Saturday, February 18, 2012

February 18 in History

* 3102 B.C. In the Hindu chronology, the start of the Kali Yuga era (which will continue 432,000 years)
* 1229 – The Sixth Crusade: Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor signs a ten-year truce with al-Kamil, regaining Jerusalem, Nazareth, and Bethlehem with neither military engagements nor support from the papacy.
* 1268 – The Livonian Brothers of the Sword are defeated by Dovmont of Pskov in the Battle of Rakvere.
* 1332 – Amda Seyon I, Emperor of Ethiopia begins his campaigns in the southern Muslim provinces.
* 1478 – George, Duke of Clarence, convicted of treason against his older brother Edward IV of England, is executed in private at the Tower of London.
* 1637 – Eighty Years' War: Off the coast of Cornwall, England, a Spanish fleet intercepts an important Anglo-Dutch merchant convoy of 44 vessels escorted by 6 warships, destroying or capturing 20 of them.
* 1745 – The city of Surakarta, Central Java is founded on the banks of Bengawan Solo River, and becomes the capital of the Kingdom of Surakarta.
* 1781 – Fourth Anglo-Dutch War: Captain Thomas Shirley opened his expedition against Dutch colonial outposts on the Gold Coast of Africa (present-day Ghana).
* 1797 – French Revolutionary Wars: Sir Ralph Abercromby and a fleet of 18 British warships invade Trinidad.
* 1814 – Napoleonic Wars: The Battle of Montereau.
* 1846 – Beginning of the Galician peasant revolt.
* 1861 – In Montgomery, Alabama, Jefferson Davis is inaugurated as the provisional President of the Confederate States of America.
* 1861 – With the Italian unification almost complete, Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy and Sardinia assumes the title of King of Italy.
* 1865 – Union forces under Major General William T. Sherman set the South Carolina State House on fire during the burning of Columbia.
* 1873 – Bulgarian revolutionary leader Vasil Levski is executed by hanging in Sofia by the Ottoman authorities.
* 1878 – John Tunstall is murdered by outlaw Jesse Evans, sparking the Lincoln County War in Lincoln County, New Mexico.
* 1900 – Second Boer War: Imperial forces suffer their worst single-day loss of life on Bloody Sunday, the first day of the Battle of Paardeberg.
* 1906 – Edouard de Laveleye forms the Belgian Olympic Committee in Brussels.
* 1911 – The first official flight with air mail takes place in Allahabad, British India, when Henri Pequet, a 23-year-old pilot, delivers 6,500 letters to Naini, about 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) away.
* 1913 – Pedro Lascuráin becomes President of Mexico for 45 minutes; this is the shortest term to date of any person as president of any country.
* 1930 – While studying photographs taken in January, Clyde Tombaugh discovers Pluto.
* 1930 – Elm Farm Ollie becomes the first cow to fly in a fixed-wing aircraft and also the first cow to be milked in an aircraft.
* 1932 – The Empire of Japan declares Manzhouguo (the obsolete Chinese name for Manchuria) independent from the Republic of China.
* 1938 – During the Nanking Massacre Nanking Safety Zone International Committee renamed "Nanking International Rescue Committee" and safety zone in place for refugees falls apart.
* 1943 – The Nazis arrest the members of the White Rose movement.
* 1943 – Joseph Goebbels delivers his Sportpalast speech.
* 1946 – Sailors of the Royal Indian Navy mutinied in Mumbai harbour, from where it would spread throughout British India and involve 78 ships, 20 shore establishments and 20,000 sailors
* 1954 – The first Church of Scientology is established in Los Angeles, California.
* 1955 – Operation Teapot: Teapot test shot "Wasp" is successfully detonated at the Nevada Test Site with a yield of 1.2 kilotons. Wasp is the first of fourteen shots of the Teapot series.
* 1957 – Kenyan rebel leader Dedan Kimathi is executed by the British colonial government.
* 1957 – Walter James Bolton becomes the last person legally executed in New Zealand.
* 1965 – The Gambia becomes independent from the United Kingdom.
* 1969 – Hawthorne Nevada Airlines Flight 708 crashes into Mount Whitney killing all on board.
* 1970 – The Chicago Seven are found not guilty of conspiring to incite riots at the 1968 Democratic National Convention.
* 1972 – The California Supreme Court in the case of People v. Anderson, 6 Cal.3d 628 invalidates the state's death penalty and commutes the sentences of all death row inmates to life imprisonment.
* 1977 – The Space Shuttle Enterprise test vehicle is carried on its maiden "flight" on top of a Boeing 747.
* 1978 – The first Ironman Triathlon competition takes place on the island of Oahu, won by Gordon Haller.
* 1979 – Snow falls in the Sahara Desert in southern Algeria for the only time in recorded history.
* 1983 – Thirteen people die and one is seriously injured in the Wah Mee Massacre in Seattle, Washington. It is said to be the largest robbery-motivated mass-murder in U.S. history.
* 1991 – The IRA explodes bombs in the early morning at Paddington station and Victoria station in London.
* 2001 – FBI agent Robert Hanssen is arrested for spying for the Soviet Union. He is ultimately convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment.
* 2001 – Seven-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Dale Earnhardt dies in an accident during the Daytona 500.
* 2001 – Inter-ethnic violence between Dayaks and Madurese breaks out in Sampit, Indonesia, that will ultimately result in more than 500 deaths and 100,000 Madurese displaced from their homes.
* 2003 – Nearly 200 people die in the Daegu subway fire in South Korea.
* 2004 – Up to 295 people, including nearly 200 rescue workers, die near Neyshabur in Iran when a runaway freight train carrying sulfur, petrol and fertilizer catches fire and explodes.
* 2007 – Terrorist bombs explode on the Samjhauta Express in Panipat, Haryana, India, killing 68 people.
* 2010 – Nigerien rebels attacked the presidential palace in Niamey and replaced President Mamadou Tandja with a ruling junta, the Supreme Council for the Restoration of Democracy.

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