TODAY IN HISTORY


Today is Tuesday, Feb. 16, the 47th day of 2021. There are 318 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Feb. 16, 1959, Fidel Castro became premier of Cuba a month and a-half after the overthrow of Fulgencio Batista.

On this date:

In 1862, the Civil War Battle of Fort Donelson in Tennessee ended as some 12,000 Confederate soldiers surrendered; Union Gen. Ulysses S. Grant’s victory earned him the moniker “Unconditional Surrender Grant.”

In 1868, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks was organized in New York City.

In 1945, American troops landed on the island of Corregidor in the Philippines during World War II.

In 1948, N-B-C T-V began airing its first nightly newscast, “The Camel Newsreel Theatre,” which consisted of Fox Movietone newsreels.

In 1960, the nuclear-powered radar picket submarine USS Triton departed New London, Conn., on the first submerged circumnavigation by a vessel.

In 1961, the United States launched the Explorer 9 satellite.

In 1968, the nation’s first 911 emergency telephone system was inaugurated in Haleyville, Alabama, as the speaker of the Alabama House, Rankin Fite, placed a call from the mayor’s office in City Hall to a red telephone at the police station (also located in City Hall) that was answered by U.S. Rep. Tom Bevill.

In 1996, 11 people were killed in a fiery collision between an Amtrak passenger train and a Maryland commuter train in Silver Spring, Md.

In 1998, a China Airlines Airbus A300 trying to land in fog near Taipei, Taiwan, crashed, killing all 196 people on board, plus seven on the ground.

In 2001, the United States and Britain staged air strikes against radar stations and air defense command centers in Iraq.

Today’s Birthdays: Actor William Katt is 70. Actor LeVar Burton is 64. Actor-rapper Ice-T is 63. Actor Lisa Loring is 63. International Tennis Hall of Famer John McEnroe is 62. Singer Sam Salter is 46.