On This Day

Events in History on February 12

  • 1049 Bruno count of Egesheim & Dagsburg crowned Pope Leo IX
  • 1111 King Henry V, King of Germany and Italy, arrives in Rome for his coronation as Holy Roman Emperor, but Pope Paschal II refuses to crown him until April owing to the Investiture Controversy
  • 1130 Pope Innocent II elected
  • 1502 Muslims in Granada forced to convert to Catholicism

DiscoveryVoyage of Discovery

1502 Vasco da Gama sets sail from Lisbon, Portugal on his second voyage to India

Explorer Vasco da Gama
Explorer
Vasco da Gama
  • 1528 Treaty of Dordrecht between emperor & ecclesiastical power
  • 1541 Santiago, Chile founded (or Feb 24)
  • 1554 Queen of England for nine days, Lady Jane Grey is executed for treason
  • 1577 Spanish land guardian Don Juan of Habsburg signs "Eternal Edict"
  • 1624 English "Happy Parliament commenced
  • 1700 The Great Northern War begins in Northern Europe between Denmark–Norway, Saxony and Russia and the Swedish Empire.
  • 1719 The Onderlinge van 1719 u.a., the oldest existing life insurance company in the Netherlands is founded
  • 1733 Georgia founded by James Oglethorpe, at site of Savannah
  • 1762 British fleet occupies Martinique
  • 1763 John Casteret appointed British minister of foreign affairs

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1771 Gustav III becomes the King of Sweden after the death of predecessor Adolf Frederick

King of Sweden Gustav III
King of Sweden
Gustav III

  • 1772 Yves de Kerguelen of France discovers Kerguelen Archipelago, India
  • 1793 1st US fugitive slave law passed; requires return of escaped slaves
  • 1797 Haydn's song "Gott erhalte Franz den Kaiser" premieres in Vienna
  • 1818 Chile gains independence from Spain
  • 1821 Mercantile Library of City of NY opens
  • 1825 Creek Indian treaty signed. Tribal chiefs agree to turn over all their land in Georgia to the government & migrate west by Sept 1, 1826
  • 1832 Ecuador annexes Galapagos Islands
  • 1839 Aroostoock (or "Pork & Beans) War: Boundary dispute between Maine & New Brunswick
  • 1840 Housatonic Railroad opens
  • 1848 Ballet "Faust" premieres in Milan
  • 1850 Original Washington's Farewell Address manuscript sells for $2,300
  • 1855 Michigan State University established
  • 1861 State troops seize US munitions in Napoleon, Arkansas, during the US Civil War
  • 1865 Henry Highland Garnet becomes the 1st African American minister to preach to the US House of Representatives, he talks about the end of slavery
  • 1870 Official proclamation sets April 15 as last day of grace for US silver coins to circulate in Canada
  • 1870 Utah becomes the second territory in the United States to pass a law allowing women the vote, after Wyoming in 1869
  • 1873 US Congress passes the Coinage Act of 1873, abolishing bimetallism and placing the country on the gold standard
  • 1877 1st news dispatch by telephone, between Boston & Salem, Massachusetts
  • 1877 US railroad builders strike against wage reduction
  • 1879 1st artificial ice rink in North America (Madison Square Garden, NYC)

  • 1879 News about slaughtering of Isandlwana reaches London
  • 1880 US National Croquet League organizes (Philadelphia)
  • 1882 Social-Democratic Union forms in Amsterdam
  • 1885 Carl Peters founds German East-Africa Society
  • 1886 2nd British government of Salisbury forms
  • 1889 Henrik Ibsen's "Fruen fra havet" (The Lady from the Sea) premieres in Oslo
  • 1894 Anarchist Émile Henry hurls a bomb into Paris's Cafe Terminus, killing one and wounding 20.
  • 1899 -47°F (-44°C), Camp Clarke, Nebraska (state record)
  • 1901 Dutch Penitentiary children's law proclaimed
  • 1908 Anna Jeanes bequeaths $1,000,000 to Swarthmore to become all female

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1909 National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) forms

Nurse and Social Activist Lillian Wald
Nurse and Social Activist
Lillian Wald
  • 1909 Netherlands' SDAP suspends Marxist Tribune group (Gorter & Wijnkoop)
  • 1912 China adopts Gregorian calendar
  • 1912 The last Qing Emperor of China, Puyi abdicates after losing the support of the Chinese people and thus the mandate of heaven

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1914 Dedication ceremony for the about to be constructed Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.

