Saturday, March 31, 2012

March 31, 1995- Murder of Selena

Selena, a Grammy Award-winning American singer-songwriter who gained worldwide fame as the lead vocalist of her family-oriented band Selena y Los Dinos and for her community involvement, was murdered by Yolanda Saldívar. Saldívar, Selena's former fan club president and clothing boutique manager, with whom she was breaking ties, persuaded the singer to meet with her secretly. Saldívar then shot and killed Selena, provoking massive public outcry from the Hispanic community. Saldívar claimed that in an attempt to end her own life she accidentally shot Selena, but the jury at her trial did not believe her; she was sentenced to life imprisonment.

The Hispanic community reacted negatively to the murder, naming the event "Black Friday". In the white community, some people did not think Selena's murder was a "big deal", prompting a backlash from her fans. Radio personality Howard Stern mocked Selena's mourners and funeral, spawning public boycotts from fans. Selena's murder reactions was compared to the deaths of John Lennon and Elvis Presley. Her funeral drew 60,000 mourners, while numerous tributes and memorials were held throughout the United States and Spanish-speaking countries. Selena's story had been documented on numerous biographical shows, series and talk shows worldwide. Her murder boosted the singer's popularity, and she became a household name in the United States, more popular than when she was alive. A law about carrying a concealed weapon was passed in Texas in the same year Selena was murdered. George W. Bush, who signed the bill, made 16 April Selena Day in Texas.

The posthumous album Dreaming of You (1995), a crossover attempt, helped Selena to become the second-fastest selling female artist, behind Janet Jackson. She was given two life-sized statues – one was built in Corpus Christi, Texas (Mirador de la Flor) while the other one was built in Apodaca, Nuevo León. Saldívar had claimed and accused Selena of multiple statements that she had tried to testify while serving her life sentence. In 1997, Warner Bros. produced Selena, the eponymous biographical film catapulted Jennifer Lopez' career. Two years later, the story of Selena inspired a Broadway musical which starred Veronica Vasquez as "Selena". In 2005, Selena ¡VIVE!, a tribute concert, was held on the tenth anniversary of Selena's murder. The concert was aired live on Univision; it went to become the most-watched Spanish-language show in the history of American television.

During the early 1990s, Selena became the "Queen of Tejano music" and was poised to become a successful American solo artist. Her fame grew throughout the U.S. and Spanish-speaking countries. To manage her growing group of admirers, Selena hired Saldívar as her fan club president. Before Selena was murdered, she had sold approximately 1.8 million albums in the U.S. At the time of her murder, Selena was recording songs for a crossover attempt, which was intended to catapult her success in the U.S. and expand her English-speaking fan base. Selena's goal was to become a pop icon similar to Donna Summer, Paula Abdul, Madonna and Mariah Carey

March 31 in History

* 307 – After divorcing his wife Minervina, Constantine marries Fausta, the daughter of the retired Roman Emperor Maximian.
* 1146 – Bernard of Clairvaux preaches his famous sermon in a field at Vézelay, urging the necessity of a Second Crusade. Louis VII is present, and joins the Crusade.
* 1492 – Queen Isabella of Castille issues the Alhambra decree, ordering her 150,000 Jewish subjects to convert to Christianity or face expulsion.
* 1717 – A sermon on "The Nature of the Kingdom of Christ" by Benjamin Hoadly, the Bishop of Bangor, provokes the Bangorian Controversy.
* 1774 – American Revolutionary War: The Kingdom of Great Britain orders the port of Boston, Massachusetts closed pursuant to the Boston Port Act.
* 1822 – The massacre of the population of the Greek island of Chios by soldiers of the Ottoman Empire following an attempted rebellion, depicted by the French artist Eugène Delacroix.
* 1854 – Commodore Matthew Perry signs the Treaty of Kanagawa with the Japanese government, opening the ports of Shimoda and Hakodate to American trade.
* 1866 – The Spanish Navy bombs the harbor of Valparaíso, Chile.
* 1877 – The family with samurai antecedents that responded to the Saigō army in Ōita Nakatsu, rebels.
* 1885 – The United Kingdom establishes a protectorate over Bechuanaland.
* 1889 – The Eiffel Tower is officially opened.
* 1903 – Richard Pearse allegedly makes a powered flight in an early aircraft.
* 1906 – The Intercollegiate Athletic Association of the United States (later the National Collegiate Athletic Association) is established to set rules for college sports in the United States.
* 1909 – Serbia accepts Austrian control over Bosnia and Herzegovina.
* 1910 – Six North Staffordshire Pottery towns federate to form modern Stoke-on-Trent.
* 1917 – The United States takes possession of the Danish West Indies after paying $25 million to Denmark, and renames the territory the United States Virgin Islands.
* 1918 – Massacre of ethnic Azerbaijanis is committed by allied armed groups of Armenian Revolutionary Federation and Bolsheviks. Nearly 12,000 Azerbaijani Muslims are killed.
* 1918 – Daylight saving time goes into effect in the United States for the first time.
* 1921 – The Royal Australian Air Force is formed.
* 1930 – The Motion Pictures Production Code is instituted, imposing strict guidelines on the treatment of sex, crime, religion and violence in film, in the U.S., for the next thirty eight years.
* 1931 – An earthquake destroys Managua, Nicaragua, killing 2,000.
* 1931 – TWA Flight 599 crashes near Bazaar, Kansas killing 8 including Knute Rockne, head football coach at the University of Notre Dame
* 1933 – The Civilian Conservation Corps is established with the mission of relieving rampant unemployment.
* 1942 – World War II: Japanese forces invade Christmas Island, then a British possession.
* 1945 – World War II: a defecting German pilot delivers a Messerschmitt Me 262A-1, the world's first operational jet-powered fighter aircraft, to the Americans, the first to fall into Allied hands.
* 1949 – The Dominion of Newfoundland joins the Canadian Confederation and becomes the 10th Province of Canada.
* 1951 – Remington Rand delivers the first UNIVAC I computer to the United States Census Bureau.
* 1957 – Elections to the Territorial Assembly of the French colony Upper Volta are held. After the elections PDU and MDV form a government.
* 1958 – In the Canadian federal election, the Progressive Conservatives, led by John Diefenbaker, win the largest percentage of seats in Canadian history, with 208 seats of 265.
* 1959 – The 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, crosses the border into India and is granted political asylum.
* 1964 – A coup d'état in Brazil establishes a military government, under the aegis of general Castello Branco.
* 1965 – An Iberia Airlines Convair 440 crashes into the sea on approach to Tangier, killing 47 of 51 occupants.
* 1966 – The Soviet Union launches Luna 10 which later becomes the first space probe to enter orbit around the Moon.
* 1970 – Explorer 1 re-enters the Earth's atmosphere after 12 years in orbit.
* 1970 – Nine terrorists from the Japanese Red Army hijack Japan Airlines Flight 351 at Tokyo International Airport, wielding samurai swords and carrying a bomb.
* 1979 – The last British soldier leaves the Maltese Islands. Malta declares its Freedom Day (Jum il-Helsien).
* 1980 – The Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific railroad operates its final train after being ordered to liquidate its assets because of bankruptcy and debts owed to creditors.
* 1985 – The first WrestleMania, the biggest wrestling event from the WWE (then the WWF), takes place in Madison Square Garden in New York.
* 1986 – A Mexicana Boeing 727 en route to Puerto Vallarta erupts in flames and crashes in the mountains northwest of Mexico City, killing 166.
* 1986 – Six metropolitan county councils are abolished in England.
* 1990 – 200,000 protestors take to the streets of London to protest against the newly introduced Poll Tax.
* 1991 – The Islamic Constitutional Movement, or Hadas, is established in Kuwait.
* 1991 – Georgian independence referendum, 1991: nearly 99 percent of the voters support the country's independence from the Soviet Union.
* 1992 – The USS Missouri, the last active United States Navy battleship, is decommissioned in Long Beach, California.
* 1994 – Human evolution: The journal Nature reports the finding in Ethiopia of the first complete Australopithecus afarensis skull.
* 1995 – Selena, an American singer, was murdered by her friend and employee of her boutiques Yolanda Saldívar who was embezzling money from the establishments. The event was named "Black Friday" by Hispanics.
* 2004 – Iraq War in Anbar Province - In Fallujah, Iraq, 4 American private military contractors working for Blackwater USA, are killed after being ambushed.

