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This day in history

Saturday, Aug. 31, is the 243d day of 2013. There are 122 days left in the year.

Today’s birthdays: Baseball Hall-of-Famer Frank Robinson is 78. Violinist Itzhak Perlman is 68. Singer Van Morrison is 68. Actor Richard Gere is 64. Olympic gold medal track and field athlete Edwin Moses is 58. Baseball pitcher Hideo Nomo is 45. Singer-composer Deborah Gibson is 43. Actor Chris Tucker is 41.

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In 1886, an earthquake with an estimated magnitude of 7.3 devastated Charleston, S.C., killing at least 60 people.

In 1888, Mary Ann Nichols, apparently the first victim of ‘‘Jack the Ripper,’’ was found slain in London’s East End.

In 1954, Hurricane Carol hit the northeastern Atlantic states, resulting in nearly 70 deaths.

In 1972, at the Summer Olympics in Munich, US swimmer Mark Spitz won his fourth and fifth gold medals, in the 100-meter butterfly and 800-meter freestyle relay; Soviet gymnast Olga Korbut won gold medals in floor exercise and the balance beam.

In 1973, movie director John Ford, 79, died in Palm Desert, Calif.

In 1991, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan declared their independence, raising to 10 the number of republics seeking to secede from the Soviet Union.

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