Today is Thursday, Oct. 16, the 290th day of 2008.
There are 76 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
- On Oct. 16, 1978, the College of Cardinals of the Roman Catholic Church chose Cardinal Karol Wojtyla to be the new pope; he took the name John Paul II.
On this date:
- In 1758, American lexicographer Noah Webster was born in Hartford, Conn.
- In 1793, during the French Revolution, Marie Antoinette, the queen of France, was beheaded.
- In 1859, abolitionist John Brown led a group of about 20 men in a failed raid on Harper's Ferry, Va.
- In 1916, Margaret Sanger opened the first birth control clinic, in Brooklyn, N.Y. (The clinic ended up being raided by police and Sanger was arrested.)
- In 1946, 10 Nazi war criminals condemned during the Nuremberg trials were hanged.
- In 1962, the Cuban missile crisis began as President Kennedy was informed that reconnaissance photographs had revealed the presence of missile bases in Cuba.
- In 1964, China set off its first atomic bomb, codenamed "596," on the Lop Nur Test Ground.
- In 1968, American athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos sparked controversy at the Mexico City Olympics by giving "black power" salutes during a victory ceremony after they'd won gold and bronze medals in the 200-meter race.
- In 1987, a 58 1/2-hour drama in Midland, Texas, ended happily as rescuers freed Jessica McClure, an 18-month-old girl trapped in an abandoned well.
- In 1991, a deadly shooting rampage took place in Killeen, Texas, as George Hennard opened fire at a Luby's Cafeteria, killing 23 people before taking his own life.
Ten years ago:
- Negotiators David Trimble and John Hume were named recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize for brokering the Northern Ireland peace accord.
Five years ago:
- The U.N. Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution aimed at attracting more troops and money to help stabilize Iraq and speed its independence.
- Three American soldiers were killed during a clash at a Shiite Muslim cleric's headquarters in Karbala.
- Pope John Paul II celebrated his 25 years as pontiff before a huge crowd in Rome's St. Peter's Square.
- The New York Yankees won the American League Championship Series, defeating the Boston Red Sox 6-5 in Game 7.
One year ago:
- President Bush welcomed the Dalai Lama to the White House for a half-hour meeting.
- Libya won a seat on the U.N. Security Council.
- Actress Deborah Kerr died in Suffolk, England, at age 86.
- Barbara West Dainton, believed to be one of the last two survivors from the sinking of the Titanic in 1912, died in Camborne, England, at age 96.
- Actress Angela Lansbury is 83.
- Author Gunter Grass is 81.
- Former presidential adviser Charles W. Colson is 77.
- Actor-producer Tony Anthony is 71.
- Actor Barry Corbin is 68.
- Rock musician C.F. Turner (Bachman-Turner Overdrive) is 65.
- Actress Suzanne Somers is 62.
- Rock singer-musician Bob Weir is 61.
- Producer-director David Zucker is 61.
- Record company executive Jim Ed Norman is 60.
- Actor Daniel Gerroll is 57.
- Actor-director Tim Robbins is 50.
- Actor-musician Gary Kemp is 49.
- Singer-musician Bob Mould is 48.
- Actor Randy Vasquez is 47.
- Rock musician Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers) is 46.
- Actor Todd Stashwick is 40.
- Jazz musician Roy Hargrove is 39.
- Actress Terri J. Vaughn is 39.
- Singer Wendy Wilson (Wilson Phillips) is 39.
- Rapper B-Rock (B-Rock and the Bizz) is 37.
- Rock singer Chad Gray (Mudvayne) is 37.
- Actress Kellie Martin is 33.
- Singer John Mayer is 31.
- Actor Jeremy Jackson is 28.
- Actress Brea Grant (TV: "Heroes") is 27.
Thought for Today:
"To walk into history is to be free at once, to be at large among people."
Elizabeth Bowen, Irish-born author (1899-1973).
"Let's all be careful out there!"