February 14 in Pop Culture History
February 14th is…
Cream-Filled Chocolates Day: A day to celebrate and enjoy cream-filled chocolates and its variations.
National Ferris Wheel Day is a day to celebrate the invention of the Ferris Wheel and its role in amusement park history. George Washington Ferris, Jr. invented the Ferris Wheel in 1893. It was created for the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago as a response to the Eiffel Tower that was built for the 1889 Exposition Universelle in Paris. The purpose of the Ferris Wheel was to provide a great attraction that would draw people to the exposition and showcase American engineering ingenuity. The original Ferris Wheel was 264 feet tall, carried 36 cars, and could carry up to 2,160 passengers simultaneously. It was an instant success and became an iconic symbol of the modern amusement park.
Organ Donor Day: A day to raise awareness about organ donation’s importance and encourage people to register as organ donors.
Pet Theft Awareness Day is observed annually on February 14th. The day’s purpose is to raise awareness about the issue of pet theft and to encourage pet owners to take steps to protect their pets. Pet theft is a growing problem in many countries, and the observance of Pet Theft Awareness Day is an opportunity for pet owners to learn about the risks and to take precautions to keep their pets safe. The day is also a chance for animal welfare organizations to educate the public about the importance of responsible pet ownership and to advocate for stronger laws to protect pets from theft.
Valentine’s Day: A day to celebrate love and affection between intimate companions.
On National Organ Donor Day, we take the time to recognize those who have given and continue to give so selflessly. We remember their stories of courage, strength and life-saving generosity. And we encourage everyone else to consider organ donation, as well. If you’re not already a registered organ donor, please make today the day you join the movement. Signing up is easy — register online or in person at your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). It may be one of the most important actions you ever take.
The Valentine’s Day Massacre, when Al Capone had seven of Bugs Moran’s men murdered in Chicago. The Valentine’s Day Massacre was a notorious mass murder that took place on February 14, 1929, in Chicago during the Prohibition era. The massacre resulted from a power struggle between two rival gangster factions, the North Side Gang and the South Side Gang, both of which were involved in illegal activities such as bootlegging and gambling. Seven members of the North Side Gang were killed by members of Al Capone’s South Side Gang, who were dressed as police officers. The massacre was a significant turning point in the gang war and marked the decline of the North Side Gang and the rise of Al Capone as the preeminent gangster in Chicago. The media covered the Valentine’s Day Massacre and helped cement Capone’s reputation as one of the most notorious criminals in American history.
The victims included Peter Gusenberg, Frank Gusenberg, Albert Kachellek, Adam Heyer, Reinhardt Schwimmer, John May, and a mechanic named James Clark.
~270 – Valentine, a priest in Rome in the days of Emperor Claudius II, was beheaded for performing (illegal at the time) marriage ceremonies.
1779 – Captain James Cook, the great English explorer and surveyor in the Royal Navy, was murdered by natives of Hawaii during his third visit to the Pacific island group.
1822 – The patent (#X003456) was issued for the first practical grass-mowing machine to Jeremiah Bailey of Chester county, Pennsylvania.
1876 – Alexander Graham Bell and Elisha Gray both filed patent applications for their inventions related to the telephone. The two inventors were working independently of each other and were racing to develop the first practical telephone. Bell’s patent was granted on March 7, 1876, which gave him the exclusive right to use his invention as a means of communication. Elisha Gray’s patent was not granted until several months later.
Bell is often credited with inventing the telephone, but there is still some debate about whether he should have been the first to receive a patent for the invention.
1903 – The United States Department of Commerce and Labor is established (it was later split into the Department of Commerce and the Department of Labor).
1912 – Arizona was admitted at the 48th state of the United States.
1920 – The League of Women Voters formed in Chicago, IL.
1929 – Sir Alexander Fleming left a plate of staphylococcus bacteria uncovered and noticed the mold had killed much of the bacteria. He identified the mold as penicillium notatum, and shortened the name to Penicillin.
1929 – Four men came in, dressed as police at Bugs Moran’s headquarters on North Clark Street in Chicago, killing seven of Bugs’ men in what is called the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre. Moran was a rival of Al Capone.
1932 – The US team won the first bobsled competition at the Winter Olympic Games at Lake Placid, NY.
1938 – Former silent film actress Hedda Hopper began her gossip column in The Los Angeles Times.
1954 – The TV show Letter to Loretta changed its name to The Loretta Young Show. The show premiered on September 20, 1953.
1961 – Element 103, Lawrencium, was first synthesized at the University of California.
1962 – First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy gave a tour of the White House on CBS television.
1968 – Plaza Suite (Broadway Play) Opened on February 14, 1968, and closed on October 3, 1970
1970 – Live at Leeds by The Who was recorded.
1970 – # 1 Hit February 14, 1970 – February 27, 1970: Sly & the Family Stone – Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin) / Everybody Is a Star
1972 – Grease (Broadway Musical) Opened on February 14, 1972, and closed on April 13, 1980
1987 – # 1 Hit February 14, 1987 – March 13, 1987: Bon Jovi – Livin’ On A Prayer
1989 – Iranian leader Ruhollah Khomeini issued a fatwa encouraging Muslims to kill Salman Rushdie, author of The Satanic Verses.
1998 – # 1 Hit February 14, 1998 – February 27, 1998: Usher – Nice And Slow
2000 – NEAR Shoemaker became the first spacecraft to orbit around an asteroid, 433 Eros
2002 – The final Family Guy episode aired after Fox announced its cancellation. It came back after DVD sales indicated a huge audience for the show.
2004 – # 1 Hit February 14, 2004 – February 20, 2004: Outkast featuring Sleepy Brown – The Way You Move
2005 – Youtube.com was launched.