Forthcoming historic anniversaries: August 2011

You might like to write about the following historic anniversaries. Dates are given 6 months in advance to allow you time for research and writing.

The list presented here is just a fraction of that available in The Date-A-Base Book 2011. For example, there are 57 anniversaries listed below, but 134 anniversaries for the same month in the book, which also covers the whole of 2011. The Date-A-Base Book 2012 is also available.

We have painstakingly cross-checked every entry, but you are advised to check all facts again as part of your research. Please let us know of any errors you find.

750 years ago (15 Aug 1261)
Michael VIII Palaeologus was crowned Byzantine emperor

750 years ago (29 Aug 1261)
Urban IV became Pope

300 years ago (11 Aug 1711)
The first horse race meeting at Ascot took place, initiated by Queen Anne

300 years ago (19 Aug 1711)
Birth of Edward Boscawen, ‘Old Dreadnought’, British admiral and politician

200 years ago (3 Aug 1811)
Birth of Elisha Graves Otis, American inventor of the safety elevator

200 years ago (31 Aug 1811)
Death of Louis-Antoine de Bougainville, French navigator and explorer

150 years ago (6 Aug 1861)
Britain annexed Lagos, Nigeria, making it a crown colony and halting the slave trade

150 years ago (6 Aug 1861)
Birth of Edith Roosevelt, American First Lady (1901-09), formalised the duties of the First Lady and refurbished the White House

150 years ago (10 Aug 1861)
American Civil War: Battle of Wilson’s Creek, Missouri

150 years ago (11 Aug 1861)
Birth of James Bryan Herrick, American physician and cardiologist who was the first to observe and describe sickle-cell anaemia and to identify coronary thrombosis as a cause of myocardial infarction (heart attack)

150 years ago (22 Aug 1861)
Death of Xianfeng, Emperor of China (1850-61)

100 years ago (6 Aug 1911)
Birth of Lucille Ball, American comedy star and actress (‘I Love Lucy’, ‘The Lucy Show’)

100 years ago (7 Aug 1911)
Birth of Nicholas Ray, American screenwriter and director (‘Rebel Without a Cause’, ‘The True Story of Jesse James’, and more)

100 years ago (10 Aug 1911)
British Members of Parliament voted to receive salaries for the first time

100 years ago (12 Aug 1911)
Birth of Cantinflas, Mexican actor, comedian, clown, acrobat, musician and satirist. Played Passepartout, in ‘Around the World in Eighty Days’

100 years ago (17 Aug 1911)
Birth of Mikhail Botvinnik, Russian chess player, international grandmaster, 3 times world champion

100 years ago (21 Aug 1911)
Leonardo da Vinci’s painting of the Mona Lisa was stolen from the Louvre in Paris by an employee. (Recovered in 1913)

100 years ago (29 Aug 1911)
Ishi, the last Native American to make contact with European Americans, was discovered in Oroville, California

90 years ago (25 Aug 1921)
The USA signed a peace treaty with Germany, formally ending the state of war that existed between them during WWI. This was in place of the Treaty of Versailles, which was not ratified by the U.S. Congress

80 years ago (2 Aug 1931)
Nobel Prize-winning German physicist Albert Einstein urged all scientists to refuse to do military work

80 years ago (24 Aug 1931)
British Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald resigned following the rejection of emergency cuts in spending during the economic crisis. With the Labour government in deadlock, King George V instructed MacDonald to form a new National Government – a coalition with the Conservatives and Liberals

75 years ago (1 Aug 1936)
The XI Olympic Games opened in Berlin, Germany. It was the last Olympics for 12 years due to World War II

75 years ago (1 Aug 1936)
Birth of Yves Saint-Laurent, Algerian-born French fashion designer

75 years ago (2 Aug 1936)
Death of Louis Blériot, French aviation pioneer, engineer and inventor, the first person to fly across the English Channel

75 years ago (14 Aug 1936)
The last public execution in the USA. Rainey Bethea was hanged for rape in Owensboro, Kentucky

75 years ago (15 Aug 1936)
Death of Grazia Deledda, Italian novelist, winner of the 1926 Nobel Prize for Literature

75 years ago (26 Aug 1936)
The Anglo-Egyptian Alliance Treaty was signed in Cairo, Egypt ending Britain’s occupation of Egypt

65 years ago (23 Aug 1946)
Birth of Keith Moon, British rock drummer (The Who)

60 years ago (1 Aug 1951)
Japan Airlines was founded

60 years ago (14 Aug 1951)
Death of William Randolph Hearst, American newspaper publisher and proprietor who built up the largest chain of newspapers in the USA

50 years ago (1 Aug 1961)
Six Flags Over Texas amusement park opened in Arlington, Texas, USA. It was the first park in the Six Flags chain

50 years ago (6 Aug 1961)
Soviet cosmonaut Gherman Titov spent an entire day (over 25 hours) in space, orbiting the Earth 17 times aboard ‘Vostok 2’. He was the first person to make more than a single orbit

