The almanac

United Press International

Today is Wednesday, Nov. 27, the 331st day of 2013 with 34 to follow.

This is the first night of Hanukkah.


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

Those born on this date are under the sign of Sagittarius. They include Anders Celsius, Swedish astronomer and inventor of the centigrade thermometer, in 1701; American historian Charles Beard and Israeli statesman Chaim Weizmann, both in 1874; theatrical producer David Merrick in 1911; entertainer "Buffalo Bob" Smith ("The Howdy Dowdy Show") in 1917; writer Gail Sheehy in 1937 (age 76); actor and martial arts star Bruce Lee in 1940; singer Eddie Rabbitt in 1941; Rock and Roll Hall of fame member Jimi Hendrix in 1942 and Olympic gold medal winning sprinter Henry Carr, also in 1942 (age 71); Caroline Kennedy, daughter of President John F. Kennedy, in 1957 (age 56); actors James Avery in 1948 (age 65), Curtis Armstrong in 1953 (age 60), Fisher Stevens in 1963 (age 50), Robin Givens in 1964 (age 49) and Jaleel White in 1976 (age 37); film director Kathryn Bigelow in 1951 (age 62); and Bill Nye "The Science Guy," in 1955 (age 58).

On this date in history:

In 1759, town officials in Stratford-upon-Avon, England, evicted the Rev. Francis Gastrell from William Shakespeare's home after he cut down a 150-year-old tree that had been planted by the writer.

In 1901, the U.S. War Department authorized creation of the Army War College to instruct commissioned officers. It was built in Leavenworth, Kan.

In 1924, the first Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade took place in New York.

In 1940, two months after Gen. Ion Antonescu seized power in Romania and forced King Carol II to abdicate, more than 60 aides of the exiled king, including Nicolae Iorga, a former minister and acclaimed historian, were executed.

In 1970, a man with a knife attempted to injure Pope Paul VI at Manila Airport in the Philippines.

In 1989, Virginia certified Douglas Wilder as the first elected U.S. African-American governor by a margin of 0.38 percent of the vote.

In 1990, British treasury chief John Major was elected Conservative Party leader, succeeding Margaret Thatcher as prime minister.

In 1994, Bosnian Serbs took 150 U.N. peacekeepers hostage to prevent NATO airstrikes.

In 2003, U.S. President George W. Bush arrived in Iraq under the cover of darkness in a surprise visit to American forces in Baghdad -- to help serve Thanksgiving dinner.

In 2006, while deposed Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein awaited court-ordered execution on his earlier mass murder conviction, Baghdad prosecutors resumed his second trial in which he and six others were charged with crimes against humanity in the deaths of as many as 180,000 Kurds in 1987-88.

In 2008, Edna Scott Parker, said to be the oldest person in the world, died at age 115 in Indiana.

In 2010, South Korea and the United States shrugged off North Korean warnings and started four days of naval exercises in the Yellow Sea. North Korea, which shelled a South Korean island a few days earlier in an effort to head off the exercises, warned the drills would move the region closer to "the brink of war."

In 2012, seven people stripped naked in U.S. House Speaker John Boehner's office to protest potential funding cuts for AIDS research. Three of the protesters, all women, were charged with lewd and indecent acts.

A thought for the day: "Film is one if three universal languages, the other two: mathematics and music." -- Frank Capra

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