On This Day in History for March 31

Events in History

Events 1 - 100 of 147

  • 1084 Anti-pope Clemens crowns German King Hendrik IV as Holy Roman Emperor
  • 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 and King Ferdinand of Aragon issue the Alhambra Decree which expels Jews from their Kingdoms of Castile and Aragon
  • 1504 France & Spain sign ceasefire

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1521 Portuguese navigator Ferdinand Magellan takes possession of Homohon, Archipelago of St Lazarus, Philippines

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1547 Henry II succeeds Francois I as king of France

King of France Henry II
King of France
Henry II
  • 1644 Pope Urbanus VIII & duke of Parma signs Peace of Ferrara
  • 1651 Great earthquake at Cuzco Peru

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1657 English Parliament makes the Humble Petition to Lord Protector Oliver Cromwell offering him the crown: he declines

English Military and Political Leader Oliver Cromwell
English Military and Political Leader
Oliver Cromwell
  • 1667 France & England sign anti-Dutch military accord
  • 1683 Emperor Leopold I/Poland signs covenant against Turkey
  • 1717 A sermon on "The Nature of the Kingdom of Christ" by Benjamin Hoadly, the Bishop of Bangor, provoked the Bangorian Controversy.
  • 1745 Jews are expelled from Prague

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1796 Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's "Egmont" premieres in Weimar

Social Philosopher Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Social Philosopher
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
  • 1808 French created Kingdom of Westphalia orders Jews to adopt family names

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1814 Forces allied against Napoleon capture Paris

French Emperor Napoléon Bonaparte
French Emperor
Napoléon Bonaparte
  • 1822 The massacre of the population of the Greek island of Chios by soldiers of the Ottoman Empire following a rebellion attempt, depicted by the French artist Eugène Delacroix.
  • 1831 Mainzer Rijnvaart Convention ends
  • 1831 Quebec & Montreal incorporated
  • 1849 Col John W Geary arrives as 1st postmaster of SF
  • 1850 US population hits 23,191,876 (Black population: 3,638,808 (15.7%))
  • 1854 Treaty of Kanagawa: Commodore Perry forces Japan to opens ports to US
  • 1861 Confederacy takes over mint at New Orleans (US Civil War)
  • 1862 Civil War action at Island #10 on Mississippi River
  • 1863 Battle of Grand Gulf MS & Dinwiddie Court House VA
  • 1865 Battle of Boydton, VA (White Oaks Roads, Dinwiddie C H)
  • 1865 Gen Pickette moves to 5 Forks, abandoning the defense of Peterburg
  • 1866 The Spanish Navy bombs the harbor of Valparaíso, Chile.
  • 1868 Chinese Embassy arrives aboard steamship China
  • 1870 1st black to vote in US (Thomas P Mundy of Perth Amboy NJ)
  • 1877 British high director/governor sir Bartle Frere arrives in Capetown
  • 1877 The family with samurai antecedents who responded to the Saigo army in Ōita Nakatsu rebels.
  • 1880 1st town completely illuminated by electric lighting (Wabash, IN)
  • 1883 1st performance of Caesar Franck's "Le Chasseur Maudit"
  • 1883 Utrecht begins water pipe system
  • 1885 Great Britain declares Bechuanaland a protectorate

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1889 Eiffel Tower officially opens in Paris. Built for the Exposition Universelle, at 300m high it retains the record for the tallest man made structure for 41 years.

Engineer and Achitect Gustave Eiffel
Engineer and Achitect
Gustave Eiffel
  • 1900 At " Surprise of Sanna’s Post" in the Second Boer War 150 troops under Brigadier General Robert Broadwood were killed.
  • 1903 Richard Pearse flies monoplane several hundred yards (NZ)

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1905 Emperor Wilhelm II of Germany visits Tangier, Morocco and proclaims Germany's support of Moroccan independence and equal opportunity for all powers to trade there

