Today is Wednesday, March 29, the 88th day of 2017. There are 277 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On March 29, 1867, Britain’s Parliament passed, and Queen Victoria signed, the British North America Act creating the Dominion of Canada, which came into being the following July.
On this date:
In 1638, Swedish colonists settled in present-day Delaware.
In 1790, the tenth president of the United States, John Tyler, was born in Charles City County, Virginia.
In 1792, Sweden’s King Gustav III died, nearly two weeks after he had been shot and mortally wounded by an assassin during a masquerade party.
In 1912, British explorer Robert Falcon Scott, his doomed expedition stranded in an Antarctic blizzard after failing to be the first to reach the South Pole, wrote the last words of his journal: “For Gods sake look after our people.”
In 1936, German Chancellor Adolf Hitler claimed overwhelming victory in a plebiscite on his policies.
In 1943, World War II rationing of meat, fats and cheese began.
In 1951, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were convicted in New York of conspiracy to commit espionage for the Soviet Union. (They were executed in June 1953.) The Rodgers and Hammerstein musical “The King and I” opened on Broadway.
In 1962, Jack Paar hosted NBC’s “Tonight” show for the final time. (Johnny Carson debuted as host the following October.)
In 1971, Army Lt. William L. Calley Jr. was convicted of murdering 22 Vietnamese civilians in the My Lai (mee ly) massacre. (Calley ended up serving three years under house arrest.) A jury in Los Angeles recommended the death penalty for Charles Manson and three female followers for the 1969 Tate-La Bianca murders. (The sentences were later commuted.)
In 1973, the last United States combat troops left South Vietnam, ending America’s direct military involvement in the Vietnam War.
In 1984, under cover of early morning darkness, the Baltimore Colts football team left its home city of three decades and moved to Indianapolis.
In 1992, Democratic presidential front-runner Bill Clinton acknowledged experimenting with marijuana “a time or two” while attending Oxford University, adding, “I didn’t inhale and I didn’t try it again.”
Ten years ago: A defiant, Democratic-controlled Senate approved, 51-47, legislation calling for the withdrawal of U.S. combat troops from Iraq within a year (however, supporters of the bill were unable to muster enough votes to override a promised veto by President George W. Bush). Veteran diplomat Ryan Crocker was sworn in as the new U.S. ambassador to Iraq. West Virginia beat Clemson, 78-73, for its first NIT title in 65 years.
Five years ago: A divided House approved, 228-191, a $3.6 trillion Republican budget recasting Medicare and imposing sweeping cuts in domestic programs. Stanford routed Minnesota 75-51 to win the NIT title.
One year ago: In the clearest sign yet of the impact of Justice Antonin Scalia’s death, labor unions won, on a tie vote, a high-profile Supreme Court dispute they had seemed all but certain to lose. President Barack Obama told the National Rx Drug Abuse & Heroin Summit in Atlanta that opioid abuse needed to be a higher-priority issue for the federal government. A man described as “psychologically unstable” hijacked a flight from Egypt to Cyprus, threatening to blow it up; his explosives turned out to be fake and he surrendered with all passengers released unharmed after a bizarre, six-hour standoff. Oscar-winning actress Patty Duke, 69, died in Coeur D’Alene, Idaho.
Today’s Birthdays: Author Judith Guest is 81. Former British Prime Minister Sir John Major is 74. Comedian Eric Idle is 74. Composer Vangelis is 74. Basketball Hall of Famer Walt Frazier is 72. Singer Bobby Kimball (Toto) is 70. Actor Bud Cort is 69. Actor Brendan Gleeson is 62. Actor Christopher Lawford is 62. Pro and College Football Hall of Famer Earl Campbell is 62. Actress Marina Sirtis is 62. International Gymnastics Hall of Famer Kurt Thomas is 61. Actor Christopher Lambert is 60. Rock singer Perry Farrell (Porno for Pyros; Jane’s Addiction) is 58. Comedian-actress Amy Sedaris is 56. Model Elle Macpherson is 54. Movie director Michel Hazanavicius (mee-SHEHL’ ah-zah-nah-VEE’-see-oos) is 50. Rock singer-musician John Popper (Blues Traveler) is 50. Actress Lucy Lawless is 49. Country singer Regina Leigh (Regina Regina) is 49. Country singer Brady Seals is 48. Former White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs is 46. CBS News correspondent Lara Logan is 46. Actor Sam Hazeldine is 45. International Tennis Hall of Famer Jennifer Capriati is 41. Actor Chris D’Elia is 37. Pop singer Kelly Sweet is 29.
Thought for Today: “To silence criticism is to silence freedom.” — Sidney Hook, American philosopher and author (1902-1989).
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