What Happened in February 1942

Historical Events

  • Feb 2 LA Times urges security measures against Japanese-Americans
  • Feb 2 US auto factories switch from commercial to war production
  • Feb 3 1st Japanese air raid on Java
  • Feb 3 Baseball owners agree to permit each club up to 14 night games in 1942
  • Feb 4 Clinton Pierce becomes 1st US general wounded in action in WW II

Film Release

Feb 5 "Woman of the Year" film directed by George Stevens, starring Katherine Hepburn & Spencer Tracy opens at Radio City Music Hall, NYC

  • Feb 5 Braves get Tommy Holmes from Yanks for Buddy Hassett and Gene Moore
  • Feb 7 1st indoor 15' pole vault (Cornelius Warmerdam 15' 3/8")

Historic Event

Feb 8 Congress advises FDR that, Americans of Japanese descent should be locked up en masse so they wouldn't oppose the US war effort

  • Feb 8 Japanese armored barges cross Strait of Johore to attack Singapore (WWII)

Plane Crash

Feb 8 Nazi architect Albert Speer appointed Minister of Armaments by Adolf Hitler after death of Fritz Todt in a plane crash

  • Feb 8 Stravinsky's "Danses Concertantes" premieres in Los Angeles
  • Feb 9 Daylight Savings War Time goes into effect in US
  • Feb 9 Japanese troops land near Makassar, South Celebes
  • Feb 9 Philadelphia "Phillies" change nickname (temporarily) to "Phils"

Historic Invention

Feb 10 American chemist James Franklin Hyde is granted a patent for fused silica

  • Feb 11 "Archie" comic book debuts
  • Feb 12 German battle cruisers Scharnhorst and Gneisenau and heavy cruiser Prinz Eugen escape from Brest to Germany in a dash up the English Channel

Historic Event

Feb 13 Hitler's Operation Sealion, the invasion of England, is cancelled

  • Feb 14 Japanese parachutists land near oil center Palembang, Sumatra
  • Feb 14 Rotterdam's Maas tunnel opens
  • Feb 14 The Polish resistance movement, the Home Army, is formed and will eventually become the largest resistance movement in occupied Europe
  • Feb 14 World War II: Battle of Pasir Panjang contributes to the fall of Singapore.
  • Feb 15 German U-boat shells Antillian oil refinery
  • Feb 15 Japanese troops march into Palembang, South Sumatra
  • Feb 15 World War II: British ruled Singapore surrenders to the Japanese
  • Feb 16 Bangka Island massacre: Japanese soldiers machine-gun 22 Australian Army nurses and 60 Australian and British soldiers and crew members from two sunken ships. Only one nurse and two soldiers survive.
  • Feb 16 German submarines attack Aruba oil refinery
  • Feb 18 Japanese troop land on Bali
  • Feb 19 About 150 Japanese warplanes attack the Australian city of Darwin
  • Feb 19 Bill Longson beats Managoff & Sandor Szabo, to become wrestling champ
  • Feb 19 Dutch actors protest obligatory membership of Culture Chamber
  • Feb 19 FDR orders detention & internment of all west-coast Japanese-Americans
  • Feb 19 Japanese troops land on Timor
  • Feb 19 NY Yankees announce 5,000 uniformed soldiers admitted free at each of their upcoming home games

Music History

Feb 19 Tommy Dorsey & his orchestra record "I'll Take Tallulah"

  • Feb 20 Lt E H O'Hare single-handedly shoots down 5 Japanese heavy bombers, becomes America's first World War II flying ace
  • Feb 21 US male Figure Skating championship won by Bobby Specht

'I Shall Return'

Feb 22 World War II: President Franklin Roosevelt orders General Douglas MacArthur out of the Philippines as American defenses collapse

  • Feb 23 Japanese submarine fires on oil refinery in Ellwood, California

Battle of Los Angeles

Feb 24 The "Battle of Los Angeles" takes place, a series of anti-aircraft engagements over the city in response to a rumored but false Japanese attack. It would last until the morning of the following day.

