What Happened in August 1961

Historical Events


Event of interestEvent of Interest

Aug 1 Australian cricket captain Richie Benaud takes 6 for 70 in England's 2nd innings for a 54 run 4th Test win at Old Trafford

Cricketer and Commentator Richie Benaud
Cricketer and Commentator
Richie Benaud
  • Aug 1 German DR limits traffic to West Berlin
  • Aug 1 New San Francisco Hall of Justice opens
  • Aug 1 Whitney Young Jr named executive director of National Urban League
  • Aug 2 The Beatles 1st gig as house band of Liverpool's Cavern Club
  • Aug 2 Cyrille Adula becomes premier of Congo
  • Aug 2 St Louis Cardinals (NFL) beat Toronto Argonauts (CFL) 36-7 in an exhibition game in Toronto, Canada
  • Aug 3 Pittsburgh Pirates rout the St. Louis Cardinals, 19-0, the largest lopsided shutout in NL history
  • Aug 4 Spokane, Washington reaches August record 108°F
  • Aug 4 28th NFL Chicago College All-Star Game: Philadelphia 28, All-Stars 14, 66,000 at Soldier Field
  • Aug 5 118°F (48°C), Ice Harbor Dam, Washington (state record)
  • Aug 5 Chicago Bears (NFL) beat Montreal Alouettes (CFL), 34-16 in a pre-season exhibition at Molson Stadium in Montreal
  • Aug 6 British racing driver Sterling Moss scores his 15th and final Formula 1 victory in the German Grand Prix at the Nürburgring
  • Aug 6 Gherman S. Titov is the 2nd Russian in space aboard Vostok 2 (17 orbits)
  • Aug 6 1st case of motion sickness in space reported
  • Aug 7 Cosmonaut Gherman Titov circles Earth for a full day in Vostok 2

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Aug 7 Soviet premier Khrushchev predicts USSR economy will surpass US

Soviet First Secretary Nikita Khrushchev
Soviet First Secretary
Nikita Khrushchev
  • Aug 8 Ham Tigercats (CFL) beat Buff Bills (NFL) 38-21 in Hamilton, Ontario
  • Aug 8 Verne Gagne beats Gene Kiniski in Minneapolis, to become NWA champ
  • Aug 9 James Benton Parsons is 1st African American to be nominated to a US Federal District Court
  • Aug 10 UK applies for membership of the European Common Market
  • Aug 11 Warren Spahn records victory #300, beats Cubs 2-1
  • Aug 13 Construction of the Berlin Wall begins in East Germany
  • Aug 14 Philadelphia Phillies lose 17th straight game
  • Aug 15 Keiyo Road is specified as the first driveway in Japan.
  • Aug 16 250,000 West Berliners demonstrate against East Berlin
  • Aug 16 Martin L King protests for black voting right in Miami
  • Aug 17 Kennedy administration establishes Alliance for Progress

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Aug 19 US vice-president Lyndon B. Johnson visits West Berlin

36th US President Lyndon B. Johnson
36th US President
Lyndon B. Johnson
  • Aug 20 Phillies set then dubious record of 23 straight loses, beat Braves
  • Aug 20 East Germany begins erecting 5' high wall along the border with the west to replace the barbed wire put up Aug 13
  • Aug 20 22nd Venice Film Festival: "Last Year at Marienbad" directed by Alain Resnais wins Golden Lion

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Aug 21 Kenyan political activist Jomo Kenyatta released from jail after 9 years. Imprisoned during 1952 Mau Mau rebellion with other nationalist leaders by British authorities

Founding Father of Kenya Jomo Kenyatta
Founding Father of Kenya
Jomo Kenyatta
  • Aug 22 Maris hits his 50th of 61 homers
  • Aug 23 Belgium sends troops to Rwanda-Urundi
  • Aug 23 East Germany imposed new curbs on travel between West & East Berlin
  • Aug 23 US lunar probe Ranger 1 reaches 190 km from Earth, falls back
  • Aug 24 Windward Islands' Airways International (Winair) forms
  • Aug 24 Former South African nazi leader Johannes Vorster becomes South Africa's minister of justice
  • Aug 25 Brazilian president Janio Quadros, resigns
  • Aug 26 Official International Hockey Hall of Fame opens in Toronto
  • Aug 27 Francis the Talking Mule is mystery guest on "What's My Line"
  • Aug 30 James Benton Parsons is confirmed as 1st African American judge of a US District Court
  • Aug 30 Last Spanish troops leave Morocco

Sports record brokenBaseball Record

Aug 30 Oriole Jack Fisher walks 12 LA Angels in a 9 inning game

MLB Pitcher Jack Fisher
MLB Pitcher
Jack Fisher
  • Aug 30 USSR says it will resume nuclear testing
  • Aug 31 Amsterdam National Ballet forms