March 31 Birthdays

* 250 – Constantius Chlorus, Roman Emperor (d. 306)
* 1360 – Philippa of Lancaster, queen of Portugal (d. 1415)
* 1425 – Bianca Maria Visconti, Duchess of Milan (d. 1468)
* 1499 – Pope Pius IV (d. 1565)
* 1504 – Guru Angad Dev, second Sikh guru (d. 1552)
* 1519 – King Henry II of France (d. 1559)
* 1536 – Ashikaga Yoshiteru, Japanese shogun (d. 1565)
* 1576 – Louise Juliana of Nassau, Regent of Bohemia (d. 1644)
* 1596 – René Descartes, French philosopher, mathematician (d. 1650)
* 1621 – Andrew Marvell, English poet (d. 1678)
* 1651 – Karl II, Elector Palatine (d. 1685)
* 1675 – Pope Benedict XIV (d. 1758)
* 1718 – Infanta Mariana Victoria of Spain (d. 1781)
* 1723 – King Frederick V of Denmark (d. 1766)
* 1730 – Étienne Bézout, French mathematician (d. 1783)
* 1732 – Joseph Haydn, Austrian composer (d. 1809)
* 1747 – Johann Abraham Peter Schulz, German musician and composer (d. 1800)
* 1777 – Charles Cagniard de la Tour, French physicist (d. 1859)
* 1778 – Coenraad Jacob Temminck, Dutch zoologist (d. 1858)
* 1794 – Thomas McKean Thompson McKennan, American politician and cabinet member (d. 1852)
* 1809 – Edward FitzGerald, English poet (d. 1883)
* 1809 – Otto Lindblad, Swedish composer (d. 1864)
* 1809 – Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol, Ukrainian-born Russian writer (d. 1852)
* 1819 – Prince Chlodwig zu Hohenlohe-Schillingsfürst, German statesman (d. 1901)
* 1823 – Mary Boykin Chesnut, American author (d. 1886)
* 1847 – Yegor Ivanovich Zolotarev, Russian mathematician (d. 1878)
* 1855 – Alfred E. Hunt, American entrepreneur (d. 1899)
* 1871 – Arthur Griffith, Irish politician (d. 1922)
* 1872 – Alexandra Kollontai, Russian statesman (d. 1952)
* 1872 – Sergei Diaghilev, Russian ballet impresario (d. 1929)
* 1876 – Borisav Stanković, Serbian writer (d. 1927)
* 1878 – Jack Johnson, American boxer (d. 1946)
* 1884 – Adriaan van Maanen, Dutch-born American astronomer (d. 1946)
* 1885 – Pascin, Bulgarian painter (d. 1930)
* 1890 – William Lawrence Bragg, English physicist, Nobel laureate (d. 1971)
* 1891 – Victor Varconi, Hungarian film actor (d. 1976)
* 1893 – Clemens Krauss, Austrian conductor (d. 1954)
* 1895 – Vardis Fisher, American author (d. 1968)
* 1906 – Shin'ichiro Tomonaga, Japanese physicist, Nobel laureate (d. 1979)
* 1907 – Eddie Quillan, American actor (d. 1990)
* 1908 – Red Norvo, American jazz vibraphonist (d. 1999)
* 1911 – Elisabeth Grümmer, German soprano (d. 1986)
* 1912 – William Lederer, American writer (d. 2009)
* 1914 – Octavio Paz, Mexican diplomat and writer, Nobel laureate (d. 1998)
* 1915 – Albert Hourani, English historian (d. 1993)
* 1915 – Shoichi Yokoi, Japanese military man (d. 1997)
* 1916 – Lucille Bliss, American voice actress
* 1916 – John H. Wood, Jr., American jurist (d. 1979)
* 1919 – Frank Akins, American football player (d. 1993)
* 1920 – Deborah Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire, English noble
* 1922 – Richard Kiley, American actor and singer (d. 1999)
* 1924 – Leo Buscaglia, American author (d. 1998)
* 1924 – Charles Guggenheim, American film director and producer (d. 2002)
* 1925 – Jean Coutu, French Canadian actor (d. 1999)
* 1926 – John Fowles, English author (d. 2005)
* 1927 – César Chávez, American labor activist (d. 1993)
* 1927 – William Daniels, American actor
* 1928 – Lefty Frizzell, American singer and songwriter (d. 1975)
* 1928 – Gordie Howe, Canadian ice hockey player
* 1929 – Liz Claiborne, Belgian-born American fashion designer (d. 2007)
* 1929 – Bertram Fields, American lawyer
* 1931 – Miller Barber, American golfer
* 1932 – John Jakes, American writer
* 1932 – Nagisa Oshima, Japanese film director
* 1933 – Nichita Stănescu, Romanian poet (d. 1983)
* 1934 – Richard Chamberlain, American actor
* 1934 – Shirley Jones, American singer and actress
* 1934 – John D. Loudermilk, American singer and songwriter
* 1934 – Carlo Rubbia, Italian physicist, Nobel Laureate
* 1935 – Herb Alpert, American trumpeter and band leader
* 1935 – Judith Rossner, American author
* 1936 – Marge Piercy, American writer
* 1936 – Bob Pulford, Canadian ice hockey player
* 1936 – Dokumamushi Sandayu, Japanese actor
* 1938 – Sheila Dikshit, Indian statesman
* 1938 – Bill Hicke, Canadian ice hockey player (d. 2005)
* 1938 – Michiko Nomura, Japanese voice actor
* 1938 – Arthur B. Rubinstein, American composer
* 1938 – David Steel, Scottish politician
* 1939 – Zviad Gamsakhurdia, Georgian politician (d. 1993)
* 1939 – Volker Schlöndorff, German film director
* 1939 – Karl-Heinz Schnellinger, German footballer
* 1940 – Barney Frank, American politician
* 1940 – Patrick Leahy, American politician
* 1941 – Franco Bonvicini, also known as Bonvi, Italian comic book artist (Sturmtruppen, Nick Carter) (d. 1995)
* 1942 – Ulla Hoffmann, Swedish politician
* 1942 – Michael Savage, American radio host and political commentator
* 1943 – Christopher Walken, American actor
* 1944 – Pascal Danel, French singer and songwriter
* 1944 – Mick Ralphs, English guitarist (Mott the Hoople, Bad Company)
* 1945 – Valerie Curtin, American actress, writer, and producer
* 1945 – Gabe Kaplan, American actor and comedian
* 1945 – Myfanwy Talog, Welsh actress (d. 1995)
* 1946 – Gonzalo Márquez, Venezuelan baseball player (d. 1984)
* 1947 – Kristian Blak, Danish musician and recording executive
* 1947 – César Gaviria Trujillo, Colombian politician
* 1948 – Al Gore, 45th Vice President of the United States and Nobel laureate
* 1948 – Rhea Perlman, American actress
* 1948 – Gustaaf Van Cauter, Belgian cyclist
* 1950 – András Adorján, Hungarian chess player
* 1950 – Ed Marinaro, American football player and actor
* 1951 – Frankie Sabath, Puerto Rican performer/singer
* 1952 – Dermot Morgan, Irish actor and comedian (d. 1998)
* 1955 – Robert Vance, New Zealand cricketer
* 1955 – Angus Young, Scottish-born Australian guitarist (AC/DC)
* 1957 – Alan Duncan, British politician
* 1957 – Marc McClure, American actor
* 1957 – Kyle Secor, American actor
* 1958 – Tony Cox, American actor
* 1959 – Markus Hediger, Swiss poet and translator
* 1959 – Ali McMordie, Irish bassist (Stiff Little Fingers)
* 1960 – Michelle Nicastro, American actress and singer (d. 2010)
* 1962 – John Taylor, American football player
* 1963 – Paul Mercurio, Australian actor/dancer
* 1964 – Fez Marie Whatley, American radio host and comedian
* 1964 – Paul Wong Koon-Chung, Hong Kong musician (Beyond)
* 1965 – Tom Barrasso, American ice hockey player
* 1965 – Jean-Christophe Lafaille, French mountaineer (d. 2006)
* 1965 – Steven T. Seagle, American comic-book writer
* 1966 – Roger Black, English athlete
* 1966 – Nick Firestone, American race car driver
* 1968 – Naoya Ogawa, Japanese professional wrestler
* 1968 – J.R. Reid, American basketball player
* 1969 – Samantha Brown, American television host
* 1969 – Nyamko Sabuni, Swedish politician
* 1969 – Steve Smith, American basketball player
* 1970 – Patrick Lachman, American heavy metal singer/guitarist
* 1971 – Demetris Assiotis, Greek-Cypriot footballer
* 1971 – Pavel Bure, Russian ice hockey player
* 1971 – Craig McCracken, American Animator
* 1971 – Ewan McGregor, Scottish actor
* 1972 – Alejandro Amenábar, Spanish film director
* 1972 – Andrew Bowen, American actor
* 1972 – Ze Frank, American internet personality
* 1972 – Luca Gentili, Italian footballer
* 1972 – Hristos Polihroniou, Greek hammer thrower
* 1974 – Benjamin Eicher, Swiss film director
* 1974 – Stefan Olsdal, Swedish bassist (Placebo)
* 1975 – Emma Atkins, English actress
* 1975 – Prodromos Dreliozis, Greek basketball player
* 1975 – Adam Green, American film director
* 1976 – Ashton Moore, American porn actress
* 1976 – Josh Saviano, American actor
* 1977 – Garth Tander, Australian racing driver
* 1977 – Toshiya, Japanese musician (Dir en grey)
* 1978 – Stephen Clemence, English footballer
* 1978 – Jérôme Rothen, French footballer
* 1978 – Tony Yayo, American rapper
* 1979 – Josh Kinney, American baseball player
* 1980 – Dean Clark, English footballer
* 1980 – Michael Ryder, Canadian ice hockey player
* 1980 – Maaya Sakamoto, Japanese voice actor/Singer
* 1980 – Chien-Ming Wang, Taiwanese baseball player
* 1981 – Ryan Bingham, American singer/songwriter
* 1981 – Gerard McCarthy, British actor
* 1981 – Pa Dembo Tourray, Gambian footballer
* 1981 – Maarten van der Weijden, Dutch swimmer
* 1982 – Audrey Kawasaki, American painter
* 1982 – Ryland Blackinton, American guitarist (Cobra Starship)
* 1982 – Tal Ben Haim, Israeli footballer
* 1982 – Lennon Murphy, American rock singer/songwriter
* 1983 – Vlasios Maras, Greek gymnast
* 1983 – Paddy McCarthy, Irish footballer
* 1984 – Dario Bova, Italian footballer
* 1984 – Alberto Junior Rodríguez, Peruvian footballer
* 1984 – David Clarkson, Canadian ice hockey player
* 1984 – Eddie Johnson, American soccer player
* 1984 – James Jones, American football player
* 1984 – Yanin Vismistananda, Thai actress
* 1985 – Jessica Szohr, American actress
* 1987 – Nordin Amrabat, Dutch footballer
* 1987 – Humpy Koneru, Indian chess grandmaster
* 1987 – Eros Pisano, Italian footballer
* 1988 – Hogan Ephraim, English footballer
* 1988 – Louis van der Westhuizen, Namibian cricketer
* 1989 – Liu Zige, Chinese swimmer

Friday, March 30, 2012

March 30, 1867- Seward's Folly

The Alaska Purchase was the acquisition of the Alaska territory by the United States from Russia in the year 1867 by a treaty ratified by the Senate. The purchase, made at the initiative of United States Secretary of State William H. Seward, gained 586,412 square miles (1,518,800 km2) of new United States territory. Originally organized as the Department of Alaska, the area was successively the District of Alaska and the Alaska Territory before becoming the modern state of Alaska upon being admitted to the Union as a state in 1959.

Russia was in a difficult financial position and feared losing Russian America without compensation in some future conflict, especially to the British, whom they had fought in the Crimean War (1853–1856). While Alaska attracted little interest at the time, the population of nearby British Columbia started to increase rapidly a few years after hostilities ended, with a large gold rush there prompting the creation of a crown colony on the mainland. The Russians therefore started to believe that in any future conflict with Britain, their hard-to-defend region might become a prime target, and would be easily captured. Therefore the Tsar Alexander II decided to sell the territory. Perhaps in hopes of starting a bidding war, both the British and the Americans were approached, however the British expressed little interest in buying Alaska. The Russians in 1859 offered to sell the territory to the United States, hoping that its presence in the region would offset the plans of Russia’s greatest regional rival, Great Britain. However, no deal was brokered due to the American Civil War.

Following the Union victory in the Civil War, the Tsar then instructed the Russian minister to the United States, Eduard de Stoeckl, to re-enter into negotiations with Seward in the beginning of March 1867. The negotiations concluded after an all-night session with the signing of the treaty at 4 a.m. on March 30, 1867, with the purchase price set at $7.2 million, or about 2 cents per acre ($4.74/km2).

American public opinion was generally positive, as most editors argued that the U.S. would probably derive great economic benefits from the purchase; friendship of Russia was important; and it would facilitate the acquisition of British Columbia.

When it became clear that the Senate would not debate the treaty before its adjournment on March 30, Seward persuaded President Andrew Johnson to call the Senate back into special session the next day. Many Republicans scoffed at “Seward’s folly,” although their criticism appears to have been based less on the merits of the purchase than on their hostility to Johnson and to Seward as Johnson’s political ally. Seward mounted a vigorous campaign, however, and with support from Charles Sumner, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, won approval of the treaty on April 9 by a vote of 37–2.

For more than a year, as congressional relations with Johnson worsened, the House refused to appropriate the necessary funds. But in June 1868, after Johnson’s impeachment trial was over, Stoeckl and Seward revived the campaign for the Alaska purchase. The House finally approved the appropriation in July 1868, by a vote of 113–48.

On August 1, 1868 Riggs Bank (currently operating as PNC Bank) cashed the Treasury check for the Russian diplomats, closing on the American purchase.

With the purchase of Alaska, the United States acquired an area twice as large as Texas, but it was not until the great Klondike gold strike in 1896 that Alaska came to be seen generally as a valuable addition to American territory.

Senator Sumner had told the nation that the Russians estimated that Alaska contained about 2,500 Russians and those of mixed race, and 8,000 Indigenous people, in all about 10,000 people under the direct government of the Russian fur company, and possibly 50,000 Inuits and Alaska Natives living outside its jurisdiction. The Russians were settled at 23 trading posts, placed at accessible islands and coastal points. At smaller stations only four or five Russians were stationed to collect furs from the natives for storage and shipment when the company’s boats arrived to take it away. There were two larger towns. New Archangel, now named Sitka, had been established in 1804 to handle the valuable trade in the skins of the sea otter and in 1867 contained 116 small log cabins with 968 residents. St. Paul in the Pribilof Islands had 100 homes and 283 people and was the center of the fur seal industry.

An Aleut name, “Alaska,” was chosen by the Americans. This name had earlier, in the Russian era, denoted Alaska Peninsula, which the Russians had called Alyaska (also Alyaksa is attested, especially in older sources).

The transfer ceremony took place in Sitka on October 18, 1867. Russian and American soldiers paraded in front of the governor’s house; the Russian flag was lowered and the American flag raised amid peals of artillery.

March 30 in History

* 1282 – The people of Sicily rebel against the Angevin king Charles I, in what becomes known as the Sicilian Vespers.
* 1296 – Edward I sacks Berwick-upon-Tweed, during armed conflict between Scotland and England.
* 1814 – Napoleonic Wars: Sixth Coalition forces march into Paris.
* 1814 – Joachim Murat issues the Rimini Declaration which would later inspire Italian Unification.
* 1822 – The Florida Territory is created in the United States.
* 1842 – Anesthesia is used for the first time, in an operation by the American surgeon Dr. Crawford Long.
* 1844 – One of the most important battles of the Dominican War of Independence from Haiti takes place near the city of Santiago de los Caballeros.
* 1855 – Origins of the American Civil War: Bleeding Kansas – "Border Ruffians" from Missouri invade Kansas and force election of a pro-slavery legislature.
* 1856 – The Treaty of Paris is signed, ending the Crimean War.
* 1863 – Danish prince Wilhelm Georg is chosen as King George of Greece.
* 1867 – Alaska is purchased from Russia for $7.2 million, about 2 cent/acre ($4.19/km²), by United States Secretary of State William H. Seward.
* 1870 – Texas is readmitted to the Union following Reconstruction.
* 1885 – The Battle for Kushka triggers the Panjdeh Incident which nearly gives rise to war between the British Empire and Russian Empire.
* 1909 – The Queensboro Bridge opens, linking Manhattan and Queens.
* 1910 – The Mississippi Legislature founds The University of Southern Mississippi.
* 1912 – Sultan Abdelhafid signs the Treaty of Fez, making Morocco a French protectorate.
* 1918 – Outburst of bloody March Events in Baku and other locations of Baku Governorate.
* 1939 – The Heinkel He 100 fighter sets a world airspeed record of 463 mph.
* 1940 – Sino-Japanese War: Japan declares Nanking capital of a new Chinese puppet government, nominally controlled by Wang Ching-wei.
* 1944 – World War II: Allied bombers conduct their most severe bombing run on Sofia, Bulgaria.
* 1944 – Allied bombing raid on Nuremberg. Along the English eastern coast 795 aircraft are despatched, including 572 Lancasters, 214 Halifaxes and 9 Mosquitos. The bombers meet resistance at the coasts of Belgium and the Netherlands from German fighters. In total, 95 bombers are lost, making it the largest Bomber Command loss of World War II.
* 1945 – World War II: Soviet Union forces invade Austria and take Vienna; Polish and Soviet forces liberate Gdańsk.
* 1949 – A riot breaks out in Austurvöllur square in Reykjavík, when Iceland joins NATO.
* 1954 – The Yonge Street subway line opens in Toronto. It is the first subway in Canada.
* 1961 – The Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs is signed in New York City.
* 1965 – Vietnam War: A car bomb explodes in front of the US Embassy, Saigon, killing 22 and wounding 183 others.
* 1972 – Vietnam War: The Easter Offensive begins after North Vietnamese forces cross into the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) of South Vietnam.
* 1976 – The first Land Day protests are held in Israel/Palestine.
* 1979 – Airey Neave, a British Member of Parliament, is killed by a car bomb as he exits the Palace of Westminster. The Irish National Liberation Army claims responsibility.
* 1981 – President Ronald Reagan is shot in the chest outside a Washington, D.C., hotel by John Hinckley, Jr.
* 1982 – Space Shuttle program: STS-3 Mission is completed with the landing of Columbia at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico.
* 2006 – The United Kingdom Terrorism Act 2006 becomes a law.
* 2009 – Twelve gunmen attack the Manawan Police Academy in Lahore, Pakistan.

