The almanac

By United Press International

Today is Tuesday, Feb. 18, the 49th day of 2014 with 316 to follow.

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


Those born on this date are under the sign of Aquarius. They include Austrian physicist Ernst Mach in 1838; stained glass artist Louis Comfort Tiffany in 1848; Italian automaker Enzo Ferrari in 1898; actors Jack Palance in 1919 and George Kennedy in 1925 (age 89); game show host Bill Cullen in 1920; author and magazine editor Helen Gurley Brown in 1922; novelists Len Deighton in 1929 (age 85), Toni Morrison in 1931 (age 83) and Jean M. Auel in 1936 (age 78); cartoonists Gahan Wilson in 1930 (age 84) and Johnny Hart in 1931; filmmaker Milos Forman in 1932 (age 82); Yoko Ono, wife of John Lennon, in 1933 (age 81); actors Cybill Shepherd in 1950 (age 64) and John Travolta in 1954 (age 60); film director John Hughes in 1950; game show icon Vanna White in 1957 (age 57); actors Greta Scacchi in 1960 (age 54), Matt Dillon in 1964 (age 50) and Molly Ringwald in 1968 (age 46); and rapper and record producer Dr. Dre, born Andre Romelle Young, in 1965 (age 49).


On this date in history:

In 1841, the first filibuster in the U.S. Senate began. (It ended March 11.)

In 1856, The American Party, also known as the "Know-Nothing Party," nominated its first presidential candidate, former U.S. President Millard Fillmore, but, he carried only Maryland and the party soon vanished.

In 1865, after a long Civil War siege, Union naval forces captured Charleston, S.C.

In 1884, "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" by Mark Twain was published.

In 1930, the planet Pluto was discovered by astronomer Clyde Tombaugh.

In 1954, the Church of Scientology was established in Los Angeles.

In 1967, J. Robert Oppenheimer, the "father of the atomic bomb," died in Princeton, N.J., at the age of 62.

In 1979, Snow fell in the Sahara Desert in southern Algeria for the first known time.

In 2001, Dale Earnhardt Sr., stock-car racing's top driver, was killed in a crash in the final turn of the final lap of the Daytona 500. He was 49.

In 2003, about 200 people died in a South Korea subway fire set by a man authorities said apparently was upset at his doctors.

In 2004, 40 chemical and fuel-laden runaway rail cars derailed in northeastern Iran, producing an explosion that killed at least 265 people.


In 2006, 16 people died in rioting in Nigeria over published cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad that enraged Muslims around the world.

In 2008, two of four masterpieces stolen from the Zurich museum a week earlier, a Monet and a van Gogh, were found in perfect condition in the back seat of an unlocked car in Zurich.

In 2010, a man crashed his light plane into an office of the Internal Revenue Service in Austin, Texas, killing himself and two others. Authorities said he apparently held a grudge against the U.S. government and its tax system.

In 2013, Jerry Buss, who owned the Los Angeles Lakers for more than 30 years, during which they won 10 NBA championships, died after a long fight against cancer. He was 80.

A thought for the day: "A right is not what someone gives you; it's what no one can take from you." -- Ramsey Clark

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