Published On: Mar 26 2013 12:37:13 PM EDTUpdated On: Mar 29 2015 02:00:00 AM EDT
2014: The first same-sex marriages in England and Wales are performed. Gay couples had been able to enter civil partnerships since 2005, but a July 2013 change in the law allowed them to marry. A number of couples arranged for their wedding ceremonies to take place shortly after midnight to become some of the first to take advantage of the new law.
2010: Two female suicide bombers hit the Moscow Metro system at the peak of the morning rush hour, killing 40 and injuring more than 100. Two days later, Chechen terrorist leader Doku Umarov claimed responsibility for ordering the attacks in a video released on the Internet.
2009: Actor and singer Andy Hallett, best known for playing the part of the green-skinned karaoke bar-owning demon Lorne in the TV series "Angel," dies from congestive heart failure at the age of 33 in Los Angeles, California.
2008: Thirty-five countries and more than 370 cities join Earth Hour for the first time, with households and businesses encouraged to turn off their non-essential lights for one hour to raise awareness about the need to take action on climate change. Shown here is the darkened Empire State Building in New York City during Earth Hour in 2009.
2005: Lawyer Johnnie Cochran, best known for his leadership role in the defense and criminal acquittal of O. J. Simpson for the murder of his former wife Nicole Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman, dies of a brain tumor at the age of 67 in Los Angeles, California. Cochran, who famously uttered the phrase "If it doesn't fit, you must acquit" during closing arguments in the Simpson trial, also represented Sean Combs, Michael Jackson, Tupac Shakur, Todd Bridges, football player Jim Brown, Snoop Dogg, former heavyweight Champion Riddick Bowe and 1992 Los Angeles riot beating victim Reginald Oliver Denny.
2005: Standup comedian Mitch Hedberg, known for his surreal humor and unconventional comedic delivery, is found dead in his hotel room in Livingston, New Jersey, at age 37. The official cause of death was later reported as "multiple drug toxicity" in the form of cocaine and heroin. He recorded three comedy albums: "Strategic Grill Locations," "Mitch All Together" and "Do You Believe in Gosh?," the last released posthumously.
2004: The Republic of Ireland becomes the first country in the world to ban smoking in all work places, including bars and restaurants.
1999: Wayne Gretzky of the New York Rangers scores the last of his National Hockey League record 894 regular season goals in a home game against the New York Islanders. The goal was one of only nine "The Great One" scored in his 20th and final NHL season.
1998: The University of Tennessee wins the NCAA woman's college basketball championship over Louisiana Tech 93-75, winning their sixth title and completing an unprecedented undefeated season at 39-0.
1996: Twelve years to the day after the NFL's Baltimore Colts left for Indianapolis in the dead of night, the relocated Cleveland Browns choose the Baltimore Ravens as the team's new name. The name alludes to the famous poem "The Raven" by Edgar Allan Poe, who spent the early part of his career in Baltimore and is also buried there. By an earlier agreement between owner Art Modell, the NFL and the city of Cleveland, Modell relinquished ownership of the Browns' name, colors, logos and history, paving the way for a new Cleveland Browns team that resumed play in 1999.
1992: Democratic presidential front-runner Bill Clinton acknowledges experimenting with marijuana "a time or two" while attending Oxford University, adding, "I didn't inhale and I didn't try it again."
1985: Madonna's first film, "Desperately Seeking Susan," premieres in theaters.
1984: Owner Robert Irsay moves the NFL's Baltimore Colts to Indianapolis, with 15 Mayflower moving trucks transporting all of the team's belongings in the early morning hours to beat an eminent domain bill at the Maryland State Legislature that would have seized ownership of the team and prevented it from moving.