March 30 Birthdays

* 1326 – Ivan II of Russia, Grand Duke of Muscovy (d. 1359)
* 1432 – Mehmed II, Ottoman Sultan (d. 1481)
* 1640 – John Trenchard, English politician (d. 1695)
* 1727 – Tommaso Traetta, Italian composer (d. 1779)
* 1746 – Francisco Goya, Spanish painter (d. 1828)
* 1750 – John Stafford Smith, English composer (d. 1836)
* 1811 – Robert Bunsen, German chemist (d. 1899)
* 1820 – Anna Sewell, British author (d. 1878)
* 1830 – Mihály Zsupánek Slovene writer, poet and soldier in Hungary (d. 1898? 1905?)
* 1844 – Paul Verlaine, French poet (d. 1896)
* 1853 – Vincent van Gogh, Dutch painter (d. 1890)
* 1857 – Leon Charles Thevenin, French telegraph engineer (d. 1926)
* 1863 – Mary Calkins, American philosopher and psychologist (d. 1930)
* 1864 – Franz Oppenheimer, German sociologist (d. 1943)
* 1879 – Coen de Koning, Dutch ice skater (d. 1954)
* 1880 – Sean O'Casey, Irish dramatist (d. 1964)
* 1882 – Melanie Klein, British psychoanalyst (d. 1960)
* 1892 – Stefan Banach, Polish mathematician (d. 1945)
* 1892 – Fortunato Depero, Italian artist (d. 1960)
* 1892 – Erhard Milch, German field marshal (d. 1972)
* 1894 – Sergey Ilyushin, Russian aerospace engineer (d. 1977)
* 1895 – Jean Giono, French author (d. 1970)
* 1899 – Sharadindu Bandyopadhyay, Bengali writer (d. 1970)
* 1902 – Brooke Astor, American philanthropist (d. 2007)
* 1902 – Ted Heath, British musician and band leader (d. 1969)
* 1903 – Countee Cullen, American poet (d. 1946)
* 1903 – Joy Ridderhof, American missionary (d. 1984)
* 1904 – Ripper Collins, American baseball player (d. 1970)
* 1905 – Albert Pierrepoint, English executioner (d. 1992)
* 1907 – Friedrich August Freiherr von der Heydte, German Luftwaffe Officer (d. 1994)
* 1910 – Józef Marcinkiewicz, Polish mathematician (d. 1940)
* 1913 – Marc Davis, American animator (d. 2000)
* 1913 – Richard Helms, American CIA director (d. 2002)
* 1913 – Frankie Laine, American singer (d. 2007)
* 1913 – Censu Tabone, President of Malta
* 1914 – Sonny Boy Williamson I, American musician (d. 1948)
* 1919 – McGeorge Bundy, American National Security Advisor (d. 1996)
* 1922 – Turhan Bey, Turkish actor
* 1923 – Milton Acorn, Canadian poet (d. 1986)
* 1926 – Ingvar Kamprad, Swedish entrepreneur
* 1926 – Peter Marshall, American game show host
* 1926 – Werner Torkanowsky, German conductor (d. 1992)
* 1928 – Robert Badinter, French politician
* 1928 – Tom Sharpe, English satirical author
* 1929 – Richard Dysart, American actor
* 1930 – John Astin, American actor
* 1930 – Nicolas Browne-Wilkinson, former Lord of Appeal, UK
* 1930 – Rolf Harris, Australian artist and entertainer
* 1933 – Jean-Claude Brialy, French actor and director (d. 2007)
* 1933 – George Morfogen, American actor
* 1934 – Hans Hollein, Austrian architect
* 1935 – Karl Berger, German musicologist and musician
* 1935 – Willie Galimore, American football player (d. 1964)
* 1937 – Warren Beatty, American actor and director
* 1940 – Jerry Lucas, American basketball player
* 1940 – Hans Ragnemalm, Swedish professor of public law, and judge
* 1941 – Graeme Edge, British musician (Moody Blues)
* 1941 – Wasim Sajjad, President of Pakistan
* 1941 – Bob Smith, former American politician
* 1942 – Ruben Kun, Nauruan politician and former President of Nauru
* 1943 – Ken Forssi, American musician (Love) (d. 1998)
* 1945 – Eric Clapton, British guitarist
* 1945 – Johnnie Walker, British DJ
* 1947 – Ryszard Kotla, Polish travel writer and activist
* 1948 – Mervyn King, British economist, Governor of the Bank of England (2003–present)
* 1948 – Eddie Jordan, former owner of Jordan Grand Prix
* 1949 – Naomi Sims, American fashion model and businesswoman (d. 2009)
* 1949 – Liza Frulla, Quebec politician
* 1949 – Ray Magliozzi, American radio personality
* 1950 – Robbie Coltrane, Scottish actor and comedian
* 1951 – Yves Séguin, Quebec politician
* 1951 – Tina Monzon-Palma, Filipina broadcast journalist and news anchor
* 1952 – Peter Knights, Australian footballer and coach
* 1955 – Randy VanWarmer, American singer and songwriter (d. 2004)
* 1956 – Bill Butler, Scottish politician
* 1956 – Juanito Oiarzabal, Basque mountaineer
* 1956 – Shahla Sherkat, Iranian feminist journalist
* 1957 – Paul Reiser, American actor
* 1958 – Maurice LaMarche, Canadian voice actor
* 1959 – Peter Hugh McGregor Ellis, New Zealand convicted child abuser
* 1959 – Sabine Meyer, German clarinetist
* 1959 – Andrew Bailey, Bank of England officer
* 1961 – Doug Wickenheiser, Canadian ice hockey player (d. 1999)
* 1962 – Mark Begich, American Senator from Alaska
* 1962 – Bil Dwyer, American actor
* 1962 – MC Hammer, American rap musician
* 1963 – Eli-Eri Moura, Brazilian composer and conductor
* 1963 – Panagiotis Tsalouchidis, Greek footballer
* 1964 – Tracy Chapman, American singer
* 1964 – Vlado Bozinovski, Australian former footballer
* 1964 – Dave Ellett, Canadian hockey player
* 1964 – Ian Ziering, American actor
* 1965 – Piers Morgan, British journalist and television personality
* 1966 – Joey Castillo, American drummer (Queens of the Stone Age)
* 1966 – Efstratios Grivas, Greek chess grandmaster and author
* 1967 – Christopher Bowman, American figure skater (d. 2008)
* 1967 – Hayashibara Megumi, Japanese voice actress and singer
* 1967 – Richard Hutten, designer
* 1968 – Donna D'Errico, American actress and model
* 1968 – Celine Dion, Canadian singer
* 1971 – Mark Consuelos, American actor
* 1971 – Mari Holden, American cycle racer
* 1972 – Mili Avital, Israeli-American actress
* 1973 – Jan Koller, Czech footballer
* 1973 – Matthew Pritchard, Welsh stuntman
* 1973 – Ali Ahmed Qatari archer
* 1975 – Paul Griffen, New Zealand-born Italian rugby player
* 1975 – Bahar Soomekh, American actress
* 1976 – Mark McClelland, Northern Irish musician (Degrassi)
* 1976 – Ty Conklin, American ice hockey player
* 1976 – Obadele Thompson, Barbadian athlete
* 1978 – Chris Paterson, Scottish rugby player
* 1979 – Anatoliy Tymoschuk Ukrainian footballer
* 1979 – Norah Jones, American musician
* 1979 – Simon Webbe, English singer
* 1980 – Ricardo Osorio, Mexican footballer
* 1980 – Yalın, Turkish singer and songwriter
* 1981 – Jammal Brown, American football player
* 1981 – Andrea Masi, Italian rugby player
* 1982 – Jason Dohring, American actor
* 1982 – Mark Hudson, English footballer
* 1983 – Jérémie Aliadière, French footballer
* 1983 – Zach Gowen, American professional wrestler
* 1983 – Scott Moffatt, Canadian singer and songwriter
* 1983 – Davis Romero, Panamanian baseball player
* 1983 – Hebe Tien, Taiwanese singer (S.H.E)
* 1984 – Mario Ančić, Croatian tennis player
* 1984 – Anna Nalick, American singer and songwriter
* 1984 – Samantha Stosur, Australian tennis player
* 1986 – Beni Arashiro, Japanese singer
* 1986 – Sergio Ramos, Spanish footballer
* 1987 – Marc-Edouard Vlasic, Canadian hockey player
* 1987 – Trent Barreta, American professional wrestler
* 1988 – Thanasis Papazoglou, Greek footballer
* 1989 – Chris Sale, American baseball player
* 1990 – Allie Gonino, American actress
* 1990 – Cassie Scerbo, American actress
* 1990 – Lee Gi Kwang, Korean singer and dancer (BEAST)
* 1990 – Rodney Strasser, Sierra Leonean footballer
* 1994 – Sarah Solovay, American singer-songwriter

Thursday, March 29, 2012

March 29 1461- The Battle of Towton

The Battle of Towton was fought during the English Wars of the Roses on 29 March 1461, near the village of the same name in Yorkshire. It was the "largest and bloodiest battle ever fought on English soil". According to chroniclers, more than 50,000 soldiers from the Houses of York and Lancaster fought for hours amidst a snowstorm on that day, which was a Palm Sunday. A newsletter circulated a week after the battle reported that 28,000 died on the battlefield. The engagement brought about a monarchical change in England—Edward IV displaced Henry VI as King of England, driving the head of the Lancastrians and his key supporters out of the country.

Henry was weak in character and mentally unsound. His ineffectual rule had encouraged the nobles' schemes to establish control over him, and the situation deteriorated into a civil war between the supporters of his house and those of Richard Plantagenet, 3rd Duke of York. After the Yorkists captured Henry in 1460, the English parliament passed an Act of Accord to let York and his line succeed Henry as king. Henry's consort, Margaret of Anjou, refused to accept the dispossession of her son's right to the throne and, along with fellow Lancastrian malcontents, raised an army. Richard of York was killed at the Battle of Wakefield and his titles, including the claim to the throne, passed to his eldest son Edward. Nobles, who were previously hesitant to support Richard's claim to the throne, regarded the Lancastrians to have reneged on the Act—a legal agreement—and Edward found enough backing to denounce Henry and declare himself king. The Battle of Towton was to affirm the victor's right to rule over England through force of arms.

On reaching the battlefield, the Yorkists found themselves heavily outnumbered. Part of their force under John de Mowbray, 3rd Duke of Norfolk, had yet to arrive. The Yorkist leader Lord Fauconberg turned the tables by ordering his archers to take advantage of the strong wind to outrange their enemies. The one-sided missile exchange—Lancastrian arrows fell short of the Yorkist ranks—provoked the Lancastrians into abandoning their defensive positions. The ensuing hand-to-hand combat lasted hours, exhausting the combatants. The arrival of Norfolk's men reinvigorated the Yorkists and, encouraged by Edward, they routed their foes. Many Lancastrians were killed while fleeing; some trampled each other and others drowned in the rivers. Several who were taken as prisoners were executed.

The power of the House of Lancaster was severely reduced after this battle. Henry fled the country, and many of his most powerful followers were dead or in exile after the engagement, letting Edward rule England uninterrupted for nine years, before a brief restoration of Henry to the throne. Later generations remembered the battle as depicted in William Shakespeare's dramatic adaptation of Henry's life—Henry VI, Part 3, Act 2, Scene 5. In 1929, the Towton Cross was erected on the battlefield to commemorate the event. Various archaeological remains and mass graves related to the battle were found in the area centuries after the engagement.

