On February 20th...
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1437 King James
I of Scotland died.
1472 Orkney and
Shetland were given to Scotland by Norway, via a
sculptor Luca della Robbia died.
1768 The first
American chartered fire insurance company opened.
1790 Holy Roman
Emperor Joseph II died.
1792 The U.S.
Postal Service was created.
painter and caricaturist Honoré Daumier was
1809 The U.S.
Supreme Court ruled that the federal government's
power is greater than that of any state.
Joseph Jefferson was born.
humorist and author George Du Maurier was born.
Department of the Navy of the Confederacy was
hydraulic electric elevator was patented by Cyrus
1872 Luther Crowell patented a
machine to manufacture paper bags.
1872 The Metroplitan Museum of
Art opened in New York City.
1872 Silas Noble and J.P. Cooley
patented a toothpick manufacturing machine.
1895 Frederick Douglass, abolitionist lecturer and leader,
Photographer Ansel Adams was born.
Soviet Premier Alexsei Kosygin was born.
Actor Gale Gordon was born.
Game show host John Charles Daly was born.
1915 The Panama-Pacific International
Exposition opened in San Francisco.
The United States purchased the Danish West
Robert E. Peary, Arctic explorer who led the first
party to reach the North Pole, died.
Fashion designer Gloria Vanderbilt was born.
Film director Robert Altman was born.
Actor Sidney Poitier was born.
American Samoa was organized as a territory of the
1929 Actress Amanda Blake was
Auto racer Bobby Unser was born.
Dane Caroline Mikkelson became the first
woman to land on Antarctica.
1936 Actor Larry
Hovis was born.
1937 The first
automobile/airplane combination was tested, in
Santa Monica, California.
1937 Singer Nancy Wilson was
E.H. O'Hare single-handedly shot down five
Japanese heavy bombers, becing America's first
World War II flying ace.
1942 Hockey player Phil Esposito
A volcano literally began forming in the middle
of a corn field near Parícutin, Mexico.
The comic strip "Batman and Robin"
Actress Sandy Duncan was born.
1946 John Geils, lead guitarist
of the J Geils Band, was born.
The State of Prussia ceased to exist.
The first International Pancake Day Race was
Heiress-turned-bank robber Patty Hearst was born.
1959 The Glen Canyon Dam Bridge opened across the Colorado River near
U.S. astronaut John H. Glenn, Jr., orbited the earth three times.
Basketball player Charles Barkley was born.
Actor French Stewart was born.
Model Cindy Crawford was born.
1966 Chester W. Nimitz, Admiral
of the U.S. Navy in the Pacific during World War
Singer Kurt Cobain was born.
A Learjet 25 set a time-to-climb record to 40,000
feet of 6 minutes 19 seconds.
Major General Idi Amin Dada appointed himself
President of Uganda.
personality Walter Winchell died.
The Soviet space station Mir was
launched into earth orbit.
Singer Rhianna was born.
Actor Dick York died.
Movie critic Gene Siskel died.
During a Great White concert in West
Warwick, Rhode Island, a pyrotechnics display set
the club ablaze, killing 100 and injuring over
Sandra Dee died.
Haig, presidential adviser and Secretary of
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