Today is Monday, Jan. 26, the 26th day of 2015. There are 339 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On Jan. 26, 1915, President Woodrow Wilson signed the Rocky Mountain National Park Act, which created America’s 10th national park.
On this date:
In 1784, in a letter to his daughter Sarah, Benjamin Franklin expressed unhappiness over the choice of the bald eagle as the symbol of America, and stated his own preference: the turkey.
In 1788, the first European settlers in Australia, led by Capt. Arthur Phillip, landed in present-day Sydney.
In 1837, Michigan became the 26th state.
In 1870, Virginia rejoined the Union.
In 1925, actor Paul Newman was born in Shaker Heights, Ohio.
In 1939, during the Spanish Civil War, rebel forces led by Gen. Francisco Franco captured Barcelona.
In 1942, the first American Expeditionary Force to go to Europe during World War II arrived in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
In 1950, India officially proclaimed itself a republic as Rajendra Prasad took the oath of office as president.
In 1962, the United States launched Ranger 3 to land scientific instruments on the moon — but the probe ended up missing its target by more than 22,000 miles.
In 1979, former Vice President Nelson A. Rockefeller died in New York at age 70.
In 1988, Australians celebrated the 200th anniversary of their country as a grand parade of tall ships re-enacted the voyage of the first European settlers. The Andrew Lloyd Webber musical “Phantom of the Opera” opened at Broadway’s Majestic Theater.
In 1998, President Bill Clinton forcefully denied having an affair with a former White House intern, telling reporters, “I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky.”
Ten years ago: A U.S. Marine helicopter crashed in western Iraq, killing 30 Marines and a Navy medic aboard. A man parked his SUV on railroad tracks in Glendale, California, setting off a crash of two commuter trains that killed 11 people. (The SUV’s driver, Juan Alvarez, was convicted of murder and sentenced to 11 consecutive life terms.) Condoleezza Rice was sworn in as secretary of state, following her confirmation by the Senate.
Five years ago: Toyota suspended U.S. sales of several popular vehicle models to fix sticking accelerator pedals; the suspension was on top of a recall of 2.3 million vehicles. Louis Auchincloss, 92, a prolific author of fiction and nonfiction, died in New York.
One year ago: A brain-dead, pregnant Texas woman’s body was removed from life support as the hospital keeping Marlise Munoz on machines against her family’s wishes acceded to a judge’s ruling that it was misapplying state law. Stan Wawrinka held off an injured Rafael Nadal to win his first Grand Slam title with a 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 victory in the Australian Open final. DeMarco Murray caught a 20-yard pass for a touchdown and Mike Tolbert plunged into the end zone for a 2-point conversion with less than 1 minute to give Jerry Rice’s team a 22-21 win over Deion Sanders’ team in the first schoolyard-style Pro Bowl. At the Grammy Awards, Daft Punk won album of the year for “Random Access Memories,” while record of the year went to Daft Punk with Pharrell Williams and Nile Rodgers for “Get Lucky.”
Today’s Birthdays: Actress Anne Jeffreys is 92. Actress Joan Leslie is 90. Cartoonist Jules Feiffer is 86. Sportscaster-actor Bob Uecker is 80. Actor Scott Glenn is 76. Singer Jean Knight is 72. Activist Angela Davis is 71. Rock musician Corky Laing (Mountain) is 67. Actor David Strathairn (streh-THEHRN’) is 66. Alt-country singer-songwriter Lucinda Williams is 62. Rock singer-musician Eddie Van Halen is 60. Reggae musician Norman Hassan (UB40) is 57. Actress-comedian-talk show host Ellen DeGeneres is 57. Hockey Hall of Famer Wayne Gretzky is 54. Musician Andrew Ridgeley is 52. Rhythm-and-blues singer Jazzie B. (Soul II Soul) is 52. Actor Paul Johansson is 51. Gospel singer Kirk Franklin is 45. Actress Jennifer Crystal is 42. Rock musician Chris Hesse (Hoobastank) is 41. Actor Gilles Marini (ZHEEL ma-REE’-nee) is 39. Gospel singer Tye Tribbett is 39. NBA player Vince Carter is 38. Actress Sarah Rue is 37. Actor Colin O’Donoghue (TV: “Once Upon a Time”) is 34. Country musician Michael Martin (Marshall Dyllon) is 32.
Thought for Today: “My experience of the world is that things left to themselves don’t get right.” — T.H. Huxley, English biologist and author (1825-1895).