Today's History Trivia for March 11
2004 Madrid Train Bombings Terrorists set off a series of ten bombings during rush hour aboard four commuter trains in Madrid, Spain. 192 people were killed and 2,050 were injured.
1993 First woman U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno, appointed by Pres. Bill Clinton, is confirmed.
1985 Mikhail Gorbachev takes office as leader of the Soviet Union. He is the superpower's fourth leader in three years.
1980 John Hinckley, Jr. watches the movie Taxi Driver. He would watch the film many more times, developing his obsession with actress Jodie Foster. This led to his attempted assassination of U.S. President Ronald Reagan in an effort to impress her.
1971 Partridge Family The TV group's Doesn't Somebody Want to be Wanted is certified gold.
1942 World War II General Douglas MacArthur leaves the Philippines Six days later he would later declare, "I shall return."
1941 World War II Pres. Roosevelt signs the Lend-Lease Bill, allowing the U.S. to supply military aid to the Allies.
1888 Blizzard of 1888 One of the most famous snow storms in U.S. history, killing 400 people and creating 30-foot snow drifts.
1864 First woman assistant Army surgeon Dr. Mary Edwards Walker begins serving as a contract surgeon.
1861 Civil War The Confederate Constitution is passed by the Confederate Congress.
Today's Birthdays for March 11
1956 Joey Buttafuoco New York auto body shop owner. After having an affair with under-aged Amy Fisher, she shot his wife in the face. Buttafuoco later pleaded guilty to statutory rape.
1952 Douglas Adams d. 2001 British author, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (1980).
1936 Antonin Scalia d. 2016 U.S. Supreme Court justice (1986-2016). Scalia on abortion, "The States may, if they wish, permit abortion on demand, but the Constitution does not require them to do so."
1934 Sam Donaldson American reporter. TV: ABC Weekend News and PrimeTime Live.
1931 Rupert Murdoch Australian-born American publisher of the New York Post and Village Voice.
1925 Peter Roger Hunt d. 2002 British editor, director. Film: Goldfinger (1964, editor), Dr. No (1962, editor), and On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969, director).
1916 Lord Harold Wilson d. 1995 British politician, prime minister (1964-70, 74-76) and Labor Party leader.
1903 Lawrence Welk d. 1992 American orchestra leader, "Ah-one, an' ah-two."
1898 Dorothy Gish d. 1968 American silent-film actress. Film: Remodeling Her Husband (1920) and Nell Gwyn (1926).
1893 Wanda Gag d. 1946 American author, artist. She is known for her translation and illustration of Grimm's Fairy Tales.
1890 Vannevar Bush d. 1974 American electrical engineer, developed the first electronic analogue computer (1930s).
1885 Malcolm Campbell d. 1948 British auto racer. He was the first to travel five miles in a minute in an automobile.
1818 Marius Petipa d. 1910 French-born Russian choreographer. He is considered the most influential ballet master and choreographer in ballet history. Stage: The Sleeping Beauty (1890) and Swan Lake (1895).
1811 Urbain Le Verrier d. 1877 French astronomer. Both he and J.C. Adams, working independently, correctly predicted the existence and orbit of Neptune (1845). The planet was discovered the following year using Le Verrier's calculations.
1731 Robert Treat Paine d. 1814 American politician, signer of the Declaration of Independence.
1544 Torquato Tasso d. 1595 Italian poet of the late Renaissance. He spent seven years confined to an insane asylum. Writings: Gerusalemme liberato (1575, which is considered one the great masterpieces of European literature).
Deaths for March 11
2016 Keith Emerson b. 1944 British keyboardist, with Emerson, Lake and Palmer. Music: Lucky Man (1970), Tarkus (1971), and Brain Salad Surgery (1974).
2010 Merlin Olsen b. 1940 American football player, actor. Played defensive tackle for the Los Angeles Rams (1962–1976). TV: Little House on the Prairie (1977-81, Jonathan Garvey) and Father Murphy (1981-83, title role).
1992 Richard Brooks b. 1912 (Ruben Sax), American director, screenwriter. Film: The Blackboard Jungle (1955) and Looking for Mr. Goodbar (1977).
1971 Philo Taylor Farnsworth b. 1906 American inventor of the first all electronic TV. He also invented a small nuclear fusion device, known as the Farnsworth–Hirsch fusor, or simply "fusor."
1970 Erle Stanley Gardner b. 1889 American lawyer, author, creator of Perry Mason (1933).
1957 Richard E. Byrd b. 1888 American naval aviator. He and Floyd Bennett became the first to fly over the North Pole (1926), and he was the first to fly over the South Pole (1929).
1955 Sir Alexander Fleming b. 1881 English bacteriologist. He discovered the bacteria fighting capabilities of penicillin (1928), for which he was awarded the Nobel Prize (1945).