March 29 in History

* 1461 – Wars of the Roses: Battle of Towton – Edward of York defeats Queen Margaret to become King Edward IV of England.
* 1500 – Cesare Borgia is given the title of Captain General and Gonfalonier by his father Rodrigo Borgia after returning from his conquests in the Romagna.
* 1549 – The city of Salvador da Bahia, the first capital of Brazil, is founded.
* 1632 – Treaty of Saint-Germain is signed returning Quebec to French control after the English had seized it in 1629.
* 1638 – Swedish colonists establish the first European settlement in Delaware, naming it New Sweden.
* 1792 – King Gustav III of Sweden dies after being shot in the back at a midnight masquerade ball at Stockholm's Royal Opera 13 days earlier. He is succeeded by Gustav IV Adolf.
* 1806 – Construction is authorized of the Great National Pike, better known as the Cumberland Road, becoming the first United States federal highway.
* 1809 – King Gustav IV Adolf of Sweden abdicates after a coup d'état. At the Diet of Porvoo, Finland's four Estates pledge allegiance to Alexander I of Russia, commencing the secession of the Grand Duchy of Finland from Sweden.
* 1831 – Great Bosnian uprising: Bosniaks rebel against Turkey.
* 1847 – Mexican-American War: United States forces led by General Winfield Scott take Veracruz after a siege.
* 1849 – The United Kingdom annexes the Punjab.
* 1857 – Sepoy Mangal Pandey of the 34th Regiment, Bengal Native Infantry mutinies against the East India Company's rule in India and inspires the protracted Indian Rebellion of 1857, also known as the Sepoy Mutiny.
* 1865 – American Civil War: Federal forces under Major General Philip Sheridan move to flank Confederate forces under Robert E. Lee as the Appomattox Campaign begins.
* 1867 – Queen Victoria gives Royal Assent to the British North America Act which establishes the Dominion of Canada on July 1.
* 1871 – The Royal Albert Hall is opened by Queen Victoria.
* 1879 – Anglo-Zulu War: Battle of Kambula: British forces defeat 20,000 Zulus.
* 1882 – The Knights of Columbus are established.
* 1886 – Dr. John Pemberton brews the first batch of Coca-Cola in a backyard in Atlanta, Georgia.
* 1911 – The M1911 .45 ACP pistol becomes the official U.S. Army side arm.
* 1930 – Heinrich Brüning is appointed German Reichskanzler.
* 1936 – In Germany, Adolf Hitler receives 99% of the votes in a referendum to ratify Germany's illegal reoccupation of the Rhineland, receiving 44.5 million votes out of 45.5 million registered voters.
* 1941 – The North American Radio Broadcasting Agreement goes into effect at 03:00 local time.
* 1941 – World War II: British Royal Navy and Royal Australian Navy forces defeat those of the Italian Regia Marina off the Peloponnesian coast of Greece in the Battle of Cape Matapan.
* 1942 – The Bombing of Lübeck in World War II is the first major success for the RAF Bomber Command against Germany and a German city.
* 1945 – World War II: Last day of V-1 flying bomb attacks on England.
* 1945 – World War II: The German 4th Army is almost destroyed by the Soviet Red Army.
* 1946 – Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México, one of Mexico's leading universities, is founded.
* 1951 – Ethel and Julius Rosenberg are convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage.
* 1957 – The New York, Ontario and Western Railway makes its final run, the first major U.S. railroad to be abandoned in its entirety.
* 1961 – The Twenty-third Amendment to the United States Constitution is ratified, allowing residents of Washington, D.C., to vote in presidential elections.
* 1971 – My Lai massacre: Lieutenant William Calley is convicted of premeditated murder and sentenced to life in prison.
* 1971 – A Los Angeles, California jury recommends the death penalty for Charles Manson and three female followers.
* 1973 – Vietnam War: The last United States combat soldiers leave South Vietnam.
* 1973 – Operation Barrel Roll, a covert US bombing campaign in Laos to stop communist infiltration of South Vietnam, ends.
* 1974 – NASA's Mariner 10 becomes the first spaceprobe to fly by Mercury. It was launched on November 3, 1973.
* 1982 – The Canada Act 1982 (U.K.) receives the Royal Assent from Queen Elizabeth II, setting the stage for the Queen of Canada to proclaim the Constitution Act, 1982.
* 1990 – The Czechoslovak parliament is unable to reach an agreement on what to call the country after the fall of Communism, sparking the so-called Hyphen War.
* 1993 – Catherine Callbeck becomes premier of Prince Edward Island and the first woman to be elected in a general election as premier of a Canadian province.
* 1999 – The Dow Jones Industrial Average closes above the 10,000 mark (10,006.78) for the first time, during the height of the internet boom.
* 1999 – A magnitude 6.8 earthquake strikes the Chamoli district in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, killing 103.
* 2002 – In reaction to the Passover massacre two days prior, Israel launches Operation Defensive Shield against Palestinian militants, its largest military operation in the West Bank since the 1967 Six-Day War.
* 2004 – Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia join NATO as full members.
* 2004 – The Republic of Ireland becomes the first country in the world to ban smoking in all work places, including bars and restaurants.
* 2008 – Thirty-five countries and over 370 cities join Earth Hour for the first time.
* 2010 – Two female suicide bombers hit the Moscow Metro system at the peak of the morning rush hour, killing 40.

March 29 Birthdays

* 1553 – Vitsentzos Kornaros, Greek Renaissance poet
* 1584 – Ferdinando Fairfax, 2nd Lord Fairfax of Cameron, English general (d. 1648)
* 1602 – John Lightfoot, English churchman (d. 1675)
* 1668 – Thomas Coram, Founder of the Foundling Hospital (d. 1751)
* 1713 – John Ponsonby, Irish politician (d. 1789)
* 1746 – Carlo Buonaparte, father of Napoleon Bonaparte (d. 1785)
* 1747 – Johann Wilhelm Hässler, German composer, organist and pianist (d. 1822)
* 1751 – Supply Belcher, American composer, singer, and compiler of tune books (d. 1836)
* 1769 – Nicolas Jean de Dieu Soult, French marshal (d. 1851)
* 1790 – John Tyler, 10th President of the United States (d. 1862)
* 1799 – Edward Smith-Stanley, 14th Earl of Derby, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (d. 1869)
* 1815 – Costache Caragiale, Romanian actor, writer, and first director of Craiova's National Theater
* 1816 – Tsultrim Gyatso, 10th Dalai Lama (d. 1837)
* 1824 – Ludwig Büchner, German philosopher and physician (d. 1899)
* 1826 – Wilhelm Liebknecht, German journalist and politician (d. 1900)
* 1867 – Cy Young, American baseball player (d. 1955)
* 1869 – Aleš Hrdlička, Czech anthropologist living in the United States (d. 1943)
* 1870 – Pavlos Melas, Greek officer who organized and participated in the Greek Struggle for Macedonia (d. 1904)
* 1873 – Tullio Levi-Civita, Italian mathematician (d. 1941)
* 1874 – Lou Hoover, First Lady of the United States (d. 1944)
* 1885 – Dezső Kosztolányi, Hungarian poet and writer (d. 1936)
* 1888 – Enea Bossi, Italian-American engineer and aviation pioneer (d. 1963)
* 1889 – Warner Baxter, American actor (d. 1951)
* 1891 – Yvan Goll, French-German writer (d. 1950)
* 1891 – Alfred Neubauer, German racing team manager (Mercedes Benz) (d. 1980)
* 1892 – József Mindszenty, Hungarian Catholic cardinal (d. 1975)
* 1895 – Ernst Jünger, German author (d. 1998)
* 1899 – Lavrenty Beria, Soviet Communist leader (d. 1953)
* 1900 – John McEwen, eighteenth Prime Minister of Australia (d. 1980)
* 1900 – Bill Aston, British racing driver (d. 1974)
* 1901 – Andrija Maurović, Croatian illustrator (d. 1981)
* 1902 – Marcel Aymé, French writer (d. 1967)
* 1902 – William Walton, English composer (d. 1983)
* 1902 – Don Miller, American college football player (d. 1979)
* 1905 – Philip Ahn, American actor (d. 1978)
* 1906 – E. Power Biggs American concert organist (d. 1977)
* 1907 – "Braguinha", Brazilian songwriter (d. 2006)
* 1908 – Arthur O'Connell, American actor (d. 1981)
* 1908 – Dennis O'Keefe, American actor (d. 1968)
* 1911 – Brigitte Horney, German actress (d. 1988)
* 1912 – Hanna Reitsch, German test pilot (d. 1979)
* 1913 – R. S. Thomas, Welsh poet (d. 2000)
* 1914 – Phil Foster, American actor (d. 1985)
* 1916 – Eugene McCarthy, American politician (d. 2005)
* 1916 – Peter Geach, British philosopher
* 1917 – Man o' War, American thoroughbred racehorse (d. 1947)
* 1918 – Lê Văn Thiêm, Vietnamese mathematician (d. 1991)
* 1918 – Pearl Bailey, American singer and actress (d. 1990)
* 1918 – Sam Walton, American businessman (d. 1992)
* 1919 – Eileen Heckart, American actress (d. 2001)
* 1920 – John Belk, American head of Belk, Inc. (d. 2007)
* 1920 – Theodore Trautwein, American judge (d. 2000)
* 1927 – John McLaughlin, American political commentator
* 1927 – John Robert Vane, English pharmacologist, Nobel laureate (d. 2004)
* 1928 – Vincent Gigante, American mafioso (d. 2005)
* 1929 – Lennart Meri, President of Estonia (d. 2006)
* 1929 – Richard Lewontin, American biologist
* 1929 – Utpal Dutt, Indian actor (d. 1993)
* 1930 – Anerood Jugnauth, President of Mauritius
* 1931 – Sopubek Begaliev, Soviet-era economist and politician (d. 2002)
* 1931 – Aleksei Gubarev, Soviet cosmonaut
* 1931 – Norman Tebbit, British politician
* 1933 – Jacques Brault, French Canadian poet
* 1934 – Paul Crouch, American televangelist
* 1936 – John A. Durkin, American politician
* 1936 – Judith Guest, American author
* 1936 – Mogens Camre, Danish politician
* 1937 – Billy Carter, brother of Jimmy Carter (d. 1988)
* 1939 – Terence Hill, Italian actor
* 1939 – Roland Arnall, American businessman and diplomat (d. 2008)
* 1940 – Ray Davis, American musician (d. 2005)
* 1940 – Astrud Gilberto, Brazilian singer
* 1941 – Joseph Hooton Taylor, Jr., American astrophysicist, Nobel laureate
* 1941 – Violeta Andrei, Romanian actress
* 1941 – Eden Kane, British singer
* 1943 – Eric Idle, English actor, writer, and composer
* 1943 – Sir John Major, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
* 1943 – Vangelis, Greek musician and composer
* 1944 – Terry Jacks, Canadian musician, songwriter, and activist
* 1944 – Denny McLain, American baseball player
* 1945 – Walt Frazier, American basketball player
* 1946 – Billy Thorpe, Australian singer (d. 2007)
* 1947 – Bobby Kimball, American singer
* 1948 – Bud Cort, American actor
* 1949 – Michael Brecker, American jazz saxophonist (d. 2007)
* 1949 – Dave Greenfield, English Keyboardist of The Stranglers
* 1949 – Keith Simpson, British politician
* 1949 – John Arthur Spenkelink, American murderer (d. 1979)
* 1950 – Norman Snow, American actor
* 1952 – Teófilo Stevenson, Cuban boxer
* 1953 – Tõnis Palts, Estonian politician
* 1954 – Dianne Kay, American actress
* 1954 – Karen Ann Quinlan, American right-to-die cause célèbre (d. 1985)
* 1955 – Earl Campbell, American football player
* 1955 – Brendan Gleeson, Irish actor
* 1955 – Christopher Lawford, American actor
* 1955 – Marina Sirtis, English actress
* 1956 – Patty Donahue, American singer (d. 1996)
* 1956 – Stephen Cole, English journalist
* 1956 – Kurt Thomas, American gymnast
* 1957 – Elizabeth Hand, American writer
* 1957 – Christopher Lambert, French actor
* 1958 – Victor Salva, American film director
* 1959 – Barry Blanchard, Canadian mountaineer
* 1959 – Perry Farrell, American musician
* 1959 – Brad McCrimmon, Canadian ice hockey player (d. 2011)
* 1961 – Gary Brabham, Australian racing driver
* 1961 – Mike Kingery, American baseball player
* 1961 – Amy Sedaris, American actress and comedian
* 1962 – Billy Beane American baseball player and executive
* 1962 – Dan Bittman, Romanian singer (Holograf)
* 1963 – Elle Macpherson, Australian model
* 1964 – Michael A. Jackson, American politician
* 1964 – Annabella Sciorra, American actress
* 1965 – Jill Goodacre, American actress and model
* 1965 – Emilios T. Harlaftis, Greek astrophysicist (d. 2005)
* 1965 – William Oefelein, American astronaut
* 1965 – Voula Patoulidou, Greek athlete
* 1967 – Brian Jordan, American baseball player
* 1967 – John Popper, American musician
* 1968 – Sue Foley, Canadian singer and guitarist
* 1968 – Lucy Lawless, New Zealand actress and singer
* 1971 – Robert Gibbs, American White House (Jan. 2009- Feb. 2011) press secretary for President Barack Obama
* 1971 – Lara Logan, South-African journalist and reporter
* 1972 – Michel Ancel, French game designer
* 1972 – Rui Costa, Portugal footballer
* 1972 – Junichi Suwabe, Japanese voice actor
* 1972 – Alex Ochoa, Cuban-American baseball player
* 1973 – Marc Overmars, Dutch footballer
* 1973 – Sebastiano Siviglia Italian footballer
* 1974 – Kristoffer Cusick, American actor
* 1974 – Marc Gené, Spanish racing car driver
* 1974 – Rachel Jones, Radio Producer
* 1976 – Igor Astarloa, Spanish cyclist
* 1976 – Jennifer Capriati, American tennis player
* 1978 – Pierre Faber, French-born German rugby player
* 1978 – Aaron Persico, New Zealand-born Italian rugby player
* 1979 – Estela Giménez, Spanish gymnast
* 1980 – China P. Arnold, American convicted murderer
* 1980 – Bruno Silva, Uruguayan footballer
* 1980 – Bill Demong, American Nordic combined skier
* 1980 – Kim Tae Hee, South Korean actress
* 1980 – Prince Hamzah bin Al Hussein of Jordan
* 1980 – Amy Mathews, Australian actress
* 1981 – Megan Hilty, American actress
* 1981 – Jlloyd Samuel, West Indian-born footballer
* 1982 – Hideaki Takizawa, Japanese artist
* 1983 – Luiza Sá, Brazilian musician
* 1983 – Jamie Woon, British musician
* 1984 – Mohamed Bouazizi, Tunisian vegetable vendor and activist (d. 2011)
* 1984 – Juan Mónaco, Argentine tennis player
* 1984 – Mai Satoda, Japanese singer
* 1985 – Maxim Lapierre, Canadian ice hockey forward
* 1985 – Mickey Pimentel, National Football League linebacker
* 1986 – Sylvan Ebanks-Blake, English footballer
* 1987 – Gianluca Freddi, Italian footballer
* 1988 – Esther Cremer, German athlete
* 1988 – Jürgen Zopp, Estonian tennis player
* 1989 – James Tomkins, English footballer
* 1990 – Lyle Taylor, British footballer
* 1991 – Hayley McFarland, American actress
* 1992 – Chris Massoglia, American actor and dancer
* 1994 – Sulli Choi, South Korean singer and dancer