Architect Henry Bacon
Architect
Henry Bacon

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1915 Adolf Hitler receives the relatively common Iron Cross second class for bravery in World War I

Dictator of Nazi Germany Adolf Hitler
Dictator of Nazi Germany
Adolf Hitler
  • 1915 World War I: Kaiser Wilhelm approves the strategic bombing of London's docks
  • 1917 1st edition of Joseph Patterson and Sidney Smith's strip "The Gumps"
  • 1920 -Apr 26] 14,000 Rotterdam/Amsterdam harbor workers strike
  • 1920 NL votes 6-2 for 1 commissioner AL votes 6-2 to keep group commission
  • 1921 Soviet troops invade Georgia

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1921 Winston Churchill becomes British Minister of Colonies

Soldier, Author and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill
Soldier, Author and British Prime Minister
Winston Churchill
  • 1924 George Kaufman's "Beggar on Horseback" premieres in NYC
  • 1925 1st federal arbitration law approved by Congress
  • 1925 E Thieffry departs with Handley Page for the Belgian Congo
  • 1925 Estonia bans communist Party
  • 1927 British expeditionary army lands in Shanghai
  • 1929 Karst Leemburg wins Dutch 11 cities skate (11:30)
  • 1931 Vatican Radio begins broadcasting with the callsign HVJ
  • 1932 Communist Party of Holland forms Unemployed Combat Committees
  • 1933 German vice-chancellor von Papen demands Catholic aid for Nazis
  • 1934 Export-Import Bank incorporates
  • 1934 France hit by a general strike against fascists & royalists
  • 1934 The four-day February Uprising, sometimes called the Austrian Civil War, begins.
  • 1935 Great airship, USS Macon, crashes into Pacific Ocean

CommunicationHistoric Communication

1935 First secret demonstration of radio signals detecting aircraft by Robert Watson-Watt at Daventry, England

Physicist and Radar Pioneer Robert Watson-Watt
Physicist and Radar Pioneer
Robert Watson-Watt
  • 1938 Austrian chancellor Kurt Schuschnigg visits Adolf Hitler in Berchtesgaden
  • 1938 German troops entered Austria
  • 1938 The first 'Kindertransport' carrying Jewish refugee children from Nazi Germany arrives in Britain
  • 1938 3rd British Empire Games close in Sydney, Australia
  • 1941 Jewish Council for Amsterdam forms under Ascher and Cohen
  • 1941 Occupation Police arrest "Jewish Foursome"
  • 1942 German battle cruisers Scharnhorst and Gneisenau and heavy cruiser Prinz Eugen escape from Brest to Germany in a dash up the English Channel

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1943 General Eisenhower departs Algiers for Tebessa

34th US President & WWII General Dwight D. Eisenhower
34th US President & WWII General
Dwight D. Eisenhower
  • 1944 Wendell Wilkie (R) enters presidential race
  • 1945 SF selected for site of UN Conference
  • 1947 Daytime fireball & meteorite fall seen in eastern Siberia
  • 1947 Record 100.5-kg sailfish caught, C W Stewart, Galapagos Islands

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1947 French fashion designer Christian Dior presents his first influential collection, named the "New Look"

Fashion Designer Christian Dior
Fashion Designer
Christian Dior
  • 1948 1st Lt Nancy Leftenant becomes 1st African American in army nursing corps

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1949 Panic in Quito, Ecuador, after "War of the Worlds" played on radio

Author H. G. Wells
Author
H. G. Wells
  • 1949 Team Canada beats Denmark 47-0 in hockey
  • 1949 Unidentified aircraft bomb Jerusalem

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1950 Albert Einstein warns against hydrogen bomb

Theoretical Physicist Albert Einstein
Theoretical Physicist
Albert Einstein
  • 1950 Senator Joe McCarthy claims to have list of 205 communist government employees

