ON THIS DAY: February 1, 2019

February 1st is

Robinson Crusoe Day *

Baked Alaska Day *

Change Your Password Day *

National Freedom Day *

National Get Up Day *

Spunky Old Broads Day *


MORE! Leila Denmark, Langston Hughes and Leymah Gbowee, click



Celtic and Pagan – Imbolic (Northern Hemisphere) aka Brigid’s Day – Gaelic traditional spring festival, now observed by Celtic neopagans and Wiccans; Christianized as Saint Brigid’s Day or Candlemass

Pagan – Lammas (Southern Hemisphere)

Canada and United States –
Black History Month begins

Hungary – Republic Memorial Day

Ireland – Feast of Brigid

Malaysia – Federal Territory Day

Mauritius –
Abolition of Slavery Commemoration

Monserrat – St. Brigid’s Day

Nicaragua –Air Force Day

Rwanda – National Heroes’ Day


On This Day in HISTORY

484 – Vandal King Huneric, a fervent adherent to Arianism (lacking belief in the Holy Trinity, but in Jesus as the separate, subordinate son of God), organizes a meeting between Catholic and Arian bishops

1261 – Walter de Stapledon born, Bishop of Exeter, founder of Exeter College, Oxford

Exeter College Chapel, Oxford

1327 – 14-year-old Edward III is crowned King of England after his mother, Isabella of France, and her lover Roger Mortimer depose his father, but Mortimer is the de facto ruler until three years later, when Edward leads a successful coup against him

1552 – Sir Edward Coke born, English barrister and judge; as Attorney General, he led the prosecution of Robert Devereux, Sir Walter Raleigh and the Gunpowder Plot conspirators; considered the greatest jurist of the Elizabethan–Jacobean period

1587 – Queen Elizabeth I signs the death warrant for Mary Queen of Scots

1635 – Marquard Gude born, German classical scholar and proto-archeologist, who collected Greek and Latin inscriptions and copied manuscripts during his travels

1662 – The Chinese Ming dynasty general Koxinga – Cheng Chen-Gong, Prince of Yanping – seizes the island of Taiwan after a nine-month siege of the Dutch colonists in Dutch Formosa

1671 – Francesco Stradivari born, Italian violin maker, son of Antonio Stradivari, master luthier

1690 – Francesco Maria Veracini born, Italian composer and violinist

1709 – Robinson Crusoe Day * – Alexander Selkirk, a Scottish sailor who was put ashore on the uninhabited island of Juan Fernandez after a quarrel with his captain in September 1704, is finally rescued – his adventures are Daniel Defoe’s inspiration for Robinson Crusoe

1761 – Christiaan Hendrik Persoon born, South African mycologist (studies mushrooms) and taxonomist; noted for establishing starting points for fungal taxonomy (defining and naming groups of biological organisms.) He was sent to Europe for schooling at age 13, where he first studied theology, but switched to medicine in 1784, earning a doctorate in 1799. He moved to Paris in 1802, and spent the rest of his life there.  The earliest of his works, Abbildungen der Schwämme  (Illustrations of the fungi), was published in three parts, in 1790, 1791, and 1793. He began publishing the results of his pioneering work in fungi with Synopsis methodica fungorum in 1801; he was elected a corresponding member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences in 1815

1788 – Isaac Briggs and William Longstreet patent the steamboat

1790 – The U.S. Supreme Court convenes for the first time in New York City

1814 – Lord Byron’s poem, The Corsair, sells 10,000 copies on the day of publication

1835 – Slavery is abolished in Mauritius

1836 – Emil Hartmann born, Danish organist and composer

1842 – The City Dispatch Post in NYC begins operations, the first company to offer adhesive postage stamps in the western hemisphere

1859 – Victor Herbert born, Irish-American cellist, composer, and conductor

1861 – Texas votes to secede from the Union, over Governor Sam Houston’s objections; he is removed from office when he refuses to swear loyalty to the Confederacy, but he also refuses a Union Army offer of help to put down the Confederate rebellion

1862 – Julia Ward Howe’s “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” is first published in the Atlantic Monthly

1865 –  National Freedom Day * – President Abraham Lincoln signs the 13th Amendment outlawing slavery

1866 – Agda Meyerson born, Swedish nursing pioneer, lecturer and advocate for improving the wages, education and working conditions of nurses; worked for the Swedish Red Cross (1898-1907); first deputy chair of the Swedish Nursing Association in 1910

1867 – U.S. bricklayers start working an 8-hour day

1867 – This may be (exact date not confirmed) the day that Charles Ranhofer, pastry chef and witty social commentator at the famed Delmonico’s Restaurant, finished his creation, originally called “Alaska, Florida” but now called Baked Alaska, * which is Ranhofer’s commentary on “Seward’s Folly” – the $7 million proposed U.S. purchase of Alaska

1873 – Joseph Allard born, Canadian fiddler and composer

1884 – The first volume, A to Ant, of the Oxford English Dictionary is published

1887 – Charles Nordhoff born, English-American lieutenant, pilot, and author

1893 – Thomas A. Edison finishes construction of the first motion picture studio, the Black Maria in West Orange, New Jersey

1895 – Fountains Valley, Pretoria, the oldest nature reserve in Africa, is proclaimed by President Paul Kruger

1896 – Puccini’s opera La Boheme premieres in Turin

1898 – Leila A. Denmark born, pioneering American pediatrician and medical researcher; co-developer of the pertussis vaccine (aka whooping cough), for which she receives the 1935 Fisher Award; she becomes the world’s oldest practicing pediatrician when she retires at age 103, after 73 years of practicing medicine

