The almanac

United Press International

Today is Monday, Aug. 19, the 231st day of 2013 with 134 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 English poet John Dryden in 1631; clockmaker Seth Thomas in 1785; statesman Bernard Baruch in 1870; aviation pioneer Orville Wright in 1871; French fashion designer Coco Chanel in 1883; actor Alfred Lunt in 1892; humorist Ogden Nash in 1902; pioneer television engineer Philo Farnsworth in 1906; singing Mills Brother Harry Mills in 1913; writer Ring Lardner Jr., in 1915; publisher Malcolm Forbes in 1919; "Star Trek" creator Gene Roddenberry in 1921; writer Frank McCourt in 1930; jockey Willie Shoemaker in 1931; actors Diana Muldaur in 1938 (age 75) and Jill St. John in 1940 (age 73); Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member Ginger Baker (Cream) in 1939 (age 74); singer Johnny Nash in 1940 (age 73); former U.S. senator and actor Fred Thompson in 1942 (age 71); Bill Clinton, 42nd president of the United States, in 1946 (age 67); political commentator Mary Matalin in 1953 (age 60); and actors Gerald McRaney in 1947 (age 66), Jonathan Frakes in 1952 (age 61), Peter Gallagher in 1955 (age 58), Adam Arkin in 1956 (age 57), John Stamos in 1963 (age 50), Kyra Sedgwick in 1965 (age 48) and Matthew Perry in 1969 (age 44).


On this date in history:

During the War of 1812, the U.S. Navy frigate Constitution defeated the British frigate Guerriere in a furious engagement off the coast of Nova Scotia and earned its nickname of "Old Ironsides." Witnesses said British shots seemed to bounce off its sides.

In 1915, nearly 1,200 people were killed when a German U-boat torpedoed the British liner Lusitania in the Atlantic Ocean.

In 1960, U-2 spy plane pilot Francis Gary Powers was convicted in a Moscow court and sentenced to 10 years in prison. He was released 18 months later and exchanged for Soviet spy Rudolf Abel.

In 1987, gun enthusiast Michael Ryan went on a shooting rampage in Hungerford, England, killing 16 people.

In 1992, delegates to the Republican National Convention nominated President George H.W. Bush and Vice President Dan Quayle for re-election. They were defeated in November by Democrats Bill Clinton and Al Gore.

In 1994, U.S. President Bill Clinton announced he was ending the 28-year U.S. policy of letting Cuban refugees take up U.S. residency if they reached the country.

In 1995, three U.S. negotiators, including U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Robert Frasure, were killed when their vehicle plunged from a mountain road near Sarajevo, Bosnia.


In 1996, the Green Party nominated Ralph Nader as its presidential candidate.

In 2003, a suicide bomber exploded a device aboard a Jerusalem bus, killing and injuring more than 100 people.

In 2004, the price of oil hit a record high of $48.70 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

In 2007, intense heat gripping the U.S. Midwest and South contributed to the deaths of at least 47 people. Memphis endured the brunt with 10 dead.

In 2008, the resignation of Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf was followed by insurgent bombing attacks that killed about 100 people.

In 2009, two massive bomb attacks killed at least 95 people and wounded more than 600 others in Baghdad. It was said to be the worst attack in the region since the U.S. military gave control of the country's security back to the Iraqi government.

In 2010, baseball pitching star Roger Clemens was indicted on federal charges he lied to the U.S. Congress about his use of performance-enhancing drugs.

In 2012, Todd Akin, Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate in Missouri, was quoted as saying pregnancy is "really rare" in rape cases and if "it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down." Akin lost in by a wide martin in the general election.


A thought for the day: Walter C. Hagen said: "You're only here for a short visit. Don't hurry. Don't worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way."

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