What Happened in February 1936

Historical Events

  • Feb 4 1st radioactive substance produced synthetically (radium E)

Film Release

Feb 5 "Modern Times", silent film directed by, written by and starring Charlie Chaplin, is released

  • Feb 5 National Wildlife Federation forms
  • Feb 6 IV Winter Olympic Games open in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany

Music History

Feb 6 Pravda criticizes Dmitri Shostakovich's ballet "Clear Brook"

  • Feb 7 A flag is authorized for US Vice President
  • Feb 7 Felix the Cat, animated film released by Van Beuren Studios licensed from Otto Messmer
  • Feb 8 1936 NFL Draft (first ever): Jay Berwanger from University of Chicago first pick by Philadelphia Eagles
  • Feb 8 1st ski jumping tournament at Red Wing, Minnesota
  • Feb 8 1st successful Toronto Maple Leaf penalty shot, Conacher vs Rangers
  • Feb 8 German alpine skier Christi Cranz wins the inaugural Olympic women’s combined gold medal at the Garmisch-Partenkirchen Winter Games ahead of teammate Käthe Grasegger
  • Feb 8 Pandit Jawaharlal succeeds Mahatma Gandhi as chairman of India Congress Party
  • Feb 9 German skier Franz Pfnür wins the inaugural Olympic men’s combined gold medal at the Garmisch-Partenkirchen Winter Games ahead of teammate Gustav Lantschner
  • Feb 11 Pumping begins to build Treasure Island in San Francisco Bay
  • Feb 13 Ivar Ballangrud of Norway narrowly misses winning all 4 speed skating events at the Garmisch-Partenkirchen Winter Olympics; finishes 2nd in 1,500m just 1.0s behind teammate Charles Mathiesen
  • Feb 14 Karl Schäfer of Austria wins his 2nd consecutive men’s figure skating Olympic gold medal at the Garmisch-Partenkirchen Winter Games in Germany
  • Feb 14 National Negro Congress organizes in Chicago
  • Feb 14 Norwegian speed skater Ivar Ballangrud sets Olympic record 17:24.3 to win the 10,000m at the Garmisch-Partenkirchen Winter Games; his 3rd gold medal from 4 events and 4th career Olympic gold
  • Feb 14 US female Figure Skating championship won by Maribel Vinson
  • Feb 14 US male Figure Skating championship won by Robin Lee
  • Feb 15 -60°F (-51°C), Parshall, North Dakota (state record)

Volkswagen Beetle

Feb 15 Adolf Hitler announces construction of the Volkswagen Beetle (the People's Car, aka the Käfer/Beetle)

  • Feb 15 Great Britain’s 0-0 tie with the US is enough to clinch their first ever Olympic ice hockey gold medal at the Garmisch-Partenkirchen Winter Games; breaks Canada’s 4 straight Games golden streak

Olympic Gold

Feb 15 Sonja Henie of Norway becomes the most successful Olympic figure skater ever by winning her 3rd consecutive gold medal at the Garmisch-Partenkirchen Winter Games; beats Cecilia College of Great Britain by 6.4 points

  • Feb 16 IV Winter Olympic Games close in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany
  • Feb 16 Spanish Frente Popular (People's Front) wins elections
  • Feb 17 -58°F (-50°C), McIntosh, South Dakota (state record)
  • Feb 17 S. N. Behrman's play "End of Summer" premieres in NYC
  • Feb 17 The world's first superhero, The Phantom, a cartoon strip by Lee Falk, makes his first appearance in comics
  • Feb 18 NHL record 32 points scored, NY Americans (28) & Mont Maroons (24)

Election of Interest

Feb 19 Manuel Azaña becomes Prime Minister of Spain for the second time

  • Feb 22 Construction on Ypenburg Neth airport begins
  • Feb 22 Sonja Henie of Norway follows up her Winter Olympics victory with an incredible 10th consecutive women’s World Championship figure skating gold medal in Paris, France
  • Feb 23 1st rocket air mail flight, Greenwood Lake, NY

Historic Event

Feb 26 Adolf Hitler introduces Ferdinand Porsche's "Volkswagen"

