1492 – Christopher Columbus sails from La Gomera in the Canary Islands, his final port of call before crossing the Atlantic Ocean for the first time.
1522 – The Victoria, the only surviving ship of Ferdinand Magellan’s expedition, returns to Sanlúcar de Barrameda in Spain, becoming the first ship to circumnavigate the world.
1620 – The Pilgrims sail from Plymouth, England, on the Mayflower to settle in North America. (Old Style date; September 16 per New Style date.)
1803 – British scientist John Dalton begins using symbols to represent the atoms of different elements.
1847 – Henry David Thoreau leaves Walden Pond and moves in with Ralph Waldo Emerson and his family in Concord, Massachusetts.
1870 – Louisa Ann Swain of Laramie, Wyoming becomes the first woman in the United States to cast a vote legally after 1807.
1901 – Leon Czolgosz, an unemployed anarchist, shoots and fatally wounds President William McKinley at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York.
1916 – The first self-service grocery store, Piggly Wiggly, was opened in Memphis, Tennessee, by Clarence Saunders.
1943 – Pennsylvania Railroad’s premier train derails at Frankford Junction in Philadelphia, killing 79 people and injuring 117 others.
1962 – Archaeologist Peter Marsden discovers the first of the Blackfriars Ships dating back to the 2nd century AD in the Blackfriars area of the banks of the River Thames in London.
1970 – Two passenger jets bound from Europe to New York are simultaneously hijacked by Palestinian terrorists and taken to Dawson’s Field, Jordan.
1972 – Munich massacre: Nine Israeli athletes taken hostage at the Munich Olympic Games by the Palestinian “Black September” terrorist group die (as did a German policeman) at the hands of the kidnappers during a failed rescue attempt. Two other Israeli athletes were slain in the initial attack the previous day.
1983 – The Soviet Union admits to shooting down Korean Air Lines Flight 007 on September 1, stating its operatives did not know it was a civilian aircraft when it reportedly violated Soviet airspace. Korean Air Lines Flight 007 was a scheduled Korean Air Lines flight from New York City to Seoul via Anchorage, Alaska.
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1991 – The Soviet Union recognizes the independence of the Baltic states: Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
1997 – The Funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales takes place in London. Well over a million people lined the streets and 2.5 billion watched around the world on television.
2007 – Israel executes an air strike, Operation Orchard, to destroy a nuclear reactor in Syria.
1666 – Ivan V of Russia, Russian tsar (d. 1696)
1766 – John Dalton, English chemist, meteorologist, and physicist (d. 1844)
1888 – Joseph P. Kennedy Sr., businessman and diplomat, 44th United States Ambassador to the United Kingdom (d. 1969)
1921 – Norman Joseph Woodland, American inventor, co-created the bar code (d. 2012)
1944 – Swoosie Kurtz, American actress
1954 – Carly Fiorina, American businesswoman and activist
1511 – Ashikaga Yoshizumi, Japanese shogun (b. 1481)
1566 – Suleiman the Magnificent, Ottoman sultan (b. 1494)
1907 – Sully Prudhomme, French poet and critic, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1839)
1945 – John S. McCain Sr., American admiral (b. 1884)
1972 – Perpetrator and victims of the Munich massacre
Luttif Afif, Palestinian terrorist (b. 1945)
David Mark Berger, American-Israeli weightlifter (b. 1944)
Ze’ev Friedman, Polish-Israeli weightlifter (b. 1944)
Yossef Gutfreund, Israeli wrestling judge (b. 1931)
Eliezer Halfin, Russian-Israeli wrestler (b. 1948)
Amitzur Shapira, Russian-Israeli runner and coach (b. 1932)
Kehat Shorr, Romanian shooting coach (b. 1919)
Mark Slavin, Israeli wrestler (b. 1954)
Andre Spitzer, Romanian-Israeli fencer and coach (b. 1945)
Yakov Springer, Polish-Israeli wrestler and coach (b. 1921)
1994 – James Clavell, Australian-American director, producer, and screenwriter (b. 1924)
2007 – Luciano Pavarotti, Italian tenor (b. 1935)