• On Aug. 4, 1892, Andrew and Abby Borden are found hacked to death in their home in Fall River, Mass. Daughter Lizzie Borden was arrested and charged with the double homicide, but was later acquitted, as local authorities didn’t trust fingerprint technology.
• On Aug. 6, 1911, Lucille Ball, destined to become one of America’s most beloved comic actresses, is born near Jamestown, N.Y. Her long career began in 1933 when she was hired as the Chesterfield cigarette girl and was featured in all the company’s advertisements.
• On Aug. 10, 1948, TV classic “Candid Camera,” produced and hosted by Alan Funt, debuts. The show featured unsuspecting people captured in their natural, bemused responses to comic setups. “Candid Camera” ran on network television from 1948 to 1950, again in 1953, and again from 1960 to 1967.
• On Aug. 7, 1959, the U.S. unmanned spacecraft Explorer 6 is launched into orbit around the Earth. The spacecraft transmitted a crude picture of the Earth’s surface from a distance of 17,000 miles. The photo took 40 minutes to transmit.
• On Aug. 8, 1974, President Richard M. Nixon announces his intention to become the first president in American history to resign. With impeachment proceedings under way against him for his involvement in the Watergate affair, Nixon was finally bowing to pressure from the public and Congress to leave the White House.
• On Aug. 5, 1981, President Ronald Reagan begins firing 11,359 air-traffic controllers striking in violation of his order for them to return to work. In addition, he declared a lifetime ban on the rehiring of the strikers by the Federal Aviation Administration.
• On Aug. 9, 1995, Jerry Garcia, lead singer of the Grateful Dead, dies of a heart attack just days after his 53rd birthday. Garcia helped form the psychedelic rock group in 1965 and toured with it for more than 30 years, developing a tremendously loyal fan following.
(c) 2008 King Features Synd., Inc.