The almanac

By United Press International

Today is Wednesday, Aug. 7, the 219th day of 2013 with 146 to follow.

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


Those born on this date are under the sign of Leo. They include Carl Ritter, the German co-founder of modern geographical science, in 1779; the World War I Dutch spy and courtesan known as Mata Hari (Margaret Gertrude Zelle) in 1876; actor Billie Burke in 1884; British archaeologist and anthropologist Louis Leakey in 1903; American statesman and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Ralph J. Bunche in 1904; film director Nicholas Ray in 1911; comedian/producer Stan Freberg in 1926 (age 87); actor Carl Switzer (Alfalfa in the "Our Gang" and "Little Rascals" movie comedies) in 1927; basepall pitcher Don Larsen, who had a perfect game in the 1956 World Series, in 1929 (age 84); singer B.J. Thomas and humorist Garrison Keillor, both in 1942 (age 71); FBI Director Robert Mueller in 1944 (age 69); football Hall of Fame member and Minnesota Supreme Court Justice Alan Page in 1945 (age 68); and actors John Glover in 1944 (age 69), Wayne Knight in 1955 (age 58); David Duchovny in 1960 (age 53) and Charlize Theron in 1975 (age 38).


On this date in history:

In 1782, the Order of the Purple Heart was established by Gen. George Washington to honor Americans who fought in the Revolutionary War.

In 1942, U.S. Marines launched America's first offensive in World War II, landing on the Pacific island of Guadalcanal.

In 1959, the satellite Explorer 6 transmitted man's first view of Earth from space.

In 1963, Jacqueline Kennedy became the first wife of a president since the days of Grover Cleveland to give birth while in the White House. The infant, a boy, died two days later.

In 1998, bombs detonated within minutes of each other outside U.S. embassy buildings in Nairobi, Kenya, and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, killing 224 people.

In 2001, Uribe Velez was sworn in as president of Colombia in ceremonies interrupted by rebel shelling that killed 15 people and wounded 60.

In 2005, Peter Jennings, anchor and senior editor of ABC News "World News Tonight," who said in April he had lung cancer, died at his New York home at age 67.

In 2007, Barry Bonds hit his 756th major league home run, breaking the record set by Hank Aaron.

In 2008, a long-standing dispute between Russia and Georgia provinces of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, which sought independence, erupted into a full-blown war.


In 2010, the Taliban claimed responsibility for killing 10 members of a medical charity team -- six of them Americans -- in a remote forest in Afghanistan.

In 2012, Jared Lee Loughner pleaded guilty to murder and attempted murder in Tucson shootings that killed six people and wounded 13, including U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. Under his plea agreement, Loughner is imprisoned for life without parole and no opportunity to appeal.

A thought for the day: W.C. Fields said, "Anyone who hates children and dogs can't be all bad."

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