1900 – Eastman Kodak Co. introduces the $1 Brownie box camera

1902 – Langston Hughes born, American poet-author-playwright, major figure in NY’s Harlem Renaissance

1904 –S. J. Perelman born, American humorist, playwright and screenwriter; best known for his short humor pieces for The New Yorker, and his 1956 Academy Award-winning screenplay for Around the World in 80 Days, starring David Niven

1907 – Camargo Guarnieri born, Brazilian pianist and composer

1913 – NYC’s Grand Central Station opens. the world’s largest train station at the time

1918 – Russia adopts the Gregorian Calendar

1918 – Muriel Spark born, Scottish playwright and poet, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie

1921 – Renata Tebaldi born, Italian Spinto soprano

1921 – Patricia Robins born, British author of children’s books, historic novels and fiction series; during WWII, was a Women’s Auxiliary Air Force officer using her knowledge of German, acquired as a student in Switzerland and Germany; then tracked Nazi bombers with Britain’s early radar system; noted for Frost in the Sun, and trilogies Women of Fire Saga and The Rochford Trilogy

1924 – The United Kingdom recognizes the USSR

1924 – Richard Hooker born, American novelist,  M*A*S*H*

1927 – Galway Kinnell born, American poet; 1982 Pulitzer Poetry Prize and co-winner of National Book Award; Vermont’s Poet Laureate (1989- 1993)

1930 – The Times publishes its first crossword puzzle

1934 – Bob Shane born, American folksinger, Kingston Trio

1936 – Azie Taylor Morton born, first African American and 8th woman appointed as U.S. Treasurer (1977-1981); also served on President Kennedy’s Committee on Equal Employment Opportunity

1939 – Fritjof Capra, born in Austria, American physicist, author, The Tao of Physics

1939 –  Martha Tilton, Benny Goodman and his orchestra record “And the Angels Sing”

1939 – Ekaterina Maximova born, Soviet Bolshoi ballet star (1958-1980); named a People’s Artist of the USSR in 1973

1942 – Josef Terboven, Reichskommissar of German-occupied Norway, appoints Vidkun Quisling the Minister President of the National Government

1942 – Voice of America, the official external radio and television service of the United States government, begins broadcasting with programs aimed at areas controlled by the Axis powers

1946 – Trygve Lie of Norway is chosen to be the first United Nations Secretary-General

1946 – The Parliament of Hungary abolishes the monarchy after nine centuries, and proclaims the Hungarian Republic

1947 – Jessica Savitch born, American TV journalist; one of the first women to anchor an evening network news broadcast alone on NBC Nightly News; original host of the PBS public affairs documentary program Frontline until she was killed an automobile accident in October, 1983

1951 – The first telecast of an atomic explosion

1952 – In Tunisia, there is a general strike against French colonial management

1954 – The Secret Storm debuts on CBS-TV

1958 – All Black South African men are required to carry “reference” (pass) books

1960 – Four black students stage the first Greensboro NC sit-ins at a lunch counter

1964 – The Beatles have their first number one hit in the United States with “I Want to Hold Your Hand”

1965 – The Hamilton River in Labrador, Canada is renamed the Churchill River in honour of Winston Churchill

1967 – Meg Cabot born, American young adult author and screenwriter; The Princess Diaries; has teamed with the Make-A-Wish Foundation to mentor seriously ill children, and held a Tiara Auction to benefit the New York Public Library’s teen programs

1968 – Canada’s three military services, the Royal Canadian Navy, the Canadian Army and the Royal Canadian Air Force, are unified into the Canadian Forces

1972 – Leymah Gbowee born, Liberian activist, leader of grassroots women’s peace movement against the Second Liberian Civil War, recipient of the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize

1972 – Kuala Lumpur, which has existed from 1859, is granted status as a city by Royal charter. It becomes a Federal Territory in 1974. Kuala Lumpur is the national capital and largest city in Malaysia

1979 – Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini returns to Iran after nearly 15 years of exile

1982 – Senegal and the Gambia form a loose confederation known as Senegambia; it is designed to promote cooperation, but is dissolved in 1989 by Senegal when Gambia declines to move closer to uniting the two countries

1992 – The Chief Judicial Magistrate of Bhopal court declares  Warren Anderson, ex-CEO of Union Carbide, a fugitive for failing to appear in the Bhopal disaster case

1998 – Lillian E. Fishburne becomes the first female African American Rear Admiral in the U.S. Navy

2005 – Spunky Old Broads Day * is part of Dr. Gayle Carson’s launch of her book, How To Be An S.O.B. – A Spunky Old Broad Who Kicks Butt

2009 – The first cabinet of Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir is formed in Iceland, making her the country’s first female prime minister and the world’s first openly LGBT head of state

2012 – Change Password Day * was created by Gizmodo and Lifehacker as an annual day to help keep your online data secure by changing your passwords – remember, once somebody gets the dates of your family’s birthdays, or the names of your children or pets, it’s an easy hack to get into your private information, so be creative and pick something less obvious

2013 – The Shard, the tallest building in the European Union, opens in London

2017 – U.S. Figure Skating founds National Get Up Day * to inspire everyone to Get Up when we stumble and fall, and they have been collecting stories of perseverance in adversity to share at #GetUpDay


About wordcloud9

Nona Blyth Cloud has lived and worked in the Los Angeles area for over 50 years, spending much of that time commuting on the 405 Freeway. After Hollywood failed to appreciate her genius for acting and directing, she began a second career managing non-profits, from which she has retired. Nona has now resumed writing whatever comes into her head, instead of reports and pleas for funding. She lives in a small house overrun by books with her wonderful husband.
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