  • 1953 USSR breaks relations with Israel
  • 1954 The UK government establishes an organisation to control atomic energy in the country under The Atomic Energy Authority Bill
  • 1955 President Eisenhower sends 1st US advisors to South Vietnam
  • 1955 Soviets decides space center built in Baikonur, Kazakhstan
  • 1957 Researchers announce Borazan (harder than diamonds) been developed
  • 1958 Gen Miguel Ydegoras Fuentes elected President of Guatemala
  • 1959 The Lincoln Memorial design on the U.S. penny goes into circulation. It replaces the "sheaves of wheat" design
  • 1960 Chinese army kills 12 Indian soldiers
  • 1961 USSR launches Venera 1 toward Venus
  • 1962 Bus boycott starts in Macon, Georgia
  • 1963 Argentina asks extraditon of ex-president Peron
  • 1964 US female Figure Skating championship won by Peggy Fleming
  • 1964 US male Figure Skating championship won by Scott Allen
  • 1964 Fighting breaks out between Turks and Greeks over dispute islands in Cyprus and 16 are killed; the UN responds the following month by sending a peacekeeping force
  • 1965 Nuclear test at Pacific Ocean
  • 1967 Pirate Radio Free Harlem (NYC) begins transmitting
  • 1970 Anthony Shaffer's "Sleuth" premieres in NYC
  • 1973 1st US POWs in North Vietnam released; 116 of 456 flown to Philippines
  • 1974 Heads of state of Algeria, Egypt, Syria, and Saudi Arabia discuss oil strategy in view of the progress in Arab-Israeli disengagement
  • 1976 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • 1977 Festac '77, the Second World Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture, finishes in Lagos, Nigeria
  • 1978 US female Figure Skating championship won by Linda Fratianne
  • 1978 US male Figure Skating championship won by Charles Tickner
  • 1979 Kosmos 1076, 1st Soviet oceanographic satellite, launched
  • 1979 Bakhtiar resigns as prime minister of Iran after losing support of the military
  • 1981 Admiral Bobby R Inman, USN, becomes deputy director of CIA
  • 1981 Cape Verde amends its constitution
  • 1981 Pete Squires sets record for 1575 steps of Empire State Building, 10m
  • 1982 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • 1987 Survivors of a black man murdered by KKK members awarded $7 M damages

  • 1989 5 Pakistani Muslim rioters killed protesting "Satanic Verses" novel
  • 1989 Barbara Harris becomes 1st female bishop of a US Episcopal church
  • 1989 Gretzky sets 2 records, his 45th hat trick & 10th 40+ goal season
  • 1989 US male Figure Skating championship won by Christopher Bowman
  • 1989 Loyalist paramilitary group kill Pat Finucane, a Belfast lawyer who represented republican hunger striker Bobby Sands, while he is having dinner with family
  • 1991 Iceland recognizes Lithuania's independence
  • 1991 North & South Korea form a joint team for table tennis competition

Person of InterestThe Scream

1994 "The Scream" by Norwegian painter Edvard Munch (1893 pastel version) is stolen in Oslo
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"The Scream", pastel on cardboard by Edvard Munch
  • 1994 Inna Lassovskaya jumps world record 14.90m
  • 1995 Angela Kennedy swims woman's world record 50m butterfly

Sports record brokenWorld Record

1995 Bonnie Blair skates female world record 500m (38.69 sec)

Speed Skater Bonnie Blair
Speed Skater
Bonnie Blair
  • 1995 Dieter Baumann runs European record 3k indoor (7:37.51)
  • 1995 PRI loses and PAN wins Mexican regional elections
  • 1995 Susan Auch skates female world record 500m (38.94 sec)
  • 1998 250-car Italy pile-up due to fog, 4 die & 50 hurt

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1998 Intel unveils its 1st graphics chip i740

Semiconductor Pioneer and CEO of Intel Andrew Grove
Semiconductor Pioneer and CEO of Intel
Andrew Grove
  • 1998 US district judge T Hogan declares line-item veto law unconstitutional

USAImpeachment Trial of Bill Clinton

1999 US President Bill Clinton acquitted by the Senate in his impeachment trial
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Tickets issued to former President Gerald Ford and his wife Betty
Tickets issued to former President Gerald Ford and his wife Betty
  • 1999 Scientists warn about harmful impacts on health of genetically modified (GM) food
  • 2001 NEAR Shoemaker spacecraft touchdown in the "saddle" region of 433 Eros becoming the first spacecraft to land on an asteroid.
  • 2002 US Secretary of Energy makes the decision that Yucca Mountain is suitable to be the United States' nuclear waste repository
  • 2002 An Iran Air Tupolev Tu-154 crashes prior to landing in Khorramabad, Iran, killing 119

United <b>Nations</b>United Nations

2002 The trial of former President of Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Slobodan Milošević begins at the United Nations war crimes tribunal in The Hague. He eventually dies four years later before its conclusion.

