updated 10/11/2006 12:24:24 AM ET 2006-10-11T04:24:24

Today is Wednesday, Oct. 11, the 284th day of 2006. There are 81 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:
Oct. 11, 1779, Polish nobleman Casimir Pulaski, fighting for American independence, died two days after being mortally wounded during the Revolutionary War Battle of Savannah, Ga.

On this date:
In 1890, the Daughters of the American Revolution was founded in Washington.

In 1906, the San Francisco Board of Education ordered the city’s Asian students segregated in a purely “Oriental” school. (The order was later rescinded at the behest of President Theodore Roosevelt, who promised to curb future Japanese immigration to the United States.)

In 1942, the World War II Battle of Cape Esperance began in the Solomons, resulting in an American victory over the Japanese.

In 1962, Pope John XXIII convened the first session of the Roman Catholic Church’s Second Ecumenical Council, also known as Vatican II.

In 1968, Apollo 7, the first manned Apollo mission, was launched with astronauts Wally Schirra, Donn Fulton Eisele and R. Walter Cunningham aboard.

In 1975, “NBC Saturday Night” (later “Saturday Night Live”) made its debut with guest host George Carlin.

In 1984, space shuttle Challenger astronaut Kathy Sullivan became the first American woman to walk in space.

In 1986, President Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev opened two days of talks concerning arms control and human rights in Reykjavik, Iceland.

In 1991, testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee, law professor Anita Hill accused Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas of sexually harassing her; Thomas re-appeared before the panel to denounce the proceedings as a “high-tech lynching.”

In 1991, comedian Redd Foxx died in Los Angeles at age 68.

Ten years ago: Roman Catholic Bishop Carlos Filipe Ximenes Belo and Jose Ramos-Horta of East Timor won the Nobel Peace Prize for their pro-democracy efforts in troubled East Timor.

Five years ago: In his first prime-time news conference since taking office, President Bush offered the Taliban a chance to stop America’s punishing assaults on Afghanistan by turning over suspected terror mastermind Osama bin Laden. The FBI warned of possible terrorist attacks in the days to come. Trinidad-born writer V.S. Naipaul won the Nobel Prize in literature.

One year ago: The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said it had finished pumping out the New Orleans metropolitan area, which was flooded by Hurricane Katrina six weeks earlier and then was swamped again by Hurricane Rita. A Russian spacecraft carrying U.S. millionaire Gregory Olsen and a two-man crew landed in Kazakhstan after a seven-day space sojourn.

Today’s Birthdays: Author Elmore Leonard is 81. Actor Ron Leibman is 69. Country singer Gene Watson is 63. Singer-musician Daryl Hall is 57. Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., is 56. Rhythm-and-blues musician Andrew Woolfolk is 56. Actress-director Catlin Adams is 56. Actor David Morse is 53. Country singer Paulette Carlson is 53. Actor Stephen Spinella is 50. Football Hall of Fame player Steve Young is 45. Actress Joan Cusack is 44. Comedy writer and TV host Michael J. Nelson is 42. Actor Sean Patrick Flanery is 41. Actor Luke Perry is 40. Country singer-songwriter Todd Snider is 40. Actress Jane Krakowski is 38. Rapper U-God (Wu-Tang Clan) is 36. Rapper MC Lyte is 35. Singer NeeNa Lee is 31. Actress Michelle Trachtenberg is 21. Golfer Michelle Wie is 17.

Thought for Today: “Compassion is the basis of all morality.” — Arthur Schopenhauer, German philosopher (1788-1860).

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