TODAY IN HISTORY
TODAY IS WEDNESDAY, MARCH 15,
the 74th day of 2023. There are 291 days left in the year. Today’s highlight in history: On this date in 44 B.C., Roman dictator Julius Caesar was assassinated by a group of nobles that included Brutus and Cassius. In 1493, Italian explorer Christopher Columbus arrived back in the Spanish harbor of Palos de la Frontera, two months after concluding his first voyage to the Western Hemisphere. In 1820, Maine became the 23rd state. In 1917, Czar Nicholas II abdicated in favor of his brother, Grand Duke Mikhail Alexandrovich, who declined the crown, marking the end of imperial rule in Russia. In 1944, during World War II, Allied bombers again raided German-held Monte Cassino. In 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson, addressing a joint session of Congress, called for new legislation to guarantee every American’s right to vote; the result was passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. In 2011, the Syrian civil war had its beginnings with Arab Spring protests across the region that turned into an armed insurgency and eventually became a full-blown conflict. In 2019, a gunman killed 51 people at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, streaming the massacre live on Facebook. (Brenton Tarrant, an Australian white supremacist, was sentenced to life in prison without parole after pleading guilty to 51 counts of murder and other charges.) In 2020, the Federal Reserve took massive emergency action to help the economy withstand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic by slashing its benchmark interest rate to near zero and saying it would buy $700 billion in treasury and mortgage bonds. After initially trying to keep schools open, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said the nation’s largest public school system would close in hopes of curbing the spread of coronavirus.
Actor Judd Hirsch is 88. Rock singer Ry Cooder is 76. Actor Frances Conroy is 70. Actors Joaquim de Almeida and Park Overall are 66. Movie director Renny Harlin is 64. Model Fabio is 62. Actor Eva Longoria and musician will.i.am are 48.