1982: At the 54th Academy Awards, Henry Fonda wins the only competitive Oscar of his career, winning Best Actor for "On Golden Pond." At 76 years old, Fonda became the oldest winner in the Best Actor category in Academy history. The only other nomination he received in his career was Best Actor for his performance in "The Grapes of Wrath" 41 years earlier -- a record gap between acting nominations. His co-star, Katharine Hepburn, won her fourth Best Actress award at the ceremony, beating her own record for most Best Actress wins by any actress. While "On Golden Pond" was also nominated for Best Picture, it lost out to "Chariots of Fire."
1982: The song "Ebony and Ivory" by Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney is released as a single. The song would go on to reach No. 1 on both the UK and the U.S. charts.
1980: Annunzio Paolo Mantovani, the English-Italian conductor and light orchestra-styled entertainer known simply as Mantovani, dies at the age of 74 in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, England. Mantovani was Britain's most successful album act before The Beatles, known for his "cascading strings" effect. Between 1955 and 1972, he released more than 40 albums in the United States, with 27 reaching the Top 40.
1979: The U.S. House Select Committee on Assassinations issues a report stating the assassination of President John F. Kennedy was the result of a conspiracy.
1978: After a year in court, Tina Turner is officially divorced from husband Ike. In the divorce, she completely parted ways with him, retaining only her stage name and assuming responsibility for debts incurred by a tour canceled when she fled Ike in July 1976 as well as a significant Internal Revenue Service lien.
1976: Jennifer Capriati, a former World No. 1 professional tennis player and the winner of three women's singles championships in Grand Slam tournaments, is born in New York City. Capriati made her professional debut in 1990 at the age of 13 years, 11 months and later became the youngest ever player to crack the top 10 at age 14 years, 235 days.
1975: Led Zeppelin becomes the first band in history to have six albums on Billboard's top-200 album chart at once, with their first five albums joining their new release, "Physical Graffiti," which reached No. 1 a month after its release.
1974: Eight Ohio National Guardsmen are indicted on charges stemming from the shooting deaths of four unarmed students during a Vietnam War protest at Kent State University on May 4, 1970. A judge would later dismiss all charges on the basis that the prosecution's case was too weak to warrant a trial. This printed map detailing the locations of structures, troop movements, bullet hole locations, and locations of casualties at the Kent State shooting was produced by President Richard Nixon's Commission on Campus Unrest.
1974: Local farmers in Lintong District, Xi'an, Shaanxi province, China, discover the Terracotta Army that was buried with Qin Shi Huang, the first Emperor of China, in the 3rd century BC. The figures, including more than 8,000 warriors, 130 chariots with 520 horses and 150 cavalry horses, were designed to protect the emperor in his afterlife.
1974: NASA's Mariner 10 becomes the first spaceprobe to fly by Mercury. This mosaic of Mercury was taken by the spacecraft during its approach. The mosaic consists of 18 images taken at 42-second intervals during a 13-minute period when Mariner 10 was about 124,000 miles from the planet.
1973: The last United States combat soldiers leave South Vietnam during the Vietnam War.
1971: A Los Angeles jury recommends the death penalty for Charles Manson and three female followers who had earlier been convicted of the 1969 Tate-LaBianca murders. However, their sentences would be automatically reduced to life in prison when the California Supreme Court abolished the state's death penalty in February 1972.
1971: Lt. William Calley is convicted of the premeditated murder of 22 Vietnamese civilians for his role in the My Lai Massacre, the March 16, 1968, mass murder of between 347 and 504 unarmed civilians in South Vietnam by United States Army soldiers. Testimony revealed that Calley had ordered the men of 1st Platoon, Company C, 1st Battalion, 20th Infantry of the 23rd Infantry Division to kill everyone in the village despite the fact that his men were not under enemy fire at all. Two days later, Calley was sentenced to life imprisonment and hard labor at Fort Leavenworth, a sentence that was later reduced to 20 years and then 10 years. Ultimately, he would serve only three and a half years of house arrest in his quarters at Fort Benning before being released.
