TODAY IN HISTORY | Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014

Today is Sunday, Feb. 16, the 47th day of 2014. There are 318 days left in the year.


On this date in:

1804: Lt. Stephen Decatur leads a successful raid into Tripoli Harbor to burn the U.S. Navy frigate Philadelphia, which had fallen into the hands of pirates during the First Barbary War.

1862: The Civil War Battle of Fort Donelson in Tennessee ends as some 12,000 Confederate soldiers surrender; Union Gen. Ulysses S. Grant’s victory earned him the nickname “Unconditional Surrender Grant.”

1868: The Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks is organized in New York City.

1923: The burial chamber of King Tutankhamen’s recently unearthed tomb is unsealed in Egypt by English archaeologist Howard Carter.

1937: Dr. Wallace H. Carothers, a research chemist for Du Pont who’d invented nylon, receives a patent for the synthetic fiber.

1945: American troops land on the island of Corregidor in the Philippines during World War II.

1959: Fidel Castro becomes premier of Cuba a month and a-half after the overthrow of Fulgencio Batista.

1961: The United States launches the Explorer 9 satellite.

1968: The nation’s first 911 emergency telephone system is inaugurated in Haleyville, Ala.

1977: Janani Luwum, the Anglican archbishop of Uganda, and two other men are killed in what Ugandan authorities said was an automobile accident.

1988: Seven people are shot to death during an office rampage in Sunnyvale, Calif., by a man obsessed with a co-worker who was wounded in the attack. (The gunman, Richard Farley, is on death row.)

1994: More than 200 people are killed when a powerful earthquake shakes Indonesia’s Sumatra island.

1998: A China Airlines Airbus A300-600R trying to land in fog near Taipei, Taiwan, crashes, killing all 196 people on board, plus six on the ground.

2004: A confident John Kerry launches a full-throttle attack on President George W. Bush’s economic policies, mostly ignoring his Democratic rivals on the eve of the Wisconsin primary.

2009: Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton arrives in Tokyo to begin her first trip abroad as President Barack Obama’s chief diplomat.


1989: William Carter, Youngstown’s affirmative action officer, says the Save Jobs Committee is correct in saying that companies receiving city loans have not been hiring Youngstown residents in sufficient numbers, but there is still time for the companies to make good on their promises.

The U.S. Office of Civil Rights says it will prosecute nursing homes, including some in the Mahoning Valley, that refuse to admit AIDS patients.

Reacting to a gas well fire near Jackson Elementary, where Niles Councilman Nick Bernard is principal, Bernard calls for legislation requiring guidelines for quickly and safely handling emergencies at wells.

1974: Barry Baker, Canfield city manager, is dismissed, with Mayor Jack Eversman saying City Council and Baker could not work together.

Youngstown police raid two houses and a warehouse over two days, resulting in the confiscation of three tons of loot and the belief that one of the area’s largest fencing operations has been broken.

Speaking to the USW District 26 leaders at Phillip Murray Hall in Youngstown, Gov. John J. Gilligan says the state will “accommodate” industry on Mahoning River pollution, enforcing the lowest standards allowed under federal law.

1964: A U.S.-designed supersonic air transport, the 1,500-mph giant that would fly from New York to Paris, may bring important new business to a relatively new Eastern Ohio industry, titanium, writes Vindicator Business Editor George R. Reiss.

Sharon, Pa., has begun discussing plans to celebrate its 125th anniversary with a week-long celebration in 1966.

Twenty-four top contestants in the Youngstown district of the Ohio High School Speech League will compete in the state finals in Columbus.

1939: The mercury drops to 7 below zero in Canfield and 17 below at Salem, the lowest temperatures recorded in five years.

Richard Sells, 24, Cleveland, charged with shooting with intent to kill during a holdup at the Palace Theater in Youngstown, is shot dead by Detective Sgt. Patrick Ryan when he attempts to escape near the Cuyahoga County Jail while he was being transferred for return to Mahoning County.

Austin Kennedy, 28, is burned about the face when a gasoline can catches fire while he was refueling a Mahoning County snow plow on Erskine Avenue.

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