Daily Almanac for Tuesday, February 14, 2023

On this date in 1974, First Double Dutch Jump Rope Tournament was held. Here is former First Lady Michelle Obama in front of the White House in 2011 involved in a Double Dutch Jump Rope with children. By The White House from Washington, DC – P071511CK-0303, Public Domain, https commons.wikimedia.org


Double Dutch is a game in which two long jump ropes turning in opposite directions are jumped by one or more players jumping simultaneously. It is believed to have originated among Dutch immigrants in New York City, although it has been a popular school playground game for much longer than that in the Netherlands, and is now popular worldwide. While it had long been a popular street activity for African American girls in New York City, the modern sport of Double Dutch originated in the early 1970s with NYPD officers Ulysses Williams and David Walker, who formalized the rules for competition. The first official competition was held in 1974. Competitions in Double Dutch range from block parties to the world level. During the spring of 2009, Double Dutch became a varsity sport in New York City public high schools.


St. Valentine

Although a Christian bishop named Valentine was martyred on February 14 in A.D. 271, there is nothing in this legend to account for the custom of choosing a sweetheart on this day.

By the early 1600s, handmade valentines were customarily sent from admirers to sweethearts. About 1800 the first commercial cards appeared. Cards were usually sent anonymously. As early as 1822, an English official reported having to hire extra postal workers on this day. In 1849, Esther Howland of Worcester, Massachusetts, started selling quality valentines so popular that she was called “Mother of the American Valentine.”

Question of the Day

What is the difference between sleet and hail?

Sleet is partially frozen rain, measuring less than 5 mm (0.2 inch) in diameter. Hail is a round piece of ice that usually falls during thunderstorms. Its average size is 0.25, or 1/4, inch in diameter, although hailstones weighing up to seven pounds have been reported.

Advice of the Day

They do not love that do not show their love.

Home Hint of the Day

Sharpening every tooth of a handsaw is more than most home carpenters care to undertake, but these saws do need to be sharpened occasionally. Your local hardware store should be able to recommend someone to do the job.

Word of the Day

Cirrostratus cloud

Thin white cloud that resembles veils.

Puzzle of the Day

Why is the horse the most curious feeder in the world?

He eats best when he has not a bit in his mouth.


  • George W. G. Ferris, Jr. (inventor of the ferris wheel) – 1859
  • Florence Henderson (actress) – 1934
  • Gregory Hines (dancer & actor) – 1946
  • Simon Pegg (actor) – 1970
  • Drew Bledsoe (football player) – 1972
  • Rob Thomas (musician) – 1972
  • Freddie Highmore (actor) – 1992
  • Allie Grant (actress) – 1994


  • Pietro Belluschi (architect) – 1994
  • Dolly the sheep (first cloned mammal) – 2003
  • Louie Bellson (big band & jazz drummer) – 2009


  • Captain James Cook, English explorer, was murdered by Hawaiian natives in a scuffle over a stolen boat– 1779
  • James Polk became the first president to be photographed– 1849
  • First Lady Jackie Kennedy conducted a one hour televised tour of the White House– 1962
  • First Double Dutch Jump Rope Tournament was held– 1974
  • Dolly the Cloned Sheep, the world’s first mammal cloned from an adult, put to death, due to lung problems– 2003
  • YouTube founded– 2005
  • A 70-pound meteorite from Barringer Crater in Arizona sold for $237,500 at auction– 2018


  • Valley Head, Alabama, had a record cold temperature of -18 degrees F– 1905
  • Valentine Day Blizzard in southern New England: 10-18”– 1940
  • Mountain Home, Arkansas, received 24 inches of snow– 1993

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