Today in History

Today in History


274Feb 27Constantine I was born. He became the great Roman emperor (324-337) who adopted Christianity.
425Feb 27Theodosius effectively founded a university in Constantinople.
1167Feb 27Robert of Melun, English philosopher, bishop of Hereford, died.
1425Feb 27Moscow’s Grand Duke Vasilii died and his brother-in-law, Vytautas, became guardian of his son, Vasilii, and daughter, Sophia.
1526Feb 27Saxony and Hesse formed the League of Gotha, a league of Protestant princes.
1531Feb 27German Protestants formed the League of Schmalkalden to defend themselves against Charles V and the Roman Catholic states.
1557Feb 27The 1st Russian Embassy opened in London.
1563Feb 27William Byrd, English composer, was appointed organist at Lincoln Cathedral.
1622Feb 27Rembrandt Carel Fabritius (d.1654), Dutch painter, was born.
1649Feb 27Johann Philipp Krieger, composer, was born.
1670Feb 27Jews were expelled from Austria by order of Leopold I.
1700Feb 27The Pacific Island of New Britain was discovered. It is the largest of group of islands in the South Pacific, NE of New Guinea.
1706Feb 27John Evelyn, diarist, died.
1733Feb 27Johann Adam Birkenstock (46), composer and sandal designer, died.
1735Feb 27Dr. John Arbuthnot (b.1667), English physician, satirist and polymath, died
1746Feb 27Gian Francesco Fortunati, composer, was born.
1801Feb 27The District of Columbia was placed under the jurisdiction of Congress.
1807Feb 27Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (d.1882), was born in Portland, Maine. He was an American poet famous for “The Children’s Hour,” and “Evangeline.” “What is time? The shadow on the dial, the striking of the clock, the running of the sand, day and night, summer and winter, months, years, centuries””these are but arbitrary and outward signs, the measure of Time, not Time itself. Time is the Life of the soul.”
1813Feb 27The 1st federal vaccination legislation was enacted.
1814Feb 27Ludwig von Beethoven’s 8th Symphony in F, premiered.
1814Feb 27Napoleon’s Marshal Nicholas Oudinot was pushed back at Barsur-Aube by the Emperor’s allied enemies shortly before his abdication.
1823Feb 27William Buel Franklin (d.1903), Major General (Union volunteers), was born.
1827Feb 27Richard W. Johnson (d.1897), Bvt Major General (Union Army), was born.
1836Feb 27Mexican forces under General Jose de Urrea defeated Texan forces at the Battle of San Patricio.
1841Feb 27[Eleanor] Agnes Lee, daughter of US general Robert E. Lee, was born.
1844Feb 27Dominican Republic rebels, under the leadership of Francisco del Rosario Sanchez and Ramon Mella, launched their uprising and gained independence from Haiti (National Day).
1848Feb 27Charles Hubert H. Parry, musicologist, composer (Jerusalem), was born in England.
1850Feb 27Henry Edwards Huntington, US railroad exec, was born.
1854Feb 27Composer Robert Schumann was saved from a suicide attempt in Rhine.
1860Feb 27Abraham Lincoln spoke at the Great Hall of Cooper Union College in NYC: “Let us have faith that right makes might, and in that faith, let us, to the end, dare to do our duty as we understand it.”
1861Feb 27In the Warsaw massacre Russian troops fired on a crowd protesting Russian rule over Poland. Five marchers were killed.
1864Feb 27The 6th and last day of battle at Dalton, Georgia, (about 600 casualties).
1865Feb 27A Civil War skirmish took place near Sturgeon, Missouri.
1873Feb 27Enrico Caruso (d.1921), was born. He was the Italian operatic lyric tenor who excelled in operas such as Pagliacci.
1879Feb 27Constantine Fahlberg discovered saccharin, an artificial sweetener.
1883Feb 27Oscar Hammerstein patented the 1st cigar-rolling machine.
1886Feb 27Hugo L. Black (d.1971) was born in Alabama. He became the 78th Supreme Court Justice (1937-71) and wrote opinions forbidding prayer in schools (Sen-D-Ala).
1887Feb 27Alexander Porfiryevich Borodin (53), Russian physician, composer (Prince Igor), died.
1888Feb 27Lotte Lehmann, German opera singer, was born.
1891Feb 27David Sarnoff, RCA Board Chairman and a pioneer of U.S. television, was born.
1895Feb 27Rudolf von Eschwege, German fighter pilot with 20 victories in World War I, was born. He was the only German fighter pilot on the Macedonian Front.
1897Feb 27Miriam Anderson, was born. She became a world renown opera singer and civil rights pioneer, and is best remembered for singing “My Country Tis of Thee” in front of the Lincoln Memorial.
1899Feb 27Charles H. Best, physiologist, co-discoverer of Insulin, was born in Maine.
1902Feb 27John Steinbeck (d.1968), American novelist (Nobel 1962), was born in Salinas, Ca. He authored “The Grapes of Wrath,” “Of Mice and Men” and “The Log from the Sea of Cortez.” “A man, after he has brushed off the dust and chips of his life, will have left only the hard, clean question: Was it good or was it evil? Have I done well””or ill?”
