Today is Wednesday, Oct. 27, the 301st day of 2004 with 65 to follow.
The moon is waxing. The morning stars are Jupiter, Saturn, Venus and Mars. The evening stars are Mercury, Pluto, Uranus and Neptune.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Scorpio. They include Dutch scholar Desiderius Erasmus in 1466; English explorer Captain James Cook in 1728; Italian violin virtuoso Niccolo Paganini in 1782; Isaac Singer, developer of the first practical home sewing machine, in 1811; Theodore Roosevelt, 26th president of the United States, in 1858; etiquette arbiter Emily Post in 1872; longtime "Tonight Show" producer/director Fred De Cordova in 1910; Welsh poet Dylan Thomas in 1914; actresses Nanette Fabray in 1920 (age 84) and Ruby Dee in 1924 (age 80); pop artist Roy Lichtenstein in 1923; former Secretary of State Warren Christopher in 1925 (age 79); pop pianist Floyd Cramer in 1933; comedian John Cleese in 1939 (age 65); filmmaker Ivan Reitman in 1949 (age 55); actors Carrie Snodgress in 1945 (age 59), Roberto Benigni ("Life Is Beautiful") in 1952 (age 52), and Robert Picardo ("Star Trek: Voyager") in 1953 (age 51); singer Simon LeBon in 1958 (age 46); and Marla Maples, the second ex-Mrs. Donald Trump, in 1963 (age 41).
On this date in history:
In 1659, William Robinson and Marmaduke Stevenson, two Quakers who came from England in 1656 to escape religious persecution, were executed in the Massachusetts Bay Colony for their outlawed religious beliefs.
In 1787, a New York newspaper published the first of 77 essays explaining the new Constitution and urging its ratification, written by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison and John Jay and later combined as "The Federalist Papers."
In 1795, a treaty with Spain settled Florida's northern boundary and gave navigation rights on the Mississippi River to the United States.
In 1904, the first rapid transit subway system in America opened in New York City.
In 1946, the travel show "Geographically Speaking," sponsored by Bristol-Myers, became the first television program with a commercial sponsor.
In 1981, the National Labor Relations Board withdrew recognition of the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization for an illegal strike by its members.
In 1990, the Senate gave final congressional approval to a budget that would cut about $500 billion over five years.
In 1991, Poland held its first fully free parliamentary elections.
In 1992, Israeli tanks rolled into Lebanon as air force jets staged renewed raids in an effort to crush Muslim fundamentalist guerrillas.
In 1993, President Clinton and First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton presented Congress with the administration's new plan for health-care reform in a ceremony at the Capitol.
Also in 1993, Southern California was hit by dozens of brush fires -- the worst in six years. Hundreds of homes were destroyed and thousands of people were forced to flee the flames.
In 1994, the Justice Department announced that the U.S. prison population topped the one-million mark for the first time in history.
In 1998, Hurricane Mitch, one of the strongest Atlantic storms ever recorded, began its four-day siege of Central America, causing at least 10,000 deaths.
In 2002, diplomatic sources said the immobilizing gas Russian officials used to free hundreds of hostages from the Chechen-held Moscow theatre was responsible for the deaths of at least two of the 118 hostages killed in the rescue mission. Officials said the gas was not the sole cause of any deaths.
In 2002 sports, the underdog Anaheim Angels defeated the San Francisco Giants, 4-1, in the seventh game to capture the World Series championship in their first shot at the big prize.
In 2003, as many as 40 civilians and U.S. soldiers were killed in a flurry of terrorist bombings in Baghdad. Among the targets was the 3-story headquarters of the International Committee of the Red Cross.
A thought for the day: President Theodore Roosevelt said, "The first requisite of a good citizen in this Republic of ours if that he shall be able and willing to pull his weight."