updated 8/19/2005 12:03:28 AM ET 2005-08-19T04:03:28

Today is Friday, Aug. 19, the 231st day of 2005. There are 134 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:
Fifty years ago, on Aug. 19, 1955, severe flooding in the northeastern U.S. claimed some 200 lives.

On this date:
In 1812, the U.S.S. Constitution defeated the British frigate Guerriere east of Nova Scotia during the War of 1812.

In 1848, the New York Herald reported the discovery of gold in California.

In 1929, the comedy program "Amos and Andy," starring Freeman Gosden and Charles Correll, made its network radio debut on NBC.

In 1934, a plebiscite in Germany approved the vesting of sole executive power in Adolf Hitler.

In 1942, about 6,000 Canadian and British soldiers launched a disastrous raid against the Germans at Dieppe, France, suffering about 50-percent casualties.

In 1960, a tribunal in Moscow convicted American U-2 pilot Francis Gary Powers of espionage.

In 1974, U.S. Ambassador Rodger P. Davies was fatally wounded by a bullet that penetrated the American embassy in Nicosia, Cyprus, during a protest by Greek Cypriots.

In 1976, President Ford won the Republican presidential nomination at the party's convention in Kansas City.

In 1980, 301 people aboard a Saudi Arabian L-1011 died as the jetliner made a fiery emergency landing at the Riyadh airport.

In 1991, Soviet hard-liners announced to a shocked world that President Mikhail S. Gorbachev had been removed from power. (The coup collapsed two days later.)

Ten years ago: Three top U.S. diplomats heading to peace talks in Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina, were killed when their armored vehicle plunged off a muddy road and exploded.

Five years ago: Norwegian divers with video equipment went down to the sunken Russian submarine Kursk in a final attempt to find survivors trapped for a week, even though Russian officials said all 118 seamen aboard were probably dead.

One year ago: Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry fought back against campaign allegations that he had exaggerated his combat record in Vietnam, accusing President Bush of using a Republican front group "to do his dirty work." Google began trading on the Nasdaq Stock Market, ending the day up $15.34 at $100.34. Carly Patterson won gymnastics' premier event at the Olympics in Athens, becoming the first U.S. woman to win the all-around title since Mary Lou Retton in 1984.

Today's Birthdays: Actor L.Q. Jones is 78. Actress Debra Paget is 72. Tennis coach Renee Richards is 71. Actress Diana Muldaur is 67. Rock musician Ginger Baker (Cream, Blind Faith) is 66. Singer Johnny Nash is 65. Actress Jill St. John is 65. Actor and former U-S senator Fred Thompson is 63. Singer Billy J. Kramer is 62. Country singer-songwriter Eddy Raven is 61. Rock singer Ian Gillan (Deep Purple) is 60. Former President Clinton is 59. Tipper Gore, wife of former Vice President Al Gore, is 57. Actor Gerald McRaney is 57. Rock musician John Deacon (Queen) is 54. Actor Jonathan Frakes is 53. Actor Peter Gallagher is 50. Actor Adam Arkin is 49. Singer-songwriter Gary Chapman is 48. Actor Martin Donovan is 48. Actor Eric Lutes is 43. Actor John Stamos is 42. Actress Kyra Sedgwick is 40. Actor Kevin Dillon is 40. Country singer Lee Ann Womack is 39. TV reporter Tabitha Soren is 38. Country singer-songwriter Mark McGuinn is 37. Actor Matthew Perry is 36. Country singer Clay Walker is 36. Rapper Fat Joe is 35. Tennis player Mary Joe Fernandez is 34. Actress Erika Christensen is 23. Actor J. Evan Bonifant is 20. Rapper Lil' Romeo is 16.

Thought for Today: "Don't compromise yourself. You are all you've got." — Janis Joplin, American rock singer (1943-1970).

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