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Today in History — March 28

March 28, 2014

By the Associated Press


Today is Friday, March 28, the 87th day of 2014. There are 278 days left in the year.


Today’s Highlight in History:


On March 28, 1939, the Spanish Civil War neared its end as Madrid fell to the forces of Francisco Franco.


On this date:


In 1834, the U.S. Senate voted to censure President Andrew Jackson for the removal of federal deposits from the Bank of the United States.


In 1854, during the Crimean War, Britain and France declared war on Russia.


In 1898, the Supreme Court, in United States v. Wong Kim Ark, ruled that a child born in the United States to Chinese immigrants was a U.S. citizen.


In 1914, U.S. Senator and Secretary of State Edmund Muskie was born in Rumford, Maine.


In 1930, the names of the Turkish cities of Constantinople and Angora were changed to Istanbul and Ankara.


In 1935, the notorious Nazi propaganda film “Triumph des Willens” (Triumph of the Will), directed by Leni Riefenstahl, premiered in Berlin with Adolf Hitler present.


In 1941, novelist and critic Virginia Woolf, 59, drowned herself near her home in Lewes, East Sussex, England.


In 1943, composer Sergei Rachmaninoff died in Beverly Hills, Calif.


In 1969, the 34th president of the United States, Dwight D. Eisenhower, died in Washington, D.C. at age 78.


In 1979, America’s worst commercial nuclear accident occurred with a partial meltdown inside the Unit 2 reactor at the Three Mile Island plant near Middletown, Pa.


In 1990, President George H.W. Bush presented the Congressional Gold Medal to the widow of U.S. Olympic legend Jesse Owens.


In 1994, absurdist playwright Eugene Ionesco died in Paris at age 84.


Ten years ago: French President Jacques Chirac’s (zhahk shih-RAHKS’) government suffered stinging defeats in regional elections seen as a vote of censure against painful economic reforms. Actor and writer Sir Peter Ustinov died in Genolier, Switzerland, at age 82. Game show host Art James died in Palm Springs, Calif., at age 74.


Five years ago: Fears in Fargo, N.D., of a catastrophic flood eased with word that the surging Red River had crested at lower-than-expected levels. Nearly 4,000 cities and towns in 88 countries switched off nonessential lights for Earth Hour to highlight the threat of climate change. Thousands of people marched through European cities to demand jobs, economic justice and environmental accountability. Shuttle Discovery and its crew of seven returned to Earth, ending a 13-day voyage to install a pair of solar wings on the international space station. Film composer Maurice Jarre, 84, died in Malibu, Calif.


One year ago: President Barack Obama, flanked by grim-faced mothers who’d lost their children to guns, urged lawmakers not to “get squishy” in the face of powerful forces against gun control legislation. Anxious Cypriots waited in long lines to get at their accounts after banks opened for the first time in nearly two weeks following an international bailout to save the country’s financial system. Pope Francis washed and kissed the feet of a dozen inmates, including two young women, at a juvenile detention center in a surprising departure from church rules that restricted the Holy Thursday ritual to men. British actor Richard Griffiths, 65, remembered by movie fans for being grumpy Uncle Vernon in the “Harry Potter” movies, died in Coventry, England.


Today’s Birthdays: Former White House national security adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski (ZBIG’-nyef breh-ZHIN’-skee) is 86. Country musician Charlie McCoy is 73. Movie director Mike Newell is 72. Actress Conchata Ferrell is 71. Actor Ken Howard is 70. Actress Dianne Wiest (weest) is 66. Country singer Reba McEntire is 59. Olympic gold medal gymnast Bart Conner is 56. Rapper Salt (Salt-N-Pepa) is 48. Actress Tracey Needham is 47. Actor Max Perlich is 46. Movie director Brett Ratner is 45. Country singer Rodney Atkins is 45. Actor Vince Vaughn is 44. Rapper Mr. Cheeks (Lost Boyz) is 43. Actor Ken L. is 41. Singer/songwriter Matt Nathanson is 41. Rock musician Dave Keuning is 38. Actress Annie Wersching is 37. Actress Julia Stiles is 33. Singer Lady Gaga is 28.


Thought for Today: “It isn’t what people think that’s important, but the reason they think what they think.” — Eugene Ionesco (1909-1994).