UPI Almanac for Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014

Hawaii becomes a state, the Lake Nyos disaster in Cameroon ... on this date in history.
By United Press International   |   Aug. 21, 2014 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Thursday, Aug. 21, the 233rd day of 2014 with 132 to follow.

The moon is waning. Morning stars are Jupiter, Neptune, Uranus and Venus. Evening stars are Mars, Mercury and Saturn.

Those born on this date are under the sign of Leo. They include jazz great William "Count" Basie in 1904; mystery novelist Anthony Boucher in 1911; sports broadcasters Chris Schenkel in 1923 and Jack Buck in 1924; Britain's Princess Margaret in 1930; basketball Hall of Fame member Wilt Chamberlain in 1936; country/pop singer Kenny Rogers in 1938 (age 76); actors Melvin Van Peebles in 1932 (age 82) and Clarence Williams III in 1939 (age 75); pop singer Jackie DeShannon and film director Peter Weir, both in 1944 (age 70); actors Patty McCormack in 1945 (age 69) and Kim Cattrall in 1956 (age 58); rock musicians Glenn Hughes in 1951 (age 63) and Joe Strummer in 1952; former Ohio State football running back Archie Griffin, the only two-time Heisman Trophy winner, in 1954 (age 60); American Online founder Steve Case in 1958 (age 56); actors Carrie-Anne Moss in 1967 (age 47), Alicia Witt in 1975 (age 39) and Hayden Panettiere in 1989 (age 25); and Olympic gold medal sprinter Usain Bolt in 1986 (age 28).

On this date in history:

In 1831, Nat Turner launched a bloody slave insurrection in Southampton County, Va., leading to the deaths of 60 people. Turner, an educated minister who considered himself chosen by God to lead his people out of slavery, was hanged.

In 1935, Benny Goodman's nationally broadcast concert at Los Angeles' Palomar Theater was such a hit that it often has been referred to as the kickoff of the swing era.

In 1940, exiled Bolshevik leader Leon Trotsky was assassinated in Mexico City on orders from Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin.

In 1951, the United States ordered construction of the world's first atomic submarine, the USS Nautilus.

In 1959, Hawaii became the 50th state of the United States.

In 1983, Philippine opposition leader Benigno Aquino Jr. was assassinated as he stepped from a plane at the Manila airport.

In 1986, gas released from a volcanic lake in the remote mountains of Cameroon killed more than 1,700 people and injured 500. (It became known as the Lake Nyos disaster.)

In 1994, Ernesto Zedillo Ponce de Leon was elected president of Mexico.

In 2002, U.S. President George W. Bush said that while no decision had been made whether to go to war against Iraq he believed a "regime change" would be "in the best interest of the world."

In 2009, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, assessing the H1N1 virus, or swine flu, in a mostly flu-free time of year, said there had been 522 reported deaths from confirmed cases of the illness and 7,963 people hospitalized.

In 2011, Libyan rebels, with NATO support, stormed into Tripoli and seized control of Moammar Gadhafi's besieged country, setting up their own government at the end of a three-day battle.

In 2012, the platform committee of the Republican Party approved a call for an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would ban abortions. The GOP committee approved the same proposal in 2004 and 2008.

In 2013, a U.S. military judge sentenced Army Pfc. Bradley Manning to 35 years in prison for giving classified documents to the WikiLeaks whistle-blower site. Manning, with credit for time already served, would be eligible for parole in seven years.

A thought for the day: "A friend is someone who gives you total freedom to be yourself." -- Jim Morrison

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