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Today in history: February 19

Celebrity birthdays, highlights in history, plus more facts about this day
/ Source: The Associated Press

Today is Sunday, Feb. 19, the 50th day of 2006. There are 315 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:
On Feb. 19, 1945, during World War II, some 30,000 U.S. Marines landed on Iwo Jima, where they began a monthlong battle to seize control of the island from Japanese forces.

On this date:
In 1803, Congress voted to accept Ohio’s borders and constitution.

In 1807, former Vice President Aaron Burr was arrested in Alabama. (He was subsequently tried for treason and acquitted.)

In 1846, the Texas state government was formally installed in Austin.

In 1878, Thomas Edison received a patent for his phonograph.

In 1881, Kansas became the first state to prohibit all alcoholic beverages.

In 1942, President Roosevelt signed an executive order giving the military the authority to relocate and intern Japanese-Americans as well as Japanese nationals living in the United States.

In 1942, about 150 Japanese warplanes attacked the Australian city of Darwin.

In 1963, the Soviet Union informed President Kennedy it would withdraw “several thousand” of an estimated 17,000 Soviet troops in Cuba.

In 1986, the U.S. Senate approved a treaty outlawing genocide, 37 years after the pact had first been submitted for ratification.

In 1997, Deng Xiaoping, the last of China’s major Communist revolutionaries, died.

Ten years ago: Republican presidential hopefuls argued taxes, trade and negative ads in a final burst of contentious campaigning on the eve of New Hampshire’s leadoff primary, with Bob Dole the principal target. Baseball showman Charlie O. Finley died in Chicago at age 77.

Five years ago: President Bush opened a museum commemorating the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing. Movie producer-director Stanley Kramer died in Woodland Hills, Calif., at age 87.

One year ago: Eight suicide bombers struck in quick succession in Iraq in a wave of attacks that killed dozens. Former Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton visited a Thai fishing village that had been devastated by the December 2005 tsunami. The USS Jimmy Carter, the last of the Seawolf class of attack subs, was commissioned at Groton, Conn.

Today’s Birthdays: Singer Smokey Robinson is 66. Singer Bobby Rogers (Smokey Robinson & the Miracles) is 66. Actress Carlin Glynn is 66. Singer Lou Christie is 63. Actor Michael Nader is 61. Rock musician Tony Iommi (Black Sabbath) is 58. Author Amy Tan is 54. Actor Jeff Daniels is 51. Rock singer-musician Dave Wakeling is 50. Talk show host Lorianne Crook is 49. Britain’s Prince Andrew is 46. Tennis Hall-of-Famer Hana Mandlikova is 44. Singer Seal is 43. Country musician Ralph McCauley (Wild Horses) is 42. Actress Justine Bateman is 40. Actor Benicio Del Toro is 39. Rock musician Daniel Adair is 31. Pop singer-actress Haylie Duff is 21.

Thought for Today: “There is, I think, nothing in the world more futile than the attempt to find out how a task should be done when one has not yet decided what the task is.” — Alexander Meiklejohn, American educator (1872-1964).