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June 29, 2011
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It's Wednesday, the 180th day of 2011. There are 185 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History: On June 29, 1767, Britain approved the Townshend Revenue Act, which imposed import duties on glass, paint, oil, lead, paper and tea shipped to the American colonies. (Colonists bitterly protested, prompting Parliament in 1770 to repeal the duties except for tea.)

On this date: In 1861, William James Mayo, one of the founders of the Mayo Clinic, was born in Le Sueur, Minn. English poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning, 55, died in Florence, Italy.

In 1911, the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers had its beginnings as Pope Pius X gave his blessing for the formation of The Catholic Foreign Mission Society of America.

In 1941, Polish statesman, pianist and composer Ignacy Jan Paderewski died in New York at age 80.

In 1954, the Atomic Energy Commission voted against reinstating Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer's access to classified information.

In 1966, the United States bombed fuel storage facilities near the North Vietnamese cities of Hanoi and Haiphong.

In 1967, Jerusalem was re-unified as Israel removed barricades separating the Old City from the Israeli sector.

In 1970, the United States ended a two-month military offensive into Cambodia.

In 1972, the Supreme Court, in Furman v. Georgia, struck down a trio of death sentences, saying they constituted cruel and unusual punishment. (The ruling prompted states to effectively impose a moratorium on capital punishment until the laws could be revised.) In 1988, the Supreme Court upheld the independent counsel law.

In 2003, actress Katharine Hepburn died in Old Saybrook, Conn., at age 96.

Ten years ago: U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan was elected to a second term.

Five years ago: The Supreme Court ruled, 5-3, that President George W. Bush's plan to try Guantanamo Bay detainees in military tribunals violated U.S. and international law. The government announced it had recovered a stolen laptop computer and hard drive with sensitive data on up to 26.5 million veterans and military personnel, and that the data was not accessed or copied.

One year ago: China and Taiwan signed a tariff-slashing trade pact that boosted economic ties and further eased political tensions six decades after the rivals split amid civil war. Talk show host Larry King announced he would step down from his CNN show in the autumn after 25 years on the air.

Today's Birthdays: Movie producer Robert Evans is 81. Songwriter L. Russell Brown is 71. Actor Gary Busey is 67. Comedian Richard Lewis is 64. Actor-turned-politican-turned-radio personality Fred Grandy is 63. Rock musician Ian Paice (Deep Purple) is 63. Singer Don Dokken (Dokken) is 58. Rock singer Colin Hay (Men At Work) is 58. Actress Maria Conchita Alonso is 54. Actress Sharon Lawrence is 50. Actress Amanda Donohoe is 49. Rhythm-and-blues singer Stedman Pearson (Five Star) is 47. Actress Kathleen Wilhoite is 47.

Producer-writer Matthew Weiner (TV: "Mad Men") is 46. Musician Dale Baker is 45. Actress Melora Hardin is 44. Rap DJ Shadow is 39.

Country musician Todd Sansom (Marshall Dyllon) is 33. Singer Nicole Scherzinger is 33.

Thought for Today — Begin somewhere; you cannot build a reputation on what you intend to do — James Russell Lowell, American essayist (1819-1891).

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This feature is only a sample of the full "Today in History," Copyright 2011, The Associated Press. All rights reserved. You are invited to see the entire story at KXNet.com.

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