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Today in History

Ides of March
1912
Singer, songwriter, and Blues Hall of Fame guitarist, Sam "Lightnin" Hopkins born in Centreville, Texas
1921
Emmy and Golden Globe Award winning televison writer, Madelyn Pugh Davis born in Indianapolis, Indiana
1933
Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg born in Brooklyn, New York
1935
Emmy Award winning actor Judd Hirsch born in Bronx, New York
1956
My Fair Lady opens in New York City.
1959
Romance novel cover art model Fabio Lanzoni born in Milan, Italy
1966
2 killed during Watts, Los Angeles, riots
44
BC
Roman dictator Julius Caesar was assassinated by a group of nobles that included Brutus and Cassius.
459
Death of Atilla, the Hun
493
Odoacer the Barbarian, King of Italy, killed by Theodoric the Ostrogoth
1147
Alphonso I, King of Portugal, takes the fortress of Santarem from the Moors
1330
Azzone Visconti takes control of Milan, Italy
1359
The French raid Winchelsea and Rye, England
1391
Anti-Jewish riots begin in Seville, Spain next 12 mo.
1493
Christopher Columbus returns to Spain from Hispaniola after his first voyage to the New World.
1561
Father da Silveira, Portuguese envoy to the Munhumutapa of South-East Africa, is murdered
1619
John Bridgeman appointed Bishop of Chester
1649
John Milton appointed Secretary Of Foreign Tongues by the Commonwealth
1673
Salvator Rosa, Italian artist, dies at about 58
1767
Andrew Jackson, seventh president of the United States born in Waxhaw, South Carolina.
1781
In the American Revolution, Cornwallis, with 1,900 British soldiers, defeated an American force of 4,400 in the Battle of Guilford Courthouse in Connecticut.
1820
Maine became the 23rd state.
1842
Cherubini died, he was 82. Cherubini was the leading arbiter of Parisian musical taste for decades. He was the establishment figure against whom Berlioz was the great rebel.
1854
German immunologist Emil von Behring born
1869
The Cincinnati Red Stockings, the first professional baseball team in America, defeated Antioch 41-7. Later they changed their name to the Cincinnati Red Legs and then to the Cincinnati Reds.
1875
The Roman Catholic Archbishop of New York, John McCloskey, was named the first American cardinal, by Pope Pius the Ninth.
1883
In London, Irish-American terrorists attempted to blow up the offices of the Times newspaper.
1913
Hollywood movie mogul Lew Wasserman born
1913
Actor MacDonald Carey born
1913
President Woodrow Wilson held the first open presidential news conference after being in office for only 11 days. The questions had to be submitted in advance. There were only newspapers at that time.
1916
Trumpet playing band leader Harry James born
1916
President Woodrow Wilson sent 12,000 U.S. troops under General Pershing into Mexico to capture revolutionary leader Pancho Villa, who had staged several cross-border raids. The two-year expedition was unsuccessful.
1918
Lili Boulanger, first woman to win the Prix de Rome, died. She was 24 years old and suffering from tuberculosis.
1919
The American Legion was founded, in Paris.
1923
CBS CEO Laurence Tisch born
1927
Country singer Carl Smith born
1932
Former astronaut Alan L. Bean born
1933
Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg born
1933
Jazz musician Cecil Taylor born
1935
Rev. Jimmy Swaggart born
1935
Actor Judd Hirsch born
1937
The first blood bank was established in Chicago, Illinois, at the Cook County Hospital.
1940
Rock musician Phil Lesh (The Grateful Dead) born
1941
Singer Mike Love (The Beach Boys) born
1944
Rock singer-musician Sylvester "Sly Stone" Stewart born
1944
During World War II, the German-held Italian town of Monte Cassino was devastated by Allied bombs.
1945
"Going My Way" won the Academy Award for best picture of 1944, and its star, Bing Crosby, was named best actor; Ingrid Bergman was named best actress for "Gaslight."
1946
Rock singer-musician Howard Scott (War) born
1947
Sec. of Transportation Federico Pena born
1947
Rock guitarist Ry Cooder born
1954
Actor Craig Wasson born
1955
Rock singer Dee Snider (Twisted Sister) born
1955
Baseball player Mickey Hatcher (Micgael Vaughn Hatcher, Jr.) born
1956
One of Broadway's best-known musicals, "My Fair Lady," opened at the Mark Hellinger Theater. Starring Rex Harrison and Julie Andrews, the musical was adapted from the George Bernard Shaw play "Pygmalion."
1957
Actress Park Overall born
1959
Movie director Renny Harlin born
1961
Model Fabio born
1962
Actor Jimmy Baio born
1962
Singer Terence Trent D'Arby born
1963
Rock singer Bret Michaels (Poison) born
1964
Singer Rockwell born
1964
Actress Elizabeth Taylor married Richard Burton (for the first time) on the 8th floor of the Ritz Carlton in Montreal. It was her fifth marriage, his second.
1965
While addressing a joint session of Congress, President Johnson called for new legislation to guarantee every American's right to vote.
1968
US Mint stops buying and selling gold.
1971
CBS Television announced it would drop "The Ed Sullivan Show" after 23 years on the network.
1972
Rock musician Mark Hoppus (Blink 182) born
1975
Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis died near Paris at age 69.
1977
The US House of Representatives began a 90-day test to determine the feasibility of showing its sessions on television.
1977
