February, 2008 --365 days of Google Answers

"History is a vast early warning system" -- Norman Cousins

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On this day:

Friday, Feb. 1 (Day 32; 334 left):

* First edition of the Oxford English Dictionary is published in 1884. And it is still copyrighted because of the 1956 renewal:


Born on this date: John Ford (1894); Clark Gable (1901); Langston Hughes (1902)

Saturday, Feb. 2:

* Idi Amin comes to power after ousting Pres. Milton Obote in a coup in 1971. A noted film of his life, "The Last King of Scotland," would be made in 2006:


Born: James Joyce (1882); George Halas (1895); Ayn Rand (1905)


Sunday, Feb. 3:

* 'The Day the Music Died' -- Buddy Holly, Richie Valens and "The Big Bopper" Richardson killed in plane crash early on this day in 1959. The story behind American Pie, the song that memorialized it:


Born: Horace Greeley (1811); Elizabeth Blackwell (1821); Norman Rockwell (1894)

Monday, Feb. 4:

* John Marshall sworn in as chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court in 1801, one of only 17 men to hold the job:


Born: Tadeusz Kościuszko (1746): Charles Lindbergh (1902); Rosa Parks (1913)

Tuesday, Feb. 5: Constitution Day-- Mexico (36)

* King Leopold II of Belgium takes control of the Congo as a personal possession in 1885. His first administrator was Sir Francis de Winton:


Born: Williams S. Burroughs (1914); Robert Hofstadter (1915); Hank Aaron (1934)

Wednesday, Feb. 6: Ash Wednesday

Waitangi Day -- New Zealand

* Jack Kilby, of Texas Instruments, files the first patent for an integrated circuit in 1959:


Born: Nicolaus Bernoulli (1695); Babe Ruth (1895); Mary Leakey (1913)

Thursday, Feb. 7: Chinese New Year

* Dwight Eisenhower resigns as Army Chief of Staff in 1948, later becoming . Supreme Commander of the NATO. Eisenhower on leadership:


Born: Sir Thomas More (1478); John Deere (1804); Charles Dickens (1812)

Friday, Feb. 8:

* Boy Scouts of America founded in 1910 by William D. Boyce. You can find Eagle scouts from their database, which dates to 1912:


Born: William Tecumseh Sherman (1820); Jules Verne (1828); Dmitri Mendeleev (1834); James Dean (1931)

Saturday, Feb. 9:

* U.S. Weather Bureau created in 1870 and it is placed in the Signal Corps of the U.S. Army:


Born: William Henry Harrison (1773); Dean Rusk (1909); Bill Veeck (1914)


Sunday, Feb. 10:

* Queen Victoria (England) marries Prince Albert (Germany). She would live until 1901, despite several attempts on her life:


Born: YWCA (1870); Boris Pasternak (1890); Lon Chaney, Jr. (1906)

Monday, Feb. 11:

* Thomas Alva Edison, born on this day in 1847, liked Morse code so much that he proposed to his wife in it -- and nicknamed his kids "Dot" and "Dash". And you thought you were a geek?


Born: Paul Bocuse (12926); Leslie Nielsen (1926); Jeb Bush (1953)

Tuesday, Feb. 12: Lincoln's Birthday -- U.S.

National Foundation Day -- Japan

* Abraham Lincoln on the rights of states in an 1861 speech given after secession by the southern states:


Born: Cotton Mather (1663); Charles Darwin (1809); Omar Bradley (1893); Lorne Greene (1915)

Wednesday, Feb. 13:

* Agreement is reached for a two-stage reunification of Germany in 1990. The impact, written by a German Google Answers researcher:


Born: Georges Simenon (1903); William Shockley (1910); Chuck Yeager (1923)

Thursday, Feb. 14: Valentine's Day (45)

*It was Richard Cadbury who invented the heart-shaped Valentine's candy box in 1861:


Born: Winfield Scott Hancock (1824); John Barrymore (1884); Michael Bloomberg (1942)

Friday, Feb. 15:

* ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer), unveiled at the University of Pennsylvania in 1946, a possible start to the "Information Age" :


Born: Cyrus McCormick (1809); Ernest Shackleton (1874); Matt Groening (1945)

