Today is Saturday, Aug. 14, the 227th day of 2004. There are 139 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

One year ago, on Aug. 14, 2003, a huge blackout hit the northeastern United States and part of Canada; 50 million people lost power.

On this date:

In 1848, the Oregon Territory was established.

In 1917, China declared war on Germany and Austria during World War I.

In 1935, the Social Security Act became law.

In 1944, the federal government allowed the manufacture of certain domestic appliances, such as electric ranges and vacuum cleaners, to resume on a limited basis.

In 1945, President Truman announced that Japan had surrendered unconditionally, ending World War II.

In 1947, Pakistan became independent of British rule.

In 1951, newspaper publisher William Randolph Hearst died in Beverly Hills, Calif.

In 1962, robbers held up a U.S. mail truck in Plymouth, Mass., making off with more than $1.5 million.

In 1969, British troops arrived in Northern Ireland to intervene in sectarian violence between Protestants and Roman Catholics.

In 1973, the U.S. bombing of Cambodia came to a halt.

Ten years ago: Rain turned the final full day of Woodstock '94 in Saugerties, N.Y., into a mudbath. Eight children who were left alone died in an early morning house fire in Carbondale, Ill.

Five years ago: Republican presidential candidate George W. Bush won a convincing victory in the Iowa straw poll. Death claimed former AFL-CIO president Lane Kirkland at age 77, and Baseball Hall of Fame shortstop Pee Wee Reese at age 81.

One year ago: The chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, Roy Moore, said he would not remove a Ten Commandments monument from the state judicial building, defying a federal court order to remove the granite monument. Rebels lifted their siege of Liberia's capital.

Today's Birthdays: Pulitzer Prize-winning author Russell Baker is 79. Singer Buddy Greco is 78. Actress Alice Ghostley is 78. Singer Dash Crofts is 64. Rock singer David Crosby is 63. Country singer Connie Smith is 63. Former jockey Robyn Smith Astaire is 60. Comedian-actor Steve Martin is 59. Actress Susan Saint James is 58. Singer-musician Larry Graham is 58. Actor Antonio Fargas is 58. Author Danielle Steel is 57. "Far Side" cartoonist Gary Larson is 54. Rock singer-musician Terry Adams (NRBQ) is 54. Film composer James Horner is 51. Actress Jackee Harry is 48. Actress Marcia Gay Harden is 45. Former basketball player Earvin "Magic" Johnson is 45. Singer Sarah Brightman is 43. Actress Susan Olsen is 43. Rock musician Keith Howland (Chicago) is 40. Actress Emmanuelle Beart is 39. Actress Catherine Bell is 36. Actress Halle Berry is 36. Rock musician Kevin Cadogan is 34. Actor Scott Michael Campbell is 33. Actress Lalanya Masters is 32. Actress Mila Kunis is 21.

Thought for Today: "Nothing is so soothing to our self-esteem as to find our bad traits in our forebears. It seems to absolve us." - Van Wyck Brooks, American author (1886-1963).

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