215th day of 2012, 151 remaining
99% of the moon is visible, setting at 6:56am, rising at 8:29pm
Low Tides at the Golden Gate: 6:13am/6:17pm
High Tide: 1:14pm
Today's special celebrations:
Emancipation Day - St. Kitts & Nevis
Ilindan -Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia
Virgin of the Angels Day - Costa Rica
Saint Ilija - Serbia
National Ice Cream Sandwich Day
On this day in...
1776 - Members of the Continental Congress began adding their signatures to the Declaration of Independence.
1782 - George Washington invented the Honorary Badge of Distinction.
1791 - Samuel Briggs and his son Samuel Briggs, Jr. received a joint patent for their nail-making machine. They were the first father-son pair to receive a patent.
1824 - In New York City, Fifth Avenue was opened.
1858 - In Boston and New York City the first mailboxes were installed along streets.
1861 - The United States Congress passed the first income tax. The revenues were intended for the war effort against the South. The tax was never enacted.
1887 - Rowell Hodge patented barbed wire.
1892 - Charles A. Wheeler patented the first escalator.
1921 - Eight White Sox players were acquitted of throwing the 1919 World Series.
1926 - John Barrymore and Mary Astor starred in the first showing of the Vitaphone System. The system was the combining of picture and sound for movies.
1938 - Bright yellow baseballs were used in a major league baseball game between the Dodgers and the Cardinals. It was hoped that the balls would be easier to see.
1939 - Albert Einstein signed a letter to President Roosevelt urging the U.S. to have an atomic weapons research program.
1939 - U.S. President Roosevelt signed the Hatch Act. The act prohibited civil service employees from taking an active part in political campaigns.
1943 - The U.S. Navy patrol torpedo boat, PT-109, sank after being attacked by a Japanese destroyer. The boat was under the command of Lt. John F. Kennedy.
1945 - The Allied conference at Potsdam was concluded.
1964 - The Pentagon reported the first of two North Vietnamese attacks on U.S. destroyers in the Gulf of Tonkin.
1983 - U.S. House of Representatives approved a law that designated the third Monday of January would be a federal holiday in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The law was signed by President Reagon on November 2.
1987 - "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" was re-released. The film was 50 years old at the time of its re-release.
1990 - Iraq invaded the oil-rich country of Kuwait. Iraq claimed that Kuwait had driven down oil prices by exceeding production quotas set by OPEC.
1995 - China ordered the expulsion of two U.S. Air Force officers. The two were said to have been caught spying on military sights.
If today's your birthday, you share it with:
Sir Arthur Edward Drummond Bliss 1891
Myrna Loy 1905
Beatrice Straight 1918
James Baldwin 1924
Carroll O'Connor 1924
Peter O'Toole 1932
Hank Cochran 1935
Garth Hudson 1937
Wes Craven 1939
Edward Patten 1939
Doris Kenner-Jackson 1941
Kathy Lennon 1942
Max Wright 1943
Joanna Cassidy 1945
Lance Ito 1950
Andrew Gold 1951
Mojo Nixon 1957
Victoria Jackson 1959
Cynthia Stevenson 1963
Mary-Louise Parker 1964
John Stanier 1968
Zelma Davis 1970
Edward Furlong 1977