On This Day

Events in History on February 15

  • 399 BC Philosopher Socrates is sentenced to death by the city of Athens for corrupting the minds of the youth of the city and for impiety
  • 590 Khosrau II, the last great Sasanian king is crowned King of Persia
  • 732 Zen teacher Ho-tse Shen-hui disputes founder of Northern Ch'an line
  • 1145 Bernardo elected Pope Eugene III
  • 1313 Peace of Angleur, Liège signed
  • 1386 Duke Philip the Stout forms Council of Flanders
  • 1539 Emperor Charles receives Cardinal Pole in Toledo
  • 1552 Dutch coast hit by heavy storm
  • 1563 Russian troops occupy Polotsk Lithuania
  • 1637 Ferdinand III succeeds Ferdinand II as Holy Roman Emperor

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1677 King Charles II reports anti-French covenant with Netherlands

King of England Charles II
King of England
Charles II
  • 1745 Colley Cibbers "Papal Tyranny" premieres in London
  • 1763 Austria, Prussia & Saxony sign the Treaty of Hubertusburg, marking the end of the French and Indian War and of the Seven Years War
  • 1764 St. Louis, Missouri founded as a French trading post by Pierre Laclède
  • 1768 1st mustard manufactured in America advertised, Philadelphia
  • 1775 Angelo Braschi chosen as Pope Pius VI

  • 1799 1st US printed ballots authorized, Pennsylvania
  • 1804 New Jersey becomes last northern state to abolish slavery
  • 1805 Harmony Society is officially formed.

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1830 Beginning of the famous debate between French naturalists Georges Cuvier and Étienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire on animal structure

Naturalist and Zoologist Georges Cuvier
Naturalist and Zoologist
Georges Cuvier
  • 1842 1st adhesive postage stamps in US (private delivery company), NYC
  • 1845 William Parsons, Earl of Rosse, 1st uses 72 inch (183 cm) reflector
  • 1848 Sarah Roberts barred from white school in Boston
  • 1851 Black abolitionists invade Boston courtroom rescuing a fugitive slave
  • 1852 Great Ormond St Hospital for Sick Children, London, admits 1st patient
  • 1861 Ft Point completed & garrisoned (but has never fired cannon in anger)
  • 1862 Grant's major assault on Ft Donelson, Tennessee
  • 1864 Fire in Rotterdam damages Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen
  • 1867 Johann Strauss' "Blue Danube" waltz premieres in Vienna

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1869 Charges of Treason against Jefferson Davis are dropped

President of the Confederate States of America Jefferson Davis
President of the Confederate States of America
Jefferson Davis
  • 1870 Ground broken for Northern Pacific Railway near Duluth, Minnesota
  • 1876 Historic Elm at Boston blown down
  • 1879 US Congress authorizes women lawyers to practise before Supreme Court
  • 1882 SS Dunedin leaves New Zealand for Britain with the first cargo of frozen meat.
  • 1891 AIK is founded at Biblioteksgatan 8 in Stockholm by Isidor Behrens.
  • 1895 23 cm (9 inches) of snow falls on New Orleans
  • 1898 USS Maine sinks in Havana harbor, cause unknown, 258 sailors die

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1900 Boer War: Siege of Kimberley broken by British troops under Lieutenant-General John French after a 124 day siege. Kimberley defense led by Cecil Rhodes.

British Businessman and Imperialist Politician Cecil Rhodes
British Businessman and Imperialist Politician
Cecil Rhodes
  • 1902 Berlin U-Bahn (Underground railway) opened
  • 1903 1st Teddy Bear introduced in America, made by Morris & Rose Michtom
  • 1906 British Labour Party founded

  • 1912 Schooner 'Fram' reaches latitude 78° 41' S, farthest south ever by ship
  • 1913 1st avant-garde art show in America opens in NYC
  • 1917 San Francisco Public Library (Main Branch at Civic center) dedicated
  • 1918 US army troop ship torpedoed & sunk by Germany off Ireland
  • 1918 Estonia, Latvia & Lithuania adopt Gregorian calendar
  • 1919 American Legion organizes in Paris

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1922 Marconi begins regular broadcasting transmissions from Essex

Inventor and Nobel Laureate Guglielmo Marconi
Inventor and Nobel Laureate
Guglielmo Marconi
  • 1924 A deputation for the South African Indian Congress (SAIC) meets with the Minister of the Interior, Sir Patrick Duncan, and presents him with a memorandum setting out their objections concerning the Class Areas Bill
  • 1926 Brooks Atkinson Theater opens at 256 W 47th St NYC
  • 1926 Contract air mail service begins in US
  • 1932 George Burns & Gracie Allen debut as regulars on the "Guy Lombardo Show"
  • 1932 John Van Druten's "There's Always Juliet" premieres in NYC
  • 1933 Karl Radek praises invincible force of German communist party

