This Day in History - February 18

February 18

3102 BC – Epoch of the Kali Yuga

1129 – Jerusalem is retaken by Christians in a peace treaty between the Holy Roman Emperor, Frederik II, and Egyptian ruler Al-Kamil

1268 – The Livonian Brothers of the Sword are defeated by Dovmont of Pskov in the Battle of Rakovor

1294 – Mongolian emperor Kublai Khan dies

1332 – Amda Seyon I, Emperor of Ethiopia, begins his campaigns in the southern Muslim provinces

1478 – George, the Duke of Clarence, who had opposed his brother Edward IV, is executed in the Tower of London, allegedly by being drowned in a butt of Malmsey wine

1503 – Henry Tudor created Prince of Wales

1516 – Queen Mary I, “Bloody Mary,” is born

1519 – Spanish Conquistador, Hernan Cortes, leaves for the Yucatan Peninsula

1546 – German leader of the Protestant Reformation, Martin Luther, dies

1564 – Italian painter, architect and sculptor Michelangelo Buonarotti dies

1678 – John Bunyan’s “Pilgrim’s Progress” is published in London by Nathaniel Ponder

1688 – Quakers adopt the first formal antislavery resolution in America, in Germantown, Pennsylvania

1735 – The first opera performed in America, “Flora,” is held in Charleston, SC

1776 – Royal Governor John Murray, 4th Earl of Dunmore, sends a note to William Legge, 2nd Earl of Dartmouth, expressing his “inexpressible mortification” that British Major General Sir Henry Clinton had been dispatched to North Carolina, rather than the politically vital colony of Virginia

1795 – George Peabody, US merchant, and philanthropist, is born

1813 – Czar Alexander enters Warsaw at the head of his army

1817 – Confederate General Lewis Armistead is born

1838 – Austrian physicist Ernst Mach is born

1839 – The Detroit Boat Club is founded

1848 – Glassware artist Louis Comfort Tiffany is born

1850 – The California legislature creates nine Bay Area counties

1856 – The American Party, aka the “Known-Nothing Party,” convenes in Philadelphia to nominate its first and last presidential candidate, former president Millard Fillmore of New York

1859 – Yiddish author Shalom Aleichem is born

1861 – Victor Emmanuel II becomes the first King of Italy

1861 – Jefferson Davis is inaugurated as the Confederacy’s provisional president

1862 – President of both US Steel and Bethlehem Steel, Charles M. Schwab is born

1865 – Union troops force the Confederates to abandon Fort Anderson, NC

1878 – The bitter and bloody Lincoln County War begins with the murder of Billy the Kid’s mentor, John Tunstall

1879 – Sculptor Frederic Auguste Bartholdi is awarded patent for his design for the Statue of Liberty

1884 – Police seize all copies of Leo Tolstoy’s “What I Believe In”

1885 – Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is published

1892 – Presidential candidate Wendell Wilkie is born

1906 – American businessman who founded the John B. Stetson Company, John Batterson Stetson dies

1907 – 600,000 tons of grain is sent to Russia to relieve famine

1909 – Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Wallace Stegner is born

1913 – Raymond Poincare takes office as the President of France

1920 – Chalus and Vuillemin complete their first flight over the Sahara Desert

1922 – Editor of Cosmopolitan magazine, Helen Gurley Brown is born

1929 – The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announces the winners of the first Academy Awards

1929 – English spy writer Len Deighton is born

1930 – Astronomer Clyde W. Tombaugh discovers Pluto at the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona

1931 – Nobel laureate and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Toni Morrison is born

1932 – Manchurian independence is formally declared

1933 – Japanese and American singer and songwriter Yoko Ono is born

1934 – Poet Audre Lord is born

1935 – Rome reports sending troops to Italian Somalia

1939 – The Golden Gate Exposition opens in San Francisco

1943 – German General Erwin Rommel takes three towns in Tunisia, North Africa

1943 – Hans Scholl and his sister Sophie, leaders of the German youth group Weisse Rose, are arrested by the Gestapo for opposing the Nazi’s.  They are sentenced to death and beheaded on February 23

1944 – The US Army and Marines invade Eniwetok Atoll in the Pacific

1945 – US Marines storm Iwo Jima

1948 – Eamon de Valera steps down as the Irish Prime Minister

1953 – Bwana Devil, the first 3-D movie, opens in New York

1954 – East and West Berlin drop thousands of propaganda leaflets on one another after the end of a month-long truce

1954 – Actor, singer, and producer John Travolta is born

1959 – Ray Charles records “What’d I Say” at Atlantic Records

1962 – Robert Kennedy says that US troops will stay in Vietnam until communism is defeated

1964 – The US cuts military aid to five nations for having trade relations with Cuba

1965 – 26 are killed in an avalanche in British Columbia, Canada

1965 – The State Department sends secret cables to US Ambassadors in nine friendly nations to warn them of upcoming bombing operations in North Vietnam

1967 – The National Art Gallery in Washington agrees to buy a Da Vinci for a record $5 million

1967 – Italian soccer player Roberto Baggio is born

1967 – J. Robert Oppenheimer, the “father of the atomic bomb,” dies

1968 – Three US pilots that were held captive by the Vietnamese return to Washington

1972 – The California Supreme Court voids the death penalty

1974 – Randolph Hearst is ordered to give $2 million in food to the poor by the person who kidnapped his daughter, Patty

1974 – Russian tennis player Yevgeny Kafelnikov is born

1977 – The Space Shuttle Enterprise lifts off on its maiden voyage

1978 – Richard Petty wins the 21st annual Daytona 500

1978 – Hawaii hosts the first Ironman Triathlon

1982 – Mexico devalues the peso by 30 percent to fight an economic slide

2001 – Dale Earnhardt, Sr., one of the greatest drivers in NASCAR, suffers a last-lap crash at the 43rd Daytona 500 in Daytona Beach, Florida, and dies from head injuries

2001 – FBI agent Robert Philip Hanssen is arrested and charged with spying for Russia

2003 – 198 people are killed and 150 injured when an arsonist, Kim Dae-Han, sets a subway train ablaze in Daegu, South Korea.  Two subway drivers and five subway officials were charged with negligent manslaughter for failing to safely evacuate passengers and Dae-Han was sentenced to life in prison

2011 – Gary Leon Ridgway pleads guilty to the 1982 first-degree murder of Rebecca Marrero.  He was given his 49th life sentence without the possibility of parole and returned to Walla Walla, where he was already serving 48 consecutive life sentences, one for each of the women he killed in Washington State during his run as the “Green River Killer”

Written by Crystal McCann

Crystal is the Chief Operating Officer of Lanterns Media Network and the owner of Madisons Media. She lives in Texas with her husband and dogs and is the proud mother of two adult children.

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