Today is Saturday, Sept. 2, the 245th day of 2006 with 120 to follow.
The moon is waxing. The morning stars are Saturn, Venus and Uranus. The evening stars are Mercury, Neptune, Mars, Jupiter and Pluto.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Virgo. They include poet Eugene Field in 1850; American inventor Hiram Maxim, who invented the first portable automatic machine gun, in 1869; authors Cleveland Amory in 1917 and Allen Drury in 1918; dancer Marge Champion in 1923 (age 83); Christa McAuliffe in 1948, was the school teacher who became an astronaut but was killed when the space shuttle Challenger exploded shortly after liftoff in 1986; also born in 1948, pro football star/sportscaster Terry Bradshaw (age 58); actor Mark Harmon in 1951 (age 55); tennis champion Jimmy Connors in 1952 (age 54); actors Keanu Reeves in 1964 (age 42) and Selma Hayek in 1966 (age 40).
On this date in history:
In 1666, the Great Fire of London began. It destroyed 13,000 houses in four days.
In 1935, one of the worst hurricanes to hit the U.S. mainland ripped through the Florida Keys, killing more than 350 people.
In 1945, Japan signed an unconditional surrender aboard the U.S. battleship Missouri in Tokyo Bay, formally ending World War II.
In 1983, Moscow admitted to the Sept. 1 shooting down of a Korean Air Lines Boeing 747, killing all 269 people aboard, but said the jumbo jet intentionally invaded Soviet air space.
In 1991, the European Community-approved plan to end the civil war in Yugoslavia was accepted by the Yugoslav federal presidency. But federal forces renewed their offensive against Croatia.
In 1992, more than 100 people were killed when earthquake-spawned tidal waves swept Pacific coast villages in Nicaragua.
In 1997, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 257.36 points for its largest one-day point gain, closing at 7,879.
In 1998, a Swissair jetliner en route from New York to Geneva, Switzerland, crashed off the coast of Nova Scotia, Canada. All 229 people aboard were killed.
In 1999, the Clintons bought a home in the New York suburb of Chappaqua for $1.7 million, establishing residency for first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton, planning a run for the U.S. Senate.
In 2004, President George W. Bush accepted the GOP nomination for re-election, promising to build a "safer world and a more hopeful America."
Also in 2004, South Korea acknowledged it conducted secret experiments to enrich uranium to weapons-grade status but said it was solely for the domestic production of nuclear fuel.
In 2005, U.S. President George W. Bush sharply criticized relief efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and pledged the situation would improve. And, the U.S. House gave final approval to an emergency $10.5 billion hurricane relief bill, Bush called it a "small down payment."
Also in 2005, the European Commission called for uniform rules for deporting illegal immigrants and refugees who are denied asylum in member countries, a move that could bring the commission into conflict with Britain and other nations.
A thought for the day: Logan Pearsall Smith said, "There are few sorrows, however poignant, in which a good income is of no avail."