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Groundbreaking Ceremonies Took Place In Washington For The Vietnam Veterans Memorial

10:09 PM, Mar 25, 2012   |    comments
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Undated -- Today in History

Today is Monday, March 26, the 86th day of 2012. There are 280 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On March 26, 1982, groundbreaking ceremonies took place in Washington, D.C., for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

On this date:

In 1804, the Louisiana Purchase was divided into the Territory of Orleans and the District of Louisiana.

In 1812, an earthquake devastated Caracas, Venezuela, causing an estimated 26,000 deaths, according to the US Geological Survey.

In 1827, composer Ludwig van Beethoven died in Vienna.

In 1874, poet Robert Frost was born in San Francisco.

In 1892, poet Walt Whitman died in Camden, N.J.

In 1912, an explosion at the Jed Coal & Coke Co. Mine in West Virginia claimed the lives of 83 miners.

In 1937, a 6-foot-tall statue of the cartoon character Popeye was unveiled during the Second Annual Spinach Festival in Crystal City, Texas.

In 1958, the US Army launched America's third successful satellite, Explorer 3.

In 1962, the US Supreme Court, in Baker v. Carr, gave federal courts the power to order reapportionment of states' legislative districts, a 6-2 decision that eventually led to the doctrine of "one man, one vote."

In 1979, a peace treaty was signed by Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and witnessed by President Jimmy Carter at the White House.

In 1992, a judge in Indianapolis sentenced former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson to six years in prison for raping a Miss Black America contestant. (Tyson ended up serving three years.)

In 1997, the bodies of 39 members of the Heaven's Gate techno-religious cult who'd committed suicide were found inside a rented mansion in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.

Ten years ago: Yasser Arafat decided not to attend a key Arab summit in Beirut, Lebanon; his Cabinet accused Israel of trying to "blackmail" the Palestinian leader with tough conditions for allowing him to go. Arthur Andersen chief executive Joseph Berardino resigned, bowing to mounting pressure as a result of the accounting firm's role in the Enron scandal. President George W. Bush nominated Dr. Richard Carmona to be surgeon general.

Five years ago: The military concluded that high-ranking Army officers had made critical errors in reporting the friendly fire death of Army Ranger Pat Tillman in Afghanistan, but that there was no criminal wrongdoing in the shooting of the former NFL star by fellow soldiers. (The findings were rejected by Tillman's family.)

Australian detainee David Hicks pleaded guilty before a military tribunal at Guantanamo to helping terrorists fight the United States in Afghanistan. (Hicks was sentenced to seven years in prison; all but nine months' prison time was suspended. Hicks was returned to Australia to serve out his term, and was freed in December 2007.)

One year ago: More than 250,000 people took to London's streets to protest the toughest spending cuts since World War II; riot police clashed with small breakaway groups and arrested more than 200 people. Former Democratic vice presidential candidate Geraldine Ferraro, the first female major party nominee for the office, died in Boston at 75. Harry Wesley Coover Jr., 94, known as the inventor of the popular adhesive Super Glue, died in Kingsport, Tenn.

Associated Press

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