Friday, March 31, 2017

Today In History...

In 1492 King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain issues an edict expelling Jews from Spanish soil, except those willing to convert to Christianity.

In 1774 The British close the Boston port to commerce.

In 1814 Forces allied against Napoleon capture Paris.

In 1831 Quebec and Montreal are incorporated as cities.

In 1870 Thomas P. Mundy becomes the first black man to vote in the U.S. when he casts his ballot at a municipal election in Perth Amboy, NJ.

In 1880 Wabash, Indiana, is first town to be completely illuminated with electric light.

In 1889 French engineer Alexandre Gustave Eiffel officially opens the Eiffel Tower in Paris to the public.

In 1917 The U.S. takes possession of the Virgin Islands purchased from Denmark.

In 1918 The first U.S. daylight savings time goes into effect.

In 1922 During the Great Depression, Congress authorized the Civilian Conservation Corps.

In 1923 The first dance marathon is held in New York City with Alma Cummings setting a world record of 27 hours on her feet.

In 1925 Congress authorizes the Mount Rushmore National Memorial.

In 1932 Ford Motor Company publicly unveils its V-8 engine.

In 1933 The first newspaper is published on pine pulp paper.

In 1945 The Tennessee Williams play "The Glass Menagerie" premieres on Broadway.

In 1949 Newfoundland becomes Canada's 10th province.

In 1953 The U.N. Security Council nominates Dag Hammarskjold of Sweden to become Secretary-General.

In 1966 USSR launches Luna 10, the first spacecraft to orbit the moon.

In 1968 President Lyndon B. Johnson announces he would not seek re-election.

In 1973 Muhammad Ali defeats Ken Norton in twelve rounds for the heavyweight title. Norton breaks Ali's jaw.

In 1976 The New Jersey Supreme Court rules that Karen Quinlan, in a coma for almost a year, could be disconnected from her respirator. Quinlan, who remained comatose, died in 1985.

In 1980 Jesse Owens, of 1936 Berlin Olympics fame, dies at age 66.

In 1983 Some 5,000 people die when a major earthquake strikes southern Colombia.

In 1984 300 French soldiers leave Beirut, marking the formal end of the 19-month multinational peacekeeping effort in Lebanon by France, Britain, the U.S. and Italy.

In 1986 167 people die when a Mexicana Airlines Boeing 727 crashes in a remote mountainous region of Mexico.

In 1987 The judge in the "Baby M" case in Hackensack, NJ, awards custody of the girl born under a surrogate-motherhood contract to her father, William Stern, instead of the surrogate, Mary Beth Whitehead.

In 1988 The novel "Beloved" by Toni Morrison is awarded the Pulitzer Prize for fiction, while the Charlotte Observer wins the prize for public service for its coverage of the Praise The Lord scandal.

In 1989 The FBI announces it would conduct a criminal investigation into the massive oil spill in Alaska's Prince William Sound.

In 1990 Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev warns the Baltic republic of Lithuania to annul its declaration of independence or face "grave consequences."

In 1991 The Warsaw Pact spends the last day of its existence as a military alliance.

In 1992 The U.N. Security Council votes to ban flights and arms sales to Libya, branding it a terrorist state for shielding six men accused of blowing up Pan Am Flight 103 and a French airliner.

In 1993 The U.N. Security Council increases international pressure on Bosnian Serbs, authorizing NATO warplanes to shoot down aircraft that violated the ban on flights over Bosnia.

In 1993 Actor Brandon Lee, 28, is killed during the filming of "The Crow" in Wilmington, NC, by a gun that fired part of a dummy bullet instead of a blank.

In 1994 The PLO and Israel agree to resume talks on Palestinian autonomy, more than a month after the Hebron mosque massacre.

In 1995 Baseball players agree to end their 232-day strike after a judge granted a preliminary injunction against club owners.

In 1995 President Clinton briefly visits Haiti, where he declared the U.S. mission to restore democracy there a "remarkable success."

In 1996 Russian President Boris Yeltsin announces a halt to combat operations in Chechnya, limited troop withdrawals and a willingness to hold indirect talks with the rebels' leader.

In 1997 Jury selection begins in Denver in the trial of accused Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh.

In 1997 The U.S. Supreme Court rules that the government can force cable television systems to carry local broadcast stations.

In 1998 The UN Security Council imposes an arms embargo on Yugoslavia.

In 1998 In a historic first, the Clinton administration releases the federal government's detailed financial statement.

In 1998 Former New York congresswoman Bella Abzug dies at age 77.

In 2001 Riot police attack Slobodan Milosevic's villa in an attempt to bring the former Yugoslav president to justice.

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