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August 9
In 1944, 258 black American sailors based at Port Chicago, Calif., refused to load a munitions ship three weeks after another ship exploded, killing 320 men, two-thirds of them black. The sailors were court-martialed, fined and imprisoned for their refusal.
In 1945, three days after the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Japan, the United States exploded the "Fat Man" A-bomb bomb over Nagasaki, killing an estimated 74,000 people and obliterating one-third of Nagasaki. The primary target of Maj. Charles Sweeney's Superfortress "Bock's Car" was Kokura on Kyushu, site of a huge military arsenal, but the city was shrouded by clouds. With the B-29's fuel supply running low, Sweeney headed for Nagasaki, a Kyushu shipping center, and a small rift in the clouds allowed the bombardier to drop the bomb. Elsewhere, planes from 20 American and British carriers attacked northern Honshu and Hokkaido, destroying 251 Japanese planes. A Japanese bomber damaged destroyer Borie. Battleships Alabama, Indiana, Massachusetts and cruisers Boston, Chicago, Quincy, St. Paul and British cruisers Gambia and Newfoundland blasted industrial plants at Kamaishi, Honshu.
In 1965, Singapore proclaimed its independence from the Malaysian Federation.
In 1969, actress Sharon Tate and four other people were found brutally murdered in Tate's Los Angeles home; cult leader Charles Manson and a group of his disciples were later convicted of the crime.
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The Year at a Glance


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