February 15 events in history

590 Khosrau II is crowned king of Persia
706 Byzantine emperor Justinian II has his predecessors Leontios and Tiberios III publicly executed in the Hippodrome of Constantinople
1113 Pope Paschal II issues a bill sanctioning the establishment of the Order of Hospitallers
1493 While on board the Niña, Christopher Columbus writes an open letter (widely distributed upon his return to Portugal) describing his discoveries and the unexpected items he came across in the New World
1637 Ferdinand III becomes Holy Roman Emperor
1690 Constantin Cantemir, Prince of Moldavia and the Holy Roman Empire sign a secret treaty in Sibiu, stipulating that Moldavia would support the actions led by the House of Habsburg against the Ottoman Empire
1764 The city of St. Louis, Missouri is established
1798 The Roman Republic is proclaimed after Louis Alexandre Berthier, a general of Napoleon, had invaded the city of Rome five days earlier
1804 The Serbian revolution begins
1835 The first constitutional law in modern Serbia is adopted
1862 American Civil War: General Ulysses S. Grant attacks Fort Donelson, Tennessee
1870 Stevens Institute of Technology is founded and offers the first Bachelors of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering
1879 Women's rights: American President Rutherford B. Hayes signs a bill allowing female attorneys to argue cases before the Supreme Court of the United States
1898 The battleship USS Maine explodes and sinks in Havana harbor in Cuba, killing 274. This event leads the United States to declare war on Spain
1901 The association football club Alianza Lima is founded in Lima, Peru, under the name Sport Alianza
1909 The Flores Theater fire in Acapulco, Mexico kills 250
1921 Kingdom of Romania establishes its legation in Helsinki
1923 Greece becomes the last European country to adopt the Gregorian calendar
1925 1925 serum run to Nome: The serum arrives in Nome, Alaska, with Balto being the lead dog of the last team
1933 In Miami, Florida, Giuseppe Zangara attempts to assassinate President-elect Franklin D. Roosevelt, but instead shoots Chicago mayor Anton J. Cermak, who dies of his wounds on March 6, 1933
1942 World War II: Fall of Singapore. Following an assault by Japanese forces, the British General Arthur Percival surrenders. About 80,000 Indian, United Kingdom and Australian soldiers become prisoners of war, the largest surrender of British-led military personnel in history
1944 World War II: The assault on Monte Cassino, Italy, begins
1944 World War II: The Narva Offensive begins
1945 World War II: Third day of bombing in Dresden
1946 ENIAC, the first electronic general-purpose computer, is formally dedicated at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia
1949 Gerald Lankester Harding and Roland de Vaux begin excavations at Cave 1 of the Qumran Caves, where they will eventually discover the first seven Dead Sea Scrolls
1952 King George VI is buried in St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle
1953 Parliamentary elections held in Liechtenstein
1954 Canada and the United States agree to construct the Distant Early Warning Line, a system of radar stations in the far northern Arctic regions of Canada and Alaska
1961 Sabena Flight 548 crashes in Belgium, killing 73, including the entire United States figure skating team, several coaches and family members
1965 A new red-and-white maple leaf design is adopted as the flag of Canada, replacing the old Canadian Red Ensign banner
1971 The decimalisation of British coinage is completed on Decimal Day
1972 Sound recordings are granted U.S. federal copyright protection for the first time
1972 José María Velasco Ibarra, serving as President of Ecuador for the fifth time, is overthrown by the military for the fourth time
1976 The 1976 Constitution of Cuba is adopted by national referendum
1979 Don Dunstan resigns as Premier of South Australia, ending a decade of sweeping social liberalisation
1982 The drilling rig Ocean Ranger sinks during a storm off the coast of Newfoundland, killing 84 workers
1989 Soviet war in Afghanistan: The Soviet Union officially announces that all of its troops have left Afghanistan
1991 The Visegrád Agreement, establishing cooperation to move toward free-market systems, is signed by the leaders of Czechoslovakia, Hungary and Poland
1996 At the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in China, a Long March 3 rocket, carrying an Intelsat 708, crashes into a rural village after liftoff, killing many people
1999 Abdullah Öcalan, leader of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), is arrested in Kenya
2000 Indian Point II nuclear power plant in New York vents a small amount of radioactive steam when a steam generator fails
2001 First draft of the complete human genome is published in Nature
2003 Protests against the Iraq war take place in over 600 cities worldwide. It is estimated that between 8 million to 30 million people participate, making this the largest peace demonstration in history
2013 A meteor explodes over Russia, injuring 1,500 people as a shock wave blows out windows and rocks buildings. This happens unexpectedly only hours before the expected closest ever approach of the larger and unrelated asteroid 2012 DA14
2014 Renaud Lavillenie of France breaks Sergey Bubka's world record in pole vault with a mark of 6.16 m