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The almanac

By United Press International   |   June 14, 2008 at 3:30 AM   |   Comments

Today is Saturday, June 14, the 166th day of 2008 with 200 to follow.

Today is Flag Day in the United States.

The moon is waxing. The morning stars are Neptune, Mercury, Jupiter and Uranus. The evening stars are Venus, Mars and Saturn.

Those born on this date are under the sign of Gemini. They include Harriet Beecher Stowe, author of "Uncle Tom's Cabin" in 1811; bookseller John Bartlett, compiler of "Bartlett's Familiar Quotations," in 1820; Wisconsin Gov. Robert La Follette in 1855; singer, composer Cliff Edwards (also the voice of Jiminy Cricket in Disney's "Pinocchio") in 1895; photojournalist Margaret Bourke-White in 1904; actor/folksinger Burl Ives in 1909; actress Dorothy McGuire in 1916; Cuban revolutionary Ernesto "Che" Guevara in 1928; actress Marla Gibbs in 1931 (age 77); real estate mogul Donald Trump, in 1946 (age 62); Olympic gold medal speed skater Eric Heiden in 1958 (age 50); singer Boy George (George O'Dowd) in 1961 (age 47); actress Yasmine Bleeth ("Baywatch") in 1968 (age 40); and tennis star Steffi Graf in 1969 (age 39).


On this date in history:

In 1623, in the first breach of promise suit in the United States, the Rev. Greville Pooley sued Cicely Jordan in Charles City, Va., for jilting him for another man.

In 1775, the Continental Congress established the army as the first U.S. military service.

In 1777, the Star and Stripes became the national U.S. flag.

In 1919, Capt. John Alcock and Lt. Arthur Brown flew a Vickers Vimy bomber 1,900 miles non-stop from St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada, to Clifden, Ireland, for the first non-stop trans-Atlantic flight.

In 1922, Warren G. Harding became the first U.S. president to broadcast a message over the radio. The occasion was the dedication of the Francis Scott Key Memorial in Baltimore.

In 1951, Univac I, the world's first commercial computer, designed for the U.S. Census Bureau, was unveiled.

In 1985, Shiite Muslim gunmen commandeered TWA Flight 847 carrying 153 passengers and crew from Athens to Rome. The ordeal ended 17 days later in Beirut, where one of the hostages, a U.S. sailor, was killed.

In 1990, flash floods around Shadyside, Ohio, killed at least 26 people and damaged or destroyed more than 800 homes in four eastern Ohio counties.

In 1991, NATO and five Eastern European nations approved a compromise, ending a dispute over a U.S.-Soviet treaty limiting conventional armies in Europe.

In 1993, U.S. President Bill Clinton nominated federal Judge Ruth Bader Ginsberg for a seat on the U.S. Supreme Court. She succeeded Justice Byron White.

In 1998, the Chicago Bulls won their sixth NBA title in eight years and third in a row, defeating the Utah Jazz in the championship series.

In 1999, the South African National Assembly elected Thabo Mbeki as president, succeeding the retiring Nelson Mandela. Mbeki had served as deputy president under Mandela.

In 2000, officials of North and South Korea announced an agreement to work for peace and unity and also said they agreed to allow exchange visits by divided families.

In 2002, U.S. Roman Catholic Church leaders adopted new rules for all dioceses calling for removal from active duty of any priest found to have abused a minor and the reporting of accusations to civil authorities.

In 2003, a part of central Tehran, Iran, turned into a combat zone with battles between riot police and those denouncing Iran's Islamic government.

Also in 2003, the Czech Republic voted overwhelmingly to join the European Union.

In 2005, two explosions killed at least 29 people and injured dozens of others in Iraq.

Also in 2005, a majority of the U.S. Senate apologized in a resolution for taking so long to enact anti-lynching laws. Failure to act, the measure said, contributed to the deaths of 4,700 people from 1882 to 1968, most of them black men.

In 2006, as daily acts of violence continued to pound Iraq, insurgents gunned down an Iraqi newspaper editor they had warned not to publish alleged pro-U.S. coalition copy.

In 2007, an internal FBI audit in Washington was reported to have found more than 1,000 incidents in which agents broke the law or agency rules in counter-terrorism since 2002.

Also in 2007, Massachusetts legislators came within five votes of putting the question of same-sex marriage on the November ballot as a constitutional amendment.


A thought for the day: Walt Whitman wrote, "If anything is sacred the human body is sacred."

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