Today is Saturday, March 26, the 85th day of 2005 with 280 to follow. The moon is waning. The morning stars are Jupiter, Venus, Mars, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto. The evening stars are Mercury and Saturn.
Those born on this date in history are under the sign of Aries. They include poet Robert Frost in 1874; playwright Tennessee Williams in 1911; French composer/conductor Pierre Boulez in 1925 (age 80); U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor in 1930 (age 75); actors Leonard Nimoy in 1931 (age 74), Alan Arkin in 1934 (age 71) and James Caan in 1939 (age 66); author Erica Jong in 1942 (age 63); journalist Bob Woodward in 1943 (age 62); singers Diana Ross in 1944 (age 61) and Teddy Pendergrass in 1950 (age 55); actors Vicki Lawrence in 1949 (age 56) and Martin Short in 1950 (age 55); TV personality Leeza Gibbons in 1957 (age 48); and actress Jennifer Grey in 1960 (age 45).
On this date in history:
In 1859, astronomers reported sighting a new planet in an orbit near that of Mercury. They named it Vulcan. It's now believed to have been a "rogue asteroid" making a one-time pass close to the sun.
In 1953, American medical researcher Dr. Jonas Salk announced on a national radio show that he had successfully tested a vaccine against poliomyelitis, the virus that causes the crippling disease of polio.
In 1971, East Pakistan achieved independence as Bangladesh.
In 1975, the city of Hue in South Vietnam fell to the North Vietnamese army.
In 1979, Israel and Egypt signed a peace treaty at the White House, ending 30 years of hostilities. Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat gave President Carter credit for the so-called Camp David agreement.
In 1991, Mali's dictator was overthrown in violent overnight military coup; 59 people died.
Also in 1991, the Pakistani hijackers of a Singapore Airlines jet were killed by government commandos in Singapore; the passengers and crew members were safe.
In 1992, former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson was sentenced to six years in prison for raping a teenage beauty pageant contestant.
Also in 1992, Soviet cosmonaut Serge Krikalev, after spending 313 days in orbit aboard the Mir space station, returned to Earth a citizen of a new country, Russia. While he was in space, the Soviet Union had crumbled.
In 1993, an emergency meeting of Russia's Congress of People's Deputies, called into session by an impeachment-minded parliament, backed away from a bid to unseat President Yeltsin.
Also in 1993, a man armed with a small-caliber rifle opened fire along a rural highway outside Seattle, killing one man and wounding six others before police shot and critically wounded him.
And in 1993, a "frustrated" taxpayer blasted his way into the IRS state headquarters in Sacramento, Calif., taking several workers hostage before a police SWAT team killed him.
In 1996, Republican presidential hopeful Bob Dole won the California GOP primary and enough delegates for a first-ballot nomination.
In 1997, 39 members of the Heaven's Gate religious cult were found dead in a large house in Rancho Mirage, Calif., in an apparent mass suicide.
In 1998, President Clinton became the first U.S. president to visit South Africa.
In 1999, Dr. Jack Kevorkian, the euthanasia advocate, was convicted of second-degree murder in an Oakland County, Mich., courtroom for the videotaped "medicide" of a man suffering from Lou Gehrig's disease.
In 2000, acting Russian President Vladimir Putin was elected president by a more than 20 percent margin.
In 2003, fierce hand-to-hand combat with bayonets broke out between Iraqi citizens and Saddam Fedayeen in the southern city of Basra. Meanwhile, more than 1,000 soldiers parachuted into northern Iraq seeking to unite the anti-Saddam Kurds.
In 2004, an Arizona judge sentenced Roman Catholic Bishop Thomas O'Brien to 4 years probation for the hit-and-run death of a jaywalking pedestrian.
A thought for the day: "There is nobody so irritating as somebody with less intelligence and more sense than we have." Don Herold said that.