What Happened on August 17

Significant Events

  • 1590 The Governor of Roanoke Island colony, John White, returns from England to find everyone in the colony has disappeared.
  • 1903 Joe Pulitzer donates $1 million to Columbia University & begins the Pulitzer Prizes in America
  • 1945 Sukarno and Mohammad Hatta declare Indonesia (Dutch East Indies) independent from the Netherlands
  • 1945 Korea is divided into North and South Korea along the 38th parallel
  • 1947 The Radcliffe Line, the border between Union of India and Dominion of Pakistan is revealed
  • 1998 Monica Lewinsky scandal: US President Bill Clinton admits in taped testimony he had an "improper physical relationship" with the intern and on the same day admits before the nation he "misled people" about the relationship
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Did You Know?

Projection in Paris of the very first animated cartoon, Fantasmagorie realized by Émile Cohl

On August 17, 1908

Famous Weddings

  • 1498 Cesare Borgia, son of Pope Alexander IV, 1st man to resign the cardinalate marries Charlotte d'Albret of Navarre
  • 1950 Short story writer Dorothy Parker (57) weds screenwriter Alan Campbell (46)
  • 1962 Actor Jack Lemmon (37) weds actress/model Felicia Farr (29) in Paris, France
  • 1964 Bruce Lee (23), Hong Kong and American martial artist and actor, weds Linda Emery (19), teacher
  • 1989 Director Kathryn Bigelow (38) weds fellow director James Cameron (35)

Famous Divorces

  • 2008 Genesis drummer and vocalist Phil Collins (57) divorces Swiss-born Orianne Cevey (35) after six years of marriage
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