Today is the 253rd day of 2012 and the 82nd day of summer.
TODAY'S HISTORY: In 1776, the Continental Congress resolved to use the name "United States" instead of the previous "United Colonies."
In 1850, California became the 31st U.S. state.
In 1956, Elvis Presley appeared on "The Ed Sullivan Show" for the first time.
In 1997, Sinn Fein, the political ally of the Irish Republican Army, formally renounced violence as it prepared for negotiations on the future of Northern Ireland.
TODAY'S BIRTHDAYS: Leo Tolstoy (1828-1910), writer; Harland David "Colonel" Sanders (1890-1980), businessman; Otis Redding (1941-1967), singer/songwriter; Joe Theismann (1949- ), sportscaster/football player; Tom Wopat (1951- ), actor; Hugh Grant (1960- ), actor; Adam Sandler (1966- ), comedian/actor; Michael Buble (1975- ), singer; Michelle Williams (1980- ), actress.
TODAY'S SPORTS: In 1965, Los Angeles Dodger Sandy Koufax threw a perfect game against the Chicago Cubs.
TODAY'S FACT: California became a state in 1850 without going through a formal period as a U.S. territory. Its population exploded due to the Gold Rush, allowing the area to quickly achieve the 60,000 residents required for statehood.
TODAY'S QUOTE: "Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself." -- Leo Tolstoy
TODAY'S NUMBER: 134.5 million -- albums certified sold by Elvis Presley, making him second only to the Beatles (177 million) as the greatest-selling artist of all time.
TODAY'S MOON: Between last quarter (Sept. 8) and new moon (Sept. 15).