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1. On February 18, 1735, Georgia's founder and philanthropist James Oglethorpe established the first official settlement in the colony of Georgia, named Savannah. This settlement would become the colonial capital and a crucial center of trade in Georgia and the South.

2. A notable event in Georgia civil rights history happened on February 18, 1960, when several African American students from Atlanta's Spellman College and Morehouse College staged a sit-in at the whites-only lunch counter at the downtown Atlanta Rich's department store. This peaceful protest marked a significant step in the local and national civil rights movement, influencing the desegregation of public places.

3. One of Georgia's most beloved musicians, Johnny Mercer, was born on February 18, 1909, in Savannah. Mercer went on to become a multi-talented songwriter, composer, and performer whose hits include popular songs like "Moon River," "Jeepers Creepers," and "Accentuate the Positive."

4. On February 18, 1861, Georgia joined six southern states to form a new confederation as they seceded from the United States, leading ultimately to the start of the Civil War. Georgia's decision to secede was in part due to its steadfast support of slavery, which it saw as crucial to its agricultural economy.

5. Another notable event in Georgia military history happened on February 18, 1943, when more than 500 World War II volunteers from Georgia and nearby states reported for duty at the U.S. Army's Fort Stewart near Hinesville. These soldiers would go on to form the 3rd Infantry Division, which became one of the most decorated Army units in the war and helped turn the tide of the conflict.

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