Behind History For March 16
934 – Meng Zhixiang declares himself emperor and establishes Later Shu as a new state independent of Later Tang.
1190 – Massacre of Jews at Clifford’s Tower, York.
1244 – Over 200 Cathars who refuse to recant are burned to death after the Fall of Montségur.
1322 – The Battle of Boroughbridge takes place in the Despenser Wars.
1521 – Ferdinand Magellan reaches the island of Homonhon in the Philippines.
1621 – Samoset, a Mohegan, visited the settlers of Plymouth Colony and greets them, “Welcome, Englishmen! My name is Samoset.”
1660 – The Long Parliament of England is dissolved so as to prepare for the new Convention Parliament.
1689 – The 23rd Regiment of Foot, or Royal Welch Fusiliers, is founded.
1782 – American Revolutionary War: Spanish troops capture the British-held island of Roatán.
1782 – Anglo-Spanish War (1779): Action of 16 March 1782.
1792 – King Gustav III of Sweden is shot; he dies on March 29.
1797 – French Revolutionary Wars: An Austrian column is defeated by the French in the Battle of Valvasone.
1802 – The Army Corps of Engineers is established to found and operate the United States Military Academy at West Point.
1812 – The Siege of Badajoz begins: British and Portuguese forces besiege and defeat the French garrison during the Peninsular War.
1815 – Prince Willem proclaims himself King of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands, the first constitutional monarch in the Netherlands.
1818 – In the Second Battle of Cancha Rayada, Spanish forces defeated Chileans under José de San Martín.
1864 – American Civil War: During the Red River Campaign, Union troops reach Alexandria, Louisiana.
1865 – American Civil War: The Battle of Averasborough began as Confederate forces suffer irreplaceable casualties in the final months of the war.
1870 – The first version of the overture fantasy Romeo and Juliet by Tchaikovsky receives its première performance.
1872 – The Wanderers F.C. won the first FA Cup, the oldest football competition in the world, beating Royal Engineers A.F.C. 1–0 at The Oval in Kennington, London.
1894 – Jules Massenet’s opera Thaïs is first performed.
1898 – In Melbourne the representatives of five colonies adopted a constitution, which would become the basis of the Commonwealth of Australia.
1900 – Sir Arthur Evans purchased the land around the ruins of Knossos, the largest Bronze Age archaeological site on Crete.
1916 – The 7th and 10th US cavalry regiments under John J. Pershing cross the US–Mexico border to join the hunt for Pancho Villa.
1917 – World War I: A German auxiliary cruiser is sunk in the Action of 16 March 1917.
1918 – Finnish Civil War: Battle of Länkipohja is infamous for its bloody aftermath as the Whites executed 70–100 capitulated Reds.
1924 – In accordance with the Treaty of Rome, Fiume becomes annexed as part of Italy.
1925 – An earthquake occurs in Yunnan, China.
1926 – History of Rocketry: Robert Goddard launches the first liquid-fueled rocket, at Auburn, Massachusetts.
1935 – Adolf Hitler orders Germany to rearm herself in violation of the Treaty of Versailles. Conscription is reintroduced to form the Wehrmacht.
1936 – Warmer-than-normal temperatures rapidly melt snow and ice on the upper Allegheny and Monongahela rivers, leading to a major flood in Pittsburgh.
1939 – From Prague Castle, Hitler proclaims Bohemia and Moravia a German protectorate.
1940 – First person killed (James Isbister) in a German bombing raid on the UK in World War II during a raid on Scapa Flow in the Orkney Islands.
1945 – World War II: The Battle of Iwo Jima ended, but small pockets of Japanese resistance persisted.
1945 – Ninety percent of Würzburg, Germany is destroyed in only 20 minutes by British bombers, resulting in around 5,000 deaths.
1958 – The Ford Motor Company produces its 50 millionth automobile, the Thunderbird, averaging almost a million cars a year since the company’s founding.
1962 – A Flying Tiger Line Super Constellation disappears in the western Pacific Ocean, with all 107 aboard missing and presumed dead.
1966 – Launch of Gemini 8, the 12th manned American space flight and first space docking with an Agena Target Vehicle.
1968 – Vietnam War: My Lai Massacre occurs; between 347 and 500 Vietnamese villagers (men, women, and children) are killed by American troops.
1968 – General Motors produces its 100 millionth automobile, the Oldsmobile Toronado.
1969 – A Viasa McDonnell Douglas DC-9 crashes in Maracaibo, Venezuela, killing 155.
1976 – British Prime Minister Harold Wilson resigns, citing personal reasons.
1977 – Assassination of Kamal Jumblatt, the main leader of the anti-government forces in the Lebanese Civil War.
1978 – Former Italian Prime Minister Aldo Moro is kidnapped. (He is later murdered by his captors.)
1978 – A Balkan Bulgarian Airlines Tupolev Tu-134 crashes near Gabare, Bulgaria, killing 73.
1978 – Supertanker Amoco Cadiz splits in two after running aground on the Portsall Rocks, three miles off the coast of Brittany, resulting in the largest oil spill in history at that time.
1979 – Sino-Vietnamese War: The People’s Liberation Army crosses the border back into China, ends the war.
1983 – Demolition of the Ismaning radio transmitter, the last wooden radio tower in Germany.
1984 – William Buckley, the CIA station chief in Beirut, Lebanon, is kidnapped by Islamic fundamentalists. (He later dies in captivity.)
1985 – Associated Press newsman Terry Anderson is taken hostage in Beirut. He is released on December 4, 1991.
1988 – Iran–Contra affair: Lieutenant Colonel Oliver North and Vice Admiral John Poindexter are indicted on charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States.
1988 – Halabja chemical attack: The Kurdish town of Halabja in Iraq is attacked with a mix of poison gas and nerve agents on the orders of Saddam Hussein, killing 5,000 people and injuring about 10,000 people.
1988 – The Troubles: Ulster loyalist militant Michael Stone attacks a Provisional IRA funeral in Belfast with pistols and grenades. A PIRA volunteer and two civilians are killed, and more than 60 others are wounded.
1991 – The airplane carrying eight members of Reba McEntire’s touring band crashed on the side of Otay Mountain.
1995 – Mississippi formally ratifies the Thirteenth Amendment, becoming the last state to approve the abolition of slavery. The Thirteenth Amendment was officially ratified in 1865.
2001 – A series of bomb blasts that took place in the city of Shijiazhuang, China killed 108 people and injured 38 others, was the biggest mass murder in China in decades.
2003 – American activist Rachel Corrie is killed in Rafah trying to obstruct the demolition of a home by being run over by a bulldozer.
2005 – Israel officially hands over Jericho to Palestinian control.
2014 – Crimea votes in a controversial referendum to secede from Ukraine to join Russia.
2016 – A bomb detonates in a bus carrying government employees in Peshawar, Pakistan, killing 15 and injuring at least 54.
2016 – Two suicide bombers detonate their explosives at a mosque during morning prayer on the outskirts of Maiduguri, Nigeria, killing 22 and injuring 18.
2017 – US President Donald Trump’s second travel ban is blocked by 2 federal courts
2018 – Indian actor Irrfan Khan reveals he has been diagnosed with a neuroendocrine tumour.
2018 – Asia’s second-richest person, Hong Kong’s Li Ka-Shing, announces his retirement at 89
2019 – Beached dead whale found to have 88 pounds of plastic inside it, including 40 pounds of plastic bags, in Mabini , Philippines
2020 – Global infections and deaths from coronavirus COVID-19 overtake those in China for the 1st time, 86,000 vs 80,860 infections, 3,241 vs 3,208 deaths according to John Hopkins University.