German Emperor and King of Prussia Wilhelm II
German Emperor and King of Prussia
Wilhelm II
  • 1906 GB Shaw's German version of "Caesar & Cleopatra" premieres in Berlin
  • 1907 Romanian Army puts down Moldavian farmers' revolt
  • 1909 Gustav Mahler conducts NY Philharmonic for his 1st time
  • 1909 In a diplomatic note to Austria, Serbia recognizes the Bosnian annexation and promises to maintain friendly relations with Austria
  • 1916 Dutch government ends all military engagements
  • 1917 US purchases Danish West Indies for $25M & renames them Virgin Islands
  • 1918 1st daylight savings time in US goes into effect
  • 1919 Strike against Ruhrgebied government of Scheidemann
  • 1920 British parliament accepts Irish Home Rule law
  • 1921 British coal miners goes on strike
  • 1922 KFI-AM in Los Angeles CA begins radio transmissions
  • 1922 Prince Hendrik opens trade fair building in Amsterdam
  • 1923 French soldiers fire on workers at Krupp factory in Essen; 13 die
  • 1924 Croydon Airport, London: Imperial Airways established
  • 1924 London public transport strike ends
  • 1925 WOWO-AM, Ft Wayne Indiana begins radio transmission (500 watts)
  • 1926 German Special Court of Justice for state security disbands
  • 1932 150 wild swans die in Niagara waterfall
  • 1932 Ford publicly unveils its V-8 engine
  • 1933 1st newspaper published on pine pulp paper, "Soperton News" (Ga)
  • 1933 Congress authorizes Civilian Conservation Corps

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1933 German Republic gives power to Hitler

Dictator of Nazi Germany Adolf Hitler
Dictator of Nazi Germany
Adolf Hitler
  • 1934 Netherlands Indies BC Ltd begins radio transmission (Indonesia)
  • 1939 Britain & France agree to support Poland if invaded by Germany
  • 1940 Karelo-Finnish SSR becomes 12th Soviet republic (until 1956)
  • 1941 Ground broken for Union Square Garage, SF
  • 1943 Rodgers & Hammerstein's "Oklahoma!" premieres in NYC
  • 1943 US errantly bombs Rotterdam, kills 326
  • 1944 Hungary orders all Jews to wear yellow stars
  • 1945 3rd Algerian division crosses the Rhine
  • 1945 Sicherheitsdienst murders 10 political prisoners in Zutphen

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1945 Tennessee Williams' "Glass Menagerie" premieres in NYC

Playwright Tennessee Williams
Playwright
Tennessee Williams
  • 1945 US artillery lands on Keise Shima/begins firing on Okinawa
  • 1946 Belgian government of Spaak resigns - shortest ever Belgian government
  • 1946 Belgian government of Acker forms
  • 1946 The first election is held in Greece after World War II.
  • 1948 Congress passes Marshall Aid Act to rehabilitate war-torn Europe
  • 1949 Newfoundland becomes Canada's 10th province
  • 1951 US tanks exceed 38° of latitude in Korea
  • 1953 US Department of Health, Education & Welfare established
  • 1953 UN Security Council nominates Dag Hammarskjöld for Secretary-General
  • 1954 USSR offers to join NATO
  • 1955 US Assay Office in Seattle, Washington closes Chase National (3rd largest bank) & Bank of the Manhattan Company (15th largest bank) merge to form Chase Manhattan
  • 1958 US Navy forms atomic sub division
  • 1958 USSR suspends nuclear weapons tests, & urges US & Britain to do same
  • 1960 Gore Vidal's "Best Man" premieres in NYC
  • 1961 Aklilou Habtewold becomes 1st premier of Ethiopia
  • 1963 LA ends streetcar service after 90 years
  • 1964 Pres Jango Goulart of Brazil chased out of office by military
  • 1965 US orders first combat troops to Vietnam
  • 1965 Iberia Airlines Convair 440 crashes into the sea on approach to Tangier killing 47 of 51 occupants.
  • 1966 25,000 anti war demonstrators march in NYC

Electoral defeatElection of Interest

1966 Labour Party under Harold Wilson win British parliamentary election

British Prime Minister Harold Wilson
British Prime Minister
Harold Wilson
  • 1966 USSR launches Luna 10, 1st lunar orbiter

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1968 LBJ announces he will not seek re-election

36th US President Lyndon B. Johnson
36th US President
Lyndon B. Johnson
  • 1968 Pirate Radio Station Pegaus (NZ) begins transmitting
  • 1968 Seattle's AL club is named Pilots
  • 1970 Federal bankruptcy court allows Seattle Pilots to be sold to Milwaukee
  • 1970 Explorer 1 re-enters the Earth's atmosphere after 12 years in orbit
  • 1970 Following an Orange Order parade, intense riots erupt on the Springfield Road in Belfast; violence lasts for three days, and the British Army used CS gas for the first time in large quantities

Birthdays in History

  • 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 Pius IV, [Gianangelo de' Medici], Italian lawyer/pope (1559-65)
  • 1504 Guru Angad Dev, second Sikh guru (d. 1552)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1519 Henry II, King of France (1547-59), born in Château de Saint-Germain-en-Laye near Paris (d. 1559)