Famous Birthdays

  • Aug 1 Andrew Nicholson, New Zealand equestrian 3 day event (Olympics 1996), born in Te Awamutu, New Zealand
  • Aug 1 Brad Faxon Jr, American golfer (8 PGA Tour titles), born in Oceanport, New Jersey
  • Aug 1 Danny Blind, Dutch soccer star (Sparta/Ajax), born in Vlissingen, Netherlands
  • Aug 1 Mark "Red" Mitchell, American actor (JFK, 8 Seconds, I Want to Live), born in Houston, Texas (d. 1994)
  • Aug 1 Mike Watkinson, English cricketer (England off-spinner all-rounder v WI 1995), born in Westhoughton, Lancashire
  • Aug 1 Imad Khamis, Syrian politician and 67th Prime Minister of Syria (2016-present), born in Saqba, Syria
  • Aug 2 Ed West, NFL tight end (Philadelphia Eagles, Atlanta Falcons)
  • Aug 2 Pete de Freitas, rock drummer (Echo & the Bunnyman), born in Port of Spain, Trinidad (d. 1989)
  • Aug 2 Cold 187um, American rapper (Above the Law)
  • Aug 3 Ken Wark, Australian field hockey fullback (Olympic 4th/silver-88, 92, 96), born in Sydney, Australia
  • Aug 3 Lee Rocker [Leon Drucker], American rock bassist (Stray Cats-Gonna Ball), born in Long Island, New York
  • Aug 3 Molly Hagan, American actress (Code of Silence), born in Minneapolis, Minnesota

Person of interestBarack Obama

Aug 4 Barack Obama, 44th United States President (Democrat: 2009-17) and first African-American president, born in Honolulu, Hawaii

44th US President Barack Obama
44th US President
Barack Obama
  • Aug 4 Lauren Tom, American actress
  • Aug 5 Athula Samarasekera, cricketer (Sri Lankan batsman)
  • Aug 5 Tawny Kitaen, actress (Bachelor Party, Witchboard), born in San Diego, California
  • Aug 5 Mark O'Connor, American violinist
  • Aug 6 Bruce Matthews, center/guard (Tennessee Oilers)
  • Aug 6 Carol Norman, Ardmore Oklahoma, bowler (LPBT Rookie of Year 1982)
  • Aug 6 Earl Winfield, CFL receiver (Hamilton Tiger Cats)
  • Aug 6 Mary Lou, Daniels Chicago lL, tennis star
  • Aug 7 Walter Swinburn, English jockey (The Derby winner, 1981), born in Oxford (d. 2016)
  • Aug 7 Yelena Davydova, Russian Canadian gymnast (Olympic gold 1980), born in Voronezh, Soviet Union
  • Aug 8 Bruce Matthews, NFL guard/center (Houston Oilers)
  • Aug 8 The Edge, [Dave Evans], rock guitarist (U2-I Will Follow), born in London, England
  • Aug 8 Daniel House, American music executive
  • Aug 8 Rikki Rockett, American drummer (Poison-Every Rose Has a Thorn), born in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania
  • Aug 9 Brad Gilbert, tennis star, born in Oakland, California

Person of interestJohn Key

Aug 9 John Key, New Zealand politician, Prime Minister (2008-2016), born in Auckland

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key
New Zealand Prime Minister
John Key
  • Aug 9 Amy Stiller, American actress
  • Aug 10 Beatrice Alda, American actress (Lisa-Four Seasons), daughter of Alan Alda
  • Aug 10 Jon Farriss, Australian rock vocalist/drummer (INXS-Kiss the Dirt)
  • Aug 11 Craig Ehlo, NBA guard (Atlanta Hawks)
  • Aug 11 Frederick W Sturckow, USMC capt/astronaut (sk: STS 88), born in La Mesa, California
  • Aug 12 Roy Hay, guitarist (Culture Club-Do You Really Want to Hurt Me)
  • Aug 12 Lawrence Hayward, English musician (Felt, Denim, Go Kart Mozart)
  • Aug 12 Mark Priest, New Zealand cricketer
  • Aug 13 Bettine Vriesekoop, Dutch table tennis star
  • Aug 13 Dawnn Lewis, actress (Jaleesa-Different World)
  • Aug 13 Neil Mallender, cricketer (England pace bowler in two Tests 1992)
  • Aug 13 Stuart Maconie, English music writer and broadcaster
  • Aug 13 Tom Perrotta, American novelist
  • Aug 13 Sunil Shetty, Indian Actor, Producer
  • Aug 14 Susan Olson, American actress (Cindy-Brady Bunch), born in Santa Monica, California
  • Aug 14 "Hot Stuff" Eddie Gilbert, American wrestler (d. 1995)
  • Aug 15 Matt Johnson, English singer-songwriter (The The), born in London, England
  • Aug 15 Ed Gillespie, American White House counsel to George W. Bush
  • Aug 15 Gary Kubiak, American football coach
  • Aug 16 Christian Okoye, American football player
  • Aug 17 Jamie Macoun, Newmarket, NHL defenseman (Toronto Maple Leafs)
  • Aug 18 John Viscardi, American actor (Father Tony-One Life to Live), born in NYC, New York
  • Aug 18 Bob Woodruff, American journalist, anchor
  • Aug 19 Danuta Bartoszek, Pyrzyce Poland, Canadian marathoner (Olympics 1996)
  • Aug 20 Linda Mantz, American actress (Frankie-Dorothy), born in NYC, New York
  • Aug 20 Rick Rael, heavy metal rocker
  • Aug 20 Greg Egan, Australian author
  • Aug 20 Joe Pasquale, English comedian
  • Aug 21 Danny Sheaffer, catcher (St Louis Cardinals), born in Jacksonville, Florida
  • Aug 21 Lance Earl Deal, American hammer thrower (Olympic silver 1996), born in Riverton, Wyoming