MurderAssassination Attempt

1933 President-elect Franklin D. Roosevelt survives assassination attempt but Chicago Mayor Anton Cermak is mortally wounded, he would die on March 29

32nd US President Franklin D. Roosevelt
32nd US President
Franklin D. Roosevelt
  • 1933 Social-democratic newspaper "Vorwarts" banned again in Berlin
  • 1936 -60°F (-51°C), Parshall, North Dakota (state record)

Historic CommunicationVolkswagen Beetle

1936 Adolf Hitler announces construction of the Volkswagen Beetle (the People's Car, aka the Käfer/Beetle)
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The last edition of an 'old style' VW Beetle
The last edition of an 'old style' VW Beetle
  • 1939 German battleship Bismarck was launched
  • 1942 German U-boat shells Antillian oil refinery
  • 1942 Japanese troops march into Palembang, South Sumatra
  • 1942 World War II: British ruled Singapore surrenders to the Japanese
  • 1943 Women's camp Tamtui on Ambon (Moluccas) hit by allied air raid

Historic PublicationWe Can Do It!

1943 Wartime propaganda poster "We Can Do It!" produced by J. Howard Miller and posted on the walls of Westinghouse Electric and Manufacturing Company's plants in the Midwest
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American wartime propaganda poster produced by J. Howard Miller in 1943 for Westinghouse Electric
American wartime propaganda poster produced by J. Howard Miller in 1943 for Westinghouse Electric
  • 1944 891 British bombers attack Berlin in the largest raid by the RAF against the city
  • 1944 Allies begin attack on Axis held Monte Cassino monastery, Italy

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1948 Mao Zedong's army occupies Yenan

Chinese Revolutionary and Chairman of the Communist Party Mao Zedong
Chinese Revolutionary and Chairman of the Communist Party
Mao Zedong
  • 1950 WM Inge's "Come Back, Little Sheba" premieres in NYC

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1952 King George VI is buried in St. George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, England

King of Great Britain George VI
King of Great Britain
George VI
  • 1954 1st Bevatron particle accelerator in operation at Berkeley, California
  • 1955 1st pilot plant to produce man-made diamonds announced
  • 1956 Urho Kekkonen appointed president of Finland
  • 1956 Pirates & KC As cancel an exhibition game in Birmingham Alabama, because of local ordinance barring black from playing against white
  • 1957 Andrei A Gromyko succeeds Dmitri Shepilov as Soviet foreign minister
  • 1958 Ice Pairs Championship at Paris won by Barbara Wagner/Rob Paul of CAN
  • 1958 Ladies' Figure Skating Championship in Paris won by Carol Heiss of USA
  • 1958 Men's Figure Skating Championship in Paris won by David Jenkins USA
  • 1958 Sjafroeddin Prawiranegara forms anti-government of Middle Sumatra
  • 1959 Antonio Segni forms Italian government
  • 1961 Entire US figure skating team is killed in an air crash outside Brussels airport in Belgium whilst flying to World Championships in Prague from NYC; 72 passengers, including 34 American skaters, coaches, officials, and other members of extended team are lost
  • 1962 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • 1963 1st US female world figure skating champ (Tenley Albright)
  • 1963 Ken Lynch records "Misery," 1st Lennon-McCartney song by someone else
  • 1965 Red Maple Leaf Flag becomes the official flag of Canada
  • 1967 1st anti-bootleg recording laws enacted
  • 1967 D66 (D'66) wins 7 seats in Dutch 2nd Chamber
  • 1967 Longest dream (REM sleep) on record, Bill Carskadon, Chicago (2:23)
  • 1968 Anaheim's Les Salvage scores 10, 3-pt baskets in ABA game vs Denver
  • 1970 Dominican DC-9 crashes into sea at Santo Domingo, kills 102
  • 1970 Nationalists disrupt UN session on Congo
  • 1971 After 1,200 years Great Britain abandons pence & shilling system for decimal currency
  • 1971 A British soldier dies 7 days after being mortally wounded in an Irish Republican Army attack in North Ireland
  • 1972 Dimitrios Papadopoulos becomes metropolitan of Imbros and Tenedos
  • 1972 President Velasco Ibarra of Ecuador deposed for 4th time
  • 1972 Sound recordings are granted U.S. federal copyright protection for the first time.
  • 1973 USSR launches Prognoz 3 to study sun (589/200,300 km)
  • 1977 Social-democrats win Danish parliamentary election

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1978 Escaped mass murderer Ted Bundy recaptured, Pensacola, Florida

Serial Killer Ted Bundy
Serial Killer
Ted Bundy
  • 1978 Zaire revises its constitution
  • 1979 Paul Shirley (21) of Australia, sucked a lifesaver for 4 hrs 40 mins
  • 1979 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • 1981 Rocket-powered ice sled attains 399 kph, Lake George, New York
  • 1982 Ocean Ranger oil-drilling platform lost off Newfoundland, 84 die
  • 1984 500,000 Iranian soldiers move into Iraq
  • 1985 STS 51-E vehicle moves to launch pad

