What Happened in February 1859

Historical Events

  • Feb 4 The Codex Sinaiticus is discovered in Egypt.
  • Feb 5 Wallachia and Moldavia are united under Alexander John Cuza as the United Principalities.
  • Feb 10 Gen Horsford defeats Begum of Oude & Nana Sahib in Indian mutiny
  • Feb 14 Oregon admitted as 33rd state of the Union
  • Feb 16 The French Government passes a law to set the A-note above middle C to a frequency of 435 Hz, in an attempt to standardize the pitch.

Music releaseMusic Premiere

Feb 17 Giuseppe Verdi's opera "Un Ballo in maschera" premieres in Napoli

Composer Giuseppe Verdi
Giuseppe Verdi
  • Feb 25 1st use of "insanity plea" to prove innocence
  • Feb 26 Paul Morphy's chess match vs Augustus Mongredien begins; Morphy wins
  • Feb 28 Arkansas legislature requires free blacks to choose exile or slavery

Famous Birthdays

  • Feb 1 Victor Herbert, composer (Babes in Toyland, Kiss in Dark), born in Dublin, Ireland
  • Feb 2 Havelock Ellis, US physician/sexologist (Psychology of Sex)
  • Feb 3 Hugo Junkers, German aircraft designer (d. 1935)
  • Feb 4 Timofei Mikhailov, Russian revolutionary, member of Narodnaya Volya (d. 1881)
  • Feb 8 John H Been, town's archivist of Brielle (Baasje & Witkop)
  • Feb 10 Alexandre Millerand, French President (d. 1943)
  • Feb 13 Frank van de Goes, Dutch writer/marxist theorist
  • Feb 13 William Strang, Scottish painter/engraver
  • Feb 14 George Washington Gale Ferris, engineer/inventor (Ferris Wheel)
  • Feb 18 Sholem Aleichem, [Solomon Rabinowitz], author (Fiddler on the Roof)
  • Feb 19 Svante August Arhenius, Swedish physicist/chemist (Nobel 1903)

Famous Deaths

  • Feb 6 Johannes Josephus Viotta, composer, dies at 45
  • Feb 23 Zygmunt KrasiƄski, Polish Romantic poet (b. 1812)
  • Feb 26 Ferdinand Lukas Schubert, composer, dies at 64