Daily Almanac for Friday, April 28, 2023

On this day in 2007, Ashes of actor James Doohan, who portrayed engineer Scotty on Star Trek, and of Apollo 7 astronaut Gordon Cooper soared into space aboard a rocket. Here is James Doohan, publicity photo as Scotty from the television program Star Trek. by NBC Television, public domain, https commons.wikimedia.org


James Montgomery Doohan (/ˈduːən/; March 3, 1920 – July 20, 2005) was a Canadian actor and author, best known for his role as Montgomery “Scotty” Scott in the television and film series Star Trek. Doohan’s characterization of the Scottish Chief Engineer of the Starship Enterprise was one of the most recognizable elements in the Star Trek franchise, and inspired many fans to pursue careers in engineering and other technical fields. He also made contributions behind the scenes, such as the initial development of the Klingon and Vulcan languages.

Prior to his acting career, Doohan served in the 14th Field Artillery Regiment of the 3rd Canadian Infantry Division. He also served as a pilot. He saw combat in Europe during World War II, including the D-Day invasion of Normandy, in which he was wounded, apparently by friendly fire. After the war, he had extensive experience performing in radio and television, which led to his role as Scotty. Following the cancellation of the original Star Trek series, Doohan was typecast and had limited success in finding other roles; he returned to play the character in the animated and film continuations of the series, and made frequent appearances at Star Trek conventions.


National Arbor Day

“Arbor Day is not like other holidays. Each of those reposes on the past, while Arbor Day proposes for the future.” These are the words of J. Sterling Morton, the originator of the Arbor Day idea. He was among the many pioneers moving into the Nebraska Territory in 1854. With the decided lack of trees on the Nebraskan plains, Morton made it his cause to plant trees, not just for beautification but also to preserve the soil. He encouraged civic organizations to join in the effort, proclaiming the first Arbor Day in 1872. By 1885, Arbor Day was officially observed by the entire state and then by other states and schools nationwide. Today the most common date for the state observances is the last Friday in April, although many states celebrate it whenever conditions there are best for planting trees. Several U.S. presidents have proclaimed a national Arbor Day. Read more about Arbor Day.

Question of the Day

I’m interested in finding the North Star on clear nights. I know it has something to do with the Big Dipper. What is the relationship?

The North Star, Polaris, lies directly over the North Pole. You can find it by tracing a line through the two “pointer” stars, Merak and Dubhe, which mark the side of the cup portion (opposite the handle) of the familiar Big Dipper, and continuing it straight across the sky to the next bright star. That’s about the distance from your outstretched thumb to middle finger, held at arm’s length.

Advice of the Day

Broad fingernails indicate a gentle, timid, and bashful nature.

Home Hint of the Day

When you’re planning to build a structure or do some landscaping, two good resources are the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Cooperative Extension Service. In most cases, fees are nominal or nonexistent. Call directory assistance for your county seat and ask for listings under county services.

Word of the Day


An earthen jar charged with powder, grenades, and other materials of an offensive and suffocating smell, — sometimes used in boarding an enemy’s vessel.

Puzzle of the Day

You throw away the outside. You cook the inside. You eat the outside. You throw away the inside. What am I?

Corn on the cob.


  • James Monroe (5th U.S. president) – 1758
  • Oskar Schindler (businessman) – 1908
  • Ethel Catherwood (1928 Olympic gold-medal winner for high jump) – 1909
  • Harper Lee (author) – 1926
  • Eugene Shoemaker (American astrogeologist) – 1928
  • Ann-Margret (actress) – 1941
  • Paul Guilfoyle (actor) – 1949
  • Jay Leno (talk show host) – 1950
  • Penelope Cruz (actress) – 1974
  • Jessica Alba (actress) – 1981


  • Benito Mussolini (Italian dictator) – 1945
  • Penelope Fitzgerald (writer) – 2000
  • Alexander Lebed (general) – 2002
  • Dabbs Greer (actor) – 2007
  • Will Robinson (first African American basketball coach at a Division I school) – 2008
  • Mel Bartholomew (construction engineer and gardener known for his Square Foot Gardening method) – 2016


  • Maryland became the seventh state of the Union – 1788
  • Coal mine explosion occurred in Eccles, West Virginia– 1914
  • Vaccine for yellow fever announced– 1932
  • A six-man expedition, led by Thor Heyerdahl, sailed from Peru aboard a balsa-wood raft named Kon-Tiki on a 101 day journey that would take them across the Pacific Ocean to Polynesia– 1947
  • At age 98, Walter Sitch of Halifax, NS, became a great-great-great-grandfather– 1968
  • Charles de Gaulle, president of France, resigned– 1969
  • A Chorus Line closed after 6,137 performances on Broadway in New York City– 1990
  • The Soyuz-TM 32 launched, carrying the world’s first space tourist, Dennis Tito, to the International Space Station– 2001
  • Ashes of actor James Doohan, who portrayed engineer Scotty on Star Trek, and of Apollo 7 astronaut Gordon Cooper soared into space aboard a rocket– 2007
  • Six endangered red wolf pups were born at the Museum of Life and Science in Durham, North Carolina– 2017


Six feet of snow blocked roads in Buffalo– 1958

Tornadoes swept through central and southeastern Virginia– 2008

A total of 13 inches of snow fell overnight on New York’s Adirondack Mountains and in northern Vermont– 2010

Hailstorms hit parts of Texas and Oklahoma, with a 6.4-inch hailstone falling in Hondo, Texas – 2021

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