Today is Wednesday, Sept. 9, the 252nd day of 2015 with 113 to follow.
The moon is waning. Morning stars are Jupiter, Mars, Uranus and Venus. Evening stars are Mercury, Neptune and Saturn.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Virgo. They include the Cardinal-duc de Richelieu, French statesman/Roman Catholic cardinal, in 1585; British Capt. William Bligh, of the HMS Bounty, in 1754; Russian author Leo Tolstoy in 1828; baseball Hall of Fame member Frank Chance in 1876; Alf Landon, the Kansas Republican who lost the 1936 presidential election to Democrat Franklin D. Roosevelt, in 1887; Kentucky Fried Chicken founder Harland Sanders in 1890; movie composer Arthur Freed in 1894; oddsmaker Jimmy "the Greek" Snyder in 1918; philanthropist Robert Wood Johnson III in 1920; actor Cliff Robertson in 1923 ; rhythm and blues singer Otis Redding in 1941; football Hall of Fame member Joe Theismann in 1949 (age 66); actor Tom Wopat in 1951 (age 64); actor Angela Cartwright in 1952 (age 63) ; actor Hugh Grant in 1960 (age 55); actor Adam Sandler in 1966 (age 49); actor Rachel Hunter in 1969 (age 46); actor Henry Thomas ("E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial") in 1971 (age 44); actor Goran Visnjic in 1972 (age 43); singer Michael Buble in 1975 (age 40); rapper Soulja Slim in 1977; singer Hunter Hayes in 1991 (age 24);
On this date in history:
In 1776, the second Continental Congress officially changed the new American nation's name from "United Colonies" to "United States."
In 1850, California became the 31st state.
In 1956, rock 'n' roll singer Elvis Presley appeared on national television for the first time -- on "The Ed Sullivan Show."
In 1971, more than 1,000 convicts took over the state prison at Attica, N.Y. and held hostages. Four days later, 28 convicts and nine hostages were killed as state police reclaimed the prison. (The overall death toll was later set at 43.)
In 1976, Chinese revolutionary leader Mao Zedong died at age 82.
In 1990, Liberian President Samuel Doe was killed by rebels after visiting the headquarters of West African peacekeeping forces in Monrovia.
In 1993, in a letter to Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, the PLO recognized the right of the state of Israel to exist in peace and security. In turn, Rabin declared the PLO the representative of the Palestinian people.
In 1995, Steffi Graf won her fourth of five U.S. Open women's singles title, defeating Monica Seles in her first appearance since a fan stabbed her in 1993. (Graff ended her career with 22 Grand Slam singles championships.)
In 1999, more than 90 people died in the bombing of a Moscow apartment building. The blast was blamed on militants from the breakaway republic of Chechnya.
In 2003, the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston agreed to pay $85 million in lawsuits by more than 500 people who said they sexually abused by priests.
In 2008, Thai Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej was ousted for moonlighting as a paid performer on a TV cooking show.
In 2010, a federal judge in California ruled that the "don't ask, don't tell" policy preventing homosexuals from serving openly in the U.S. armed services was unconstitutional.
In 2012, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told Russian leaders in Vladivostok their support of the government of Syria, which had been torn by a civil war for a year and a half, is an affront to Washington.
In 2013, an Indian court convicted four men on charges they raped and murdered a 23-year-old student on a private bus in Delhi -- a December 2012 attack that caused nationwide outrage. (They were sentenced to death.)
In 2014, a car bomb exploded at the headquarters of Ahrar al-Sham, a Syrian rebel group opposed to the government of President Bashar al-Assad, and killed many of its leaders.
A thought for the day: "A country's competitiveness starts not on the factory floor or in the engineering lab. It starts in the classroom." -- former Chrysler Chairman Lee Iacocca