Today is Friday, February 3, 2017.
- Sunrise: 7:12am
- Sunset: 5:36pm
34% of the waxing moon will be visible, rising at 11:19am.
Tides at the Golden Gate
- High: 4:14am/5:00pm
- Low: 10:36am/10:16pm
Special International Celebrations today…
- Foundation of the Vietnamese Communist Party - Vietnam
- Heroes' Day - Mozambique
- San Blaise - Paraguay
- Setsubun – Japan
- Bubble Gum Day
- Give Kids A Smile Day
- National Women's Physicians Day
- The Day The Music Died (see 1959, below)
- Wear Red Day
- Working Naked Day
- Carrot Cake Day
On this day in…
1488 - The Portuguese navigator Bartholomeu Diaz landed at Mossal Bay in the Cape, the first European known to have landed on the southern extremity of Africa.
1690 - The first paper money in America was issued by the Massachusetts colony. The currency was used to pay soldiers that were fighting in the war against Quebec.
1783 - Spain recognized the independence of the United States.
1809 - The territory of Illinois was created.
1815 - The world's first commercial cheese factory was established in Switzerland.
1862 - Thomas Edison printed the "Weekly Herald" and distributed it to train passengers traveling between Port Huron and Detroit, MI. It was the first time a newspaper had been printed on a train.
1869 - Edwin Booth opened his new theatre in New York City. The first production was "Romeo and Juliet".
1900 - In Frankfort, KY, gubernatorial candidate William Goebels died from an assasin's bullet wounds. On August 18, 1900, Ex-Sec. of State Caleb Powers was found guilt of conspiracy to murder Gov. Goebels.
1913 - The 16th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified. It authorized the power to impose and collect income tax.
1916 - In Ottawa, Canada's original parliament buildings burned down.
1917 - The U.S. broke off diplomatic relations with Germany, which had announced a policy of unrestricted submarine warfare.
1918 - The Twin Peaks Tunnel began service. It is the longest streetcar tunnel in the world at 11,920 feet.
1927 - The Federal Radio Commission was created when U.S. President Calvin Coolidge signed a bill.
1941 - In Vichy, France, the Nazis used force to restore Pierre Laval to office.
1945 - Russia agreed to enter World War II against Japan.
1946 - The first issue of "Holiday" magazine appeared.
1947 - Percival Prattisbecame the first black news correspondent admitted to the House and Senate press gallery in Washington, DC. He worked for "Our World" in New York City.
1951 - Dick Button won the U.S. figure skating title for the sixth time.
1951 - The Tennessee Williams play, "The Rose Tattoo", opened on Broadway in New York.
1959 - Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, the Big Bopper, and pilot Roger Peterson died in a plane crash in Iowa.
1966 - The first rocket-assisted controlled landing on the Moon was made by the Soviet space vehicle Luna IX.
1969 - At the Palestinian National Congress in Cairo, Yasser Arafat was appointed leader of the PLO.
1972 - The first Winter Olympics in Asia were held at Sapporo, Japan.
1984 - Challenger 4 was launched as the tenth space shuttle mission.
1989 - South African politician P.W. Botha unwillingly resigned both party leadership and the presidency after suffering a stroke.
1998 - Texas executed Karla Faye Tucker. She was the first woman executed in the U.S. since 1984.
1998 - In Italy, a U.S. Military plane hit a cable causing the death of 20 skiers on a lift.
2009 - Eric Holder was sworn in as attorney general. He was the first African-American to hold the post.
2010 - The Alberto Giacometti sculpture L'Homme qui marche sold for $103.7 million.
2015 - The British House of Commons voted to approve letting scientist create babies from the DNA of three people.
Today’s birthday celebrants include (or included)…
- Felix Mendelssohn 1809- Pianist, composer, conductor
- Horace Greeley 1811
- Sidney Lanier 1842
- Gertrude Stein 1874
- Norman Rockwell 1894
- Alvar Aalto 1898
- Pretty Boy Floyd (Charles Arthur "Pretty Boy" Floyd) 1904- Bank robber
- James A. Michener 1907
- Simone Weil 1909- Philosopher, political activist
- Joey Bishop 1918
- Bibi Osterwald 1920
- John Fiedler 1925
- Art Arfons 1926
- Shelley Berman 1926
- Frankie Vaughan 1928
- Peggy Ann Garner 1932
- Jeremy Kemp (Edmund Walker) 1935
- Victor Buono 1938
- Emile Griffith 1938
- Fran Tarkenton 1940
- Angelo D'Aleo (Dion and The Belmonts) 1940
- Blythe Danner 1943
- Dennis Edwards 1943
- Eric Haydock (The Hollies) 1943
- Bridget Handley 1944
- Melanie (Safka) 1947
- Dave Davies (The Kinks) 1947
- Morgan Fairchild 1950
- Nathan Lane 1956
- Lee Renaldo (Sonic Youth) 1956
- Thomas Calabro 1959
- Lol Tolhurst (Cure, Presence) 1959
- Keith Gordon 1961
- Michele Greene 1962
- Matraca Berg 1964
- Maura Tierney 1965
- Nick Hawkins (Big Audio) 1965
- Grant Barry (Reel Big Fish) 1977