Today is the 227th day of 2017 and the 57th day of summer.
TODAY'S HISTORY: In 1483, the Vatican's Sistine Chapel was consecrated.
In 1914, the Panama Canal officially opened.
In 1947, India and Pakistan won independence from Britain.
In 1971, President Richard M. Nixon canceled the direct convertibility of the U.S. dollar to gold.
In 2003, Libya accepted responsibility for the bombing of a Pan Am airliner over Lockerbie, Scotland, in 1988, and agreed to pay reparations.
TODAY'S BIRTHDAYS: Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821), French emperor; Walter Scott (1771-1832), poet/novelist; Ethel Barrymore (1879-1959), actress; Edna Ferber (1885-1968), author; Julia Child (1912-2004), cookbook author/TV personality; Stieg Larsson (1954-2004), journalist/author; Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu (1963- ), filmmaker; Debra Messing (1968- ), actress; Ben Affleck (1972- ), actor; Carl Edwards (1979- ), race car driver; Jennifer Lawrence (1990- ), actress.
TODAY'S FACT: The price of gold skyrocketed from $35 per ounce in 1971 to $800 per ounce in 1980 as a result of the economic measures undertaken by President Nixon in 1971.
TODAY'S SPORTS: In 1948, Babe Didrikson Zaharias won the third women's golf U.S. Open, even after missing a 5-foot putt on the 18th hole.
TODAY'S QUOTE: "The rose is fairest when 'tis budding new, / And hope is brightest when it dawns from fears. / The rose is sweetest wash'd with morning dew, / And love is loveliest when embalm'd in tears." -- Walter Scott, "The Lady of the Lake"
TODAY'S NUMBER: 400,000 -- estimated number of concert-goers who attended the Woodstock Music and Art Fair when it opened near Bethel, New York, on this day in 1969.
TODAY'S MOON: Between last quarter moon (Aug. 14) and new moon (Aug. 21).