March 21th in History

Today's Highlight in History:
On March 21st, 1965, more than 3,000 civil rights demonstrators led by the Reverend Martin Luther King Junior began their march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama.

On this date:
In 1685, composer Johann Sebastian Bach was born in Eisenach, Germany.

In 1790, Thomas Jefferson reported to President Washington in New York as the new secretary of state.

In 1804, the French civil code, the "Code Napoleon," was adopted.

In 1806, Mexican statesman Benito Juarez was born in Oaxaca.

In 1945, during World War Two, Allied bombers began four days of raids over Germany.

In 1946, the United Nations set up temporary headquarters at Hunter College in New York.

In 1960, some 70 people were killed in Sharpeville, South Africa, when police fired on demonstrators.

In 1963, the Alcatraz federal prison island in San Francisco Bay was emptied of its last inmates at the order of Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy.

In 1972, the Supreme Court ruled that states may not require at least a year's residency for voting eligibility.

In 1979, the Egyptian Parliament unanimously approved a peace treaty with Israel.

Ten years ago: Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev increased pressure on the breakaway republic of Lithuania, ordering its citizens to turn in their guns. Secretary of State James Baker met black nationalist leader Nelson Mandela in Namibia.

Five years ago: Thousands of Japanese police raided the offices of a secretive religious group, Aum Shinri Kyo, in connection with nerve-gas attacks on Tokyo subways that killed 12 people and sickened thousands.

One year ago: Israel's Supreme Court rejected a final effort to have American teen-ager Samuel Sheinbein returned to the United States to face murder charges. (Under a plea agreement with Israeli proseuctors, Sheinbein was later sentenced to 24 years in prison for the murder of Alfred Tello Junior. At the Academy Awards, "Shakespeare in Love" won seven Oscars, including best picture and best actress for Gwyneth Paltrow; Roberto Benigni won best actor for "Life is Beautiful," while Steven Spielberg won best director for "Saving Private Ryan."


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"The heaviest baggage for a traveler is an empty purse."

-- German proverb.

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