Today in History


By the Associated Press

Today is Saturday, August 15, the 227th day of 2015. There are 138 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On August 15, 1945, Japan’s Emperor Hirohito announced in a recorded radio address that his country had accepted terms of surrender for ending World War II.

On this date:

In 1057, Macbeth, King of Scots, was killed in battle by Malcolm, the eldest son of King Duncan, whom Macbeth had slain.

In 1483, the Sistine Chapel was consecrated by Pope Sixtus IV.

In 1812, the Battle of Fort Dearborn took place as Potawatomi warriors attacked a U.S. military garrison of about 100 people. (Most of the garrison was killed, while the remainder were taken prisoner.)

In 1914, the Panama Canal officially opened as the SS Ancon crossed the just-completed waterway between the Pacific and Atlantic oceans.

In 1935, humorist Will Rogers and aviator Wiley Post were killed when their airplane crashed near Point Barrow in the Alaska Territory.

In 1939, the MGM musical “The Wizard of Oz” opened at the Grauman’s Chinese Theater in Hollywood.

In 1947, India became independent after some 200 years of British rule.

In 1965, The Beatles played to a crowd of more than 55,000 at New York’s Shea Stadium.

In 1969, the Woodstock Music and Art Fair opened in upstate New York.

In 1974, a gunman attempted to shoot South Korean President Park Chung-hee during a speech; although Park was unhurt, his wife, Yuk Young-soo, was struck and killed, along with a teenage girl. (The gunman was later executed.)

In 1989, F.W. de Klerk was sworn in as acting president of South Africa, one day after P.W. Botha resigned as the result of a power struggle within the National Party.

In 1995, the Justice Department agreed to pay $3.1 million to white separatist Randy Weaver and his family to settle their claims over the killing of Weaver’s wife and son during a 1992 siege by federal agents at Ruby Ridge, Idaho. Pioneering TV journalist and Timex watch pitchman John Cameron Swayze died in Sarasota, Florida, at age 89.

Ten years ago: Iraqi leaders failed to meet a key deadline for finishing a new constitution. Gang members rioted in seven Guatemalan prisons, leaving 35 inmates dead. Phil Mickelson claimed a one-shot victory in the PGA Championship in Springfield, New Jersey. James Dougherty, the retired Los Angeles detective who was the first husband of Marilyn Monroe, died in San Rafael, California, at age 84.

Five years ago: Former medical student Philip Markoff, charged with killing Julissa Brisman, a masseuse he’d met through Craigslist, was found dead in his Boston jail cell, a suicide. Martin Kaymer won the PGA Championship in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, in a three-hole playoff that did not include Dustin Johnson, who was penalized two strokes for grounding his club in a bunker on the last hole.

One year ago: A grand jury indicted Texas Gov. Rick Perry for allegedly abusing the powers of his office by carrying out a threat to veto funding for state prosecutors investigating public corruption.

Today’s Birthdays: Actress Rose Marie is 92. Political activist Phyllis Schlafly is 91. Actor Mike Connors is 90. Actress Lori Nelson is 82. Civil rights activist Vernon Jordan is 80. Actor Jim Dale is 80. Actress Pat Priest is 79. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer is 77. U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., is 77. Musician Pete York (Spencer Davis Group) is 73. Author-journalist Linda Ellerbee is 71. Songwriter Jimmy Webb is 69. Rock singer-musician Tom Johnston (The Doobie Brothers) is 67. Actress Phyllis Smith is 66. Britain’s Princess Anne is 65. Actress Tess Harper is 65. Actor Larry Mathews is 60. Actor Zeljko Ivanek (ZEHL’-koh eh-VON’-ehk) is 58. Actor-comedian Rondell Sheridan is 57. Rock singer-musician Matt Johnson (The The) is 54. Movie director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu (ihn-YAH’-ee-tu) is 52. Philanthropist Melinda Gates is 51. Country singer Angela Rae (Wild Horses) is 49. Actor Peter Hermann is 48. Actress Debra Messing is 47. Actor Anthony Anderson is 45. Actor Ben Affleck is 43. Singer Mikey Graham (Boyzone) is 43. Actress Natasha Henstridge is 41. Actress Nicole Paggi is 38. Christian rock musician Tim Foreman (Switchfoot) is 37. Figure skater Jennifer Kirk is 31. Latin pop singer Belinda (cq) is 26. Rock singer Joe Jonas (The Jonas Brothers) is 26. Actor-singer Carlos Pena is 26. Actress Jennifer Lawrence is 25. Rap DJ Smoove da General (Cali Swag District) is 25.

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