  • Feb 26 Military coup in Japan
  • Feb 27 Dutch swimmer Willy den Ouden sets new women's world 100m freestyle record (1:04.6) in Amsterdam; lasts 22 years until broken in 1956 by Dawn Fraser of Australia
  • Feb 28 Karl Schäfer of Austria follows up his Winter Olympics victory with his 7th consecutive men’s figure skating World Championship title in Paris, France
  • Feb 28 Olympic champions Ernst Baier and Maxi Herber of Germany win their 4th consecutive pairs figure skating gold medal at the World Championships in Paris, France

Historic Event

Feb 29 US President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs 2nd Neutrality Act


Famous Birthdays

  • Feb 1 Azie Taylor Morton, 35th Treasurer of the United States (d. 2003)
  • Feb 1 G H Blake, Principal (Collingwood College, Durham U)
  • Feb 2 Duane Jones, American actor (Night of the Living Dead), and theater director, born in New York City (d. 1988)
  • Feb 3 Bob Simpson, Australian cricket batsman, captain and coach (62 Tests @ 46.81, 10 x 100s; Wisden Cricketer of the Year 1965; NSW CA), born in Sydney, Australia
  • Feb 3 Jim Marshall, American photographer (The Beatles final concert in San Francisco; Woodstock Festival), born in Chicago, Illinois (d. 2010)
  • Feb 4 Daan van Golden, Dutch sculptor
  • Feb 4 David Brenner, American stand-up comedian and TV talk show host (Nightlife) known as a pioneer of observational comedy, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 2014)
  • Feb 4 Gary Conway, actor (Burke's Law, Land of the Giants), born in Boston, Massachusetts
  • Feb 5 Lee Thomas, American baseball utility (MLB All Star 1962, 62²; LA Angels, Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs) and executive (GM Philadelphia Phillies 1988-93), born in Peoria, Illinois (d. 2022)
  • Feb 6 J. Howard Marshall III, American businessman, born in San Francisco, California
  • Feb 8 Larry Verne, American singer (Mr. Custer), born in Minneapolis, Minnesota (d. 2013)
  • Feb 8 Manohar Hardikar, Indian cricketer (batted in 2 Tests India v WI 1958-59), born in Baroda, Gujarat (d. 1995)
  • Feb 9 "Stompin' Tom" Connors, Canadian country and folk singer-songwriter ("The Hockey Song"), born in St. John, New Brunswick, (d. 2013)
  • Feb 9 Clive Swift, actor (Frenzy, Passage to India), born in Liverpool, England
  • Feb 9 Johnny Heartsman [Eastman], American R&B, soul and electric blues session musician and songwriter, born in Houston, Texas (d. 1996)
  • Feb 10 Olwyn Bowey, British artist, born in Stockton-on-Tees, Durham
  • Feb 10 Sylvia Williams, museum director/curator

Burt Reynolds

Feb 11 Burt Reynolds, American actor (Deliverance, Evening Shade, Strip Tease, Cannonball), born in Lansing, Michigan (d. 2018)

  • Feb 12 Arnost Parsch, Czech composer, born in Bučovice, Czech Republic (d. 2013)
  • Feb 12 Fang Lizhi, Chinese astrophysicist/dissident (Tiananmen Square, 1989), born in Beijing, China (d. 2012)
  • Feb 12 Joe Don Baker, American actor (Eischied, Walking Tall, Fletch), born in Groesback, Texas
  • Feb 12 Paul Shenar, American actor (Carrington-Roots), born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Feb 13 Frank Connor, Scottish soccer manager (Cowdenbeath FC, Berwick Rangers FC, Celtic FC, Raith Rovers FC), born in Airdrie, Scotland (d. 2022)
  • Feb 13 John Harris, British(?) cricket player
  • Feb 13 Leamon King, Tulare California, 4X100m relayer (Olympic gold 1956)
  • Feb 13 Pavol Molnár, Slovak soccer forward (20 caps Czechoslovakia; SK Slovan Bratislava, FK Inter Bratislava), born in Bratislava, Slovakia (d. 2021)
  • Feb 14 Andrew Prine, American actor (V, W.E.B., Wide Country), born in Jennings, Florida
  • Feb 14 Charlie Burns, Canadian ice hockey forward (world champion Whitby Dunlops 1958) and coach (Minnesota North Stars), born in Detroit, Michigan (d. 2021)
  • Feb 14 Fanne Foxe [Annabella Battistella], Argentine-American exotic dancer famous for her involvement in a sex scandal with Wilbur Mills, born in Nueve de Julio, Argentina
  • Feb 14 Takuo Aoyagi, Japanese engineer who invented the pulse oximeter, born in Niigata Prefecture, Japan (d. 2020)

