The Almanac

By United Press International  |  March 6, 2004 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Saturday, March 6, the 66th day of 2004 with 300 to follow.

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

Those born on this date are under the sign of Pisces. They include Italian painter and sculptor Michelangelo in 1475; French dramatist Cyrano de Bergerac in 1619; English poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning in 1806; Union Army Gen. Philip Sheridan in 1831; humorist and short story writer Ring Lardner in 1885; Texas swing bandleader Bob Wills in 1905; comic actor Lou Costello in 1908; TV personality Ed McMahon in 1923 (age 80); symphony conductor Sarah Caldwell in 1924 (age 79); Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan in 1926 (age 77); Mercury astronaut L. Gordon Cooper in 1927 (age 76); former Washington, D.C., mayor Marion Barry in 1936 (age 67); actor Ben Murphy in 1942 (age 61); actor/director Rob Reiner in 1946 (age 57); actor Tom Arnold in 1959 (age 44); and basketball player Shaquille O'Neal in 1972 (age 31).

On this date in history:

In 1836, Mexican forces captured the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas, killing the last of 187 defenders who had held out in the fortified mission for 13 days. Famous frontiersman Davy Crockett was among those killed on the final day.

In 1857, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its landmark ruling that black slave Dred Scott could not sue for his freedom in a federal court, even though his white master had died in a "free" state.

In 1944, during World War II, American bombers flying from Britain began the first daytime attacks on Berlin.

In 1982, an Egyptian court sentenced five Moslem fundamentalists to death for the assassination of President Anwar Sadat. 17 others were sentenced to prison.

In 1987, an earthquake and flood in northeastern Ecuador killed more than 300 people and ruptured a main oil pipeline.

Also in 1987, the British car ferry The Herald of Free Enterprise capsized off Zeebrugge, Belgium, killing at least 189 of some 540 people aboard.

In 1990, an attempted coup against Afghan President Najibullah failed.

In 1991, President Bush declared the Persian Gulf War over.

In 1992, the long-awaited, much-feared Michelangelo virus struck around the world, but appeared not to be the data disaster some had predicted.

In 2000, a federal jury convicted three New York City police officers of covering up the brutal assault on Abner Louima in a police station men's room in 1997.

In 2002, Robert Ray, who succeeded Kenneth Starr as special prosecutor, said there was sufficient evidence to convict President Clinton of perjury and obstruction of justice in the Monica Lewinski case. But, he said Clinton had agreed to admit he gave false testimony under oath and with that avoided prosecution, apparently ending his legal troubles in the matter.

In 2003, Secretary of State Colin Powell said the United States could lead a coalition of nations that would disarm Iraq with or without UN authority.

Also in 2003, the U.S. Senate approved a United States-Russian agreement whereby each country would reduce their deployed nuclear warheads to between 1,700 and 2,200 by 2012.

And, further in 2003, Democrats blocked President George W. Bush's nomination of Miguel Estrada to the federal appeals court bench.

A thought for the day: Elizabeth Barrett Browning wrote that, "A woman's always younger than a man of equal years."

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