Events in History on February 20

Letter from Kublai Khan to the Japanese Emperor

1280 Japanese Imperial Court orders all temples and shrines to pray for victory in the impending second Mongol invasion

  • 1472 Orkney and Shetland are left by Norway to Scotland, due to a dowry payment
  • 1525 Swiss & German mercenaries desert Francois I's army
  • 1547 King Edward VI of England crowned following the death of his father Henry VIII
  • 1613 Gerard Reynst appointed Governor-General of Dutch East Indies
  • 1619 Trial against Johan van Oldenbarnevelt begins in The Hague for alleged crimes against the federal government
  • 1653 Defeat of Dutch fleet under Adm Van Tromp by Admiral Blake off Portsmouth
  • 1673 1st recorded wine auction held in London

Historic Event

1710 Johan Willem Friso becomes Viceroy of Groningen, Netherlands

  • 1725 10 sleeping Indians scalped by whites in New Hampshire for £100 a scalp bounty
  • 1732 Estates of Holland ratifies Treaty of Vienna
  • 1737 French minister of Finance, Chauvelin, resigns
  • 1745 Jacobite troops occupy Fort Augustus, Scotland
  • 1768 1st American chartered fire insurance company opens in Pennsylvania
  • 1792 US postal service created, postage 6-12 cents depending on distance

Historic Event

1798 French General Louis Alexandre Berthier forcibly removes Pope Pius VI from Rome during French occupation of Rome (Pope later dies a prisoner in Valence)

  • 1809 US Supreme Court rules federal government power greater than any state

Execution

1810 Andreas Hofer, Tyrolean patriot and leader of rebellion against Napoleon's forces, executed.

  • 1811 Austria declares bankruptcy
  • 1823 English Captain James Weddell reaches 74°15' S, 1520 km from South Pole
  • 1831 Polish revolutionaries defeat Russians in battle of Growchow
  • 1835 Concepcion, Chile, destroyed by earthquake; 5,000 die
  • 1839 Congress prohibits dueling in District of Columbia
  • 1846 British occupy Sikh citadel of Lahore
  • 1856 The steam packet-ship John Rutledge, en route from Liverpool to New York, hits an iceberg and sinks with the loss of 120 passengers and 19 crew; only one survivor (Thomas Nye of New Bedford)
  • 1861 Navy of the Confederate States (CSN) forms (US Civil War)
  • 1864 Civil War battle of Olustee, Florida
  • 1865 Massachusetts Institute of Technology forms 1st US collegiate architectural school
  • 1869 Tennessee Governor W C Brownlow declares martial law in Ku Klux Klan crisis
  • 1872 Hydraulic electric elevator patented by Cyrus Baldwin
  • 1872 Luther Crowell patents a machine that manufactures paper bags
  • 1872 New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art opens
  • 1872 Silas Noble & JP Cooley patents toothpick manufacturing machine
  • 1873 British Naval Officer John Moresby discovers the site of Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea and claims it for Britain
  • 1873 University of California gets its first Medical School (UC/San Francisco)
  • 1877 1st cantilever bridge in US completed, Harrodsburg, Kentucky
  • 1887 Germany, Austria-Hungary & France end Triple Alliance
  • 1890 Amsterdam Theater destroyed by fire
  • 1895 Congress authorizes a US mint at Denver, Colorodo
  • 1899 Ill Tel & Tel granted franchise for Chicago freight tunnel system
  • 1901 1st territorial legislature of Hawaii convenes
  • 1902 Heavy surf breaks over Seal Rocks & damages Sutro Baths, San Francisco
  • 1903 Nick Young remains as NL president as AG Spalding ends challenge
  • 1909 Publication of the Futurist Manifesto in the French journal "Le Figaro"
  • 1909 The Hudson Motor Car Company is founded in Detroit, Michigan by retail titan Joseph L. Hudson and other investors [1]
  • 1913 King O'Malley drives in the first survey peg to mark commencement of work on the construction of Australian capital Canberra
  • 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition (World's Fair) opens in San Francisco

