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On February 17th...
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1461 A Lancastrian army defeated a Yorkist army and recaptured King Henry VI at the Second Battle of St. Albans.
1500 A peasant army repeled the ducal army of Schleswig and Holstein in the Battle of Hemmingstedt.
1510 Portuguese Admiral Afonso de Albuquerque conquered the city of Goa (in present-day India).
1568 Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian II agreed to pay tribute to the Ottoman Enpire.
1598 Boris Godunov was chosen Tsar of Russia.
1621 Myles Standish was elected as the first commander of the Plymouth Colony.
1673 Playwright Moličre died.
1740 Revolutionary War General John Sullivan was born.
1765 The Stamp Act was approved by the British Parliament.
1766 Economist Thomas Malthus was born.
1776 The first volume of Edward Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire was published.
1801 The U. S. House of Representatives broke an Electoral College tie by choosing Thomas Jefferson over Aaron Burr for President.
1814 The French Imperial Army defeated Russian and Austrian forces at the Battle of Mormant.
1815 The U. S. Senate ratified the Treaty of Ghent, formally ending the War of 1812.
1817 Baltimore, Maryland, became the first U. S. city to be lit by gas.
1818 Baron Karl von Drais de Sauerbrun patented the "draisine" (an early bicycle).
1827 Educator Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi died.
1844 Montgomery Ward, mail-order merchant, was born.
1854 Britain recognized the independence of Orange Free State (now South Africa).
1864 The Confederate submarine HL Hunley sank the Union ship Housatonic.
1867 Gyula Andressy became Premier of Hungary.
1870 Esther Morris was appointed the firstfemale Justice of the Peace in the United States.
1876 The first canned sardines were "produced" by Julius Wolff in Eastport, Maine.
1880 Tsar Alexander II of Russia survived an assassination attempt.
1897 The National Organization of Mothers (predecessor of the Parent Teacher Association) was formed.
1901 Composer Ethelbert Nevin died.
1905 Francis Willard became the first woman to be honored in the National Statuary Hall of the U. S. Capitol.
1907 Actor Buster Crabbe was born.
1909 Apache leader Geronimo died.
1911 Cadillac introduced the first automobile to have an electric starter.
1913 The first minimum wage law in the United States took effect in Oregon.
1924 Author Margaret Truman was born.
1925 Actor Hal Holbrook was born.
1926 An avalanche buried 75 persons in Sap Gulch, Bingham, Utah; 40 died.
1933 The first issue of Newsweek was published.
1934 The first high
school auto driving course was offered in State College,
1940 Singer Gene Pitney was born.
1944 The Battle of Eniwetok Atoll began.
1947 Voice of America began broadcasting to the U. S. S. R.
1949 Chaim Weitzman was elected the first President of Israel.
1950 A train crash in Rockville Center, New York, killed 31 persons.
19577 The Katie Jane Memorial Home for the Aged in Warrenton, Missouri, was destroyed by a fire that killed 72 residents.
1958 The first "B.C." comic strip was published.
1959 A new Italian
government was sworn into office, with Antonio Segni as Premier.
Actor Lou Diamond Phillips was born.
Comedian Daniel Lawrence Whitney, aka Larry the Cable
Guy, was born.
1968 The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame opened in Springfield, Massachusetts.
1969 Golda Meir was sworn in as Prime Minister of Israel.
British Parliament voted to join the European Common
Forty-nine persons died in a stampede for seats at a
soccer match in Cairo, Egypt.
1978 At least 54 persons were believed drowned when heavy seas struck a freighter and nine fishing boats off the east coast of Korea.
1979 Chinese troops invaded Vietnam.
1980 Buddy Baker won the Daytona 500.
1982 Jazz pianist Thelonius Monk died.
1985 Bill Elliott won the Daytona 500.
1988 Voyager 1 became the most distant man-made object in space.
1991 Ernie Irvan won the Daytona 500.
1995 Colin Fergusson was found guilty of killing 6 persons on the Long Island Rail Road in New York.
2002 Ward Burton won the Daytona 500.
2003 The London (England) Congestion Charge began.
2004 José López Portillo, former President of Mexico, died.
2006 A mudslide killed 1,126 persons in Southern Leyte, Philippines.
Kosovo declared its independence from Serbia.
2012 Christian Wulff resigned as President of Germany.
series of car bombings in Baghdad, Iraq, killed 37
persons and injured 130.
2014 "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" premiered on NBC.
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This page was last updated on February 16, 2018.