Historic World Events / February (page 10)

February

List historic world events in February

February, 2016

  • 10 February

    Explosion kills hundreds in Brazil

    Explosion kills hundreds in Brazil

    On this day in 1984, a huge explosion destroys a shantytown in Brazil, killing at least 500 people, mostly young children. An investigation into the disaster later revealed that the true death count was impossible to know because so many bodies had in effect been cremated in the intense blaze. …

  • 10 February

    Actor Robert Mitchum is released after serving time for marijuana possession

    Actor Robert Mitchum is released after serving time for marijuana possession

    Actor Robert Mitchum is released from a Los Angeles County prison farm after spending the final week of his two-month sentence for marijuana possession there. In the fall of 1948, Mitchum, the star of classics such as Cape Fear and Night of the Hunter, was smoking a joint at a …

  • 10 February

    Communists take power in Czechoslovakia

    Communists take power in Czechoslovakia

    Under pressure from the Czechoslovakian Communist Party, President Eduard Benes allows a communist-dominated government to be organized. Although the Soviet Union did not physically intervene (as it would in 1968), Western observers decried the virtually bloodless communist coup as an example of Soviet expansion into Eastern Europe. The political scene …

  • 10 February

    Legal Tender Act passed

    Legal Tender Act passed

    On this day in 1862, the U.S. Congress passes the Legal Tender Act, authorizing the use of paper notes to pay the government’s bills. This ended the long-standing policy of using only gold or silver in transactions, and it allowed the government to finance the enormously costly Civil War long …

  • 10 February

    Miami drive-in debuts

    Miami drive-in debuts

    American drive-in movie theaters experienced their golden era during the 1950s, but some Floridians were watching movies under the stars in their cars even before then: The city of Miami gets its first drive-in on this day in 1938. The Miami drive-in charged admission of 35 cents per person, which …

  • 10 February

    British surrender Fort Sackville

    British surrender Fort Sackville

    On this day in 1779, Fort Sackville is surrendered, marking the beginning of the end of British domination in America’s western frontier. Eighteen days earlier, George Rogers Clark departed Kaskaskia on the Mississippi River with a force of approximately 170 men, including Kentucky militia and French volunteers. The party traveled …

  • 10 February

    Clay knocks out Liston

    Clay knocks out Liston

    On February 25, 1964, 22-year-old Cassius Clay shocks the odds-makers by dethroning world heavyweight boxing champ Sonny Liston in a seventh-round technical knockout. The dreaded Liston, who had twice demolished former champ Floyd Patterson in one round, was an 8-to-1 favorite. However, Clay predicted victory, boasting that he would “float …

  • 10 February

    “Merrill’s Marauders” hit Burma

    “Merrill’s Marauders” hit Burma

    On this day, Maj. Gen. Frank Merrill’s guerrilla force, nicknamed “Merrill’s Marauders,” begin a campaign in northern Burma. In August 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Prime Minister Winston Churchill agreed to create an American ground unit whose sole purpose would be to engage in a “long-range penetration mission” in …

  • 10 February

    British troops recapture Kut in Mesopotamia

    British troops recapture Kut in Mesopotamia

    The Allied war against Turkish forces gains momentum (and ground) in Mesopotamia as British and Indian troops move along the Tigris River in early 1917, recapturing the city of Kut-al-Amara and taking 1,730 Turkish prisoners on February 24. Ten months after nearly 12,000 British and Indian troops had been captured …

  • 10 February

    Airman wins Medal of Honor for action on this day

    Airman wins Medal of Honor for action on this day

    After a North Vietnamese mortar shells rocks their Douglas AC-47 gunship, Airman First Class John L. Levitow throws himself on an activated, smoking magnesium flare, drags himself and the flare to the open cargo door, and tosses it out of the aircraft just before it ignites. For saving his fellow …