March 20


1760: The “Great Fire” of Boston, Mass., destroyed 349 buildings.

1852: Harriet Beecher Stowe’s anti-slavery novel, Uncle Tom’s Cabin,” was published in Boston. (It became the best selling novel of the 19th century.)

1854: The Republican Party of the United States was organized in Ripon, Wis.


1922: The USS Langley (CV-1) was commissioned as the first U.S. Navy aircraft carrier.

1948: The first TV broadcasts of classical music in the United States, under Eugene Ormandy and Arturo Toscanini, were given on CBS and NBC.

1985: Libby Riddles (born 1956) became the first woman to win the 1,135-mile Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.


March 21


1925: The Butler Act was signed to prohibit the teaching of human evolution in Tennessee.

1928: President Calvin Coolidge presented Charles Lindbergh with the Medal of Honor at the White House for completing the first solo trans-Atlantic flight.

1952: Ohio radio disc jockey Alan Freed organized and promoted the first rock and roll concert, a five-act show called “The Moondog Coronation Ball,” at the Cleveland Arena.

1963: Alcatraz prison closed permanently.

1970: The first Earth Day proclamation was issued by San Francisco Mayor Joseph Alioto.

2006: The social media site Twitter was founded.


March 22


1621: The Pilgrims of Plymouth Colony signed a peace treaty with Massasoit of the Wampanoags.

1630: The Massachusetts Bay Colony outlawed the possession of cards, dice and gaming tables.

1871: In North Carolina, William Woods Holden became the first governor of a U.S. state to be removed from office by impeachment.

1960: Arthur Leonard Schawlow and Charles Hard Townes received the first patent for a laser.

1963: The Beatles’ first album, Please Please Me, was released in the United Kingdom.

1997: The Comet Hale-Bopp had its closest approach to Earth.


March 23


1775: Patrick Henry delivered his speech, “Give me liberty or give me death!” at St. John’s Episcopal Church, Richmond, Va.

1857: Elisha Otis’ first elevator was installed at 488 Broadway, New York City.

1956: Pakistan became the first Islamic republic in the world, and adopted Sharia law.

1983: President Ronald Reagan made his first proposal to develop technology to intercept enemy missiles from outer space, a.k.a. Star Wars.

1989: Stanley Pons and Martin Fleischmann announced their discovery of cold fusion at the University of Utah.

2001: The Russian Mir space station was allowed to re-enter the atmosphere, where if broke apart and fell into the southern Pacific Ocean near Fiji.


March 24


1663: The Province of Carolina was granted by charter to eight British lords as a reward for their help in restoring Charles II of England to the throne.

1707: The Acts of Union 1707 was signed, officially uniting the kingdoms of England and Scotland to create the Kingdom of Great Britain.

1721: Johann Sebastian Bach dedicated six concertos to Margrave Christian Ludwig of Brandenburg-Schwedt, now commonly called the Brandenburg Concertos.

1765: The Kingdom of Great Britain passed the Quartering Act that required the 13 colonies to house British troops in private homes.

1837: Canada granted African Canadian men the right to vote.

1854: Slavery was abolished in Venezuela.

1896: Russian physicist Alexander Stepanovich  Popov (1859-1906) made the first radio signal transmission in history.

1900: Groundbreaking was held for New York’s first subway train line, that would link Manhattan and Brooklyn.

1958: Elvis Presley was drafted into the U.S. Army.

1965: Sen. Robert F. Kennedy became the first person to reach the peak of Mount Kennedy in the Yukon Territory.

1972: The United Kingdom imposed direct rule over Northern Ireland.

1975: Alex Mitchell, a 50-year-old bricklayer from Norfolk, England, died laughing while watching The Goodies. A particular scene had caused Mitchell to laugh nonstop for 25 minutes before dying of heart failure.

1980: Roman Catholic Archbishop Óscar Romero was assassinated by government troops while celebrating Mass in San Salvador.

March 25


1584: Sir Walter Raleigh was granted a patent to colonize Virginia.

1948: The first successful tornado forecast predicted that a tornado would strike Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma.

1957: The European Economic Community was established with West Germany, France, Italy, Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg as the first members.

1965: Civil rights activists led by Martin Luther King Jr. successfully completed their four-day, 50-mile march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama.

1969: During their honeymoon, John Lennon and Yoko Ono held their first “Bed-In for Peace” at the Amsterdam Hilton Hotel (until March 31).

1979: The first fully functional space shuttle orbiter, Columbia, was delivered to the John F. Kennedy Space Center to be prepared for its first launch.

1995: WikiWikiWeb, the world’s first wiki (user-editable website), and part of the Portland Pattern Repository, was made public by founder Ward Cunningham (born 1949) in Portland, Ore.

March 26


1484: William Caxton produced the first printed version of Aesop’s Fables in London.

1812: A political cartoon in the Boston Gazette coined the term “gerrymander” to describe oddly shaped electoral districts designed to help incumbents win re-election.

1942: The first female prisoners arrived at Auschwitz concentration camp in Nazi-occupied Poland.

1953: 74th Governor of Rhode Island Lincoln Chafee (2011-2015); and 24th U.S. Secretary of Labor under President George H.W. Bush) Elaine Chao.

1977: The NBC show known as Saturday Night was renamed Saturday Night Live.

1999: The “Melissa worm” infected Microsoft word processing and email systems around the world. A jury in Michigan found Dr. Jack Kevorkian

2017: The Levada center survey showed that 38% of surveyed Russians supported protests and that 67% held Putin responsible for high level corruption.