Today is the seventh day of 2015 and the 18th day of winter.
TODAY'S HISTORY: In 1785, Jean-Pierre Blanchard and John Jeffries crossed the English Channel in a balloon.
In 1927, the first commercial transatlantic telephone call was made between London and New York City.
In 1955, Marian Anderson made her debut at New York's Metropolitan Opera House, becoming the first African-American to perform there.
In 1972, the U.S. Supreme Court's 99th and 100th justices, Lewis F. Powell Jr. and William H. Rehnquist, were sworn in.
TODAY'S BIRTHDAYS: Millard Fillmore (1800-1874), 13th U.S. president; Zora Neale Hurston (1891-1960), author; Francis Poulenc (1899-1963), composer; Charles Addams (1912-1988), cartoonist; Kenny Loggins (1948- ), singer-songwriter; Katie Couric (1957- ), TV news anchor; Rand Paul (1963- ), politician; Nicolas Cage (1964- ), actor; John Ondrasik aka Five for Fighting (1965- ), singer-songwriter; Jeremy Renner (1971- ), actor; John Rich (1974- ), singer-songwriter; Francisco Rodriguez (1982- ), baseball player.
TODAY'S FACT: Millard Fillmore, who assumed the presidency in 1850 upon the death of Zachary Taylor, was the last president from the Whig party. Fillmore sought re-election in 1852, but the Whig party nominated Gen. Winfield Scott instead.
TODAY'S SPORTS: In 1927, the Harlem Globetrotters (who were actually from Chicago) played their first game in Hinckley, Illinois. The team didn't play a game in Harlem until 1968.
TODAY'S QUOTE: "If you are silent about your pain, they’ll kill you and say you enjoyed it." -- Zora Neale Hurston
TODAY'S NUMBER: 2.5 hours -- length of the first balloon trip across the English Channel, which crossed at the channel's narrowest point (21 miles).
TODAY'S MOON: Between full moon (Jan. 4) and last quarter moon (Jan. 13).