Wednesday, August 24, 2011

24th of August

Today is the 236th day of the year, and there are 129 days remaining until the new year.

49 BC - Julius Caesar's general Gaius Scribonius Curio is defeated at the Second Battle of Bagradas River by the Numidians under the command of Publius Attius Varus and the orders of King Juba.  Roman General Curio commits suicide to avoid being captured.

79 AD - The great Mount Vesuvius erupts.  The cities of Pompeii, Herculaneum, and Stabiae, are buried in volcanic ash.  (It is significant to note that the traditional date has been challenged, and many scholars believe that the event occurred on October 24).

410 - The Visigoths under their leader Alaric, begin the pillaging of the city of Rome.

1200 - King John of England, signee of the first Magna Carta, marries Isabella of Angouleme in the Bordeaux Cathedral.

1349 - Over six thousand Jews are killed in Mainz after being blamed for the bubonic plague.

1456 - The printing of the Gutenberg Bible is completed.

1680 - Thomas Blood dies at the age of 62.  He was an Irish Colonel, best known for attempting to steal the Crown Jewels of England from the Tower of London in 1671.

1682 - William Penn receives the area that is now the state of Delaware, and adds it to his colony of Pennsylvania.

1814 - British troops invade Washington, D.C. and burn down the White House and several other buildings during the War of 1812.

1821 - The Treaty of Cordoba is signed, what is today Veracruz, concluding the Mexican War of Independence from Spain.

1831 - Charles Darwin is asked to travel aboard the HMS Beagle as a young naturalist, and his work eventually made it one of the most famous ships in history.

1857 - The Panic of 1857 begins, setting off one of the most severe economic crises in United States History.

1875 - Captain Matthew Webb became the first person to swim the English Channel.

1891 - Thomas Edison patents the motion picture camera.

1909 - Workers commence the pouring of concrete for the Panama Canal.

1912 - Alaska becomes a United States territory.

1932 -Amelia Earhart becomes the first woman to fly across the United States non-stop, from Los Angeles, California to Newark, New Jersey.

1942 - During the Battle of Eastern Solomon Islands, the Japanese aircraft carrier Ryujo is sunk and the United States carrier Enterprise is heavily damaged.

1949 - The treaty that essentially creates the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) goes into effect.

1963 - As a result of the Xa Loi Pagoda raids, the U.S. State Department contacts the Embassy in Saigon to encourage South Vietnamese generals to launch a coup against President Diem if he did not remove his brother Ngo Dinh Nhu.

1981 - Mark David Chapman is sentenced to 20 years to life in prison for murdering musician John Lennon.

1989 - Cincinnati Reds manager Pete Rose, is banned from baseball for gambling by Commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti.

1991 - Mikhail Gorbachev resigns as the head of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.

1991 - Ukraine officially declares itself independent from the Soviet Union.

1995 - The computer software developer Microsoft releases its operating system Windows 95.

2006 - The International Astronomical Unit (IAU) redefines the term "planet" such that Pluto is now considered a Dwarf Planet.

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