Carl Icahn

Feb 16 Carl Icahn, American businessman (Icahn Enterprises), born in NYC, New York

  • Feb 16 Jill Kinmont, American skier
  • Feb 16 Murray Weideman, Australian rules football CHF (Collingwood VFL premiers 1953, 58 [c]; B&F 1957, 61, 62; Victoria 1956-60) and coach (Collingwood 1975-76), born in Melbourne, Australia (d. 2021)
  • Feb 16 William "Buddy" Deppenschmidt, American jazz drummer (Charlie Byrd Trio - "Jazz Samba"), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 2021) [1]
  • Feb 17 Barry Jarman, Australian cricket wicket-keeper (19 Tests; 54 dismissals), born in Adelaide, South Australia (d. 2020)

Jim Brown

Feb 17 Jim Brown, American College/Pro Football HOF running back (Syracuse Uni; NFL MVP 1957, 58, 65; NFL Rookie of the Year 1957; 8 × First-team All-Pro; 9 × Pro Bowl; Cleveland Browns), born in St. Simons, Georgia

  • Feb 17 John Leyton, British actor and singer ("Johnny Remember Me"), born in Frinton-on-Sea, England
  • Feb 17 Peter Walker, English cricket batsman (3 Tests; Glamorgan CCC), born in Bristol, England (d. 2020)
  • Feb 18 Jean M. Auel, Finnish-American writer (Earth's Children series), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • Feb 18 Jozef Vengloš, Slovak soccer manager (Australia, Czechoslovakia, Malaysia, Fenerbahçe, Aston Villa, Celtic, Slovakia), born in Ružomberok, Slovakia (d. 2021)
  • Feb 19 Bob Engemann, American singer (The Lettermen), born in Highland Park, Michigan (d. 2013)
  • Feb 19 Ione Mylonas Shear, American archeologist (Bronze Age Greece), born in Champaign, Illinois (d. 2005)
  • Feb 19 Marin Sorescu, Romanian poet, playwright and artist (Iona, House under surveillance), born in Bulzești, Dolj County (d. 1996)
  • Feb 20 Larry Hovis, American actor (Hogan's Heroes - "Sgt. Carter"; Gomer Pyle), born in Wapito, Washington (d. 2003)
  • Feb 20 Marj Dusay [Marjorie Mahoney], American actress (Guiding Light - "Alexandra"; Bret Maverick - "Kate"), born in Russell, Kansas (d. 2020)
  • Feb 20 Mirjana Lewis (née Vrbanic), Croat-American classical pianist and harpsichord player, born in Zagreb, Kingdom of Yugoslavia (now Croatia) (d. 2010)
  • Feb 20 Tony Brown, Australian rugby league five-eighth (10 Tests; Newtown RLFC, Penrith RLFC), born in Sydney, Australia (d. 2022)
  • Feb 21 Barbara Jordan, American politician (Rep-D-Tx, 1972-78), born in Houston, Texas
  • Feb 22 Ernie K-Doe [Ernest Kador Jr.], African-American R&B singer (Mother-in-Law"), born in New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Feb 22 J. Michael Bishop, American immunologist & microbiologist (Nobel Prize 1989), born in York, Pennsylvania
  • Feb 24 Jess Conrad [Gerald James], British stage and screen actor and pop singer, born in Brixton, South London, England
  • Feb 25 Norman Scribner, American organist, conductor, choral director (St. Alban's, 1960-2007; Choral Arts Society of Washington, 1965-2012), and composer (Song for St. Cecilia), born in Washington, DC (d. 2015)
  • Feb 26 Cyrus Faryar, Iranian-American folk musician, songwriter, and record producer (Modern Folk Quartet), born in Tehran, Persia
  • Feb 26 José Yudica, Argentine soccer forward (4 caps; Newell's Old Boys, Boca Juniors) and manager (Newell's Old Boys, Quilmes), born in Rosario, Argentina (d. 2021)
  • Feb 26 Manmohan Desai, Indian filmmaker (Amar Akbar Anthony, Suhaag), born in Bombay, British India (d. 1994)
  • Feb 27 Chuck Glaser, American country singer (Tompall & the Glaser Brothers), born in Spalding, Nebraska (d. 2019)
  • Feb 27 Roger M. Mahoney, American cardinal (Archbishop of Los Angeles, 1985–2011), born in Hollywood, California
  • Feb 27 Ron Barassi, Australian rules footballer, born in Castlemaine, Australia
  • Feb 27 Virginia Maskell, English actress (Suspect, Doctor in Love, Man Upstairs), born in Shepherd's Bush, London (d. 1968)
  • Feb 29 Alex Rocco, American actor (The Godfather, The Famous Teddy Z), born in Cambridge, Massachusetts (d. 2015)
  • Feb 29 Don Sutherin, American Canadian Football HOF defensive back/placekicker (Grey Cup 1963, 65, 68, 69; Hamilton Tiger-Cats, Ottawa Rough Riders), born in Empire, Ohio (d. 2022)

