The Almanac

By United Press International  |  Oct. 11, 2003 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Saturday, Oct. 11, the 284th day of 2003 with 81 to follow.

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

Those born on this date are under the sign of Virgo. They include clergyman Mason Locke Weems, who invented the story of George Washington and the cherry tree, in 1759; Englishman George Williams, founder of the YMCA, in 1821; food industry pioneer Henry John Heinz in 1844; first lady and author Eleanor Roosevelt in 1884; choreographer Jerome Robbins in 1918 (age 85); country singer Dottie West in 1932; actor Roy Scheider in 1935 (age 68); actor/singer Rob Leibman in 1937 (age 66); singer Daryl Hall in 1949 (age 54); and actors David Morse in 1953 (age 50, Joan Cusack in 1962 (age 41) and Luke Perry in 1966 (age 39.

On this date in history:

In 1811, the first steam-powered ferry in the world started its run between New York City and Hoboken, N.J.

In 1868, Thomas Alva Edison filed papers for his first invention: an electrical vote recorder to rapidly tabulate floor votes in Congress. Members of Congress rejected it.

In 1950, the Federal Communications Commission issued to CBS the first license to broadcast color television.

In 1962, Pope John XXIII opened the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council in St. Peter's Basilica in Rome.

In 1984, financier Marc Rich agreed to pay the U.S. government nearly $200 million, the biggest tax fraud penalty in U.S. history.

In 1991, the UN Security Council passed a resolution barring Iraq from pursuing any atomic programs.

In 1992, President Bush, Bill Clinton and Ross Perot squared off in St. Louis for the first presidential debate of the 1992 political campaign.

In 1993, armed demonstrators in Port au Prince, Haiti, prevented U.S and Canadian troops from landing.

In 1994, the Pentagon reported that Iraqi troops were withdrawing from the Iraq-Kuwait border. Their deployment had brought the U.S. Navy and Marines to the Persian Gulf less than a week earlier.

Also in 1994, the Colorado Supreme Court struck down a law that barred local governments from enacting laws protecting homosexuals from discrimination in employment and housing.

In 1996, the Nobel Peace Prize went to Jose Ramos-Harta and Carlos Ximenes Belo, who work for freedom for East Timor, Indonesia, where famine and repression had killed one-third of the entire population.

In 2000, in the second televised presidential debate, Vice President Al Gore and his Republican challenger, Texas Gov. George W. Bush, seemed to agree more than they disagreed in an event more closely resembling a cordial conversation.

In 2002, Congress gave President Bush its backing for using military force against Iraq.

A thought for the day: in her diary, Anne Frank wrote, "If God lets me live, I shall attain more than Mummy ever has done. I shall not remain insignificant. I shall work in the world and for mankind!"

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