  • Feb 24 Voice of America begins broadcasting (in German)
  • Feb 26 German battle cruiser Gneisenau deactivated by bomb
  • Feb 26 Radio Orange calls for March 1 day of prayer in Dutch Indies

Historic Event

Feb 26 Werner Heisenberg, a principal scientist in the German nuclear weapons program, delivers a lecture to Nazi officials about extracting energy from nuclear fission

  • Feb 27 1st transport of French Jews to nazi-Germany
  • Feb 27 Battle of Java Sea began: 13 US warships sunk and 2 Japanese
  • Feb 27 J S Hey discovers radio emissions from Sun
  • Feb 28 1st weapon drop on Netherlands
  • Feb 28 Japanese land in Java, last Allied bastion in Dutch East Indies
  • Feb 28 Race riot at Sojourner Truth Homes, a housing project in Detroit, Michigan

Famous Birthdays

  • Feb 1 David Sincock, Australian cricket spin bowler (3 Tests, 8 wickets; South Australia CA), born in Adelaide, South Australia
  • Feb 1 Milt Sunde, American NFL guard (Pro Bowl 1966; NFL Champion 1969; Minnesota Vikings), born in Minneapolis, Minnesota (d. 2020)
  • Feb 1 Muna Wassef, Syrian actress (The Message) and UN Goodwill ambassador, born in Damascus, Syria
  • Feb 1 Terry Jones, Welsh comedian (Monty Python), born in Colwyn Bay, Denbighshire, Wales (d. 2020)
  • Feb 2 Barry Diller, founder (Fox-TV)
  • Feb 2 Graham Nash, British-American musician and singer-songwriter (The Hollies - "Bus Stop"; Crosby, Stills & Nash - "Our House"), born in Blackpool, Lancashire
  • Feb 2 Ron Franklin, American sportscaster (ESPN 1987-2011; ESPN College Football Primetime), born in Jackson, Mississippi (d. 2022)
  • Feb 2 Satya Paul, Indian fashion designer and entrepreneur who invented the modern sari, born in Layyah, Punjab, British India (d. 2021) [1]
  • Feb 4 Johnny Gamble, rocker (Classics)
  • Feb 5 Cory Wells [Emil Lewandowski], American rock vocalist (3 Dog Night-Joy to the World), born in Buffalo, New York (d. 2015)
  • Feb 5 Roger Staubach, American College and Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback (Heisman Trophy 1963, Navy; Super Bowl 1971 [MVP], 77; Dallas Cowboys), born in Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Feb 5 Susan Hill, English playwright (Magic Apple Tree)
  • Feb 6 James Loewen, American sociologist & historian, born in Decatur, Illinois
  • Feb 6 John London, American songwriter & bassist (Michael Nesmith band), born in Brazos County, Texas
  • Feb 6 Sarah Brady, American gun-control activist, born in Kirksville, Missouri
  • Feb 7 Ton de Kok, Dutch politician (CDA)
  • Feb 8 Fritz Peterson, American baseball pitcher (NY Yankees), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • Feb 8 Robert Klein, American comedian and actor (Hooper, Deadly Rivals), born in The Bronx, New York
  • Feb 8 Terry Melcher [Terrence Jorden], American record producer and musician, Doris Day's son (The Rip Chords; The Byrds), born in NYC, New York (d. 2004)

Carole King

Feb 9 Carole King, American Grammy Award-winning songwriter, ("Up On The Roof"; "One Fine Day"; "Pleasant Valley Sunday") piano player, and singer (Tapestry - "You've Got A Friend"; "So Far Away"; "You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Woman"), born in Manhattan, New York