1904Feb 27James T. Farrell (d.1979), author (Young Lonigan), was born. In 2004 Robert K. Landers authored “The Life and Times of James T. Farrell.”
1905Feb 27Japanese pushed Russians back in Manchuria, and cross the Sha River.
1908Feb 27Baseball’s sacrifice fly was adopted. It was repealed in 1931 and was  reinstated in 1954.
1908Feb 27The forty-sixth star was added to the U.S. flag, signifying Oklahoma’s admission to statehood.
1910Feb 27Peter De Vries, writer, poetry editor (Reuben Reuben, Prick of Noon)(Poetry Magazine, The New Yorker), was born.
1912Feb 27Lawrence Durrell, English novelist and poet, was born. His books included “The Alexandria Quartet.” In 1998 Ian MacNiven wrote the biography: “Lawrence Durrell.”
1913Feb 27Irwin Shaw, US novelist (Rich Man Poor Man), was born.
1917Feb 27John Connally, Texas Governor, wounded in the assassination of President John Kennedy, was born.
1919Feb 271st public performance of Gustav Holst’s “Planets.”
1920Feb 27The US rejected a Soviet peace offer as propaganda.
1922Feb 27G.B. Shaw’s “Back to Methuselah I/II” premiered in NYC.
1925Feb 27Glacier Bay National Monument was dedicated in Alaska.
1927Feb 27For the 2nd Sunday in a row golfers in SC were arrested for violating Sabbath.
1929Feb 27Briton Hadden (b.1898) co-founder of Time Magazine with his Yale classmate Henry Luce, died of a mysterious infection. In 2006 Isaiah Wilner authored “The Man Time Forgot,” a biography of Hadden.
1930Feb 27Joanne Woodward, actress, was born. Her films included “Rachel, Rachel” and “The Three Faces of Eve.”
1932Feb 27Elizabeth Taylor, actress, was born. Her films included “Cleopatra” and “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”
1933Feb 27Jean Genet’s “Intermezzo,” premiered in Paris.
1934Feb 27Ralph Nader, consumer advocate, was born. He was Connecticut lawyer who invented the automobile safety movement. His 1965 book “Unsafe at Any Speed” characterized the Chevrolet Corvair as unsafe and pushed for a congressional investigation.
1935Feb 27Mirella Freni, lyric soprano (Madame Butterfly), was born in Modena, Italy.
1936Feb 27Ivan P. Pavlov (86), Russian physiologist (reflexes, “drooling dog” Nobel 1904), died.
1938Feb 27Britain and France recognized the Franco government in Spain.
1939Feb 27Nadezjda K. Krupskaja (70), Russian revolutionary, wife of Lenin, died.
1941Feb 27Jewish musicians came together in Berlin and performed Gustav Mahler’s Second Symphony. In 2001 Martin Goldsmith authored “The Inextinguishable Symphony: A True Story of Music and Love in Nazi Germany.”
1942Feb 27The 1st transport of French Jews left to Nazi Germany.
1947Feb 27Gidon Kremer, violinist (Tchaikovsky Prize 1970), was born in Riga, Latvia.
1949Feb 27Chaim Weizmann became the 1st Israeli president.
1951Feb 27The 22nd Amendment to the US Constitution, limiting a president to two terms of office, was ratified.
1953Feb 27F-84 Thunderjets raided North Korean base on Yalu River. A year after leaving West Point, Lt. Joe Kingston was en route to Korea, where he, like a lot of others, found himself retreating and advancing in a single day.
1956Feb 27Female suffrage was granted in Egypt.
1957Feb 27Mao made his speech “On Correct Handling of Contradictions Among People.”
1958Feb 27Harry Cohn, CEO of Columbia Pictures, died of a heart attack.
1960Feb 27The U.S. Olympic hockey team defeated the Soviets, 3-2, at the Winter Games in Squaw Valley, Calif. The U.S. team went on to win the gold medal.
1962Feb 27South Vietnamese president Ngo Dinh Diem was unharmed as two planes bombed the presidential palace in Saigon. The 1st US national was killed. Although Diem had shortcomings as a leader, he had led South Vietnam for eight years and at the time of his death was attempting to deal with Buddhist factionalism.
1963Feb 27The USSR said that 10,000 troops would remain in Cuba.
1964Feb 27“What Makes Sammy Run?” opened at 84th St Theater in NYC for 540 performances.
1968Feb 27CBS News anchorman Walter Cronkite”˜s commentary on the progress of the Vietnam War solidified President Lyndon B. Johnson”˜s decision not to seek reelection in 1968. Cronkite, who had been at Hue in the midst of the Tet Offensive earlier in February, said: “Who won and who lost in the great Tet Offensive against the cities? I”˜m not sure.” He concluded: “It is increasingly clear to this reporter that the only rational way out…will be to negotiate, not as victors but as an honorable people who lived up to their pledge to defend democracy, and did the best they could.” Johnson called the commentary a “turning point,” saying that if he had “lost Cronkite,” he”˜d “lost Mr. Average Citizen.” On March 31, Johnson announced he would not seek reelection.
