October 8 is the 281st day of the year (282nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 84 days remaining until the end of the year.
Finnish calendar: Silent
Finnish - Swedish calendar: Peik
Orthodox calendar: Pelagia, Loan
Sámi calendar: Jaská
on older calendars: Amalia, Bruno, Charitas, Demetrius, Frank, Inkeri, Inko, Nils, Spes
451 - The Council of Khalkedon begins.
1600 - San Marino adopts a written constitution.
1771 - Vrouw Maria sinks in the outer archipelago of Nauvoo.
1852 - The Vianna boat canal is opened to traffic in Maaninga.
1856 - The Second Opium War begins.
1871 - A major fire in Chicago ignites, eventually destroying about 17,450 buildings, killing about 300 people and leaving nearly 100,000 people homeless.
1871 - A wildfire in six counties in Wisconsin kills more than 1,100 people.
1873 - The Hyvinkää – Karjaa line is opened to traffic.
1912 - The first Balkan war begins: Montenegro declares war on Turkey.
1918 - World War I: US corporal Alvin C. York kills 25 German soldiers with almost no help and captures 132 in the Argonne forest in France. The 1941 U.S. biographical film Sergeant York deals with the event.
1918 - In Finland, Parliament voted more than 2/3 in favor of a royal constitution over elections.
1939 - World War II: Germany annexes central Poland to form the Governor General.
1963 - A tsunami caused by an earthquake on the vault of Lake Vajont destroys the village of Fortogna, killing 1,910 people in the municipality of Longarone in the Veneto region of Italy.
1967 - Guerrilla Che Guevara and her troops are imprisoned in Bolivia.
1968 - Vietnam War: Operation Sealords. U.S. and South Vietnamese forces launched a new operation in the Mekong Estuary.
1970 - Vietnam War: The Vietnamese Communist Consultative Council rejects Richard Nixon's October 7 peace proposal in Paris as "a new ploy to mislead world public opinion."
1982 - Poland bans the Solidarity movement.
1991 - The Croatian Parliament severes all remaining ties with the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
1998 - Gardermoen Airport becomes Oslo's main airport after the closure of Fornebu.
1999 - American boxer Laila Ali takes her debut match.
2001 - Aviation: The twin-engine Cessna and SAS's MD-87 collide in a thick fog during take-off in Milan, killing 118 people.
2001 - US President George W. Bush announces the establishment of a new home security agency, the United States Office of Homeland Security. Tom Ridge was appointed head of the agency.
2003 - Danish Crown Prince Frederik and Australian lawyer Mary Donaldson announce their engagement.
2005 - An earthquake in South Asia kills more than 70,000 people.
1858 - Marie van Zandt, American soprano (d. 1919)
1871 - Hannes Ignatius, Finnish Lieutenant General (d. 1941)
1879 - Chen Duxiu, founder of the Chinese Communist Party (d. 1942)
1881 - Vincenzo Peruggia, Italian art thief (d. 1925)
1883 - Otto Heinrich Warburg, German physicist who won the 1931 Nobel Prize in Medicine (d. 1970)
1884 - Walter von Reichenau, German Marshal (d. 1942)
1889 - Eino Aaltio, Finnish politician and historian (d. 1974)
1890 - Edward Rickenbacker, American fighter pilot (c. 1973)
1895 - Juan Perón, President of Argentina 1946–1955 and 1973–1974 (d. 1974)
1895 - Zogu I, the only king of Albania (d. 1961)
1896 - Kaarina Lönn, Finnish poet (d. 1992)
1897 - Rouben Mamoulian, Armenian-American film director (Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde) (b. 1987)
1901 - Sir Mark Oliphant, Australian nuclear physicist (c.