Today in History

Published 12:01 am Saturday, August 4, 2018

Today is Saturday, Aug. 4, the 216th day of 2018. There are 149 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On August 4, 1944, 15-year-old diarist Anne Frank was arrested with her sister, parents and four others by the Gestapo after hiding for two years inside a building in Amsterdam. (Anne and her sister, Margot, died at the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.)

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On this date:

In 1735, a jury found John Peter Zenger of the New York Weekly Journal not guilty of committing seditious libel against the colonial governor of New York, William Cosby.

In 1790, the U.S. Coast Guard had its beginnings as President George Washington signed a measure authorizing a group of revenue cutters to enforce tariff and trade laws and prevent smuggling.

In 1830, plans for the city of Chicago were laid out.

In 1892, businessman Andrew Borden and his wife, Abby, were axed to death in their home in Fall River, Massachusetts. Lizzie Borden, Andrew’s daughter from a previous marriage, was accused of the killings, but acquitted at trial.

In 1914, Britain declared war on Germany for invading Belgium; the United States proclaimed its neutrality in the mushrooming world conflict.

In 1936, Jesse Owens of the U.S. won the second of his four gold medals at the Berlin Olympics as he prevailed in the long jump over German Luz Long, who was the first to congratulate him.

In 1964, the bodies of missing civil rights workers Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman and James Chaney were found buried in an earthen dam in Mississippi.

In 1972, Arthur Bremer was convicted and sentenced in Upper Marlboro, Md., to 63 years in prison for his attempt on the life of Alabama Gov. George C. Wallace (the sentence was later reduced to 53 years; Bremer was released from prison in 2007).

In 1977, President Jimmy Carter signed a measure establishing the Department of Energy.

In 1987, the Federal Communications Commission voted 4-0 to abolish the Fairness Doctrine, which required radio and television stations to present balanced coverage of controversial issues.

In 1993, a federal judge sentenced Los Angeles police officers Stacey Koon and Laurence Powell to 2 1/2 years in prison for violating Rodney King’s civil rights.

In 2009, North Korean leader Kim Jong Il pardoned American journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee for entering the country illegally and ordered their release during a surprise visit by former U.S. President Bill Clinton.

Ten years ago: President George W. Bush signed legislation allowing the State Department to settle all remaining lawsuits against Libya by American victims of terrorism. In a brazen attack just days ahead of the Beijing Olympics, two men from a mainly Muslim ethnic group rammed a truck and hurled explosives at jogging policemen in western China, killing 16.

Five years ago: Security forces closed roads, put up extra blast walls and increased patrols near some of the more than 20 U.S. diplomatic missions in the Muslim world that Washington had ordered closed for the weekend following warnings of a possible al-Qaida attack. Missy Franklin claimed her record sixth gold medal on the final day of the world championships in Barcelona, becoming the most successful female swimmer ever at a world meet. American Stacy Lewis won the Women’s British Open, finishing with a pair of birdies and closing with an even-par 72. Pro Football Hall of Famer Art Donovan, 89, died in Baltimore.

One year ago: Former pharmaceutical CEO Martin Shkreli, who became notorious for a price-gouging scandal, was convicted on federal charges that he deceived investors in a pair of failed hedge funds. (Shkreli was sentenced months later to seven years in prison.) President Donald Trump left Washington for a 2 ½ week trip to his private golf club in central New Jersey and his home at New York City’s Trump Tower; the president described it as a “working vacation.” The unemployment rate ticked down to 4.3 percent, matching the 16-year low that had been recorded in May, as employers added 209,000 jobs.

Today’s Birthdays: Actress-singer Tina Cole is 75. Actor-comedian Richard Belzer is 74. Football Hall of Famer John Riggins is 69. Former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is 63. Actor-screenwriter Billy Bob Thornton is 63. Actress Kym Karath (Film: “The Sound of Music”) is 60. Hall of Fame track star Mary Decker Slaney is 60. Actress Lauren Tom is 59. Former President Barack Obama is 57. Producer Michael Gelman (TV: “Live with Kelly & Ryan”) is 57. Retired MLB All-Star pitcher Roger Clemens is 56. Actress Crystal Chappell is 53. Author Dennis Lehane is 53. Rock musician Rob Cieka (Boo Radleys) is 50. Actor Daniel Dae Kim is 50. Actor Michael DeLuise is 49. Race car driver Jeff Gordon is 47. Rapper-actress Yo-Yo is 47. Country singer Jon Nicholson is 45. Rhythm-and-blues singer-actor Marques (MAR’-kus) Houston is 37. Britain’s Duchess of Sussex, the former actress Meghan Markle, is 37. Actress Abigail Spencer is 37. Actress Greta Gerwig is 35. Country singer Crystal Bowersox (TV: “American Idol”) is 33. Rock singer Tom Parker (The Wanted) is 30. Actors Dylan and Cole Sprouse are 26. Singer Jessica Sanchez (TV: “American Idol”) is 23.