  • Feb 9 Charlie Morrow, American avant-garde composer, and sound artist, born in Newark, New Jersey
  • Feb 9 Miloš Štědroň, Czech composer born in Brno, Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia
  • Feb 9 Peder Lunde Jr, Norwegian yachtsman (Olympic gold 1960), born in Oslo, Norway
  • Feb 10 Alfred Gager, Austrian soccer midfielder (6 caps; Austria Wien, FC Wacker Wien), born in Vienna, Austria (d. 2022)
  • Feb 10 Howard Mudd, American football OL (Pro Bowl 1966–68; All-Pro 1967-68; SF 49ers, Chicago Bears) and coach (Super Bowl 2006; OL Indianapolis Colts), born in Midland, Michigan (d. 2020)
  • Feb 10 Michael Bishop, British CEO (British Midland Airways), born in Bowdon, Cheshire
  • Feb 11 Archie Andrews, comic book character (Archie)
  • Feb 11 Leon Haywood, American funk and soul singer, and keyboardist ("It's Got To Be Mellow"; "I Want'a Do Something Freaky To You"), born in Houston, Texas (d. 2016)
  • Feb 11 Otis Clay, American gospel, soul, and R&B-singer ("That's How It Is (When You're In Love)"), born in Waxhaw, Mississippi (d. 2006)
  • Feb 11 Tony Colton [Chalk], British singer-songwriter, and record producer (Head, Hands, and Feet), born in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, England (d. 2020)
  • Feb 12 Chananjit Vohra, Kenyan/British hotel magnate/multi-millionaire
  • Feb 12 Ehud Barak, Prime Minister of Israel
  • Feb 12 Lionel Grigson, British jazz pianist, and horn player, born in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire (d. 1994)
  • Feb 12 Pat Dobson, American baseball player (d. 2006)
  • Feb 12 Rick Frank, American drummer (Elephant's Memory)
  • Feb 13 Carol Lynley, American actress (Night Stalker, Fantasy Island, Immortal), born in NYC, New York
  • Feb 13 Donald E. Williams, American US naval officer & NASA astronaut (STS 51D, STS 34), born in Lafayette, Indiana (d. 2016)
  • Feb 13 Peter Tork [Thorkelson], American musician and actor (The Monkees), born in Washington, D.C. (d. 2019)
  • Feb 14 Andrew Robinson, American actor
  • Feb 14 Margaret Wright, chief commissioner (Guide Association)
  • Feb 14 Michael Bloomberg, American philanthropist, politician, and CEO of Bloomberg L.P., born in Boston, Massachusetts
  • Feb 14 Ricardo Rodríguez, Mexican auto racer (youngest F1 driver ever to race for Ferrari), born in Mexico City, Mexico (d. 1962)
  • Feb 15 Glyn Johns, British recording engineer and producer (Eagles; The Who; Eric Clapton), born in Epsom, Surrey, England
  • Feb 16 Bob Hammond AM, Australian rules key defender (AFL Hall of Fame; North Adelaide; SA) and coach (Sydney Swans 1984), born in Perth, Australia (d. 2020)
  • Feb 16 Gabriel Brnčić, Chilean composer, and pedagogue, born in Santiago, Chile

Kim Jong-il

Feb 16 Kim Jong-il, Supreme Leader of North Korea (1994-2011), born in Vyatskoye, Soviet Union [disputed birthplace and birth date, 1941] (d. 2011)

  • Feb 17 Huey P. Newton, African-American activist, revolutionary and co-founder of the Black Panther Party, born in Monroe, Louisiana (d. 1989)
  • Feb 18 Roy Prosser, Australian rugby union prop (25 caps; Northern Suburbs), born in Sydney, Australia (d. 2008)
  • Feb 19 Ken Kramer [Kenneth Bentley Kramer], former American Republican member of the House of Representatives, born in Chicago, Illinois
  • Feb 20 Charlie Gillett, British pop-rock and world music radio presenter and writer (The Sound of the City), born in Morecambe, Lancashire, England (d. 2010)
  • Feb 20 Claude Miller, director (Garde a Vue, Little Thief, Wild Child), (d. 2012)
  • Feb 20 David O'Dowd, Chief Constable (Northamptonshire)

Mitch McConnell

Feb 20 Mitch McConnell, American politician, (Senator-R-KY, 1985-, and Senate Majority Leader 2015- ), born in Sheffield, Alabama

Phil Esposito

Feb 20 Phil Esposito, Canadian Hockey Hall of Fame center, coach, GM, broadcaster (Black Hawks, Bruins, Rangers), born in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario

