31st August, on this day

1056 Byzantine Empress Theodora becomes ill, dying suddenly a few days later, without children to succeed the throne, ending the Macedonian dynasty.
1142 With the aid of Hiawatha and Deganawidah, The Great Peacemaker, the Iroquois tribes establish the Confederation of the Haudenosaunee.
1422 Henry VI, becomes King of England at the age of 9 months.
1535 Pope Paul III deposed and excommunicated King Henry VIII
1772 Hurricane destroy ships off Dominica
1778 British kill 17 Stockbridge indians in the Bronx during Revolution
1803 Lewis and Clark start their expedition from Pittsburgh at 11 o clock in the morning.
1864 Atlanta Campaign-Battle of Jonesborough
1876 Ottoman sultan Murat V is deposed and succeeded by his brother Abd-ul-Hamid II.
1886 1st major earthquake recorded in eastern US, at Charleston, SC
1887 Thomas A Edison patents Kinetoscope, (produces moving pictures)
1888 In London, Mary Ann 'Polly' Nichols, the first victin of Jack the Ripper, is found mutilated in Buck's Row in the East End.
1900 A new drink, Coca Cola first goes on sale in Britian
1907 England, Russia and France form the Triple Entente
1908 At the age of 60, and after a career spanning 43 years , the legendary English cricketer W.G. Grace retires from first class cricket. He had scored a total of 54,896 runs (including 126 centuries), taken 2,879 wickets and held 871 catches
1919 Communist Labor Party of America formed in Chicago
1919 Petlyura's Ukranian Army kills 35 members of a Jewish defence group
1920 Polish-Bolshevik War: A decisive Polish victory in the Battle of Komarów.
1920 First radio news program broadcast by station 8MK in Detroit, Michigan.
1936 Elizabeth Cowell, Britian's first female television announcer, makes her debut at the BBC studios at Alexandra Palace in north London
1935 In US, FDR signs an act prohibiting export of US arms to belligerents
1939 Nazi Germany mounts a staged attack on Gleiwitz radio station, giving them an excuse to attack Poland the following day, starting World War II in Europe.
1942 In Ternopil, western Ukraine, at 4.30 am, German SS organise the first deportation of Jews from Ternopil ghetto to death camp in Belzec, about 5,000 Jews were deported to face death in Belzec. When the Germans captured Ternopil, about 18,000 Jews lived in the city.
1943 The USS Harmon, the first U.S. Navy ship to be named for a black person, is commissioned.
1945 The Liberal Party of Australia is founded by Robert Menzies.
1948 Actor Robert Mitchum was arrested in a Hollywood drug raid. He would later be found guilty of criminal conspiracy to possess marijuana and was sentenced to 60 days in prison.
1954 Hurricane Carol (1st major named storm) hits New England, 70 die
1955 1st microwave TV station operated (Lufkin, Tx)
1955 1st sun-powered automobile demonstrated, Chicago, Ill
1957 Malaya (Malaysia) gains independence from Britain
1962 Independence for Trinidad and Tobago in the West Indies - having been in British possession since 1802
1962 Mountaineers Chris Bonington and Ian Clough become first Britons to conquer the north face of the Eiger
1963 Walter Cronkite began his stint as anchor of the CBS Evening News.
1968 6,000 die in 7.8 quake destroys 60,000 buildings in NE Iran
1968 Private Eye magazine reports a John Lennon and Yoko Ono album will have a picture of them nude on the cover
1968 West Indian cricketer Gary Sobers becomes the first batsman to score six 'sixes' in one over while playing for Nottinghamshire against Glamorgan at Swansea. The unfortunate bowler: Malcolm Nash
1969 25,000 attend New Orleans Pop Festival
1970 Lonnie McLucas, a Black Panther activist, convicted
1971 Dave Scott becomes 1st person to drive a car on the Moon
1972 Olga Korbut, USSR, wins olympic gold medal in gymnastics
1972 American swimmer Mark Spitz wins his fifth gold medal of the Munich lympics. By the end of the Gmes he has won a record 7 gold medals
1973 1st heavyweight championship fight in Japan (Foreman beats Roman)
1977 Aleksandr Fedotov sets aircraft altitude record of 38.26 km (125,524')
1978 Symbionese Liberation Army founders William and Emily Harris plead guilty to 1974 kidnapping of newspaper heiress Patricia Hearst
1979 Comet Howard-Koomur-Michels collides with the Sun
1980 Poland's Solidarity labour union founded
1983 The USSR shoots down a South Korean airliner killing all 269 passengers and crew on board
1985 Night Stalker suspect that terrorized S Calif captured in East LA
1986 Aeromexico Flight 498 jet and small plane collide kill 82
1986 Soviet passenger ship Adm Nakhimov, collides with a merchant vessel
1989 Buckingham Palace announces the separation of Princess Anne and Captain Mark Phillips
1991 Kyrgyzstan declares its independence from the Soviet Union.
1992 Pascal Lissouba is inaugurated as the President of the Republic of the Congo .
1993 HMS Mercury closes after 52 years in commission.
1994 The Provisional Irish Republican Army declares a ceasefire.
1997 Diana. Princess of Wales, Dodi Al Fayed and their driver Henry Paul are killed in a car crash in Paris - reportedly while their car was being chased by photographers
1998 North Korea reportedly launches Kwangmyongsong, its first satellite.
1999 The first of a series of Russian Apartment Bombings in Moscow, killing one person and wounding 40 others.
1999 A LAPA Boeing 737-200 crashes during takeoff from Jorge Newbury Airport in Buenos Aires, killing 65, including 2 on the ground.
2005 A stampede on Al-Aaimmah bridge in Baghdad kills 1,199 people.
2006 Stolen on August 22, 2004, Edvard Munch's famous painting The Scream was recovered from a raid by Norwegian police. The paintings were said to be in a better-than-expected condition.

