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Billy Graham in 1966
Billy Graham

On this day

February 24: Independence Day in Estonia (1918)

The Burning of Drury Lane Theatre from Westminster Bridge by Thomas Luny
The Burning of Drury Lane Theatre from Westminster Bridge by Thomas Luny

Arcangela Tarabotti (b. 1604) · Thomas Bowdler (d. 1825) · Alain Prost (b. 1955)

More anniversaries:

Did you know?

John W. Overton
John W. Overton
  • ... that John W. Overton (pictured) was killed in World War I, a year after setting the world track and field records in the indoor mile and indoor 1000 yard (910 m) races in 1917?
  • ... that the organizers of FESTIMA, a festival in Burkina Faso celebrating traditional African masks, estimate that 100,000 people attended in 2016?
  • ... that after the shooting of Trayvon Martin, Seattle author Ijeoma Oluo started writing about her social concerns on a blog that she had previously devoted to food?
  • ... that what at first sight appears to be a single Oedera capensis flowerhead, is in fact typically a group of nine densely cropped heads?
  • ... that because she felt she lacked acting experience, Japanese voice actress Tomori Kusunoki initially auditioned as a singer?
  • ... that the killings at the Alem Bekagn prison were visible from the windows of the Organisation of African Unity headquarters, but were never mentioned by the OAU?
  • ... that the Yellow River put an end to Wanting in 1168?

Today's Featured Article

IAU chart of the constellation

Pyxis is a small and faint constellation in the southern sky. The name comes from Pyxis Nautica, Latin for a mariner's compass (as opposed to a draftsman's compass, represented by the constellation Circinus). Introduced by Nicolas Louis de Lacaille in the 18th century, Pyxis is counted among the 88 modern constellations. In the 19th century, astronomer John Herschel suggested renaming Pyxis to Malus, the mast, since it appears near the old constellation of the ship Argo Navis, but the suggestion was not followed. Pyxis is completely visible from latitudes south of 53 degrees north, with its best evening-sky visibility in February and March. The plane of the Milky Way passes through it. Its three brightest stars—Alpha, Beta and Gamma Pyxidis—are in a rough line; the brightest of these is Alpha (magnitude 3.68), a blue-white star around 22,000 times as luminous as the Sun. Near Alpha is T Pyxidis, a recurrent nova that has flared up to magnitude 7 every few decades. Three star systems have planets, all discovered by Doppler spectroscopy. (Full article...)


Photo of the Day

William H. Crawford

William H. Crawford (1772–1834) was an American politician and judge during the early 19th century. He served as United States Secretary of War and United States Secretary of the Treasury before running for president in the 1824 election. Born in Virginia, Crawford moved to Georgia at a young age and studied law. In 1803 he was elected to the Georgia House of Representatives, and in 1807 the Georgia legislature elected him to the United States Senate. Under President James Madison, he was made U.S. minister to France before taking several cabinet posts. Despite suffering a severe stroke in 1823, Crawford sought the presidency with the Democratic-Republican Party. As no candidate won a majority of the electoral vote, the United States House of Representatives selected John Quincy Adams as president from the three candidates who had received the most electoral votes. Crawford was then asked to remain at Treasury, but refused.

Engraving: Bureau of Engraving and Printing; restoration: Andrew Shiva