- 1913 – Harry Brearley invents stainless steel.
- 1918 – The first woman enlists in the United States Marines. After joining the Marine corps, Opha May Johnson, was assigned desk duty at the Marine Corps headquarters in Arlington, Virginia.
- 1940 – The Battle of Britain begins when the Germans start a series of attacks on British fighter bases and radar installations.
- 1942 – The Walt Disney movie “Bambi” premieres.
- 1960 – Central African Republic Gains its Independence From France. The landlocked African Country came under French rule in the late 19th century. On this day, Barthélemy Boganda, a nationalist politician declared the creation of an independent Central African Republic and became the first Prime Minister of the country.
- 1960 – First two-way telephonic conversation with a satellite. The conversation was made possible due to NASA’s Echo 1, a balloon satellite. It was launched into space on August 12. The satellite worked as reflector – signals sent to it were reflected back to the Earth.
- 1961 – The Berlin Wall came into existence after the East German government closed the border between east and west sectors of Berlin with barbed wire to discourage emigration to the West. The barbed wire was replaced by a 12 foot-high concrete wall eventually extending 103 miles (166 km) around the perimeter of West Berlin. The wall included electrified fences, fortifications, and guard posts. It became a notorious symbol of the Cold War. Presidents Kennedy and Reagan made notable appearances at the wall accompanied by speeches denouncing Communism. The wall was finally opened by an East German governmental decree in November 1989 and torn down by the end of 1990.
- 1976 – International lefthanders day is first celebrated.
- 1997 – South Park makes its debut on comedy central. The popular American animated series is created by Trey Parker and Matt Stone, and it follows the lives and adventures of 4 boys – Eric Cartman, Kenny McCormick, Kyle Broflovski, and Stan Marsh – in a fictional town called South Park, Colorado. While being popular, the show has attracted widespread criticism for profane language and for addressing controversial subjects.
- 1818 – Women’s rights pioneer Lucy Stone (1818-1893) was born near West Brookfield, Massachusetts
- 1860 – Annie Oakley (Sharpshooter and entertainer)
- 1899 – Alfred Hitchcock (Movie director)
- 1912 – Ben Hogan (Golfer)
- 1926 – Fidel Castro (Cuban dictator)
- 1951 – Dan Fogelberg (Singer)
- 1959 – Danny Bonaduce (Actor)
- 1969 – Midori Ito (Figure Skater)
- 1970 – Alan Shearer (English footballer)
- 1982 – Shani Davis (Speed Skater)
- 1983 – Sebastian Stan (Romanian/American actor)
- 1910 – Florence Nightingale (Italian/English nurse)
- 1946 – H. G. Wells (English author)
- 1995 – Mickey Mantle (American baseball player)
- 2004 – Julia Child (American chef, author)
- 2009 – Les Paul (American guitarist, songwriter, co-designed the Gibson Guitar)