The almanac

By United Press International  |  June 1, 2009 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Monday, June 1, the 152nd day of 2009 with 213 to follow.

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

Those born on this date are under the sign of Gemini. They include Jacques Marquette, Jesuit priest and French explorer of the Mississippi, in 1637; Mormon leader Brigham Young in 1801; bandleader Nelson Riddle in 1921; actress Marilyn Monroe in 1926; actors Andy Griffith in 1926 (age 83), Pat Corley ("Murphy Brown") in 1930, and Edward Woodward, also in 1930 (age 79); crooner Pat Boone in 1934 (age 75); actor Morgan Freeman in 1937 (age 72); actor/comedian Cleavon Little in 1939; actor Rene Auberjonois in 1940 (age 69); actor Jonathan Pryce and rock musician Ron Wood of The Rolling Stones, both in 1947 (age 62); actress Diana Canova ("Soap") in 1953 (age 56); actress Lisa Hartman Black in 1956 (age 53); comedian/actor Mark Curry in 1964 (age 45); and singer Alanis Morissette in 1974 (age 35).

On this date in history:

In 1812, U.S. President James Madison warned Congress that war with Britain was imminent. The War of 1812 started 17 days later.

In 1880, the first public pay telephone began operation in New Haven, Conn.

In 1964, the U.S. Supreme Court banned prayers and Bible teaching in public schools on the constitutional grounds of separation of church and state.

In 1968, Helen Keller, a world-renowned author and lecturer despite being blind and deaf from infancy, died in Westport, Conn., at the age of 87.

In 1973, Greek Prime Minister George Papadopoulos abolished the Greek monarchy and proclaimed Greece a republic with himself as president.

In 1980, the Cable News Network (CNN), TV's first all-news service, went on the air.

In 1990, U.S. President George H.W. Bush and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev agreed to sharp cuts in chemical and nuclear weapons.

Also in 1990, the South African government proposed a bill to scrap the 37-year-old law segregating buses, trains, toilets, libraries, swimming pools and other public amenities.

In 1991, U.S. Secretary of State James Baker and Soviet Foreign Minister Aleksandr Bessmertnykh resolved differences over a conventional weapons reduction treaty.

In 1993, the Guatemalan military, acting in response to appeals from the judiciary and the public, ousted President Jorge Serrano Elias from office.

Also in 1993, President Dobrica Cosic of Yugoslavia was voted out of office by parliament.

In 1997, French parliamentary elections brought parties of the left into power for the first time since 1986.

In 2004, oil prices jumped to a record $42.33 a barrel.

Also in 2004, the Iraq Governing Council chose Ghazi al-Yawer to be the country's president as shells killed 15 near Baghdad's "Green Zone," home of the U.S. Army command and Coalition Authority.

In 2005, Dutch voters joined France in overwhelmingly rejecting the proposed EU constitution.

In 2006, Indonesian authorities raised the Java earthquake death toll to 6,200.

In 2007, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates acknowledged that a U.S. force might remain in Iraq for decades, possibly in some sort of mission to protect the sovereignty of the host nation.

In 2008, the U.S. military announced that fatalities in Iraq in May dropped to 19, the lowest level since the war began in 2003.

A thought for the day: Jean de la Fontaine wrote, "Everyone believes very easily whatever he fears or desires."

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