1968: Actress Lucy Lawless, best known for playing the title character of the television series "Xena: Warrior Princess," is born in Mount Albert, Auckland, New Zealand. Lawless is also famous for roles in the TV series "Battlestar Galactica" and "Spartacus."
1964: Model and actress Elle Macpherson, well known for her record five cover appearances for the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue beginning in the 1980s, is born Eleanor Nancy Gow in Sydney, Australia.
1962: Jack Paar makes his final appearance as host of "The Tonight Show." He would eventually be succeeded by Johnny Carson, who made his "Tonight Show" debut on Oct. 1, 1962, with temporary hosts, including Groucho Marx, Merv Griffin, Bill Cullen, Jerry Lewis and Mort Sahl, filling in between Paar and Carson.
1961: The 23rd Amendment to the United States Constitution is ratified, allowing residents of Washington, D.C., to vote in presidential elections.
1959: Singer-songwriter Perry Farrell, best known as a member of the bands Jane's Addiction and Porno for Pyros and for creating the music festival Lollapalooza, is born Peretz Bernstein in New York City.
1959: The comedy "Some Like it Hot," starring Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon and Marilyn Monroe, and directed by Billy Wilder, premieres in theaters. The film, which was one of the biggest box office hits of the year, is widely considered one of the greatest comedies ever made. It won an Academy Award for its costumes and was nominated for five more, including Best Actor for Lemmon and Best Director for Wilder. It also won the Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture - Comedy, with Monroe and Lemmon also winning Golden Globes for their roles.
1958: Elvis Presley begins boot camp in Ft. Hood, Texas, where he would be stationed for six months and insisted on doing KP and guard duty just like the other soldiers.
1957: The New York, Ontario and Western Railway makes its final run, becoming the first major U.S. railroad to be abandoned in its entirety.
1957: Actor Christopher Lambert, best known for his role as Connor MacLeod in the "Highlander" movie franchise, is born in Great Neck, New York. He's also known for his roles in the movies "Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes" and "Mortal Kombat."
1955: Actress Brendan Gleeson, best known for movies such as "Braveheart," "Gangs of New York," "In Bruges," "28 Days Later," the "Harry Potter" films and "The Guard," is born in Dublin, Ireland.
1955: Pro Football Hall of Fame running back and Heisman Trophy winner Earl Campbell is born in Tyler, Texas. Campbell, who is also an inductee of the College Football Hall of Fame, led the nation in rushing in 1977 with 1,744 yards for the University of Texas and was picked first overall in the 1978 NFL Draft by the Houston Oilers. He earned NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year honors in 1978 and went on to a career that saw five Pro Bowls and career totals of 9,407 yards and 74 touchdowns rushing along with 806 yards on 121 receptions.
1951: Ethel and Julius Rosenberg are convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage during a time of war. The couple, who had been accused of passing information about the atomic bomb to the Soviet Union, would be executed on June 19, 1953, becoming the only two American civilians to be executed for espionage-related activity during the Cold War.
1945: Hall of Fame basketball player Walt Frazier, who led the New York Knicks to the franchise's only two NBA Championships in 1970 and 1973, is born in Atlanta, Georgia. The seven-time NBA All-Star played 10 seasons with the Knicks before ending his career with three seasons for the Cleveland Cavaliers.
1945: During World War II, the last German V-1 flying bomb hits England, striking a field near the village of Datchworth in Hertfordshire. The attack was the last enemy-action incident of any kind on British soil. Here a German crew can be seen rolling out a V-1 bomb for launch in 1944.
1943: Actor, writer and composer Eric Idle, best known as a member of the Monty Python comedy team (seen here third from right), is born in South Shields, Tyne and Wear, England. Idle is also known as a member of the Beatles parody band The Rutles and as the author of the Broadway musical "Spamalot."
1942: Actor Scott Wilson, best known for his TV roles in "The Walking Dead" and "CSI," and movie roles in "In the Heat of the Night," "In Cold Blood," "The Great Gatsby" (1974), "The Ninth Configuration" and "Dead Man Walking," is born in Atlanta, Georgia.
