Today is Wednesday, Oct. 3, the 277th day of 2012 with 89 to follow.
The moon is waning. Morning stars are Venus and Jupiter. Evening stars are Mercury, Neptune, Saturn, Uranus and Mars.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Libra. They include Cherokee Chief John Ross, who led opposition to the forced move of his people to what is now Oklahoma, in 1790; historian George Bancroft in 1800; actor Warner Oland ("Charlie Chan") in 1879;
German pacifist and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Cal von Ossietzky in 1889; writers Thomas Wolfe in 1900, James Herriot in 1916 and Gore Vidal in 1925 ; hockey Hall of Fame member Glenn Hall in 1931 (age 81); rock 'n' roll Hall of Fame member Eddie Cochran in 1938; rock 'n' roll singer Chubby Checker in 1941 (age 71); rock 'n' roll Hall of Fame member Lindsey Buckingham in 1949 (age 63); activist Rev. Al Sharpton (age 58) and guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan, both in 1954; actor/singer Jack Wagner in 1959 (age 53); rock drummer Tommy Lee in 1962 (age 50); actors Clive Owen in 1964 (age 48) and Neve Campbell in 1973 (age 39); and singers India.Arie in 1975 (age 37) and Ashlee Simpson-Wentz in 1984 (age 28).
On this date in history:
In 1922, Rebecca Felton, a Georgia Democrat, became the first woman to serve in the U.S. Senate.
In 1932, Iraq won its independence after Britain ended its mandate following 17 years of British rule.
In 1952, Britain successfully tested its first atomic bomb.
In 1955, the children's TV show "Captain Kangaroo" with Bob Keeshan in the title role was broadcast for the first time.
In 1967, folksinger and songwriter Woody Guthrie died at the age of 55.
In 1972, U.S. President Richard Nixon and Soviet Foreign Minister Andrei Gromyko signed strategic arms limitation agreements, putting the first restrictions on the two countries' nuclear weapons.
In 1981, IRA prisoners at Maze Prison in Belfast, Northern Ireland, ended a seven-month hunger strike in which 10 men died.
In 1989, troops loyal to Panamanian military leader Manuel Noriega crushed a coup attempt by rebel mid-level officers. Noriega was held briefly by coup plotters but escaped unharmed.
In 1990, formerly communist East Germany merged with West Germany, ending 45 years of post-war division.
In 1992, William Gates III, the college-dropout founder of Microsoft Corp., headed the Forbes magazine list of the 400 richest Americans with a net worth of $6.3 billion.
In 1993, fighting erupted in the streets of Moscow between pro- and anti-Yeltsin forces. Sixty-two people died in the violence that ended two days later when the rebel vice president and speaker of Parliament surrendered.
Also in 1995, a bomb nearly killed the president of Macedonia, a relatively peaceful part of the former Yugoslavia.
In 2001, amid rising concerns about the use of lethal substances by terrorists, the U.S. government said it was planning to stockpile 40 million doses of smallpox vaccine.
In 2002, fear escalated in the Washington area as five people were killed over a 16-hour period in apparent random sniper shootings.
In 2005, a Texas grand jury indicted U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay, R-Texas, the former House of Representatives majority leader, for money laundering. The indictment was aimed at correcting problems with an earlier charge against him.
In 2007, U.S. President George W. Bush vetoed a bill that would have increased funding of the State Children's Health Insurance Program to provide health coverage to more than 10 million children. Bush said the proposal was a move toward universal healthcare, which he opposed.
In 2008, U.S. President George W. Bush signed the $700 billion bailout bill into law.
Also in 2008, Wachovia National Bank, which would later report a record third-quarter loss of $23.7 billion, agreed to be purchased by Wells Fargo for $15.4 billion.
And, O.J. Simpson and a co-defendant were convicted of armed robbery and kidnapping in connection with a 2007 Las Vegas incident. Simpson and five others were charged with stealing sports memorabilia from two collectibles dealers.
In 2009, General Motors announced it was closing its Saturn line of cars.
Also in 2009, the 27-nation European Union, with unanimous support after Irish voters backed the project, planned to name a full-time president and strengthen its foreign ministry.
In 2010, Dilma Rousseff narrowly missed the necessary 50 percent to become Brazil's next president and was forced into an Oct. 31 runoff with Jose Serra.
In 2011, Amanda Knox, a U.S. exchange student from Seattle convicted with her boyfriend of sexually assaulting and murdering her British roommate at an Italian college, was set free after serving four years of a 26-year sentence when their convictions were overturned on appeal.
Also in 2011, Iraqi security forces rescued 13 hostages following an attack by gunmen on a facility west of Baghdad that killed 10 people. Five of the attackers were slain.
A thought for the day: American poet Emily Dickinson wrote,
"Behold this little Bane --
"The Boon of all alive --
"As common as it is known
"The name of it is Love."