What does Francis Scott Key, Martin Luther King Jr., and Samantha Smith all have in common? They’re all significant parts of August History. Find out more fun August History facts right here!
Happy birthday to Francis Scott Key (August 1, 1779), the author of the Star-Spangled Banner.
August 6 and 9, 1945, the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki saw the first atomic bombs used in warfare.
August 6, 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
August 9, 1974, Richard M. Nixon resigned the presidency as a direct result of the Watergate investigation.
August 16, 1896, the Great Klondike Gold Rush started when gold was discovered in Rabbit Creek, a tributary of the Klondike River in Alaska.
August 17, 1998, President Bill Clinton became the first sitting president to give testimony before a grand jury.
August 18, 1920, women were granted the right to vote when the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified.
August 25, 1985, a commercial airline crash killed 13-year-old Samantha Smith. In December 1982 Samantha Smith, then a 10-year-old American schoolgirl had written a letter to Soviet Russia’s leader Yuri Andropov asking, “Are you going to vote to have a war or not?” Andropov replied personally to her and offered a paid trip to the U.S.S.R. She toured Russia for two weeks. Samantha symbolized the hope for peaceful existence between America and Russia.
August 28, 1963, over 250,000 persons attended a Civil Rights rally that came to be known as The March on Washington. Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. made his now-famous I Have a Dream speech.