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

March 28, 1942- The St Nazaire Raid

The St Nazaire Raid or Operation Chariot was a successful British amphibious attack on the heavily defended Normandie dry dock at St Nazaire in German-occupied France during the Second World War. The operation was undertaken by the Royal Navy and British Commandos under the auspices of Combined Operations Headquarters on 28 March 1942. St Nazaire was targeted because the loss of its dry dock would force any large German warship in need of repairs, such as the Tirpitz, to return to home waters rather than having a safe haven available on the Atlantic coast.

The obsolete destroyer HMS Campbeltown, accompanied by 18 smaller craft, crossed the English Channel to the Atlantic coast of France and was rammed into the Normandie dock gates. The ship had been packed with delayed-action explosives that detonated later that day, putting the dock out of service for the remainder of the war. A force of commandos landed to destroy machinery and other structures. Heavy German gunfire sank or immobilised all the small craft intended to transport the commandos back to England; the commandos had to fight their way out through the town to try to escape overland. They were forced to surrender when their ammunition was expended and they were surrounded.

After the raid only 228 men returned to Britain; 169 were killed and 215 became prisoners of war. German casualties were over 360 dead, mostly killed after the raid when Campbeltown exploded. To recognise their bravery, 89 decorations were awarded to members of the raiding party, including five Victoria Crosses. After the war St Nazaire was one of 38 battle honours awarded to the Commandos; the operation has since become known as The Greatest Raid of All.

The three destroyers and 16 small boats left Falmouth, Cornwall at 14:00 on 26 March 1942. They formed into a convoy of three lanes, with the destroyers in the middle. On arrival at St Nazaire the portside MLs were to head for the Old Mole to disembark their Commandos, while the starboard lane would make for the old entrance to the basin to disembark theirs. Not having the range to reach St Nazaire unaided, the MTB and MGB were taken under tow by the Campbeltown and Atherstone. On 27 March at 07:20 Tynedale reported a U-Boat on the surface and opened fire. The two escort destroyers left the convoy to engage the U-Boat, later identified as U-593. The U-Boat promptly dived and was unsuccessfully attacked by depth charges. The two destroyers returned to the convoy at 09:00. The convoy next encountered two French fishing trawlers. Both crews were taken off and the ships sunk for fear they might report the composition and location of the convoy. At 17:00 the convoy received a signal from Commander-in-Chief Plymouth that five German torpedo boats were in the area. Two hours later another signal informed them that another two Hunt class destroyers,HMS Cleveland and HMS Brocklesby, had been dispatched at full speed to join the convoy.

The convoy reached a position 65 nautical miles (120 km; 75 mi) off St Nazaire at 21:00 and changed course toward the estuary, leaving Atherstone and Tynedale as a sea patrol.The convoy adopted a new formation with the MGB and two torpedo MLs in the lead, followed by Campbeltown. The rest of the MLs formed two columns on either side and astern of the destroyer, with the MTB bringing up the rear. The first casualty of the raid was ML 341, which had developed engine trouble and was abandoned. At 22:00 the submarine Sturgeon directed her navigation beacon out to sea to guide the convoy in. At about the same time the Campbeltown raised the German naval ensign in an attempt to deceive any German lookouts into thinking she was a German destroyer.

At 23:30 on 27 March, five RAF squadrons (comprising 35 Whitleys and 27 Wellingtons) started their bombing runs. The bombers had to stay above 6,000 feet (1,800 m) and were supposed to remain over the port for 60 minutes to divert attention toward themselves and away from the sea. They had orders to only bomb clearly identified military targets and to drop only one bomb at a time. As it turned out, poor weather over the port (10/10ths cloud) meant that only four aircraft bombed targets in St Nazaire. Six aircraft managed to bomb other nearby targets.

The unusual behaviour of the bombers concerned Kapitän zur See Mecke. At 00:00 on 28 March, he issued a warning that there might be a parachute landing in progress. At 01:00 on 28 March, he followed up by ordering all guns to cease firing and searchlights to be extinguished in case the bombers were using them to locate the port. Everyone was placed on a heightened state of alert. The harbour defence companies and ships' crews were ordered out of the air raid shelters. During all this a lookout reported seeing some activity out at sea, so Mecke began suspecting some type of landing and ordered extra attention to be paid to the approaches to the harbour.

The convoy had just entered the Loire at 01:22 on 28 March when searchlights on both banks of the estuary highlighted the ships and a naval signal light demanded their identification. Before they could reply to the challenge, some shore batteries opened fire. A German-speaking signaller replied to the challenge using German signals:

"Urgent—have two damaged ships following enemy engagement. Demand immediate entry" and "ship considering herself to be under fire from friendly forces"

This deception lasted only a few minutes before the German guns opened fire again. At 01:28, with the convoy under sporadic fire and only 1 mile (1.6 km) from the dock gates, Beattie ordered the German flag lowered and the White Ensign raised, the intensity of the German fire increased. The guard ship opened fire but was quickly silenced when every ship in the convoy responded, shooting into her as they passed.By now all the ships in the convoy were within range to engage targets ashore and were firing at the gun emplacements and searchlights. Despite being hit a number of times Campbeltown had increased speed to 19 kn (35 km/h). The helmsman on her bridge was killed and his replacement was wounded, he was also replaced. Blinded by the searchlights, Beattie only knew they were close to their objective when the MGB turned into the estuary. Still under heavy fire, Campbeltown cleared the end of the Old Mole, crashed through an anti-torpedo net strung across the entrance, and at 01:34 rammed the dock gates, only three minutes later than scheduled. The force of the impact drove the ship 33 feet (10 m) onto the gates.

The Commandos on Campbeltown now disembarked: two assault teams, five demolition teams with their protectors and a mortar group. Three demolition teams were tasked with destroying the dock pumping machinery and other installations associated with the drydock. Another team successfully destroyed four gun emplacements, losing four men. The fifth team also succeeded in completing all their objectives but almost half its men were killed. The other two Commando groups were not as successful. The MLs transporting Groups One and Two had almost all been destroyed on their approach. ML 457 was the only boat to land its Commandos on the Old Mole and only ML 177 had managed to reach the gates at the old entrance to the basin. That team succeeded in planting charges on two tugboats moored in the basin. There were only two other MLs in the vicinity: ML 160 had continued past the dock and was engaging targets upriver, ML 269 appeared to be out of control and was running in circles. By this time the crew of the Campbeltown had detonated the scuttling charges and gathered at the rear of the ship to be taken off. ML 177 came alongside the destroyer and took 30 men on board including Beattie and some of the wounded. Major Copland went through the Campbeltown and evacuated the wounded towards the Old Mole, not knowing that there were no other boats there to take the Commandos off.

Lt Col Newman aboard the MGB, need not have landed, but he was one of the first ashore. One of his first actions was to direct mortar fire onto a gun position on top of the submarine pens that was causing heavy casualties among the Commandos. He next directed machine-gun fire onto an armed trawler, which was forced to withdraw upriver. Newman organised a defence that succeeded in keeping the increasing numbers of German reinforcements at bay until the demolition parties had completed their tasks.

Some 100 Commandos were still ashore when Newman realised that evacuation by sea was no longer an option. He gathered the survivors and issued three orders:

To do our best to get back to England;
Not to surrender until all our ammunition is exhausted;
Not to surrender at all if we can help it.

Newman and Copland led the charge from the old town across a bridge raked by machine gun fire and advanced into the new town. The Commandos attempted to get through the narrow streets of the town and into the surrounding countryside, but were eventually surrounded. When their ammunition was expended they were forced to surrender. Not all the Commandos were captured; five men reached neutral Spain, from where they eventually returned to England.

The explosive charges in HMS Campbeltown detonated at noon on 28 March 1942, and the dry dock was destroyed. Both tankers that were in the dock were swept away by the wall of water and sunk. A party of 40 senior German officers and civilians who were on a tour of the ship were killed. In total, the explosion killed about 360 men. The wreck of the Campbeltown could still be seen inside the dry dock months later when RAF photo reconnaissance planes were sent to photograph the port.

The day after the explosion, Organisation Todt workers were assigned to clean up the debris and wreckage. On 30 March at 16:30 the torpedoes from MTB 74, which were on a delayed fuse setting, exploded at the old entrance into the basin. This raised alarms among the Germans. The Organisation Todt workers ran away from the dock area. German guards, mistaking their khaki uniforms for British uniforms, opened fire, killing some of them. The Germans also thought that some Commandos were still hiding in the town, and made a street by street search, during which some townspeople were also killed.

The explosion put the dry dock out of commission until the end of the war. The St Nazaire raid had been a success, but at a cost. Of the 622 men of the Royal Navy and Commandos who took part in the raid, only 228 men returned to England. Five escaped overland via Spain and Gibraltar. 169 men were killed (105 RN and 64 Commandos) and another 215 became prisoners of war (106 RN and 109 Commandos). They were first taken to La Baule and then sent to Stalag 133 at Rennes.

To recognise their achievement, 89 decorations were awarded for the raid. This total includes the five Victoria Crosses awarded to Lieutenant Commander Beattie, Lieutenant Colonel Newman and Commander Ryder, and posthumous awards to Sergeant Durrant and Able Seaman Savage. Other decorations awarded were four Distinguished Service Orders, four Conspicuous Gallantry Medals, five Distinguished Conduct Medals, 17 Distinguished Service Crosses, 11 Military Crosses, 24 Distinguished Service Medals and 15 Military Medals. Four men were awarded the Croix de Guerre by France, another 51 were mentioned in dispatches.

Adolf Hitler was furious that the British had been able to sail a flotilla of ships up the Loire unhindered. His immediate reaction was to dismiss Generaloberst Carl Hilpert, chief-of-staff to the Commander in Chief West. The raid refocused German attention on the Atlantic Wall, and special attention was given to ports to prevent any repeat of the raid. By June 1942 the Germans began using concrete to fortify gun emplacements and bunkers in quantities previously only used in U-boat pens. Hitler laid out new plans in a meeting with Armaments Minister Albert Speer in August 1942, calling for the construction of 15,000 bunkers by May 1943 to defend the Atlantic coast from Norway to Spain.

