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Today in History — September 1

Celebrity birthdays, highlights in history, plus more facts about this day.
/ Source: The Associated Press

Today is Saturday, Sept. 1, the 244th day of 2007. There are 121 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Sept. 1, 1939, World War II began as Nazi Germany invaded Poland.

On this date:

In 1807, 200 years ago, former Vice President Aaron Burr was found not guilty of treason. (Burr was then tried on a misdemeanor charge, but was again acquitted.)

In 1897, the first section of Boston’s new subway system was opened.

In 1905, Alberta and Saskatchewan entered Confederation as the eighth and ninth provinces of Canada.

In 1907, American labor leader Walter P. Reuther was born in Wheeling, W.Va.

In 1923, the Japanese cities of Tokyo and Yokohama were devastated by an earthquake that claimed some 140,000 lives.

In 1932, New York City Mayor James J. “Gentleman Jimmy” Walker resigned following charges of graft and corruption in his administration.

In 1951, the United States, Australia and New Zealand signed a mutual defense pact, the ANZUS treaty.

In 1961, the Soviet Union ended a moratorium on atomic testing with an above-ground nuclear explosion in central Asia.

In 1983, 269 people were killed when a Korean Air Lines Boeing 747 was shot down by a Soviet jet fighter after the airliner entered Soviet airspace.

In 1987, peace demonstrator S. Brian Willson lost his legs when he was hit by a train at the Concord Naval Weapons Station in California while protesting weapons shipments to Central America.

Ten years ago: As Britain continued to mourn the untimely death of Princess Diana, there came word from a source in the Paris prosecutor’s office that Diana’s driver, Henri Paul, was legally intoxicated at the time of the crash. Armed robbers posing as postal workers stole more than $37 million from a Zurich, Switzerland, post office. (A total of 19 people in five countries were arrested in connection with the case.)

Five years ago: The California Legislature approved a $99 billion budget, ending a two-month-old standoff. Typhoon Rusa, the worst typhoon to hit South Korea in 40 years, left at least 119 people dead.

One year ago: Mexico President Vicente Fox was forced to forego his final state-of-the-nation address after leftist lawmakers stormed the stage of Congress to protest disputed July elections; Fox instead gave his speech on television. An Iranian passenger plane caught fire on landing in Mashhad, killing 29 of the 148 people on board. Nellie Connally, the former Texas first lady who was riding in President Kennedy’s limousine when he was assassinated, died in Austin, Texas, at age 87.

Today’s Birthdays: Former Defense Secretary Melvin R. Laird is

85. Conductor Seiji Ozawa is 72. Comedian-actress Lily Tomlin is

68. Actor Don Stroud is 64. Singer Archie Bell is 63. Rock musician Greg Errico is 61. Singer Barry Gibb is 61. Talk show host Dr. Phil McGraw is 57. Singer Gloria Estefan is 50. Former White House Press Secretary Dee Dee Myers is 46. Jazz musician Boney James is 46. Singer-musician Grant Lee Phillips (Grant Lee Buffalo) is 44. Country singer-songwriter Charlie Robison is 43. Rap DJ Spigg Nice (Lost Boyz) is 37. Actor Ricardo Antonio Chavira (“Desperate Housewives”) is 36. Rock singer JD Fortune (INXS) is 34. Actor Scott Speedman is 32. Rock musician Joe Trohman is 23.

Thought for Today: “Labor is the great producer of wealth; it moves all other causes.” — Daniel Webster, American statesman (1782-1852).