March 31


1870 – In Perth Amboy, NJ, Thomas Munday Peterson became the first black to vote in the United States.

1880 – Wabash, IN, became the first town to be completely illuminated with electric light.

1885 – Binney & Smith Company was founded in New York, NY. The company later became Crayola, LLC.

1889 – In Paris, the Eiffel Tower officially opened.

1900 – The W.E. Roach Company was the first automobile company to put an advertisement in a national magazine. The magazine was the “Saturday Evening Post”.

1906 – The Intercollegiate Athletic Association of the United States was founded to set rules in amateur sports. The organization became the National Collegiate Athletic Association in 1910.

1909 – Construction of the RMS Titanic began.

1917 – The U.S. purchased and took possession of the Virgin Islands from Denmark for $25 million.

1918 – For the first time in the U.S., Daylight Saving Time went into effect.

1923 – In New York, NY, the first U.S. dance marathon was held. Alma Cummings set a new world record for dancing 27 hours.

1932 – The Ford Motor Co. debuted its V-8 engine.

1933 – The U.S. Congress authorized the Civilian Conservation Corps to relieve rampant unemployment.

1933 – The “Soperton News” in Georgia became the first newspaper to publish using a pine pulp paper.

1940 – La Guardia airport in New York, NY, officially opened to the public.

1951 – Remington Rand delivered the first UNIVAC I computer to the United States Census Bureau.

1958 – The U.S. Navy formed the atomic submarine division.

1970 – A Wisconsin group, led by automobile dealer Bud Selig, purchased the bankrupt Seattle Pilots baseball team and moves it to Milwaukee barely in time for the start of the regular season.

1972 – Major League Baseball players went on strike with four days left in spring training, refusing to play exhibition games due to a dispute over pensions. (The walkout would extend into the first week of the season, with most teams losing a half dozen games.)

1976 – The New Jersey Supreme Court ruled that Karen Anne Quinlan could be disconnected from a respirator. Quinlan remained comatose until 1985 when she died.

1980 – President Jimmy Carter deregulated the banking industry.

1985 – The 200th episode of “The Love Boat” aired on ABC.

1985 – The first WrestleMania, the biggest wrestling event ever from the WWE (then the WWF) took place in Madison Square Garden in New York, NY.

1987 – HBO (Home Box Office) earned its first Oscar for “Down and Out in America”.

1992 – The USS Missouri, the last active U.S. Navy battleship, was decommissioned in Long Beach, CA.

1994 – “Nature” magazine announced that a complete skull of Australppithecus afarensis had been found in Ethiopia. The finding is of humankind’s earliest ancestor.

1998 – Buddy Hackett received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

1998 – For the first time in U.S. history the federal government’s detailed financial statement was released. This occurred under the Bill Clinton administration.

1999 – Model Fabio is hit in the face by a bird, suffering an inch-long cut, during a promotional ride of a rollercoaster at Busch Gardens theme park in Williamsburg, VA.

1999 – The game Rollercoaster Tycoon was released for computers.

2000 – The movie “High Fidelity”, starring John Cusack as a record store owner, opened in theaters. The cast included Bruce Springsteen (playing himself in
his film acting debut) and Tenacious D’s Jack Black.

2004 – Air America Radio launched five stations around the U.S.

2004 – Google Inc. announced that it would be introducing a free e-mail service called Gmail.

2004 – In Fallujah, Iraq, four American private military contractors, working for Blackwater USA, were killed after being ambushed.

2005 – Terri Schiavo, 41, dies two weeks after doctors remove her feeding tube in response to a court ruling. She had been in a vegetative state since 1990. Her case provoked fierce wrangling in the United States and raised fundamental legal, ethical and scientific questions.

2016 – Apple released the iPhone SE.



William Daniels 1927 – Actor (TV’s “St. Elsewhere,” voice of KITT on “Knight Rider”)

John Jakes 1932 – Author (“California,” “In the Big Country”)

Richard Chamberlain 1934 – Actor (“The Bourne Identity”, TV’s “Doctor Kildare”, “Shogun”, “The Thorn Birds”, “Wallenberg”)

Shirley Jones 1934 – Singer, Actress (TV’s “The Partridge Family”, movie “Elmer Gantry”)

Nathaniel Taylor 1938 – Actor (Played Rollo on TV’s “Sanford and Son”, “What’s Happening!!!”)

Herb Alpert 1935 – Musician

Christopher Walken 1943 – Actor (“The Deerhunter,” “Pulp Fiction”, “Catch Me If You Can”, “Seven Psychopaths”, “Wedding Crashers”, “Man on Fire”, “Hairspray”, “The Prophecy”, “King of New York”)

Mick Ralphs 1944 – Musician (Bad Company, Mott the Hoople)

Gabe Kaplan 1945 – Actor, comedian, professional poker player (TV’s “Welcome Back Kotter”)

Al Gore 1948 – Vice President under President Bill Clinton

Rhea Perlman 1948 – Actress (TV’s “Cheers”)

Ed Marinaro 1950 – Football player, actor (TV’s “Hill Street Blues”)

Angus Young 1955 – Guitar player (AC/DC)

Marc McClure 1957 – Actor (“Freak Friday”)

William McNamara 1965 – Actor (“Texasville”, “Stella”, “Copycat”, “Surviving the Game”, “Stealing Home”)

Ewan McGregor 1971 – Actor (“Star Wars” movie series, “Moulin Rouge”, “Trainspotting”, “Down With Love”, “Velvet Goldmine”, “Black Hawk Down”, “The Ghost Writer”, “The Impossible”)

Jessica Szohr 1985 – Actress (TV’s “Gossip Girl”)



Bunsen Burner Day

Crayola Crayon Day

Eiffel Tower Day

World Backup Day


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