Today is Monday, July 7, the 189th day of 2008 with 177 to follow.
The moon is waxing. The morning stars are Neptune, Mercury, Jupiter and Uranus. The evening stars are Venus, Mars and Saturn.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Cancer. They include composer Gustav Mahler in 1860; painter Marc Chagall in 1887; film director George Cukor in 1899; film director Vittorio De Sica in 1901; baseball pitcher Leroy "Satchel" Paige and zither player Anton Karas ("The Third Man") in 1906; science fiction author Robert Heinlein in 1907; composer Gian Carlo Menotti in 1911; Chicago 7 defense lawyer William Kunstler in 1919; Ezzard Charles, heavyweight boxing champion, in 1921; French fashion designer Pierre Cardin in 1922 (age 86); bandleader Doc Severinsen in 1927 (age 81); singer Mary Ford in 1924; former Beatle Ringo Starr in 1940 (age 68); actors Shelley Duvall in 1949 (age 59) and Bill Campbell in 1959 (age 49); and figure skater Michelle Kwan in 1980 (age 28).
On this date in history:
In 1846, U.S. Navy Commodore J.D. Sloat proclaimed the annexation of California by the United States.
In 1865, four people convicted of conspiring with John Wilkes Booth in the assassination of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln were hanged in Washington.
In 1898, U.S. President William McKinley signed a joint resolution of Congress authorizing the annexation of Hawaii by the United States.
In 1946, Mother Frances Xavier Cabrini (1850-1917) became the first American to be canonized a saint in the Roman Catholic Church.
In 1973, U.S. President Richard Nixon said he wouldn't appear before the Senate Watergate Investigating Committee or give it access to White House files.
In 1976, the first female students were permitted to enroll at U.S. military academies.
In 1981, Sandra Day O'Connor was chosen by U.S. President Ronald Reagan to become the first woman on the U.S. Supreme Court. She was unanimously approved by the Senate.
In 1987, U.S. Marine Lt. Col. Oliver North began six days of testimony before the congressional Iran-Contra committee.
In 1994, 16 people died in Americus, Ga., when 21.1 inches of rain fell.
In 1998, a Los Angeles jury convicted Mikail Markhasev, 19, of murder in the January 1997 shooting death of Ennis Cosby, son of entertainer Bill Cosby.
In 1999, a Miami-Dade County jury held the leading tobacco companies liable for various illnesses of Florida smokers. The class-action lawsuit, filed in 1994, was the first of its kind to come to trial.
In 2003, the 37-member Iraqi governing council, representing all major ethnic and religious groups in the nation, began work aimed at taking control by the end of the month.
Also in 2003, actor and dancer Buddy Ebsen, known to millions of TV fans as "Beverly Hillbilly" Jed Clampett and detective Barnaby Jones, died in Southern California. He was 95.
In 2004, Ken Lay, founder and former chief executive officer of the bankrupt Enron Corp., was indicted on 11 criminal counts, including conspiracy, bank fraud and securities fraud.
In 2005, terrorists struck the London transit system setting off explosions in three subway cars and a double-decker bus in a coordinated rush-hour arrack. A reported 56 people were killed and more than 700 injured.
In 2006, three men were arrested overseas in an alleged plot to bomb a commuter rail tunnel under the Hudson River between New York and New Jersey.
In 2007, a truck loaded with an estimated 2 tons of explosives was detonated in an outdoor market in Amerli, Iraq, killing a reported 150 people, injuring hundreds more and destroying much of the Shiite village north of Baghdad. About 250 were reported killed in three days of insurgent attacks.
A thought for the day: Benjamin Franklin wrote in "Poor Richard's Almanac" that "If you'd know the value of money, go and borrow some."