• On Feb. 22, 1732, George Washington is born in Westmoreland County, Virginia. As leader of the Continental Army in the American Revolution, his success was due in part to his shrewd use of the “ungentlemanly,” but effective, tactic of guerrilla warfare against British armies used to close-formation battleline warfare.
• On Feb. 19, 1878, the technology that made possible the modern music business comes into existence in a New Jersey laboratory as Thomas Edison creates the first device to both record sound and play it back: the phonograph.
• On Feb. 18, 1885, Mark Twain publishes his famous — and famously controversial — novel “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.” Twain first introduced Huck Finn as the best friend of Tom Sawyer, hero of his novel “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” (1876).
• On Feb. 17, 1947, with the words, “Hello! This is New York calling,” the U.S. Voice of America begins transmitting its radio broadcasts into the Soviet Union. The VOA began in 1942 as a radio program designed to explain America’s policies during World War II and to bolster the morale of its allies.
• On Feb. 23, 1958, Formula One champion Juan Manuel Fangio of Argentina is kidnapped in Cuba by a group of Fidel Castro’s rebels.
Fangio was taken from his Havana hotel the day before the Cuba Grand Prix and was released unharmed after the race ended.
• On Feb. 21, 1970, national security adviser Henry Kissinger begins secret peace talks with North Vietnamese representative Le Duc Tho at a villa outside Paris. The North Vietnamese were demanding an unconditional U.S. withdrawal on a fixed date.
• On Feb. 20, 1998, American Tara Lipinski wins the gold medal in women’s figure skating at the Olympic Winter Games in Nagano, Japan, becoming the sport’s youngest gold medalist at age 15.
(c) 2020 Hearst Communications, Inc. All Rights Reserved