King of France Henry II
King of France
Henry II
  • 1536 Ashikaga Yoshiteru, Japanese shogun (d. 1565)
  • 1576 Louise Juliana of Nassau, Regent of Bohemia (d. 1644)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1596 René Descartes, French philosopher (he thought, therefore he was), born in Descartes, Indre-et-Loire, France (d. 1650)

Philosopher René Descartes
Philosopher
René Descartes
  • 1621 Andrew Marvell, England, poet (To His Coy Mistress)
  • 1651 Karl II, Elector Palatine (d. 1685)
  • 1675 Benedict XIV, [Prospero L Lambertini], Italy, Pope (1740-58)
  • 1718 Marianne Victoria of Borbón, queen regent of Portugal (d. 1781)
  • 1723 Frederik V, King of Denmark/Norway (1746-66)
  • 1730 Étienne Bézout, French mathematician (d. 1783)
  • 1777 Charles Cagniard de la Tour, French physicist (d. 1859)
  • 1778 Coenraad Jacob Temminck, Dutch zoologist (d. 1858)
  • 1794 Thompson McKennan, American politician who served as the 2nd United States Secretary of the Interior (d. 1852)
  • 1809 Edward FitzGerald, England, writer (Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam)
  • 1811 Robert Wilhelm Eberhard von Bunsen, Germany, chemist (Bunsen Burner)
  • 1819 Prince Chlodwig zu Hohenlohe-Schillingsfürst, Chancellor of Germany (d. 1901)
  • 1831 Archibald Scott, Scottish chemist
  • 1835 John La Farge, US painter
  • 1837 Robert Ross McBurney, 1st paid secretary of the YMCA
  • 1837 Stephen Dodson Ramseur, Major General (Confederate Army), (d. 1864)
  • 1838 Leon Dierx, French poet
  • 1839 Nikolay Przhevalsky, naturalist, explorer of east central Asia (OS)
  • 1840 John Herbert Kelly, Brigadier General (Confederate Army), (d. 1864)
  • 1840 Benjamin Baker, Frome Somerset, English Engineer who designed the bridge over the Firth of Forth, Scotland and the London underground
  • 1844 Andrew Lang, Scotland, author (The Blue Fairy Book)
  • 1847 Yegor Ivanovich Zolotarev, Russian mathematician (d. 1878)
  • 1854 Dugald Clerk, inventor (2-stroke motorcycle engine)
  • 1855 Alfred E. Hunt, founder of Alcoa (d. 1899)
  • 1860 Isidor Traube, Hildesheim Hanover, German Chemist (founded capillary chemistry, research on liquids)
  • 1868 Karl Bonhoeffer, German psychiatrist/neurologist
  • 1871 Arthur Griffith, President of Ireland (d. 1922)
  • 1876 Borisav "Bora" Stanković, Serbian writer (d. 1927)
  • 1884 Adriaan van Maanen, Dutch-American astronomer (d. 1946)
  • 1885 Jules Pascin, [Julius Pincas], Bulgarian/US painter/cartoonist
  • 1890 William Lawrence Bragg, English physicist, Nobel laureate (d. 1971)
  • 1891 Ion Pillat, Romaniams poet/senator (Umbra timpului)
  • 1892 Stanislav Wladyslaw Maczek, Polish/British general-major/commandant
  • 1895 John Jay McCloy, lawyer/banker (Sec of War 1941-45, pres Chase Man)
  • 1895 Vardis A Fisher, US author (Darkness & Deep)
  • 1900 Henry WFA, English duke of Gloucester/earl of Ulters
  • 1909 Pieter Jongeling, Dutch MP (GVP)/editor (Neth Daily)
  • 1909 Robert Brasillach, French author/nazi collaborator
  • 1912 Wilhelmus Berkelmans, civil servant/resistance fighter
  • 1914 Octavio Paz, Mexico, writer/diplomat (Salamandra, Topoemas)
  • 1915 Jack Perry, businessman
  • 1915 Shoichi Yokoi, Japanese military man (d. 1997)
  • 1916 John H. Wood, Jr., American federal judge (d. 1979)
  • 1918 Ted Post, Dir (Peacemaker, Beneath the Planet of the Apes)
  • 1920 Marga [Sara Voeten-] Minco, Dutch writer (Bitter Herb)
  • 1920 Deborah_Cavendish,_Duchess_of_Devonshire, English Duchess, now Dowager Duchess
  • 1924 Harry Cubitt, 4th Lord Ashcombe ("Mad Harry"), English landowner
  • 1924 Leo Buscaglia, "Dr Hug", psycholigist (Love), born in Los Angeles, California
  • 1926 John Fowles, English novelist (Collector, French Leiutenent's Woman)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1927 Cesar Chavez, American farm labor leader (United Farm Workers), born in Yuma, Arizona (d. 1993)

