Today in History
Published 8:43 am Wednesday, March 17, 2021
By The Associated Press
Today is Wednesday, March 17, the 76th day of 2021. There are 289 days left in the year. This is St. Patrick’s Day.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On March 17, 1762, New York held its first St. Patrick’s Day parade.
On this date:
In 1776, the Revolutionary War Siege of Boston ended as British forces evacuated the city.
In 1936, Pittsburgh’s Great St. Patrick’s Day Flood began as the Monongahela and Allegheny rivers and their tributaries, swollen by rain and melted snow, started exceeding flood stage; the high water was blamed for more than 60 deaths.
In 1941, the National Gallery of Art opened in Washington, D.C.
In 1959, the Dalai Lama fled Tibet for India in the wake of a failed uprising by Tibetans against Chinese rule.
In 1966, a U.S. Navy midget submarine located a missing hydrogen bomb that had fallen from a U.S. Air Force B-52 bomber into the Mediterranean off Spain. (It took several more weeks to actually recover the bomb.)
In 1969, Golda Meir became prime minister of Israel.
In 1970, the United States cast its first veto in the U.N. Security Council, killing a resolution that would have condemned Britain for failing to use force to overthrow the white-ruled government of Rhodesia.
In 1988, Avianca Flight 410, a Boeing 727, crashed after takeoff into a mountain in Colombia, killing all 143 people on board.
In 1992, 29 people were killed in the truck bombing of the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina. In Illinois, Sen. Alan Dixon was defeated in his primary reelection bid by Carol Moseley-Braun, who went on to become the first Black woman in the U.S. Senate.
In 2003, edging to the brink of war, President George W. Bush gave Saddam Hussein 48 hours to leave his country. Iraq rejected Bush’s ultimatum, saying that a U.S. attack to force Saddam from power would be “a grave mistake.”
In 2009, U.S. journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee were detained by North Korea while reporting on North Korean refugees living across the border in China. (Both were convicted of entering North Korea illegally and were sentenced to 12 years of hard labor; both were freed in August 2009 after former President Bill Clinton met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Il.) The Seattle Post-Intelligencer published its final print edition.
In 2010, Michael Jordan became the first ex-player to become a majority owner in the NBA as the league’s Board of Governors unanimously approved Jordan’s $275 million bid to buy the Charlotte Bobcats from Bob Johnson.
Ten years ago: The U.N. Security Council paved the way for international air strikes against Moammar Gadhafi’s forces, voting to authorize military action to protect civilians and impose a no-fly zone over Libya. U.S. drone missiles hit a village in Pakistan; U.S. officials said the group targeted was heavily armed and that some of its members were connected to al-Qaida, but Pakistani officials said the missiles hit a community meeting, killing four Taliban fighters and 38 civilians and tribal police. Country music entertainer Ferlin Husky, 85, died in Westmoreland, Tenn.
Five years ago: The Obama administration formally concluded the Islamic State group was committing genocide against Christians and other minorities in Iraq and Syria. An Arizona man was convicted of a terror charge tied to an attack on a Prophet Muhammad cartoon contest in Texas, marking the second conviction in the U.S. related to the Islamic State group; Abdul Malik Abdul Kareem, an American-born Muslim convert, was later sentenced to 30 years in prison. Finally bowing to years of public pressure, SeaWorld Entertainment said it would no longer breed killer whales or make them perform crowd-pleasing tricks.
One year ago: A three-week shelter-in-place order took effect in six San Francisco-area counties, requiring most residents to stay inside and venture out only for food, medicine or exercise. State TV in Iran warned that “millions” could die if Iranians kept traveling and ignored health guidance; the coronavirus death toll in Iran neared 1,000. More movie theaters closed nationwide; the nation’s largest chain, AMC, said its theaters would close for at least six to 12 weeks. Bus riders in Detroit were stranded after most drivers didn’t report to work. The Kentucky Derby and the French Open were each postponed from May to September. A case of the coronavirus was reported in West Virginia, the only U.S. state that hadn’t seen one until that point. As Florida, Arizona and Illinois went ahead with presidential primaries, hundreds of poll workers dropped out, forcing state officials to scramble. Joe Biden swept to primary victories, increasingly pulling away in the Democratic race.
Today’s Birthdays: The former national chairwoman of the NAACP, Myrlie Evers-Williams, is 88. Former astronaut Ken Mattingly is 85. Singer-songwriter John Sebastian (The Lovin’ Spoonful) is 77. Former NSA Director and former CIA Director Michael Hayden is 76. Rock musician Harold Brown (War; Lowrider Band) is 75. Actor Patrick Duffy is 72. Actor Kurt Russell is 70. Country singer Susie Allanson is 69. Actor Lesley-Anne Down is 67. Actor Mark Boone Jr. is 66. Country singer Paul Overstreet is 66. Actor Gary Sinise is 66. Actor Christian Clemenson is 63. Former basketball and baseball player Danny Ainge is 62. Actor Arye Gross is 61. Actor Vicki Lewis is 61. Actor Casey Siemaszko is 60. Writer-director Rob Sitch is 59. Actor Rob Lowe is 57. Rock singer Billy Corgan is 54. Rock musician Van Conner (Screaming Trees) is 54. Actor Mathew St. Patrick is 53. Actor Yanic Truesdale is 52. Rock musician Melissa Auf der Maur is 49. Olympic gold medal soccer player Mia Hamm is 49. Rock musician Caroline Corr (The Corrs) is 48. Actor Amelia Heinle is 48. Country singer Keifer Thompson (Thompson Square) is 48. Actor Marisa Coughlan is 47. Actor Natalie Zea (zee) is 46. Sports reporter Tracy Wolfson is 46. Actor Brittany Daniel is 45. Singer and TV personality Tamar Braxton is 44. Country musician Geoff Sprung (Old Dominion) is 43. Reggaeton singer Nicky Jam is 40. TV personality Rob Kardashian (TV: “Keeping Up With the Kardashians”) is 34. Pop/rock singer-songwriter Hozier is 31. Actor Eliza Hope Bennett is 29. Actor John Boyega is 29. Olympic gold medal swimmer Katie Ledecky is 24. Actor Flynn Morrison is 16.