It happened today – on this day in history – February 28

1728: Handel’s opera “Siroe, re di Persia” premieres in London.

1749: Henry Fieldings’ novel “Tom Jones” published.

1784: John Wesley charters the Methodist Church.

1819: First performance of Franz Schubert’s song “Schäfers Klageleid”.

1847: The US defeats Mexico at the Battle of Sacramento.

1849: Tom Cunningham wins the Grand National on 20/1 shot Peter Simple.

1916: Death of writer Henry James aged 72.

1933: German President Paul von Hindenburg abolishes free expression of opinion.

1942: The Japanese land on Java.

1947: An anti-government uprising in Taiwan is violently put down by China’s Chiang Kai-shek and his Kuomintang-led Republic of China government with the loss of 18,000-28,000 lives.

1951: The Senate committee reports of at least two major US crime syndicates. On the same day, actress Gloria Swanson wins the Golden Globe for her role as Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard.

1953: Francis Crick and James Watson discover the double helix chemical structure of the DNA-molecule.

1961: President John F Kennedy names Henry Kissinger as a special advisor.

1966: Over a 100 music fans barricade themselves inside The Cavern club in Matthew Street, Liverpool, in protest at the club’s closure.

1969: Terence O’Neill is re-elected as leader of the Unionist Parliamentary Party and confirmed as Northern Ireland Prime Minister.

1970: David Bowie’s new electric band (“so new they haven’t got a name yet”) play at the Basildon Arts Lab experimental music club at Basildon Arts Centre.

1974: The British general election results in a hung parliament. On the same day, singer-songwriter Bobby Bloom shoots himself in the head at his Hollywood apartment aged 28.

1975: A London Underground train crashes at Moorgate tube station, killing 43 people. The cause has never been discovered.

1977: Ray Charles is attacked onstage by a man who tries to strangle him with a microphone cord.

1982: Singles chart:


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  1. The Lion Sleeps Tonigt – Tight Fit
  2. Mickey – Toni Basil
  3. A Town Called Malice – The Jam
  4. Love Plus One – Haircut 100
  5. Centrefold – The J Geils Band
  6. It Ain’t What You Do It’s The Way That You Do It – Fun Boy Three and Bananarama
  7. Say Hello Wave Goodbye – Soft Cell
  8. See You – Depeche Mode
  9. Golden Brown – The Stranglers
  10. Maid Of Orleans – OMD
1982: Memories – Barbra Streisand

Album chart:

  1. Memories: Love Songs – Barbra Streisand
  2. Action Trax – Various Artists
  3. Dreaming – Various Artists
  4. All For A Song – Barbara Dickson
  5. Non Stop Erotic Cabaret – Soft Cell
  6. Pelican West – Haircut 100
  7. Architecture And Morality – OMD
  8. Pearls – Elkie Brooks
  9. Dare – The Human League
  10. English Settlement – XTC

1983: The final episode of M*A*S*H shows in the US to an audience of 125 million.

1984: Michael Jackson wins a record eight Grammy awards including Album of the Year for Thriller. On the same day, satirical puppet show Spitting Image premieres on ITV.

1985: David Byron, singer with Uriah Heep dies from an epileptic fit and liver disease aged 38.

1986: Olof Palme, the prime minister of Sweden, is shot dead and his wife Lisbeth wounded in a street ambush in Stockholm.

1989: Bob Dylan begins recording his Oh Mercy album in New Orleans with producer Daniel Lanois.

1991: US President George Bush announces a ceasefire in the Gulf after Iraq accepts all 12 UN resolutions.

1993: A gun battle erupts at the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas after the FBI attempts a raid. The resulting stand-off lasts for 51 days.

1997: Death Row Records boss Marion ‘Suge’ Knight is sentenced to nine years in prison for violating his probation with a 1995 assault conviction.

1998: Serbian police begin offensive against the Kosovo Liberation Army in Kosovo. On the same day, Father Ted star Dermot Morgan dies of a heart attack aged 45.

2001: 10 people are killed and more than 70 injured when a high speed train is hit by a car which careers off the motorway at Great Heck, near Selby, North Yorks.

2005: Lebanon’s pro-Syrian prime minister, Omar Karami, resigns amid large anti-Syria street demonstrations in Beirut. On the same day, Chris Curtis, drummer with The Searchers dies aged 63.

2006: Two stewards are shot during a concert by Kanye West at the NEC in Birmingham.

2008: Boy George pleads not guilty to falsely imprisoning a male escort by chaining him to a wall. On the same day, singer/organist Mike Smith of The Dave Clark Five dies aged 64.

2011: Actress Jane Russell dies aged 89.

2014: Russia moves troops into the Crimea to protect its interests against Ukraine.

2019: The summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump collapses without agreement. On the same day, composer, arranger, and conductor André Previn dies at his home in Manhattan aged 89.

BIRTHDAYS: Dino Zoff, Italian goalkeeper, 79; Stephanie Beacham, actress, 74; Bernadette Peters, actress, 73; Gilbert Gottfried, comedian, 66; Cindy Wilson, singer (The B52s) 64; Ainsley Harriott MBE, TV presenter/chef, 64; Phil Gould, drummer (Level 42) 64; Barry McGuigan, former boxer, 60; Nigel Godrich, record producer, 50; Amanda Abbington (Smith), actress, 47; Ali Larter, actress, 45; Jake Bugg (Kennedy), singer-songwriter, 27.

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