The almanac

By United Press International
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Today is Monday, July 8, the 189th day of 2013 with 176 to follow.

The moon is new. Morning stars are Jupiter, Mars, Neptune and Uranus. Evening stars are Mercury, Saturn and Venus.


Those born on this date are under the sign of Cancer. They include chemist John Pemberton, inventor of Coca-Cola, in 1936; German dirigible inventor Ferdinand von Zeppelin in 1838; French psychologist Alfred Binet in 1857; oil magnate John D. Rockefeller in 1839 and his grandson, former U.S. Vice President Nelson Rockefeller, in 1908; band leader Louis Jordan, also in 1908; White House journalist Sarah Newcomb McClendon in 1910; drama critic Walter Kerr in 1913; jazz singer Billy Eckstine in 1914; TV executive Roone Arledge in 1931; singers Jerry Vale in 1932 (age 81) and Steve Lawrence in 1935 (age 78); actors Marty Feldman in 1934 and Jeffrey Tambor in 1944 (age 69); ballet dancer Cynthia Gregory in 1946 (age 67); children's singer Raffi (Cavoukian) in 1948 (age 65); chef Wolfgang Puck in 1949 (age 64); football Hall of Fame member Jack Lambert and writer Anna Quindlen, both in 1952 (age 61); actors Kim Darby in 1947 (age 66), Anjelica Huston in 1951 (age 62), Kevin Bacon in 1958 (age 55) and Billy Crudup in 1968 (age 45); singer Beck (Hansen) in 1970 (age 43); and actor Jaden Smith in 1998 (age 15).


On this date in history:

In 1497, Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama sailed from Lisbon on a voyage that would lead to discovery of a sea route to India around the southern tip of Africa.

In 1776, the Declaration of Independence was read in public for the first time, to people gathered at Philadelphia's Independence Square.

In 1835, the Liberty Bell cracked while being rung during the funeral of U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Marshall in Philadelphia.

In 1853, Commodore Matthew Perry, representing the U.S. government, sailed into Tokyo Bay to begin negotiations that led to the United States becoming the first Western nation to establish diplomatic relations with Japan in two centuries.

In 1889, The Wall Street Journal was first published.

In 1950, U.S. Army Gen. Douglas MacArthur was designated commander of U.N. forces in Korea.

In 1969, the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Vietnam began.

In 1991, Yugoslav leaders signed an accord calling for an internationally observed cease-fire in Slovenia and Croatia.

In 1994, North Korean President Kim Il Sung died at age 82. He had led the country since its founding in 1948.

In 1997, NATO invited Eastern European nations Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic to join the organization.


In 1998, four leaders of the Montana Freemen were convicted in federal court in Billings, Mont., of conspiring to defraud banks. The anti-government, anti-tax group had staged an 81-day standoff at its ranch in 1996.

In 2003, North Korea said work had begun on nuclear weapons with enough plutonium on hand to build six bombs.

In 2004, a U.S. Marine reported to have been beheaded by Iraqi captors showed up alive and well at the U.S. Embassy in Beirut. Cpl. Wassef Ali Hassoun, 24, was turned over to military authorities.

In 2006, Atlantic City's 12 casinos reopened after being forced to shut down for three days, as were a number of New Jersey state offices, in a political dispute that virtually closed government over a proposed 1-cent raise in the sales tax. The state, which employs inspectors at the casinos, lost about $4 million in gambling taxes.

In 2009, Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, benefiting from a robust economy, was easily re-elected.

In 2010, a French surgeon said he had performed the first successful transplant of a complete face, giving a 35-year-old disfigured man every feature, including tear ducts.


In 2011, the Atlantis began the 135th and final mission of the U.S. space shuttle program that started in 1981, a two-week voyage to the International Space Station with a cargo of supplies and spare parts.

In 2012, Oscar-winning actor Ernest Borgnine ("Marty") died in Los Angeles. He was 95.

A thought for the day: "Business? That's very simple. It's other people's money," a remark from Alexandre Dumas.

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