Assassination Attempt

1919 French Prime Minister Georges Clémenceau injured during assassination attempt

  • 1921 Riza Khan Pahlevi seizes control of Iran

Historic Event

1922 Marc Connelly & George Kaufman's "To the Ladies" premieres in NYC

  • 1922 Vilnius, Lithuania, agrees to separate from Poland
  • 1922 WOR-AM in New York City begins radio transmissions
  • 1929 American Samoa organizes as territory of US
  • 1931 Congress allows California to build Oakland-Bay Bridge
  • 1932 Japanese troops occupy Tunhua China
  • 1933 Curom, Curacaose Broadcast System starts: Princess Juliana's speech
  • 1933 Sidney Howard's "Alien Corn" premieres in NYC
  • 1933 US House of Representatives completes congressional action to repeal Prohibition
  • 1935 Dane Caroline Mikkelson is 1st woman to land on Antarctica
  • 1937 1st automobile/airplane combination tested, Santa Monica, California

Historic Event

1938 Adolf Hitler announces his support for Japan during the Sino-Japanese War

Historic Event

1938 UK Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden resigns stating Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain has appeased Nazi Germany

  • 1939 The American pro-Nazi organization German American Bund hold a rally at Madison Square Garden and 20,000 attend
  • 1941 1st transport of Jews to concentration camps leave Plotsk Poland
  • 1941 Nazi Germany orders Polish Jews barred from using public transportation
  • 1941 Romania breaks relations with Netherlands
  • 1942 Lt E H O'Hare single-handedly shoots down 5 Japanese heavy bombers, becomes America's first World War II flying ace
  • 1943 Allied troops occupy Kasserine pass in Tunisia
  • 1943 American movie studio executives agree to allow the Office of War Information to censor movies.
  • 1943 New volcano Paracutin erupts in farmer's corn field (Mexico)
  • 1943 Phil Wrigley & B Rickey charter All-American Girls Softball League

Battle of Eniwetok

1944 Battle of Eniwetok: US forces take Enewetak Atoll at the cost of 37 Americans killed or missing and 94 wounded, Japanese losses were 800 dead and 23 prisoners

  • 1944 World War II: The "Big Week" began with American bomber raids on German aircraft manufacturing centers
  • 1947 Chemical mixing error causes explosion that destroys 42 blocks in LA

Appointment of Interest

1947 Earl Mountbatten of Burma appointed as last viceroy of India to oversee the move to independence

  • 1947 State of Prussia ceases to exist.
  • 1948 Czechoslovakia's non-communist minister resigns
  • 1949 1st International Pancake Race held (Liberal Ks)

Historic Event

1950 Dylan Thomas arrives in NYC for his 1st US poetry reading tour

  • 1950 WOL-AM in Washington, D.C. swaps calls with WWDC
  • 1953 August A Busch buys the St Louis Cards for $3.75 million
  • 1954 General Zahedi wins election in Persia
  • 1957 Hughie Tayfield takes 9-113 v England, 13 wkts for match

Historic Event

1959 The Avro Arrow program to design and manufacture supersonic jet fighters in Canada is cancelled by the Diefenbaker government amid much political debate.

  • 1965 Ranger 8 makes hard landing on the Moon, returns photos, other data
  • 1965 Turkish government of Uerguplu forms
  • 1966 Author Valery Tarsis banished in USSR
  • 1968 State troopers used tear gas to stop demonstration at Alcorn A & M
  • 1972 Sicco Mansholt becomes chairman of European Committee
  • 1975 A feud begins between the official Irish Republican Army and the Irish National Liberation Army; the two groups assassinate a number of each other's volunteers until the feud ends in June 1975
  • 1975 USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR
  • 1976 The Southeast Asia Treaty Organization disbands.
  • 1978 Egypt announces it is pulling its diplomats out of Cyprus
  • 1979 11 'loyalists' known as the "Shankill Butchers" are sentenced to life in prison for 19 murders; the gang was named for its late-night kidnapping, torture and murder (by throat slashing) of random Catholic civilians in Belfast
  • 1981 Flight readiness firing of Columbia's main engines; 20 seconds
  • 1981 James Sanford equals 50m indoor world record (5.61 sec)
  • 1983 Japan launches Tenma satellite to study x-rays (450/570 km)
  • 1987 Bomb blamed on Unabomber explodes by a computer store in Salt Lake City
  • 1988 500 die in heavy rains in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • 1988 Andre Hoffmann skates world record 1500m (1:52.06)
  • 1988 Kelly Hrudy's 5th Islander shut-out win-Hartford 3-0

