31 BC - Roman Civil War: Battle of Actium - Off the western coast of Greece, forces of Octavian defeat troops under Mark Antony and Cleopatra.
1666 - Great Fire of London: A large fire breaks out in London in the house of Charles II's baker on Pudding Lane near London Bridge. The fire burns for three days destroying 10,000 buildings including St. Paul's Cathedral, but only 16 people are known to have died.
1752 - The United Kingdom adopts the Gregorian Calendar, nearly two centuries later than most of Western Europe.
1789 - United States Department of the Treasury was founded.
1862 - American Civil War: President Abraham Lincoln reluctantly restores Union General George McClellan to full command after General John Pope's disastrous defeat at the Battle of Second Bull Run.
1864 - American Civil War: Union forces under General William T. Sherman enter Atlanta, Georgia a day after the Confederate defenders fled the city.
1870 - Franco-Prussian War: Battle of Sedan - Prussian forces defeat the French armies and take emperor Napoleon III and 100,000 of his soldiers prisoner at Sedan.
1885 - In Rock Springs, Wyoming, 150 white miners attack their Chinese coworkers, killing 28, wounding 15, and forcing several hundred more out of town.
1898 - Battle of Omdurman - British and Egyptian troops led by Horatio Kitchener defeat Sudanese tribesmen led by Khalifa Abdullah al-Taashi, thus establishing British dominance in the Sudan.
1935 - Labor Day Hurricane of 1935: A large hurricane hit the Florida Keys killing 423.
1944 - Holocaust: Diarist Anne Frank and her family are placed on the last transport train from Westerbork to Auschwitz. They arrive three days later.
1945 - World War II ends: The final official surrender of Japan was accepted by General Douglas MacArthur and Admiral Chester Nimitz from a delegation led by Mamoru Shigemitsu, aboard the battleship Missouri in Tokyo Bay. But in Japan August 14 is well recognized as the final day of the Pacific War.
1945 - Vietnam declares its independence forming the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (North Vietnam).
1963 - CBS Evening News becomes network television's first half-hour weeknight news broadcast, when the show is lengthened from 15 to 30 minutes.
1967 - The microstate Principality of Sealand unilaterally declared its independence.
1987 - In Moscow, the trial of 19-year-old pilot Mathias Rust, who flew his Cessna airplane into Red Square in May 1987, begins.
1995 - Rock and Roll Hall of Fame opens in Cleveland, Ohio.
1998 - In Canada, pilots for Air Canada launch the first strike in company's history.
1998 - A McDonnell Douglas MD-11 airliner carrying Swissair Flight 111 crashes near Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia after taking off from New York City en-route to Geneva. All 229 people on board are killed.
1998 - A United Nations court finds Jean-Paul Akayesu, the former mayor of a small town in Rwanda, guilty of nine counts of genocide, marking the first time that the 1948 law banning genocide is enforced.
1850 - Albert Spalding, American baseball player and sporting goods manufacturer
1853 - Wilhelm Ostwald, German chemist
1866 - Hiram Johnson, former Governor of California and political activist
1877 - Frederick Soddy, British chemist
1884 - Dr. Frank C. Laubach, Christian missionary and founder of Laubach Literacy
1917 - Cleveland Amory, author
1923 - Rene Thom, French mathematician
1929 - Hal Ashby, film director
1948 - Christa McAuliffe, American teacher, astronaut
1948 - Terry Bradshaw, American football player
1951 - Mark Harmon, actor
1952 - Jimmy Connors, American tennis player
1961 - Carlos Valderrama, Colombian football player
1964 - Keanu Reeves, American actor
1965 - Lennox Lewis, Canadian/British boxer
1968 - Salma Hayek, Mexican actress
1764 - Revd Nathaniel Bliss, Astronomer Royal
1832 - Franz Xaver, Baron Von Zach, Scientific Editor, Astronomer
1834 - Thomas Telford, British civil engineer
1937 - Pierre de Coubertin, French founder of the modern Olympic Games
1953 - US General Jonathan Wainwright, Medal of Honor recipient
1964 - Alvin York, most decorated American soldier of World War I
1969 - Ho Chi Minh, president of North Vietnam
1973 - J. R. R. Tolkien, British writer
1992 - Barbara McClintock, American geneticist
1998 - Allen Drury, author
2000 - Curt Siodmak, science fiction author
2001 - Christiaan Barnard, South African heart surgeon
2001 - Troy Donahue, actor
September 1 - September 3 - August 2 - October 2 - more historical anniversaries
See Also: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December