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Calendar for July 3rd, 2014

Dog Days Begin

The phrase "Dog Days" conjures up the hottest, most sultry days of summer. The Old Farmer's Almanac lists the traditional timing of the Dog Days: the 40 days beginning July 3 and ending August 11, coinciding with the heliacal (at sunrise) rising of the Dog Star, Sirius. The rising of Sirius does not actually affect the weather (some of our hottest and most humid days occur after August 11), but for the ancient Egyptians, Sirius appeared just before the season of the Nile's flooding, so they used the star as a "watchdog" for that event. Since its rising also coincided with a time of extreme heat, the connection with hot, sultry weather was made for all time: "Dog Days bright and clear / indicate a happy year. / But when accompanied by rain, / for better times our hopes are vain."


  • 1608: Quebec City founded by Samuel de Champlain

  • 1730s

  • Born 1731: Samuel Huntington (signer of the Declaration of Independence)

  • Born 1738: John Singleton Copley (painter)

  • 1810s

  • 1819: The first savings bank in America (Bank of Savings) opened in N.Y.C.

  • 1870s

  • Born 1870: Richard Bedford Bennett (11th Prime Minister of Canada)

  • Born 1878: George M. Cohan (composer)

  • 1880s

  • Born 1883: Franz Kafka (novelist)

  • 1890s

  • 1890: Idaho became the 43rd state to enter the Union

  • 1920s

  • 1922: Fruit Garden and Home magazine was published. The publication changed its name two years later to Better Homes and Gardens

  • Born 1927: Ken Russell (film director)

  • 1930s

  • Born 1930: Pete Fountain (jazz musician)

  • Born 1935: Harrison Schmitt (geologist, astronaut, politician)

  • Born 1937: Tom Stoppard (writer)

  • 1940s

  • Born 1947: Betty Buckley (actress)

  • 1950s

  • Born 1953: Frank Daryl Tanana (baseball player)

  • 1960s

  • Born 1962: Thomas Gibson (actor)

  • Born 1962: Tom Cruise (actor)

  • Born 1964: Yeardley Smith (actress)

  • 1964: President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibited segregation in public places

  • Born 1969: Kevin Hearn (musician)

  • 1970s

  • Died 1971: Jim Morrison (musician)

  • 1980s

  • Died 1986: Rudy Vallee (musician & actor)

  • 1988: The USS Vincennes shot down an Iranian passenger plane over the Persian Gulf, believing it to be a hostile fighter. All 290 civilians aboard were killed

  • Died 1989: Jim Backus (actor)

  • 2000s

  • 2008: Singer Kylie Minogue received an Officer of the Order of the British Empire from Prince Charles during a ceremony at Buckingham Palace

  • 2010s

  • Died 2012: Andy Griffith (actor)

2015 Special Edition Garden GuideCooking Fresh with The Old Farmer's AlmanacThe Almanac Monthly Digital MagazineWhat the heck is a Garden Hod?