August 21 in Pop Culture History

August 21st Fun Facts, Trivia and History

August 21st History Highlights

  • 1911 – The Mona Lisa was stolen by Vincenzo Peruggia, a Louvre employee. It was returned to the Louvre on January 4, 1914. Peruggia served six months in prison for the crime.
  • 1939 – 5 young African-Americans were denied library cards at the Alexandria, VA Library and arrested after sitting down and reading books. The civil disobedience was one of the earliest in the American Civil Rights Movement.
  • 1961Motown released what would be its first #1 hit, Please Mr. Postman by The Marvelettes.
  • 1986 – The Lake Nyos, Cameroon disaster resulted in the deaths of 1800 people when a volcano suddenly burst with a wave of carbon dioxide.
  • If you were born on August 21st,
    You were likely conceived the week of… November 28th (prior year)

Southampton Insurrection

Nat Turner’s Rebellion (aka Southampton Insurrection) was a rebellion of slaves that took place in Southampton County, Virginia, on August 21, 1831, led by Nat Turner. Fugitive enslaved people killed from 55 to 65 people, at least 51 were white. The rebellion was effectively suppressed at Belmont Plantation on the morning of August 23, 1831.

August 21st is…

Brazilian Blowout Day
Poet’s Day
Senior Citizens Day
Spumoni Day

August 21st Birthday Quotes

“Learn to deal with the valleys and the hills will take care of themselves.”
– Count Basie

“It is said that good things come to those who wait. I believe that good things come to those who work.”
– Wilt Chamberlain

“You don’t want to work on a job where you’re looking at your watch.”
– Stephen Hillenburg

” I’ve always said music should make you laugh, make you cry or make you think.”
– Kenny Rogers

” If you play a tune and a person don’t tap their feet, don’t play the tune.”
– Count Basie

” As a child, I’d help my mum cook, and it was ridiculous – she had the correct gadget or utensil for everything. ‘Stop! Don’t use that, I have exactly the right utensil.’ After I left home, I survived on cup-a-meals and never saw myself as being like her. Now I’ve become her.”
– Kelis

August 21st Birthdays

1754 – William Murdoch, Scottish engineer, and inventor, created gas-powered lighting (died in 1839)
1895 – Blossom Rock, American actress (died in 1978)
1904 – Count Basie, American pianist, composer, and bandleader (died in 1984)
1906 – Friz Freleng, American animator, director, and producer (died in 1995)
1916 – Bill Lee, American actor, and singer (died in 1980)
1936 – Wilt Chamberlain, American basketball player and coach (died in 1999)
1938 – Kenny Rogers, American singer-songwriter and actor (died in 2020)
1941 – Jackie DeShannon, American singer-songwriter
1943 – Hugh Wilson, American actor, director and screenwriter (died in 2018)
1952 – Joe Strummer, English singer-songwriter (died in 2002)
1956 – Kim Cattrall, English-Canadian actress
1961 – Stephen Hillenburg, American marine biologist, and animator, SpongeBob Squarepants (died in 2018)
1967 – Carrie-Anne Moss, Canadian actress
1979 – Kelis Rogers, American singer-songwriter
1988 – Kacey Musgraves, American singer-songwriter
1989 – Hayden Panettiere, American actress

August 21st History

1883 – An F5 tornado strikes Rochester, Minnesota, leading to the creation of the Mayo Clinic.

1888 – The first practical adding machine in the United States was patented (#’s 388,116-388,119) by William Seward Burroughs.

1911 – The Mona Lisa was stolen by a Louvre employee, Vincenzo Peruggia. It was returned in 1913.

1919 – Pearl Harbor Dry Dock officially opened.

1957 – The Soviet Union successfully conducted a long-range test flight of the R-7 Semyorka, the first intercontinental ballistic missile.

1959 – Hawaii becomes the 50th state

1961 – Motown released what would be its first #1 hit, “Please Mr. Postman” by The Marvelettes.

1979 – Soviet dancer Alexander Godunov defected to the United States.

1983 – Broadway Show – La Cage aux Folles (Musical) August 21, 1983

1992 – Ruby Ridge was the site of a deadly confrontation and siege in northern Idaho in 1992 between Randy Weaver, his family and his friend Kevin Harris, and agents of the United States Marshals Service (USMS) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). It resulted in the death of Weaver’s son Sammy, his wife Vicki, and Deputy U.S. Marshal William Francis Degan.

1994- HBO aired a concert special featuring Barbara Streisand and it was her first public concert in 27 years.

2004 – #1 Hit August 21, 2004 – September 10, 2004: Terror Squad – Lean Back

Today’s Random Trivia and Shower Thoughts

Biggest film of 1941: Sergeant York (Drama) earned ~ $16,000,000

Wade Boggs once Drank 64 Cans of Miller Lite on a Cross Country Flight and then Beat the Seattle Mariners the next day #goals #achievements

“I love the smell of napalm in the morning.” – Lt. Col. Bill Kilgore (Robert Duvall) in Apocalypse Now, 1979

The most common use for Q-tips is not recommended or advertised by the Q-tip makers whatsoever.

In 2015 a French court renamed a baby after the judge ruled that the parents’ decision to the name the child “Nutella” was not in the child’s best interest.

We used to make fun of my mother buying stuff from home on QVC. Now I do the same thing with Amazon.

Roulette Odds: numbers 25 to 36: Payoff: 2:1 True Odds: 31.58%

When does a joke become a dad joke?

When the punchline becomes apparent.

From 1908–1940, Sears sold 75,000 homes through their mail-order “Modern Homes” program. There were 447 different housing styles to choose from.

Who needs rhetorical questions?

More Pop Culture History Resources