Today is Wednesday, Aug. 30, the 242nd day of 2006. There are 123 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On Aug. 30, 1862, Union forces were defeated by the Confederates at the Second Battle of Bull Run in Manassas, Va.
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 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 Supreme Court.
In 1983, Guion S. Bluford Jr. became the first black American astronaut to travel in space, blasting off aboard the Challenger.
In 1986, Soviet authorities arrested Nicholas Daniloff, the Moscow correspondent for U.S. News and World Report, and accused him of espionage. (He was later released.)
In 1991, Azerbaijan declared its independence, joining the stampede of republics seeking to secede from the Soviet Union.
In 1997, Americans learned 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.)
Ten years ago: President Clinton and Vice President Gore, fresh from their renominations at the just-concluded Democratic national convention in Chicago, set out with their wives on a bus caravan through America’s heartland. A commercial expedition to raise part of the sunken British luxury liner Titanic ended in failure as nylon lines being used to lift a 21-ton section of the hull snapped, sending the section back to the bottom of the North Atlantic.
Five years ago: Nikolay Soltys was captured hiding under a desk in his mother’s back yard in Citrus Heights, Calif., after a 10-day nationwide manhunt for the Ukrainian immigrant accused of butchering six relatives. (Soltys ended up committing suicide in his jail cell.)
One year ago: A day after Hurricane Katrina hit, floods were covering 80 percent of New Orleans, looting continued to spread and rescuers in helicopters and boats picked up hundreds of stranded people.
Today’s Birthdays: Country singer Kitty Wells is 87. Opera singer Regina Resnik is 84. Actor Bill Daily is 78. Actress Elizabeth Ashley is 67. Actor Ben Jones is 65. Cartoonist R. Crumb is 63. Skier Jean-Claude Killy is 63. Actress Peggy Lipton is 59. Comedian Lewis Black is 58. Actor Timothy Bottoms is 55. Actor David Paymer is 52. Jazz musician Gerald Albright is 49. Actor Michael Chiklis is 43. Music producer Robert Clivilles is 42. Actress Michael Michele is 40. Country musician Geoff Firebaugh is 38. Country singer Sherrie Austin is 35. Actress Cameron Diaz is 34. Rock musician Leon Caffrey (Space) is 33. TV personality Lisa Ling is 33. Singer Rich Cronin (LFO) is 31. Rock musician Matt Taul (Tantric) is 28. Rock singer-musician Aaron Barrett (Reel Big Fish) is 26. Tennis player Andy Roddick is 24. Actor Cameron Finley is 19.
Thought for Today: “It is easier to live through someone else than to become complete yourself.” — Betty Friedan, American feminist and author (1921-2006).