Today is Wednesday, July 9, the 190th day of 2014 with 175 to follow.
The moon is waxing. Morning stars are Mercury, Neptune, Uranus and Venus. Evening stars are Jupiter, Mars and Saturn.
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 87); English artist David Hockney in 1937 (age 77); actors Brian Dennehy in 1938 (age 76) and Richard Roundtree in 1942 (age 72); writer Dean R. Koontz in 1945 (age 69); football star/actor/convict O.J. Simpson in 1947 (age 67); former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych in 1950 (age 64); entertainer John Tesh in 1952 (age 62; actors Chris Cooper in 1951 (age 63); Tom Hanks in 1956 (age 58), Kelly McGillis in 1957 (age 57), Jimmy Smits in 1955 (age 59) and Fred Savage in 1976 (age 38); and rock musicians Courtney Love in 1964 (age 50) and Jack White in 1975 (age 39).
On this date in history:
In 1850, U.S. President Zachary Taylor died suddenly of cholera. He was succeeded by Millard Fillmore.
In 1868, the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified, guaranteeing 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 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, the Major League Baseball All-Star Game ended in an 11-inning 7-7 tie when Commissioner Bud Selig halted proceedings, saying the teams had run out of pitchers.
In 2004, a report by the U.S. 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.
In 2006, a Sibir Airlines Airbus from Moscow taking children to a vacation area in Siberia crashed, killing more than 100 people.
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.
In 2011, after more than half a century of struggle and violence that claimed an estimated 2 million lives, the Republic of South Sudan declared its independence from Sudan and became Africa's 54th nation.
In 2013, Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight, held captive in a Cleveland house for almost a decade before they were freed, broke two months of media silence with a video on YouTube thanking the public for its support.
A thought for the day: Ronald Reagan said democracy "is worth dying for, because it's the most deeply honorable form of government ever devised by man."