The battleship Tirpitz never entered the Atlantic. She was bombed and capsized by the RAF in a Norwegian fjord on 12 November 1944 during Operation Catechism

March 28 in History

* 37 – Roman Emperor Caligula accepts the titles of the Principate, entitled to him by the Senate.
* 193 – Roman Emperor Pertinax is assassinated by Praetorian Guards, who then sell the throne in an auction to Didius Julianus.
* 364 – Roman Emperor Valentinian I appoints his brother Flavius Valens co-emperor.
* 845 – Paris is sacked by Viking raiders, probably under Ragnar Lodbrok, who collects a huge ransom in exchange for leaving.
* 1776 – Juan Bautista de Anza finds the site for the Presidio of San Francisco.
* 1794 – Allies under the prince of Coburg defeat French forces at Le Cateau.
* 1795 – Partitions of Poland: The Duchy of Courland, a northern fief of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, ceases to exist and becomes part of Imperial Russia.
* 1802 – Heinrich Wilhelm Matthäus Olbers discovers 2 Pallas, the second asteroid known to man.
* 1809 – Peninsular War: France defeats Spain in the Battle of Medelin.
* 1854 – Crimean War: France and Britain declare war on Russia.
* 1860 – First Taranaki War: The Battle of Waireka begins.
* 1862 – American Civil War: Battle of Glorieta Pass – in New Mexico, Union forces stop the Confederate invasion of New Mexico territory. The battle began on March 26.
* 1871 – The Paris Commune is formally established in Paris.
* 1889 – The Yngsjö murder occurs in Yngsjö, Sweden and Anna Månsdotter is arrested along with her son.
* 1910 – Henri Fabre becomes the first person to fly a seaplane, the Fabre Hydravion, after taking off from a water runway near Martigues, France.
* 1913 – Guatemala becomes a signatory to the Buenos Aires copyright treaty.
* 1920 – Palm Sunday tornado outbreak of 1920 affects the Great Lakes region and Deep South states.
* 1930 – Constantinople and Angora change their names to Istanbul and Ankara.
* 1939 – Spanish Civil War: Generalissimo Francisco Franco conquers Madrid.
* 1941 – World War II: Battle of Cape Matapan – in the Mediterranean Sea, British Admiral Andrew Browne Cunningham leads the Royal Navy in the destruction of three major Italian heavy cruisers and two destroyers.
* 1942 – World War II: In occupied France, British naval forces successfully raid the German-occupied port of St. Nazaire.
* 1946 – Cold War: The United States State Department releases the Acheson–Lilienthal Report, outlining a plan for the international control of nuclear power.
* 1959 – The State Council of the People's Republic of China dissolves the Government of Tibet.
* 1968 – Brazilian high school student Edson Luís de Lima Souto is shot by the police in a protest for cheaper meals at a restaurant for low-income students. The aftermath of his death is one of the first major events against the military dictatorship.
* 1969 – Greek poet and Nobel Prize laureate Giorgos Seferis makes a famous statement on the BBC World Service opposing the junta in Greece.
* 1969 – The McGill français movement protest occurs, the second largest protest in Montreal's history with 10,000 trade unionists, leftist activists, CEGEP students, and even some McGill students at McGill's Roddick Gates. This led to the majority of the protesters getting arrested.
* 1978 – The US Supreme Court hands down 5-3 decision in Stump v. Sparkman, 435 U.S. 349, a controversial case involving involuntary sterilization and judicial immunity.
* 1979 – Operators of Three Mile Island's Unit 2 nuclear reactor outside of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania fail to recognize that a relief valve in the primary coolant system has stuck open following an unexpected shutdown. As a result, enough coolant drains out of the system to allow the core to overheat and partially melt down.
* 1979 – The British House of Commons passes a vote of no confidence against James Callaghan's government, precipitating a general election.
* 1990 – President George H. W. Bush posthumously awards Jesse Owens the Congressional Gold Medal.
* 1994 – In South Africa, Zulus and African National Congress supporters battle in central Johannesburg, resulting in 18 deaths.
* 1994 – BBC Radio 5 is closed and replaced with a new news and sport station BBC Radio 5 Live.
* 1999 – Kosovo War: Serb paramilitary and military forces kill 146 Kosovo Albanians in the Izbica massacre.
* 2000 – Three children are killed when a Murray County, Georgia, school bus is hit by a CSX freight train.
* 2003 – In a friendly fire incident, two A-10 Thunderbolt II attack aircraft from the United States Idaho Air National Guard's 190th Fighter Squadron attack British tanks participating in the 2003 invasion of Iraq, killing British soldier Matty Hull.
* 2005 – The 2005 Sumatra earthquake rocks Indonesia, and at magnitude 8.7 is the fourth strongest earthquake since 1965.
* 2006 – At least 1 million union members, students, and unemployed take to the streets in France in protest at the government's proposed First Employment Contract law.

March 28 Birthdays

* 1472 – Fra Bartolommeo, Italian artist (d. 1517)
* 1515 – Teresa of Avila, Spanish Carmelite nun and saint (d. 1582)
* 1522 – Albert the Warlike, Prince of Bayreuth (d. 1557)
* 1569 – Ranuccio I Farnese, Duke of Parma (d. 1622)
* 1592 – John Amos Comenius, Czech bishop (d. 1670)
* 1599 – Witte Corneliszoon de With, Dutch naval officer (d. 1658)
* 1613 – Empress Xiaozhuangwen of the Qing Dynasty (d. 1688)
* 1621 – Heinrich Schwemmer German music teacher and composer (d. 1696)
* 1652 – Samuel Sewall, American magistrate (d. 1730)
* 1725 – Andrew Kippis, English clergyman and biographer (d. 1795)
* 1750 – Francisco de Miranda, Venezuelan nationalist (d. 1816)
* 1760 – Thomas Clarkson, British abolitionist (d. 1846)
* 1773 – Henri Gratien, Comte Bertrand, French general (d. 1844)
* 1793 – Henry Schoolcraft, American geographer and geologist (d. 1864)
* 1795 – Georg Heinrich Pertz, German historian (d. 1876)
* 1806 – Thomas Hare, English political scientist (d. 1891)
* 1811 – Saint John Nepomucene Neumann, Bohemian-born American bishop and Roman Catholic saint (d. 1860)
* 1815 – Arsène Houssaye, French novelist (d. 1896)
* 1818 – Wade Hampton III, American soldier and politician (d. 1902)
* 1819 – Sir Joseph Bazalgette, English civil engineer (d. 1891)
* 1836 – Frederick Pabst, American brewer (d. 1904)
* 1840 – Emin Pasha, Equatorian politician (d. 1892)
* 1842 – William Harvey Carney, American Civil War officer (d. 1908)
* 1849 – James Darmesteter, French author and antiquarian (d. 1894)
* 1851 – Bernardino Machado, Portuguese politician (d. 1944)
* 1862 – Aristide Briand, French politician, recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize (d. 1932)
* 1866 – Jimmy Ross, Scottish footballer (d. 1902)
* 1868 – Maxim Gorky, Russian author (d. 1936)
* 1871 – Willem Mengelberg, Dutch conductor (d. 1951)
* 1879 – Terence MacSwiney, Irish nationalist (d. 1920)
* 1890 – Paul Whiteman, American bandleader (d. 1967)
* 1892 – Corneille Heymans, Belgian physiologist, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1968)
* 1892 – Tom Maguire, Irish republican (d. 1993)
* 1893 – Spyros Skouras, Greek-born American movie executive (d. 1971)
* 1894 – Ernst Lindemann, German naval officer (d. 1941)
* 1895 – Christian Herter, American politician (d. 1966)
* 1895 – Spencer W. Kimball, American religious leader (d. 1985)
* 1897 – Sepp Herberger, German football coach (d. 1977)
* 1897 – Tillie Voss, American football player (d. 1975)
* 1899 – Harold B. Lee, American religious figure (d. 1973)
* 1899 – August "Gussie" Anheuser Busch, Jr., American brewer and baseball executive (d. 1989)
* 1899 – Buck Shaw, American football coach (d. 1977)
* 1900 – Edward Wagenknecht, American literary critic (d. 2004)
* 1902 – Dame Flora Robson, English actress (d. 1984)
* 1902 – Jaromír Vejvoda, Czech composer (d. 1988)
* 1903 – Rudolf Serkin, Austrian pianist (d. 1991)
* 1903 – Charles Starrett, American actor (d. 1986)
* 1905 – Marlin Perkins, American zoologist and television host (d. 1986)
* 1905 – Pandro S. Berman, American film producer (d. 1996)
* 1907 – Irving "Swifty" Lazar, American talent agent (d. 1993)
* 1907 – Norrey Ford (aka Jill Christian and Christian Walford), British writer (d. 1985)
* 1909 – Nelson Algren, American writer (d. 1981)
* 1910 – Frederick Baldwin Adams, Jr., American librarian (d. 2001)
* 1910 – Jimmie Dodd, American actor (d. 1964)
* 1910 – Queen Ingrid of Denmark (d. 2000)
* 1911 – John Langshaw Austin, British language philosopher (d. 1960)
* 1912 – A. Bertram Chandler Australian author (d. 1984)
* 1912 – Marina Raskova, Russian navigator (d. 1943)
* 1914 – Edward Anhalt, American screenwriter (d. 2000)
* 1914 – Bohumil Hrabal, Czech writer (d. 1997)
* 1914 – Edmund Muskie, American politician (d. 1996)
* 1914 – Kenneth Richard Norris, Australian entomologist (d. 2003)
* 1915 – Jay Livingston, American composer and songwriter (d. 2001)
* 1919 – Vic Raschi, American baseball player (d. 1988)
* 1921 – Walter Neugebauer, Croatian comic book author (d. 1992)
* 1921 – Sir Dirk Bogarde, English actor (d. 1999)
* 1921 – Herschel Grynszpan, German assassin of Ernst vom Rath (year of death unknown)
* 1922 – Neville Bonner, Australian politician (d. 1999)
* 1922 – Felice Chiusano, Italian singer (d. 1990)
* 1922 – Joey Maxim, American boxer (d. 2001)
* 1923 – Thad Jones, American jazz trumpeter (d. 1986)
* 1924 – Freddie Bartholomew, Irish actor (d. 1992)
* 1924 – Byrd Baylor, American author
* 1925 – Dorothy DeBorba, American child actress (d. 2010)
* 1926 – Cayetana Fitz-James Stuart, 18th Duchess of Alba
* 1927 – Marianne Fredriksson, Swedish author (d. 2007)
* 1928 – Zbigniew Brzezinski, Polish-born American political scientist and geostrategist
* 1928 – Alexander Grothendieck, German mathematician
* 1929 – Paul England, Australian racing driver
* 1930 – Robert Ashley, American composer
* 1930 – Elizabeth Bainbridge, English opera singer
* 1930 – Jerome Isaac Friedman, American physicist, Nobel laureate
* 1933 – Tete Montoliu, Catalonian jazz pianist (d. 1997)
* 1933 – Frank Murkowski, American politician
* 1934 – Lester Brown, American environmentalist
* 1935 – Michael Parkinson, English broadcaster
* 1936 – Mario Vargas Llosa, Peruvian author, politician and Nobel laureate
* 1937 – Liz Trotta, American journalist
* 1940 – Tony Barber, Australian television personality
* 1940 – Kevin Loughery, American basketball coach
* 1941 – Alf Clausen, America orchestra conductor
* 1941 – Jim Turner, American pro football player
* 1941 – Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson, American author
* 1942 – Daniel Dennett, American philosopher
* 1942 – Kitanofuji Katsuaki, Japanese sumo wrestler, the 52nd Yokozuna
* 1942 – Neil Kinnock, British politician
* 1942 – Mike Newell, English film director
* 1942 – Samuel Ramey, American opera singer
* 1942 – Conrad Schumann, East German border guard (d. 1998)
* 1942 – Jerry Sloan, American basketball player and head coach
* 1943 – Conchata Ferrell, American actress
* 1944 – Rick Barry, American basketball player
* 1944 – Ken Howard, American actor
* 1945 – Count Björn Hamilton, Swedish politician
* 1946 – Alejandro Toledo, President of Peru
* 1946 – Henry Paulson Jr., American economist
* 1946 – Wubbo Ockels, Dutch physicist and astronaut
* 1947 – John Landecker, American disk jockey
* 1948 – Dianne Wiest, American actress
* 1948 – Gerry House, American radio personality
* 1948 – John Evan, British musician (Jethro Tull)
* 1948 – Milan Williams, American musician (The Commodores) (d. 2006)
* 1948 – Matthew Corbett, English retired actor
* 1948 – Jayne Ann Krentz, American novelist
* 1948 – Dennis Unkovic, American author
* 1950 – Claudio Lolli, Italian singer-songwriter
* 1951 – Karen Kain, Canadian ballerina
* 1951 – Matti Pellonpää, Finnish actor and musician (d. 1995)
* 1952 – Tony Brise, British racing driver (d. 1975)
* 1953 – Melchior Ndadaye, Burundian politician (d. 1993)
* 1954 – Morris Mason, American convicted rapist and murderer (d. 1985)
* 1955 – John Alderdice, Northern Irish politician
* 1955 – Reba McEntire, American singer and actress
* 1956 – Susan Ershler, American mountaineer
* 1956 – April Margera, mother of Bam Margera
* 1957 – Paul Eiding, American voice actor
* 1958 – Curt Hennig, American professional wrestler (d. 2003)
* 1958 – Edesio Alejandro, Cuban music composer
* 1958 – Lou Franceschetti, Canadian ice hockey player
* 1959 – Chris Myers, American sportscaster
* 1960 – Chris Barrie, British actor
* 1960 – José Maria Neves, Cape Verdeian politician
* 1960 – Éric-Emmanuel Schmitt, French author and dramatist
* 1961 – Orla Brady, Irish actress
* 1961 – Byron Scott, American basketball player and coach
* 1962 – Jure Franko, Slovenian skier
* 1962 – Terry Szopinski, American pro-wrestler
* 1965 – Steve Bull, English footballer
* 1967 – John Ziegler, American talk-show host
* 1968 – Iris Chang, American author (d. 2004)
* 1968 – Nasser Hussain, English cricketer
* 1968 – Jon Lee, British drummer (d. 2002)
* 1968 – Tim Lovejoy, British television presenter
* 1968 – Max Perlich, American actor
* 1969 – Brett Ratner, American film director
* 1969 – Rodney Atkins, American country music singer-songwriter
* 1969 – Elliot Perry, American basketball player
* 1970 – Vince Vaughn, American actor
* 1970 – Michelle Gildernew, Irish republican politician
* 1970 – Jennifer Weiner, American author
* 1970 – Aiga Zagorska, Lithuanian track and road cyclist
* 1971 – Christianne Meneses Jacobs, Nicaraguan-born American writer and educator
* 1971 – Mr. Cheeks, American rapper
* 1971 – Wesley Person, American basketball player
* 1972 – Eby J. Jose, Indian journalist
* 1972 – Keith Tkachuk, American ice hockey player
* 1972 – Nick Frost, English comedian and actor
* 1973 – Eddie Fatu, Samoan professional wrestler (d. 2009)
* 1973 – Matt Nathanson, American singer-songwriter
* 1973 – Scott Mills, British radio disc jockey
* 1974 – Mark King, English snooker player
* 1975 – Shanna Moakler, American beauty queen and TV personality
* 1975 – Iván Helguera, Spanish footballer
* 1975 – Matt Reis, American soccer goalkeeper
* 1975 – Richard Kelly, American film director
* 1975 – Derek Hill, American racing driver
* 1975 – Kate Gosselin, American TV personality
* 1976 – Dave Keuning, American guitar player (The Killers)
* 1977 – Erik Rasmussen, American ice hockey player
* 1977 – Lauren Weisberger, American novelist
* 1977 – Annie Wersching, American actress
* 1979 – Park Chae-rim, South Korean actress
* 1979 – Crystal Cox, American reality television contestant
* 1980 – Stiliani Pilatou, Greek long jumper
* 1980 – Luke Walton, American basketball player
* 1980 – Chitrangada Singh, Indian actress
* 1980 – Rasmus Seebach, Danish singer
* 1981 – Lindsay Frimodt, American model
* 1981 – Gareth David-Lloyd, Welsh Actor
* 1981 – Edwar Ramirez, American baseball player
* 1981 – Antonio Rizzo, Italian footballer
* 1981 – Julia Stiles, American actress
* 1982 – Sonia Agarwal, Indian actress
* 1983 – Ryan Ashington, English footballer
* 1984 – Christopher Samba, Congolese footballer
* 1984 – Nikki Sanderson, British actress and model
* 1984 – Yordanos Abay, Ethiopian footballer
* 1984 – Ol Drake, English guitarist (Evile)
* 1985 – Stefano Ferrario, Italian footballer
* 1986 – Abuda, Brazilian footballer
* 1986 – J-Kwon, American rapper
* 1986 – Lady Gaga, American singer-songwriter and dancer
* 1986 – Yoon Joon-Soo, South Korean footballer
* 1986 – Barbora Záhlavová-Strýcová, Czech tennis player
* 1987 – Lee Hea-Kang, South Korean footballer
* 1988 – Patrick Mayer, German footballer
* 1988 – Lacey Turner, British actress
* 1989 – Lukas Jutkiewicz, English footballer
* 1989 – David Goodwillie, Scottish footballer
* 1989 – Mira Leung, Canadian figure skater
* 1989 – Marek Suchý, Czech footballer
* 1990 – Zac Clarke, Australian rules footballer
* 1991 – Amy Bruckner, American actress
* 1992 – Sergi Gómez, Spanish footballer
* 1992 – Liam Hess, British actor

