Today in History: August 15

Today in History: August 15

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1261

Constantinople falls to Michael VIII of Nicea and his army.

1385

John of Portugal defeats John of Castile at the Battle of Aljubarrota.

1598

Hugh O'Neill, the Earl of Tyrone, leads an Irish force to victory over the British at Battle of Yellow Ford.

1760

Frederick II defeats the Austrians at the Battle of Liegnitz.

1864

The Confederate raider Tallahassee captures six Federal ships off New England.

1872

The first ballot voting in England is conducted.

1914

The Panama Canal opens to traffic.

1935

American comedian and "cowboy philosopher" Will Rogers dies in an airplane accident, along with American aviation pioneer Wiley Post.

1942

The Japanese submarine I-25 departs Japan with a floatplane in its hold which will be assembled upon arriving off the West Coast of the United States, and used to bomb U.S. forests.

1944

American, British and French forces land on the southern coast of France, between Toulon and Cannes, in Operation Dragoon.

1945

Gasoline and fuel oil rationing ends in the United States.

1947

Britain grants independence to India and Pakistan.

1950

Two U.S. divisions are badly mauled by the North Korean Army at the Battle of the Bowling Alley in South Korea, which rages on for five more days.

1969

Over 400,000 young people attend a weekend of rock music at Woodstock, New York.

1971

US President Richard Nixon announces a 90-day freeze on wages and prices in an attempt to halt rapid inflation.

1986

Ignoring objections from President Ronald Reagan's Administration, US Senate approves economic sanctions against South Africa to protest that country's apartheid policies.

1994

Infamous terrorist Carlos the Jackal captured in Khartoum, Sudan.

1994

US Social Security Administration, previously part of the Department of Health and Human Services, becomes an independent government agency.

2001

Astronomers announce the first solar system discovered outside our own; two planets had been found orbiting a star in the Big Dipper.

2007

An earthquake of 8.0 magnitude kills over 500 and injures more than 1,000 in Peru.