Today is Thursday, Oct. 24, the 297th day of 2013 with 68 to follow.
The moon is waning. The morning stars are Jupiter and Mars. The evening stars are Mercury, Neptune, Saturn, Uranus and Venus.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Scorpio. They include pioneering Dutch microscope maker Anton Van Leeuwenhoek in 1632; journalist Sarah Josepha Hale, author of "Mary Had a Little Lamb," in 1788; attorney Belva Lockwood, the first woman candidate for U.S. president, nominated by the National Equal Rights Party, in 1830; film producer-director Merian Cooper (the original "King Kong") in 1893; playwright Moss Hart in 1904; cartoonist Bob Kane, creator of Batman, in 1915; football Hall of Fame member Y.A. Tittle in 1926 (age 87); entertainer J.P. "The Big Bopper" Richardson in 1930; former Rolling Stone Bill Wyman in 1936 (age 77); former NAACP President Kweisi Mfume in 1948 (age 65); actors David Nelson in 1936, F. Murray Abraham in 1939 (age 74) and Kevin Kline in 1947 (age 66); singer Monica (Arnold) in 1980 (age 33); model Tila Tequila in 1981 (age 32); and English soccer player Wayne Rooney in 1985 (age 28).
On this date in history:
In 1648, the Treaty of Westphalia ended the Thirty Years' War in Europe.
In 1861, the first telegram was transmitted across the United States from California Chief Justice Stephen Field to U.S. President Abraham Lincoln in Washington.
In 1901, daredevil Annie Edson Taylor became the first person to go over Niagara Falls in a barrel.
In 1945, following Soviet ratification, U.S. Secretary of State James Byrnes announced the U.N. Charter was in effect, less than two months after the end of World War II.
In 1984, the FBI arrested 11 alleged chiefs of the Colombo crime family on charges of racketeering in New York City.
In 1989, TV evangelist Jim Bakker was sentenced to 45 years in prison and fined $500,000 for fleecing his flock.
In 1993, the death of Burundi President Melchior Ndadaye in a military coup was confirmed.
In 1995, the United Nations marked its 50th anniversary with the largest gathering of world leaders in history.
In 2002, police arrested two suspects in a three-week series of sniper attacks in the Washington area that killed 10 people and wounded three others. John Allen Muhammad, 41, and John Lee Malvo, 17, were found sleeping in a car at a rest stop near Frederick, Md.
In 2003, an era in aviation history ended when the supersonic Concorde took off from New York to London on its final flight.
In 2009, U.S. President Barack Obama declared a national emergency related to the outbreak of the H1N1 flu virus, also known as swine flu, to aid local authorities in dealing with the pandemic. Medical officials put the American death toll at 530 with thousands hospitalized.
In 2012, a 41-mile final stretch of Texas Highway 130, a toll road from Mustang Ridge, south of Austin, to Seguin, opened with the highest speed limit in the United States -- 85 mph.
A thought for the day: "Please God, let me hit one. I'll tell everybody you did it." -- baseball slugger Reggie Jackson