Valdosta Daily Times

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March 21, 2014

Today in History for Friday, March 21, 2014

-- — Highlight in History

On March 21, 1685, composer Johann Sebastian Bach was born in Eisenach, Germany.

On this date

In 1871, journalist Henry M. Stanley began his famous expedition in Africa to locate the missing Scottish missionary David Livingstone.

In 1963, the Alcatraz federal prison island in San Francisco Bay was emptied of its last inmates and closed at the order of Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy.

In 1965, civil rights demonstrators led by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. began their third, successful march from Selma to Montgomery, Ala.

In 1972, the Supreme Court, in Dunn v. Blumstein, ruled that states may not require at least a year’s residency for voting eligibility.

In 1985, police in Langa, South Africa, opened fire on blacks marching to mark the 25th anniversary of Sharpeville; the reported death toll varied between 29 and 43.

In 1994, at the Academy Awards, “Schindler’s List” won seven Oscars, including best picture and best director for Steven Spielberg; Tom Hanks won best actor for “Philadelphia” while Holly Hunter was honored as best actress for “The Piano.”

Ten years ago

The White House disputed assertions by President George W. Bush’s former counterterrorism coordinator, Richard A. Clarke, that the administration had failed to recognize the risk of an attack by al-Qaida in the months leading up to 9/11. (Clarke’s assertions were contained in a new book, “Against All Enemies.”) Iraqi-born architect Zaha Hadid won the prestigious 2004 Pritzker Architecture Prize, becoming the first woman to receive the profession’s highest honor.

Five years ago

In Oakland, Calif., parolee Lovelle Mixon shot and killed two motorcycle officers, then killed two SWAT team members while holed up in an apartment before he was killed by law enforcement. Activists representing working- and middle-class families paid visits to the lavish Connecticut homes of American International Group executives to protest the tens of millions of dollars in bonuses awarded by the struggling insurance company after it had received a massive federal bailout. Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei dismissed overtures from President Obama, saying Tehran did not see any change in U.S. policy under its new administration.

One year ago

On his second day in the Middle East, President Barack Obama insisted “peace is possible” as he prodded both Israelis and Palestinians to return to long-stalled negotiations with few, if any, pre-conditions.

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