Electoral defeatElection of Interest

1986 Ferdinand Marcos wins rigged presidential election in the Philippines

10th President of the Philippines Ferdinand Marcos
10th President of the Philippines
Ferdinand Marcos
  • 1986 Philipines National Assembly authorizes 6 more years for Ferdinand Marcos
  • 1987 Karlstad skates world record 10km (14:03,92)
  • 1987 1982 Masters champion Craig Stadler is disqualified from Andy Williams Open for kneeling on a towel to make a shot
  • 1987 Senior PGA Championship Men's Golf, PGA National GC: Chi-Chi Rodríguez wins his second and final Champions Tour major title by 1 stroke from Dale Douglass
  • 1988 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site

  • 1989 Israel attacks border strip Taba near Egypt

Soviet UnionSoviets Leave Afghanistan

1989 Soviet military occupation of Afghanistan ends
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Last Soviet troops withdraw from their war in Afghanistan
Last Soviet troops withdraw from their war in Afghanistan
  • 1991 Freighter with dynamite explodes in Phang Nga Thailand, 120 die
  • 1991 Daily market volatility as Hussein mentions withdrawal, but Bush calls his offer a "cruel hoax"
  • 1992 100th episode of "Cops" airs on Fox

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1992 Jeffrey Dahmer found sane and guilty of killing 15 boys

Serial Killer Jeffrey Dahmer
Serial Killer
Jeffrey Dahmer
  • 1993 Bombings by mafia drug lords kill 14 in Bogota, Colombia
  • 1993 Howard Stern Radio Show premieres in Rochester NY on WNVE 95.1 FM
  • 1994 US asks Aristide to adopt a peace plan from Haiti
  • 1995 Burundi premier Anatole Kanyenkiko resigns
  • 1995 Dow-Jones closes at record 3986.17
  • 1995 Population of People's Republic of China hits 1.2 billion
  • 1996 Mortar attack on the US Embassy in Athens, Greece
  • 1997 US female Figure Skating championship won by Tara Lipinski
  • 1997 US male Figure Skating championship won by Todd Eldridge

EnglandAngel of the North

1998 The Angel of the North, a large-scale steel sculpture 20 m (66 ft) tall by Antony Gormley is installed at Gateshead, northern England
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The Angel of the North sculpture by Antony Gormley in Gateshead, Tyne and Wear, England
The Angel of the North sculpture by Antony Gormley in Gateshead, Tyne and Wear, England
  • 1999 Abdullah Öcalan, leader of the PKK (Kurdistan Workers Party, widely recognized as terrorist organization), was arrested in Kenya.
  • 2000 Indian Point II nuclear power plant in New York State vents a small amount of radioactive steam when a steam generator fails
  • 2001 First draft of the complete human genome is published in the journal "Nature"
  • 2002 At the Tri-State Crematory in La Fayette, Georgia, investigators find uncremated bodies disposed of in the woods and buildings on crematorium's property. One of the worst incidents of abuse in the funeral service industry.
  • 2003 An estimated 6-11 million people around the world take to the streets to protest against war with Iraq

Event of interestEvent of Interest

2011 Libyan protests begin opposing Colonel Muammar al-Gaddafi's rule

Libyan Revolutionary and Authoritarian Leader Muammar Gaddafi
Libyan Revolutionary and Authoritarian Leader
Muammar Gaddafi

Event of interestEvent of Interest

2011 US President Barack Obama awards writer and activist Maya Angelou the Presidential Medal of Freedom

Author, Poet and Activist Maya Angelou
Author, Poet and Activist
Maya Angelou
  • 2012 United Kingdom unemployment rate reaches 17 year high of 8.4%
  • 2012 Fire at Comayagua prison, Honduras, kills 358
  • 2013 Chelyabinsk meteor breaks up over Chelyabinsk, Russia, injuring over 1,200 people, with 26 to 33 times energy of Hiroshima bomb
  • 2013 2012 DA14, an asteroid with a 50m diameter, comes within 27,700km of Earth the same day as the Chelyabinsk meteor hits Siberia
  • 2014 Tammam Salam is elected Prime Minister of Lebanon after a 10 month gridlock
  • 2017 The Indian space rocket PSLV-C37 successfully launches 104 satellites in a single flight
  • 2018 Cyril Ramaphosa is sworn in as South African President, replacing Jacob Zuma
  • 2018 First known case of transgender woman breastfeeding reported in "Transgender Health Journal" in US
  • 2018 Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn resigns in a surprise move

AgreementAgreement of Interest

2019 US President Donald Trump declares a national emergency to divert funds to build a border wall, after signing bipartisan spending agreement to avoid another government shutdown

45th US President, Businessman and TV Personality Donald Trump
45th US President, Businessman and TV Personality
Donald Trump
  • 2019 A fired employee opens fire at Henry Pratt Company in Aurora, Illinois, killing five and injuring six