Today in History


Today is Monday, Aug. 7, the 219th day of 2023. There are 146 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Aug. 7, 1942, U.S. and other allied forces landed at Guadalcanal, marking the start of the first major allied offensive in the Pacific during World War II.

On this date:

In 1789, the U.S. Department of War was established by Congress.

In 1882, the famous feud between the Hatfields of West Virginia and the McCoys of Kentucky erupted into full-scale violence.

In 1963, first lady Jacqueline Kennedy gave birth to a boy, Patrick Bouvier Kennedy, who died two days later of respiratory distress syndrome.

In 1964, Congress passed the Gulf of Tonkin resolution, giving President Lyndon B. Johnson broad powers in dealing with reported North Vietnamese attacks on U.S. forces.

In 1971, the Apollo 15 moon mission ended successfully as its command module splashed down in the Pacific Ocean.

In 1989, a plane carrying U.S. Rep. Mickey Leland, D-Texas, and 14 others disappeared over Ethiopia. (The wreckage of the plane was found six days later; there were no survivors.)

In 1990, President George H.W. Bush ordered U.S. troops and warplanes to Saudi Arabia to guard the oil-rich desert kingdom against a possible invasion by Iraq.

In 1998, terrorist bombs at U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania killed 224 people, including 12 Americans.

In 2005, ABC News anchorman Peter Jennings died in New York at age 67.

In 2007, San Francisco’s Barry Bonds hit home run No. 756 to break Hank Aaron’s storied record with one out in the fifth inning of a game against the Washington Nationals, who won, 8-6.

In 2010, Elena Kagan was sworn in as the 112th justice and fourth woman to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court.

In 2015, Colorado theater shooter James Holmes was spared the death penalty in favor of life in prison after a jury in Centennial failed to agree on whether he should be executed for his murderous attack on a packed movie premiere that left 12 people dead.

Ten years ago: President Barack Obama’s five-year effort to reboot U.S.-Russian relations crashed as the White House abruptly canceled his planned face-to-face summit with Russia’s Vladimir Putin. The Major League Baseball Players Association formally appealed Alex Rodriguez’s drug probe suspension, sending the case to an independent arbitrator. (The suspension was withheld.)

Five years ago: Sharice Davids won a Democratic congressional primary in Kansas, becoming the state’s first Native American and gay nominee for Congress. (Davids went on to become one of the first two Native American women elected to the House.) The fourth suspect in the shooting death of emerging South Florida rap star XXXTentacion turned himself in to authorities. Chicago police said they would deploy hundreds of additional officers to neighborhoods where a burst of gun violence over the weekend left at least 11 people dead and 70 wounded. Hall of Fame hockey forward Stan Mikita, who helped the Chicago Black Hawks win the 1961 Stanley Cup, died at the age of 78.

One year ago: Democrats pushed their estimated $740 billion election-year economic package through the Senate. The hard-fought compromise was less ambitious than President Joe Biden’s original domestic vision but it still met deep-rooted party goals of slowing global warming, moderating pharmaceutical costs and taxing immense corporations. A cease-fire between Israel and Palestinian militants took effect in a bid to end nearly three days of violence that killed dozens of Palestinians and disrupted the lives of hundreds of thousands of Israelis. Colombia’s first leftist president, Gustavo Petro, was sworn into office, promising to fight inequality and heralding a turning point in the history of a country haunted by a long war between the government and guerrilla groups.

Today’s Birthdays: Singer Lana Cantrell is 80. Former FBI Director Robert Mueller is 79. Actor John Glover is 79. Actor David Rasche is 79. Former diplomat, talk show host and activist Alan Keyes is 73. Country singer Rodney Crowell is 73. Actor Caroline Aaron is 71. Comedian Alexei Sayle is 71. Actor Wayne Knight is 68. Rock singer Bruce Dickinson is 65. Marathon runner Alberto Salazar is 65. Actor David Duchovny is 63. Actor Delane Matthews is 62. Actor Harold Perrineau is 60. Jazz musician Marcus Roberts is 60. Country singer Raul Malo is 58. Actor David Mann is 57. Actor Charlotte Lewis is 56. Actor Sydney Penny is 52. Actor Greg Serano is 51. Actor Michael Shannon is 49. Actor Charlize Theron is 48. Rock musician Barry Kerch is 47. Actor Eric Johnson is 44. Actor Randy Wayne is 42. Actor-writer Brit Marling is 41. NHL center Sidney Crosby is 36. MLB All-Star Mike Trout is 32. Actor Liam James is 27.

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