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Arts & Culture

Almanac - Thursday 2/21

sticky bun by flickr user stu_spivack

Today is Thursday, February 21, the 52nd day of 2019.

There are 313 days left in the year.

27 days until spring begins

621 days until presidential elections Tuesday November 3, 2020

(1 year 8 months and 13 days from today)

The sun will rise in San Francisco at 6:51 am

and sunset will be at 5:57 pm.

We will have 11 hours and 6 minutes of daylight.

The solar noon will be at 12:24 pm.

The first high tide was at 12:56 am

and the next high tide at 12:33 pm.

The first low tide will be at 6:18 am 

and the next low tide at 6:45 pm.

The Moon is 94.5% visible; a Waning Gibbous

Moon Direction: 243.63° WSW↑

Moon Altitude: 35.39°

Moon Distance: 224539 mi

Next New Moon: Wednesday March 6, 2019 at 8:03 am

Next Full Moon: Wednesday March 20, 2019 at 6:42 pm

Next Moonset: Today at 8:27 am

Today is…

Card Reading Day

International Mother Language Day

Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day®

National Grain-Free Day

National Sticky Bun Day

Single Tasking Day

The Great American Spit Out

Today is also…

Armed Forces Day in South Africa

Birthday of King Harald V in Norway

Father Lini Day in Vanuatu

Language Movement Day in Bangladesh

International Mother Language Day (UNESCO)

The first day of the Birth Anniversary of Fifth Druk Gyalpo, celebrated until February 23. in Bhutan

The first day of the Musikahan Festival, celebrated until February 27. in Tagum CityPhilippines

Feralia in Rome

On this day in African-American History…

February 21, 1864 St. Francis Xavier Church in East Baltimore, Maryland, the first Catholic Church in the United States officially established for Negroes, was dedicated. Between 500 and 1,000 Black people fleeing the Haitian Revolution had arrived in Baltimore on six French ships in July, 1791. Most of them were free, wealthy, educated, Catholic, and spoke fluent French.A group of the refugees purchased the church in October, 1863. The church was very active by 1871 with three Sunday masses, a home for the aged poor, an orphanage, a night school for adults, an industrial school, and a lending library. The church moved to its current location in Baltimore in 1968 and continues to operate today.

February 21, 1895  North Carolina Legislature, dominated by Black Republicans and white Populists, adjourned for the day to mark the death of Frederick Douglass. 

February 21, 1905 Samuel Milton Nabrit, biologist, educator and college president, was born in Macon, Georgia. In 1955 when he became the second president of Texas Southern University. Nabrit more than doubled the enrollment of Black students in his eleven year tenure and encouraged their participation in the Civil Rights Movement. He declared that no student would be expelled for civil rights activities while he was president of the university.

February 21, 1909 Helen Octavia Dickens, medical pioneer, was born in Dayton, Ohio. Dickens earned her Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Illinois in 1932, her Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Illinois College of Medicine in 1934, the only African American female in her class, and her Master of Medical Science degree from the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Medicine in 1945.  Dickens founded the Teen Clinic at the university of Pennsylvania in 1967 for school-age mothers in the inner city. It offered educational classes, counseling, family planning, and prenatal care. She was named associate dean for minority admissions in 1969 and in that position increased the number of minorities admitted from 3 to 64.  The Helen O. Dickens Center for Women's Health at the University of Pennsylvania is named in her honor andthe Dr. Helen O. Dickens Lifetime Achievement Award is given to individuals with a long history of service to women of color.

February 21, 1915, Claudia Jones, née Claudia Vera Cumberbatch (21 February 1915 – 24 December 1964), was a Trinidad-born journalist and activist. As a child she migrated with her family to the US, where she became a political activist and black nationalistthrough Communism, using the false name Jones as "self-protective disinformation".[1] As a result of her political activities, she was deported in 1955 and subsequently resided in the United Kingdom. She founded Britain's first major black newspaper, West Indian Gazette (WIG), in 1958.[2]   

February 21, 1943 Adah Belle Samuels Thoms, hall of fame nurse, died.

Thoms was a co-founder of the National Association of Colored Graduate Nurses in 1908 and served as president from 1916 to 1923. She played a significant role in lobbying for the rights of African American women to serve in the United States military during World War I. In Thoms was the first recipient of the Mary Mahoney Medal from the NACGN in 1936 and was an inaugural inductee into the American Nursing Association Hall of Fame in 1976. 

February 21, 1961 Otis Frank Boykin of Chicago, Illinois received patent number 2,972,726 for an improved electrical resistor which could be made more cheaply and quickly and could withstand extreme changes in temperature and tolerate and withstand various levels of pressure and physical trauma without impairing its effectiveness. This device is used in electrical devices, including guided missiles, computers, and a control unit for artificial heart stimulators.

February 21, 1961 Frederick McKinley Jones, hall of fame inventor and businessman, died. Jones was born May 17, 1893 in Cincinnati, Ohio.   Jones designed a portable air-cooling unit for trucks carrying perishable food around 1935 and received patent number 2,475,841 for it July 12, 1949. His air coolers made it possible to ship perishable food long distances during any time of the year. His units were also important during World War II, preserving blood, medicine, and food. Jones was awarded 61 patents during his lifetime, mostly for refrigeration equipment but also for portable X-ray machines, sound equipment, and gasoline engines. He was the first African American elected into the American Society of Refrigeration Engineers in 1944. 

