ON THIS DAY: March 1, 2020

March 1st is

UN Zero Discrimination Day *

Peanut Butter Lover’s Day

Horse Protection Day

National Pig Day *

World Civil Defense Day *

Black Women in Jazz & the Arts Day

March is National Women’s History Month in the U.S. *


MORE! Merlie Evers-Williams, Chuck Berry and Lupita Nyong’o, click



Australia – Augusta: Augusta River Festival

Bosnia & Herzegovina – Independence Day

Bulgaria – Baba Marta Day *

Canada –Rockton: Maple Syrup Festival

Chile – Santa Cruz: Fiesta de la
Vendimia de Colchagua (vintage regional fest)

Costa Rica – San José:
Festival de las Artes

Ethiopia – Addis Ababa: Kids’ Fest

France – Tourrettes-sur-Loup:
Violet Festival

Germany – Stuttgart:
Retro Classics (classic vehicles)

Iceland – Bjórdagurinn (Beer Day –
Prohibition in 1989 ends after 74 years)

India – Jaipur: Dunes Music Festival

Iraqi Kurdistan – Mustafa Barazi Memorial Day *

Kenya – Shela: Lamu Yoga Festival

Marshall Islands – Nuclear Victims Memorial

Micronesia – Yap Day (Yapese Cultural Celebration)

Paraguay – National Heroes’ Day

Philippines – Baguio: Panagbenga
Festival (flower festival)

Poland – “Cursed Soldiers” Remembrance Day *

Singapore – Singapore Garden Festival
& Orchid Show

South Africa – Cape Town:
Bonfire Festival (music & fire juggling)

South Korea – Samil Day *

Spain – Balearic Islands: Día de las Islas Baleares

Switzerland – Republic Day

United Kingdom – Manchester:
Manchester Song Festival

Wales – St. David’s Day (Patron Saint of Wales)


On This Day in HISTORY

Original date unknown – Baba Marta Day *(Granny March) is a Bulgarian mythical figure who brings the end of the cold winter. March 1 is celebrated as her holiday with the exchange and wearing of martenitsi, red-and-white interwoven strings for health and happiness, worn usually on the wrist, until the first stork is seen, a traditional symbol of the beginning of spring. The Bulgarian Society for Protection of Birds does an annual census of white storks in Bulgaria during the summer months

752 BC – Romulus, legendary King of Rome, is said to have celebrated the first Roman triumph after defeating neighboring Caenina. The legend says Romulus proclaimed a festival of Neptune Equester and invited all the neighboring states to attend, and then during the festival the Romans grabbed ‘the virgins’ (were they wearing ‘I’m a Virgin’ signs?) among the visitors, and drove the rest out of the city, know historically as The Rape of the Sabine Women. The Rape (used here in the sense of abduction, but probably the other meaning also applies) was staged because Rome was very short of women, and negotiations for brides with the Caeninenses, the Crustumini, and Antemnates, and the Sabines had failed. The historian Livy makes the unlikely claim that no direct sexual assault (what constitutes indirect sexual assault?) took place, but that Romulus offered the women free choice and promised them civic and property rights; if such promises were made, they don’t seem to have been kept. In the early days of Rome, a girl of 15-18 went directly from her father’s control to her husband’s, while the groom chosen for her was likely to be at least in his mid-to-late 20s. Even though technically she could not be forced to marry, the repercussions of not consenting were too daunting for most young women to resist. Legend says when the Sabines marched on Rome, the captured Sabine women, now Roman brides, threw themselves between the warring armies, begging their fathers, brothers and husbands to make peace, and so the Sabines merged with the Romans

The Rape of the Sabine Women by Pietro da Cortona

293 – Emperor Diocletian and Maximian appoint Constantius Chlorus and Galerius as Caesars: the Tetrarchy, Quattuor Principes Mundi (“Four Rulers of the World”)

589 – St. David’s Day * is the traditional date of his death; Welsh bishop of Mynyw (now St. Davids), renowned as a teacher and orator, who founded monastic settlements and churches in Wales; the Monastic Rule of David prescribed that monks had to pull the plough themselves without draft animals, must drink only water and eat only bread with salt and herbs, and spend the evenings in prayer, reading and writing. No personal possessions were allowed: even to say “my book” was considered an offence. He lived a simple life, and taught his followers to stop eating meat and drinking beer. His symbol, also the symbol of Wales, is the leek. Saint David is the patron saint of Wales, vegetarians and poets

Symbols of Wales: the daffodil, the leek and the Welsh flag 

1360 – During the siege of Rheims, English King Edward III pays ₤16 to ransom soldier Geoffrey Chaucer from French captivity

1445 – Sandro Botticelli born, Italian Early Renaissance painter

1457 – The Unitas Fratrum is established in the village of Kunvald, on the Bohemian-Moravian borderland, the second oldest Protestant denomination

