This Day in History

March 19


1279      Battle of Yamen, Mongol forces of the Yuan Dynastry defeat Song forces leading to the end of the Song Dynasty   739
1286      Alexander III, King of Scots, dies after a reign of 37 years, age 44   732
1563      Edict of Amboise signed restoring peace to France by guaranteeing the Huguenots religious privileges and freedoms   455
1687      French explorer Robert de LaSalle is killed by his mutinous crew on the Texas coast, age 43   331
1797      English composer, organist, singer, and conductor Philip Hayes dies, age 58   221
1813      David Livingston, Scottish explorer and missionary, born   205
1831      City Bank of New York is site of first bank robbery in U.S.   187
1850      American Express is founded by Henry Wells and William Fargo   168
1863      Confederate cruiser SS Georgiana is destroyed on her maiden voyage attempting to run the Union blockade of Charleston   155
1872      American Seventh-day Adventist religious leader Joseph L. Bates dies age 79   146
1895      first film footage is made on the newly patented cinématographe by the Lumière brothers Auguste Marie Louis Nicolas and Louis Jean   123
1897      French explorer, geographer, ethnologist, and astronomer Antoine Thomson d'Abbadie dies in Italy, age 87   121
1900      French physicist and Nobel Laureate Jean Frédéric Joliot-Curie born in Paris   118
1915      Pluto photographed for the first time—not recognized until 1930   103
1918      U.S. first approves Daylight Savings Time to begin 31 Mar 1918   100
1931      Nevada legalizes gambling   87
1932      Sydney Harbour Bridge opens   86
1941      99th Pursuit Squadron of the U.S. Army Air Corps consisting of black pilots, the Tuskegee Airmen, is activated   77
1945      Nero Order:  leader of Germany orders all German infrastructure destroyed ahead of advancing allied forces—order is ignored   73
1950      American author Edgar Rice Burroughs dies in Encino, California, age 74   68
1950      British chemist and Nobel laureate (1937) Norman Haworth "Walter" dies on his birthday in Worcestershire, England, age 67   68
1962      Bob Dylan's first album, Bob Dylan, is released by Columbia Records   56
1978      French mathematician Gaston Maurice Julia dies in Paris, age 85   40
1979      C-SPAN first goes on the air broadcasting a speech by then-congressman Al Gore   39
1987      French physicist and Nobel laureate (Physics 1929) Louis-Victor-Pierre-Raymond, 7th duc de Broglie dies, age 94   31
1996      American influential nurse, researcher, theorist, and author Virginia Avenel Henderson dies in Branford, Connecticut, age 98   22
1997      Dutch-American abstract expressionist artist Willem de Kooning dies n New York state, age 92   21
1997      French poet Eugène Guillevic dies in Paris, age 89   21
1999      Mexican contemporary poet Jaime Sabines Gutiérrez dies in Mexico City, age 72   19
2002      Zimbabwe becomes the only country suspended from the Commonwealth of Nations—charges of human rights abuses and electoral fraud   16
2005      American engineer and founder of the DeLorean Motor Company John Zachary DeLorean dies in New Jersey, age 80   13
2007      first landing in the U.S. of the Airbus 380 superjumbo   11
2007      American Institute of Mathematics announces the complete mapping of 348-dimensional E8 group   11
2008      Belgian author Hugo Maurice Julien Claus dies in Antwerp, age 78   10
2008      English actor of stage and screen and Academy award winner David Paul Scofield dies in Sussex, England, age 86   10
2008      British science fiction author and futurist Arthur Charles Clarke dies in Colombo, Sri Lanka, age 90   10
2008      supernova, GRB 080319B, over 7.5 billion light years distant briefly visible to the naked eye   10
2010      pioneering American aviator, youngest licensed pilot at age 16, and first woman test pilot for Fairchild Elinor Smith dies, age 98   8
2011      French Air Force launches Opération Harmattan, beginning foreign military intervention in the Libyian Civil War   7
2016      with docking of Soyuz TMA-20M carrying three members of Expedition 47, the 100th long-term crew member arrives at the ISS   2

Dates are always somewhat ambiguous, the exact date depends on whether local time is used (and local time where) or Universal Time—for events on the surface of the Earth, local time is probably best but for an event that spans across the planet, it is not clear which local time to use!. For events in space it is more ambiguous. Further for dates after the original adoption of the Gregorian calendar but before it became accepted in different countries, the date given may be a Julian date or a Gregorian date depending upon where the event occurred. And, even the year may be different since the first of the year has not always been January 1 in all countries! The attempt is to use a date that is the one that is typically given.

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