Today is Thursday, July 20, the 201st day of 2006. There are 164 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On July 20, 1969, Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin became the first men to walk on the moon as they stepped out of their lunar module.
On this date:
In 1810, Colombia declared independence from Spain.
In 1861, the Congress of the Confederate States began holding sessions in Richmond, Va.
In 1871, British Columbia entered Confederation as a Canadian province.
In 1881, Sioux Indian leader Sitting Bull, a fugitive since the Battle of the Little Big Horn, surrendered to federal troops.
In 1942, the first detachment of the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps — later known as WACs — began basic training at Fort Des Moines, Iowa.
In 1944, an attempt by a group of German officials to assassinate Adolf Hitler with a bomb failed as the explosion at Hitler’s Rastenburg headquarters only wounded the Nazi leader.
In 1944, President Roosevelt was nominated for an unprecedented fourth term of office at the Democratic convention in Chicago.
In 1976, America’s Viking 1 robot spacecraft made a successful, first-ever landing on Mars.
In 1977, a flash flood hit Johnstown, Pa., killing 80 people and causing $350 million worth of damage.
In 1999, after 38 years at the bottom of the Atlantic, astronaut Gus Grissom’s Liberty Bell 7 Mercury capsule was lifted to the surface.
Ten years ago: In his weekly radio address, President Clinton paid tribute to America’s Olympic athletes at the just-opened Atlanta games — as well as 16 high school students from Montoursville, Pa., who died in the crash of TWA Flight 800. At the Atlanta Olympics, Renata Mauer of Poland won the games’ first gold, in the 10-meter air rifle.
Five years ago: The G-8 economic summit opened in Genoa, Italy, with raging street battles between police and demonstrators; one protester was fatally shot by officers. Ira Einhorn, convicted in absentia of killing his girlfriend, was flown from France and handed over to Philadelphia police.
One year ago: A day after being tapped by President Bush, Supreme Court nominee John Roberts paid courtesy calls on senators while a conservative group purchased TV ad time in support of his nomination and abortion rights groups staged protests. Actor James Doohan, who played Scotty the engineer in the original “Star Trek” TV series and several movies, died in Redmond, Wash., at age 85.
Today’s Birthdays: Actress-singer Sally Ann Howes is 76. Rockabilly singer Sleepy LaBeef is 71. Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski, D-Md., is 70. Actress Diana Rigg is 68. Rock musician John Lodge (The Moody Blues) is 63. Country singer T.G. Sheppard is 62. Singer Kim Carnes is 60. Rock musician Carlos Santana is 59. Rock musician Paul Cook (The Sex Pistols) is 50. Actress Donna Dixon is 49. Country singer Radney Foster is 47. Actor Frank Whaley is 43. Rock singer Chris Cornell is 42. Rock musician Stone Gossard (Pearl Jam) is 40. Actor Reed Diamond is 39. Actor Josh Holloway (“Lost”) is 37. Singer Vitamin C is 37. Actor Simon Rex is 32. Actress Judy Greer is 31. Actor Charlie Korsmo is 28. Actor John Francis Daley is 21. Actress Billi Bruno is 10.
Thought for Today: “Courage without conscience is a wild beast.” — Robert G. Ingersoll, American lawyer and politician (1833-1899).