1498 – Vasco de Gama lands at what is now Mozambique on his way to India

1510 – Francisco de Almeida, after serving as viceroy of the Portuguese State of India (1505-1509) is returning home with three ships, the Garcia, Belém and Santa Cruz, when they drop anchor near South Africa’s Cape of Good Hope to replenish their water supply. They trade iron with the Khoikhoi people for some cattle, but the cordial relations come to an abrupt end when 12 Portuguese sailors go to the Khoikhoi village and try to steal more cattle. The enraged villagers chase the thieves back to their ships, where the sailors beg Almeida to take revenge on the Khoikhoi who defended their cattle. Although Almeida admitted that his men were to blame, he still leads a party of 150 men armed with swords, lances and crossbows on a raiding party. They attempt to seize a number of children and cattle, but about 170 Khoikhoi warriors fight back with stones and assegais (iron-tipped wooden spears), using their cattle as shields. The warriors rout the raiders, and kill 64 of them, including Almeida and 11 of his captains

painting by Pieter van der Aa – circa 1707-1708

1562 – The First French War of Religion is started by the massacre of Huguenots in Wassy

1565 – The city of Rio de Janeiro is founded in Brazil by Estácio de Sá as São Sebastião do Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janiero, circa 1695

1683 – Caroline of Brandenburg-Ansbach born, Queen consort of Great Britain and Ireland, and Electress consort of Hanover, married to King George II, noted for her political alliance with leading British minister Robert Walpole, and her major influence over policy, including more freedom of the press and of speech in Parliament, and urging clemency for the Jacobites. She was made temporary regent for five months in 1729 while her husband was attending to duties in Hanover, during which she helped defuse a diplomatic crisis over the Portuguese seizure of a British ship, and pressed for reform of the penal system, after an investigation revealed widespread abuses, but was unable to gain any major changes to the outdated system. She was far more intellectual and more widely read than her husband, who often listened to her council, and was a notable patron of the arts and letters. She was widely mourned in the British Isles when she died, by Protestants for her moral example, and even by many Jacobites because of her intervention for mercy toward their compatriots. King George II refused to remarry

1692 – Sarah Good, Sarah Osborne and Tituba are brought before local magistrates in Salem Village MA, beginning the Salem witch trials

1781 – Javiera Carrera born, Chilean activist in the War of Independence, credited with sewing the first national flag, called the “Mother of Chile”

1790 – Congress authorizes the first U.S. census

1805 – Samuel Chase, Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court (1796-1811), impeached by the U.S. House of Representatives on eight counts of letting partisanship affect his court decisions, is acquitted on all eight counts, and remained on the court. He is the only U.S. Supreme Court justice who has ever been impeached

1810 – Frédéric Chopin born, Poland’s greatest composer, child prodigy

1816 – Missão Artística Francesa, the French Artistic Mission in Brazil (exact date of arrival not listed), a group of French artists and architects arrive in Rio de Janeiro, at the time capital of the United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil and the Algarves, under the auspices of the royal court of Portugal, which had fled to Brazil in 1808 when Napoleon invaded Portugal. The purpose of the group was to found the Escola Real de Ciências, Artes e Ofícios (Royal School of Sciences, Arts and Crafts), which later became the Escola Nacional de Belas Artes (National School of Fine Arts). In 1936, a similar group, with the support of anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss, came to help with programs of the new Arts departments at Universidade de São Paulo (the University of São Paulo), the largest public university in Brazil, originally established in 1934

1845 – U.S. President Tyler signs Congress’ resolution to annex the Republic of Texas

1862 – Prussia formally recognizes the Kingdom of Italy

1869 – Postage stamps with scenes are issued for the first time

1869 3 cent pictorial stamp – Locomotive

1872 – U.S. Congress authorizes creation of Yellowstone National Park, the world’s first national park

1873 – E. Remington & Sons begin manufacturing the first practical typewriter

1879 – The library of Hawaii is established

1880 – Lytton Strachey born, English biographer and critic

1890 – Theresa Bernstein-Meyerowitz born in Poland, American Jewish artist and writer; co-founder of the Society of Independent Artists

The Art Party, by Theresa Bernstein-Meyerowitz

1893 – Mercedes de Acosta born, American author, poet, and playwright; she was more admired for her decorative taste and elegance than for her writing, and had several lesbian relationships with well-known performers from Broadway and Hollywood, including Alla Nazimova, Isadora Duncan, Eva Le Gallienne, Marlene Dietrich, and most famously with Greta Garbo. She was a tireless advocate for women’s rights, studied Hindu mysticism for several years, became a vegetarian, and refused to wear fur coats or any fur on her clothing

1904 – Glenn Miller born, influential American ‘Big Band’ leader

1907 – In Odessa, Russia, there are only about 15,000 Jews after forced evacuations

