, 88, dies in Beverly Hills, California.

1958: North Atlantic Treaty Organization countries announce relaxing trade restrictions with Soviet bloc and China, but the United States maintains trade embargo on China, North Korea and North Vietnam.

1968: Floods in India claim more than 1,000 lives in seven days.

1973: US bombing in Cambodia ends, marking official halt to 12 years of combat activity in Indochina.

1980: A rash of jet hijackings to Cuba by Cuban refugees in the United States continue when two Spanish-speaking men force a National Airlines flight from Miami to Puerto Rico to land at Jose Marti Airport in Havana.

1987: Iranian leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini threatens United States with punishment, blaming it for death of hundreds of pilgrims in Mecca, Saudi Arabia.

1990: King Hussein of Jordan flies to Washington in attempt to mediate US-Iraq confrontation; Syrian troops begin arriving in Saudi Arabia.

1998: Congolese President Laurent Kabila flees the capital, Kinshasa, as rebels advance through Congo.

2003: A massive power failure hits eight states in the north-eastern and mid-western US and Eastern Canada, knocking out electricity in an area that was home to more than 50 million people.

2004: Attackers with machetes and automatic weapons raided a UN refugee camp in western Burundi, shooting and hacking to death at least 180 men, women and children.

2008: US President George W Bush signs consumer-safety legislation that bans lead from children's toys, imposing the toughest standard in the world.

2010: The deadly, waterborne disease cholera surfaces in flood-ravaged Pakistan, the UN confirms, adding to the misery of 20 million people the Government says have been made homeless by the disaster.

2011: Six suicide bombers attack a governor's security meeting in one of Afghanistan's most secure provinces, killing 22 people and driving home the point that the Taliban is able to strike at will virtually anywhere in the country.

2012: The United States says China should not use bilateral talks to attempt to “divide and conquer” nations with competing territorial claims in the South China Sea.


Hans Christian Oersted, Danish physicist (1777-1851); Ernest Thayer, US author, wrote Casey at the Bat (1863-1940); John Galsworthy, British novelist and Nobel laureate (1867-1933); Richard von Krafft-Ebing, German physician (1840-1902); Pierre Schaeffer, French composer (1910-1995); Max Klein, US painter, invented 'paint by numbers' (1915-1993); Gary Larson, US cartoonist The Far Side (1950- ); Steve Martin, American actor (1945- ); Marcia Gay Harden, US actress (1959- ); Halle Berry, US actress (1966- )

— AP

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