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Preview: Infoplease - This Day in History

Infoplease - This Day in History

Events from This Day in History from the Editors of Infoplease

Published: Thu, 17 Aug 2017 04:00:00 UTC

Copyright: Copyright 2017 Sandbox Networks, Inc.

August 17, 1807: Robert Fulton's steamboat, the Clermont, began its trip up the Hudson River to Albany.

August 17, 1863: Fort Sumter, S.C. was bombarded by Union ships during the Civil War.

August 17, 1896: Prospectors found gold in Alaska, a discovery that set off the Klondike gold rush.

August 17, 1945: Indonesian nationalists proclaimed independence from the Netherlands.

August 17, 1969: Hurricane Camille devastated the Gulf Coast, killing 248 people.

August 17, 1987: Rudolf Hess, Adolf Hitler's second in command, committed suicide.

August 17, 2008: U.S. swimmer Michael Phelps won his eighth gold medal, breaking the record set by Mark Spitz in the 1972 Games. Phelps also set the record for the most golds in a single Olympics.