On This Day in History, August 3

In 1829, the Treaty of Lewistown was signed between the United States Government and members of the Shawnee and Seneca Tribes living near Lewistown, Ohio. The treaty offered them land west of the Mississippi River where other Ohio Senecas were already living, along with a cash advance for the sale of their land and the equipment they would need to move and settle their new land. They or their descendants would end up in Oklahoma.

In 1936, American athlete Jesse Owens won his first gold medal during the 1936 Olympic Games held in Berlin, Germany. He won the 100m dash with a time of 10.3 seconds, just beating out teammate and college friend Ralph Metcalfe (incidentally, Ralph was also African-American). As with his other gold medal wins at this Olympiad, Jesse wore a pair of shoes given to him by Adi Dassler, who would found Adidas after the Second World War.

In 1960, the Republic of the Niger in West Africa departed the French Community it had been part of since 1958 and became an independent nation. Since then, the nation has experienced five different constitutions and three periods of military rule over Niger. Since the most recent coup in 2010, Niger has become a multi-party democratic state.

A Notable Birth

1811 – Elisha Graves Otis (d. 1861) was an American engineer and industrialist. After a few attempts at owning his own mill, he eventually designed and built a safety brake initially for trains, but he would eventually modify his design for hoisting platforms. The system would eventually be applied to elevators.

A Notable Death

1877 – William Butler Ogden (b. 1805) was an American politician and railroad executive. He began in New York politics, but eventually moved west to Chicago. He became the city’s first mayor, and would later petition the government to gain approval and funding for the construction of the transcontinental railroad.

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