February 1 ( ):
February 2 ():
February 3 ():
- 1913 – The 16th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States was officially ratified, legalizing the income tax.
February 4 ():
- 1809 – Connecticut Governor Jonathon Trumbull defied the federal government by refusing to raise troops to enforce the Embargo Act, which he considered unconstitutional.
- 1898 – Igniting the Philippine–American War, United States Generals Otis and MacArthur spurned negotiation and led an attack against Filipino troops in Manila.
February 5 ():
- 1937 – President Franklin D. Roosevelt revealed his Judiciary Reorganization Bill, or court-packing plan, after several provisions of the New Deal were ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.
February 6 ():
- 1778 – The Treaty of Alliance and Treaty of Amity and Commerce were signed by the United States and France, signaling official recognition of the new republic.
February 7 ():
- 1795 – The 11th Amendment to the US Constitution was ratified, overruling Chisholm v. Georgia and reaffirming state sovereignty.
February 8 ():
February 9 ():
February 10 ():
- 1967 – The 25th Amendment to the United States Constitution was ratified.
- 1998 – Voters in Maine repealed a gay rights law passed in 1997 becoming the first US state to abandon such a law.
- 2005 – North Korea announced that it possesses nuclear weapons.
February 11 ():
- 1847 – Thomas Alva Edison, an American inventor, scientist, and businessman, was born.
- 1990 – Nelson Mandela, after 27 years of imprisonment for anti-apartheid activism, was released.
February 12 ():
February 13 ():
- 1766 – Thomas Robert Malthus, the English demographer and political economist, was born.
- 1922 – Gordon Tullock, an American economist, was born.
- 1930 – Israel Kirzner, an American economist, was born.
February 14 ():
February 15 ():
- 1898 – The USS Maine exploded and sank in Havana, Cuba, inciting the United States to declare war on Spain.
February 16 ():
- 1887 – President Grover Cleveland vetoed the Texas Seed Bill, saying, "the government should not support the people."
- 1918 – The Council of Lithuania adopted the Act of Independence, declaring Lithuania a free state.
February 17 ():
- 1801 – The US House of Representatives broke a tie in the Electoral College, choosing Thomas Jefferson, not Aaron Burr, to be the next President.
February 18 ():
February 19 ():
- 1942 – President Franklin D. Roosevelt authorized the internment of American citizens without cause; ultimately more than 100,000 Japanese Americans were imprisoned.
February 20 ():
- 1792 – The Postal Service Act, establishing the United States Post Office Department, was signed by President George Washington.
- 1933 – The US Congress proposed the Twenty-first Amendment to the United States Constitution to end prohibition in the United States.
- 1943 – American movie studio executives agreed to allow the Office of War Information to censor movies.
- 1943 – The Saturday Evening Post published the first of Norman Rockwell's Four Freedoms in support of US President Franklin Roosevelt's 1941 State of the Union address theme of Four Freedoms.
February 21 ():
February 22 ():
- 1819 – By the Adams–Onís Treaty, Spain sold Florida to the United States for five million US dollars.
- 1856 – The Republican Party opened its first national meeting in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
- 1889 – President Grover Cleveland signed a bill admitting North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana and Washington as US states.
- 1924 – US President Calvin Coolidge became the first President to deliver a radio broadcast from the White House.
- 1948 – Communist revolution in Czechoslovakia.
- 1974 – Samuel Byck tried and failed to assassinate US President Richard Nixon.
February 23 ():
- 1903 – US President Theodore Roosevelt signed the Cuban–American Treaty, establishing a perpetual lease of the area around Guantánamo Bay.
February 24 ():
- 1803 – In Marbury v. Madison, the Supreme Court of the United States established the principle of judicial review.
- 1831 – With the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek, the Choctaws in Mississippi ceded land east of the river in exchange for payment and land in the West.
- 1868 – Andrew Johnson became the first US President to be impeached by the US House of Representatives. He was later acquitted in the Senate.
- 1917 – World War I: The U.S. ambassador to the United Kingdom is given the Zimmermann Telegram, in which Germany pledges to ensure the return of New Mexico, Texas, and Arizona to Mexico if Mexico declares war on the United States.
- 1920 – The Nazi Party is founded.
- 1999 – The State of Arizona executes Karl LaGrand, a German national convicted of murder during a botched bank robbery, in spite of Germany's legal action to attempt to save him.
- 2008 – Fidel Castro retired as the President of Cuba after nearly fifty years.
February 25 ():
- 1870 – Hiram Rhodes Revels, a Republican from Mississippi, became the first African American member of the US Congress.
- 1901 – J. P. Morgan incorporated the United States Steel Corporation.
- 1919 – Oregon placed a 1 cent per gallon tax on gasoline, becoming the first US state to levy a gasoline tax.
- 1932 – Adolf Hitler obtained German citizenship by naturalization, allowing him to run in the 1932 election for Reichspräsident.
February 26 ():
February 27 ():
- 1812 – Poet Lord Byron gave his first address as a member of the House of Lords, in defense of Luddite violence against Industrialism in his home county of Nottinghamshire.
- 1939 – United States labor law: The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that sit-down strikes violate property owners' rights and are therefore illegal.
- 1951 – The Twenty-second Amendment to the United States Constitution, limiting Presidents to two terms, is ratified.
February 28 ():