Today is Wednesday, Feb. 17, the 48th day of 2016 with 318 to follow.
The moon is waxing. Morning stars are Mercury and Venus. Evening stars are Mars, Saturn, Jupiter, Uranus and Neptune.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Aquarius. They include mail order retailer Aaron Montgomery Ward in 1843; engraver Frederic Ives in 1856; Texas oil millionaire H.L. Hunt in 1889; sportscaster Red Barber in 1908; author Margaret Truman Daniel, daughter of U.S. President Harry S. Truman, in 1924; actor Hal Holbrook in 1925 (age 90); actor Alan Bates in 1934; actor/football Hall of Fame member Jim Brown in 1936 (age 80); singer Gene Pitney in 1940; political activist Huey P. Newton in 1942; actor Brenda Fricker in 1945 (age 71); actor Rene Russo in 1954 (age 62); actor Richard Karn in 1956 (age 60); actor Lou Diamond Phillips in 1962 (age 54); comedian Larry the Cable Guy, born Daniel Whitney, in 1963 (age 53); basketball superstar Michael Jordan in 1963 (age 53); film director Michael Bay in 1965 (age 51); actor Jerry O'Connell in 1974 (age 42); heiress Paris Hilton 1981 (age 35) actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt in 1981 (age 35); actor Bonnie Wright in 1991 (age 25).
On this date in history:
In 1801, the U.S. House of Representatives chose Thomas Jefferson as the third president of the United States after he and Aaron Burr tied in the Electoral College. It took 35 House ballots before Jefferson won and Burr became vice president.
In 1904, Giacomo Puccini's "Madama Butterfly" premiered in Milan, Italy.
In 1909, Apache leader Geronimo died while under military confinement at Fort Sill, Okla.
In 1933, Newsweek magazine published its first issue.
In 1968, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame opened in Springfield, Mass.
In 1979, "A Prairie Home Companion," hosted by Garrison Keillor, made its debut on National Public Radio.
In 2005, U.S. President George W. Bush nominated John Negroponte to be the first director of national intelligence. Negroponte assumed office the following month.
In 2006, a landslide that covered a village in Leyte in the central Philippines killed more than 1,100 people, including scores of children in an elementary school that was buried by mud and boulders.
In 2008, the province of Kosovo declared independence from Serbia. Thousands of ethnic Albanians celebrated in the streets but others resorted to violent protest. The United States and several other countries, including Britain, Germany, and France, recognized Kosovo as a sovereign and independent state.
In 2009, General Motors and Chrysler asked for an additional $14 billion from the government to keep from going bankrupt. That upped their total requests to $39 billion.
In 2011, the British government advised same-sex couples they could form civil partnerships in church if they wished.
In 2014, "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" made its debut on NBC.
A thought for the day: Aldous Huxley wrote, "Experience is not what happens to you; it's what you do with what happens to you."