50 years ago (13 Aug 1961)
East Germany sealed off the border between East and West Berlin to prevent the exodus of refugees to the West. Initially barbed wire fences were erected; construction of the Berlin Wall began on 15th August

50 years ago (26 Aug 1961)
The Hockey Hall of Fame opened in Toronto, Canada

40 years ago (9 Aug 1971)
Northern Ireland introduced internment – the power to detain suspected terrorists indefinitely without trial

40 years ago (15 Aug 1971)
U.S. President Richard Nixon officially ended the dollar’s link to gold

40 years ago (15 Aug 1971)
Bahrain declared its independence from the UK

30 years ago (1 Aug 1981)
MTV, the music television channel, was launched

30 years ago (5 Aug 1981)
U.S. President Ronald Reagan fired over 11,000 air-traffic controllers who refused to return to work after he had declared their strike illegal

30 years ago (12 Aug 1981)
IBM launched the Personal Computer (PC)

30 years ago (25 Aug 1981)
The U.S. space probe Voyager 2 reached Saturn and sent back images and data from the planet. (It travelled on to Uranus (1986) and Neptune (1989) before leaving the solar system)

30 years ago (30 Aug 1981)
Iranian President Mohammad-Ali Rajai and Prime Minister Mohammad Javad Bahonar were killed, along with three other government officials, when a bomb exploded during a defence council meeting in Tehran

25 years ago (31 Aug 1986)
Death of Henry Moore, British sculptor

20 years ago (6 Aug 1991)
The first ever website ( went live. The web’s inventor, Tim Berners-Lee, also posted a description of the World Wide Web project on the alt.hypertext newsgroup, and provided a link to download the first web browser, though it could only run on NeXT workstations

20 years ago (8 Aug 1991)
British journalist John McCarthy was released by Islamic Jihad in Lebanon after being held hostage for over 5 years

20 years ago (19 Aug 1991 to 21st)
Attempted coup in the Soviet Union. Hard-line members of the Communist Party tried to seize control from President Mikhail Gorbachev. The coup failed after just 3 days, and eventually led to the collapse of communism and the disintegration of the USSR

20 years ago (20 Aug 1991)
The following former Soviet states declared their independence this month: Estonia (20th), Latvia (21st), Ukraine (24th), Belarus (25th), Moldova (27th), Azerbaijan (30th), Kyrgyzstan (31st), Uzbekistan (31st)

20 years ago (24 Aug 1991)
Mikhail Gorbachev resigned as First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union

15 years ago (6 Aug 1996)
NASA reported that a meteorite found in Antarctica that was believed to have come from Mars showed possible signs of primitive life, including hydrocarbons, minerals and microfossils consistent with bacterial activity

15 years ago (23 Aug 1996)
Osama bin Laden issued a fatwa entitled ‘A Declaration of War Against the Americans Occupying the Land of the Two Holy Places’. At that time few people knew who he was, so the fatwa received little attention

15 years ago (28 Aug 1996)
Britain’s Prince Charles and Princess Diana were divorced. Princess Diana could no longer be addressed as Her Royal Highness but was to be known as Diana, Princess of Wales

15 years ago (30 Aug 1996)
British boxer Frank Bruno announced his retirement

10 years ago (6 Aug 2001)
U.S. President George W. Bush received a daily briefing warning that Osama bin Laden was determined to strike in the USA. (6 weeks before the September 11th terrorist attack)

10 years ago (6 Aug 2001)
Death of Dorothy Tutin, British stage, television and film actress

10 years ago (16 Aug 2001)
Princess Diana’s former butler Paul Burrell was charged with theft after reportedly stealing 342 items worth £5 million from her estate. (Charges dropped in November 2002 when the Queen came to his defence)

10 years ago (20 Aug 2001)
Death of Sir Fred Hoyle, English mathematician, astronomer and writer

10 years ago (25 Aug 2001)
Death of Aaliyah, American R&B and hip hop singer and actress


The Date-A-Base Book 2011

You’ll find lots more anniversaries in The Date-A-Base Book 2011, which covers the whole of 2011 and lists over 1,900 forthcoming newsworthy and notable anniversaries – more than twice as many entries per month than our standard list above. Over the course of the year you’ll get to hear about hundreds of anniversaries that other writers won’t know about, giving you a huge advantage!

The Date-A-Base Book 2011 is a terrific source of ideas for all writers, journalists, film-makers, editors, researchers, producers, teachers, students, speakers and event planners.
Click here for more details and the complete listing for January 2011

The Date-A-Base Book 2012 is also available and features more than 2,250 newsworthy and notable anniversaries which will occur during 2012.


Become a lifetime member of ideas4writers for just £49.95 and you’ll get The Date-A-Base Books for 2011 & 2012 (plus all future editions) as well as The Fastest Way to Write Your BookThe Fastest Way to Get Ideas, our complete 5,000+ writing ideas collection, unlimited use of our forums and writing engines, and much more (total value more than £157)


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