  • Feb 21 Margarethe Von Trotta, German actress and director (Marianne), born in Berlin, Germany
  • Feb 21 Peter Leonard, Australian journalist and newsreader, born in Yass, New South Wales (d. 2008)
  • Feb 22 Christine Keeler, British model & showgirl (Profumo affair), born in Uxbridge, England (d. 2017)
  • Feb 23 Beau Boulter, American politician and lobbyist (Rep-R-TX, 1985-89), born in El Paso, Texas
  • Feb 23 John Lewis, Head Master (Eton College)
  • Feb 23 Joop van den Ende, Dutch theatrical producer, born in Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Feb 24 Colin Bond, Australian racing driver
  • Feb 24 David K Williamson, Australian screenplay/playwright (Removalists)
  • Feb 24 Joe Lieberman, (Sen-D Connecticut)
  • Feb 24 Paul Jones, English rock singer (Manfred Mann - "Do Wah Diddy Diddy") and radio presenter (The Blues Show), born in Portsmouth, England
  • Feb 24 Stuart Henry, British disc jockey
  • Feb 25 Carlena Williams, American session and touring vocalist (Ike & Tina Turner Revue; Humble Pie; Pink Floyd; The Carpenters; Donna Summer), born in North Carolina (d. 2013)
  • Feb 26 Adriaan van Dis, Dutch author (Nathan Sid, In Africa), born in Bergen aan Zee, Netherlands
  • Feb 26 Yōsuke Yamashita, Japanese jazz pianist, and composer of jazz, film scores, and classical works, born in Tokyo, Japan
  • Feb 27 Charlayne Hunter-Gault, American journalist & foreign correspondent (McNeil-Lehrer), born in Due West, South Carolina
  • Feb 27 Michel Forget, French Canadian actor, born in Montreal, Quebec
  • Feb 27 Robert H. Grubbs, American chemist & Nobel Prize laureate, born in Marshall County, Kentucky
  • Feb 28 Bob Collins [Harold Lee], American radio broadcaster (WGN- 720AM, Chicago, 1986-2000), born in Lakeland, Florida (d. 2000)
  • Feb 28 Brian Jones, British blues and rock guitarist, organist and sitar player (Rolling Stones, 1962-69), born in Gloucestershire, England (d. 1969)
  • Feb 28 Dino Zoff, Italian footballer goalkeeper, 1961-83, and manager, 1988-2005, born in Mariano del Friuli, Italy
  • Feb 28 Frank Bonner [Boers], American actor (WKRP in Cincinnati - "Herb Tarlek"; The Hoax; Just The Ten Of Us), and television director, born in Little Rock, Arkansas (d. 2021)

Famous Deaths

  • Feb 2 Daniil Kharms [Yuvatchov], Russian surrealist and absurdist writer, poet, and playwright, dies of starvation during the siege of Leningrad at 36
  • Feb 6 Wobbe de Vries, Dutch linguist, dies at 78
  • Feb 7 Dorando di Desiderio Pietri, marathoner (Olympic gold 1908), dies at 56
  • Feb 7 Ivan Bilibin, Russian illustrator, dies at 65
  • Feb 8 Fritz Todt, German construction engineer, Reich Minister for Armaments and Munitions Reichs minister and Head of the Organization Todt, dies in a plane crash at 50
  • Feb 9 Lauri Kristian Relander, 2nd President of Finland (1925-31), dies at 58
  • Feb 12 Grant Wood, American painter (American Gothic), dies at 50
  • Feb 13 Epitácio Pessoa, 11th President of Brazil (Minas Gerais Republican: 1919-22), dies at 76
  • Feb 14 Adnan Bin Saidi, Officer of the Malay Regiment killed in the defense of Singapore (b. 1915)
  • Feb 15 Guido Adler, Bohemian-Austrian musicologist (Still in the Music), dies at 91
  • Feb 15 Stanislav Binički, Serbian composer, dies at 69
  • Feb 18 Albert Payson Terhune, American author (b. 1872)
  • Feb 19 Frank Abbandando, American gangster (Murder, Inc.), executed for murder at 31
  • Feb 20 Guido Gasperini, Italian composer, dies at 76
  • Feb 23 Stefan Zweig, Austrian poet, essayist and dramatist (Beware of Pity), dies at 60
  • Feb 24 Anton Drexler, German politician and founder of the German Worker's Party, dies at 57
  • Feb 25 Leo Ascher, Austrian-American operetta composer (Hoheit tanzt Walzer (Her Highness Dances the Waltz); Der Soldat der Marie (Marie's Soldier)), dies at 61
  • Feb 27 Karel Doorman, Dutch rear-admiral (Java Sea), KIA at 52
  • Feb 27 Martha McChesney Berry, American educator who founded Berry School for Children, dies at 75