On August 30th

The date of August 30th has brought the world so much. Classic books were published, famous authors were born and life-changing products were invented. Let’s look back at some of the incredible events that happened on this day.

August 30th Notable Events

1868: Publication of Little Women

On this date, the beloved children’s classic Little Women by Louisa May Alcott was first published. The August 30th publication featured the first volume in the serialized novel that told the story of four sisters during the time of the Civil War. Alcott’s sister, May, illustrated the first volume.

1901: Patent of Early Powered Vacuum Cleaner

On this day in 1901, British inventor Hubert Cecil Booth filed a patent for one of the first powered vacuum cleaners, which he called the Puffing Billy. Before his invention, vacuum clears worked by blowing air, not sucking. The original Puffing Billy wasn’t very practical to use; it was powered by a petrol engine pulled by horses outside the home. However, Booth later created a smaller vacuum that ran on electricity and changed the way we clean our homes.

1983: First African American in Space

On this day in 1983, Guion S. Bluford, Jr. became the first African American to travel into space. The Philadelphia-born NASA astronaut was a mission specialist on the space shuttle Challenger. Before his historic trip into space, Bluford had served as an Air Force pilot in Vietnam, for which he won several medals.

2001: Euro Currency Formally Introduced

While the euro was first introduced in 1999, it didn’t begin to replace local currencies until this date in 2001. The new euro currency brought a host of benefits, including making it easier to travel through Europe, but it’s not without controversy, such as smaller member countries feeling its use isn’t in their favor.

2013: India Launches Defense Satellite

Further establishing its place in the space market, India launched its first defense satellite on this date to enhance its navy’s surveillance capabilities. While it’s not the first satellite launched by India, GSAT-7 is the first one dedicated solely to military purposes.

Famous August 30th Birthdays

1797: Mary Shelley

Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, the author of Frankenstein, was born in London on this day in 1797. Shelley grew up in the unconventional household of her philosopher father, William Godwin, and eloped with poet Percy Bysshe Shelley when she was just 16 years old. She wrote many novels, but her most famous is Frankenstein, which some consider the first science-fiction novel.

1972: Cameron Diaz

Known for her long legs and megawatt smile, Cameron Diaz was born in San Deigo on this day in 1972. The California surfer girl got her start as a model but launched into acting to phenomenal success, starring in movie hits like The Mask, There’s Something About Mary and Charlie’s Angels.

Famous August 30th Deaths

1483: Louis XI, King of France

King Louis XI died on this day in Plessis-les-Tours, France. He was nicknamed the Spider King because of the webs of intrigue he cleverly spun, but he’s credited with strengthening and unifying France in the wake of the 100 Years’ War. With a reputation for being paranoid and reclusive, King Louis XI died from natural causes while isolated in his fortress in France.

2015: Wes Craven

Movie-goers will never look at Elm Street in their towns the same way again thanks to filmmaker Wes Craven and his A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise. Craven died on this day in Los Angeles after battling brain cancer.