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Today in history: August 8

Celebrity birthdays, highlights in history, plus more facts about this day
/ Source: The Associated Press

Today is Monday, Aug. 8, the 220th day of 2005. There are 145 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:
On Aug. 8, 1974, President Nixon announced he would resign following new damaging revelations in the Watergate scandal.

On this date:
In 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte set sail for St. Helena to spend the remainder of his days in exile.

In 1876, Thomas A. Edison received a patent for his mimeograph.

In 1942, six convicted Nazi saboteurs who had landed in the United States were executed in Washington D.C.; two others received life imprisonment.

In 1945, President Truman signed the United Nations Charter.

In 1945, the Soviet Union declared war against Japan during World War II.

In 1963, Britain’s “Great Train Robbery” took place as thieves made off with 2.6 million pounds in banknotes.

In 1968, Richard M. Nixon was nominated for president at the Republican national convention in Miami Beach.

In 1973, Vice President Spiro T. Agnew branded as “damned lies” reports he had taken kickbacks from government contracts in Maryland, and vowed not to resign — which he eventually did.

In 1978, the United States launched Pioneer Venus II, which carried scientific probes to study the atmosphere of Venus.

In 1994, Israel and Jordan opened the first road link between the two once-warring countries.

Ten years ago: President Clinton, during a visit to Baltimore, ordered all companies doing business with the federal government to report the pollution they cause.

Five years ago: Vice President Al Gore formally introduced and celebrated his running mate, Sen. Joseph Lieberman, during an appearance in Gore’s home state of Tennessee. A bomb ripped through an underground walkway in central Moscow, killing at least 13 people. Chile’s Supreme Court stripped Gen. Augusto Pinochet’s immunity, clearing the way for the former dictator to be tried on human rights charges. (However, an appeals court later ruled Pinochet unfit to stand trial because of his deteriorating health and mental condition.)

One year ago: Alan Keyes, the Republican two-time presidential hopeful, threw his hat into Illinois’ Senate race (he ended up losing to Democrat Barack Obama). Actress Fay Wray, the damsel held atop the Empire State Building by the giant ape in the 1933 film classic “King Kong,” died in New York City at age 96.

Today’s Birthdays: Producer Dino DeLaurentiis is 86. Actress Esther Williams is 84. Actor Richard Anderson is 79. Joan Mondale (wife of former Vice President Walter F. Mondale) is 75. Actress Nita Talbot is 75. Singer Mel Tillis is 73. Actor Dustin Hoffman is 68. Actress Connie Stevens is 67. Country singer Phil Balsley (The Statler Brothers) is 66. Actor Larry Wilcox is 58. Actor Keith Carradine is 56. Rhythm-and-blues singer Airrion Love (The Stylistics) is 56. Country singer Jamie O’Hara is 55. Movie director Martin Brest is 54. Actor Donny Most is 52. Rock musician Dennis Drew (10,000 Maniacs) is 48. TV personality Deborah Norville is 47. Actor-singer Harry Crosby is 47. Rock musician The Edge (U2) is 44. Rock musician Rikki Rockett (Poison) is 44. Rapper Kool Moe Dee is 43. Rock musician Ralph Rieckermann is 43. Country singer Mark Wills is 32. Actor Kohl Sudduth is 31. Rock musician Tom Linton (Jimmy Eat World) is 30. Singer JC Chasez (’N Sync) is 29. Rhythm-and-blues singer Drew Lachey (98 Degrees) is 29. Rhythm-and-blues singer Marsha Ambrosius (Floetry) is 28. Actress Countess Vaughn is 27. Britain’s Princess Beatrice Elizabeth Mary is 17.

Thought for Today: “Men make counterfeit money; in many more cases, money makes counterfeit men.” — Sydney J. Harris, American journalist (1917-1986).