1907 – In Spain, a royal decree abolishes civil marriages

1907 – In New York, the Salvation Army opens an anti-suicide bureau

1914 – Ralph Ellison born, American novelist; wins 1952 National Book Award for The Invisible Man

1917 – Robert Lowell born, American poet

1918 – Gladys Spellman born, American teacher and Democratic politician, appointed in 1967 to President Lyndon Johnson’s Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Affairs; U.S. Congressional Representative from Maryland (1975-1981)

1919 – Samil Day* in South Korea, anniversary of the Samil Movement demonstrations across Korea rallying for independence from Japan, which had annexed on the country in 1910; a proclamation of Korea’s independence is read by movement leaders, who turn themselves into the Japanese police; days of continuing protests and marches follow, which are mostly non-violent by the Koreans, but met with deadly force and thousands of arrests by the Japanese; the opposition falters, but muted opposition continues under a new Japanese governor who rolls back some restrictions, and allows limited Korean representation; the Korean Communist Party is founded in 1920, and splits off  from the Samil movement, eventually leading to dividing the country into North and South Korea

1922 – Yitzhak Rabin born, the Israeli prime minister, works for peace with Palestinian and Arab neighbors

1927 – Harry Belafonte born, American music star, singer-songwriter, civil rights and social justice activist

1932 – The 22-month-old son of Charles and Anne Lindbergh is kidnapped

1933 – Merlie Evers-Williams born, civil rights activist and author, wife of Medgar Evers; first woman to head the NAACP (1995-1998)

1934 – Joan Hackett born, American stage, film and television actress; noted for her performances in The Group, Will Penny and The Last of Sheila; active supporter of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA); died of ovarian cancer at age 49 – her epitaph reads: “Go Away – I’m Asleep”

1937 – U.S. Steel raises workers’ wages to $5 a day

1939 – Leo Brouwer born, Cuban composer-conductor and classical guitarist

1940 – The novel Native Son by Richard Wright is published

1941 – FM Radio begins in Nashville TN, when station W47NV goes on the air

1945 – Nancy Woodhull born, editor of USA Today (1975-1990), advocate for women in public and private sector leadership positions; founded “Women, Men and Media,” a research and outreach project, with Betty Friedan (1988)

1947 – The International Monetary Fund begins operations

1949 – Samil Day * becomes a public holiday in South Korea (see also 1919 entry)

1950 – Klaus Fuchs is convicted of giving U.S. atomic secrets to the Soviet Union

1952 – Nevada Barr born, American mystery novelist, noted for her national parks mystery series featuring Anna Pigeon

1952 – Jerri Lin Nielson born, American physician; after discovering a breast tumor while working in Antarctica in 1998, she self-administered a biopsy, and later chemotherapy, using supplies that had to be parachuted to her. In spite of weather delays which caused her evacuation to be several weeks later than planned, she survived the ordeal, and co-wrote Ice Bound: A Doctor’s Incredible Story of Survival at the South Pole. But in 2005, the cancer recurred and metastasized, spreading to her brain. She died in 2009 at age 57

1954 – U.S. announces it set off a hydrogen bomb test on the Bikini Atoll

1956 – Dalia Grybauskaitė born, Lithuanian politician; first woman President of Lithuania, elected in 2009, and re-elected in 2014, the first Lithuanian President reelected for a consecutive second term; previously Minister of Finance and European Commissioner for Financial Programming and the Budget (2004 – 2009)

1957 – Chuck Berry releases his hit single “School Days”

1961 – President John F. Kennedy issues an executive order creating the Peace Corps, enlisting volunteers as advisers, teachers and health workers in developing countries

1966 – The Soviet probe, Venera 3, crashes on Venus, the first unmanned spacecraft to reach the surface of another planet

1966 – Ghana orders all Soviet, East German and Chinese technicians to leave

1968 – Elton John’s first single, “I’ve Been Loving You,” is released in England

1970 – U.S. commercial whale hunting ends

1971 – A bomb explodes in a Senate restroom, but there were no injuries; a  U.S. group protesting the Vietnam War claims responsibility

1972 – National Pig Day * is started by sisters Ellen Stanley and Mary Lynne Rave, to celebrate all things porcine

1973 – Pink Floyd releases “Dark Side of the Moon”

1973 – The Robert Joffrey Dance Company debuts the Deuce Coupe Ballet, with music by The Beach Boys

1974 – Seven people, including White House aides John D. Ehrlichman and  H.R. Haldeman, and former Attorney General John Mitchell, are indicted for conspiring to obstruct justice after the Watergate break-in

1978 – Women’s History Week is first observed in Sonoma County, California, begun as a modest proposal by the Education Task Force of the Sonoma County Commission on the Status of Women, for the week leading up to International Women’s Day, March 8th – it inspires Women’s History events all over the country, and grows into National Women’s History Month (see also 1987 entry)

