The almanac

By United Press International  |  Sept. 14, 2011 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Wednesday, Sept. 14, the 257th day of 2011 with 108 to follow.

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

Those born on this date are under the sign of Virgo. They include Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov in 1849; Noel Peace Prize laureate Robert Cecil in 1864; artist and illustrator Charles Dana Gibson, "Gibson Girl" creator, in 1867; Margaret Sanger, American pioneer in the birth control movement, in 1879; film director/producer Hal Wallis in 1898; and actors Jack Hawkins in 1910, Clayton Moore, serial action star of the 1940s who later played the Lone Ranger on television, in 1914, Walter Koenig and Nicol Williamson, both 1936 (age 75); basketball Hall of Fame member Larry Brown in 1940 (age 71); actor Joey Heatherton in 1944 (age 67); actor Sam Neill and rock singer Jon "Bowzer" Bauman, both in 1947 (age 64), actors Mary Crosby in 1959 (age 52) and Faith Ford in 1964 (age 47); Russian President Dmitry Medvedev in 1965 (age 46); actor Kimberly Williams in 1971 (age 40); and singer Amy Winehouse in 1983.

On this date in history:

In 1628, Salem, Mass., focal point of the notorious witch trials of the late 17th century, was founded.

In 1776, the British army entered New York City after defeating the Americans, under Gen. George Washington, at the Battle of Long Island.

In 1847, Mexico City was occupied by the U.S. Army.

In 1901, U.S. President William McKinley died of wounds inflicted by an assassin eight days earlier. He was succeeded by Vice President Theodore Roosevelt.

In 1920, the first live radio dance music was broadcast, carried by a Detroit station and featuring Paul Specht and his orchestra.

In 1959, the Soviet probe Lunik-2 became the first Earth-launched space vehicle to land on the moon.

In 1960, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries founded.

In 1962, Princess Grace of Monaco -- American film actress Grace Kelly -- was killed when her car plunged off a mountain road by the Cote D'Azur. She was 52.

In 1984, Joe Kittinger, 56, left Caribou, Maine, in a 10-story-tall helium balloon to make the first solo trans-Atlantic balloon crossing. He reached the French coast three days later and landed in Italy another day later.

In 1990, Iraqi soldiers stormed the French, Belgian and Canadian diplomatic buildings in Kuwait and briefly detained five diplomats, including a U.S. consul.

In 1991, the South African government, ANC, Inkatha Freedom Party and 20 other anti-apartheid groups signed a peace accord to end black factional violence.

In 1992, the U.S. Senate voted to repeal the so-called gag rule prohibiting healthcare workers at federally financed clinics from telling pregnant patients that abortion is an option.

In 1996, Bosnians elected a three-person collective presidency: one Muslim, one Serb and one Croat.

In 2001, U.S. President George W. Bush proclaimed this to be a day of national mourning and remembrance for those killed in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. The FBI identified the hijackers and said several had taken flying lessons in Florida.

In 2003, an estimated 124 people were reported dead or missing after South Korea was struck by the most powerful typhoon to hit the nation in a century.

In 2004, a massive car bomb killed 47 people and injured more than 100 others in Baghdad, catching mostly conscripts seeking a job in the Iraqi police force.

In 2005, 12 suicide bombings in Baghdad, aimed at Shiites and believed to be carried out by Sunnis, killed 167 people and injured 600.

Also in 2005, Delta Air Lines and Northwest Airlines, the third and fourth largest U.S. air carriers, filed for bankruptcy as the industry reeled under record high jet fuel costs.

In 2006, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation that would provide for a 700-mile fence along the U.S.-Mexico border to control illegal immigration.

In 2007, the CIA reportedly moved to ban water-boarding, a controversial interrogation procedure involving the simulation of drowning, widely viewed as torture.

Also in 2007, former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto said she planned to return to Pakistan from exile in October to "bring back true democracy."

In 2008, The U.S. brokerage firm Merrill Lynch agreed to sell itself to Bank of America for $50 billion and Lehman Brothers declared bankruptcy after it failed to find a buyer.

In 2009, shortly after the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States, an audiotape supposedly from Osama bin Laden again told Americans their support of Israel had led to the assault.

In 2010, the French government faced international criticism over closing of gypsy camps and expulsion of thousands to Romania and Bulgaria and for backing

legislation to ban face-hiding clothing worn by some Muslim women.

In 2010 sports, Reggie Bush, a former University of Southern California football star, returned his 2005 Heisman Trophy after USC was heavily penalized by the NCAA on charges Bush and his family received improper gifts while he was in school.

A thought for the day: John Kenneth Galbraith wrote: "The salary of the chief executive of a large corporation is not a market award for achievement. It is frequently in the nature of a warm personal gesture by the individual to himself."

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