Monday, July 20
Today is Monday, July 20, the 201st day of 2015. There are 164 days left in the year.
Highlights in history on this date:
1654 - By treaty, England receives privileges for its merchants in Portugal in exchange for military aid.
1810 - Bogota rises against Spanish rule. The day is now Independence Day in Colombia.
1811 - The Rev. Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, a hero of independence, is executed by firing squad in Chihuahua, Mexico.
1861 - Congress of the southern Confederate States convened in Richmond, Virginia, after seceding from the U.S.
1871 - British Columbia enters Confederation as a Canadian province.
1880 - The second British invasion of Afghanistan ends; Abdur Rahman proclaims himself the new Afghan ruler.
1881 - Sioux leader Sitting Bull, a fugitive since the Battle of the Little Bighorn in 1876, surrenders to U.S. troops.
1903 - Morocco grants France control of frontier police.
1913 - Turkey recaptures Adrianople from Bulgaria during Balkan War, regaining Ottoman Empire’s most important Balkan city.
1922 - League of Nations Council approves mandates for Cameroon, Togoland (now divided between Togo and Ghana) and Tanganyika (which later merged with Zanzibar to form Tanzania).
1923 - Mexican revolutionary leader Francisco “Pancho” Villa is assassinated in Hidalgo del Parral, Mexico.
1944 - Adolf Hitler is injured by a bomb in an attache case, an assassination attempt by German officers that leads to a brutal purge. And U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt is nominated for a fourth term at the Democratic convention.
1945 - U.S. flag is raised over Berlin as U.S. troops prepare to occupy Germany after World War II.
1947 - Dutch troops launch new offensive in Java against Indonesian forces.
1951 - Jordan’s King Abdullah is assassinated in Jerusalem by a Palestinian nationalist after Jordan annexed West Bank territory.
1954 -Geneva Accords divide Vietnam into northern and southern entities.
1958 - United Arab Republic, the brief union of Egypt and Syria, severs relations with Jordan.
1968- The first International Special Olympics Summer Games, organized by Eunice Kennedy Shriver, are held in Chicago.
1969 - U.S. astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin became the first men to walk on the moon after reaching the surface in their Apollo 11 lunar module.
1974 - Turkish forces invade Mediterranean island of Cyprus after a coup by supporters of union with Greece.
1976 - U.S. spacecraft Viking I lands on Mars after 11-month flight and begins sending back clear pictures of the red planet.
1985 - Treasure hunters begin hauling off $400 million in coins and silver ingots from the wreck of the Spanish galleon, Nuestra Senora de Atocha, which sank off the coast of Key West, Florida, in 1622.
1988 - Agreement reached on withdrawal of foreign troops from Angola and independence for South-West Africa — now Namibia.
1989 - Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi is placed under house arrest by the military government of Myanmar.
1991 - Russian Federation President Boris N. Yeltsin bans political activity in Russian government offices and republic-run businesses.
1992 - Vaclav Havel, the playwright who led Czechoslovakia’s Velvet Revolution against communism, steps down as president after failing to halt the country’s break-up into separate Czech and Slovak nations.
1995 - Iraq begins destroying five machines that could be used to make ballistic missile parts, in a step toward meeting U.N. demands.
1996 - Hutu rebels attack Tutsi refugees at a camp in Burundi, killing some 320 people, mostly women and children.
1998 - Nigeria’s new military leader, Gen. Abdulsalam Abubakar, announces plans for elections and a civilian president by May.
1999 - After 38 years at the bottom of the Atlantic, astronaut Gus Grissom’s Liberty Bell 7 Mercury capsule was lifted to the surface.
2001 - German leaders honor officers who tried to assassinate Adolf Hitler 57 years ago, laying wreaths on the anniversary of the failed attack.
2002 - A fire in a discotheque in Lima, Peru, kills 25 people and injures 100 more. The fire reportedly started when a bartender, performing a fire-eating stunt, accidentally ignited the curtains.
2003 - Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas meet in Jerusalem to discuss Palestinian demands for the release of prisoners held by Israel and for Israeli troop withdrawals from the West Bank.
2004 - The U.N. General Assembly demands that Israel tear down the barrier it was building to seal off the West Bank; Israel vows to continue construction.
2005 - Hurricane Emily slams into northeastern Mexico, knocking out power and forcing thousands to flee small fishing villages after leaving hundreds homeless and destroying luxury hotels in the Yucatan Peninsula.
2006 - Hundreds of Ethiopian troops in armored vehicles roll into Somalia to protect their allies in the country’s virtually powerless government from Islamic militants who control the capital.
2007 - The Pakistani Supreme Court rules that President Pervez Musharraf had no authority to suspend Pakistan’s top judge and orders Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry reinstated.
2009 - A U.N. war crimes court convicts two Bosnian Serb cousins for a 1992 killing spree that included locking scores of Muslims in two houses and burning them alive.
2012 - A gunman hurls a gas canister inside a crowded movie theater in Colorado during a midnight showing of the new Batman movie and then opens fire, killing 12 people and wounding nearly 60 others.
2013 - Americans rally in dozens of U.S. cities, urging authorities to press federal civil rights charges against George Zimmerman, the former neighborhood watch leader found not guilty in the shooting death of unarmed teen Trayvon Martin. And five employees of an Italian cruise company are convicted of manslaughter in the Costa Concordia shipwreck that killed 32 people, receiving sentences of less than three years.
Francesco Petrarca, Italian poet (1304-1374); Alberto Santos-Dumont, Brazilian aviator (1872-1932); Theda Bara, U.S. silent-film actress (1885-1955); Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, Hungarian artist (1895-1946); Sir Edmund Hillary, New Zealand mountaineer (1919-2008); Diana Rigg, English actress (1938--); Kim Carnes, U.S. singer (1945--); Carlos Santana, Mexican guitarist (1947--); Judy Greer, actress (1975--); Stone Gossard, U.S. musician (1966--).
Thought For Today:
Somehow a bachelor never quite gets over the idea that he is a thing of beauty and a boy forever — Helen Rowland, American writer and humorist (1875-1950).