Born On This Day:
- Constantine the Great, AD 280
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, 1807
- Dame Ellen Terry, 1847
- Rudolf Steiner, 1861
- Hugo L. Black, 1886
- Lotte Lehmann, 1888
- David Sarnoff, 1891
- Marian Anderson, 1897
- Gene Sarazen, 1902
- John Steinbeck, 1902
- Franchot Tone, 1906
- Peter De Vries, 1910
- Joan Bennett, 1910
- Lawrence Durrell, 1912
- Irwin Shaw, 1913
- Dexter Gordon, 1923
- James Leo Herlihy, 1927
- Ariel Sharon, 1928
- Joanne Woodward, 1930
- Elizabeth Taylor, 1932
- Ralph Nader, 1934
- Howard Hesseman, 1940
- Michael Bolton, 1954
- James Worthy, 1961
- Chelsea Clinton, 1980
Died On This Day:
- the racehorse Eclipse, 1789
- Alexander Borodin, 1887
- Ivan Pavlov, 1936
- Harry Cohn, 1958
- Henry Cabot Lodge, 1985
- S. I. Hayakawa, 1992
- Lillian Gish, 1993
- Spike Milligan, 2002
- Fred Rogers (Mr. Rogers), 2003
- William F. Buckley, 2008
- Van Cliburn, 2013
- Leonard Nimoy, 2015
- 1594 - Henry IV crowned king of France.
- 1814 - Beethoven's Eighth Symphony first performed.
- 1869 - John Menard becomes first black person to make a speech in Congress.
- 1869 - Congress passes 15th Amendment: right to vote not denied on account of race, color or slavery.
- 1879 - Artificial sweetener saccharin discovered by Constantine Fahlberg and Ira Remsen.
- 1883 - Oscar Hammerstein of New York City patents the cigar rolling machine.
- 1900 - British labor party founded with Ramsay MacDonald as secretary.
- 1922 - Supreme Court upholds 19th Constitutional Amendment - Women can vote.
- 1922 - Reader's Digest begins publication on a $5,000 investment.
- 1933 - Burning of the Reichstag by Nazis (who blame it on Reds). Hitler suspends freedom of speech & press.
- 1942 - J.S. Hey at British Army Operational Research Group first observes sun's emission of radio waves.
- 1942 - French send first Jews to Nazi Germany.
- 1959 - Highest score in basketball history: Boston Celtics 179 over Minneapolis Lakers 139.
- 1972 - Richard Nixon ends visit to China; first U.S. President to visit country unrecognized by U.S.
- 2010 - Huge 8.8 earthquake and tsunami strike Chile; 452 dead, at least a half million homes destroyed.
Feast Day of Saint:
- Gabriel Possenti
- Noah's Arc Day
- Independence Day Dominican Republic (1844)
- Statehood Day in St. Christopher, Nevis & Anguilla (1967)
- TU BI-SHEBAT (Judaism) New Year for Trees, celebrated on 15th of lunar month Shebat.
- PRESIDENT'S DAY 3rd Monday in February observing births of Washington & Lincoln
- SHROVE TUESDAY (or Fat Tuesday). Day before Ash Wednesday. Also called Fasnacht (eve of the fast) in Germany and Austria, Carnival (farewell to meat) in Italy, Mardi Gras in Brazil and U.S., Street Urchins' Carnival in Denmark & Pancake Tuesday in Britain.
- ASH WEDNESDAY, moveable feast day celebrated 40 days (ex-Sundays) before Easter.
- PURIM or Feast of Lots (Jewish), celebrated on 14th or 15th of lunar month Adar.
- HOLI (Hindu festival of Spring and Vernal Fire)
- HOLA MOHALLA, Sikh Festival celebrated in India
- LENT, called Careme in France, Quaresima in Italy and the Great Fast in Eastern Orthodoxy. (between Feb and April)
- SUNDAY OF THE GREAT FIRES, first Sunday in Lent.
- CARLING SUNDAY, fifth Sunday in Lent celebrated in Britain
- MAHA SHIVARATRI, Hindu Festival of the Night of Shiva, celebrated mid-February
- TENG CHIEH, Feast of lanterns in China (Fifteenth day of the First Moon)
- CHINESE NEW YEAR celebrated all over the world in February
- SUPER BOWL SUNDAY - first Sunday in February from 2004
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