Today in History – March 4

1493 – Explorer Christopher Columbus arrived back in Lisbon, Portugal, aboard his ship Niña from his voyage to what are now The Bahamas and other islands in the Caribbean.

1519 – Hernán Cortés arrived in Mexico in search of the Aztec civilization and its wealth.

1628 – The Massachusetts Bay Colony was granted a Royal charter.

1681 – Charles II granted a land charter to William Penn for the area that will later become Pennsylvania.

1776 – American Revolutionary War: The Continental Army fortified Dorchester Heights with cannon, which led the British troops to abandon the Siege of Boston.

1789 – In New York City, the first Congress of the United States met, which put the United States Constitution into effect.

1791 – Vermont was admitted to the United States as the fourteenth state.

1797 – John Adams was inaugurated as the 2nd President of the United States of America, and became the first President to begin his presidency on March 4.

1814 – Americans defeated British forces at the Battle of Longwoods between London, Ontario and Thamesville, near present-day Wardsville, Ontario.

1837 – The city of Chicago was incorporated.

1849 – President-elect of the United States Zachary Taylor and Vice President-elect Millard Fillmore did not take their respective oaths of office (they did so the following day), leading to the erroneous theory that outgoing President pro tempore of the United States Senate David Rice Atchison had assumed the role of acting president for one day.

1861 – The first national flag of the Confederate States of America (the “Stars and Bars”) was adopted.

1865 – The third and final national flag of the Confederate States of America was adopted by the Confederate Congress.

1865 – Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated for his second term as US President. The man who would assassinate him weeks later, John Wilkes Booth, was photographed attending the inauguration.

1881 – Fictitious characters Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson began their first case together in “A Study in Scarlet”.

1921 – Hot Springs National Park was created in Arkansas.

1922 – The first vampire film, “Nosferatu”, an un-authorized adaptation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, premiered at the Berlin Zoological Garden in Germany.

1924 – The song “Happy Birthday To You” was published by Claydon Sunny.

1927 – Babe Ruth became the highest-paid player in MLB history when he signed a 3-year, $70,000 per season contract with the New York Yankees.

1936 – The airship Hindenburg took its maiden flight at Friedrichshafen, Germany.  The Hindenburg disaster occurred fourteen months later.

1945 – United Kingdom’s Princess Elizabeth (later Queen Elizabeth II), joined the British Auxiliary Transport Service as a driver.

1954 – Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, announced the first successful kidney transplant.

1964 – Jimmy Hoffa was convicted of jury tampering.  He disappeared July 30, 1975.

1966 – John Lennon said, “We (the Beatles) are more popular than Jesus”.

1969 – London East End gang bosses twins Ronnie and Reggie Kray were found guilty of murder. Both died in prison.

1976 – John Pezzin bowled 33 consecutive strikes at Toledo, Ohio.

1978 – Chicago Daily News, founded in 1875, published its last issue.

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