On This Day

March 1940 in History

Events in History

  • Mar 1 Richard Wright's novel "Native Son" is published
  • Mar 2 Soviet armies conquer Tuppura Island, Finland
  • Mar 2 Beaten by a nose in both the 1937 and 1938 Santa Anita Handicaps, Seabiscuit finally wins the Big 'Cap in his final race; retires the leading money-winning horse in the world
  • Mar 6 1st US telecast from an airplane, NYC
  • Mar 12 Finland signs the Moscow Peace Treaty in Moscow, surrendering to Russia and ceding 11% of their pre-WWII territory, ending the "Winter War"
  • Mar 13 Finland-Russian cease fire signed, the Winter War ends. Finland gives up Karelische
  • Mar 14 27 killed, 15 injured when truck full of migrant workers collides with a train outside McAllen, Texas

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Mar 15 Hermann Goering says 100-200 church bells enough for Germany, smelt the rest

Nazi Politician Hermann Goering
Nazi Politician
Hermann Goering
  • Mar 16 German air raid on British fleet base Scapa Flow

AgreementAgreement of Interest

Mar 18 Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler meet at Brenner Pass where the Italian dictator agrees he will, in due course, join Germany's impending war effort in the west

Italian Dictator Benito Mussolini
Italian Dictator
Benito Mussolini
Dictator of Nazi Germany Adolf Hitler
Dictator of Nazi Germany
Adolf Hitler
  • Mar 19 Failed British air raid on German base at Sylt

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Mar 19 French government of Édouard Daladier falls

Prime Minister of France Édouard Daladier
Prime Minister of France
Édouard Daladier
  • Mar 20 Paul Reynoud becomes French premier
  • Mar 23 All-India-Muslim League calls for a Muslim homeland
  • Mar 23 The Lahore Resolution (Qarardad-e-Pakistan or the then Qarardad-e-Lahore) is put forward at the Annual General Convention of the All India Muslim League.

Music releaseTheater Premiere

Mar 26 "The Fifth Column", a play by Ernest Hemingway and adapted by Benjamin Glazer premieres in NYC courtesy of the Theater Guild

Electoral defeatElection of Interest

Mar 27 Peter Fraser becomes Prime Minister of New Zealand after the death of his predecessor Michael Joeseph Savage from cancer

New Zealand Prime Minister Peter Fraser
New Zealand Prime Minister
Peter Fraser
  • Mar 28 Construction begins of the exhibition center to host the Thessaloniki International Trade Fair
  • Mar 31 Karelo-Finnish SSR becomes 12th Soviet republic (until 1956)

Birthdays in History

  • Mar 1 Robert Grossman, American illustrator, born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 2018)
  • Mar 2 Frederik van Zyl Slabbert, chairman (South African Prog Fed Party, 1979-86)
  • Mar 3 Germán Castro Caycedo, Colombian writer and journalist
  • Mar 4 Volodymyr Morozov, Ukrainian flatwater canoer
  • Mar 5 Mary Rose Oakar, (Rep)
  • Mar 7 Harald Gerlach, German writer, born in Bolesławiec, Poland (d. 2001)
  • Mar 7 Rudi [Rudolf] Dutschke, German student leader (Glasnost Berlin)
  • Mar 7 Viktor Savinykh, Russian cosmonaut (Soyuz T-4, T-13, TM-5), born in Berezkiny, Kirov
  • Mar 8 Leslie Isben Rogge, one of FBI's most wanted
  • Mar 10 David Rabe, Dubuque Iowa, playwright (Streamers)
  • Mar 15 Frank Dobson, British politician
  • Mar 15 Margo Coleman, American advice columnist
  • Mar 16 Jan P. Pronk, Dutch politician (PvdA)
  • Mar 16 Jan Schaefer, Dutch asst secretary of state (PvdA)
  • Mar 17 Mark White, American politician, lawyer, and 43rd Governor of Texas (1983-7), born in Henderson, Texas (d. 2017)
  • Mar 20 Gianpiero Moretti, steering wheel designer (Momo), born in Milan, Italy (d. 2012)
  • Mar 22 William Ritchie, vice-chancellor (Lancaster U)
  • Mar 24 Robert "Bob" Mackie, American fashion designer (RuPaul, Tina Turner, Judy Garland, Carol Burnett, Streisand, Cher), born in Monterey Park, California
  • Mar 26 Bill Ind, Bishop-designate (Truro)

Person of interestNancy Pelosi

Mar 26 Nancy Pelosi, American politician (Rep-D-California 1987-), 1st female Speaker of the House (2007-11, 2019-), born in Baltimore, Maryland

US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi
US Speaker of the House
Nancy Pelosi
  • Mar 26 Servaes Huys, Dutch politician (PvdA)
  • Mar 31 Barney Frank, (Rep-D-MA, 1981- )
  • Mar 31 Patrick J Leahy, (Sen-D-VT, 1975- )

Weddings in History


LoveWedding of Interest

Mar 30 Broadcast journalist Walter Cronkite weds Mary Elizabeth Maxwell at the Grace and Holy Trinity Episcopal Church

Broadcast Journalist Walter Cronkite
Broadcast Journalist
Walter Cronkite

Deaths in History

  • Mar 1 Anton Hansen Tammsaare, Estonian author (Truth and Justice), dies at 62
  • Mar 4 Hamlin Garland, American writer (Middle Border), dies at 79
  • Mar 5 Cai Yuanpei, Chinese educator (b. 1868)
  • Mar 7 Edwin Markham, American poet (1st winner of American Academy of Poets Award 1937), dies at 87
  • Mar 10 Mikhaïl Boulgakov, Russian writer (b. 1891)

Person of interestSelma Lagerlöf

Mar 16 Selma Lagerlöf, Swedish writer and Nobel Prize laureate, dies at 81

Author and Nobel Laureate Selma Lagerlöf
Author and Nobel Laureate
Selma Lagerlöf
  • Mar 19 Gustaaf Sap, Belgian minister of Economic Affairs, dies at 54
  • Mar 20 Alfred Ploetz, German physician, biologist, and eugenicist (b. 1860)

Person of interestMichael Joseph Savage

Mar 27 Michael Joseph Savage, Australian-born New Zealand politician and first Labour Prime Minister of New Zealand (1935-40), dies of colon cancer at 68

New Zealand Prime Minister Michael Joseph Savage
New Zealand Prime Minister
Michael Joseph Savage