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History's Happenings for August 1

Germany Declares War on Russia — WWI Begins!
1914

Germany's Kaiser Wilhelm II

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Birth of Francis Scott Key
1779

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First U.S. Census Completed
1790

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Colorado Admitted to Union
1876

Colorado state seal

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Sino-Japanese War Erupts Over Korea
1894

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Air Force Predessor Established
1907

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Berlin Games Open
1936

American sprinter Jesse Owens

When Adolf Hitler arranged for the 1936 Olympic Games to be held in Berlin, and for them to be carefully filmed and choreographed, he was counting on the German Herrenmensch, or superman, to hog the limelight.

Unfortunately things just didn't work out for him.

While there were certainly some excellent German athletes -- supermen or not -- and some outstanding competition, the real laurels went to America's own Jesse Owens, who won four gold medals. The fact that Owens was black no doubt made Hitler's views on race a bit harder to explain to his chums back at the party hall.

At the 1936 Olympics, Hitler refused to acknowledge Owens' gold medals in the 100-meter dash, the running broad jump, the 200-meter dash and as a member of the 400-meter relay team. The recordbook did not, as in the process of winning them he tied one Olympic record and set three new ones, along with a new world record in the 200-meter dash.

After the Olympics Owens finished his degree, and worked in both public relations and government, making goodwill trips overseas for the State Department. He also focused on helping kids develop athletic abilities, and wrote his autobiography, The Jesse Owens Story, in 1970. He died in 1980.

Warsaw Uprising Breaks Out
1944

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Atomic Energy Commission Established
1946

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U.S., Canada Create NORAD
1957

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