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Births: Jean-Pierre Blanchard, balloonist, 1753; Giuseppe Garibaldi, Italian leader, 1807; Karl Heinrich Doring, composer and teacher, 1834; Carolus-Duran, painter, 1837; Dr Thomas John Barnardo, philanthropist, 1845; James Anthony Bailey, circus proprietor, 1847; Hugo Winckler, Assyriologist, 1863; John Calvin Coolidge, 30th US President, 1872; Louis Burt Mayer, Hollywood ''movie mogul'', 1885; Gertrude Lawrence, actress, 1898; Daniel Louis Armstrong, jazz trumpeter and singer, 1900; Lionel Trilling, author and educationist, 1905.

Deaths: William Byrd, organist and composer, 1623; Samuel Richardson, novelist and author of Pamela, 1761; John Adams, second US President, 1826; Thomas Jefferson, third US President, 1826; James Monroe, fifth US President, 1831; Giovanni Virginio Schiaparelli, astronomer, 1910; Max Klinger, painter, etcher and sculptor, 1920; Marie Curie (Marja Sklodowska), chemist, 1934; Wladyslaw Sikorski, prime minister of Poland, in an air crash 1943.

On this day: Providence, Rhode Island, was founded by the English Puritan, Roger Williams, 1636; the American Declaration of Independence was adopted, 1776; the second Theatre Royal Haymarket opened in London, 1821; the first London bus ran from Marylebone Road to the Bank of England, 1829; Britannia, the first Cunard steamship, sailed from Liverpool to Halifax and Boston, 1840; Karl Heinrich Marx and Friedrich Engels published the Communist Manifesto, 1848; the Statue of Liberty was presented by the people of France to the US, 1883; the Gaiety Theatre was demolished, London 1903; the construction of the Panama Canal began, 1904; Hanna Reitsch made the first successful flight in a helicopter, Germany, 1937; the Republic of the Philippines was established, 1946.

Today is Independence Day in the United States of America and the Feast Day of St Andrew of Crete, St Bertha of Blangy, St Elizabeth of Portugal, St Odo of Canterbury, St Ulric of Augsburg and the Martyrs of Dorchester.