This Week in History 3/20 – 3/26

This Week in History

March 20:

  • Abolitionist Harriet Beecher Stowe published her classic antislavery novel, Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1852)
  • WW2: Dachau, first Nazi concentration camp, completed (1930)
  • US Supreme Court affirms its right to review state court decisions (1816)
  • President Lyndon B. Johnson notifies Alabama’s Governor George Wallace that he will use Alabama National Guard to protect Civil Rights march from Selma to Montgomery (1965)
  • Great Fire of Boston destroys 349 buildings (1760)
  • WW1: After the sinking of 3 more American merchant ships, US President Woodrow Wilson meets with cabinet, who agree that war is inevitable (1917)
  • Alessandro Volta reports his discovery of the electric battery (1800)
  • 180 tonne blue whale caught in South Atlantic setting a record (1947)
  • American missionary David Brainerd, age 28, ended two-and-one-half years of labor among the colonial Indians of New England, after having been continually plagued with tuberculosis with he would die of seven months later (1747)
  • Birth of Fred Rogers, host of public television’s longest running children’s program Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood (1928)
  • WW2: Final ratification of peace treaty restoring sovereignty to Japan by US Senate (1952)
  • Vietnam War: US President Nixon proclaims he will end the war in 1970 (1969)
  • Napoleon enters Paris after escape from Elba, begins 100-day rule (1815)
  • United Dutch East Indian Company forms (1602)

March 21:

  • Slave ship captain John Newton, author of Amazing Grace, accepted Christ as Lord and Savoir during a fierce storm (1747)
  • Johann Sebastian Bach was born at Eisenach, Germany (1685)
  • Martin Luther King Jr. begins march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama (1965)
  • US Revolutionary War: Massacre at Hancock’s Bridge when at least 20 members of the Salem militia lost their lives, some after attempting to surrender, as Loyalists exclaimed, “Spare no one! Give no quarter!” (1778)
  • US President Harry Truman signs Executive Order 9835 requiring all federal employees to have allegiance to the United States (1947)
  • Journalist Henry Morton Stanley begins his famous expedition to Africa (1871)
  • Persia officially renamed Iran (1935)
  • Julius & Ethel Rosenberg convicted of espionage (1951)
  • The Association of International Mission Services was founded to promote the work of foreign missions among independent Pentecostal and charismatic churches (1985)
  • Olaudah Equiano aka Gustavus Vassa, a freed slave, petitions King George III and Queen Charlotte, to free enslaved Africans (1788)
  • Civil Code of Napoleon adopted in France (1804)
  • Author Louis L’Amour born (1908)

March 22:

  • Nicia Council set date for Easter as the Sunday after the first full moon following the Spring equinox (325 AD)
  • Date Gutenberg Bible might have been first published (1457)
  • US Revolutionary War: Stamp Act passed (1765)
  • Thomas Jefferson becomes the first US Secretary of State under President Washington (1790)
  • US Revolutionary War: Stamp Act passed; first direct British tax on colonists (1765)
  • Religious dissident Anne Hutchinson expelled from Massachusetts Bay Colony (1638)
  • First American Indian, Powhattan, massacre of whites Jamestown Virginia, 347 slain (1622)
  • In colonial Massachusetts, the Plymouth Colony made a treaty with the neighboring Indians which both sides kept for fifty years (1621)
  • The St. Petersburg–Tampa Airboat Line becomes the world’s first scheduled airline (1914)
  • Niagara Falls runs out of water because of a drought (1903)
  • First patent for lasers, granted to Arthur Schawlow & Charles Townes (1960)
  • First shopping mall opened in Southfield, Michigan (1954)
  • WW2: Jimmy Stewart is inducted into the Army, becoming the first major American movie star to wear a military uniform in World War II (1941)
  • WW2: Jimmy Stewart flies his 12th combat mission leading the 2nd Bomb Wing in an attack on Berlin (1945)
  • First US nursing school chartered (1861)
  • Illinois becomes first state to require sexual equality in employment (1872)
  • US is the first nation to recognize the new government of Russia (1917)
  • Vietnam War: US confirms its troops used chemical warfare against the Vietcong (1965)
  • First colonial legislation prohibiting gambling enacted (1630)
  • Edmunds Act adopted by the US to suppress polygamy, 1300 men later imprisoned under the act (1882)

March 23:

  • US Revolutionary War: Patrick Henry made his “Give me liberty or give me death” speech (1775)
  • Koldewey began excavation in ancient Babylon and unearthed many finds that proved Biblical texts about the city (1899)
  • 8th Congress of the Russian Communist Party re-establishes a five-member Politburo which becomes the center of political power in the Soviet Union. Original members Vladimir Lenin, Leon Trotsky, Joseph Stalin, Lev Kamenev and Nikolai Krestinsky (1919)
  • In London, composer George Frederic Handel’s famous oratorio Messiah was performed for the first time (1744)
  • WW2: German Reichstag grants Adolf Hitler dictatorial powers in Enabling Act (1933)
  • WW2: Largest operation in Pacific War when 1,500 US Navy ships bomb Japanese island of Okinawa (1945)
  • Wright brothers obtain airplane patent (1903)
  • US Civil War: Congress passes 2nd Reconstruction Act over President Andrew Johnson’s veto (1867)
  • WW2: In Enabling Act, German Reichstag grants Adolf Hitler dictatorial powers (1933)
  • WW2: US move native-born of Japanese ancestry into detention centers (1942)
  • English Puritans John Greenwood and Henry Barrowe tried and sentenced to death on the charge of devising and circulating seditious books (1593)
  • Elisha Otis installs his 1st elevator at 488 Broadway in New York City (1857)
  • Waltham Abbey in Essex became the last monastery in England to transfer its allegiance from the Catholic Church to the newly-established Church of England (1540)
  • Mormon John Doyle Lee was executed by a firing squad for masterminding the Mountain Meadows Massacre which killed a wagon train of 127 Arkansas Methodist emigrants bound for California (1877)
  • Elisha Otis’ 1st elevator installed (1857)
  • Draper takes first successful photo of the Moon (1840)
  • Streetcar patented (1858)
  • Flour rolling mill patented (1880)
  • First recorded use of “OK”, oll korrect, in Boston’s Morning Post (1839)

