Today is Friday, May 13, the 133rd day of 2005. There are 232 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
In May 13, 1981, Pope John Paul II was shot and seriously wounded in St. Peter’s Square by Turkish assailant Mehmet Ali Agca.
On this date:
In 1607, the English colony at Jamestown, Va., was settled.
In 1842, composer Sir Arthur Sullivan, who collaborated with Sir William Gilbert in writing 14 comic operas, was born in London.
In 1846, the United States declared that a state of war already existed against Mexico.
In 1917, three peasant children near Fatima, Portugal, reported seeing a vision of the Virgin Mary.
In 1918, the first U.S. airmail stamps, featuring a picture of an airplane, were introduced. On some of the stamps, the airplane was printed upside-down, making them collector’s items.
In 1940, in his first speech as prime minister of Britain, Winston Churchill told the House of Commons, “I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat.”
In 1954, President Eisenhower signed into law the St. Lawrence Seaway Development Act.
In 1954, the musical play “The Pajama Game” opened on Broadway.
In 1958, Vice President Nixon’s limousine was battered by rocks thrown by anti-U.S. demonstrators in Caracas, Venezuela.
In 1985, a confrontation between Philadelphia authorities and the radical group MOVE ended as police dropped an explosive onto the group’s headquarters; 11 people died in the resulting fire.
Ten years ago: Army Capt. Lawrence Rockwood was convicted at his court-martial in Fort Drum, N.Y., of conducting an unauthorized investigation of reported human rights abuses at a Haitian prison (the next day, Rockwood was dismissed from the military, but received no prison time).
Five years ago: Explosions at a fireworks warehouse in the Netherlands killed 22 people and injured nearly 1,000 others.
One year ago: Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld visited the Abu Ghraib prison camp in Iraq, where he insisted the Pentagon did not try to cover up abuses there. During a campaign swing in West Virginia, President Bush said he felt “disgraced” by the images of U.S. soldiers abusing Iraqi prisoners but reminded his listeners that actions of a handful of Americans should not sully the nation’s military. TV anchorman Floyd Kalber died in Burr Ridge, Ill., at age 79.
Today’s Birthdays: Actress Beatrice Arthur is 83. Critic Clive Barnes is 78. Actor Buck Taylor is 67. Actor Harvey Keitel is 66. Author Charles Baxter is 58. Actor Franklin Ajaye is 56. Singer Stevie Wonder is 55. Actress Julianne Phillips is 45. Basketball player Dennis Rodman is 44. Actor Tom Verica is 41. Country singer Lari White is 40. Singer Darius Rucker (Hootie and the Blowfish) is 39. Actress Susan Floyd is 37. Actress Samantha Morton is 28. Rock musician Mickey Madden (Maroon 5) is 26.
Thought for Today: “The worst-tempered people I’ve ever met were people who knew they were wrong.” — Wilson Mizner, American playwright (1876-1933).