Forthcoming historic anniversaries, Feb 2010

You may wish to write about the following historical events. Dates are given 6 months in advance to allow you time for research and writing.

We have painstakingly cross-checked every entry, but you are advised to check all facts again as part of your research – just in case! Please let us know of any errors you find.

A greatly expanded list of anniversaries (over 100 per month) is available in  The Date-A-Base Book 2010, which covers the whole of 2010. More details below.

300 years ago (15 Feb 1710)
Birth of King Louis XV of France

200 years ago (24 Feb 1810)
Death of Henry Cavendish, British chemist and physicist who discovered hydrogen and calculated the weight of the Earth

150 years ago (29 Feb 1860)
Birth of Herman Hollerith, American statistician who invented a tabulating machine, a forerunner of the modern computer

100 years ago (8 Feb 1910)
The Boy Scouts of America was founded in Washington, DC

100 years ago (13 Feb 1910)
Birth of William Shockley, American engineer and teacher, joint winner of the 1956 Nobel Prize for Physics for developing the transistor

100 years ago (21 Feb 1910)
Birth of Douglas Bader, British fighter pilot during WWII

100 years ago (25 Feb 1910)
Birth of Millicent Fenwick, American fashion editor and politician

100 years ago (27 Feb 1910)
Birth of Joan Bennett, American film actress

100 years ago (27 Feb 1910)
Birth of Kelly Johnson, American aircraft designer and engineer

100 years ago (27 Feb 1910)
Birth of Peter De Vries, American editor and novelist

90 years ago (1 Feb 1920)
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police was founded

90 years ago (24 Feb 1920 or 1 Apr 1920)
The National Socialist German Workers’ Party (Nazi Party) was established, changing its name from the German Worker’s Party and holding its first mass rally in Munich

80 years ago (18 Feb 1930)
American astronomer Clyde Tombaugh discovered the dwarf planet Pluto

75 years ago (2 Feb 1935)
The polygraph (lie detector) machine was tested for the first time, in an experiment conducted by Leonarde Keeler in Portage, Wisconsin, USA

75 years ago (8 Feb 1935)
Death of Max Liebermann, German artist and printmaker, the foremost proponent of Impressionism in Germany

75 years ago (11 Feb 1935)
Birth of Gene Vincent, American rock and roll singer

75 years ago (12 Feb 1935)
Death of Auguste Escoffier, French chef, known as ‘the king of chefs and the chef of kings’

75 years ago (16 Feb 1935)
Birth of Sonny Bono, American entertainer and politician

75 years ago (26 Feb 1935)
Scottish physicist Robert Watson-Watt gave the first demonstration of radar at Daventry, England

75 years ago (26 Feb 1935)
Adolf Hitler ordered Hermann Göring to establish the Luftwaffe, contravening the Treaty of Versailles, which banned German military aviation

75 years ago (28 Feb 1935)
Nylon was first produced by a team led by Wallace Carothers at DuPont Laboratories in Wilmington, Delaware, USA

60 years ago (9 Feb 1950)
Joseph McCarthy, a Republican senator from Wisconsin, announced that 205 communists had infiltrated the US State Department

50 years ago (8 Feb 1960)
Queen Elizabeth II issued an Order-in-Council stating that she and her family would be known as the House of Windsor, and that her descendants would use the surname Mountbatten-Windsor

50 years ago (8 Feb 1960)
Death of Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, British architect (Battersea Power Station, Liverpool Cathedral, Britain’s red telephone boxes, etc)

50 years ago (9 Feb 1960)
American actress Joanne Woodward received the first star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame

50 years ago (13 Feb 1960)
France tested its first atomic bomb in the Sahara desert

50 years ago (29 Feb 1960)
The city of Agadir in southern Morocco was devastated by an earthquake that killed 12,000 people

50 years ago (29 Feb 1960)
The first Playboy Club opened in Chicago, Illinois, USA

40 years ago (23 Feb 1970)
Guyana became an independent republic within the British Commonwealth

40 years ago (24 Feb 1970)
National Public Radio was founded in the USA

25 years ago (4 Feb 1985)
Representatives from 20 countries within the United Nations signed the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment

25 years ago (6 Feb 1985)
Death of James Hadley Chase, British writer

25 years ago (7 Feb 1985)
New York City chose ‘New York, New York’ as its official anthem

25 years ago (7 Feb 1985)
Death of Matt Monro, British singer

25 years ago (8 Feb 1985)
Death of William Lyons, British engineer and car manufacturer, founder of Jaguar Cars

25 years ago (11 Feb 1985)
Death of Henry Hathaway, American director and producer of Western movies (‘True Grit’, ‘How the West Was Won’, and many others)

25 years ago (16 Feb 1985)
Hezbollah – a Shi’a Islamic political and paramilitary organisation – was founded in Lebanon

25 years ago (19 Feb 1985)
The BBC broadcast the first episode of the soap opera ‘EastEnders’

25 years ago (19 Feb 1985)
American heart patient William J. Schroeder became the first person to leave hospital with a permanent artificial heart. (He lived for 620 days)

25 years ago (20 Feb 1985)
The Irish government voted to allow the sale of contraceptives, in defiance of the Catholic Church

25 years ago (20 Feb 1985)
Death of Clarence Nash, American voice actor (‘Donald Duck’)

25 years ago (27 Feb 1985)
Death of Henry Cabot Lodge, American politician and diplomat

25 years ago (28 Feb 1985)
Death of Ray Ellington, British jazz singer, drummer and bandleader

20 years ago (2 Feb 1990)
South African President FW de Klerk lifted a ban on the African National Congress (ANC) and promised to free Nelson Mandela from prison

20 years ago (7 Feb 1990)
The Soviet Union’s ruling Communist Party agreed to let other political parties stand for election, thereby giving up its monopoly on power

20 years ago (11 Feb 1990)
South African ANC leader, political activist and anti-apartheid campaigner Nelson Mandela was released from prison after 27 years

20 years ago (24 Feb 1990)
Death of Malcolm Forbes, American publisher of ‘Forbes’ magazine

20 years ago (24 Feb 1990)
Death of Johnnie Ray, American singer, songwriter and pianist

15 years ago (26 Feb 1995)
Barings, Britain’s oldest merchant bank, declared bankruptcy after their chief trader in Singapore, Nick Leeson, lost approximately £625 million on unauthorised transactions

10 years ago (4 Feb 2000)
Death of Doris Coley, American pop singer (‘The Shirelles’)

10 years ago (7 Feb 2000)
Death of Doug Henning, Canadian magician

10 years ago (11 Feb 2000)
The British government suspended Northern Ireland’s power-sharing Assembly over the IRA’s refusal to disarm

10 years ago (12 Feb 2000)
Death of Charles M. Schulz, American comic strip artist (‘Peanuts’)

10 years ago (12 Feb 2000)
Death of Tom Landry, American football coach (Dallas Cowboys)

10 years ago (23 Feb 2000)
Death of Ofra Haza, Israeli singer

10 years ago (23 Feb 2000)
Death of Stanley Matthews, British footballer

For more historic anniversaries see The Date-A-Base Book 2010, which covers the whole of 2010 and contains over 1,600 forthcoming anniversaries – more than twice as many entries per month than our standard lists featured above. Over the course of the year you’ll get to hear about hundreds of significant forthcoming anniversaries that other writers just won’t know about – giving you a huge advantage!

The Date-A-Base Book 2010 is an excellent source of ideas for all writers, journalists, film-makers, editors, researchers, producers, teachers, students, speakers and event planners. Just one article sale will pay for your copy many (many!) times over.

Dave Haslett, www.ideas4writers.co.uk

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