1969Feb 27President Nixon arrived in Rome from West Berlin amid protests by thousands of students.
1973Feb 27U.S. Supreme Court ruled that a Virginia pool club could not bar residents because of color.
1976Feb 27The final meeting between Mao tse Tung and Richard Nixon took place.
1979Feb 27Jane M. Byrne confounded Chicago’s Democratic political machine as she upset Mayor Michael A. Bilandic to win their party’s mayoral primary. Byrne went on to win the election.
1980Feb 27Chelsea Clinton, daughter of President Clinton (1993-2001), was born in Little Rock, Ark.
1982Feb 27Wayne B. Williams was found guilty of murdering two of the 28 young blacks whose bodies were found in the Atlanta area over a 22-month period.
1985Feb 27In San Francisco the Irwin Memorial Blood Bank said that 80 Bay Area residents have received blood since 1979 from donors who are know to have contracted AIDS.
1986Feb 27The U.S. Senate approved telecasts of its debates on a trial basis.
1987Feb 27“Washington Week In Review” celebrated its 20th anniversary on PBS.
1988Feb 27Katarina Witt of East Germany won the gold medal in women’s figure skating at the Winter Olympics in Calgary, Canada, with Elizabeth Manley of Canada placing second and Debi Thomas of the United States, third. Debi Thomas became the first African American to win a medal at the Winter Olympics.
1989Feb 27President Bush warned of what he called the “fool’s gold” of trade protectionism as he addressed South Korea’s National Assembly before returning home.
1990Feb 27The US Supreme Court ruled that prison officials could force inmates to take powerful anti-psychotic drugs without a judge’s consent.
1991Feb 27In San Francisco wrecking balls began demolishing the Embarcadero Freeway.
1992Feb 27Tiger Woods (16) became the youngest PGA golfer in 35 years.
1993Feb 27Jose Duval (72), actor and singer, died. He played coffee pitchman Juan Valdez.
1994Feb 27The Winter Olympic Games ended in Lillehammer, Norway.
1995Feb 27Court-appointed salvagers swarmed into Britain’s oldest investment bank to evaluate the remaining assets of Barings PLC after Nick Leeson, a 28-year-old trader, ruined the firm by gambling on Tokyo stock prices.
1996Feb 27Bob Dole won the North Dakota and South Dakota primaries, while Steve Forbes captured Arizona’s winner-take-all primary.
1997Feb 27A jury in Fayetteville, N.C., convicted former Army paratrooper James N. Burmeister of murdering a black couple so he could get a skinhead tattoo. He was later sentenced to life in prison.
1999Feb 27Western planes bombed targets in southern Iraq and Baghdad claimed that 23 people were wounded.
2000Feb 27Minister Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam ended 2 decades of bitter rivalry and embraced W. Deen Mohammad, son of the late Elijah Mohammad (d.1975), onetime leader of the black Muslims.
2001Feb 27President Bush went before Congress with a $1.9 trillion spending plan that would sharply reduce growth in many government programs while leaving room to give Americans the biggest tax cut in two decades.
2002Feb 27Alicia Keys won in 5 categories at the 44th annual Grammy Awards. Train won for best rock song: “Drops of Jupiter,” U2 won for best record of the year: “Walk On,” and Various Artists won the album of the year: “O Brother, Where Art Thou.”
2003Feb 27The Bush administration lowered the terror alert threat to code yellow.
2004Feb 27A federal judge in NY threw out 1 of 5 counts against Martha Stewart (62). She said prosecutors failed to prove that Stewart intended to commit securities fraud in her Dec 21, 2001, sale of ImClone Systems shares. 4 lesser charges remained.
2005Feb 27Iran and Russia signed a deal that would deliver nuclear fuel to the Middle East country for the startup of its first reactor.
2006Feb 27The US and Colombia reached a free trade agreement after nearly 2 years of negotiations. The pact needed approval by the legislatures of both countries.
2007Feb 27The Dow Jones industrial average dropped 416.02 points, the worst drop since the 2001 terrorist attacks.
2008Feb 27The euro finished above $1.50 for the first time after US Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s testimony supported market expectations of another US rate cut.
2009Feb 27President Barack Obama outlined his plan for withdrawing combat troops from Iraq by Aug. 31, 2010.
2010Feb 27President Barack Obama signed a one-year extension of several provisions in the nation’s main counterterrorism law, the Patriot Act.
2011Feb 27In Fremont, Ca., about 15 robbers with guns and rifles accosted 6 employees at Unigen and escaped with $37 million in computer components. In April 5 suspects were arrested and charged with the robbery.
2012Feb 27Colorado’s sec. of state said enough signatures have bee collected to allow a measure for the legalization of marijuana for recreational use to go before voters in November.
2013Feb 27The US Senate confirmed Jacob J. Lew (57) as treasury secretary.
2014Feb 27The United Arab Emirates’ state news agency said two crew members have been killed in the crash of a military training aircraft.
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Credit: Timelines of History



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