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Online Document: Today in history

Today is Friday, Oct. 10, the 283rd day of 1997. There are 82 days left in the year. The Jewish day of atonement, Yom Kippur, begins at sunset.

Today's Highlight in History:On Oct. 10, 1973, Vice President Spiro T. Agnew, accused of accepting bribes, pleaded no contest to one count of federal income tax evasion, and resigned his office.

On this date:

In 1813, composer Giuseppe Verdi was born in Le Roncole, Italy.

In 1845, the U.S. Naval Academy opened in Annapolis, Md.

In 1886, the tuxedo dinner jacket made its American debut at the autumn ball in Tuxedo Park, N.Y.

In 1911, revolutionaries under Sun Yat-sen overthrew China's Manchu dynasty.

In 1935, George Gershwin's opera "Porgy and Bess" opened on Broadway.

In 1938, Germany completed its annexation of Czechoslovakia's Sudetenland.

In 1943, Chiang Kai-shek took the oath of office as president of China.

In 1957, President Dwight D. Eisenhower apologized to Komla Agbeli Gbdemah, the finance minister of Ghana, after the official had been refused service in a Dover, Del., restaurant.

In 1970, Quebec Labor Minister Pierre Laporte was kidnapped by the Quebec Liberation Front, a militant separatist group. (Laporte's body was found about a week later.)

In 1970, Fiji became independent after nearly a century of British rule.

In 1985, actor Yul Brynner died in New York at age 65; actor-director Orson Welles died in Los Angeles at age 70.

Ten years ago: The Rev. Jesse Jackson formally launched his bid for the Democratic presidential nomination in Raleigh, N.C.

Five years ago: Iraq released U.S. munitions expert Clinton Hall, two days after he'd been taken prisoner in the demilitarized zone separating Iraq and Kuwait.

One year ago: President Clinton joined Vice President Gore in Knoxville, Tenn., where the president moved to broaden the sweep of the Internet at 100 universities, national labs and other federal institutions. Republican presidential nominee Bob Dole hosted a rally in Cincinnati that featured his running mate, Jack Kemp, and retired General Colin Powell.

Today's Birthdays: Jazz musician Harry "Sweets" Edison is 82. Producer Owen Bradley is 82. Playwright Harold Pinter is 67. Former Illinois Sen. Adlai Stevenson III is 67. Actor Peter Coyote is 55. Entertainer Ben Vereen is 51. Singer John Prine is 51. Rock singer-musician Cyril Neville (The Neville Brothers) is 49. Actress Jessica Harper is 48. Singer-musician Midge Ure is 44. Singer David Lee Roth is 42. Country singer Tanya Tucker is 39. Musician Martin Kemp (Spandau Ballet) is 36. Rock musician Mike Malinin (Goo Goo Dolls) is 30.

Thought for Today: "The imperceptible process of age has a point which, once passed, cannot be retraced. I knew I had passed that point and was getting old the day I noticed that all the cops looked so young." - Harry Lewis Golden, American author, editor and publisher (1903-1981).