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Today in History for Feb. 14, 2014

Today is Friday, Feb. 14, the 45th day of 2014. There are 320 days left in the year. This is Valentine’s Day.

Today’s Highlight:

On Feb. 14, 1924, the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Co. of New York was formally renamed International Business Machines Corp., or IBM.

On this date:

In 1014, Henry II was crowned Holy Roman Emperor in Rome by Pope Benedict VIII.

In 1778, the American ship Ranger carried the recently adopted Stars and Stripes to a foreign port for the first time as it arrived in France.

In 1859, Oregon was admitted to the Union as the 33rd state.

In 1895, Oscar Wilde’s final play, “The Importance of Being Earnest,” opened at the St. James’s Theatre in London.

In 1903, the Department of Commerce and Labor was established. (It was divided into separate departments of Commerce and Labor in 1913.)

In 1912, Arizona became the 48th state of the Union as President William Howard Taft signed a proclamation.

In 1929, the “St. Valentine’s Day Massacre” took place in a Chicago garage as seven rivals of Al Capone’s gang were gunned down.

In 1949, Israel’s Knesset convened for the first time.

In 1963, Federico Fellini’s art-house classic “8½” was first released in Italy.

In 1979, Adolph Dubs, the U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, was kidnapped in Kabul by Muslim extremists and killed in a shootout between his abductors and police.

In 1984, 6-year-old Stormie Jones became the world’s first heart-liver transplant recipient at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh (she lived until Nov. 1990). Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean of Britain won the gold medal in ice dancing at the Sarajevo Olympics.

In 1989, Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini called on Muslims to kill Salman Rushdie, author of “The Satanic Verses,” a novel condemned as blasphemous.

Ten years ago: Guerrillas overwhelmed a police station west of Baghdad, killing 23 people and freeing dozens of prisoners. Twenty-eight people were killed when the glass-and-concrete roof of an indoor water park in Moscow collapsed.

Five years ago: Savoring his first big victory in Congress, President Barack Obama used his weekly radio and Internet address to celebrate the just-passed $787 billion economic stimulus bill as a “major milestone on our road to recovery.” Jazz drummer Louie Bellson, who’d performed with Duke Ellington and his late wife, Pearl Bailey, died in Los Angeles at age 84. Publisher Alfred A. Knopf Jr., 90, died in New York.

One year ago: Paralympic superstar Oscar Pistorius was charged with murdering his girlfriend at his home in South Africa, a stunning development in the life of a national hero known as the “Blade Runner” for his high-tech artificial legs. Billionaire Warren Buffett agreed to buy H.J. Heinz Co. for $23.3 billion in the richest deal ever in the food industry. American Airlines and US Airways announced an $11 billion merger that turned American into the world’s biggest airline.

Today’s birthdays: TV personality Hugh Downs is 93. Actress-singer Florence Henderson is 80. Actor Andrew Prine is 78. Country singer Razzy Bailey is 75. Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is 72. Jazz musician Maceo Parker is 71. Movie director Alan Parker is 70. Journalist Carl Bernstein is 70. Former Sen. Judd Gregg, R-N.H., is 67. TV personality Pat O’Brien is 66. Magician Teller (Penn and Teller) is 66. Cajun singer-musician Michael Doucet (Beausoleil) is 63. Actor Ken Wahl is 57. Opera singer Renee Fleming is 55. Actress Meg Tilly is 54. Pro Football Hall of Famer Jim Kelly is 54. Singer-producer Dwayne Wiggins is 53. Actor Enrico Colantoni is 51. Actor Zach Galligan is 50. Actor Valente Rodriguez is 50. Rock musician Ricky Wolking (The Nixons) is 48. Tennis player Manuela Maleeva is 47. Actor Simon Pegg is 44. Rock musician Kevin Baldes (Lit) is 42. Rock singer Rob Thomas (Matchbox Twenty) is 42. Actor Matt Barr is 30. Actor Jake Lacy is 28. Actress Tiffany Thornton is 28. Actor Freddie Highmore is 22.

Thought for today: “Age is strictly a case of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” — Jack Benny (born this date in 1894, died in 1974).

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

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