On This Day

What Happened in March 1931

Historical Events

  • Mar 3 "The Star-Spangled Banner" officially becomes US national anthem by congressional resolution; lyrics by Francis Scott Key in 1814, set to John Stafford Smith's 18th century tune "The Anacreontic Song"
  • Mar 3 Cab Calloway records "Minnie the Moocher" (Jazz's 1st million seller)

Sports History

Mar 4 Don Bradman is bowled for a rare first ball duck by Herman Griffith (4-50) on the last day of 5th cricket Test vs West Indies in Sydney; Windies win by 31 runs but lose series to Australia, 4-1

  • Mar 4 West Indies beat Australia for the 1st time, by 30 runs at SCG

Treaty of Interest

Mar 5 Gandhi & British viceroy Lord Irwin sign pact

  • Mar 8 Australian Championships Women's Tennis: In an all-Australian final Coral McInnes Buttsworth beats Marjorie Cox Crawford 1-6, 6-3, 6-4
  • Mar 8 Australian Championships Men's Tennis: Jack Crawford wins 1st of 4 Australian titles; beats fellow Australian Harry Hopman 6-4, 6-2, 2-6, 6-1
  • Mar 10 Oswald Mosley leaves British Labour party and founds the "New Party"
  • Mar 11 Ready for Labour and Defence of the USSR, abbreviated as GTO, is introduced in the Soviet Union
  • Mar 14 1st theater built for rear movie projection (NYC)
  • Mar 16 Genootschap Onze Taal (Our Language) organizes (Netherlands)
  • Mar 18 1st electric shavers go on sale in US (Schick)
  • Mar 18 Juan Bautista Aznar becomes premier of Spain
  • Mar 19 Nevada legalizes gambling
  • Mar 20 Bishop Schreiber warns against national-socialism in Berlin
  • Mar 21 KRO-broadcast studio initiated in Hilversum Holland
  • Mar 21 US Ladies' Figure Skating championship won by Maribel Vinson
  • Mar 21 US Men's Figure Skating championship won by Roger Turner

Execution

Mar 23 Indian independence fighters Bhagat Singh, Shivaram Rajguru and Sukhdev Thapar are hanged after conducting an assassination and a bombing. Their request to be shot by a firing squad is refused.

  • Mar 25 Hal Kemp & his orchestra record Whistles, with Skinnay Ennis
  • Mar 25 Scottsboro Boys arrested in Alabama, accused of raping a white woman
  • Mar 26 Iraq & Trans-Jordan sign peace treaty
  • Mar 26 Leo Bentley bowls 3 consecutive perfect games in Lorain, Ohio
  • Mar 26 New Delhi replaces Calcutta as capital of British-Indies

Film & TV History

Mar 27 Charlie Chaplin receives France's distinguished Legion of Honor

  • Mar 27 John McGraw says night baseball will not catch on
  • Mar 27 90th Grand National: 9 year old Grakle, at odds of 100/6 and ridden by jockey Bob Lyall wins by 1.5 lengths from 1929 winner Gregalach
  • Mar 31 Brilliant Notre Dame football coach Knute Rockne (43) is killed with 7 others when light plane crashes on trip from Kansas City to Los Angeles; record 105-12-5 @ .881 remains best ever

Famous Birthdays

  • Mar 1 Índio, Brazilian soccer striker (7 caps; Flamengo, Corinthians, Espanyol), born in Cabedelo, Brazil (d. 2020)
  • Mar 2 Duane Graveline, doctor and astronaut, born in Newport Vermont (d. 2016)

Mikhail Gorbachev

Mar 2 Mikhail Gorbachev, General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (1985-91), born in Stavropol, Russia