Malcolm X (39) assassinated in Audubon Ballroom at  Feb 21, 1965     

February 21, 1968 Clifford Chester Sims, Congressional Medal of Honor recipient, was killed in action. Sims was born June 18, 1942 in Port St. Joe, Florida.

Feb 21, 1987  African Americans in Tampa, Florida rebelled after an African American man was killed by a white police officer while in custody.

February 21, 1992 Eva Jessye, the first Black woman to receive international distinction as a professional choral conductor, died.

February 21, 2015 Clark Terry, hall of fame jazz trumpeter and educator, died.     

African-American History Birthdays today inlcude…       

February 21, 1917 Tadley Peake "Tadd" Dameron, hall of fame jazz composer, arranger and pianist, was born in Cleveland, Ohio.    

Robert Mugabe, in full Robert Gabriel Mugabe (born February 21, 1924, Kutama, Southern Rhodesia [now Zimbabwe]), the first prime minister (1980–87) of the reconstituted state of Zimbabwe, formerly Rhodesia. 

Feb 21, 1933  Nina Simone  born Eunice Kathleen Waymon; February 21, 1933 – April 21, 2003) was an American singer, songwriter, pianist, arranger, and activist in the Civil Rights Movement.

Feb 21, 1936  Barbara Charline Jordan was born in Houston Texas’s Fifth Ward.

Feb 21, 1940  John Lewis was born in Troy, Alabama on February 21, 1940. 

February 21, 1945, born on this day, Larry Gossett.  He’s an elected council member for King County, which includes Seattle, Washington.  Born on February 21, 1945 in Seattle to parents, Nelmon and Johnnie Carter Gossett, Larry Gossett has been a dedicated public servant for over 40 years. 

February 21, 1961 (57), Ranking Roger born Roger Charlery was born in Birmingham, England. He was a vocalist in the 1980s band The Beat (known in the U.S. as The English Beat) and one of its successor bands, General Public. He currently leads a re-formed Beat line-up.     

Blues musician Corey Harris is 50.

Singer Rhiannon Giddens (Carolina Chocolate Drops) is 42.

Comedian-actor Jordan Peele is 40.

Also in history…

1804 – The first self-propelling steam locomotive makes its outing at the Pen-y-Darren Ironworks in Wales.

1828 – Initial issue of the Cherokee Phoenix is the first periodical to use the Cherokee syllabary invented by Sequoyah.

1842 – John Greenough is granted the first U.S. patent for the sewing machine.

1848 – Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels publish The Communist Manifesto.

1874 – The Oakland Daily Tribune publishes its first edition.

1878 – The first telephone directory is issued in New Haven, Connecticut.

1885 – The newly completed Washington Monument is dedicated.

1925 – The New Yorker publishes its first issue.

1947 – In New York City, Edwin Land demonstrates the first "instant camera", the Polaroid Land Camera, to a meeting of the Optical Society of America.

1948 – NASCAR is incorporated.

1952 – The British government, under Winston Churchill, abolishes identity cards in the UK to "set the people free".

1952 – The Bengali Language Movement protests occur at the University of Dhaka in East Pakistan (now Bangladesh).

1958 – The CND symbol, aka peace symbol, commissioned by the Direct Action Committee in protest against the Atomic Weapons Research Establishment, is designed and completed by Gerald Holtom.

1971 – The Convention on Psychotropic Substances is signed at Vienna.

1972 – United States President Richard Nixon visits the People's Republic of China to normalize Sino-American relations.

1972 – The Soviet unmanned spaceship Luna 20 lands on the Moon.

1975 – Watergate scandal: Former United States Attorney General John N. Mitchell and former White House aides H. R. Haldeman and John Ehrlichman are sentenced to prison.

1995 – Steve Fossett lands in Leader, Saskatchewan, Canada becoming the first person to make a solo flight across the Pacific Ocean in a balloon. 

Also born on this day…

1893 – Andrés Segovia, Spanish guitarist (d. 1987)

1903 – Anaïs Nin, French-American essayist and memoirist (d. 1977)

1907 – W. H. Auden, English-American poet, playwright, and composer (d. 1973)

1924 – Dorothy Blum, American computer scientist and cryptanalyst (d. 1980)

1925 – Sam Peckinpah, American director and screenwriter (d. 1984)

1927 – Erma Bombeck, American journalist and author (d. 1996)

1927 – Hubert de Givenchy, French fashion designer, founded Givenchy (d. 2018)

1929 – Chespirito, Mexican actor, director, producer, and screenwriter (d. 2014)

1935 – Richard A. Lupoff, American author

1943 – David Geffen, American businessman, co-founded DreamWorks and Geffen Records

1953 – Christine Ebersole, American actress and singer

1958 – Mary Chapin Carpenter, American singer-songwriter and guitarist

1962 – Chuck Palahniuk, American novelist and journalist

1962 – David Foster Wallace, American novelist, short story writer, and essayist (d. 2008)

1979 – Jennifer Love Hewitt, American actress and producer

1987 – Ellen Page, Canadian actress