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Today in History - Feb. 13

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

Today is Tuesday, Feb. 13, the 44th day of 2007. There are 321 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:
On Feb. 13, 1935, a jury in Flemington, N.J., found Bruno Richard Hauptmann guilty of first-degree murder in the kidnap-slaying of the son of Charles and Anne Lindbergh. (Hauptmann was later executed.)

On this date:
In 1542, the fifth wife of England’s King Henry VIII, Catherine Howard, was executed for adultery.

In 1795, the University of North Carolina became the first U.S. state university to admit students with the arrival of Hinton James, who was the only student on campus for two weeks.

In 1914, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, known as ASCAP, was founded in New York.

In 1920, the League of Nations recognized the perpetual neutrality of Switzerland.

In 1945, during World War II, the Soviets captured Budapest, Hungary, from the Germans.

In 1945, Allied planes began bombing the German city of Dresden.

In 1960, France exploded its first atomic bomb, in the Sahara Desert.

In 1980, opening ceremonies were held in Lake Placid, N.Y., for the 13th Winter Olympics.

In 1984, Konstantin Chernenko 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.

Ten years ago: Discovery’s astronauts hauled the Hubble Space Telescope aboard the shuttle for a 1 billion-mile tuneup to allow it to peer even deeper into the far reaches of the universe. On Wall Street, the Dow Jones industrial average broke through the 7,000 barrier for the first time, ending the day at 7,022.44.

Five years ago: John Walker Lindh pleaded not-guilty in federal court in Alexandria, Va., to conspiring to kill Americans and supporting the Taliban and terrorist organizations. Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II made former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani an honorary knight. In a startling development at the Salt Lake City winter games, the head of the French Olympic team said the French figure skating judge had been pressured to “act in a certain way” before she voted to give the gold medal to the Russians in pairs. Country singer Waylon Jennings died in Chandler, Ariz., at age 64.

One year ago: Auditors reported that millions of dollars in Hurricane Katrina disaster aid had been squandered, paying for such items as a $450 tattoo and $375-a-day beachfront condos. Joey Cheek won the men’s 500 meters, giving the U.S. its second speedskating gold medal of the Turin Games. Hannah Teter won gold and Gretchen Bleiler won silver in the halfpipe. Tatiana Totmianina and Maxim Marinin won the gold medal in pairs figure skating, extending Russia’s four-decade dominance of the event.

Today’s Birthdays: Former test pilot Charles E. “Chuck” Yeager is 84. Actress Kim Novak is 74. Actor George Segal is 73. Actor Bo Svenson is 66. Actress Carol Lynley is 65. Singer-musician Peter Tork (The Monkees) is 65. Actress Stockard Channing is 63. Talk show host Jerry Springer is 63. Singer Peter Gabriel is 57. Actor David Naughton is 56. Rock musician Peter Hook is 51. Actor Matt Salinger is 47. Singer Henry Rollins is 46. Actor Neal McDonough is 41. Singer Freedom Williams is 41. Actress Kelly Hu is 39. Rock musician Todd Harrell (3 Doors Down) is 35. Singer Robbie Williams is 33. Rhythm-and-blues performer Natalie Stewart (Floetry) is 28. Actress Mena Suvari is 28.

Thought for Today: “The world has no sympathy with any but positive griefs; it will pity you for what you lose, but never for what you lack.” — Anne Sophie Swetchine, Russian-French author (1782-1857).