  • Mar 2 Tom Wolfe, American journalist and author (The Right Stuff), born in Richmond, Virginia (d. 2018)
  • Mar 3 Henk Knol, Dutch 2nd chamber member (PvdA)
  • Mar 3 Piet [van] Bambergen, Dutch cabaretier (Mounties, Sherlock Jones)
  • Mar 4 Han Jansen, Dutch painter (d. 1994)
  • Mar 4 Wally Bruner, American journalist and television host (d. 1997)
  • Mar 4 Bob Johnson, American collegiate and NHL ice hockey coach (University of Wisconsin Badgers, 1966-82; US Olympic team, 1976; Calgary Flames, 1982-87; Pittsburgh Penguins, 1990-91), born in Minneapolis, Minnesota (d. 1991)
  • Mar 4 Alice Rivlin, American economist
  • Mar 5 Anthony Hedges, British light music and orchestral composer (Humberside Cantata), born in Bicester, Oxfordshire, England (d. 2019)
  • Mar 5 Barry Tuckwell, Australian horn player (London Symphony, 1955-68), born in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
  • Mar 5 Fred Othon Aristidès, French comics artist
  • Mar 6 Carmen de Lavallade, American actress, dancer and choreographer (Aida), born in Los Angeles, California
  • Mar 6 David Haddon Whitaker, British publisher (Whitaker's Almanack)
  • Mar 6 John Smith, American actor (Cimarron City, Laramie, 7 Angry Men), born in Los Angeles, California (d. 1995)
  • Mar 6 Hal Needham, American stuntman, (d. 2013)
  • Mar 6 Ed Whitlock, British-born runner, oldest person to run marathon under 4 hrs (at 85), born in London (d. 2017)
  • Mar 7 C W Stubblefield, American restaurateur and music promoter, born in Navasota, Texas (d. 1995)
  • Mar 7 Cornelis T "Cor" van de Molen, Dutch journalist (Beehive)
  • Mar 7 Wálter Taibo, Uruguayan soccer goalkeeper (30 caps; Huracán, C.A. Peñarol), born in Montevideo, Uruguay (d. 2021)
  • Mar 8 John McPhee, author (Back to ----)
  • Mar 8 Neil Adcock, South African cricket fast bowler (26 Tests, 104 wickets @ 21.10), born in Cape Town, Western Cape (d. 2013)
  • Mar 8 Neil Postman, American cultural critic (d. 2003)
  • Mar 9 Thore Skogman, Swedish entertainer, born in Hallstahammar, Sweden (d. 2007)
  • Mar 10 Georges Dor, Quebec author, playwright, singer and songwriter (d. 2001)
  • Mar 11 Peter Walters, CEO (Midland Bank)

Rupert Murdoch

Mar 11 Rupert Murdoch, Australian-born American media mogul (NY Post, News of the World, FOX-TV), born in Melbourne, Victoria

  • Mar 12 Geoffrey de Bellaigue, director (Royal Collection)
  • Mar 12 William "Billie" Thomas, American child actor (Buckwheat- Our Gang), born in Los Angeles, California (d. 1980)
  • Mar 12 Herbert Kelleher, Southwest Airlines co-founder
  • Mar 13 Marc Dessauvage, Belgian architect, born in Moorslede, Belgium (d. 1984)
  • Mar 13 Rosalind Elias, American mezzo-soprano (Wagner's Die Walküre - "Grimgerde"; Barber's Vanessa - "Erika"), and opera director, born in Lowell, Massachusetts (d. 2020)
  • Mar 13 Wolfgang Kohlhaase, German actor, director and writer (Solo Sunday), born in Berlin, Germany
  • Mar 14 Phil Phillips [Baptiste], American singer-songwriter (Sea of Love), born in Crowley, Louisiana (d. 2020)
  • Mar 15 (Dominic Joseph) "D. J." Fontana, American drummer (Elvis Presley), born in Shreveport, Louisiana (d. 2018)
  • Mar 16 Betty Johnson, American pop and cabaret singer (Jack Paar Show, I Dreamed), born in Guilford County, North Carolina
  • Mar 16 Don Richard Carpenter, American writer (Hard Rain Falling), born in Berkeley, California (d. 1995)
  • Mar 17 David Peakall, British scientist (d. 2001)
  • Mar 18 Howard Coble, American politician (Rep-R-NC, 1985-2015), born in Greensboro, North Carolina (d. 2015)
  • Mar 18 Jürgen Schadeberg, German-born South African photographer who photographed apartheid struggle, born in Berlin, Germany (d. 2020)
  • Mar 20 Antonio Tauriello, composer
  • Mar 20 Hal Linden [Harold Lipshitz], American actor (Barney Miller; Blacke's Magic), director, and musician, born in The Bronx, New York City
  • Mar 20 John Rae, British educator (Conscience & Politics)
  • Mar 21 Ivan William Hannaford, sociologist
  • Mar 22 Igor Hajek, Czech translator and writer, born in Ostrava, Czechoslovakia (d. 1995)
  • Mar 22 Leslie Thomas, Welsh writer (The Virgin Soldiers), born in Newport (d. 2014)

