Today is Tuesday, Oct. 7, the 280th day of 1997. There are 85 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:On Oct. 7, 1777, the second Battle of Saratoga began during the American Revolution. (The British forces, under Gen. John Burgoyne, surrendered 10 days later.)
On this date:
In 1765, the Stamp Act Congress convened in New York to draw up colonial grievances against England.
In 1849, author Edgar Allan Poe died in Baltimore, Md., at age 40.
In 1868, Cornell University was inaugurated in Ithaca, N.Y.
In 1940, Artie Shaw and his Orchestra recorded Hoagy Carmichael's "Stardust" for RCA Victor.
In 1949, the Republic of East Germany was formed.
In 1954, Marian Anderson became the first black singer hired by the Metropolitan Opera in New York.
In 1960, Democratic presidential candidate John F. Kennedy and Republican opponent Richard M. Nixon held the second of their broadcast debates.
In 1963, President Kennedy signed the documents of ratification for a nuclear test ban treaty with Britain and the Soviet Union.
In 1968, the Motion Picture Association of America adopted its film-rating system, ranging from "G" for "general" audiences to "X" for adult patrons only.
In 1981, Egypt's parliament named Vice President Hosni Mubarak to succeed the assassinated Anwar Sadat.
In 1982, the Andrew Lloyd Webber-Tim Rice musical "Cats," featuring the popular song "Memory," opened on Broadway.
In 1985, Palestinian gunmen hijacked the Italian cruise ship Achille Lauro in the Mediterranean with more than 400 people aboard.
Ten years ago: President Reagan's advisory commission on AIDS was left seemingly in disarray as its chairman, Dr. W. Eugene Mayberry, and its vice chairman, Dr. Woodrow A. Myers Jr., resigned.
Five years ago: Trade representatives of the United States, Canada and Mexico initialed the North American Free Trade Agreement during a ceremony in San Antonio, Texas.
One year ago: The effects of a Canadian Auto Workers strike against General Motors spread across the border as 1,850 workers were laid off at two U.S. parts plants. The Irish Republican Army detonated two car bombs inside the British army's headquarters in Northern Ireland, wounding 31 people.
Today's Birthdays: Actress June Allyson is 80. Singer Al Martino is 70. Retired South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu is 66. Former National Security Council aide Oliver North is 54. Country singer Kiernan Kane (The O'Kanes) is 48. Singer John Mellencamp is 46. Actress Christopher Norris is 44. Rock musician Tico Torres (Bon Jovi) is 44. Cellist Yo-Yo Ma is 42. Actress Judy Landers is 36. Singer Toni Braxton is 29. Rock singer-musician Thom York (Radiohead) is 29. Rock musician Leeroy Thornhill (Prodigy) is 28.
Thought for Today: "History is the propaganda of the victors." - Ernst Toller, German poet and dramatist (1893-1939).