The Almanac

United Press International

Today is Monday, Sept. 27, the 271st day of 2004 with 95 to follow.

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


Those born on this date are under the sign of Virgo. They include patriot Samuel Adams in 1722; political cartoonist Thomas Nast in 1840; composers Joseph McCarthy ("You Made Me Love You") in 1885 and Vincent Youmans ("Tea for Two") in 1898; filmmaker Arthur Penn in 1922 (age 82); actors William Conrad in 1920, Jayne Meadows in 1926 (age 78), Sada Thompson in 1929 (age 75), and Wilford Brimley in 1934 (age 70); actor Greg Morris also in 1934; and actor/singer Shaun Cassidy in 1958 (age 46).

On this date in history:

In 1825, in England, George Stephenson operated the first locomotive to pull a passenger train.


In 1935, 13-year-old Judy Garland signed her first contract with MGM.

In 1939, after 19 days of heavy air raids and artillery bombardment, the Polish defenders of Warsaw surrendered to the Germans.

In 1954, "The Tonight Show" made its television debut with host Steve Allen.

In 1964, the Warren Commission report on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy was released after a 10-month investigation, concluding that there was no conspiracy and that Lee Harvey Oswald, the alleged assassin, acted alone.

In 1987, mudslides in slum areas of Medellin, Colombia, killed up to 500 people.

In 1991, President Bush announced the United States would unilaterally eliminate tactical nuclear weapons on land and at sea in Europe and Asia.

Also in 1991, the PLO legislature voted to support U.S.- and Soviet-sponsored Middle East peace efforts.

In 1992, the Inkatha party, rival to Nelson Mandela's ANC, withdrew from talks with the South African government after a meeting between Mandela and President de Klerk.

In 1993, in the wake of the Branch Davidian siege near Waco, Texas, the head of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, Stephen Higgins, announced his resignation.


In 1994, U.S. forces in Haiti took control of the parliament building and began paying Haitians to turn in weapons in order to reduce firepower on the streets.

In 1996, rebels seized control of Afghanistan from the previous rebel group that had taken the country back from Moscow's control. The new rebels hanged Afghani leader Najibullah and his brother.

In 1998, Hurricane Georges struck the Gulf Coast, spawning tornadoes and bringing heavy rains and flooding to parts of the South.

Also in 1998, Gerhard Schroder led Germany's Social Democratic Party to victory in parliamentary elections, bringing to an end 16 years of power by Chancellor Helmut Kohl and his Christian Democratic Party.

And in 1998, St. Louis Cardinal slugger Mark McGwire set an all-time major-league season home run record when he hit his 70th home run.

On this date in 2001, in further steps following the terrorist attacks on the U.S., President Bush asked governors to assign National Guard troops to help protect commercial airports and said armed sky marshals in plainclothes would soon begin riding some flights.

In 2002, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said the U.S. had solid evidence of links between al-Quaida and the Iraqi government.


In 2003, President Bush and Russian President Putin said they would join forces to oppose nuclear proliferation in Iran and North Korea.

Also in 2003, Donald O'Connor, the song and dance man who could act and make audiences laugh, died of heart failure at the age of 78.

A thought for the day: in "The Republic," Greek philosopher Plato wrote, "The direction in which education starts a man will determine his future life."

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