William Shatner

Mar 22 William Shatner, Canadian author, director and actor (Star Trek; T J Hooker), born in Montreal, Quebec

  • Mar 22 Billy Vessels, American College Football Hall of Fame halfback (Heisman Trophy 1952, University of Oklahoma), born in Cleveland, Oklahoma (d. 2001)
  • Mar 23 Norman F Lent, (Rep-R-NY, 1971- 93), (d. 2012)
  • Mar 23 Yevdokiya Mekshilo, Soviet skier (Olympic gold 1964), born in Gorno-Altaysk, Russia (d. 2013)
  • Mar 23 Yevgeni Grishin, Russian speed skater (4 Olympic gold 1956, 60), born in Tula, Russia (d. 2005)
  • Mar 24 Thelma Kalama, American 4 X 100m relay swimmer (Olympic gold 1948)
  • Mar 24 Connie Hines, American actress (Mister Ed), born in Dedham, Massachusetts (d. 2009)
  • Mar 25 Paul Motian, American jazz drummer (Bill Evans Trio; Keith Jarrett), composer, and bandleader (Electric Bebop Band), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 2011)
  • Mar 25 Tom Wilson, American record producer (Sun Ra; Bob Dylan; Simon & Garfunkel; Mothers of Invention; Velvet Underground), born in Waco, Texas (d. 1978)
  • Mar 25 Roger Zatkoff, American football linebacker (Pro Bowl 1954, 55, 56; First Team All Pro 1954, 55; Green Bay Packers), born in Hamtramck, Michigan (d. 2021)

Leonard Nimoy

Mar 26 Leonard Nimoy, American actor (Spock-Star Trek, Mission Impossible), born in Boston, Massachusetts (d. 2015)

  • Mar 27 Burt Collins, American jazz trumpeter, born in NYC, New York (d. 2007)
  • Mar 27 Bob Bauman, CEO (British Aerospace)
  • Mar 27 Yoriaki Matsudaira, Japanese composer, born in Tokyo
  • Mar 28 Anatoly Lein, Soviet-American chess player (Grandmaster 1968; World Chess Hall of Fame), born in Leningrad, Russia (d. 2018)
  • Mar 29 Evelyn de Rothschild, English banker and multi-millionaire, born in Westminster, London
  • Mar 29 James Weatherhead, Scottish moderator (General Assembly of Church of Scotland), born in Dundee (d. 2017)
  • Mar 29 Norman Tebbit, British Conservative party politician, cabinet minister and life peer, born in Ponders End, England
  • Mar 29 Sylvia Law, British town planner (President of the Royal Town Planning Institute), born in Southport, Lancashire
  • Mar 30 Harold Burrage, American blues and jazz singer, and pianist (Hi Yo Silver), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • Mar 30 Sándor Szokolay, Hungarian composer and pedagogue, born in Kunágota, Hungary (d. 2013)
  • Mar 31 Miller Barber, American golfer (11 PGA Tour; 3 US Senior Open titles), born in Shreveport, Louisiana (d. 2013)

Famous Deaths

  • Mar 5 Fr. Arthur Tooth SSC, Anglican Clergyman prosecuted and imprisoned for ritualist activities, dies ta 91
  • Mar 7 Akseli Gallen-Kallela, Finnish painter known for his illustrations of the Kalevala, the Finnish national epic, dies at 65 [1]
  • Mar 7 Theo van Doesburg [Christian Emil Marie Küpper], Dutch painter and architect, dies at 47
  • Mar 8 Clara Kathleen Rogers, composer, dies at 87
  • Mar 11 F.W. Murnau, German film director (b. 1888)
  • Mar 20 Hermann Müller, Chancellor of Germany (b. 1876)
  • Mar 25 Ida Bell Wells-Barnett, American journalist and civil rights activist, dies at 68
  • Mar 27 Arnold Bennett, English novelist (Anna of the Five Towns), dies at 63

Ban Johnson

Mar 28 Ban Johnson, American Baseball HOF executive (founder, President American League), dies after a long illness at 67

  • Mar 31 Knute Rockne, American College Football Hall of Fame receiver, coach, (Notre Dame, 13 National titles), dies in a plane crash at 43
  • Mar 31 Hermann Kutter, Swiss Protestant theologian (founder of Christian Socialism in Switzerland), dies at 67