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

March 27, 1814- The Battle of Horseshoe Bend

The Battle of Horseshoe Bend (also known as Tohopeka, Cholocco Litabixbee or The Horseshoe), was fought during the War of 1812 in central Alabama. On March 27, 1814, United States forces and Indian allies under Colonel Andrew Jackson defeated the Red Sticks, a part of the Creek Indian tribe who opposed American expansion, effectively ending the Creek War.

The battle is considered part of the War of 1812. The Creek Indians of Georgia and Alabama had become divided into two factions: the Upper Creeks (or Red Sticks), a majority who opposed the American expansion and sided with the British and Spanish during the War of 1812, and the Lower Creek, who were more assimilated, had a stronger relationship with the US Indian Agent Benjamin Hawkins, and sought to remain on good terms with the Americans.

The Shawnee leader Tecumseh went to Creek and other Southeast Indian towns in 1811–12 to recruit warriors to join his war against American encroachment. The Red Sticks, young men who wanted to revive traditional religious and cultural practices, were already forming, resisting assimilation. They began to raid American frontier settlements. When the Lower Creek helped United States forces capture and punish leading raiders, they were punished by the Red Sticks.

In 1813, militia troops intercepted a Red Stick party returning from obtaining arms in Pensacola. While they were looting the material, the Red Sticks returned and defeated them, at what became known as the Battle of Burnt Corn. Red Sticks raiding of enemy settlements continued, and in August 1813 they attacked Fort Mims in retaliation for the Burnt Corn attack. After that massacre, frontier settlers appealed to the government for help.

As Federal forces were devoted to the War of 1812, Tenneessee, Georgia and Alabama organized militias that were commanded by Colonel Andrew Jackson, together with Lower Creek and Cherokee allies, to go against the Red Sticks. Jackson and his forces won the Battle of Horseshoe Bend in 1814.

Horseshoe Bend was the major battle of the Creek War, in which Andrew Jackson sought to "clear" Alabama for American settlement. Colonel Jackson commanded an army of West Tennessee militia, which he had turned into a well-trained fighting force. Added to the militia units was the 39th United States Infantry and about 600 Cherokee, Choctaw and Lower Creek fighting against the Red Stick Creek.

After leaving Fort Williams in the spring of 1814, Jackson's army cut its way through the forest to within 6 miles (10 km) of Chief Menawa's Red Stick camp of Tohopeka, near a bend in the Tallapoosa River, called "Horseshoe Bend," in central Alabama, 12 miles (19 km) east of what is now Alexander City. Jackson sent General John Coffee with the mounted infantry and the Indian allies south across the river to surround the Red Sticks' camp, while Jackson stayed with the rest of the 2,000 infantry north of the camp.

On March 27 at 10:30 a.m., Jackson began an artillery barrage which consisted of two cannons firing for about two hours. Little damage was caused to the Red Sticks or their fortifications. Coffee's Cherokee and cavalry began crossing the river and fought the Red Sticks on their rear.

Jackson ordered a bayonet charge. The 39th U.S. Infantry, led by Colonel John Williams, charged the breastworks defending the camp and caught the Red Sticks in a cross fire. Sam Houston (the future statesman and politician) served as a third lieutenant in Jackson's army. Houston was one of the first to make it over the log barricade alive and received a wound from a Creek arrow that troubled him the rest of his life.

The battle raged for about five hours. Roughly 550 Red Sticks were killed on the field, while many of the rest were killed trying to cross the river.

Chief Menawa was severely wounded but survived; he led about 200 of the original 1,000 warriors across the river and into safety among the Seminole tribe in Spanish Florida.

Two currently active battalions of the Regular Army (2-7 Inf and 3-7 Inf) perpetuate the lineage of the old 39th Infantry Regiment, which fought at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend.

On August 9, 1814, Andrew Jackson forced the Creek to sign the Treaty of Fort Jackson. The Creek Nation was forced to cede 23 million acres (93,000 km2)—half of central Alabama and part of southern Georgia—to the United States government; this included territory of the Lower Creek, who had been allies of the United States. Jackson had determined the areas from his sense of security needs. Of the 23 million acres (93,000 km2) Jackson forced the Creek to cede 1.9 million acres (7,700 km2), which was claimed by the Cherokee Nation, which had also allied with the United States. Jackson was promoted to Major General after getting agreement to the treaty.

This victory, along with that of the Battle of New Orleans greatly contributed to Jackson's national reputation and his popularity. He was well known when he ran successfully for President of the United States in 1828.

The battlefield is preserved in the Horseshoe Bend National Military Park.

March 27 in History

* 196 BC – Ptolemy V ascends to the throne of Egypt.
* 1306 – Robert the Bruce is crowned King of Scotland at Scone.
* 1309 – Pope Clement V excommunicates Venice and all its population.
* 1329 – Pope John XXII issues his In Agro Dominico condemning some writings of Meister Eckhart as heretical.
* 1613 – The first English child born in Canada at Cuper's Cove, Newfoundland to Nicholas Guy.
* 1625 – Charles I becomes King of England, Scotland and Ireland as well as claiming the title King of France.
* 1782 – Charles Watson-Wentworth, 2nd Marquess of Rockingham becomes Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.
* 1794 – The United States Government establishes a permanent navy and authorizes the building of six frigates.
* 1794 – Denmark and Sweden form a neutrality compact.
* 1809 – Peninsular War: A combined Franco-Polish force defeats the Spanish in the Battle of Ciudad-Real.
* 1814 – War of 1812: In central Alabama, U.S. forces under General Andrew Jackson defeat the Creek at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend.
* 1836 – Texas Revolution: Goliad massacre – Antonio López de Santa Anna orders the Mexican army to kill about 400 Texas POWs at Goliad, Texas.
* 1846 – Mexican-American War: Siege of Fort Texas.
* 1851 – First reported sighting of the Yosemite Valley by Europeans.
* 1854 – Crimean War: The United Kingdom declares war on Russia.
* 1871 – The first international rugby football match, England v. Scotland, is played in Edinburgh at Raeburn Place.
* 1881 – Rioting takes place in Basingstoke in protest against the daily vociferous promotion of rigid Temperance by the Salvation Army.
* 1884 – A mob in Cincinnati, Ohio, US, attacks members of a jury who had returned a verdict of manslaughter in a clear case of murder, and then over the next few days would riot and destroy the courthouse.
* 1886 – Famous Apache warrior, Geronimo, surrenders to the U.S. Army, ending the main phase of the Apache Wars.
* 1890 – A tornado strikes Louisville, Kentucky, killing 76 and injuring 200.
* 1910 – A fire during a barn-dance in Ököritófülpös, Hungary, kills 312.
* 1915 – Typhoid Mary, the first healthy carrier of disease ever identified in the United States, is put in quarantine, where she would remain for the rest of her life.
* 1918 – Moldova and Bessarabia join Romania.
* 1938 – Second Sino-Japanese War: The Battle of Taierzhuang takes place.
* 1941 – World War II: Yugoslavian Air Force officers topple the pro-axis government in a bloodless coup.
* 1943 – World War II: Battle of the Komandorski Islands – In the Aleutian Islands the battle begins when United States Navy forces intercept Japanese attempting to reinforce a garrison at Kiska.
* 1945 – World War II: Operation Starvation, the aerial mining of Japan's ports and waterways begins. Argentina declares war to the Axis Powers.
* 1948 – The Second Congress of the Workers Party of North Korea is convened.
* 1958 – Nikita Khrushchev becomes Premier of the Soviet Union.
* 1963 – Beeching Axe: Dr. Richard Beeching issues a report calling for huge cuts to the United Kingdom's rail network.
* 1964 – The Good Friday Earthquake, the most powerful earthquake in U.S. history at a magnitude of 9.2 strikes South Central Alaska, killing 125 people and inflicting massive damage to the city of Anchorage.
* 1975 – Construction of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System begins.
* 1976 – The first 4.6 miles of the Washington Metro subway system opens.
* 1977 – Tenerife airport disaster: Two Boeing 747 airliners collide on a foggy runway on Tenerife in the Canary Islands, killing 583 (all 248 on KLM and 335 on Pan Am). 61 survived on the Pan Am flight. This is the worst aviation accident in history.
* 1980 – The Norwegian oil platform Alexander L. Kielland collapses in the North Sea, killing 123 of its crew of 212.
* 1980 – Silver Thursday: A steep fall in silver prices, resulting from the Hunt Brothers attempting to corner the market in silver, led to panic on commodity and futures exchanges.
* 1981 – The Solidarity movement in Poland stages a warning strike, in which at least 12 million Poles walk off their jobs for four hours.
* 1986 – A car bomb explodes at Russell Street Police HQ in Melbourne, killing 1 police officer and injuring 21 people.
* 1990 – The United States begins broadcasting TV Martí to Cuba in an effort to bridge the information blackout imposed by the Castro regime.
* 1993 – Jiang Zemin is appointed President of the People's Republic of China.
* 1993 – Italian former minister and Christian Democracy leader Giulio Andreotti is accused of mafia allegiance by the tribunal of Palermo.
* 1994 – One of the biggest tornado outbreaks in recent memory hits the Southeastern United States. One tornado slams into a church in Piedmont, Alabama during Palm Sunday services killing 20 and injuring 90.
* 1994 – The Eurofighter takes its first flight in Manching, Germany.
* 1998 – The Food and Drug Administration approves Viagra for use as a treatment for male impotence, the first pill to be approved for this condition in the United States.
* 2000 – A Phillips Petroleum plant explosion in Pasadena, Texas kills 1 and injures 71.
* 2002 – Passover Massacre: A Palestinian suicide bomber kills 29 people partaking of the Passover meal in Netanya, Israel.
* 2004 – HMS Scylla (F71), a decommissioned Leander class frigate, is sunk as an artificial reef off Cornwall, the first of its kind in Europe.
* 2009 – Situ Gintung, an artificial lake in Indonesia, fails, killing at least 99 people.
* 2009 – A suicide bomber kills at least 48 at a mosque in the Khyber Agency of Pakistan.

