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Today in history: October 19

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

Today is Wednesday, Oct. 19, the 292nd day of 2005. There are 73 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:
On Oct. 19, 1781, British troops under Lord Cornwallis surrendered at Yorktown, Va., as the American Revolution neared its end.

On this date:
In 1765, the Stamp Act Congress, meeting in New York, drew up a declaration of rights and liberties.

In 1812, French forces under Napoleon Bonaparte began their retreat from Moscow.

In 1864, Confederate Gen. Jubal A. Early attacked Union forces at Cedar Creek, Va.; the Union troops were able to rally and defeat the Confederates.

In 1944, the Navy announced that black women would be allowed into Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service (the WAVES).

In 1950, United Nations forces entered the North Korean capital of Pyongyang.

In 1951, President Truman signed an act formally ending the state of war with Germany.

In 1960, the United States imposed an embargo on exports to Cuba covering all commodities except medical supplies and certain food products.

In 1977, the supersonic Concorde made its first landing in New York City.

In 1977, the body of West German industrialist Hanns Martin Schleyer, who had been kidnapped by left-wing extremists, was found in Mulhouse, France.

In 1987, the stock market crashed as the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 508 points, or 22.6 percent in value.

Ten years ago: Ignoring a veto threat, the House passed a Republican plan for overhauling Medicare by raising premiums for the elderly and disabled and saving billions of dollars from hospital and doctor fees.

Five years ago: A government advisory panel of scientists declared that phenylpropanolamine, an ingredient used in dozens of popular over-the-counter medicines, could not be classified as safe, saying it could be the cause of several hundred hemorrhagic strokes suffered annually by people under 50.

One year ago: Insurgents in Iraq abducted Margaret Hassan, the local director of CARE International, from her car in Baghdad. (Hassan is believed to have been slain by her captors.) Thirteen people were killed when a Corporate Airlines commuter turboprop crashed in northeast Missouri. Former arms control adviser Paul H. Nitze died in Washington, D.C., at age 97.

Today’s Birthdays: Former ambassador to Russia Robert S. Strauss is 87. Columnist Jack Anderson is 83. Author John le Carre is 74. Artist Peter Max is 68. Actor Michael Gambon is 65. Actor John Lithgow is 60. Former National Organization for Women President Patricia Ireland is 60. Singer Jeannie C. Riley is 60. Talk show host Charlie Chase is 53. Rock singer-musician Karl Wallinger (World Party) is 48. Singer Jennifer Holliday is 45. TV host Ty Pennington (“Extreme Makeover: Home Edition”) is 41. Rock singer-musician Todd Park Mohr (Big Head Todd and the Monsters) is 40. Actor Jon Favreau is 39. Amy Carter is 38. “South Park” co-creator Trey Parker is 36. Comedian Chris Kattan is 35. Rock singer Pras Michel (The Fugees) is 33. Actor Omar Gooding is 29. Country singer Cyndi Thomson is 29. Actor Benjamin Salisbury is 25.

Thought for Today: “Courage is the price that life exacts for granting peace.” — Amelia Earhart, American aviator (1898-1937?)