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This Day In History: Aug. 17

This Day in History

1807: Robert Fulton makes the first practical steamboat trip, leaving New York City on the Clermont; he reaches Albany in 32 hours.
1863: During the Civil War, Union forces begin shelling Fort Sumter in South Carolina.
1920: In baseball's only on-field fatality, Cleveland shortstop Ray Chapman dies a day after being beaned by NY Yankees pitcher Carl Mays.
1987: The last surviving Nazi convicted at Nuremberg, Rudolf Hess, commits suicide in a Berlin prison.
1998: In testimony provided to a grand jury, and in a televised address, Pres. Bill Clinton admits to having had an inappropriate relationship with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky.

Today's Birthdays

1786: Davy Crockett, frontiersman/adventurer/soldier (Hawkin's County, TN; died 1836)
1882: Samuel Goldwyn, film pioneer/producer (Warsaw, Poland; died 1974)
1887: Marcus Garvey, social reformer/black nationalist leader (St. Ann's Bay, Jamaica; died 1940)
1892: Mae West, actress (Brooklyn, NY; died 1980)
1913: W. Mark Felt, former top FBI official revealed in 2005 as "Deep Throat" Watergate informant (Twin Falls, Idaho)
1920: Maureen O'Hara, actress (Dublin, Ireland)
1923: Larry Rivers, artist (New York, NY; died 2002)
1924: Evan S. Connell, writer (Kansas City, MO)
1926: Jiang Zemin, Chinese President (Yangzhou, China)
1930: Ted Hughes, poet (Mytholmroyd, England; died 1998)
1932: V. S. Naipaul, writer (Port-of-Spain, Trinidad)
1943: Robert De Niro, actor (New York, NY)
1944: Lawrence J. Ellison, Oracle Corp. founder, CEO (New York, NY)
1952: Guillermo Vilas, tennis player (Mar del Plata, Argentina)
1958: Belinda Carlisle, singer and member of the Go-Gos (Hollywood, CA)
1959: Jonathan Franzen, writer (Western Springs, IL)
1960: Sean Penn, actor (Burbank, CA)

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