Calendar for February 1st, 2014

National Freedom Day (United States)

Month of February February came from the Latin word februa, "to cleanse." The month was named after the Roman Februalia, which was a month-long festival of purification and atonement.

1709: Alexander Selkirk, a Scottish sailor, was found on an island where he had been stranded for over 4 years. His experience was the basis for Daniel DeFoe's novel, "Robinson Crusoe"

Born 1801: Thomas Cole (painter)

1840: The first dental college was incorporated, Baltimore, Maryland

Died 1851: Mary Shelley (author)

Born 1859: Victor Herbert (cellist)

1861: Texas seceded from the Union

Born 1882: Louis Stephen St. Laurent (Canadian Prime Minister)

1884: Edition one of the "Oxford English Dictionary" was published

1898: First automobile insurance policy issued

Born 1901: Clark Gable (actor)

Born 1902: Langston Hughes (poet)

Born 1932: John Hart (broadcast journalist)

Born 1937: Don Everly (musician)

Born 1938: Sherman Hemsley (actor)

Born 1952: Rick James (singer)

Born 1965: Princess Stéphanie of Monaco

Born 1965: Brandon Lee (actor)

Died 1966: Buster Keaton (actor)

Born 1968: Lisa Marie Presley (daughter of Elvis and Priscilla Presley)

1983: Gordon Matthews received a patent for "voice message exchange" system (better known as voicemail)

Born 1984: Lee Thompson Young (actor)

Died 1988: Heather O'Rourke (actress)

2003: Space shuttle Columbia broke apart during re-entry, killing all seven astronauts onboard

2004: New England Patriots' quarterback Tom Brady became the youngest quarterback to lead his team to two Super Bowl victories

2009: During Super Bowl XLIII, Pittsburgh Steeler James Harrison intercepted a pass on the goal line and returned it 100 yards for a touchdown. It was the longest play in Super Bowl history

Died 2012: Don Cornelius (creator of Soul Train)

Died 2013: Edward "Ed" Koch (former mayor of New York City)