The shows "Three's Company" and "Eight Is Enough" premiered on ABC-TV.
1979
Pope John Paul II published his first encyclical, "Redemptor Hominis," in which he warned of the growing gap between rich and poor.
1981
In Syria, over 140 hostages aboard a Pakistan Airways plane, hijacked by the militant Al Zulfiqar organization, were released after 13 days. exchange Pakistan freed 55 political prisoners.
1983
Israeli Foreign Minister Yitzhak Shamir said he was leaving Washington more optimistic about prospects for an agreement on withdrawing Israeli troops from Lebanon.
1985
Two decades of military rule in Brazil ended with the installation of a civilian government.
1985
The United States Catholic Conference, representing 285 Roman Catholic bishops, sent letters to all members of Congress, urging them to oppose funding for the MX missile.
1986
Funeral services were held in Stockholm, Sweden, for slain Prime Minister Olof Palme, who had been shot to death by an unidentified gunman.
1987
Peggy Say, the sister of Terry Anderson, the Associated Press correspondent held hostage in Lebanon, said President Reagan was being "unjustly castigated" for his arms-for-hostages deal.
1988
Paul Simon defeated Jesse Jackson in the Illinois Democratic primary, while George Bush won a ringing victory over Bob Dole in the Republican contest.
1989
Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev convened a two-day meeting of the Communist Party's Central Committee to decide on agricultural reforms.
1990
The Israeli government of Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir lost a vote of confidence in the Knesser after Shamir refused to accept a U.S. plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.
1990
Iraq executed London-based journalist Farzad Bazoft, whom it accused of spying in spite of worldwide pleas for clemency. He had worked for London's Observer newspaper.
1991
An indictment was unsealed in Los Angeles, charging four police officers with beating black motorist Rodney King.
1991
Soviet pole vaulter Sergei Bubka cleared a record 20 feet during an international meet in San Sebastian, Spain.
1992
Democratic presidential candidates debated in Chicago, criticizing President Bush's handling of the Persian Gulf War and its aftermath, and clashing over economic issues.
1992
The United Nations officially embarked on its largest peacekeeping operation with the arrival of a diplomat in Cambodia.
1993
Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin met at the White House with President Clinton, after which Rabin offered to negotiate the return of part of The Golan Heights to Syria.
1993
Searchers found the body of the sixth and last missing victim of the World Trade Center bombing in New York.
1994
Illinois Congressman Dan Rostenkowski, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, defeated four Democratic primary challengers in his bid for re-election.
1995
President Clinton issued an executive order formally blocking a $1 billion contract between Conoco and Iran to develop a huge offshore oil tract in the Persian Gulf.
1996
Pioneering aviation firm Fokker NV, once a byword for industrial expertise, collapsed, ending 77 years of Dutch aircraft making and triggering the biggest mass redundancy in Dutch history.
1996
The Liggett Group agreed to repay more than ten million dollars in Medicaid bills for treatment of smokers, settling lawsuits with five states. (The settlement came two days after Liggett, the nation's fifth-largest tobacco company, made history by settling a private class-action lawsuit alleging cigarette makers manipulated nicotine to hook smokers. )
1997
Greek frogmen and US Marines evacuated hundreds of foreigners trapped in Albania by that country's descent into anarchy.
1997
President Clinton spent a second day at Bethesda Naval Medical Center, recuperating from surgery for a partially torn knee tendon.
1998
Dr. Benjamin Spock, whose child care guidance spanned half a century, died in San Diego at 94.
1998
CBS' "60 Minutes" aired an interview with former White House employee Kathleen Willey, who said President Clinton kissed her, touched her breast and put her hand on his genitals near the Oval Office in Nov. 1993.
1998
Brazilian firefighters dug ditches in a bid to halt raging fires in the northern Amazon as officials appealed for more men and sorely needed water-dumping helicopters. "We lost control of this thing a long time ago," said fire brigade captain Kleber Gomes Cerquinho as army soldiers driving a bulldozer carved a path through the jungle to create a firebreak and check the blaze. The fires had burned out of control for two months and destroyed 2.2 million acres of farmland.
1999
The Kosovar Albanian delegation to peace talks in Paris said it was ready to sign an international accord for Kosovo.
1999
An Amtrak train slammed into a steel-filled truck at a crossing in Bourbonnais, Ill., killing 11.
1999
Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney, Billy Joel and Dusty Springfield were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
2000
TV funnyman Durward Kirby died in Fort Myers, Florida, at age 88.
2000
