Wednesday, June 18, is the 169th day of 2014. There are 196 days left in the year.
Birthdays: Baseball Hall of Famer Lou Brock is 75. Rock singer-composer-musician Sir Paul McCartney is 72. Actress Isabella Rossellini is 62. Actress Carol Kane is 62. Figure skater Kurt Browning is 48. Singer-songwriter Ray LaMontagne is 41. Country singer Blake Shelton is 38.
In 1778, American forces entered Philadelphia as the British withdrew.
In 1812, the War of 1812 began as the United States Congress approved, and President Madison signed, a declaration of war against Britain.
In 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte met his Waterloo as British and Prussian troops defeated the French in Belgium.
In 1873, suffragist Susan B. Anthony was found guilty by a judge in Canandaigua, N.Y., of breaking the law by casting a vote in the 1872 presidential election. (The judge fined Anthony $100, but she never paid the penalty.)
In 1908, William Howard Taft was nominated for president by the Republican National Convention in Chicago.
In 1912, the Republican National Convention, which would nominate President Taft for another term of office, opened in Chicago.
In 1940, during World War II, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill urged his countrymen to conduct themselves in a manner that would prompt future generations to say, ‘‘This was their finest hour.’’
In 1953, a US Air Force Douglas C-124 Globemaster II crashed near Tokyo, killing all 129 people on board. Egypt’s 148-year-old Muhammad Ali Dynasty came to an end with the overthrow of the monarchy and the proclamation of a republic.
In 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson and Japanese Prime Minister Hayato Ikeda spoke to each other by telephone as they inaugurated the first trans-Pacific cable completed by AT&T between Japan and Hawaii, and linked to existing cables between Hawaii and California. (Due to the time difference, it was already June 19 in Tokyo.)
In 1979, President Carter and Soviet leader Leonid I. Brezhnev signed the SALT II strategic arms limitation treaty in Vienna.
In 1983, astronaut Sally K. Ride, 32, became America’s first woman in space as she and four colleagues blasted off aboard the space shuttle Challenger on a six-day mission.
In 1984, Alan Berg, a Denver radio talk show host, was shot to death outside his home. (Two white supremacists were later convicted of civil rights violations in the slaying.)
In 2004, an Al Qaeda cell in Saudi Arabia beheaded US engineer Paul M. Johnson Jr., 49, posting grisly photographs of his severed head; hours later, Saudi security forces tracked down and killed the alleged mastermind of the kidnapping and murder. European Union leaders agreed on the first constitution for the bloc’s 25 members.
In 2013, The Taliban and the US said they would hold talks on finding a political solution to ending nearly 12 years of war in Afghanistan.