SATURDAY, JULY 2, 2016

Today is the 184th day of 2016 and the 13th day of summer.

TODAY'S HISTORY: In 1777, Vermont became the first American territory to abolish slavery.

In 1839, a group of 53 Mende captives revolted and took control of the slave ship Amistad.

In 1881, lawyer Charles Guiteau shot President James Garfield, who died from his wounds 10 weeks later.

In 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, outlawing major forms of discrimination.

In 2002, Steve Fossett completed the first nonstop solo hot air balloon flight around the world.

TODAY'S BIRTHDAYS: Hermann Hesse (1877-1962), author; Thurgood Marshall (1908-1993), Supreme Court justice; Pierre Cardin (1922- ), fashion designer; Medgar Evers (1925-1963), civil rights activist; Richard Petty (1937- ), NASCAR driver; Larry David (1947- ), writer/actor; Jose Canseco (1964- ), baseball player; Johnny Weir (1984- ), figure skater; Lindsay Lohan (1986- ), actress; Margot Robbie (1990- ), actress.

TODAY'S FACT: The first zeppelin airship, which made its debut flight over Lake Constance, Germany, on this day in 1900, was 420 feet long and powered by a 16-horsepower engine.

TODAY'S SPORTS: In 2002, the Chicago White Sox defeated the Detroit Tigers by a score of 17-9. Each team hit six home runs, setting a major league record of 12 in a single game.

TODAY'S QUOTE: "But every man is more than just himself; he also represents the unique, the very special and always significant and remarkable point at which the world's phenomena intersect, only once in this way and never again." -- Hermann Hesse, "Demian"

TODAY'S NUMBER: 11,527 -- Wal-Mart stores (including Walmart U.S., Sam's Club and Walmart International) worldwide, as of April 2016. The first Wal-Mart store opened in Rogers, Arkansas, on this day in 1962.

TODAY'S MOON: Between last quarter moon (June 27) and new moon (July 4).

SUNDAY, JULY 3, 2016

Today is the 185th day of 2016 and the 14th day of summer.

TODAY'S HISTORY: In 1775, George Washington assumed command of the Continental Army.

In 1844, the last two confirmed great auk specimens were killed on the island of Eldey, off the coast of Iceland.

In 1863, an assault by Gen. Robert E. Lee's Confederate forces failed and the Battle of Gettysburg ended in a Union victory.

In 1890, Idaho was admitted as the 43rd U.S. state.

In 1998, Bill Clinton completed the first presidential visit to China since the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989.

TODAY'S BIRTHDAYS: George M. Cohan (1878-1942), songwriter/entertainer; Franz Kafka (1883-1924), author; Dave Barry (1947- ), author/journalist; Montel Williams (1956- ), TV personality; Tom Cruise (1962- ), actor; Thomas Gibson (1962- ), actor; Brian Cashman (1967- ), baseball executive; Teemu Selanne (1970- ), hockey player; Patrick Wilson (1973- ), actor; Olivia Munn (1980- ), actress.

TODAY'S FACT: Rolling Stones guitarist Brian Jones and The Doors frontman Jim Morrison died on this day in 1969 and 1971, respectively.

TODAY'S SPORTS: In 1974, Mike Marshall of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitched in relief of starter Tommy John, setting a major league record for consecutive games pitched in, at 13.

TODAY'S QUOTE: "I think we ought to read only the kind of books that wound and stab us. If the book we are reading doesn't wake us up with a blow on the head, what are we reading it for? ... A book must be the axe for the frozen sea inside us." -- Franz Kafka

TODAY'S NUMBER: 21 -- films starring Tom Cruise that have grossed more than $200 million worldwide, including his 2015 film, "Mission: Impossible -- Rogue Nation."

TODAY'S MOON: Between last quarter moon (June 27) and new moon (July 4).

MONDAY, JULY 4, 2016

Today is the 186th day of 2016 and the 15th day of summer.

TODAY'S HISTORY: In 1776, the Second Continental Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence.

In 1826, founding fathers John Adams and Thomas Jefferson both died on the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

In 1960, the modern version of the American flag (with 50 stars) debuted at a ceremony in Philadelphia.

In 1997, NASA's Pathfinder space probe landed on Mars.

In 2012, the discovery of Higgs boson-like particles through experiments at the Large Hadron Collider was announced at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN).

TODAY'S BIRTHDAYS: George Everest (1790-1866), surveyor/geographer; Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864), writer; Stephen Foster (1826-1864), songwriter; Calvin Coolidge (1872-1933), 30th U.S. president; Eva Marie Saint (1924- ), actress; Neil Simon (1927- ), playwright; Al Davis (1929-2011), Oakland Raiders owner; George Steinbrenner (1930-2010), New York Yankees owner; Geraldo Rivera (1943- ), TV personality.

TODAY'S FACT: Renowned advice columnists Eppie Lederer and Pauline Phillips, known as Ann Landers and Abigail Van Buren ("Dear Abby") respectively, were twin sisters, born on this day in 1918.

TODAY'S SPORTS: In 1939, New York Yankee slugger Lou Gehrig, who was suffering from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, announced his retirement at Yankee Stadium, delivering the famous line, "Today, I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the Earth."

TODAY'S QUOTE: "In youth men are apt to write more wisely than they really know or feel; and the remainder of life may be not idly spent in realizing and convincing themselves of the wisdom which they uttered long ago." -- Nathaniel Hawthorne, "The Snow-Image, and Other Tales"

TODAY'S NUMBER: 1,000 -- approximate number of "Gorilla Sign Language" signs in the working vocabulary of Koko, a female lowland gorilla born on this day in 1971.

TODAY'S MOON: New moon (July 4).

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