Farm Labor Leader Cesar Chavez
Farm Labor Leader
Cesar Chavez

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1929 Liz Claiborne, American fashion designer, entrepreneur and founder of Liz Claiborne Inc, born in Brussels, Belgium (d. 2007)

Fashion Designer Liz Claiborne
Fashion Designer
Liz Claiborne
  • 1929 Bertram Fields, American lawyer
  • 1932 John Jakes, writer (Sir Scoundrel, Great Women Reporters), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1932 Nagisa Oshima, director (Town of Love & Hope), born in Kyoto, Japan (d. 2013)
  • 1933 Nichita Stănescu, Romanian poet (d. 1983)
  • 1934 Grigori Grigoyevich Nelyubov, Russia, cosmonaut (Vostok 1 backup)
  • 1934 Wim H Sinnige, Dutch alderman of finance (social democratic)
  • 1935 Judith Rossner, US, writer (August)
  • 1936 Marge Piercy, author (Small Changes, Gone for Soldiers)
  • 1938 Sheila Dikshit, Chief Minister of Delhi
  • 1938 David Steel, Scottish politician
  • 1939 Zviad Gamsakhurdia, first President of Georgia (d. 1993)
  • 1940 Barney Frank, (Rep-D-MA, 1981- )
  • 1940 Patrick J Leahy, (Sen-D-VT, 1975- )
  • 1942 Michael Savage, American talk radio host and commentator
  • 1942 Ulla Hoffmann, Swedish politician
  • 1947 Caesar Gaviria Trujillo, president (Colombia, 1990-94)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1948 Al Gore, American Vice President (1993-2001) and Democratic Senator (Tenn, 1985-92), born in Washington, D.C.

US Vice President Al Gore
US Vice President
Al Gore
  • 1948 David Eisenhower, author and grandson of President Eisenhower (married Julie Nixon), born in West Point, New York
  • 1950 Alison McCartney, pathologist/Breast Cancer campaigner
  • 1957 Patrick G Forrester, Army Lt Colonel and astronaut, born in El Paso, Texas
  • 1964 Isabelle Ferrari, Italy, (Italy's Miss Teenager)
  • 1965 Jean-Christophe Lafaille, French mountaineer (d. 2006)
  • 1969 Nyamko Sabuni, Swedish politician
  • 1987 "Baby M" born to a surrogate mother, awarded to her dad William Stern
  • 1987 Humpy Koneru, Indian chess grandmaster

Weddings in History


HeartWedding of Interest

307 Roman Emperor Constantine marries Fausta, daughter of the Emperor Maximian, later murdering her in 326

Roman Emperor Constantine the Great
Roman Emperor
Constantine the Great

HeartWedding of Interest

1834 Religious leader Brigham Young (32) weds herbalist Mary Ann Angell (27)

Founder of Salt Lake City and President of the LDS Church Brigham Young
Founder of Salt Lake City and President of the LDS Church
Brigham Young

Deaths in History

  • 1074 Regency Yorimichi Fujiwara of Japan (b. 992)
  • 1340 Ivan I of Moscow, Prince of Moscow and Grand Prince of Vladimir (b. 1288)
  • 1389 Everhard Tserclaes, sheriff of Brussels, murdered

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1547 King Francis I of France (1515-47), dies complaining about the weight of the crown at 52

  • 1567 Philip, the Generous, count of Hessen, dies at 62
  • 1578 Juan de Escobedo, sec of Spanish land guardian Don Juan, murdered
  • 1621 Philip III, King of Spain (1598-1621), dies at 42
  • 1631 John Donne, Metaphysical poet, dies (birth date unknown)
  • 1671 Anne Hyde, wife of James II of England (b. 1637)
  • 1722 Campegius Vitringa, Dutch theologist/exegete, dies at 62
  • 1723 Edward Hyde, 3rd Earl of Clarendon, British-born American statesman (b. 1661)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1727 Isaac Newton, English physicist/astronomer, dies in London at 84

Physicist & Mathematician Isaac Newton
Physicist & Mathematician
Isaac Newton
  • 1741 Pieter Burmann/Burman the Elder, Dutch classical scholar dies at 72
  • 1837 John Constable, English painter/water colors painter, dies at 60

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1850 John C. Calhoun, American politician, dies of tuberculosis at 68