March 24:

  • US Revolutionary War: Britain enacts Quartering Act requiring colonists to provide temporary housing to British soldiers (1765)
  • Fanny Crosby, blind author of over 2,000 hymns, was born
  • William Leddra became the last Quaker in America to be martyred when he was hung in Boston (1661)
  • Roger Williams is granted a charter to colonize Rhode Island (1664)
  • El Salvador’s leading human rights activist, Archbishop Oscar Romero, was assassinated by a sniper while saying mass in a hospital chapel (1980)
  • Planet Pluto named (1930)
  • First automobile sold (1898)
  • German scientist Robert Koch discovers bacillus cause of TB (1882)
  • John Antes, first American missionary to Egypt, was born (1740)
  • Scottish King James VI, son of Mary Queen of Scots, becomes King James I of England joining the English and Scottish crowns. (1603)
  • Canada gives its black citizens the right to vote (1837)
  • Mormon Joseph Smith beaten, tarred, & feathered in Ohio (1832)
  • WW2: Largest one-day airborne drop, 600 transports & 1300 gliders (1945)
  • John D. Rockefeller Jr donates NYC East River site to the UN (1947)
  • Elvis Presley joins the army (1958)

March 25:

  • First Easter, according to calendar-maker Dionysius Exiguus (31 AD)
  • Roman Church historian Dionysius Exiguus determined this date for when the Annunciation took place (1 AD)
  • US Revolutionary War: British Parliament passes the Boston Port Act, closing the port of Boston and demanding that the city’s residents pay for tea dumped into the harbor during the Boston Tea Party (1774)
  • US Revolutionary War: Continental Congress authorized a medal for George Washington (1777)
  • RCA manufactures 1st color TV set – 12½” screen at $1,000 (1954)
  • US Civil War: First US Army Medal of Honor awarded (1863)
  • Modern Olympics began in Athens, Greece (1896)
  • Martin Luther King Jr. led 25,000 to state capitol in Montgomery, Alabama (1965)
  • In NYC, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory catches fire killing 145, all but 13 girls (1911)
  • US Supreme court rules “poll tax” unconstitutional (1966)
  • Conrad Grebel arrived in St. Gall, Switzerland preaching about the need for repentance and baptism and illegally baptizing hundreds (1525)
  • Great Awakening preacher George Whitefield started building Bethesda Orphanage which later became Bethesda School for Boys in Savannah, Georgia (1740)
  • American missionary and martyr Jim Elliot reflected in his journal, “When it comes time to die, make sure that all you have to do is die” (1951)
  • Henry Hudson embarks on an exploration for Dutch East India Co (1609)
  • Sir Walter Raleigh renews Humphrey Gilbert’s patent to explore North America (1584)
  • British Parliament abolishes slave trade throughout the British Empire; penalty of £120 per slave introduced for ship captains (1807)
  • US Socialist Party forms in Indianapolis (1900)
  • Under charter granted to Lord Baltimore, first settlers found Catholic colony of Maryland (1634)
  • Great Dayton Flood (1913)
  • Robert the Bruce crowned Robert I, King of Scots (1306)
  • Richard I the Lion Heart, King of England, is wounded by a crossbow bolt while fighting France which leads to his death on April 6 (1199)
  • Sir Walter Raleigh renews Humphrey Gilbert’s patent to explore North America (1584)
  • Greece gains independence from Turkey (1821)

March 26:

  • Birth of George Smith, famed English Assyriologist who during several expeditions to the site of ancient Nineveh unearthed over 3,000 cuneiform tablets including one which told the story of an ancient deluge similar to Noah’s Flood (1840)
  • WW2: Iwo Jima occupied and US flag raised after 18,000 Japanese & 6,000 Americans killed (1945)
  • Dr Jonas Salk announces vaccine to prevent polio (1953)
  • Focus on the Family is founded by Dr. James Dobson (1977)
  • Robert Richford Roberts, Methodist circuit rider who rode 5,400 miles the last year of his life, died at age 65 (1843)
  • Territory of Orleans organizes in Louisiana Purchase (1804)
  • Faye Edgerton, missionary to the Navajo who translated the Bible in Native American languages, was born (1889)
  • WW2: Elsie S Ott becomes first woman awarded US Air Force Medal (1943)
  • US Civil War: Voters in West Virginia approve gradual emancipation of slaves (1863)
  • Joseph Smith first published The Book of Mormon (1830)
  • Congress orders removal of Indians east of Mississippi to Louisiana (1804)
  • US forbids immigration to criminals, anarchists, paupers & the sick (1910)
  • This Side of Paradise, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s first novel, is published (1920)
  • Congress appropriates $50,000 for Inter-American highway (1930)
This entry was posted in History Sharpeners, This Week in History by Tamera Kraft. Bookmark the permalink.

About Tamera Kraft

Tamera Kraft has been a children’s pastor for over 20 years. She is the leader of a ministry called Revival Fire For Kids where she mentors other children’s leaders, teaches workshops, and is a children’s ministry consultant and children’s evangelist. She is also a writer and has curriculum published including Kid Konnection 5: Kids Entering the Presence of God published by Pathway Press. She is a recipient of the 2007 National Children’s Leaders Association Shepherd’s Cup for lifetime achievement in children’s ministry.

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