Today is Tuesday, July 17, the 199th day of 2012. There are 167 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On July 17, 1862, during the Civil War, Congress approved the Second Confiscation Act, which declared that all slaves taking refuge behind Union lines were to be set free.

Glancing Backward Locally:

25 years ago - 1987

Ruth Squires of North Towanda is celebrating a birthday today.

The observance of the 175th anniversary of Bradford County will occur in October and will be the theme of the Towanda Fall Foliage Festival.

Sidewalk Sale Days brought shoppers to downtown Towanda yesterday for a walk in warm sunshine and a possible bargain or two. The red tag savings are to continue today and tomorrow.

50 years ago - 1962

The winner of the "Old Fashioned Shaving Mug" contest conducted by Search's Drug Store during Cracker Barrel Days in Towanda is Mrs. Thomas Madill of Wysox. The winning entry was a 130-year-old silver mug and brush which had been a gift to Dr. F.F. Madill from General Henry Joseph Madill of the 141st Regiment.

County Agent Orville Young disclosed yesterday that 288 lambs were marketed at the Wyalusing sales barn in the first lamb pool of the season for this county.

Mayflower Grange No. 1311 held a baking contest recently. The results were: first place, yeast rolls, June Slocum; first place, cookies, Helen Hollenback; first place, cake, Laura Ann Hollenback.

75 years ago - 1937

Celebrating his birthday today is Rancy K. Morse, justice of the peace who for many years has endeavored to keep LeRoy, his hometown, in a peaceful frame of mind.

This year for the first time a public commencement ceremony will be conducted at Mansfield State Teachers College at the conclusion of the regular summer session.

Miss Eleanor H. Matthewson, who arrived in Sayre from Chestnut Hill Hospital, Philadelphia, assumed the duties of dietician at the Robert Packer Hospital yesterday.

Elsewhere on this date:

In 1987, the science-fiction film "RoboCop" was released by Orion Pictures.

Ten years ago: A double suicide bombing in Tel Aviv killed two foreign workers and one Israeli. In Britain, a one-day strike by 750,000 municipal employees closed schools, libraries and recreation centers in their first national walkout in more than two decades.

Five years ago: Senate Democrats launched an all-night debate on the Iraq war. VA Secretary Jim Nicholson abruptly resigned in the wake of charges of shoddy health care for veterans injured in the Iraq war. A Brazilian passenger jet crashed while landing in Sao Paulo, Brazil, killing all 187 people aboard and 12 on the ground. Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick was indicted by a federal grand jury in Richmond, Va., on charges related to competitive dogfighting. (Vick later admitted bankrolling the dogfighting operation and helping to kill six to eight dogs; he served 23 months in federal custody, the last 60 days in home confinement.) The Dow Jones industrial average crossed 14,000 for the first time before ending the day at 13,971.55.

One year ago: Japan won the Women's World Cup in Frankfurt, Germany, stunning the United States 3-1 in a penalty shootout after coming from behind twice in a 2-2 tie. Darren Clarke gave Northern Ireland another major championship, winning the British Open by three strokes over Americans Dustin Johnson and Phil Mickelson.

Today's Birthdays: Comedian Phyllis Diller is 95. Jazz singer Jimmy Scott is 87. Actor Donald Sutherland is 77. Actress-singer Diahann Carroll is 77. Rock musician Spencer Davis is 70. Rock musician Terry "Geezer" Butler is 63. Actress Lucie Arnaz is 61. Actor David Hasselhoff is 60. Rock musician Fran Smith Jr. (The Hooters) is 60. Television producer Mark Burnett ("Survivor," ''The Apprentice") is 52. Actress Nancy Giles is 52. Singer Regina Belle is 49. Country singer Craig Morgan is 48. Rock musician Lou Barlow is 46. Contemporary Christian singer Susan Ashton is 45. Actor Andre Royo is 44. Actress Bitty Schram is 44.

Actor Jason Clarke is 43. Singer JC (PM Dawn) is 41. Rapper Sole' is 39. Country singer Luke Bryan is 36. Actor Eric Winter is 36. Hockey player Marc Savard is 35. Actor Mike Vogel is 33. Actor Brando Eaton is 26. Rhythm-and-blues singer Jeremih (jehr-uh-MY') is 25. Actress Summer Bishil (BIHSH'-ihl) is 24.

Thought for Today: "Things turn out best for the people who make the best out of the way things turn out." - Art Linkletter (1912-2010).