August 31 events in history

1056 After a sudden illness a few days previously, Byzantine Empress Theodora dies childless, thus ending the Macedonian dynasty
1218 Al-Kamil becomes Sultan of Egypt, Syria and northern Mesopotamia on the death of his father Al-Adil
1314 King Håkon V Magnusson moves the capital of Norway from Bergen to Oslo
1422 King Henry V of England dies of dysentery while in France. His son, Henry VI becomes King of England at the age of 9 months
1795 War of the First Coalition: The British capture Trincomalee (present-day Sri Lanka) from the Dutch in order to keep it out of French hands
1798 Irish Rebellion of 1798: Irish rebels, with French assistance, establish the short-lived Republic of Connacht
1803 Lewis and Clark start their expedition to the west by leaving Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at 11 in the morning
1813 At the final stage of the Peninsular War, British-Portuguese troops capture the town of Donostia (now San Sebastián), resulting in a rampage and eventual destruction of the town. Elsewhere, Spanish troops repel a French attack in the Battle of San Marcial
1864 During the American Civil War, Union forces led by General William T. Sherman launch an assault on Atlanta, Georgia
1876 Ottoman Sultan Murat V is deposed and succeeded by his brother Abd-ul-Hamid II
1886 An earthquake kills 100 in Charleston, South Carolina
1888 Mary Ann Nichols is murdered. She is the first of Jack the Ripper's confirmed victims
1895 German Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin patents his Navigable Balloon
1897 Thomas Edison patents the Kinetoscope, the first movie projector
1907 Count Alexander Izvolsky and Sir Arthur Nicolson sign the St. Petersburg Convention, which results in the Triple Entente alliance
1913 Police attack a union rally during the Dublin Lock-out, killing two people and injuring hundreds
1918 World War I: Start of the Battle of Mont Saint-Quentin, a successful assault by the Australian Corps during the Hundred Days Offensive
1920 Polish-Bolshevik War: A decisive Polish victory in the Battle of Komarów
1920 The first radio news program is broadcast by 8MK in Detroit, Michigan
1935 In an attempt to stay out of the growing turmoil in Europe, the United States passes the first of its Neutrality Acts
1936 Radio Prague, now the official international broadcasting station of the Czech Republic, goes on the air
1939 Nazi Germany mounts a staged attack on the Gleiwitz radio station, creating an excuse to attack Poland the following day thus starting World War II in Europe
1940 Pennsylvania Central Airlines Trip 19 crashes near Lovettsville, Virginia. The CAB investigation of the accident is the first investigation to be conducted under the Bureau of Air Commerce act of 1938
1941 World War II: Serbian paramilitary forces defeat Germans in the Battle of Loznica
1943 The USS Harmon, the first U.S. Navy ship to be named after a black person, is commissioned
1945 The Liberal Party of Australia is founded by Robert Menzies
1949 The retreat of the Democratic Army of Greece in Albania after its defeat on Gramos mountain marks the end of the Greek Civil War
1957 The Federation of Malaya (now Malaysia) gains its independence from the United Kingdom
1958 A parcel bomb sent by Ngo Dinh Nhu, younger brother and chief adviser of South Vietnamese President Ngo Dinh Diem, fails to kill King Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia
1962 Trinidad and Tobago becomes independent
1963 North Borneo (now Sabah) achieve a self governance
1965 The Aero Spacelines Super Guppy aircraft makes its first flight
1968 Garfield Sobers became the first batsman ever to hit six sixes in a single over of six consecutive balls in first-class cricket
1980 Flood in Ibadan after 12 hours of heavy downpour killed over 300 people and properties worth million destroyed
1980 After two weeks of nationwide strikes, the Polish government was forced to sign the Gdańsk Agreement, allowing for the creation of the trade union Solidarity
1982 Anti-government demonstrations are held in 66 Polish cities to commemorate the second anniversary of the Gdańsk Agreement
1986 The Soviet passenger liner Admiral Nakhimov sinks in the Black Sea after colliding with the bulk carrier Pyotr Vasev, killing 423
1986 Aeroméxico Flight 498 collides with a Piper PA-28 over Cerritos, California, killing 67 in the air and 15 on the ground
1987 Thai Airways Flight 365 crashes into the ocean near Ko Phuket, Thailand, killing all 83 aboard
1991 Kyrgyzstan declares its independence from the Soviet Union
1992 Pascal Lissouba is inaugurated as the President of the Republic of the Congo
1994 The Provisional Irish Republican Army declares a ceasefire
1996 Saddam Hussein's troops seized Irbil after the Kurdish Masoud Barzani appealed for help to defeat his Kurdish rival PUK
1997 Diana, Princess of Wales, her companion Dodi Fayed and driver Henri Paul die in a car crash in Paris
1998 North Korea reportedly launches Kwangmyŏngsŏng-1, its first satellite
1999 The first of a series of bombings in Moscow kills one person and wounds 40 others
1999 A LAPA Boeing 737-200 crashes during takeoff from Jorge Newbury Airport in Buenos Aires, killing 65, including two on the ground
2005 A stampede on Al-Aaimmah bridge in Baghdad kills 1,199 people
2006 Edvard Munch's famous painting The Scream, stolen on August 22, 2004, is recovered in a raid by Norwegian police