President of Serbia and Yugoslavia Slobodan Milosevic
President of Serbia and Yugoslavia
Slobodan Milosevic
  • 2004 The city of San Francisco, California begins issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples in response to a directive from Mayor Gavin Newsom.
  • 2006 A powerful winter storm blankets the Northeastern United States dumping 1 to 2 feet of snow from Washington, D.C. up to Boston, Massachusetts. The storm dumped a record 26.9 inches of snow in New York City.
  • 2007 A gunman opens fire in a mall in Salt Lake City, killing 5 people in the Trolley Square shooting.
  • 2009 Colgan Air Flight 3407 crashes near Buffalo in the state of New York killing 50 people.
  • 2012 Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow is re-elected President of Turkmenistan with 97% of the vote
  • 2012 Zambia defeat Ivory Coast 8-7 on penalties in the Africa Cup of Nations
  • 2013 North Korea allegedly conducts its third nuclear test, saying it was a nuclear device that could be weaponized

Event of interestEvent of Interest

2014 Former New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin is found guilty on corruption charges and sentenced to ten years in prison

Mayor of New Orleans Ray Nagin
Mayor of New Orleans
Ray Nagin
  • 2014 Intel entrepreneur and co-founder of the X-PRIZE Foundation, Peter Diamandis, claims that 50% of US jobs are under threat of being mechanized within 10 years

BeatificationPapal Visit

2016 Pope Francis begins his visit to Mexico, arriving at “Benito Juarez” International Airport in Mexico City

  • 2016 Pope Francis meets Patriarch Kirill in Havana - first meeting between Catholic and Russian Orthodox church heads for nearly 1,000 years
  • 2016 Fiji becomes the first country to ratify the UN climate deal (signed Paris, December 2015)
  • 2016 Britain's Ordnance Survey, using NASA data posts map of Mars on Flickr

Event of interestEvent of Interest

2016 Student leader Kanhaiya Kumar is arrested on “anti-nationalism” charges by Indian police at an anniversary event of the death of Afzal Guru, at Delhi's Jawaharlal Nehru University

1st Prime Minister of India Jawaharlal Nehru
1st Prime Minister of India
Jawaharlal Nehru
  • 2017 Emergency spillway at Oroville Dam, California threatens to collapse, 180,00 residents ordered to evacuate
  • 2017 North Korea conducts a solid fuel ballistic missile test from Banghyon air base

Event of interestEvent of Interest

2018 Portait paintings of Barack Obama by Kehinde Wiley and Michelle Obama by Amy Sherald are unveiled at the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery

US First Lady Michelle Obama
US First Lady
Michelle Obama
44th US President Barack Obama
44th US President
Barack Obama
  • 2018 Tropical cyclone Gita strikes Tonga as a category four cyclone causing widespread damage
  • 2018 Oxfam deputy director resigns over charity's failure to deal with sexual misconduct allegations in Haiti and Chad
  • 2019 Republic of Macedonia officially changes it name to the Republic of North Macedonia to end long dispute with Greece
  • 2019 WWII aircraft carrier USS Hornet, which sank in 1942 with loss of 140 sailors re-discovery announced by Vulcan Inc. near the Solomon Islands
  • 2019 Australian government loses historic vote on own bill with amendment to allow offshore sick refugees access to healthcare, first loss in 78 years
  • 2019 24 hour general strike in Belgium forces all fights to be cancelled and schools shut

Person of InterestEl Chapo Finally Recaptured

2019 Mexican drug lord Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán found guilty of all 10 federal crimes against him in New York after 200 hours of testimony
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Mexican drug lord Joaquín
Mexican drug lord Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán in American custody after being extradited to the United States
  • 2019 Hotel fire in New Delhi, India, kills 17
  • 2019 Nasa data shows the world has got greener - 5% more leafier since early 2000s, mostly due to tree planting in China, intensive farming in India
  • 2019 US national debt tops 22 trillion for the first time according to US Treasury
  • 2019 Rare Black panthers spotted for the first time in nearly 100 years in Laikipia County, Kenya
  • 2019 Trial of 12 Catalonia independence leaders begins in Madrid