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What Happened On This Day In History: 17th March

March 17th is the 76th day of a calendar year and the 77th day in a leap year. Over the years in history, this day has witnessed many events, some of which are: 

In the 1700s:

  • On this day in 1756, New York City celebrated St. Patrick’s Day for the very first time. 
  • In 1766, Britain revoked the infamous Stamp Act. 

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In the 1800s:

  • In 1868, the patent for the postage stamp cancelling machine was issued. 
  • In 1884, John Joseph Montgomery made the first manned and controlled glider flight in the United States.  
  • In 1891, Utopia, the British steamer ship, sank off the coast of Gibraltar. 

In the 1900s:

  • On this day in 1901, Vincent Van Gogh’s paintings were exhibited at the Bernheim Gallery in Paris. 
  • In 1910, Luther and Charlotte Gulick founded the Camp Fire Girls Organisation. 
  • In 1930, Al Capone was released from jail. On the same day in New York City, the construction of the Empire State Building began. 
  • In 1941, the then president of the United States of America, Franklin D. Roosevelt officially opened the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. 
  • It was on this day in 1944, when the United States bombed Vienna during the Second World War. 
  • In 1950, the scientists at the University of California at Berkeley created the “element 98,” which was a new radioactive element. 
  • In 1958, the United States of America launched the Vanguard 1 satellite. 
  • In 1959, the Dalai Lama fled to India from Tibet. 
  • It was on this day in 1966, when a U.S. submarine found a missing H-bomb in the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Spain. 
  • In 1969, Golda Meir swore in as Israel’s fourth Prime Minister. 
  • On this day in 1973, the first American Prisoners of War, also known as POWs, were released in Hanoi in Northern Vietnam. 
  • In 1999, a group of medical experts came up with the conclusion that marijuana was medically beneficial for people who had AIDS and cancer. 

2000s onwards:

  • In the year 2000, Jens Stotenberg, along with the Labour Party took over the government of Norway. In the same year, in Kanungu in Uganda, a fire at a church which was linked to the Movement for the Restoration of the Ten Commandments killed over 500 people. 
  • In 2004, NASA’s Messenger went on to become the first spacecraft that entered into Mercury’s orbit.


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