updated 8/30/2007 12:04:18 AM ET 2007-08-30T04:04:18

Today is Thursday, Aug. 30, the 242nd day of 2007. There are 123 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:
Ten years ago, on Aug. 30, 1997, came reports of the car crash in Paris that claimed the lives of Princess Diana, Dodi Fayed and their driver, Henri Paul. (Because of the time difference, it was Aug. 31 when the crash actually occurred.)

On this date:
In 1797, the creator of “Frankenstein,” Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, was born in London.

In 1861, Union Gen. John C. Fremont instituted martial law in Missouri and declared slaves there to be free. (However, Fremont’s order was countermanded days later by President Lincoln).

In 1862, Union forces were defeated by the Confederates at the Second Battle of Bull Run in Manassas, Va.

In 1905, Ty Cobb made his major-league debut as a player for the Detroit Tigers, hitting a double in his first at-bat in a game against the New York Highlanders. (The Tigers won, 5-3.)

In 1945, Gen. Douglas MacArthur arrived in Japan to set up Allied occupation headquarters.

In 1963, the “Hot Line” communications link between Washington and Moscow went into operation.

In 1967, the Senate confirmed the appointment of Thurgood Marshall as the first black justice on the U.S. Supreme Court.

In 1983, Guion S. Bluford Jr. became the first black American astronaut to travel in space, blasting off aboard the Challenger.

In 1987, a redesigned space shuttle booster, created in the wake of the Challenger disaster, roared into life in its first full-scale test-firing near Brigham City, Utah.

In 1991, Azerbaijan declared its independence, joining the stampede of republics seeking to secede from the Soviet Union.

Ten years ago: Philip Noel Johnson, an armored car driver who had stolen $18.8 million, was arrested at the Texas border. (Johnson was later sentenced to 25 years in prison.)

Five years ago: With just hours to spare, baseball averted a strike; it was the first time since 1970 that players and owners had agreed to a new collective bargaining agreement without a work stoppage. Movie director J. Lee Thompson (“The Guns of Navarone”) died in Sooke, British Columbia, at age 88.

One year ago: Hurricane John lashed tourist resorts with heavy winds and rain as the dangerous Category 4 storm marched up Mexico’s Pacific coast. Actor Glenn Ford died in Beverly Hills, Calif., at age 90. Naguib Mahfouz, the first Arab writer to win the Nobel Prize in literature, died in Cairo, Egypt, at age 94.

Today’s Birthdays: Country singer Kitty Wells is 88. Opera singer Regina Resnik is 85. Actor Bill Daily is 80. Actress Elizabeth Ashley is 68. Actor Ben Jones is 66. Cartoonist R. Crumb is 64. Skier Jean-Claude Killy is 64. Actress Peggy Lipton is 60. Comedian Lewis Black is 59. Actor Timothy Bottoms is 56. Actor David Paymer is 53. Jazz musician Gerald Albright is 50. Actor Michael Chiklis is 44. Music producer Robert Clivilles is 43. Actress Michael Michele is 41. Country musician Geoff Firebaugh is 39. Country singer Sherrie Austin is 36. Actress Cameron Diaz is 35. Rock musician Leon Caffrey (Space) is 34. TV personality Lisa Ling is 34. Singer Rich Cronin (LFO) is 32. Rock musician Matt Taul (Tantric) is 29. Rock singer-musician Aaron Barrett (Reel Big Fish) is 27. Tennis player Andy Roddick is 25. Rock musician Ryan Ross (Panic! at the Disco) is 21. Actor Cameron Finley is 20.

Thought for Today: “Only great men may have great faults.” — French proverb.

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