31st August 2006

Donors make huge Lebanon pledge

Iran 'ignores nuclear deadline'

Stolen Munch paintings found safe

31st August 2007

Bush moves to ease lending crisis

Anti-Hamas rallies staged in Gaza

Mystery Congo fever kills 100

31st August 2008

New Orleans declares storm curfew

Mass anti-crime rallies in Mexico

Nasa 'reviews shuttle shelf-life'

31st August 2009

US 'needs fresh Afghan strategy'

Gun attack kills eight in Mexico

Disney to buy Marvel in $4bn deal

31st August 2010

Iraq 'independent' as the US combat operation ends

8 killed in Cancun bar attack

4 Israelis killed in West Bank

Birthdates which occurred on 31st August :

__12 Caligula (Gaius Caesar), 3rd Roman emperor (37-41 AD)
1811 Th‚ophile Gautier Tarbas France, writer/poet (Albertus)
1834 Amilcare Ponchielli Paderno Italy, composer (I Lituani)
1870 Maria Montessori Italy, educator (spontaneous response)
1880 Queen Mother Wilhelmina Netherlands (1890-1948)
1885 DuBose Heyward novelist (Porgy)
1889 A Provost Idell father of modern volleyball
1897 Frederic March Wisc, actor (Dr Jeckyll-Acad Awards 1932/1946)
19-- Noble Willingham Mineola Tx, actor (Cutter to Houston)
19-- Rick Porter actress (Another World)
1903 Arthur Godfrey radio, TV host (Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scout)
1903 Sir Bernard Lovell England, radio astronomer, founded Jodrell Bank
1905 Dore Schary producer/writer/director (Act 1, Boys Town, Big City)
1907 Ram¢n Magsaysay Phillipines, statesman (US Legion of Merit-1952)
1908 William Saroyan US, novelist/playwright (Time of Your Life)
1914 Richard Basehart Zanesville Oh, actor (Voyage to Bottom of Sea)
1916 Daniel Schorr broadcast journalist (CBS)
1918 Alan Jay Lerner lyricist composer (Lerner & Leowe-My Fair Lady)
1919 Richard Basehart actor (Voyage to Bottom of the Sea)
1924 Buddy (Leonard) Hackett Bkln, comedian (God's Little Acre, Music Man)
1928 James Coburn Laurel Nebr, actor (Our Man Flint, Magnificent Seven)
1930 Tiny Little Jr Worthington Minn, pianist (Lawrence Welk Show)
1931 Dan Rather news anchor (CBS-TV)
1931 Jean Beliveau hockey star (Montreal Canadiens)
1935 Eldridge Cleaver Black Panther turned Republican
1935 Frank Robinson baseball player/manager (MVP 1961-NL 1966-AL)
1937 Warren Berlinger Bkln, actor (Larry-Joey Bishop Shop, Take Two)
1940 Alain Calmat France, figure skater (Olympic-silver-1964)
1942 Carole Wells Shreveport La, actress (Pistols n Petticoats)
1945 Itzhak Perlman Tel Aviv Israel, violinist/polio victim
1945 Leonid I Popov cosmonaut (Soyuz 35, 40, T-7)
1945 Van Morrison Belfast, singer (Here Comes the Night)
1949 Richard Gere Phila Pa, actor (Breathless, Cotton Club)
1952 Rudolf Schenker heavy metal rocker (Scorpions-No One Like You)
1954 Tula [Barry Kenneth Cossey], Engld, transexual (For Your Eyes Only)
1957 Glenn Tilbrook guitarist/vocalist (Squeeze-Tempted)
1958 Edwin C Moses track star (hurdler, Olympic-gold-1984)
1959 Rachel Dennison Knoxville Tn, actress (Doralee Rhodes-9 to 5)
1961 David Chastain heavy metal rocker (Chastain-Rule of Wasteland)
1963 Reb Beach heavy metal rocker (Winger-17)
1970 Debbie Gibson Brooklyn NY, singer (Only in My Dreams)
1977 Paul Garber helped establish Air & Space Museum in Washington DC


Deaths which occurred on August 31st:
1057 Leofric husband of Lady Godiva, dies
1688 John Bunyan preacher/novelist/author of "Pilgrim's Progress,", dies
1879 William Barber 6th US chief engraver (1844-79), dies
1888 Mary Ann Nicholls a 42-year-old prostitute, was found stabbed to
death in London, 1st of at least five murders by Jack the Ripper
1963 George F Broque cubist painter, dies at 81 in Paris
1964 Carole Coleman singer (Face the Music), dies at 42
1964 Rocky Marciano former heavyweight champ, dies in a plane crash
1968 Dennis O'Keefe actor (Suspicion), dies at 60
1990 Nat (Sweetwater) Clifton NY Knick, dies at 65 of a heart attack