Today in History
Today is Friday, Aug. 4, the 216th day of 2017. There are 149 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
On August 4, 1892, businessman Andrew Borden and his wife, Abby, were axed to death in their home in Fall River, Massachusetts. Lizzie Borden, Andrew's daughter from a previous marriage, was accused of the killings, but acquitted at trial.
On this date:
In 1782, composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart married Constanze Weber at St. Stephen's Cathedral in Vienna.
In 1790, the U.S. Coast Guard had its beginnings as President George Washington signed a measure authorizing a group of revenue cutters to enforce tariff and trade laws and prevent smuggling.
In 1792, English romantic poet Percy Bysshe Shelley was born at Field Place near Horsham, England.
In 1830, plans for the city of Chicago were laid out.
In 1914, Britain declared war on Germany for invading Belgium; the United States proclaimed its neutrality in the mushrooming world conflict.
In 1936, Jesse Owens of the U.S. won the second of his four gold medals at the Berlin Olympics as he prevailed in the long jump over German Luz Long, who was the first to congratulate him.
In 1942, the Irving Berlin musical "Holiday Inn," starring Bing Crosby, Fred Astaire and Marjorie Reynolds, and featuring the song "White Christmas," premiered in New York.
In 1944, 15-year-old diarist Anne Frank was arrested with her sister, parents and four others by the Gestapo after hiding for two years inside a building in Amsterdam. (Anne and her sister, Margot, died at the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.)
In 1964, the bodies of missing civil rights workers Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney were found buried in an earthen dam in Mississippi.
In 1977, President Jimmy Carter signed a measure establishing the Department of Energy.
In 1987, the Federal Communications Commission voted 4-0 to abolish the Fairness Doctrine, which required radio and television stations to present balanced coverage of controversial issues.
In 1991, the Greek luxury liner Oceanos sank in heavy seas off South Africa's southeast coast; the 402 passengers and 179 crew members all survived, largely through the efforts of ship's entertainers who oversaw rescue operations. (Capt. Yiannis Avranas and other officers faced criticism for leaving the ship while some passengers were still on board.)
Ten years ago: President George W. Bush toured the site of a collapsed highway bridge in Minneapolis, pledging to cut red tape that could delay rebuilding. Three students, Iofemi Hightower, Terrance Aeriel and Dashon Harvey, were shot to death execution-style in a Newark, New Jersey, schoolyard. (Six people have since been sentenced to long prison terms.) NASA launched the Phoenix Mars Lander, a robotic dirt and ice digger, toward the red planet (it arrived in May 2008). Barry Bonds tied Hank Aaron's 755 career home runs as his San Francisco Giants lost 3-2 to the San Diego Padres. Alex Rodriguez became at age 32 the youngest player in major league history to date to hit 500 home runs with a first-inning homer in a 16-8 Yankees victory over Kansas City.
Five years ago: Michael Phelps won the 18th Olympic gold medal of his career as the United States won the medley relay at the London Games. The United States set a world record to win the women's medley relay. Serena Williams beat Maria Sharapova 6-0, 6-1 to join Steffi Graf as the only women to complete the Golden Slam — winning the Olympics and the four majors. Three British athletes won gold medals in Olympic Stadium: Jessica Ennis in heptathlon; Greg Rutherford in men's long jump; and Mo Farah in the men's 10,000 meters.
One year ago: Speaking to reporters at the Pentagon, President Barack Obama vigorously denied that a $400 million cash payment to Iran was ransom to secure the release of four Americans jailed in Tehran. During a practice session on the eve of the Rio Olympics, South Korean gymnast Lee Eun-ju took a smiling selfie with North Korean gymnast Hong Un Jong in a warmly received scene captured by journalists.
Today's Birthdays: Actress-singer Tina Cole is 74. Actor-comedian Richard Belzer is 73. Football Hall of Famer John Riggins is 68. Former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is 62. Actor-screenwriter Billy Bob Thornton is 62. Actress Kym Karath (Film: "The Sound of Music") is 59. Hall of Fame track star Mary Decker Slaney is 59. Actress Lauren Tom is 58. Former President Barack Obama is 56. Producer Michael Gelman (TV: "Live with Kelly & Ryan") is 56. Retired MLB All-Star pitcher Roger Clemens is 55. Actress Crystal Chappell is 52. Author Dennis Lehane is 52. Rock musician Rob Cieka (Boo Radleys) is 49. Actor Daniel Dae Kim is 49. Actor Michael DeLuise is 48. Race car driver Jeff Gordon is 46. Rapper-actress Yo-Yo is 46. Country singer Jon Nicholson is 44. Rhythm-and-blues singer-actor Marques (MAR'-kus) Houston is 36. Actress Meghan Markle is 36. Actress Abigail Spencer is 36. Actress Greta Gerwig is 34. Country singer Crystal Bowersox (TV: "American Idol") is 32. Rock singer Tom Parker (The Wanted) is 29. Actors Dylan and Cole Sprouse are 25. Singer Jessica Sanchez (TV: "American Idol") is 22.
Thought for Today: "When you love someone, all your saved-up wishes start coming out." — Elizabeth Bowen, Irish author (1899-1973).