TODAY'S HISTORY: In 1850, President Zachary Taylor died in office of a stomach-related illness at the age of 65.
In 1868, the 14th Amendment was ratified, guaranteeing full citizenship and equal protection to African-Americans.
In 1943, Allied forces launched an airborne and amphibious invasion of Sicily.
In 1981, the Nintendo video game "Donkey Kong" was released.
TODAY'S BIRTHDAYS: Ann Radcliffe (1764-1823), author; Matthew Lewis (1775-1818), author; Elias Howe (1819-1867), sewing machine inventor; Donald Rumsfeld (1932- ), former defense secretary; Brian Dennehy (1938- ), actor; Richard Roundtree (1942- ), actor; Dean Koontz (1945- ), author; Chris Cooper (1951- ), actor; John Tesh (1952- ), composer/musician; Lindsey Graham (1955- ), politician; Tom Hanks (1956- ), actor; Courtney Love (1964- ), singer-songwriter; Jack White (1975- ), musician/singer-songwriter.
TODAY'S FACT: In an attempt to inspire efforts and encourage enlistment, Gen. George Washington had the newly adopted Declaration of Independence read aloud to his troops in the Continental Army in New York City on this day in 1776.
TODAY'S SPORTS: In 1877, the inaugural Wimbledon tennis championship took place in London.
TODAY'S QUOTE: "An author, whether good or bad, or between both, is an animal whom everybody is privileged to attack: For though all are not able to write books, all conceive themselves able to judge them." -- Matthew Lewis, "The Monk"
TODAY'S NUMBER: 1,720 -- height (in feet) of the wave surge that hit Lituya Bay in the Gulf of Alaska on this day in 1958. The "megatsunami," the largest in recorded history, was caused by an 8.3-magnitude earthquake on the Fairweather Fault along the Alaskan coast.