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Shortfall for schools now tops $2M
The estimated budget shortfall now tops $2 million as the line-by-line internal review of the Lowell Public Schools budget grinds on. "We understand how urgent this is," said Billie Jo Turner, interim assistant superintendent for finance.

Chelmsford native finds screen time in 'Long Lost Daughter'
Then you may want to tune into the Lifetime Channel tonight at 8 p.m. for the premiere of "Long Lost Daughter." Actress Kati Salowsky, a Chelmsford native, has a supporting role in the new film, which was shot in Devens' New England Studios and Groton.

Chelmsford High threat unfounded
Chelmsford High School Principal Stephen Murray stated in a letter to parents on Tuesday that Chelmsford police were contacted after threats were made. "After conducting the investigation, it has been determined, there is no credible threat or any evidence that lends validity to the threat," Murray stated.

Emotions high over rat infestation in Chelmsford
Residents of 25 Buckman Drive in Chelmsford, from left, Mona Zafar and her sister Bina Zafar, who owns the property, speak at a Board of Health meeting in response to allegations their backyard chickens have caused a rat infestation in the neighborhood. At right are the Zafars' neighbors Kati Moran and Jeff Jones.

Paquette receives 'Service Above Self' award
Steven Sager, governor of Rotary District 7910, recently visited the Chelmsford Rotary Club to share district plans for the 2018-2019 year. While there, he also presented a "Service Above Self" award to Chelmsford Rotarian Gwen Paquette, who secured backpacks and school supplies for 100 Chelmsford students who needed them for the start of school.

Today

Suzanne Valadon (1865)
After a fall from the trapeze ended her career as a circus acrobat, Valadon modeled for many of the major impressionists. Encouraged by Henri Toulouse-Lautrec and Edgar Degas, she began painting and became known for her intensely personal works, including landscapes, nudes, and portraits featuring vibrant colors with heavy black outlines. Valadon was the mother of painter Maurice Utrillo. Somewhat eccentric, she kept a goat at her studio, claiming that it served what practical purpose? Discuss

Anne of Austria, Queen of France (1601)
Neglected by her husband, French King Louis XIII, Anne of Austria stirred up controversy with flirtatious indiscretions. After her seemingly treasonous correspondence with Spain, her husband's principal minister, Cardinal Richelieu, attempted to limit her influence. When Louis died, Anne was declared sole regent of their son, Louis XIV—contrary to her husband's wishes—and strove to ensure his absolute power. What did she do that was hailed at the time as "a marvel when it was least expected"?

John Loudon McAdam (1756)
McAdam was a Scottish engineer who invented a process called "macadamization." After noting the poor condition of the highways near his estate, he recommended that roads be raised above the adjacent ground for good drainage and then covered, first with large stones then with small stones, and bound with fine gravel. It was perhaps the greatest advance in road construction since Roman times and became known as "tarmac," short for "tarmacadam." What was the first macadam road in North America?

Quote of the Day

Charles Dickens
Pride is one of the seven deadly sins; but it cannot be the pride of a mother in her children, for that is a compound of two cardinal virtues—faith and hope. Discuss

Jerome K. Jerome
An aching head soon makes one forget an aching heart.

William Makepeace Thackeray
Oh, be humble, my brother, in your prosperity! Be gentle with those who are less lucky, if not more deserving.

This Day in History

Merchant Royal Sinks, Taking Cargo of Gold and Silver with Her (1641)
A holy grail of marine salvage, the wreck of the Merchant Royal, one of the most valuable of all time, has eluded treasure hunters for centuries. When the leaky, 17th-century English merchant ship sank in rough weather in the vicinity of the Isles of Scilly and southwestern England, she took with her a fabled cargo of gold, silver, and precious gems worth over a billion dollars today. Among the riches lost in the wreck was the money to pay whom? Discuss