Today is Friday, Aug. 24, the 237th day of 2012. There are 129 days left in the year.
Today in 1992, Hurricane Andrew smashed into Florida, causing $30 billion in damage and 43 U.S. deaths.
On this date:
In A.D. 79, long-dormant Mount Vesuvius erupted, burying the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum in volcanic ash; an estimated 20,000 people died.
In 1572, the St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre of French Protestants at the hands of Catholics began in Paris.
In 1814, during the War of 1812, British forces invaded Washington, D.C., setting fire to the Capitol and the White House, as well as other buildings.
In 2006, the International Astronomical Union declared that Pluto was no longer a planet.