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Today in History

Saturday March 16, 2002

This is Saturday, March 16, the 75th day of 2002. There are 290 days left in the year. 


Highlight in History: 

Two hundred years ago, on March 16, 1802, Congress authorized the establishment of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y. 


On this date: 

In 1751, James Madison, fourth president of the United States, was born in Port Conway, Va. 

In 1836, the Republic of Texas approved a constitution. 

In 1850, “The Scarlet Letter,” Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel about adultery, revenge and redemption in Puritan Massachusetts, was first published. 

In 1915, the Federal Trade Commission was organized. 

In 1935, Adolf Hitler scrapped the Treaty of Versailles. 

In 1945, during World War II, Iwo Jima was declared secured by the Allies. 

In 1968, during the Vietnam War, the My Lai Massacre was carried out by U.S. troops under the command of Lt. William L. Calley Jr. 

In 1978, Italian politician Aldo Moro was kidnapped by left-wing urban guerrillas, who later murdered him. 

In 1982, Claus Von Bulow was found guilty in Newport, R.I., of trying to kill his now-comatose wife, Martha, with insulin (Von Bulow was acquitted in a retrial). 

In 1985, Terry Anderson, chief Middle East correspondent for The Associated Press, was abducted in Beirut; he was released in December 1991. 

Ten years ago: Robert J. Eaton, head of General Motors’ profitable European operations, joined Chrysler Corp. as Chairman Lee Iacocca’s future successor. 

Five years ago: At the request of a hobbled President Clinton, Russia’s Boris Yeltsin agreed to delay their upcoming summit by one day to give Clinton an extra day to recuperate from knee surgery. Jordan’s King Hussein knelt in mourning with the families of seven Israeli schoolgirls gunned down by a Jordanian soldier. 

One year ago: Rap impresario Sean “Puffy” Combs was acquitted in New York of taking an illegal handgun into a crowded Manhattan hip-hop club where three people were later wounded; he was also cleared of trying to bribe his way out of trouble. Combs’ bodyguard, Anthony “Wolf” Jones, was acquitted of the same charges. Saudi commandos freed surviving hostages and ended the hijacking of a Russian plane by armed Chechens that resulted in the deaths of a flight attendant, a hijacker and a passenger. 




Birthdays: Actor Leo McKern is 82. Comedian-director Jerry Lewis is 76. Former Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, D-N.Y., is 75. Movie director Bernardo Bertolucci is 61. Game show host Chuck Woolery is 61. Singer-songwriter Jerry Jeff Walker is 60. Country singer Robin Williams is 55. Actor Erik Estrada is 53. Actor Victor Garber is 53. Actress Kate Nelligan is 51. Country singer Ray Benson (Asleep at the Wheel) is 51. Rock singer-musician Nancy Wilson (Heart) is 48. Golfer Hollis Stacy is 48. Actress Isabelle Huppert is 47. Rapper Flavor Flav (Public Enemy) is 43. Actress Lauren Graham is 35.