- 1653 – Arcangelo Corelli, Italian violinist and composer (d. 1713) Who names their kid Archangel?
- 1781 – René Laennec, French physician, invented the stethoscope (d. 1826) Huh. Not something you'd think about, but I suppose someone had to invent it.
- 1844 – Aaron Montgomery Ward, American businessman, founded Montgomery Ward (d. 1913) Who remembers Montgomery Ward? Jesus, we're old.
- 1848 – Albert Gustaf Dahlman, Swedish executioner (d. 1920) "After being run over by a tram, he never regained health... ."
- 1863 – A group of citizens of Geneva founded an International Committee for Relief to the Wounded, which later became known as the International Committee of the Red Cross. So that's why Switzerland and the Red Cross have similar flags.
- 1904 – Madama Butterfly receives its première at La Scala in Milan. Notable because only one person dies in it.
- 1925 – Hal Holbrook, American actor and director Still pretending to be Mark Twain
- 1934 – Barry Humphries, Australian comedian, actor, and author Still pretending to be Dame Edna Everage
- 1957 – Loreena McKennitt, Canadian singer-songwriter, accordion player, and pianist Has a song on every New Age Celtic album ever.
- 19?? – LSH is born. A date that will live in infamy. (Just kidding, Honey!)
- 1963 – Michael Jordan, American basketball player and actor Arguably the greatest basketball player of all time.
- 1968 – In Springfield, Massachusetts, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame opens. What are the odds that the Basketball Hall of Fame opens on the fifth birthday of Michael Jordan?
- 1977 – Wong Choong Hann, Malaysian badminton player Someone has to be famous for playing badminton
February 17, 2015
On this day in history (thanks Wikipedia!)