The Thing About Today – July 2

July 2, 2020
Day 184 of 366


July 2nd is the 184th day of the year. Today begins the second half of the year.


In the United States, today is “celebrated” as National Anisette Day. Basically, if you like alcohol and the flavors of black licorice or black jelly beans, this is your day.


Historical items of note:

  • In 1698, Thomas Savery patented the first steam engine.
  • In 1776, the Continental Congress adopted a resolution severing ties with the Kingdom of Great Britain, although the wording of the formal Declaration of Independence was not published until July 4th.
  • In 1839, twenty miles off the coast of Cuba, 53 kidnapped Africans led by Joseph Cinqué mutinied and took over the slave ship Amistad.
  • In 1853, the Russian Army crossed the Pruth river into the Danubian Principalities, Moldavia and Wallachia. This provided the spark that set off the Crimean War.
  • In 1881, Charles J. Guiteau shot and fatally wounded United States President James Garfield. The president would die of complications from his wounds on September 19th.
  • In 1908, lawyer and jurist Thurgood Marshall was born. He was the 32nd Solicitor General of the United States and the first African-American justice of the United States Supreme Court.
  • In 1927, actor and singer Brock Peters was born.
  • In 1934, the Night of the Long Knives ended with the death of Ernst Röhm.
  • In 1937, Amelia Earhart and navigator Fred Noonan were last heard from over the Pacific Ocean while attempting to make the first equatorial round-the-world flight.
  • In 1948, actor Saul Rubinek was born.
  • In 1962, the first Walmart store, then known as Wal-Mart, opened for business in Rogers, Arkansas.
  • In 1964, United States President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which was meant to prohibit segregation in public places.
  • In 1983, singer-songwriter and guitarist Michelle Branch was born.
  • In 1985, actress and singer Ashley Tisdale was born.
  • In 1986, actress and singer Lindsay Lohan was born.
  • In 1990, actress and producer Margot Robbie was born.
  • In 2013, the International Astronomical Union named Pluto’s fourth and fifth moons, Kerberos and Styx.


In 2013, the International Astronomical Union named Pluto’s fourth and fifth moons, Kerberos and Styx. This happened after Pluto was redesignated as a dwarf planet in 2006.

Kerberos was discovered on June 28, 2011, by researchers of the Pluto Companion Search Team using the Hubble Space Telescope. It has a double-lobed shape and is approximately 12 miles across its longest dimension and 5.6 miles across its shortest dimension. It was named after Cerberus, the mythical dog that guards Pluto’s underworld, but since an asteroid was already named 1865 Cerberus, the moon was named Kerberos, using the Greek form of the name.

Styx was discovered at about the same time as Kerberos. It is thought to have formed from the debris lofted by a collision and has measurements ranging from 5 to 10 miles across. Following the convention for naming Plutonian moons with association with the mythological god Pluto, it was named after the goddess of the river of the same name in the underworld.


The Thing About Today is an effort to look at each day of 2020 with respect to its historical context.

For more creativity with a critical eye, visit Creative Criticality.




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