The Almanac

By United Press International  |  April 6, 2003 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Sunday, April 6, the 96th day of 2003 with 269 to follow.

Daylight saving time begins at 2 a.m.

The moon is waxing.

The morning stars are Venus, Mars, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto. The evening stars are Mercury, Jupiter and Saturn.

Those born on this date are under the sign of Aries. They include newspaper editor Joseph Medill in 1823; journalist Lincoln Steffens in 1866; actor Walter Huston in 1884; radio commentator Lowell Thomas in 1892; baseball Hall-of-Famer Gordon "Mickey" Cochrane in 1903; geneticist James Watson in 1928 (age 74); musician Andre Previn in 1929 (age 74); country singer Merle Haggard and actor Billy Dee Williams, both in 1937 (age 66); producer/director Barry Levinson in 1942 (age 61); singer/actress Michelle Phillips in 1944 (age 59); and actors John Ratzenberger ("Cheers") in 1947 (age 56), Marilu Henner ("Taxi") in 1952 (age 51) and Candace Cameron ("Full House") in 1976 (age 27).

On this date in history:

In 1830, the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-Day Saints was founded in a log cabin in Fayette, N.Y.

In 1851, Portland, Ore., was founded.

In 1868, Morman Church leader Brigham Young married his 27th, and last, wife.

In 1896, the first modern Olympics formally opened at Athens, Greece, after a 1,500-year hiatus.

In 1909, Robert E. Peary and co-explorer Matthew Henson reached the North Pole.

In 1917, the United States declared war on Germany, propelling the United States into World War I.

In 1931, nine black youths accused of raping two white women went on trial in Scottsboro, Ala. All were convicted in a hasty trial, but by 1950 were free by parole, appeal or escape.

In 1938, Du Pont researchers Roy Plunkett and Jack Rebok accidentally created the chemical compound that was later marketed as Teflon.

In 1947, the first Tony Awards, honoring distinguished work in the theater, were presented in New York City.

In 1968, federal troops and National Guardsmen were ordered out in Chicago, Washington, D.C., and Detroit, as rioting continued over the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.

In 1991, Iraq's parliament accepted a permanent cease-fire in the Gulf War.

In 1992, science fiction patriarch Isaac Asimov died after lengthy illness. He was 72.

In 1993, testimony concluded in the federal trial of four Los Angeles police officers charged with violating Rodney King's civil rights during his 1991 arrest. (Two of the officers would eventually be convicted.)

In 1994, the presidents of the African nations of Rwanda and Burundi were killed in a plane crash in the capital city of Rwanda. The incident triggered bloody fighting between the Hutu and Tutsi ethnic groups that ultimately left hundreds of thousands of people dead.

Also in 1994, Justice Harry A. Blackmun, who had served on the U.S. Supreme Court since being chosen by President Nixon in 1970, announced his retirement.

In 1996, rioting broke out in Liberia following the arrest of factional leader Roosevelt Johnson on murder charges.

In 1998, federal health officials announced that tamoxifen, a synthetic hormone, prevented breast cancer in women at high risk.

In 1999, in the first state referendum of its kind, voters in Missouri voted 52 to 48 percent against a proposal to allow the carrying of concealed weapons. The National Rifle Association reportedly had spent $4 million in support of the referendum.

In 2000, the father of Cuban refugee Elian Gonzalez arrived in the United States to take custody of his six-year-old son.

In 2001, the Senate approved a $1.2 trillion tax cut over 10 years, somewhat less than the $1.6 trillion passed by the House and advocated by President Bush.

Also in 2001, a federal jury in Los Angeles convicted an Algerian man on charges stemming from his arrest at the U.S.-Canadian border in December 1999. Prosecutors said Ahmen Ressam was planning to set off explosions during the millennium celebrations.

A thought for the day: Mahatma Gandhi said, "You must be the change you wish to see in the world."

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