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1st February in history

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1587  – Queen Elizabeth I of England signs death warrant for Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots

1669 – French King Louis XIV limits freedom of religion

1788 –  1st US steamboat patent issued, by Georgia to Briggs & Longstreet

1835 – Slavery is abolished in Mauritius.

1884 – The first volume (A to Ant) of the Oxford English Dictionary is published.

1893 – Thomas A. Edison finishes construction of the first motion picture studio, the Black Maria in West Orange, New Jersey.

1924 – The United Kingdom recognizes the USSR.

1942 – Voice of America, the official external radio and television service of the United States government, begins broadcasting with programs aimed at areas controlled by the Axis powers.

1946 – The Parliament of Hungary abolishes the monarchy after nine centuries, and proclaims the Hungarian Republic.

1968 – Canada’s three military services, the Royal Canadian Navy, the Canadian Army and the Royal Canadian Air Force, are unified into the Canadian Forces.

1979 – The Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini returns to Tehran, Iran after nearly 15 years of exile.

1998 – Rear Admiral Lillian E. Fishburne becomes the first female African American to be promoted to rear admiral.

2002 – Daniel Pearl, American journalist and South Asia Bureau Chief of the Wall Street Journal, kidnapped January 23, 2002, is beheaded and mutilated by his captors.

2003 – Space Shuttle Columbia on mission STS-107 disintegrates during reentry into the Earth’s atmosphere, killing all seven astronauts aboard.

2005 – King Gyanendra of Nepal carries out a coup d’état to capture the democracy, becoming Chairman of the Councils of ministers.

2009 – The first cabinet of Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir was formed in Iceland, making her the country’s first female prime minister and the world’s first openly LGBT head of government.

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