August 21 events in history

1140 Song Dynasty general Yue Fei defeats an army led by Jin Dynasty general Wanyan Wuzhu at the Battle of Yancheng during the Jin–Song wars
1192 Minamoto no Yoritomo becomes Seii Tai Shōgun and the de facto ruler of Japan. (Traditional Japanese date: July 12, 1192)
1331 King Stephen Uroš III, after months of anarchy, surrenders to his son and rival Stephen Dušan, who succeeds as King of Serbia
1680 Pueblo Indians capture Santa Fe from the Spanish during the Pueblo Revolt
1689 The Battle of Dunkeld in Scotland
1770 James Cook formally claims eastern Australia for Great Britain, naming it New South Wales
1772 King Gustav III completes his coup d'état by adopting a new Constitution, ending half a century of parliamentary rule in Sweden and installing himself as an enlightened despot
1778 American Revolutionary War: British forces begin besieging the French outpost at Pondichéry
1808 Battle of Vimeiro: British and Portuguese forces led by General Arthur Wellesley defeat French force under Major-General Jean-Andoche Junot near the village of Vimeiro, Portugal, the first Anglo-Portuguese victory of the Peninsular War
1810 Jean-Baptiste Bernadotte, Marshal of France, is elected Crown Prince of Sweden by the Swedish Riksdag of the Estates
1821 Jarvis Island is discovered by the crew of the ship, Eliza Frances
1831 Nat Turner leads black slaves and free blacks in a rebellion
1852 Tlingit Indians destroy Fort Selkirk, Yukon Territory
1863 Lawrence, Kansas is destroyed by Confederate guerrillas Quantrill's Raiders in the Lawrence Massacre
1879 The Virgin Mary, along with St. Joseph and St. John the Evangelist, reportedly appears at Knock Shrine in Knock, County Mayo, Ireland
1883 An F5 tornado strikes Rochester, Minnesota, leading to the creation of the Mayo Clinic
1888 The first successful adding machine in the United States is patented by William Seward Burroughs
1897 Oldsmobile, a brand of American automobiles, is founded
1911 The Mona Lisa is stolen by a Louvre employee
1914 World War I: The Battle of Charleroi, a successful German attack across the River Sambre which pre-empted a French offensive in the same area
1918 World War I: The Second Battle of the Somme begins
1942 World War II: The Guadalcanal Campaign: American forces defeat an attack by Imperial Japanese Army soldiers in the Battle of the Tenaru
1942 World War II: The flag of Nazi Germany is installed atop the Mount Elbrus, the highest peak of the Caucasus mountain range
1944 Dumbarton Oaks Conference, prelude to the United Nations, begins
1944 World War II: Canadian and Polish units capture the strategically important town of Falaise, Calvados, France
1945 Physicist Harry K. Daghlian, Jr. is fatally irradiated in a criticality accident during an experiment with the Demon core at Los Alamos National Laboratory
1957 The Soviet Union successfully conducts a long-range test flight of the R-7 Semyorka, the first intercontinental ballistic missile
1959 United States President Dwight D. Eisenhower signs an executive order proclaiming Hawaii the 50th state of the union. Hawaii's admission is currently commemorated by Hawaii Admission Day
1961 Motown releases what would be its first #1 hit, "Please Mr. Postman" by The Marvelettes
1963 Xá Lợi Pagoda raids: The Army of the Republic of Vietnam Special Forces loyal to Ngo Dinh Nhu, brother of President Ngo Dinh Diem, vandalizes Buddhist pagodas across the country, arresting thousands and leaving an estimated hundreds dead
1968 Nicolae Ceaușescu, leader of Communist Romania, publicly condemns the Soviet led Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia, encouraging the Romanian population to arm itself against possible Soviet reprisals
1968 James Anderson, Jr. posthumously receives the first Medal of Honor to be awarded to an African American U.S. Marine
1969 An Australian, Denis Michael Rohan, sets the Al-Aqsa Mosque on fire, a major catalyst of the formation of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation
1971 A bomb exploded in the Liberal Party campaign rally in Plaza Miranda, Manila, Philippines with several anti-Marcos political candidates injured
1976 Operation Paul Bunyan at Panmunjom, South Korea
1979 Soviet dancer Alexander Godunov defects to the United States
1982 Lebanese Civil War: The first troops of a multinational force lands in Beirut to oversee the Palestine Liberation Organization's withdrawal from Lebanon
1983 Philippine opposition leader Benigno Aquino, Jr. is assassinated at the Manila International Airport (now renamed Ninoy Aquino International Airport)
1986 Carbon dioxide gas erupts from volcanic Lake Nyos in Cameroon, killing up to 1,800 people within a 20-kilometer range
1991 Coup attempt against Mikhail Gorbachev collapses
1991 Latvia declares renewal of its full independence after the occupation of Soviet Union
1992 Ruby Ridge Standoff in Idaho
1993 NASA loses contact with the Mars Observer spacecraft
2001 NATO decides to send a peace-keeping force to the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia
2001 The Red Cross announces that a famine is striking Tajikistan, and calls for international financial aid for Tajikistan and Uzbekistan
2013 Hundreds of people are reported killed by chemical attacks in the Ghouta region of Syria