Today is Monday, Aug. 24, the 236th day of 2009. There are 129 days left in the year. On this date in 1814, during the War of 1812, British forces invade Washington, D.C., setting fire to the Capitol (which was still under construction) and the White House, as well as other public buildings.
In A.D. 79, long-dormant Mount Vesuvius erupts, burying the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum in volcanic ash; an estimated 20,000 people die. In 1572, the St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre of French Protestants at the hands of Catholics begins in Paris. In 1949, the North Atlantic Treaty comes into force. In 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signs the Communist Control Act, outlawing the Communist Party in the United States. In 1959, three days after Hawaiian statehood, Hiram L. Fong is sworn in as the first Chinese-American U.S. Senator while Daniel K. Inouye was sworn in as the first Japanese-American U.S. Representative. In 1970, a bomb planted by anti-war extremists explodes at the University of Wisconsin’s Sterling Hall in Madison, killing 33-year-old researcher Robert Fassnacht. In 1989, Baseball Commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti bans Pete Rose from the game for betting on his own team, the Cincinnati Reds.
August 24, 1984: The Labor Retirees of Trumbull County representing steel workers, auto workers and firefighters recommend against permanent renewal of Warren’s half-percent income tax.
The Packard Electric Division of General Motors is leasing space in the Dietrich Industries building on North River Road to house its new Drafting and Records Center.
Five leaders of the Outlaws Motorcycle Club, including the president from Struthers and a vice president who gave his address as the club’s headquarters on Hiram Street in Youngstown, are arrested by the FBI on drug charges.
August 24, 1969: Enrollment in Youngstown public schools is expected to drop by 900 to 26,000, while suburban enrollment is expected to increase by 1,400.
Automobile and truck sales in the 1969 model year will set a record of 11.6 million units, James A. Roche and Edward N. Cole of General Motors tell The Vindicator, and 1970 sales are expected to be at least as good.
August 24, 1959: Dr. Leonard Blum, Youngstown health commissioner, says an article in the American Medical Association’s monthly journal gives substantial support to public health officials seeking to eliminate pigeons from community life.
U.S. Rep. Michael J. Kirwan urges an intensive local campaign to push for approval of the $14 million West Branch dam that would improve the Mahoning Valley’s water resources.
Defending champion Rex Vrabel holds on with a closing round of 75 for a 236 hole total of 148, which was good enough to repeat as Mill Creek course golf champion.
August 24, 1934: Youngstown councilman Anthony Kryzan launches a drive to keep off the ballot a proposal that would increase membership on city council to 11.
Three men wearing dark glasses and carrying revolvers rob an unarmed mail truck driver near Pittsburgh and escape with $50,000 that was bound for the mills in Lyndora. State police say the license plates on the robbers’ two cars are registered out of Youngstown.