Their presidential nominations secured, George W. Bush and Al Gore dug in for the battle to the November Election Day. Bush said he was braced for Gore's "politics of personal destruction and distortions," and Gore argued that Bush's "risky tax scheme" would hurt the economy. _____________________________________________________________
2005
Beijing cracks down on manhole cover thefts
2005
Judge strikes down same-sex marriage ban in California
2005
Cookbook is free reference work community's most active project
2005
Brazilian President party received money from FARC, say documents
2005
Taiwanese political parties propose "anti-invasion" laws
2005
China enacts historic "anti-secession" law
2005
Former WorldCom chief found guilty of all charges
2005
Israeli General Refused NZ Visa
2005
Protesters rally in Beirut
2006
New Zealand Commonwealth Games flag-bearer announced
2006
Car explodes in Paris, at least 1 person killed
2006
Shin Corporation defamation suit fails
2006
Commonwealth Games open in Melbourne
2006
Afghan opium plantings expected to be up 40% from 2005
2006
China and Russia object to the Security Council statement on Iran
2006
Photoessay: The Idiotarod: When Good Shopping Carts Go Bad
2006
Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary called attention to Winny
2006
Tony Blair's education bill passes with support from opposition parties
2006
Australian troops to provide front-line combat support in Iraq
2006
Hawaiian dam bursts
2007
Canadian government tax processing computers back online
2007
Burgas-Alexandroupolis pipeline agreement signed in Athens
2007
Cricket World Cup: Sri Lanka vs Bermuda
2007
Missing dog's severed head found by 17-year old girl
2007
Kids game portal BBC Jam to close after competition complaints
2007
Transcript of 9/11 confession by Khalid Sheikh Mohammed released
2007
NCAA Basketball: Thursday session 1 recap
2007
Missing boy from Glynn County, Georgia found dead
2007
Cricket World Cup: Zimbabwe vs Ireland
2007
Russia and Italy share views in solving conflicts
2007
New Zealand's state broadcaster warned by police
2008
Series of explosions at Albanian arms depot leaves at least 155 dead or injured
2008
Tornado hits downtown Atlanta
2008
Tour de Taiwan Stage 7: Kam-po Wong places first for the second time
2008
National Hockey League news: March 15, 2008
2008
Scientology protest group celebrates founder's birthday worldwide
2008
Delta II launches GPS IIR-19 satellite
2008
Cassini spacecraft collects sample from geyser on Saturn's moon Enceladus
2008
Exclusive look at Bebo
2009
Space Shuttle Discovery successfully launches after a month of delays
2009
3 dead, 4 missing after Vietnamese cargo ship sinks in South China Sea
2009
Recovery planned for crashed Canadian helicopter
2009
Obama calls food safety system a 'hazard to public health'
2009
Oil spill hits Australia's Sunshine coastline
2010
Two suspected terrorists arrested in Mumbai, India
2010
Sarkozy's party defeated by Socialists in French regional elections
2010
UK government plans to replace House of Lords with elected chamber
2010
Glenbard East defeated by Benet Academy in Illinois basketball sectional
2010
Power outage affects many areas of Chile
2010
Tamil party drops commitment to independence from Sri Lanka
2010
Seven die in bombing in Falluja, Iraq
2010
Paul Schneider leaving NBC's Parks and Recreation; Rob Lowe, Adam Scott to appear in series
2010
Brazilian President arrives in Israel to start Middle East tour
2010
Four arrested in three Naperville, Illinois prostitution stings
2010
David Beckham to miss World Cup with injury
2010
Church of Scientology attempting to block 'intolerant' German film
2011
Reggae singer Smiley Culture dies during police raid in Surrey, England
2011
Fukushima reactor suffers multiple fires, radiation leak confirmed
2011
British pathologist criticised by General Medical Council
2011
Dying Canadian infant moved to U.S. hospital for medical treatment
2011
Middle Eastern troops enter Bahrain after protests
2011
Japan earthquake death toll estimated at over 10,000
2012
Three UK towns to be made cities following nationwide competition
2012
Rocky Anderson announces he will seek Americans Elect nomination
2012
German hotels step up boycotts against online travel agency HRS

In the early days of Unix, a date-tagged list of historical events was used by system administrators to add some interest to the system's Message of the Day. Whenever users logged in they would be presented with the latest system notices, perhaps some mildly amusing quotes and one or two lines of historical events, based on the current date.

Today in History (UNIX calendar) uses some of the entries from the original library but is updated with current events as well. Instead of plain text, each entry is now formatted in HTML and each day may include one or more icons of historical figures or celebrities.

Other things unique to the UNIX calendar are references to dates found in fictional literature such as Lord of the Rings, perhaps undue emphasis on people and events that were part of popular culture in the 70's and technical minutiae about computers and operating systems that might not be found in other places.

In association with Amazon, this symbol is a link to related products at amazon.com. Any proceeds resulting from the sales of these products are used to defray the cost of maintaining the Today in History site and editorial efforts.

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