February 12th in History

This day in historyFebruary 12 is the 43rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 322 days remaining until the end of the year (323 in leap years).



In 881,  Pope John VIII crowns Charles the Fat, the King of Italy: Holy Roman Emperor

In 1429,  English forces under Sir John Fastolf defend a supply convoy carrying rations to the army besieging Orléans from attack by the Comte de Clermont and Sir John Stewart of Darnley in the Battle of Rouvray (also known as the Battle of the Herrings).

In 1502,  Vasco da Gama sets sail from Lisbon, Portugal, on his second voyage to India.

In 1541,  Santiago, Chile is founded by Pedro de Valdivia.

In 1554,  A year after claiming the throne of England for nine days, Lady Jane Grey is beheaded for treason.

In 1593,  Japanese invasion of Korea: Approximately 3,000 Joseon defenders led by general Kwon Yul successfully repel more than 30,000 Japanese forces in the Siege of Haengju.

In 1689,  The Convention Parliament declares that the flight to France in 1688 by James II, the last Roman Catholic British monarch, constitutes an abdication.

In 1692,  Hendrick Hamel, Dutch sailor and bookkeeper (b. 1630) dies. He was the first Westerner to write and experience first-hand in the Joseon Dynasty era in Korea (1666). He later wrote “Hamel’s Journal and a Description of the Kingdom of Korea, 1653-1666”, published after his return to the Netherlands. Hendrick Hamel was born and died in Gorinchem. He was a bookkeeper with the Dutch East India Company (the VOC). In 1653, while heading for Japan on the ship ‘De Sperwer’ (the Sparrowhawk), he was shipwrecked on Jeju Island off the southern coast of Korea along with thirty-five of his crewmates. 36 of the 64 members of the crew survived the shipwreck, and the men were promptly taken into custody and sent to Seoul (where the king was Hyojong of Joseon, who ruled from 1649 to 1659). They were forbidden to leave the country, but they were given some freedom to move and mix with the different classes of Korean society. After thirteen years, Hamel and seven of his crewmates managed to escape to Japan, and from there to the Netherlands. In 1666, three different publishers published his report, describing their improbable adventure and giving the first detailed and accurate description of Korea to Europe.

In 1733,  Englishman James Oglethorpe founds Georgia, the 13th colony of the Thirteen Colonies, and its first city at Savannah (known as Georgia Day).

In 1771,  Gustav III becomes the King of Sweden.

Sculpture of Allen by Larkin Goldsmith Mead.

In 1789,  Ethan Allen, American farmer, soldier, and politician (b. 1738) died at home. He was a farmer; businessman; land speculator; philosopher; writer; and American Revolutionary War patriot, hero, and politician. He is best known as one of the founders of the U.S. state of Vermont, and for the capture of Fort Ticonderoga early in the American Revolutionary War along with Benedict Arnold. Ethan Allen was born in Litchfield, Connecticut, the first-born child of Joseph and Mary Baker Allen, both of English and Puritan descent.

In 1816,  The Teatro di San Carlo, the oldest working opera house in Europe, is destroyed by fire.

In 1817,  An Argentine/Chilean patriotic army, after crossing the Andes, defeats Spanish troops on the Battle of Chacabuco.

In 1818,  Bernardo O’Higgins formally approves the Chilean Declaration of Independence near Concepción, Chile.

In 1825,  The Creek cede the last of their lands in Georgia to the United States government by the Treaty of Indian Springs, and migrate west.

In 1832,  Ecuador annexes the Galápagos Islands.

In 1851,  Edward Hargraves announces that he has found gold in Bathurst, New South Wales, Australia, starting the Australian gold rushes.

In 1855,  Michigan State University is established.

In 1894,  Anarchist Émile Henry hurls a bomb into the Cafe Terminus in Paris, France, killing one and wounding 20.

In 1909,  The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is founded.

In 1909,  New Zealand’s worst maritime disaster of the 20th century happens when the SS Penguin, an inter-island ferry, sinks and explodes at the entrance to Wellington Harbour.

In 1912,  The Xuantong Emperor, the last Emperor of China, abdicates.

In 1914,  In Washington, D.C., the first stone of the Lincoln Memorial is put into place.

In 1934,  The Austrian Civil War begins.

In 1934,  In Spain the national council of Juntas de Ofensiva Nacional-Sindicalista decides to merge the movement with the Falange Española.