Person of interestStephen Hillenburg

Aug 21 Stephen Hillenburg, American animator and cartoonist (SpongeBob SquarePants), born in Lawton, Oklahoma (d. 2018)

Cartoonist and Voice Actor Stephen Hillenburg
Cartoonist and Voice Actor
Stephen Hillenburg
  • Aug 21 V. B. Chandrasekhar, Indian cricketer, born in Chennai, India
  • Aug 22 Debbi Peterson, rock drummer (Bangles-Eternal Flame), born in Los Angeles, California
  • Aug 22 John Kidd, American NFL punter (Miami Dolphins), born in Springfield, Illinois
  • Aug 22 Roland Orzabal, English musician and rock vocalist (Tears for Fears-Shout, Head over Heels), born in Portsmouth, Hampshire, England
  • Aug 23 Dean DeLeo, American guitarist (Stone Temple Pilots), born in Montclair, New Jersey
  • Aug 23 Alexandre Desplat, French film composer (The Grand Budapest Hotel), born in Paris, France
  • Aug 24 Colin Angus, Scottish pop musician (Shamen, Ebeneezer Goode)
  • Aug 24 Mark "Bedders" Bedfored, rock bassist (Madness), born in London, England
  • Aug 24 Ingrid Berghmans, Belgian judoka
  • Aug 24 Jared Harris, English actor
  • Aug 25 Billy Ray Cyrus, american country singer (Achy Breaky Heart), born in Flatwoods, Kentucky
  • Aug 25 Joanne Whalley, actress (Scandal), born in Manchester, England
  • Aug 26 Jeff Parrett,pitcher (St Louis Cardinals), born in Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Aug 26 Jimmy Olander, Palos Verdes Cal, singer (Diamond Rio-Meet in Middle)
  • Aug 27 Tom Ford, American fashion designer
  • Aug 28 Kim Appleby, English singer (Mel & Kim-Coming to America), born in Stoke Newington, London
  • Aug 29 Tony MacAlpine, American heavy metal rocker (Solo-Edge of Insanity), born in Springfield, Massachusetts
  • Aug 31 David Chastain, heavy metal rocker (Chastain-Rule of Wasteland)

Famous Deaths

  • Aug 2 Giovanni B Angioletti, Italian writer (I grandi ospiti), dies at 64
  • Aug 5 Eva JC Beck, actress (Elckerlyc, Resurrection), dies at 63
  • Aug 5 Sidney Holland, Prime Minister of New Zealand (National: 1949-57), dies at 67
  • Aug 6 Jozef E Van Roey, Flemish cardinal/archbishop of Mechelen, dies at 87
  • Aug 7 Frank Buchman, American theologist (Moral Re-Armament), dies at 83
  • Aug 8 Charlie Gemora, actor (who portrayed King Kong), dies at 58
  • Aug 8 Franc N D Buchman, US theology (Moral Rearms), dies at 83
  • Aug 8 Méi Lánfāng, Chinese opera performer (b. 1894)
  • Aug 9 Walter Bedell Smith, U.S. Army general (WWII) and head of CIA (1950-52), dies at 75
  • Aug 11 Antanas Škėma, Lithuanian writer actor and director (b. 1910)
  • Aug 13 Adeline De Walt Reynolds, actress (Son of Dracula), dies at 78
  • Aug 14 Clarke Ashton Smith, sci-fi author (Lost Worlds), dies at 68
  • Aug 14 Guido Alberto Fano, Italian composer and pianist, dies at 86
  • Aug 14 Henri-Edouard-Prosper Breuil, priest/archaeologist, dies
  • Aug 15 Willie Macfarlane, Scottish golfer (US Open 1925), dies at 72
  • Aug 16 Maulvi Abdul Haq, Pakistani scholar, Father of Modern Urdu, dies at 91
  • Aug 17 Carlos Leon Salzedo, composer, dies at 76
  • Aug 18 Learned Hand, Chief judge of US court of Appeals, dies at 89
  • Aug 18 Leonhard Frank, writer, dies at 78
  • Aug 20 Vilhjalmur Stefansson, Arctic explorer, dies at 82
  • Aug 20 Percy Williams Bridgman, American physicist (Nobel 1946 - physics of high pressure), dies at 79
  • Aug 28 Thomas Connolly, 1st baseball umpire elected to hall of fame, dies
  • Aug 30 Charles Coburn, American actor (Around the World in 80 Days, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes), dies at 84