Born on this Day in History: February 7, 1812 - Born into poverty in Portsmouth, England, Charles Dickens left school to work in a factory to support his family. His novels, most published in serial form, attracted a huge following making him one of the first international literary celebrities. His difficult early life led him to crusade for social justice, through his fiction and in life. Charles Dickens died in 1870.
On this Day in History: February 7, 1945 - A drunken visitor to the British Museum smashes the irreplaceable Portland Vase into over 200 pieces. The elaborate glass amphora was created when Augustus was Caesar and is about ten inches high. It takes months to repair.