In 1935,  USS Macon, one of the two largest helium-filled airships ever created, crashes into the Pacific Ocean off the coast of California and sinks.

In 1946,  World War II: Operation Deadlight ends after scuttling 121 of 154 captured U-boats.

In 1946,  African American United States Army veteran Isaac Woodard is severely beaten by a South Carolina police officer to the point where he loses his vision in both eyes. The incident later galvanizes the Civil Rights Movement and partially inspires Orson Welles‘ film Touch of Evil.

In 1947,  A meteor creates an impact crater in Sikhote-Alin, in the Soviet Union.

In 1947,  Christian Dior unveils a “New Look“, helping Paris regain its position as the capital of the fashion world.

In 1961,  Soviet Union launches Venera 1 towards Venus.

In 1963,  Construction begins on the Gateway Arch in St. Louis.

In 1968,  Phong Nhị and Phong Nhất massacre.

In 1974,  Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1970, is exiled from the Soviet Union.

Sal mineo Allan Warren.jpgIn 1976,  Sal Mineo, American actor (b. 1939) was murdered when he was stabbed to death in the alley behind his apartment building in West Hollywood, California. He was an American film and theatre actor, best known for his performance as John “Plato” Crawford opposite James Dean in the film Rebel Without a Cause, He was twice nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, for his roles in Rebel Without a Cause and Exodus.

In 1990,  Carmen Lawrence becomes the first female Premier in Australian history when she becomes Premier of Western Australia.

In 1992,  The current Constitution of Mongolia comes into effect.

In 1994,  Four men break into the National Gallery of Norway and steal Edvard Munch‘s iconic painting The Scream.

In 1999,  United States President Bill Clinton is acquitted by the United States Senate in his impeachment trial.


In 2000,  Oliver, American singer (b. 1945) died of cancer at the age of 54. William Oliver Swofford was an American pop singer. Born in North Wilkesboro, North Carolina, he began singing as an undergraduate at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the early 1960s. He was a member of two music groups — The Virginians and, later, The Good Earth — and was then known as Bill Swofford. His clean-cut good looks and soaring tenor voice were the perfect vehicle for the uptempo single entitled “Good Morning Starshine” from the pop/rock musicalHair,” which reached No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 in July 1969, sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc by the R.I.A.A. a month later.  Later that fall, a softer, ballad single entitled “Jean” (the theme from the Oscar-winning film The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie) bested his previous effort by one, reaching No. 2 on the Hot 100 and No. 1 on the Billboard Easy Listening chart. Written by longtime beatnik poet Rod McKuen, “Jean” also sold over one million copies, garnering Oliver his second gold disc in as many months. Performing both hits on a number of TV variety shows and specials in the late 1960s, including The Ed Sullivan Show, helped both songs. He died on the same day that two other notable people also died; Tom Landry and Charles Schulz both died on the same day as Oliver.

In 2000,  Tom Landry, American football player and coach (b. 1924) dies. He was an American football player and coach. He is ranked as one of the greatest and most innovative coaches in National Football League (NFL) history, creating many new formations and methods. He invented the now popular 4–3 defense, and the “flex defense” system made famous by the “Doomsday Defense” squads he created during his 29 year tenure with the Dallas Cowboys. His 29 years as the coach of one team are an NFL record, along with his 20 consecutive winning seasons. Landry won two Super Bowl titles (VI, XII), 5 NFC titles, 13 Divisional titles, and compiled a 270-178-6 record, the 3rd most wins of all time for an NFL coach. His 20 career playoff victories are the most of any coach in NFL history. He was named the NFL Coach of the Year in 1966 and the NFC Coach of the Year in 1975. His most impressive professional accomplishment is his 20 consecutive winning seasons (1966–1985), an NFL record that remains unbroken and unchallenged. From 1966 to 1982 Dallas played in 12 NFL or NFC Championship games, a span of 17 years. More impressive is the Cowboys’ appearance in 10 NFC Championship games in the 13-year span from 1970 to 1982. Leading the Cowboys to 3 Super Bowl appearances in four years between 1975 and 1978, and five in nine years between 1970 and 1978, and being on television more than any other NFL team is what spawned the title of “America’s Team“, a title Landry did not appreciate because he felt it would bring on extra motivation from the rest of the league to compete with the Cowboys. In 2013, a major new biography of Landry was published, entitled The Last Cowboy.

