Today is Wednesday, Feb. 13, the 44th day of 2019. There are 321 days left in the year.
In 1633, Italian astronomer Galileo Galilei arrived in Rome for trial before the Inquisition, accused of defending Copernican theory that the Earth revolved around the sun instead of the other way around. (Galileo was found vehemently suspect of heresy, and ended up being sentenced to a form of house arrest.)
In 1861, Abraham Lincoln was officially declared winner of the 1860 presidential election as electors cast their ballots.
In 1935, a jury in Flemington, New Jersey, found Bruno Richard Hauptmann guilty of first-degree murder in the kidnap-slaying of Charles A. Lindbergh Jr., the 20-month-old son of Charles and Anne Lindbergh. (Hauptmann was later executed.)
In 1943, during World War II, the U.S. Marine Corps Women’s Reserve was officially established.
In 1945, during World War II, Allied planes began bombing the German city of Dresden. The Soviets captured Budapest, Hungary, from the Germans.
In 1974, Nobel Prize-winning Russian author Alexander Solzhenitsyn was expelled from the Soviet Union.
In 1984, Konstantin Chernenko (chehr-NYEN’-koh) was chosen to be general secretary of the Soviet Communist Party’s Central Committee, succeeding the late Yuri Andropov.
In 1988, the 15th Winter Olympics opened in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
In 1996, the rock musical “Rent,” by Jonathan Larson, opened off-Broadway.
In 1998, Dr. David Satcher was sworn in as the 16th Surgeon General of the United States during an Oval Office ceremony.
In 2013, beginning a long farewell to his flock, a weary Pope Benedict XVI celebrated his final public Mass as pontiff, presiding over Ash Wednesday services inside St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican.
U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. Charles E. “Chuck” Yeager (ret.) is 96. Actress Kim Novak is 86. Actor George Segal is 85. Singer-musician Peter Tork (The Monkees) is 77. Actress Stockard Channing is 75. Talk show host Jerry Springer is 75. Rock musician Todd Harrell (formerly with 3 Doors Down) is 47. Country musician Scott Thomas (Parmalee) is 46. Singer Robbie Williams is 45. Singer-songwriter Feist is 43. Rhythm-and-blues performer Natalie Stewart is 40. Actress Mena Suvari is 40. Rock musician Dash Hutton (Haim (HY’-ehm)) is 34.
Actress Katie Volding is 30. Michael Joseph Jackson Jr. (also known as Prince Michael Jackson I) is 22.