This day in history

Today is Thursday, Aug. 13, the 226th day of 2020. There are 140 days left in the year.

Birthdays: Former surgeon general Joycelyn Elders is 87. Actor Kevin Tighe is 76. Former Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen is 74. Opera singer Kathleen Battle is 72. High-wire aerialist Philippe Petit is 71. Hockey Hall of Famer Bobby Clarke is 71. Golf Hall of Famer Betsy King is 65. Movie director Paul Greengrass is 65. Actor Danny Bonaduce is 61. Actor John Slattery is 58. Actor Debi Mazar is 56. Former White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders is 38. Actor Sebastian Stan is 38.


In 1521, Spanish conqueror Hernando Cortez captured Tenochtitlan, present-day Mexico City, from the Aztecs.

In 1889, William Gray of Hartford received a patent for a coin-operated telephone.

In 1910, Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing, died in London at age 90.

In 1913, British metallurgist Harry Brearley developed an alloy that came to be known as “stainless steel.” (Although Brearley is often credited as the “inventor” of stainless steel, he was not alone in working to create steel that resisted corrosion.)

In 1961, East Germany sealed off the border between Berlin’s eastern and western sectors before building a wall that would divide the city for the next 28 years.

In 1967, the crime caper biopic “Bonnie and Clyde,” starring Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway, had its US premiere; the movie, directed by Arthur Penn, was considered shocking as well as innovative for its graphic portrayal of violence.

In 1989, searchers in Ethiopia found the wreckage of a plane that had disappeared almost a week earlier while carrying Representative Mickey Leland, Democrat of Texas, and 14 other people — there were no survivors.

In 1995, baseball Hall of Famer Mickey Mantle died at a Dallas hospital of rapidly spreading liver cancer; he was 63.


In 2003, Libya agreed to set up a $2.7 billion fund for families of the 270 people killed in the 1988 Pan Am bombing.

Last year, the warden at the New York federal jail where Jeffrey Epstein had taken his own life was removed, and two guards who were supposed to be watching Epstein were placed on leave while federal authorities investigated the death.