Henri Richard

Feb 29 Henri Richard, Canadian Hockey Hall of Fame center (record 11 Stanley Cups; 9 x NHL All Star; Montreal Canadiens), born in Montreal, Quebec (d. 2020)

  • Feb 29 Jack R Lousma, American USMC Colonel, naval aviator, and NASA astronaut (Skylab 3; STS-3), born in Grand Rapids Michigan

Famous Weddings

Emilio G. Segrè

Feb 2 Physicist Emilio G. Segrè (31) weds jewish woman Elfriede Spiro at the Great Synagogue of Rome in Italy

Famous Deaths

  • Feb 1 Georgios Kondylis, Prime Minister of Greece & general of the Greek army, dies at 56
  • Feb 2 Owen Seaman, British poet and editor (Punch), dies at 74
  • Feb 3 Sophie of Schönburg-Waldenburg, consort of William of Wied, Prince of Albania (b.1885)
  • Feb 4 Wilhelm Gustloff, German leader of the Swiss Nazi party (b. 1895)

Charles Curtis

Feb 8 Charles Curtis, American Republican Senator (Kansas: 1907-13, 1915-29) and 31st US Vice President (1929-33) who was the first Native American to become a Senator and Vice President, dies of a heart attack at 76

  • Feb 9 Jacques Bainville, French historian/essayist/journalist, dies at 57
  • Feb 16 James Harvey Robinson, American historian (Ordeal of Civilization), dies at 72
  • Feb 16 Tommy Ward, South African cricket wicket-keeper (23 Tests), electrocuted at 48
  • Feb 17 Erich Schaeder, German theologist (Theozentrische), dies at 74
  • Feb 19 Charles Harding Firth, British historian (b. 1857)
  • Feb 20 Max Schreck, German actor (Nosferatu - "Count Orlok"), dies of a heart attack at 56
  • Feb 22 Johan Skjoldborg, Danish writer (Dynaes Digte), dies at 74
  • Feb 22 John Hope, American educator (President of Atlanta Baptist/Morehouse College,1906-36 and Atlanta University, 1929-36), dies at 67

Ivan Pavlov

Feb 27 Ivan Pavlov, Russian physiologist and pioneer in psychology (Nobel Prize 1904), dies at 86

  • Feb 27 Joshua W. Alexander, U.S. Secretary of Commerce under Woodrow Wilson (b. 1852)
  • Feb 28 Charles Nicolle, French bacteriologist (Nobel Prize in Medicine 1928), dies at 69
  • Feb 28 Pedro Munoz Seca, La Caraba/La oca, dies at 55