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Thursday, March 5, 1998

  • Today's Events
  • On Horizon
  • On This Day
  • Newslink
  • Holidays & more
  • Almanac archive
  • "We've also opened a lot of kings' pyramids, but today we are opening those of queens. Queens have mystery."

    -- Zahi Hawas, director of the Giza plateau in Egypt

    Today's events

  • The VII Paralympic Winter Games open in Nagano, Japan.

  • NASA releases initial findings of the Lunar Prospector.

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    On the horizon

  • On Friday, March 6, the Massachusetts State Supreme Judicial Court hears appeal in case of Louise Woodward, the 19-year-old au pair accused of killing a baby in her care.

  • On Saturday, March 7, the start of the annual sled dog race begins in Anchorage, Alaska.

  • On Sunday, March 8, the annual Screen Actors Guild awards will be presented in Los Angeles.

  • Monday, March 9, is the deadline for motions in Microsoft's appeal of an injunction restricting distribution of its browser program.

  • On Tuesday, March 10, the manslaughter trial of FBI sharpshooter Lon Horiuchi, charged in the death of white separatist Randy Weaver's wife during the 1992 siege at Ruby Ridge, begins in Idaho.

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    On this day

  • In 1133, Henry II, the first Plantagenet king of England, was born in France.

  • In 1534, Antonio Allegri da Correggio, Italian Renaissance painter, died.

  • In 1751, James Madison, fourth president of the United States, was born. He sponsored the first 10 amendments to the U.S. Constitution.

  • In 1770, the "Boston massacre" occurred when five people were killed after British troops opened fire on a crowd.

  • In 1778, Thomas Arne, English composer of "Rule, Britannia," died.

  • In 1790, Flora Macdonald, Scottish Jacobite heroine, died. In 1746 she helped Bonnie Prince Charlie, the Stuart claimant to the British throne, escape from the Hebridean island of Benbecula.

  • In 1815, Franz Anton Mesmer, German physician, died; mesmerism, a method of producing a trance or sleep, was named after him.

  • In 1827, Count Alessandro Giuseppe Volta, Italian inventor of the first electric battery, died.

  • In 1856, In London, the Covent Garden theater was destroyed by fire.

  • In 1867, in Ireland, a Fenian rising took place at Kilmallock when 14 police fought off over 200 armed Fenians.

  • In 1916, the Spanish liner Principe de Asturias struck a rock off the coast of Brazil and sank in minutes, killing 445 people out of the 588 aboard.

  • In 1920, Norway was admitted to the League of Nations.

  • In 1933, election returns in Germany gave the Nazis and their allies 52 percent of seats in the Reichstag.

  • In 1936, the new Spitfire fighter plane went on show for the first time in Southampton, England.

  • In 1945, in World War II an advance force of the U.S. 1st Army entered Cologne. On the same day, German boys born in 1929 were required to enroll in the regular armed forces.

  • In 1946, in a speech at Fulton, Missouri, Winston Churchill said: "From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic an Iron Curtain has descended across the continent."

  • In 1953, Soviet leader Joseph Stalin (Iosif Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili) died after three decades in power.

  • In 1953, Sergei Prokofiev, Russian composer, died. Best known for his orchestral fairy tale "Peter and the Wolf" and for his filmscores "Alexander Nevsky" and "Ivan the Terrible."

  • In 1969, Gustav Heinemann became West German president in succession to Heinrich Lubke.

  • In 1970, the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty came into force with 45 countries, including the three main nuclear powers, having signed the agreement.

  • In 1977, in the United States, President Carter answered questions from listeners over 26 states in the first presidential phone-in to be broadcast.

  • In 1980, in Rhodesia, Robert Mugabe and Joshua Nkomo agreed to form a coalition government.

  • In 1983, the Australian Labor Party, headed by Robert Hawke, was swept into power, beating the Liberals of Malcolm Fraser.

  • In 1984, William Powell, American film actor, died; he was best known for his roles in "The Thin Man," "My Man Godfrey" and "Life With Father."

  • In 1984, Tito Gobbi, Italian operatic baritone, died; he was famed for his role as "Scarpia" in Puccini's "Tosca."

  • In 1989, Time Inc. and Warner Communications Inc. decided to merge into a world-leading media and entertainment giant.

  • In 1990, Hortensia Bussi, widow of Marxist former President Salvador Allende, returned to Chile from exile 16 years after her husband was overthrown and died in a bloody coup.

  • In 1992, Mexico's ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party celebrated 63 years in power.

  • In 1993, five years after his exit in disgrace from the 1988 Seoul Olympics, Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson was banned for life after he was ruled to have failed a second dope test.

  • In 1994, South Africa's white right-wing Afrikaner People's Front (AVF) umbrella group decided to boycott the country's first all-race elections in April.

  • In 1994, White House lawyer Bernard Nussbaum resigned, becoming the first casualty of the Whitewater affair that had plagued the Clinton administration.

  • In 1994, in Pensacola, Florida, Michael Griffin, a Christian fundamentalist, was sentenced to life imprisonment for first-degree murder in the fatal shooting of a women's clinic doctor in March 1993.

  • In 1995, British merchant bank Barings confirmed that a rescue package had been agreed upon with the Dutch ING group to buy the bank after the massive stock market gambling that triggered its downfall.

  • In 1996, former Bangladesh President Khandkar Mushtaque Ahmed died at age 77. He was Bangladesh's first foreign minister, and took over as president after a military coup in August 1975.

  • In 1997, Turkey's National Security Council said that Islamist Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan had signed a council statement demanding a crackdown on religious activism.

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    The 1998 Paralympic Winter Games open today in Nagano, Japan. Check out the official site for all the events, athletes and news.


    Holidays and more

  • It is Customs Chiefs Day in Vanatu.

  • It is Commemoration of the Arrival of the Gospel in Tahiti.

  • Actress Samantha Eggar ("Samantha and the King") is 59.

  • Magician Penn Jillette is 43.

  • Actor Paul Sand ("St. Elsewhere") is 54.

  • Actor Dean Stockwell ("Quantum Leap") is 62.

  • Actor Michael Warren ("Hill Street Blues") is 52.

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    Sources: Associated Press,
    Chase's Calendar of Events 1997, J.P. Morgan

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