Monday, March 19, 2012. What happened today in years past?
1865 – American Civil War: The Battle of Bentonville begins. By the end of the battle two days later, Confederate forces had retreated from Four Oaks, North Carolina.
1918 – The U.S. Congress establishes time zones and approves daylight saving time.
1920 – The United States Senate rejects the Treaty of Versailles for the second time (the first time was on November 19, 1919).
1931 – Gambling is legalized in Nevada.
1941 – World War II: The 99th Pursuit Squadron also known as the Tuskegee Airmen, the first all-black unit of the Army Air Corp, is activated.
1943 – Frank Nitti, the Chicago Outfit Boss after Al Capone, commits suicide at the Chicago Central Railyard.
1944 – World War II: Nazi forces occupy Hungary.
1945 – World War II: Off the coast of Japan, a dive bomber hits the aircraft carrier USS Franklin, killing 724 of her crew. Badly damaged, the ship is able to return to the U.S. under her own power.
1945 – World War II: Adolf Hitler issues his “Nero Decree” ordering all industries, military installations, shops, transportation facilities and communications facilities in Germany to be destroyed.
1954 – Willie Mosconi sets a world record by running 526 consecutive balls without a miss during a straight pool exhibition at East High Billiard Club in Springfield, Ohio. The record still stands today.
1965 – The wreck of the SS Georgiana, valued at over $50,000,000 and said to have been the most powerful Confederate cruiser, is discovered by then teenage diver and pioneer underwater archaeologist E. Lee Spence, exactly 102 years after its destruction.
1966 – Texas Western becomes the first college basketball team to win the Final Four with an all-black starting lineup.
Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker
1979 – The United States House of Representatives begins broadcasting its day-to-day business via the cable television network C-SPAN.
1987 – Televangelist Jim Bakker resigns as head of the PTL Club due to a brewing sex scandal; he hands over control to Jerry Falwell.
2003 – United States President George W. Bush orders the start of war against Iraq.
2008 – GRB 080319B: A cosmic burst that is the farthest object visible to the naked eye is briefly observed.
1848 – Wyatt Earp, American marshall (d. 1929)
1928 – Patrick McGoohan, American actor (d. 2009)
1936 – Ursula Andress, Swiss actress
1947 – Glenn Close, American actress
1955 – Bruce Willis, American actor
1943 – Frank Nitti, American gangster (b. 1883)
1982 – Randy Rhoads, American guitarist (Quiet Riot, Ozzy Osbourne) (b. 1956)
2005 – John DeLorean, American automobile engineer (b. 1925)