The Almanac

By United Press International  |  March 25, 2007 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Sunday, March 25, the 84th day of 2007 with 281 to follow.

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

Those born on this date are under the sign of Aries. They include symphony conductor Arturo Toscanini in 1867; Mount Rushmore sculptor Gutzon Borglum in 1867; composer Bela Bartok in 1881; film director David Lean in 1908; sports commentator Howard Cosell in 1920; French actress Simone Signoret in 1921; astronaut James Lovell in 1928 (age 79); feminist writer Gloria Steinem in 1935 (age 72); singer Anita Bryant in 1940 (age 67); soul singer Aretha Franklin in 1942 (age 65); actor/director Paul Michael Glaser in 1943 (age 64); pop star Elton John in 1947 (age 60); actresses Bonnie Bedelia in 1948 (age 59) and Sarah Jessica Parker in 1965 (age 42); Olympic silver medalist figure skater Debi Thomas in 1967 (age 40), and race driver Danica Patrick in 1982 (age 25).

On this date in history:

In 1634, the first colonists to Maryland arrive at St. Clement's Island on Maryland's western shore and founded the settlement of St. Mary's.

In 1807, the English Parliament abolished the slave trade.

In 1911, 147 people died when they were trapped by a fire that swept the Triangle Shirt Waist factory in New York City.

In 1947, a mine explosion in Centralia, Ill., killed 111 men, most of them asphyxiated by gas.

In 1954, the Radio Corporation of America began commercial production of color television sets.

In 1957, France, West Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg signed a treaty in Rome establishing the European Economic Community, also known as the common market.

In 1975, King Faisal of Saudi Arabia was shot to death by a deranged nephew in his palace in Riyadh.

In 1990, an arson fire swept an overcrowded, illegal Bronx social club, killing 87 people in the worst mass slaying in U.S. history at the time and the deadliest New York blaze since the Triangle Shirt Waist factory disaster exactly 79 years earlier. Julio Gonzalez, 36, was charged with arson and murder.

In 1992, in a further sign of the capitalist revolution, veterans of the former Soviet KGB announced plans to sell cloak-and-dagger tales to Hollywood for movies and TV.

In 1994, the last U.S. soldiers left Mogadishu, Somalia, although a handful remained behind to protect U.S. diplomats and to provide support for U.N. peacekeepers.

In 1996, the FBI surrounded the Montana compound of a tax-evading group called the Freemen, beginning a lengthy standoff.

In 1997, Chinese Premiere Li Peng, during a meeting in Beijing with U.S. Vice President Al Gore, denied reports that China had funneled campaign cash to the Clinton-Gore campaign.

In 1998, the first known physician-assisted suicide to be legal under Oregon state law was reported by the group Compassion In Dying.

In 2002, a massive earthquake devastated rural areas of Afghanistan. The quake, with a 6.1 magnitude, killed at least 600.

In 2004, a U.S. Army report said less than one-third of U.S. soldiers suffering from depression, anxiety or traumatic stress after combat in Iraq received mental health treatment. Officials were looking into 23 U.S. suicides.

In 2006, an estimated 500,000 people protested in Los Angeles against proposed U.S. legislation that would make it a felony to be in the United States illegally.

A thought for the day: Mahatma Gandhi said, "It is better to be violent, if there is violence in our hearts, than to put on the cloak of nonviolence to cover impotence."

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