Politician John C. Calhoun
Politician
John C. Calhoun

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1855 Charlotte Brontë, English novelist (Jane Eyre), dies at 38

  • 1877 Antoine A Cournot, French mathematician (rule of C), dies at 75
  • 1884 Jan T Beelen, Neth/Belgian catholic bible expert, dies at 77
  • 1898 Edward Noyes Westcott, US attorney/writer (David Harum), dies
  • 1913 John Pierpont Morgan, US banker/CEO (US Steel Corp), dies at 75
  • 1914 Ch Morgenstern, writer, dies at 42
  • 1927 Borisav "Bora" Stanković, Serbian writer (b. 1875)
  • 1928 Gustave Ador, president of Austria (1919), dies at 82
  • 1928 Medardo Rosso, Italian sculptor (portraits), dies at 69
  • 1934 Franz Ehrle, German jesuit/head of Vatican library, dies at 88
  • 1938 Willem J T Kloos, Dutch poet/critic (New Guide), dies at 78
  • 1944 Mineichi Koga, admiral of Japanese fleet, dies

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1945 Hans Fischer, German physicist (Nobel 1930), dies at 63

Physicist and Nobel Laureate Hans Fischer
Physicist and Nobel Laureate
Hans Fischer
  • 1945 Maurice Rose, 1st US general in Nazi Germany, killed in action at 45
  • 1948 Egon E Kisch, Czech writer/journalist (Raging Reporter), dies at 62
  • 1952 Wallace H. White, Jr., American politician (b. 1877)
  • 1959 Peter Suhrkamp, German publisher (Suhrkamp Verlag), dies at 68
  • 1961 Seerp Anema, Dutch poet/writer (Modern Art & Degenerating), dies at 85
  • 1970 Semjon Timoshenko, Russ marshal/inspector-general (WW II), dies at 75
  • 1976 Paul Strand, American photographer (b. 1890)
  • 1978 Charles Herbert Best, American-Canadian physiologist/co-discoverer (Insulin), dies at 79
  • 1980 Vladimír Holan, Czech poet (b. 1905)
  • 1981 Enid Bagnold, British playwright (b. 1889)
  • 1982 Fritz Eberhard, West German lawyer/resistor, dies at 85
  • 1983 Christina Stead, Australian writer (b. 1902)
  • 1984 Ronald Clark O'Bryan, American murderer (b. 1944)
  • 1985 Jeanine Deckers, Belgian nun (b. 1933)
  • 1988 William McMahon, 20th Prime Minister of Australia (b. 1908)
  • 1990 Lillian "Miss" Miller, audience member (Merv Griffin, Tonight), dies
  • 1993 Jose Maria Lemus, president of El Salvador (1956-60), dies
  • 1994 Leon J Ramirez Reine, [Degrelle], Belg/Spanish nazi (Rex), dies at 87
  • 1996 Dante Giacosa, engineer/designer, dies at 91
  • 1996 Dario Bellezza, Italian poet, dies of AIDS at 51
  • 1996 Julius Young, fast food entrepreneur, dies at 73
  • 1997 Edwin Alberian, TV celebrity (Clarabell), dies at 76
  • 1997 Laxmishankar Pathak, food retailer, dies at 62
  • 1998 Bella Abzug, American politician (b. 1920)
  • 1999 Yuri Knorozov, Russian linguist (b. 1922)
  • 2001 Clifford Shull, American physicist, Nobel laureate (b. 1915)
  • 2003 H.S.M. Coxeter, English-born geometer (b. 1907)
  • 2005 Stanley J. Korsmeyer, American oncologist (b. 1951)
  • 2005 Frank Perdue, American poultry farmer (b. 1920)
  • 2005 Terri Schiavo, American figure in right to die case (b. 1963)
  • 2005 Justiniano Montano, Filipino politician (b. 1905)
  • 2007 Paul Watzlawick, Communications & Constructivism Theorist (b. 1921)
  • 2008 Bill Keightley, "Mr. Wildcat." University of Kentucky basketball equipment manger 1962-2008 (b .1926)
  • 2009 Jarl Alfredius, Swedish news anchor (b. 1943)
  • 2009 Raúl Alfonsín, Argentinean ex president (b. 1927)
  • 2016 Zaha Hadid, British architect (London Aquatic Centre), dies at 65
  • 2016 Imre Kertész, Hungarian writer (Nobel Laureate 2002) and concentration camp survivor, dies at 86
  • 2016 Hans-Dietrich Genscher, German Minister of Foreign Affairs (FDP), worked to re-unify Germany, dies at 89