In 2000, Charles M. Schulz, American cartoonist, created Peanuts (b. 1922) died in his sleep at home on February 12, 2000 at around 9:45 pm, from complications arising from his colon cancer. He was an American cartoonist, best known for the comic strip Peanuts (which featured the characters Snoopy and Charlie Brown, among others). He is widely regarded as one of the most influential cartoonists of all time, cited as a major influence by many later cartoonists. Calvin and Hobbes-creator Bill Watterson wrote in 2007: “Peanuts pretty much defines the modern comic strip, so even now it’s hard to see it with fresh eyes. The clean, minimalist drawings, the sarcastic humor, the unflinching emotional honesty, the inner thoughts of a household pet, the serious treatment of children, the wild fantasies, the merchandising on an enormous scale — in countless ways, Schulz blazed the wide trail that most every cartoonist since has tried to follow. Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Schulz grew up in Saint Paul. He was the only child of Carl Schulz, who was born in Germany, and Dena Halverson, who was Norwegian. His uncle called him “Sparky” after the horse Spark Plug in Billy DeBeck‘s comic strip, Barney Google. At its height, Peanuts was published daily in 2,600 papers in 75 countries, in 21 languages. Over the nearly 50 years that Peanuts was published, Schulz drew nearly 18,000 strips. The strips themselves, plus merchandise and product endorsements, produced revenues of more than $1 billion per year, with Schulz earning an estimated $30 million to $40 million annually. During the life of the strip, Schulz took only one vacation, a five-week break in late 1997 to celebrate his 75th birthday; reruns of the strip ran during his vacation, the only time reruns occurred while Schulz was alive.

In 2001,  NEAR Shoemaker spacecraft touches down in the “saddle” region of 433 Eros, becoming the first spacecraft to land on an asteroid.

In 2002,  The trial of Slobodan Milošević, the former President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, begins at the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague, Netherlands. He dies four years later before its conclusion.

In 2002,  An Iran Airtour Tupolev Tu-154 crashes in the mountains outside Khorramabad, Iran while descending for a landing at Khorramabad Airport, killing 119.

In 2004,  The city of San Francisco, California begins issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples in response to a directive from Mayor Gavin Newsom.

In 2009,  Colgan Air Flight 3407 crashes into a house in Clarence Center, New York while on approach to Buffalo Niagara International Airport, killing all on board and one on the ground.

In 2014, A massive winter storm across states in the southern United States causes widespread power outages, travel disruptions and dangerous road conditions.

In 2014, The Boy Scouts of America said Wednesday that it lost 6 percent of its membership after an often-bruising year in which it announced it would accept openly gay boys for the first time, over the objections of some participants who eventually left the organization.

In 2014, The IRS will require employers who terminate employees to show that they did so for “bona fide business reasons” in order to be eligible for delaying the ObamaCare health insurance employer mandate. Under new guidelines announced on February 10, the IRS will delay the mandate until 2016 for medium-sized businesses employing between 50 and 99 people. Businesses with 49 employees or fewer are not required to provide their employees with health insurance coverage under ObamaCare, as the Affordable Care Act is generally called.

In 2015, The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) was the official export credit agency of the United States federal government. Operating as a government corporation, the bank finances and insures foreign purchases of United States goods for customers unable or unwilling to accept credit risk. According to its charter, the Ex-Im Bank does not compete with private sector lenders, but rather provides financing for transactions that would otherwise not take place because commercial lenders are either unable or unwilling to accept the political or commercial risks inherent in the deal. The bank was established in 1934 by an executive order, and made an independent agency in the Executive Branch by Congress in 1945. It was last chartered for a three-year term in 2012 and extended in September 2014 through June 30, 2015. Congressional authorization for the bank lapsed as of July 1, 2015. As a result, the bank could not engage in new business, but it continued to manage its existing loan portfolio.

Congressman Stephen Fincher (R-TN) introduced H.R.-597 in 2015 via a rarely used discharge petition and added to a major transportation funding bill. Ultra Lefties Elizabeth Warren, Chuck Schumer, and Maxine Waters support the Export-Import “Bank”.

The Ex-Im bank is a medium sized fed agency that has quietly been dispensing loan subsidies and guarantees for years to a small group of favored companies. It is a lobbyist’s dream because it operates under the radar. It was PRECISELY the kind of federal agency that should have been terminated by conservative Republicans.

In 2016,  Pope Francis met Patriarch Kirill at José Martí International Airport in Cuba, the first meeting between the pontiff of the Catholic Church and the primate of the Russian Orthodox Church, together they signed the Havana Declaration.

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