Today is Thursday, Oct. 16, the 289th day of 2003 with 76 to follow.
The moon is waxing. The morning stars are Mercury, Jupiter and Saturn. The evening stars are Mars, Venus, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto.
Those born on this day are under the sign of Virgo. They include lexicographer Noah Webster in 1758; Irish author and dramatist Oscar Wilde in 1854; David Ben-Gurion, Israel's first prime minister, in 1886; playwright Eugene O'Neill in 1888; Irish revolutionist Michael Collins in 1890; Supreme Court Justice William Orville Douglas in 1898; German novelist Gunter Grass in 1927 (age 76); actor Barry Corbin ("Northern Exposure") in 1940 (age 63); actresses Linda Darnell in 1921, Angela Lansbury in 1925 (age 78) and Suzanne Somers in 1946 (age 57); Grateful Dead co-founder Bob Weir in 1947 (age 56); actor Tim Robbins in 1958 (age 45); basketball player Manute Bol in 1962 (age 41); and actress Kellie Martin in 1975 (age 28).
On this date in history:
In 1701, Yale University was founded.
In 1793, French Queen Marie Antoinette was beheaded.
In 1859, abolitionist John Brown led an abortive raid on the federal arsenal at Harper's Ferry, Va. He was convicted of treason and hanged.
In 1868, America's first department store, ZCMI, opened in Salt Lake City.
In 1916, the nation's first birth control clinic was opened in Brooklyn, N.Y., by Margaret Sanger and two other women.
In 1946, at Nuremberg, Germany, 10 high-ranking Nazi officials were executed by hanging for their crimes against humanity, crimes against peace, and war crimes during World War II. Hermann Goering, founder of the Gestapo and chief of the German air force, was to have been among them but he committed suicide in his cell the night before.
In 1964, China detonated its first atomic bomb.
In 1972, a light plane carrying House Democratic leader Hale Boggs of Louisiana and three other men was reported missing in Alaska. The plane was never found.
In 1984, black Anglican Bishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa won the Nobel Peace Prize for his struggle against apartheid.
In 1989, the New York stock market bounced back from staggering losses, with the Dow gaining more than 88 points after a 190-point plunge on Friday the 13th.
In 1991, George Hennard killed 22 people and then took his own life after driving his pickup truck through the front window of Luby's Cafeteria in Killeen, Texas. It was the worst mass shooting in U.S. history.
In 1992, Attorney General Barr appointed an independent counsel to investigate congressional charges of administration wrongdoing in the case of an Iraqi loan by an Atlanta bank.
In 1994, German Chancellor Helmut Kohl retained his office in parliamentary elections -- but just barely.
In 1995, hundreds of thousands of black men from across the nation gathered at the Mall in Washington, D.C, to take part in the "Million Man March."
In 1996, during the second presidential debate, President Clinton was asked if Bob Dole was too old to be president. Clinton replied, "It's the age of his ideas that I question."
In 1998, Protestant David Trimble and Roman Catholic John Hume, both political leaders in Northern Ireland, were named as co-winners of the 1998 Nobel Peace Prize for their work toward bringing peace to Ulster.
In 2002, President Bush signed into law the joint congressional resolution authorizing him to use military force if necessary to rid Iraq of its suspected weapons of mass destruction. The adminstration hoped the United Nations would take a similar step.
A thought for the day: Irish author and dramatist Oscar Wilde's dying words were said to have been, "This wallpaper is killing me; one of us has got to go."