Today is Saturday, July 9, the 190th day of 2011 with 175 to follow.
The moon is waxing. The morning stars are Mercury and Saturn. The evening stars are Jupiter, Neptune, Uranus, Mars and Venus.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Cancer. They include Elias Howe, inventor of the sewing machine, in 1819; historian Samuel Eliot Morison in 1887; English romance novelist Barbara Cartland in 1901; actor/singer Ed Ames in 1927 (age 84); English artist David Hockney in 1937 (age 74); actors Brian Dennehy in 1938 (age 73) and Richard Roundtree in 1942 (age 69); writer Dean R. Koontz in 1945 (age 66); football star/actor O.J. Simpson in 1947 (age 64); Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych in 1950 (age 61); entertainer John Tesh in 1952 (age 59); actors Chris Cooper in 1951 (age 60); Tom Hanks in 1956 (age 55), Kelly McGillis in 1957 (age 54), Jimmy Smits in 1955 (age 56) and Fred Savage in 1976 (age 35); singer/actor Courtney Love in 1964 (age 47); rock musician Jack White in 1975 (age 36).
On this date in history:
In 1850, U.S. President Zachary Taylor died suddenly of cholera. He was succeeded by Millard Fillmore.
In 1868, ratification of 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which guaranteed African-Americans full citizenship and all people in the United States due process under the law.
In 1877, the first Wimbledon tennis tournament was contested at the All-England Croquet and Lawn Tennis Club.
In 1893, Chicago surgeon Dr. Daniel Hale Williams performed the first successful open-heart surgery.
In 1943, U.S., Canadian and British forces invaded Sicily during World War II.
In 1947, Florence Blanchard, a nurse, was appointed lieutenant colonel in the Army, becoming the first woman to hold a permanent U.S. military rank.
In 1955, Bill Haley and the Comets' "Rock Around the Clock" hit No. 1 on Billboard magazine's best-seller records chart, marking what some consider the beginning of the rock 'n' roll era.
In 1960, Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev threatened the United States with rockets if U.S. forces attempted to oust the communist government of Cuba.
In 1982, a Pan Am Boeing 727 jetliner crashed in Kenner, La., shortly after takeoff from New Orleans, killing 154 people.
In 1992, Democratic presidential hopeful Bill Clinton picked U.S. Sen. Al Gore, D-Tenn., as his running mate.
In 2002 sports, the All-Star baseball game ended in an 11-inning, 7-7 tie when Commissioner Bud Selig halted proceedings saying the teams had run out of pitchers.
In 2003, the director of South Korea's intelligence service said North Korea has carried out some 70 high-explosive tests linked to nuclear weapons development.
In 2004, a report by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence accused the CIA and other intelligence agencies of producing false and misleading pre-war information about Iraq's weapons program.
Also, in 2004, the International Court of Justice told Israel to tear down or re-route the 400-mile barrier being built on the Palestinian territory border to thwart attacks.
In 2006, a Sibir Airlines Airbus from Moscow taking children to a vacation area in Siberia crashed, killing more than 100 people, including many of the young travelers.
Also in 2006, Shiite gunmen on a rampage in a predominantly Sunni district of Baghdad killed at least 40 people, including unarmed women and children.
In 2007, U.S. President George W. Bush defied a congressional subpoena, citing executive privilege, ordering him to turn over documents relating to the firing of nine U.S. prosecutors in 2006.
Also in 2007, four Islamic men were convicted of trying to bomb the London transit system in July 2005. All were sentenced to life in prison. Their failed plot followed the July 7, 2005, London transit attack that killed 52 people.
In 2008, the Iranian military reportedly test-fired nine missiles, including one that Tehran claimed can reach Israel. One report said a picture of the initial firing appeared to be doctored. The United States and Israel condemned the tests.
Also in 2008, the U.S. Senate passed the reauthorization of the federal government's wiretapping laws. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act set the parameters for investigators when wiretapping phones and reading e-mail of suspected foreign terrorists but trims provisions immunizing telecommunication companies.
In 2009, Tanzanian officials said 13 bodies and debris washed up onto an Indian Ocean island, believed to have been from the Yemeni airliner that crashed a week earlier killing all but one of the 153 persons aboard.
In 2010, a massive suicide bombing attack claimed more than 100 lives at a Pakistan market and injured a reported 120 others. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the Ghalanai assault reportedly aimed at a tribal-government meeting.
Also in 2010, the U.N. Security Council adopted a resolution condemning North Korea's alleged sinking of a South Korean naval vessel. North Korea repeatedly denied involvement in the attack that claimed 46 lives.
A thought for the day: David McCord said, "Life is the garment we continually alter but which never seems to fit."