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Matthew Hedger
06/30/2014 3:34 PM

Today is Monday, June 30, the 181st day of 2014 with 184 to follow.

The moon is waxing. Morning stars are Mercury, Nepune, Uranus and Venus. Evening stars are Jupiter, Mars and Saturn.

In 1859, Frenchman Jean Francois Gravelet, known professionally as the Great Blondin, became the first daredevil to walk across Niagara Falls on a tightrope.

In 1870, Ada Kepley became the first woman to graduate from an accredited law school in the United States, Union College of Law in Chicago.

In 1905, the theory of relativity was introduced by Albert Einstein in On the Electrodynamics of Moving Bodies.

In 1908, a spectacular explosion occurred over central Siberia, probably caused by a meteorite. The fireball could be seen hundreds of miles away.

In 1923, jazz pioneer Sidney Bechet made his first recording. It included Wild Cat Blues and Kansas City Blues.

In 1934, German leader Adolf Hitler ordered a bloody purge of his own political party. (Hundreds of Nazis he feared might become political enemies were assassinated.)

In 1936, Margaret Mitchell's Civil War novel Gone With the Wind was published.

In 1950, U.S. troops were moved from Japan to help defend South Korea against the invading North Koreans.

In 1982, the extended deadline for ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment expired, three states short of the 38 needed for passage.

In 1971, three Soviet Cosmonauts, members of the crew of the world's first space station, were killed when their spacecraft depressurized during re-entry.

In 1992, Fidel Ramos was inaugurated as the eighth Philippine president in the first peaceful transfer of power in a generation.

In 2006, a U.S.-Canadian investigation grounded a group accused of using helicopters and planes to ferry drugs from British Columbia across the border. Agents reported arresting 46 people and seizing 4 tons of marijuana, 800 pounds of cocaine, aircraft and $1.5 million in cash.

In 2009, Yemenia Airways Flight IY626, which had taken off from Sanaa, Yemen, crashed into the Indian Ocean while trying to land at Moroni, the capital of Comoros, killing 152 of 153 people aboard. The lone survivor was 14-year-old Bahia Bakari, who became known as the miracle girl.

In 2011, the U.S. Senate unanimously confirmed Gen. David Petraeus as director of the CIA. (Petraeus resigned in November 2012, saying he showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extramarital affair.)

In 2013, the Yarnell Hill wildfire in Arizona killed 19 firefighters on what Gov. Jan Brewer called as dark a day as I can remember. (On July 9 in Prescott, thousands of people, including firefighters from across the country, attended a memorial service for the victims, all members of specialized firefighting unit called the Granite Mountain Hotshots.)

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