- February 2 – Candelmas/Groundhog Day – On February 2, some people
think only of those critters that look for their shadows:
Punxsutawney Phil in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, and Wiarton Willie
in Wiarton, Ontario. In fact, there is a bit more to the day than
February 2 is also Candlemas Day. In the Christian tradition, it is
the day when a year’s supply of candles is blessed.
February 2 is 40 days after Christmas and is known as the Feast of
the Purification among Christians. “Februa” was the month for
cleansing, when Yule greens were removed from homes and churches, and
old brush and debris were burned to prepare the fields for the next
February 2 is exactly halfway between the winter solstice and the
spring equinox, and the daylight is 1 hour and 2 minutes longer on
this day than it was when winter began.
Oh, about those groundhogs: If they see their shadows, expect six
more weeks of winter.
February 5 – View Mars – Mars is very close to the Moon tonight,
one day before it crosses over into Taurus.
February 12 – Full Snow Moon – Usually the heaviest snows fall in
February, and hunting becomes very difficult. Hence, to some Native
American tribes, this was the full Hunger Moon. See more full Moon
February 12 – Abraham Lincoln’s Birthday – Lincoln was born in a
one-room log cabin on Nolin Creek in Kentucky. A complete time line
of his life is posted at The History Place. In addition to his more
famous achievements, Lincoln is the only U.S. president to have
received a U.S. patent, for something he described in this way: “A
new and improved manner of combining adjustable buoyant air chambers
with a steamboat or other vessel for the purpose of enabling their
draught of water to be readily lessened to enable them to pass over
bars, or through shallow water, without discharging their cargoes.”