This Day In History

https://www.history.com
  • Michael Brown is killed by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri

    On August 9, 2014, police officer Darren Wilson shoots and kills Michael Brown, an unarmed Black teenager, in Ferguson, Missouri, a suburb of St. Louis. Protests and riots ensue in Ferguson and soon spread across the country. There are many different accounts of the incident, including the ...
  • Charles Manson cult kills five, including actress Sharon Tate

    On August 9, 1969, members of Charles Manson’s cult kill five people in movie director Roman Polanski’s Beverly Hills, California, home, including Polanski’s pregnant wife, actress Sharon Tate. Less than two days later, the group killed again, murdering supermarket executive Leno LaBianca and his ...
  • Henry David Thoreau’s “Walden” is published

    Henry David Thoreau’s classic Walden, or, A Life in the Woods is required reading in many classrooms today. But when it was first published—on August 9, 1854—it sold just around 300 copies a year. The American transcendentalist writer’s work is a first-person account of his experimental time of ...
  • JetBlue flight attendant quits job via escape slide

    On August 9, 2010, JetBlue flight attendant Steven Slater quits his job in dramatic style by sliding down his plane’s emergency-escape chute while the aircraft is stopped near the terminal gate at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport. Slater, who claimed his actions were prompted by the ...
  • Jesse Owens wins 4th gold medal

    At the 1936 Berlin Olympics, African American track star Jesse Owens wins his fourth gold medal of the Games in the 4×100-meter relay. His relay team set a new world record of 39.8 seconds, which held for 20 years. In their strong showing in track-and-field events at the XIth Olympiad, Jesse Owens ...
  • Romans routed at Adrianople

    In one of the most decisive battles in history, a large Roman army under Valens, the Roman emperor of the East, is defeated by the Visigoths at the Battle of Adrianople in present-day Turkey. Two-thirds of the Roman army, including Emperor Valens himself, were overrun and slaughtered by the mounted ...
  • Gerald Ford becomes president after Richard Nixon resigns

    In accordance with his statement of resignation the previous evening, Richard M. Nixon officially ends his term as the 37th president of the United States at noon on August 9, 1974. Before departing with his family in a helicopter from the White House lawn, he smiled farewell and enigmatically ...
  • The Great One gets traded

    On August 9, 1988, Edmonton Oilers center Wayne Gretzky is traded to the Los Angeles Kings along with Mike Krushelnyski and Marty McSorley in return for Jimmy Carson, Martin Gelinas and first-round draft picks in the 1989, 1991 and 1993 drafts. At age 27, Gretzky was already widely considered the ...
  • Nez Perce fight Battle of the Big Hole

    Having refused government demands that they move to a reservation, a small band of Nez Perce tribesmen clash with the U.S. Army near the Big Hole River in Montana. The conflict between the U.S. government and the Nez Perce was one of the most tragic of the many Indian wars of the 19th century. ...
  • Grateful Dead's Jerry Garcia dies

    Like his band the Grateful Dead, which was still going strong three decades after its formation, Jerry Garcia defied his life-expectancy not merely by surviving, but by thriving creatively and commercially into the 1990s—far longer than most of his peers. His long, strange trip came to an end, ...