Today is Sunday, July 31, the 213th day of 2016 with 153 to follow.
The moon is waning. Morning stars are Neptune and Uranus. Evening stars are Venus, Mercury, Jupiter, Mars and Saturn.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Leo. They include Confederate guerrilla leader William Quantrill in 1837; Kmart founder S.S. Kresge in 1867; pollster Elmo Burns Roper Jr. in 1900; economist Milton Friedman in 1912; former TV talk-show host Irv Kupcinet in 1912: sports announcer Curt Gowdy in 1919; actor Don Murray in 1929 (age 87); actor Ted Cassidy in 1932; actor France Nuyen in 1939 (age 77); actor Geraldine Chaplin in 1944 (age 71); musician Gary Lewis in 1946 (age 70); Australian tennis star Evonne Goolagong Cawley in 1951 (age 65); businessman/NBA team owner Mark Cuban in 1958 (age 58); actor Wesley Snipes in 1962 (age 54); actor Dean Cain in 1966 (age 50); author J.K. Rowling in 1965 (age 51).
On this date in history:
In 1498, on his third voyage to the New World, Christopher Columbus discovered the island of Trinidad.
In 1556 Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Jesuit order of Roman Catholic missionaries and educators, died in Rome.
In 1792, director David Rittenhouse laid the cornerstone in Philadelphia for the U.S. Mint, the first building of the federal government.
In 1964, Ranger 7, an unmanned U.S. lunar probe, took the first close-up images of the moon.
In 1974, Watergate figure John Ehrlichman was sentenced to prison for his role in the break-in at the office of Daniel Ellsberg's psychiatrist. He was in prison 18 months. Ellsberg was the Pentagon consultant who leaked the "Pentagon Papers," documents about the war in Vietnam.
In 1991, the U.S. Senate overturned a 43-year-old law and voted to allow women to fly military warplanes in combat. The House had already approved similar legislation.
In 2011, with default by the U.S. government just days away and after months of frustrating debate, U.S. President Barack Obama and congressional leaders announced an agreement that would raise the debt ceiling by up to $2.4 trillion in two stages, enough to keep borrowing into 2013.
In 2012, U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, visiting Cairo, said newly elected Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi "is his own man" and is committed to democracy. Morsi was ousted by the military less than a year later; then sentenced to death.
In 2013, the U.S. Senate confirmed President Barack Obama's choice of B. Todd Jones, U.S. attorney for Minnesota, to head the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Jones had been part-time acting ATF director.
In 2014, officials reported the number of people killed in a 3-week-old Israeli-Hamas Gaza conflict had risen to 1,360 Palestinians and 59 Israelis, including 56 soldiers.
A thought for the day: "You cannot go into a shop and buy a good game of golf." -- Sam Snead