History of 12 August
1915 – “Of Human Bondage” by William Somerset Maugham was first published.
1918 – Regular airmail service began between Washington, DC, and New York City.
1937 – Red Skelton appeared on network radio for the first time on the “Rudy Vallee Show” on NBC.
1939 – “The Wizard of Oz” premiered in Oconomowoc, WI. Judy Garland became famous for the movie’s song “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” The movie premiered in Hollywood on August 15th.
1953 – The Soviet Union secretly tested its first hydrogen bomb.
1960 – The balloon satellite Echo One was launched by the U.S. from Cape Canaveral, FL. It was the first communications satellite.
1962 – The Soviet Union launched Pavel Popovich into orbit. Popovich and Andrian Nikolayev, who launched a day before, both landed on August 15.
1964 – Mickey Mantle set a major league baseball record when he hit home runs from both the left and ride sides of the plate in the same game.
1969 – The Boston Celtics were sold for $6 million. At the time it was the highest price paid for a pro basketball team.
1973 – Jack Nicklaus won his 14th major golf title. The win broke the record that had been held by Bobby Jones for 50 years.
1977 – The space shuttle Enterprise passed its first solo flight test.
1981 – IBM unveiled its first PC.
1986 – It was announced by NASA that they had selected a new rocket design for the space shuttle. The move was made in an effort at correcting the flaws that were believed to have been responsible for the Challenger disaster.
1986 – Rod Carew became the first player in the history of the California Angels franchise to have his uniform (#29) retired.
1988 – The movie “The Last Temptation of Christ” opened.
1992 – The U.S., Canada, and Mexico announced that the North American Free Trade Agreement had been created after 14 months of negotiations.
1993 – U.S. President Clinton lifted the ban on rehiring air traffic controllers that had been fired for going on strike in 1981.
1994 – Major league baseball players went on strike rather than allow team owners to limit their salaries. The strike lasted for 232 days. As a result, the World Series was wiped out for the first time in 90 years.
1998 – Swiss banks agreed to pay $1.25 billion as restitution to World War II Holocaust victims.
1999 – Hang Thu Thi Ngyuen shot an arrow from a bow with her feet on “Guinness World Records: Primetime” and hit a target that was 16 feet and 5 inches away.
2000 – The Russian nuclear submarine Kursk sank and its 118-man crew died during naval exercises in the Barents Sea.
2004 – The California Supreme Court voided the nearly 4,000 same-sex marriages that had been sanctioned in San Francisco earlier in the year.
2008 – Russia halted its five-day assault on Georgia.
2015 – At least two massive explosions kill 173 people and injure nearly 800 more in Tianjin, China.
2017 – Violence erupts at the Unite the Right rally between the Alt-right and counter-demonstrators, resulting in the death of one civilian, two police officers, and numerous additional injuries.
2018 – Thirty-nine civilians, including a dozen children, are killed in an explosion at a weapons depot in a rebel-held town in northwest Syria.
Celebrating Birthday Today
- 1981 – Tony Capaldi, Norwegian-Northern Irish footballer
- 1981 – Djibril Cisse, French footballer
- 1982 – Boban Grncarov, Macedonian footballer
- 1982 – Alexandros Tzorvas, Greek footballer
- 1983 – Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, Dutch footballer
- 1983 – Kléber Giacomance de Souza Freitas, Brazilian footballer
- 1983 – Manoa Vosawai, Italian rugby player
- 1984 – Bryan Pata, American football player (d. 2006)
- 1985 – Danny Graham, English footballer
- 1985 – Franck Moutsinga, German rugby player
- 1986 – Andrei Agius, Maltese footballer
- 1986 – Kyle Arrington, American football player
- 1987 – Vanessa Watts, West Indian cricketer
- 1988 – Tyson Fury, English boxer
- 1988 – Matt Gillett, Australian rugby league player
- 1989 – Tom Cleverley, English footballer
- 1989 – Hong Jeong-ho, South Korean footballer
- 1989 – Sunye, South Korean singer
- 1990 – Mario Balotelli, Italian footballer
- 1990 – Marvin Zeegelaar, Dutch footballer
- 1990 – Martin Zurawsky, German footballer
- 1991 – Jesinta Campbell, Australian model
- 1991 – Sam Hoare, Australian rugby league player
- 1992 – Cara Delevingne, English model and actress
- 1992 – Isabella Escobar, a Guatemalan tennis player
- 1992 – Jacob Loko, Australian rugby player
- 1992 – Teo Gheorghiu, Swiss pianist, and actor
- 1993 – Ewa Farna, Czech singer-songwriter
- 1993 – Luna, South Korean singer, actress, and presenter
- 1996 – Julio Urías, Mexican baseball player
- 1998 – Stefanos Tsitsipas, a Greek tennis player
- 1999 – Matthijs de Ligt, Dutch footballer