TODAY IN HISTORY
1782 A statue of Peter the Great is unveiled in St Petersburg on the 100th anniversary of his accession to the throne. It was made by French sculptor Etienne-Maurice Falconet, who spent 12 years on the work. Empress Catherine commissioned it in 1765. The photo shows a drawing by A P Davydov of the inauguration of the monument
William Cosby arrives in New York to assume his post as Governor for the New York Province.
French stuntman Philippe Petit repeatedly walks a tightrope strung between the twin towers of New York’s World Trade Center.
Gen George Washington creates the Order of the Purple Heart, a decoration to recognise merit in enlisted men and non-commissioned officers.
The US Department of War is established by Congress.
South American liberator Simon Bolivar defeats Spanish forces under Gen Jose Barreiro in New Granada (Colombia) at the Battle of Boyaca. The revolutionary army enters Bogota on August 10.
The famous feud between the Hatfields of West Virginia and the McCoys of Kentucky erupts into fullscale violence.
The Progressive Party nominates Theodore Roosevelt for President.
The already opened Peace Bridge connecting Buffalo, New York, and Fort Erie, Ontario, Canada, is officially dedicated.
US and other allied forces land at Guadalcanal, marking the start of the first major allied offensive in the Pacific during World War II. Japanese forces abandon the island the following February.
The United States launches the Explorer 6 satellite, which sent back images of Earth.
Congress passes the Gulf of Tonkin resolution, giving President Lyndon B Johnson broad powers in dealing with reported North Vietnamese attacks on US forces.
Apollo 15 returns to the Earth after a manned mission to the Moon.
A plane carrying US Representative Mickey Leland (Democrat-Texas) and 14 others disappears over Ethiopia. The wreckage of the plane is found six days later with no survivors.
President George H W Bush orders US troops and warplanes to Saudi Arabia to guard the oil-rich country against a possible invasion by Iraq.
Terrorist bombs at US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania kill 224 people, including 12 Americans.
Vice President and Democratic presidential candidate Al Gore selects Connecticut Senator Joseph Lieberman as his running mate; Lieberman becomes the first Jewish candidate on a major party’s presidential ticket.
Major league baseball players and owners agree on the sport’s first tests for steroids.
Barry Bonds becomes baseball’s career home run leader when he hit No. 756 during a home game in San Francisco, passing Hank Aaron’s mark.
Georgia shells the capital of breakaway republic South Ossetia. Russia responds by occupying much of Georgia in a five-day war.
Former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin accuses President Barack Obama of proposing a ‘death panel’ that would decide who receives treatment in his healthcare plan.
Elena Kagan is sworn in as the 112th justice and fourth woman to serve on the US Supreme Court.
1904 Ralph Bunche, the American diplomat who wins the Nobel Peace Prize in 1950, is born in Detroit, Michigan, United States