This Day in History

Posted: Wednesday, March 21, 2007

In Alaska

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• In 1913, Gov. Walter Clark signed the first law of the first Alaska Legislature, providing for women's suffrage.

• In 1969, the city of Fairbanks was named an "All-American City" by editors of Look Magazine and the National Municipal League.

In the nation

• In 1946, the United Nations set up temporary headquarters at Hunter College in New York.

• In 1965, more than 3,000 civil rights demonstrators led by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. began their march from Selma to Montgomery, Ala.

• In 2002, Marjorie Knoller, whose two huge dogs had mauled neighbor Diane Whipple to death in their San Francisco apartment building, was convicted in Los Angeles of second-degree murder; her husband, Robert Noel, was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter. (A judge later threw out the murder conviction against Knoller, replacing it with manslaughter, but the murder conviction was reinstated by an appeals court.)

• In 2006, President Bush predicted American forces would remain in Iraq for years and that it would be up to a future president to decide when to bring them all home. But defying critics and plunging polls, Bush declared, "I'm optimistic we'll succeed." Sgt. Michael J. Smith, an Army dog handler at Abu Ghraib, was convicted at Fort Meade, Md., of abusing prisoners. (Smith was later sentenced to 179 days in prison.)

In the world

• In 1804, the French civil code, or the "Code Napoleon" as it was later called, was adopted.

• In 1907, U.S. Marines arrived in Honduras to protect American lives and interests in the wake of political violence.

• In 1957, President Eisenhower and British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan began a four-day conference in Bermuda.

• In 1960, some 70 people were killed in Sharpeville, South Africa, when police fired on demonstrators.

• In 1979, the Egyptian Parliament unanimously approved a peace treaty with Israel.

• In 1985, police in Langa, South Africa, opened fire on blacks marching to mark the 25th anniversary of the Sharpeville shootings, killing at least 21 demonstrators.

• In 1997, President Clinton and Russian President Boris Yeltsin wrapped up their summit in Helsinki, Finland, still deadlocked over NATO expansion, but able to agree on slashing nuclear weapons arsenals. A suicide bomber blew himself up in Tel Aviv, killing three Israeli women.

• In 2002, President Bush began a four-day trip to Latin America. Alexei Yagudin won the men's title at the World Figure Skating Championships in Nagano, Japan.

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