March 27 Birthdays

* 972 – King Robert II of France (d. 1031)
* 1416 – Antonio Squarcialupi, Italian composer (d. 1480)
* 1627 – Stephen Fox, English politician (d. 1716)
* 1676 – Francis II Rákóczi, Hungarian nationalist (d. 1735)
* 1696 – Antoine Court, French Huguenot minister (d. 1760)
* 1702 – Johann Ernst Eberlin, German composer (d. 1762)
* 1709 – William Flackton, English bookseller, publisher, amateur organist, viola player and composer (d. 1798)
* 1710 – Joseph Abaco, Belgian violoncellist and composer (d. 1805)
* 1712 – Claude Bourgelat, French veterinary surgeon (d. 1779)
* 1714 – Francesco Antonio Zaccaria, Italian theologian and historian (d. 1795)
* 1730 – Thomas Tyrwhitt, English classical scholar (d. 1786)
* 1746 – Michael Bruce, Scottish poet (d. 1767)
* 1760 – Ishmail Spicer, American composer (d. 1832)
* 1765 – Franz Xaver von Baader, German philosopher and theologian (d. 1841)
* 1784 – Alexander Csoma de Kőrös, Hungarian philologist (d. 1842)
* 1785 – King Louis XVII of France (d. 1795)
* 1797 – Alfred de Vigny, French author (d. 1863)
* 1809 – Baron Georges-Eugène Haussmann, French civic planner (d. 1891)
* 1810 – William Hepworth Thompson, English classical scholar (d. 1886)
* 1813 – Nathaniel Currier, American illustrator (d. 1888)
* 1817 – Karl Wilhelm von Nägeli, Swiss biologist (d. 1891)
* 1845 – Wilhelm Röntgen, German physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1923)
* 1847 – Otto Wallach, German chemist, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1931)
* 1851 – Vincent d'Indy, French composer and teacher (d. 1931)
* 1857 – Karl Pearson, English statistician (d. 1936)
* 1859 – George Giffen, Australian cricketer (d. 1927)
* 1860 – Frank Frost Abbott, American classical scholar (d. 1924)
* 1863 – Sir Henry Royce, English automobile pioneer (d. 1933)
* 1868 – Patty Smith Hill, American educator (d. 1946)
* 1869 – James McNeill, Irish politician (d. 1938)
* 1871 – Piet Aalberse, Dutch politician (d. 1948)
* 1871 – Heinrich Mann, German writer (d. 1950)
* 1879 – Miller Huggins, American baseball player and manager (d. 1929)
* 1883 – Marie Under, Estonian author and poet (d. 1980)
* 1886 – Sergey Kirov, Russian bolshevik leader (d. 1934)
* 1886 – Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, German architect (d. 1969)
* 1888 – Bouke Benenga, Dutch freestyle swimmer and water polo player (d. 1968)
* 1892 – Ferde Grofé, American composer (d. 1972)
* 1892 – Dorrit Weixler, German actress (d. 1916)
* 1893 – Karl Mannheim, Hungarian sociologist (d. 1947)
* 1895 – Betty Schade, German-born American film actress (d. 1982)
* 1898 – Alma Tell, American stage and film actress (d. 1937)
* 1899 – Gloria Swanson, American actress (d. 1983)
* 1897 – Douglas Hartree, English mathematical physicist (d. 1958)
* 1901 – Carl Barks, American illustrator (d. 2000)
* 1901 – Erich Ollenhauer, German politician (d. 1963)
* 1901 – Eisaku Sato, Japanese statesman, recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize (d. 1975)
* 1901 – Kenneth Slessor, Australian poet (d. 1971)
* 1902 – Charles Lang, American cinematographer (d. 1998)
* 1905 – Elsie MacGill, Canadian aeronautical engineer (d. 1980)
* 1906 – Pee Wee Russell, American musician (d. 1969)
* 1909 – Golo Mann, German historian (d. 1994)
* 1909 – Ben Webster, American jazz saxophonist (d. 1973)
* 1912 – James Callaghan, British politician (d. 2005)
* 1913 – Theodor Dannecker, German SS officer (d. 1945)
* 1914 – Richard Denning, American actor (d. 1998)
* 1914 – Budd Schulberg, American screenwriter and novelist (d. 2009)
* 1915 – Robert Lockwood, Jr., American blues guitarist (d. 2006)
* 1917 – Cyrus Vance, American politician (d. 2002)
* 1920 – Robin Jacques, British illustrator (d. 1995)
* 1921 – Harold Nicholas, American dancer (d. 2000)
* 1921 – Fred Foy, American radio and television announcer (d. 2010)
* 1922 – Dick King-Smith English author (d. 2011)
* 1922 – Stefan Wul, French author (d. 2003)
* 1923 – Endo Shusaku, Japanese author (d. 1996)
* 1923 – Louis Simpson, Jamaican-born poet
* 1924 – Sarah Vaughan, American singer (d. 1990)
* 1926 – Frank O'Hara, American Poet (d.1966)
* 1927 – Mstislav Rostropovich, Russian cellist and conductor (d. 2007)
* 1927 – Anthony Lewis, American journalist and writer
* 1930 – Bob den Uyl, Dutch writer (d. 1992)
* 1931 – David Janssen, American actor (d. 1980)
* 1935 – Abelardo Castillo, Argentine writer
* 1935 – Julian Glover, British actor
* 1935 – Stanley Rother, American Catholic priest and missionary (d. 1981)
* 1937 – Thomas Aquinas Daly, American painter
* 1939 – Cale Yarborough, American race car driver
* 1940 – Janis Martin, American singer (d. 2007)
* 1940 – Austin Pendleton, American actor
* 1941 – Ivan Gašparovič, Slovakian politician
* 1942 – John E. Sulston, British chemist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine
* 1942 – Michael York, English actor
* 1942 – Michael Jackson, English writer (d. 2007)
* 1944 – Khosrow Shakibai, Iranian actor (d. 2008)
* 1946 – Olaf Malolepski, German musician (Die Flippers)
* 1947 – Brian Jones, British balloonist
* 1947 – Aad de Mos, Dutch football coach
* 1947 – Walt Mossberg, American journalist
* 1950 – Tony Banks, English musician (Genesis)
* 1950 – Petros Efthimiou, Greek politician
* 1950 – Lynn McGlothen, American baseball player (d. 1984)
* 1952 – Jan Albers, Dutch field hockey player
* 1952 – Maria Schneider, French actress (d. 2011)
* 1952 – Richard Séguin, Quebec singer and songwriter
* 1952 – Dana Stabenow, American author
* 1953 – Herman Ponsteen, Dutch track cyclist
* 1955 – Lefteris Pantazis, Greek singer
* 1956 – Leung Kwok Hung, Hong Kong activist
* 1956 – Thomas Wassberg, Swedish cross-country skier
* 1957 – Nick Hawkins, British politician
* 1957 – Billy Mackenzie, Scottish musician (Associates) (d. 1997)
* 1957 – Kostas Vasilakakis, Greek footballer and football manager
* 1959 – Andrew Farriss, Australian musician (INXS)
* 1960 – Hans Pflügler, German footballer
* 1960 – Renato Russo, Brazilian rock singer-songwriter (d. 1996)
* 1961 – Tak Matsumoto, Japanese guitarist (B'z)
* 1961 – Tony Rominger, Swiss cyclist
* 1962 – Jann Arden, Canadian musician
* 1962 – Rob Hollink, Dutch professional poker player
* 1962 – John O'Farrell, British author and satirist
* 1963 – Charly Alberti, Argentinian musician
* 1963 – Randall Cunningham, American football player
* 1963 – Dave Koz, American saxophonist
* 1963 – Quentin Tarantino, American director, writer, and producer
* 1963 – Xuxa, Brazilian television personality
* 1964 – Glenn Carter, English actor and singer-songwriter
* 1966 – Paula Trickey, American actress
* 1966 – Haruto Umezawa, Japanese manga artist
* 1967 – David Bavaro, American football player
* 1967 – Talisa Soto, American actress
* 1967 – Kenta Kobashi, Japanese professional wrestler
* 1968 – Sandra Hess, Swiss-born actress and model
* 1969 – Mariah Carey, American pop singer
* 1969 – Kevin Corrigan, American actor
* 1969 – Pauley Perrette, American actress, photographer, poet, writer
* 1969 – Victoria O'Keefe, British actress (d. 1990)
* 1970 – Kathalijne Buitenweg, Dutch politician
* 1970 – Brent Fitz, Canadian musician (Theory of a Deadman)
* 1970 – Brendan Hill, British drummer (Blues Traveler)
* 1970 – Princess Leila of Iran (d. 2001)
* 1970 – Elizabeth Mitchell, American actress
* 1970 – Uwe Rosenberg, German board game designer (Agricola, Bohnanza)
* 1971 – David Coulthard, Scottish Formula One driver
* 1971 – Nathan Fillion, Canadian actor
* 1972 – Charlie Haas, American professional wrestler
* 1972 – Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, Dutch footballer
* 1974 – Russ Haas, wrestler (d. 2001)
* 1974 – George Koumantarakis, Greek-South African footballer
* 1974 – Gaizka Mendieta, Spanish footballer
* 1975 – Fergie, American pop singer (The Black Eyed Peas)
* 1975 – Tom Goegebuer, Belgian weightlifter
* 1975 – Chakrit Yamnam, Thai film and television actor
* 1976 – Djamel Belmadi, Algerian footballer
* 1976 – Danny Fortson, American basketball player
* 1976 – Carl Ng, Hong Kong/British actor and model
* 1977 – Adrian Anca, Romanian footballer
* 1977 – Vitor Meira, Brazilian racing driver
* 1979 – Michael Cuddyer, American baseball player
* 1980 – Cesare Cremonini, Italian singer and songwriter
* 1981 – Carey Davis, American pro football player
* 1981 – Lin Jun Jie, Chinese singer
* 1981 – Terry McFlynn, Northern Irish footballer
* 1982 – Kurara Chibana, Japanese beauty pageant contestant
* 1982 – Iman Crosson, American actor, impressionist, and dancer
* 1983 – Yunus İçuz, Turkish footballer
* 1984 – Michaël Cordier, Belgian footballer
* 1984 – Laura Critchley, British singer/song writer
* 1984 – Ben Franks, New Zealander rugby player
* 1985 – Dario Baldauf, Austrian footballer
* 1985 – Stijn De Smet, Belgian footballer
* 1985 – Caroline Winberg, Swedish supermodel
* 1986 – Melissa Stern (Baby M), American custody case figure
* 1986 – SoCal Val, American professional wrestling valet
* 1986 – Manuel Neuer, German professional footballer
* 1986 – George Whitelock, New Zealand rugby player
* 1987 – Cláudio, Brazilian footballer
* 1987 – Chad Denny, Canadian ice hockey player
* 1987 – Buster Posey, American baseball player
* 1987 – Victor Vito, New Zealand rugby player
* 1988 – Brenda Song, American actress
* 1988 – Jessie J, British singer
* 1990 – Alessio Bugno, Italian footballer
* 1990 – Nicolas N'Koulou, Cameroonian footballer
* 1990 – Scott Selwood, Australian rules footballer
* 1992 – Pedro Obiang, Spanish-born Equatoguinean footballer
* 1995 – Taylor Atelian, American actress