Historic Event

1988 Peter Kalikow purchases NY Post from Rupert Murdoch for $37.6 million

  • 1988 Rob Druppers runs world record indoor 1000m (2:16.2)
  • 1989 An IRA bomb destroys a section of a British Army barracks in Ternhill, England
  • 1989 Members of 1949 Oklahoma football team cancel an April reunion because of the deplorable conduct of Oklahoma players

Historic Event

1991 A gigantic statue of Albania's long-time dictator, Enver Hoxha, is brought down in the Albanian capital, Tirana, by mobs of angry protesters

  • 1992 Orthodox patriarch Shenouda III visits Netherlands
  • 1994 3 Afghans take 70 Pakistani children hostage

Historic Event

1994 Pope John Paul II demands juristic discrimination of homosexuals

Historic Event

1998 UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan lands in Baghdad, for peace negotiations

  • 2001 The United States Supreme Court declines to consider an appeal by five major oil companies against Unocal's patent on production of cleaner "reformulated" gasoline sold in California
  • 2002 In Reqa Al-Gharbiya, Egypt, a fire on a train injures over 65 and kills at least 370.
  • 2005 Spain becomes the first country to vote in a referendum on ratification of the proposed Constitution of the European Union, passing it by a substantial margin, but on a low turnout.
  • 2010 On the Portuguese Atlantic island of Madeira heavy rain causes floods and mudslides, leaving at least 32 deaths in the worst disaster on the history of the archipelago.
  • 2012 Scientists successfully regenerate the flowering plant, Silene stenophylla from a 31,800 year old piece of fruit, greatly surpassing the previous record of 2,000 years
  • 2012 South Korea angers North Korea as it proceeds with live fire drills in disputed Korean sea borders
  • 2013 Estonia becomes the first country to establish a national system of fast chargers for electric cars
  • 2013 Kepler-37b, the smallest known exoplanet, is discovered
  • 2016 Gunman goes on random killing spree in Kalamazoo, Michigan, killing 6

Historic Event

2016 Jeb Bush suspends his presidential campaign

  • 2016 Tropical Cyclone Winston hits Fiji, killing at least 29 - most powerful storm on record in Southern Hemisphere winds 296 kilometers per hour (184 mph)

Election of Interest

2016 US primary elections: Nevada Democratic Primary - Hillary Clinton wins with 52.6%

Election of Interest

2016 US primary elections: South Carolina Republican Primary - Donald Trump wins with 32.5%

  • 2017 Famine is declared in Unity State, South Sudan, affecting 4.9 million

Historic Event

2018 Queen of England, Elizabeth II makes surprise appearance at London fashion week

  • 2018 Venezuela becomes the first country to launch a virtual currency, the petro, to counteract their financial crisis

Historic Event

2020 New Bank of England £20 note with painter JMW Turner released, replacing earlier one with economist Adam Smith

  • 2020 Trump associate Roger Stone sentenced to 40 months imprisonment for obstructing a congressional investigation
  • 2021 Bloodiest day of protests in Myanmar since its coup after security forces open fire, killing two people with 40 wounded in Mandalay
  • 2021 Englishwoman Jasmine Harrison (21) becomes the youngest woman to row across an ocean arriving in Antigua as part of the Atlantic Challenge after 70 days, 3 hours, 48 minutes

Historic Event

2021 US President Joe Biden declares a major disaster in Texas as state struggles to cope with aftermath of a crippling winter storm

  • 2022 Britain's 95-year-old Queen Elizabeth II tests positive for COVID-19
  • 2022 Ethiopia's Grand Renaissance Dam (Gerd), Africa's controversial and biggest-ever hydroelectric project on the Blue Nile, begins generating electricity [1]