August 1961 in History

Events in History

  • 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 Cyrille Adula becomes premier of Congo
  • Aug 4 Spokane, Washington reaches August record 108°F
  • Aug 5 118°F (48°C), Ice Harbor Dam, Washington (state record)
  • Aug 6 1st case of motion sickness in space reported
  • Aug 6 Gherman S. Titov is the 2nd Russian in space aboard Vostok 2 (17 orbits)
  • Aug 7 Cosmonaut Gherman Titov circles Earth for a full day in Vostok 2

Event of Interest

Aug 7 Soviet premier Khrushchev predicts USSR economy will surpass US

  • 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 13 Construction of the Berlin Wall begins in East Germany
  • Aug 15 Keiyo Road is specified as the first driveway in Japan
  • Aug 16 250,000 West Berliners demonstrate against the division of East Berlin

Event of Interest

Aug 16 Martin Luther King Jr. protests for black voting rights in Miami, Florida

  • Aug 17 Kennedy administration establishes Alliance for Progress

Event of Interest

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

  • Aug 20 East Germany begins erecting 5' high wall along the border with the west to replace the barbed wire put up Aug 13

Kenyatta Freed from Jail

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

  • 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 Former South African nazi leader Johannes Vorster becomes South Africa's minister of justice
  • Aug 24 Windward Islands' Airways International (Winair) forms
  • Aug 25 Brazilian president Janio Quadros, resigns
  • 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
  • Aug 30 USSR says it will resume nuclear testing
  • Aug 31 Amsterdam National Ballet forms

Birthdays in History

  • Aug 1 Ed Gillespie, American White House counsel to George W. Bush, born in Mount Holly, New Jersey
  • Aug 1 Imad Khamis, Syrian politician and 67th Prime Minister of Syria (2016-present), born in Saqba, Syria

Barack Obama (62 years old)

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

  • Aug 6 Carol Norman, Ardmore Oklahoma, bowler (LPBT Rookie of Year 1982)
  • Aug 8 Ron Klain, American attorney, White House Chief of Staff to Joe Biden (2021-), born in Indianapolis, Indiana

John Key (62 years old)

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

  • Aug 11 Frederick W Sturckow, USMC capt/astronaut (sk: STS 88), born in La Mesa, California
  • Aug 13 Tom Perrotta, American novelist (Little Children), born in Newark, New Jersey
  • Aug 18 Bob Woodruff, American television journalist, born in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
  • Aug 20 Greg Egan, Australian science fiction and hard science author, born in Perth, Australia
  • Aug 27 Tom Ford, American fashion designer, born in Austin, Texas

Deaths in History

  • Aug 2 Giovanni Battista Angioletti, Italian author (Il giorno del giudizio), dies at 64
  • Aug 5 Sidney Holland, Prime Minister of New Zealand (National: 1949-57), dies at 67
  • Aug 6 Jozef-Ernest van Roey, Belgian cardinal (opposed Nazism as Archbishop of Mechelen), dies at 87
  • Aug 7 Frank Buchman, American theologist (Moral Re-Armament), dies at 83
  • Aug 8 Franc N D Buchman, US theology (Moral Rearms), dies at 83
  • Aug 9 Walter Bedell Smith, U.S. Army general (WWII) and head of CIA (1950-52), dies at 75
  • Aug 14 Clarke Ashton Smith, American sci-fi author (Lost Worlds), dies at 68
  • Aug 14 Henri-Edouard-Prosper Breuil, priest/archaeologist, dies
  • Aug 16 Maulvi Abdul Haq, Pakistani scholar and father of Modern Urdu, dies at 91
  • Aug 18 Learned Hand, American Chief Judge of US Court of Appeals, dies at 89
  • Aug 18 Leonhard Frank, writer, dies at 78
  • Aug 20 Percy Williams Bridgman, American physicist (Nobel 1946 - physics of high pressure), dies at 79
  • Aug 20 Vilhjalmur Stefansson, Canadian-American Arctic explorer and ethnologist, dies at 82