Today is Tuesday, June 7, the 158th day of 2011. There are 207 days left in the year.
Today's Highlights in History:
On June 7, 1776, Richard Henry Lee of Virginia proposed to the Continental Congress a resolution stating "That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved."
On this date:
In 1654, King Louis XIV, age 15, was crowned in Rheims, 11 years after the start of his reign.
In 1753, Britain's King George II gave his assent to an Act of Parliament establishing the British Museum.
In 1769, frontiersman Daniel Boone first began to explore present-day Kentucky.
In 1848, French painter and sculptor Paul Gauguin was born in Paris.
In 1929, the sovereign state of Vatican City came into existence as copies of the Lateran Treaty were exchanged in Rome.
In 1939, King George VI and his wife, Queen Elizabeth, arrived at Niagara Falls, N.Y., from Canada on the first visit to the United States by a reigning British monarch.
In 1948, the Communists completed their takeover of Czechoslovakia with the resignation of President Edvard Benes.
In 1967, the Haight Ashbury Free Medical Clinic opened in San Francisco.
In 1981, Israeli military planes destroyed a nuclear power plant in Iraq, a facility the Israelis charged could have been used to make nuclear weapons.
In 1998, in a crime that shocked the nation, James Byrd Jr., a 49-year-old black man, was hooked by a chain to a pickup truck and dragged to his death in Jasper, Texas. (Two white men were later sentenced to death for the crime; a third received life with the possibility of parole.)
Ten years ago: Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh abandoned all appeals after a three-judge panel of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected his request to delay his impending execution. A federal judge refused to stop plans for a World War II Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. British Prime Minister Tony Blair and his Labour Party swept to a second term, winning re-election by a crushing margin.
Five years ago: Abu Musab al-Zarqawi (AH'-boo MOO'-sahb ahl-zahr-KOW'-ee), the founder of al-Qaida in Iraq, was killed by a U.S. airstrike on his safe house. The U.S. Senate rejected a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage.
One year ago: U.S. defense officials announced that Army Spc. Bradley Manning had been detained in Baghdad in connection with a video posted on WikiLeaks showing Apache helicopters gunning down unarmed men in Iraq. White House correspondent Helen Thomas, 89, abruptly retired after calling for Israelis to get "out of Palestine" in an online video. An Indian court convicted seven former employees of Union Carbide's India subsidiary of "death by negligence" for their roles in the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy.
Today's Birthdays: Movie director James Ivory is 83. Actress Virginia McKenna is 80. Singer Tom Jones is 71. Poet Nikki Giovanni is 68. Actor Ken Osmond ("Leave It to Beaver") is 68. Former talk show host Jenny Jones is 65. Actress Anne Twomey is 60. Actor Liam Neeson is 59. Actress Colleen Camp is 58. Singer-songwriter Johnny Clegg is 58. Author Louise Erdrich is 57. Actor William Forsythe is 56. Record producer L.A. Reid is 55. Latin pop singer Juan Luis Guerra is 54. Singer-songwriter Prince is 53. Rock singer-musician Gordon Gano (The Violent Femmes) is 48. Rapper Ecstasy (Whodini) is 47. Rock musician Eric Kretz (Stone Temple Pilots) is 45. Rock musician Dave Navarro is 44. Actress Helen Baxendale is 41. Actor Karl Urban is 39. Rock musician Eric Johnson (The Shins) is 35. Actor-comedian Bill Hader is 33. Actress Anna Torv (TV: "Fringe") is 32. Actress Larisa Oleynik is 30. Tennis player Anna Kournikova is 30. Actor Michael Cera is 23. Actress Shelley Buckner is 22.
Thought for Today: "That would be a good thing for them to cut on my tombstone: 'Wherever she went, including here, it was against her better judgment."' -- Dorothy Parker, American writer (born 1893, died this date in 1967).
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)