Molly Murphy MacGregor, one of the founders of Women’s History Week,
with an Eleanor Roosevelt poster in the background

1979 – Mustafa Barazi Memorial Day * – Kurdish leader Mustafa Barzani, who fought for Kurdish independence for over 40 years, dies at age 75, in Georgetown University Hospital, Washington DC, while undergoing treatment for lung cancer

Mustafa Barzani in 1947

1983 – Lupita Nyong’o born in Mexico City, of Kenyan parents, Kenyan actress; noted for Twelve Years a Slave, for which she won 2014’s Best Supporting Actress Oscar, and Black Panther; activist for women’s rights, against sexual harassment, for diversity and for prevention of cruelty to animals

1987 – The U.S. Congress passes a resolution permanently designating March as National Women’s History Month *  (see also 1978 entry)

1987 – The British Anti-Apartheid Movement launches an international boycott of the Shell corporation

1988 – Soviet troops are sent to Azerbaijan after riots between Armenians and Azerbaijanis

1989 – In Washington DC, Mayor Barry and the City council impose a curfew on minors

1990 – Civil Defense Day * is started by the International Civil Defense Organization, commemorating the ICDO Constitution coming into force as an intergovernmental organization in 1972

1992 – Bosnian Muslims and Croats vote to secede from Yugoslavia

1993 – The U.S. government announces the number of food stamp recipients reached a record number of 26.6 million

1994 – Israel releases about 500 Arab prisoners in an effort to placate Palestinians after the Hebron massacre

1995 – The European Parliament rejects legislation that would allow biotechnology companies to patent new life forms

1995 – Yahoo! is incorporated

1999 – Rwandan Hutu rebels, angered by American and British support of the Tutsi government in Rwanda, kill four Bwindi National Park rangers, then abduct foreign tourists from an expedition to see rare mountain gorillas in the Ugandan rain forest, and hack to death eight of them: two Americans, four British nationals and two citizens of New Zealand

2002 – Allied forces begin Operation Anaconda in eastern Afghanistan against Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters

2003 – A $250,000 Salvador Dali sketch is stolen from a display case in the lobby at NY’s Rikers Island jail; later four corrections officers surrender, pleading innocent in connection to the theft

2003 – In the U.S., approximately 180,000 personnel from 22 different government entities become part of the Department of Homeland Security, completing the largest government reorganization since the beginning of the Cold War

2003 – Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, suspected mastermind behind the 9-11 terrorist attacks on the U.S., is captured by CIA and Pakistani agents near Islamabad

2005 –Supreme Court narrowly outlaws the death penalty for juvenile criminals

2011 – “Cursed Soldiers” Remembrance Day * established – WWII Polish resistance fighters who were anti-Soviet and anti-Communist; later members of Polish Underground State after the war ended, fighting the communist regime which took over Poland. By the late 1950s, almost all of them had been hunted down by agents of the Ministry of Public Security and Soviet NKVD assassination squads. The rise of the independent trade union Solidarność ( Solidarity) in the 1980s, led by electrician Lech Wałęsa, led to the 1989 election, when Solidarność candidates captured all but one seat in the newly established Polish Senate, and 35% of the seats in the Sejm, the lower house of Parliament

2014 – Zero Discrimination Day * is launched by UNAIDS to end all forms of discrimination in healthcare, education, employment and civil rights for all people

2018 – Maria Contreras-Sweet, head of the Small Business Administration (2014-2017) under President Barack Obama, announced she had reached a $500 million deal to buy assets of The Weinstein Company, which was facing possible bankruptcy after sexual assault and harassment allegations brought down its co-founder, Harvey Weinstein. The Weinstein Company’s board confirmed it had come to terms with investors led by Contreras-Sweet and supermarket billionaire Ron Burkle. Contreras-Sweet said the new company would have a majority-female board tasked with rebuilding the film studio. She said relaunching the company would save 150 jobs and protect small businesses that are owed money.  But the deal collapsed on March 6, 2018, after an additional debt of $50 million was uncovered that the Weinstein Company had failed to disclose. The company’s assets, a library of 270 films, were finally bought by newly-formed Lantern Entertainment in July 2018 for $289 million

Maria Contreras-Sweet


About wordcloud9

Nona Blyth Cloud has lived and worked in the Los Angeles area for over 50 years, spending much of that time commuting on the 405 Freeway. After Hollywood failed to appreciate her genius for acting and directing, she began a second career managing non-profits, from which she has retired. Nona has now resumed writing whatever comes into her head, instead of reports and pleas for funding. She lives in a small house overrun by books with her wonderful husband.
This entry was posted in History, Holidays, On This Day and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.