Saturday, Feb. 16:

* Studebaker Brothers Wagon Company founded in 1852 to make wagons. The Studebaker National Museum in South Bend tracks its history, including auto manufacturing:


Born: George F. Kennan (1904); Sonny Bono (1935); John McEnroe (1959)


Sunday, Feb. 17:

* Tie between Aaron Burr and Thomas Jefferson is resolved in the U.S. House of Representatives, with Jefferson being elected president in 1801. How Jefferson came to write the Declaration of Independence:


Born: Thomas Malthus (1766); The New Yorker Magazine (1925); Hal Holbrook (1925); Michael Jordan (1963)

Monday, Feb. 18: President's Day -- U.S. (49)

* Three months after his photograph, Clyde Tombaugh discovers the planet Pluto. Which was a planet until its demotion in 2006:


Born: Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848); Hans Asperger (1906); Wendell Wilkie (1892); Helen Gurley Brown (1922)

Tuesday, Feb. 19:

* Nicolaus Copernicus, Polish mathematician and astronomer, born in 1473. His "Copernican" world view may have been predated by Aristarchus of Samos:


Born: Lee Marvin (1924); Smokey Robinson (1940); Andrew, Duke of York (1960)

Wednesday, Feb. 20:

* Lt. "Butch" O'Hare becomes America's first World War II "ace" in 1942. Chicago's airport would be named for him. His father was a partner of Al Capone's in Chicago racetracks:


Born: Ansel Adams (1902); Sidney Poitier (1927); Gordon Brown (1951); Kurt Cobain (1967)

Thursday, Feb. 21:

* The Washington Monument is dedicated in 1885. What is written on the aluminum cap of the monument:


Born: Carl Czerny (1791); Charles Scribner (1821); Andrés Segovia (1893); Anaïs Nin (1903)

Friday, Feb. 22: Washington's Birthday -- U.S.

* The U.S. begins transcontinental air mail on this day in 1923. But there had been an earlier attempt by balloon from Lafayette, Indiana 64 years earlier:


Born: Robert Baden-Powell (1857); Heinrich Hertz (1857); Don Pardo (1918); Steve Irwin (1962)

Saturday, Feb. 23:

* Guantanamo Bay leased in perpetuity from the Cuban government in 1903. About its modern operation:


Born: W.E.B. DuBois (1868); William L. Shirer (1904); Michael Dell (1965)


Sunday, Feb. 24:

* Two months before dying, Ayatollah Khomeini issues a fatwa calling for the death of British author Salman Rusdie for his novel, "The Satanic Verses":


Born: Wilhelm Grimm (1786); Winslow Homer (1836); Honus Wagner (1874); Steve Jobs (1955)

Monday, Feb. 25:

* Muhammad Ali takes the heavyweight boxing crown for the first time by beating Sonny Liston at Miami in 1964:


Born: John Foster Dulles (1888); Jim Backus (1913); George Harrison (1943); Julio Iglesias (1973)

Tuesday, Feb. 26:

* Tim Berners-Lee introduces the first web browser, initially named "WordWideWeb" in 1991. The name was later changed to "Nexus":


Born: Victor Hugo (1802); Levi Strauss (1829); "Buffalo Bill" Cody (1846); Johnny Cash (1932)

Wednesday, Feb. 27:

* The first prisoners arrive at the infamous Andersonville prison in Georgia. The prison may have a connection to the "Christmas pickle" hanging on a tree:


Born: Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807); David Sarnoff (1891); John Steinbeck (1902); Elizabeth Taylor (1932)

Thursday, Feb. 28:

* Though they wouldn't publish until April 25, 1953 James Watson and Francis Crick announce to friends that they've determined the structure of DNA:


Born: Linus Pauling (1901); Bugsy Siegel (1906); Frank Gehry (1929)

Friday, Feb. 29:

* In the 1969 draft lottery, conducted for the Vietnam War, those born on this day were #285 in the draft order:


Born: Herman Hollerith (1860); Jimmy Dorsey (1904); Dinah Shore (1916); Khaled (1960)

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Expert Internet research by Google Answers research alumnus Missy-GA. Missy-GA is legendary for this account of 24 hours in a day at different points in history.