The almanac

By United Press International  |  Aug. 11, 2013 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Sunday, Aug. 11, the 223rd day of 2013 with 142 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 day are under the sign of Leo. They include author Robert Ingersoll in 1833; songwriter Carrie Jacobs Bond ("I Love You Truly") in 1862; art collector Joseph Hirshhorn in 1899; actor Lloyd Nolan in 1902; author Alex Haley in 1921; singer June Hutton in 1920; TV host Mike Douglas in 1925; actor Arlene Dahl, also in 1925 (age 88); European socialite Claus von Bulow in 1926 (age 87); evangelist Jerry Falwell in 1933; columnist Marilyn vos Savant, listed in the Guinness Book of Records as having the world's highest IQ (reported at 228), in 1946 (age 67); pop singer Eric Carmen, formerly of the Raspberries, in 1949 (age 64); Apple computer co-founder Steve Wozniak in 1950 (age 63); professional wrestler/actor Hulk Hogan, born Terry Gene Bollea, in 1953 (age 60); British singer/songwriter Joe Jackson in 1954 (age 59); political commentator David Brooks in 1961 (age 52); and actors Viola Davis in 1965 (age 48) and Chris Hemsworth in 1983 (age 30).

On this date in history:

In 1877, Thomas Edison described the fundamentals of the phonograph to an assistant and instructed him to build the first one.

In 1934, the first group of federal prisoners classified as "most dangerous" arrived at Alcatraz Island, a 22-acre rocky outcrop 1.5 miles offshore in San Francisco Bay.

In 1954, a formal announcement ended the seven-year war in Indochina between France and forces of the communist Viet Minh.

In 1965, riots began in the Watts section of Los Angeles. In six days of violence, 34 people were killed.

In 1984, in an off-air radio voice check picked up by TV cameras, U.S. President Ronald Reagan joked, "My fellow Americans, I'm pleased to tell you today that I've signed legislation that will outlaw Russia forever. We begin bombing in 5 minutes." The Kremlin wasn't amused.

In 1991, a Lebanese militant group the Revolutionary Justice Organization released U.S. hostage Edward Tracy, held captive since October 1986.

In 1993, U.S. President Bill Clinton endorsed the "Brady Bill" handgun control measure and signed an executive order banning the import of semiautomatic assault-style handguns.

In 1994, Major League Baseball players went on strike following the conclusion of the day's games.

In 1997, U.S. President Bill Clinton became the first president to use the line-item veto, a power granted by Congress the year before.

In 1998, two boys were found to be "delinquent," or guilty, of murder in the fatal March shootings of four students and a teacher at their middle school in Jonesboro, Ark.

In 1999, the Kansas State Board of Education voted to drop the theory of evolution from the public school curriculum.

In 2003, as peacekeepers entered Monrovia, the capital of Liberia, to stop fighting between government and rebel troops, President Charles Taylor stepped down and flew into exile in Nigeria.

In 2005, right-wing activists staged one of the biggest demonstrations in Israel's history at Tel Aviv. An estimated 350,000 people protested the impending withdrawal from the Gaza Strip and the evacuation of four settlements in the northern West Bank.

In 2007, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America voted to refrain from disciplining members of the clergy involved in same-sex relationships.

In 2008, German doctors in Munich said they performed the world's first successful double-arm transplant. A 54-year-old German farmer, who had lost both of his arms six years previously, underwent a 15-hour procedure to attach two donor arms to his body.

In 2009, Eunice Kennedy Shriver, younger sister of President John Kennedy, mother of former California first lady Maria Shriver and founder of the Special Olympics, died in a Cape Cod, Mass., hospital. She was 88. She devoted much of her life to raising funds for and awareness of people with mental disabilities.

Also in 2009, a military court in Myanmar, formerly Burma, added 18 months to the house-arrest detention of Nobel Peace Prize laureate and opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi for allowing John Yettaw, an American, into her home after he swam across a lake to reach her.

In 2010, former U.S. Rep Dan Rostenkowski, D-Ill., who rose to be chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee and went to prison in disgrace, died after a long battle with cancer. He was 82.

In 2012, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney introduced U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., as his running mate.

A thought for the day: "Winning is a habit. Unfortunately, so is losing." -- Vince Lombardi.

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