It’s Thursday, Feb. 21, the 52nd day of 2013. There are 313 days left in the year.
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe is 89. Film/music company executive David Geffen is 70. Actor Alan Rickman is 67. Actress Tyne Daly is 67. Actor Anthony Daniels is 67. Tricia Nixon Cox is 67. Former Sen. Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, is 66. Actor William Petersen is 60. Actor Kelsey Grammer is 58. Country singer Mary Chapin Carpenter is 55. Actor William Baldwin is 50. Actress Ellen Page is 26.
— From wire reports
Highlight: In 1613, Mikhail Romanov, 16, was unanimously chosen by Russia’s national assembly to be czar, beginning a dynasty that would last three centuries.
In 1513, Pope Julius II, who had commissioned Michelangelo to paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, died nearly four months after the project was completed.
In 1862, Nathaniel Gordon became the first and only American slave-trader to be executed under the U.S. Piracy Law of 1820 as he was hanged in New York.
In 1885, the Washington Monument was dedicated.
In 1916, the World War I Battle of Verdun began in France as German forces attacked; the French were able to prevail after 10 months of fighting.
In 1925, The New Yorker magazine made its debut.
In 1945, during the World War II Battle of Iwo Jima, the escort carrier USS Bismarck Sea was sunk by kamikazes with the loss of 318 men.
In 1947, Edwin Land publicly demonstrated his Polaroid Land camera, which could produce a black-and-white photograph in 60 seconds.
In 1965, black Muslim leader and civil rights activist Malcolm X, 39, was shot to death inside the Audubon Ballroom in New York by assassins identified as members of the Nation of Islam.
In 1972, President Richard Nixon began his historic visit to China as he and his wife, Pat, arrived in Beijing.
In 1973, Israeli fighter planes shot down Libyan Arab Airlines Flight 114 over the Sinai Desert, killing all but five of the 113 people on board.
In 1986, Larry Wu-tai Chin, the first American found guilty of spying for China, killed himself in his Virginia jail cell.
Ten years ago: The owners of The Station nightclub in West Warwick, R.I., where 100 people perished in a fast-moving fire the night before, denied giving the rock band Great White permission to use fireworks blamed for setting off the blaze, although the band’s singer insisted the use of pyrotechnics had been approved.
Five years ago: Serb rioters broke into the U.S. Embassy in Belgrade and set part of it on fire during protests against Western support for an independent Kosovo. A Venezuelan plane crashed in the Andes, killing all 46 on board.
One year ago: Greeks were torn between relief and foreboding on the news that their country had received a new massive bailout — a $170 billion rescue package created by the 17-nation eurozone, with conditions. Publisher Barney Rosset, 89, who introduced the U.S. to such underground classics as “Tropic of Cancer" and “Lady Chatterley’s Lover," died in New York.