On February 5:
62 AD – Earthquake in Pompeii.
1576 Henry of Navarre converted to Roman Catholicism in order to ensure his right to the throne of France.
1649 The claimant King Charles II of England and Scotland was declared King of Scotland.
1725 James Otis, American lawyer and patriot, was born.
1782 Spanish defeat British forces and capture Minorca.
1783 In Calabria, Italy, a sequence of strong earthquakes started.
1788 Robert Peel, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, was born.
1818 Jean-Baptiste Bernadotte ascended to the thrones of Sweden and Norway.
1840 John Boyd Dunlop, Scottish inventor, was born.
1878 André Citroën, French automobile pioneer, was born.
1867 New Zealand’s third public railway, the 27-kilometre line between Invercargill and the port at Bluff, built by the Southland Provincial Council, opened.
1900 The United States and the United Kingdom sign a treaty for the Panama Canal.
1908 – Daisy and Violet Hilton, British conjoined twins, were born.
1917 The current constitution of Mexico was adopted, establishing a federal republic with powers separated into independent executive, legislative, and judicial branches.
1917 – The Congress of the United States passed the Immigration Act of 1917 over President Woodrow Wilson‘s veto. Also known as the Asiatic Barred Zone Act, it forbade immigration from nearly all of south and southeast Asia.
1918 Stephen W. Thompson shot down a German airplane, the first aerial victory by the U.S. military.
1920 Frank Muir, British comedian, was born.
1924 The Royal Greenwich Observatory begins broadcasting the hourly time signals known as the Greenwich Time Signal or the “BBC pips”.
1972 Mary, Crown Princess of Denmark, was born.
1994 More than 60 people were killed and some 200 wounded when a mortar shell hit a downtown marketplace in Sarajevo.
2008 – A major tornado outbreak across the Southern United States left 57 dead.
2009 The United States Navy guided missile cruiser Port Royal ran aground off Oahu, Hawaii, damaging the ship and a coral reef.
Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.