1919: The Stanley Cup playoff series between the NHL's Montreal Canadiens and the PCHA's Seattle Metropolitans is suspended after five games due to an outbreak of influenza. Montreal and Seattle had each won two games with one tie in the series. It was the only time in the history of the Stanley Cup that it was not awarded due to a no-decision after playoffs were held.
1918: Sam Walton, the businessman who founded the retailers Walmart and Sam's Club, is born in Kingfisher, Oklahoma. Walton, seen here in the David H. Hickman High School yearbook in 1936, died of multiple myeloma, a type of blood cancer, at the age of 74 on April 5, 1992.
1918: Actress and singer Pearl Bailey, best known for her Broadway work and roles in movies like "Carmen Jones," "Porgy and Bess" and "St. Louis Blues," is born in Southampton County, Virginia. Bailey also had her own television show during the 1970s and provided voices for animated works such as "Tubby the Tuba" and Disney's "The Fox and the Hound." She died of arteriosclerotic coronary artery disease at age 72 on Aug. 17, 1990.
1917: Man o' War, considered one of the greatest Thoroughbred racehorses of all time, is born in Lexington, Kentucky. During his career just after World War I, Man o' War won 20 of 21 races and $249,465 in purses. Man o' War was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 1957 and has been ranked as the No. 1 horse of the 20th century by both Blood-Horse magazine and The Associated Press.
1891: Georges Seurat, the French Post-Impressionist painter and draftsman known for his innovative use of drawing media and for devising the technique of painting known as pointillism, dies at the age of 31 in Paris, France. The cause of his death is uncertain, and has been variously attributed to a form of meningitis, pneumonia, infectious angina and diphtheria. Seurat's "A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte" is one of the icons of late 19th-century painting.
1886: The first batch of what would become known as Coca-Cola is brewed over a fire in a backyard in Atlanta, Georgia. Dr. John Pemberton (pictured) created the concoction as a cure for hangovers, stomach ache and headache. He advertised it as a "brain tonic and intellectual beverage," and first sold it to the public a few weeks later on May 8.
1882: The Knights of Columbus, the world's largest Catholic fraternal service organization, is established.
1871: The Royal Albert Hall is opened by Queen Victoria.
1867: Hall of Fame baseball pitcher Cy Young, considered one of the greatest pitchers ever to play the game, is born in Gilmore, Ohio. Young would earn 511 wins in his career, the most in major-league history. The Cy Young Award was created one year after his death in 1955 to honor the previous season's best MLB pitcher.
1865: In the Battle of Lewis's Farm, Union forces under Maj. Gen. Philip Sheridan (pictured) move to flank Confederate forces under Gen. Robert E. Lee as the Appomattox Campaign begins. The campaign would culminate in the surrender of Lee's Army of Northern Virginia and the effective end of the American Civil War.
1848: German-American businessman John Jacob Astor, the first multi-millionaire in the United States, dies at the age of 84 in Manhattan, New York. Astor moved to the United States following the American Revolutionary War and built a fur-trading empire expanding across the country before diversifying into New York City real estate in the early 1800s. At the time of his death, he was the wealthiest person in the America, leaving an estate estimated to be worth at least $20 million.
1806: Construction is authorized of the Great National Pike, better known as the Cumberland Road, becoming the first United States federal highway. The approximately 620-mile long National Road provided a connection between the Potomac and Ohio rivers and a gateway to the West for thousands of settlers.
1795: Ludwig van Beethoven debuts as a pianist in Vienna, Austria, at the age of 24.
1792: King Gustav III of Sweden dies after being shot in the back at a midnight masquerade ball at Stockholm's Royal Opera 13 days earlier. He is succeeded by 14-year-old Gustav IV Adolf.
1790: John Tyler, who would become the 10th president of the United States 1841, is born in Charles City County, Virginia.