updated 6/29/2005 12:04:52 AM ET 2005-06-29T04:04:52

Today is Wednesday, June 29, the 180th day of 2005. There are 185 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:
On June 29, 1776, the Virginia state constitution was adopted, and Patrick Henry made governor.

On this date:
In 1767, the British Parliament approved the Townshend Revenue Acts, which imposed import duties on certain goods shipped to America. Colonists bitterly protested the Acts, which were repealed in 1770.

In 1949, the government of South Africa enacted a ban against racially mixed marriages.

In 1954, the Atomic Energy Commission voted against reinstating Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer’s access to classified information.

In 1966, the United States bombed fuel storage facilities near the North Vietnamese cities of Hanoi and Haiphong.

In 1967, Jerusalem was re-unified as Israel removed barricades separating the Old City from the Israeli sector.

In 1970, the United States ended a two-month military offensive into Cambodia.

In 1972, the Supreme Court ruled the death penalty, as it was being meted out, could constitute “cruel and unusual punishment.” (The ruling prompted states to revise their capital punishment laws.)

In 1988, the Supreme Court upheld, 7-1, the independent counsel law.

In 1992, a divided Supreme Court ruled that women have a constitutional right to abortion, but the justices also weakened the right as defined by the Roe v. Wade decision.

In 2003, actress Katharine Hepburn, one of the last stars from Hollywood’s Golden Age, died in Old Saybrook, Conn., at age 96.

Ten years ago: The shuttle Atlantis and the space station Mir docked in orbit. A department store in Seoul, South Korea, collapsed, killing at least 500 people. Actress Lana Turner died in Century City, Calif., at age 74.

Five years ago: An overloaded ship carrying almost 500 people, many fleeing sectarian violence in Indonesia’s Maluku islands, sank, killing all but 10 known survivors. President Clinton nominated former Congressman Norman Mineta to lead the Commerce Department and become the first Asian-American Cabinet secretary. Actor Vittorio Gassman died in Rome at age 77.

One year ago: A United Nations helicopter crashed in Sierra Leone, killing all 24 peacekeepers, aid workers and others on board. The Supreme Court blocked a law meant to shield Web-surfing children from online pornography. Randy Johnson of the Arizona Diamondbacks became the fourth pitcher to record 4,000 career strikeouts (however, his team lost to the San Diego Padres, 3-2).

Today’s Birthdays: Movie producer Robert Evans is 75. Songwriter L. Russell Brown is 65. Actor Gary Busey is 61. Comedian Richard Lewis is 58. Actor Fred Grandy is 57. Rock musician Ian Paice (Deep Purple) is 57. Singer Don Dokken (Dokken) is 52. Rock singer Colin Hay (Men At Work) is 52. Actress Maria Conchita Alonso is 48. Singer Evelyn “Champagne” King is 45. Actress Sharon Lawrence is 44. Actress Amanda Donohoe is 43. Rhythm-and-blues singer Stedman Pearson (Five Star) is 41. Musician Dale Baker is 39. Rap D.J. Shadow is 33. Country musician Todd Sansom (Marshall Dyllon) is 27. Singer Nicole Scherzinger (Eden’s Crush) is 27.

Thought for Today: “These are times in which a genius would wish to live. It is not in the still calm of life, or the repose of a pacific station, that great characters are formed ... Great necessities call out great virtues.” — Abigail Adams, American first lady (1744-1818).

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