Today is Sunday, June 19, the 170th day of 2011 with 195 to follow.
This is Father’s Day.
The moon is waxing. The morning stars are Mercury and Saturn. The evening stars are Jupiter, Neptune, Uranus, Mars and Venus.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Gemini. They include James VI of Scotland, later James I of England, in 1566; French philosopher and mathematician Blaise Pascal in 1623; the Duchess of Windsor, born Bessie Wallis Warfield, in 1896; Moe Howard, leader of the Three Stooges comedy act, in 1897; bandleader Guy Lombardo in 1902; baseball legend Lou Gehrig in 1903; former U.S. Sen. Alan Cranston, D-Calif., and musician Lester Flatt, both in 1914; film critic Pauline Kael in 1919; actors Nancy Marchand in 1928 and Gena Rowlands in 1930 (age 81); Myanmarese Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi in 1945 (age 66); author Salman Rushdie in 1947 (age 64); actor Phylicia Rashad in 1948 (age 63); musicians Nick Drake in 1948 and Ann Wilson of Heart in 1950 (age 61); actor Kathleen Turner in 1954 (age 57); singer Paula Abdul in 1962 (age 49); political commentator Laura Ingraham in 1964 (age 47); actors Mia Sara in 1967 (age 44), Robin Tunney in 1972 (age 39) and Paul Dano in 1984 (age 27).
On this date in history:
In 325 A.D., the early Christian church opened the general council of Nicaea, which settled on rules for computing the date of Easter.
In 1787, the U.S. Constitutional Convention voted to strike down the Articles of Confederation and form a new government.
In 1846, two amateur baseball teams played under new rules at Hoboken, N.J., planting the first seeds of organized baseball. The New York Nine beat the Knickerbockers, 23-1.
In 1856, the first Republican national convention ended in Philadelphia with the nomination of explorer John Charles Fremont of California for president. James Buchanan, a Federalist nominated by the Democrats, was elected.
In 1867, Austrian Archduke Ferdinand Maximilian, installed as emperor of Mexico by French Emperor Napoleon III in 1864, was executed on the orders of Benito Juarez, the president of the Mexican Republic.
Also in 1867, the first running of the Belmont Stakes took place at Jerome Park, N.Y.
In 1905, Pittsburgh showman Harry Davis opened the world’s first nickelodeon, showing the silent Western film “The Great Train Robbery.” The storefront theater boasted 96 seats and charged 5 cents and prompted the advent of movie houses across the United States.
In 1910, Spokane, Wash., marked the first Father’s Day.
In 1943, World War II’s Battle of the Philippine Sea began, as Japan tried unsuccessfully to prevent further Allied advancement in the South Pacific.
In 1953, convicted spies Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were executed.
In 1977, Elvis Presley made his final live concert recordings at a series of appearances in Nebraska. He died two months later.
In 1987, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the 1981 Louisiana law that required schools to teach the creationist theory of human origin espoused by fundamentalist Christians.
In 1991, the U.N. Security Council unanimously approved a plan to prohibit the export of military supplies to Iraq.
In 2000, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that prayers led by students at public high school football games aren’t permitted under the constitutional separation of church and state.
In 2005, a suicide bomber killed at least 23 people, including Iraqi police officers, in a crowded Baghdad restaurant. The next day saw suicide car bombers kill a reported 26 policemen and security forces in Baghdad and Irbil.
Also in 2005, opponents of Syrian domination won a majority of seats in the final round of Lebanon’s parliamentary elections.
In 2007, 10,000 U.S. and 3,000 Iraqi troops launched a major offensive targeting the Sunni jihadist terrorist group known as al-Qaida in Iraq in Iraq’s Baquba area.
In 2008, Sen. Barack Obama, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, became the first at that level to bypass public financing since the program was established. Obama said he believed the move would provide better resources to defend his campaign from attacks by Republicans.
In 2009, Hawaii was placed under heightened missile and other defense fortification, including mobile and ground-based interceptors, to deter any possible North Korean attacks, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said.
Also in 2009, two U.S. service members, an Army major and an Air Force master sergeant, pleaded guilty to bribery, fraud and conspiracy charges involving defense contracts in Afghanistan.
And, British World War I veteran, Henry Allingham, who turned 114 on June 6, 2009, was recognized by the Guinness World Records as the world’s oldest man. He died about six weeks later.
In 2010, a U.N. report said the level of insurgent violence in Afghanistan jumped in the past three months with a near doubling of roadside bombings and an increase in suicide attacks and assassinations.
Also in 2010, Chicago-area storms blew out windows on three floors of the tallest U.S. building, the 110-story Willis Tower.
A thought for the day: Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote of cheerfulness, “the more it is spent, the more of it remains.”