Today is Thursday, April 13, the 103rd day of 2006 with 262 to follow.
This is the first day of Passover.
The moon is full. The morning stars are Mercury, Venus, Jupiter, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto. The evening stars are Mars and Saturn.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Aries. They include Thomas Jefferson, third president of the United States, in 1743; Frank Woolworth, founder of the five-and-dime stores, in 1852; Alfred Butts, inventor of the game "Scrabble," in 1899; Irish playwright Samuel Beckett in 1906; Harold Stassen, former Minnesota governor who unsuccessfully sought the Republican presidential nomination seven times, in 1907; author Eudora Welty in 1909; actor/singer Howard Keel in 1917; actors Lyle Waggoner in 1935 (age 71), Paul Sorvino in 1939 (age 67) and Tony Dow (Wally on "Leave It To Beaver") in 1945 (age 61); singers the Rev. Al Green in 1946 (age 60) and Peabo Bryson in 1951 (age 55); "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" bandleader and Bruce Springsteeen drummer Max Weinberg also in 1951 (age 55); and actors Ron Perlman in 1950 (age 56) and Rick Schroeder in 1970 (age 36).
On this date in history:
In 1964, Sidney Poitier became the first African-American to win an Oscar for best actor, honored for his work in "Lilies of the Field."
In 1965, Lawrence Bradford Jr., a 16-year-old from New York City, started work as the first black page to serve in either chamber of the U.S. Congress.
In 1972, the first major league baseball strike ended, eight days after it began.
In 1984, Christopher Wilder, the FBI's "most wanted man," accidentally killed himself as police moved in to arrest him in New Hampshire. Wilder was a suspect in the deaths, rapes and disappearances of 11 young women in eight states.
In 1987, the Population Reference Bureau reported that the world's population had exceeded 5 billion.
In 1990, Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev gave Lithuania a 2-day ultimatum, threatening to cut off some supplies to the Baltic republic if it did not rescind laws passed since a March 11 declaration of independence.
In 1991, an advance team of U.N. observers arrive d in Kuwait City to set up a peacekeeping force along the Kuwait-Iraqi border.
In 1992, construction workers breeched a retaining wall in the Chicago River, sending water flooding through a tunnel system connecting buildings in the downtown area.
Also in 1992, Princess Anne, daughter of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, began divorce proceedings after a 2-year separation from Capt. Mark Phillips.
In 1994, five Israelis were killed and another 30 wounded in a suicide bombing in a bus station in Hadera.
In 1997, Tiger Woods, 21, won the Masters Tournament, the youngest golfer to accomplish that feat and first African-American to win any of the four major professional golf tournaments for men.
In 2003, President George W. Bush said Syria had chemical weapons and was accepting Iraqi leaders into the country. Syria denied having weapons of mass destruction and announced later it was closing its borders to fleeing Iraqis.
In 2004, Iraqi kidnappers released three Russian and five Ukrainian engineers hours after they were taken hostage. Earlier, it was announced that several foreigners were kidnapped in Iraq in the past week including one American.
Also in 2004, Vice President Dick Cheney said in Beijing that the United States does not support independence for Taiwan.
In 2005, as part of a deal to avoid the death penalty, Eric Rudolph pleaded guilty to four bombings that killed two people and injured more than 120. Among the attacks were bombings at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta and two abortion clinics. Rudolph was sentenced to life in prison.
A thought for the day: "We cannot hold a torch to light another's path without brightening our own." Ben Sweetmand said that.