Today’s Highlight in History:
On July 10, 1940, during World War II, the Battle of Britain began as the Luftwaffe started attacking southern England. (The Royal Air Force was ultimately victorious.)
On this date:
In 1509, theologian John Calvin, a key figure of the Protestant Reformation, was born in Noyon, Picardy, France.
In 1919, President Woodrow Wilson personally delivered the Treaty of Versailles (vehr-SY’) to the Senate and urged its ratification. (However, the Senate rejected it.)
In 1925, jury selection took place in Dayton, Tennessee, in the trial of John T. Scopes, charged with violating the law by teaching Darwin’s Theory of Evolution. (Scopes was convicted and fined, but the verdict was overturned on a technicality.)
In 1929, American paper currency was reduced in size as the government began issuing bills that were approximately 25 percent smaller.
In 1951, armistice talks aimed at ending the Korean War began at Kaesong.
In 1985, Coke Classic, the old formula was re-introduced 78 days after New Coke was launched to take its place.
In 1985, the Greenpeace protest ship Rainbow Warrior was sunk with explosives in Auckland, New Zealand, by French intelligence agents; one activist was killed.
In 1991, Boris N. Yeltsin took the oath of office as the first elected president of the Russian republic. President George H.W. Bush lifted economic sanctions against South Africa.
In 2002, the House approved, 310-113, a measure to allow airline pilots to carry guns in the cockpit to defend their planes against terrorists (President George W. Bush later signed the measure into law).
In 2005, a search-and-rescue team found the body of a missing U.S. commando in eastern Afghanistan, bringing an end to the desperate search for the last member of an ill-fated, four-man special forces unit that had disappeared the previous month.
In 2015, to the cheers of thousands, South Carolina pulled the Confederate flag from its place of honor at the Statehouse after more than 50 years.
In 2018, a daring rescue mission in Thailand was completed successfully, as the last four of the 12 boys who were trapped in a flooded cave for more than two weeks were brought to safety along with their soccer coach; the other eight had been brought out in the two preceding days.
In 2020, President Donald Trump commuted the sentence of his longtime political confidant Roger Stone, intervening in extraordinary fashion in a criminal case that was central to the Russia investigation and concerned Trump’s own conduct; the move came days before Stone was to begin serving a 40-month sentence for lying to Congress, witness tampering and obstructing the House investigation into whether Trump’s 2016 campaign had colluded with Russia.
Ten years ago: Clashing over the economy, President Barack Obama challenged Mitt Romney to join him in allowing tax hikes for rich Americans like them; Romney dismissed the idea and redirected charges that he, Romney, had sent jobs overseas when he worked in private equity, calling Obama the real “outsourcer-in-chief.” An Israeli court cleared former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert of the central charges in a multi-case corruption trial that forced him from power, but convicted him of a lesser charge of breach of trust, for which Olmert received a suspended one-year jail sentence. The National League romped to an 8-0 victory over the American League in the All-Star game.
Five years ago: Donald Trump Jr. acknowledged that he agreed to meet with a Russian lawyer during his father’s presidential campaign in the hope that he would receive information about Democrat Hillary Clinton. Fifteen Marines and a Navy corpsman were killed in the crash of a Marine Corps refueling and cargo plane in a soybean field in Mississippi.
One year ago: A statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee was hoisted off its stone pedestal in Charlottesville, Virginia and hauled away to storage along with a statue of Confederate Gen. Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson; the Lee monument had become a rallying cry for white supremacists, leading to a deadly 2017 rally in which a peaceful counterprotester was killed. Ash Barty won Wimbledon for her second Grand Slam title, holding off a comeback bid by Karolina Pliskova to win 6-3, 6-7 (4), 6-3; she was the first Australian woman to capture Wimbledon since Evonne Goolagong in 1980.
Today’s Birthdays: Actor William Smithers is 95. Actor Lawrence Pressman is 83. Singer Mavis Staples is 83. Actor Mills Watson is 82. Actor Robert Pine is 81. Rock musician Jerry Miller (Moby Grape) is 79. International Tennis Hall of Famer Virginia Wade is 77.
Folk singer Arlo Guthrie is 75. Rock musician Dave Smalley is 73. Country-folk singer-songwriter Cheryl Wheeler is 71. Rock singer Neil Tennant (Pet Shop Boys) is 68. Banjo player Bela Fleck is 64. Actor Fiona Shaw is 64. Bluegrass singer-musician Tim Surrett (Balsam Range) is 59. Actor Alec Mapa is 57. Country singer-songwriter Ken Mellons is 57. Rock musician Peter DiStefano (Porno for Pyros) is 57. Actor Gale Harold is 53. Country singer Gary LeVox (leh-VOH’) (Rascal Flatts) is 52. Actor Aaron D. Spears is 51. Actor Sofia Vergara is 50. Rockabilly singer Imelda May is 48. Actor Adrian Grenier (grehn-YAY’) is 46. Actor Chiwetel Ejiofor (CHOO’-ih-tehl EHJ’-ee-oh-for) is 45. Actor Gwendoline Yeo is 45. Actor Thomas Ian Nicholas is 42. Singer-actor Jessica Simpson is 42. Actor Heather Hemmens is 38. Actor Emily Skeggs (TV: “When We Rise”) is 32. Rapper/singer Angel Haze is 31. Pop singer Perrie Edwards (Little Mix) is 29.