TodayInHistory

Today is Tuesday, March 10, the 70th day of 2020. There are 296 days left in the year.

Today’s highlight in history

On March 10, 1985, Konstantin U. Chernenko, who was the Soviet Union’s leader for 13 months, died at age 73; he was succeeded by Mikhail Gorbachev.

On this date

In 1496, Christopher Columbus concluded his second visit to the Western Hemisphere as he left Hispaniola for Spain.

In 1848, the U.S. Senate ratified the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, which ended the Mexican-American War.

In 1864, President Abraham Lincoln assigned Ulysses S. Grant, who had just received his commission as lieutenant-general, to the command of the Armies of the United States.

In 1876, Alexander Graham Bell‘s assistant, Thomas Watson, heard Bell say over his experimental telephone: “Mr. Watson — come here — I want to see you” from the next room of Bell’s Boston laboratory.

In 1906, about 1,100 miners in northern France were killed by a coal-dust explosion.

In 1913, former slave, abolitionist and Underground Railroad “conductor” Harriet Tubman died in Auburn, N.Y.; she was in her 90s.

In 1933, a magnitude 6.4 earthquake centered off Long Beach, Calif., resulted in 120 deaths.

In 1969, James Earl Ray pleaded guilty in Memphis, Tenn., (on his 41st birthday) to assassinating civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. (Ray later repudiated that plea, maintaining his innocence until his death.)

In 2004, teenage sniper Lee Boyd Malvo was sentenced in Chesapeake, Va., to life in prison for his role in the October 2002 killing rampage in the Washington, D.C., area that left 10 people dead.

Ten years ago

President Barack Obama denounced waste, inefficiency and downright fraud in the government’s health care system as he sought to rally public support for his revamped overhaul plan during a rally in suburban St. Louis.

Five years ago

Breaking her silence in the face of a growing controversy over her use of a private email address and server, Hillary Rodham Clinton conceded that she should have used government email as secretary of state but insisted she had not violated any federal laws or Obama administration rules.

One year ago

A Boeing 737 Max 8 operated by Ethiopian Airlines crashed shortly after taking off from the capital, Addis Ababa, killing all 157 people on board; the crash was similar to one in October in which a 737 Max 8 flown by Indonesia’s Lion Air plunged into the Java Sea minutes after takeoff, killing all 189 people on the plane.

(The aircraft would be grounded worldwide after the two disasters, bringing fierce criticism to Boeing over the design and rollout of the jetliner.)

Today’s birthdays

Actor Chuck Norris is 80.

Rock musician Tom Scholz (Boston) is 73.

Actress Sharon Stone is 62.

Britain’s Prince Edward is 56.

Olympic gold medal gymnast Shannon Miller is 43.

Country singer Carrie Underwood is 37.

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