TODAY IN HISTORY


Today is Friday, Aug. 21, the 234th day of 2020. There are 132 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On August 21, 1831, Nat Turner launched a violent slave rebellion in Virginia resulting in the deaths of at least 55 whites. (Turner was later executed.)

On this date:

In 1609, Galileo Galilei demonstrated his new telescope to a group of officials atop the Campanile in Venice.

In 1945, President Harry S. Truman ended the Lend-Lease program that had shipped some $50 billion in aid supplies to America’s allies during World War II.

In 1961, country singer Patsy Cline recorded the Willie Nelson song “Crazy” in Nashville for Decca Records.

In 1983, Philippine opposition leader Benigno S. Aquino Jr., ending a self-imposed exile in the United States, was shot dead moments after stepping off a plane at Manila International Airport.

In 1991, the hard-line coup against Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev collapsed in the face of a popular uprising led by Russian Federation President Boris N. Yeltsin.

In 1992, an 11-day siege began at the cabin of white separatist Randy Weaver in Ruby Ridge, Idaho, as government agents tried to arrest Weaver for failing to appear in court on charges of selling two illegal sawed-off shotguns; on the first day of the siege, Weaver’s teenage son, Samuel, and Deputy U.S. Marshal William Degan were killed.

In 2014, Gov. Jay Nixon ordered the Missouri National Guard to begin withdrawing from Ferguson, where nightly scenes of unrest had erupted since a white police officer fatally shot a Black 18-year-old nearly two weeks earlier.

Today’s Birthdays: Actor-director Melvin Van Peebles is 88. Actor Clarence Williams III is 81. Rock-and-roll musician James Burton is 81. Singer Jackie DeShannon is 79. NBC newsman Harry Smith is 69. Actor Kim Cattrall is 64. College Football Hall of Famer and former NFL quarterback Jim McMahon is 61. Olympic gold medal sprinter Usain Bolt is 34. Country singer Kacey Musgraves is 32.