On This Day … 06 March


  • 12 BC – The Roman Emperor Augustus is named Pontifex Maximus, incorporating the position into that of the emperor.
  • 961 – Byzantine conquest of Chandax by Nikephoros Phokas, end of the Emirate of Crete.
  • 1204 – The Siege of Château Gaillard ends in a French victory over King John of England, who loses control of Normandy to King Philip II Augustus.
  • 1323 – Treaty of Paris of 1323 is signed.
  • 1454 – Thirteen Years’ War: Delegates of the Prussian Confederation pledge allegiance to King Casimir IV of Poland who agrees to commit his forces in aiding the Confederation’s struggle for independence from the Teutonic Knights.
  • 1521 – Ferdinand Magellan arrives at Guam.
  • 1788 – The First Fleet arrives at Norfolk Island, Australia, in order to found a convict settlement.
  • 1820 – The Missouri Compromise is signed into law by President James Monroe. The compromise allows Missouri to enter the Union as a slave state, brings Maine into the Union as a free state, and makes the rest of the northern part of the Louisiana Purchase territory slavery-free.
  • 1834 – York, Upper Canada, is incorporated as Toronto.
  • 1836 – Texas Revolution: Battle of the Alamo: After a thirteen-day siege by an army of 3,000 Mexican troops, the 187 Texas volunteers, including frontiersman Davy Crockett and colonel Jim Bowie, defending the Alamo are killed and the fort is captured.
  • 1857 – The Supreme Court of the United States rules in the Dred Scott v. Sandford case.
  • 1882 – The Serbian kingdom is re-founded.
  • 1899 – Bayer registers “Aspirin” as a trademark.
  • 1912 – Italo-Turkish War: Italian forces become the first to use airships in war, as two dirigibles drop bombs on Turkish troops encamped at Janzur, from an altitude of 6,000 feet.
  • 1921 – Portuguese Communist Party is founded as the Portuguese Section of the Communist International.
  • 1933 – Great Depression: President Franklin D. Roosevelt declares a “bank holiday”, closing all U.S. banks and freezing all financial transactions.
  • 1943 – World War II: The Battle of Fardykambos, one of the first major battles between the Greek Resistance and the occupying Royal Italian Army, ends with the surrender of an entire Italian battalion, the bulk of the garrison of the town of Grevena, leading to its liberation a fortnight later.
  • 1944 – World War II: Soviet Air Forces bomb an evacuated town of Narva in German-occupied Estonia, destroying the entire historical Swedish-era town.
  • 1945 – World War II: Cologne is captured by American troops.
  • 1945 – World War II: Operation Spring Awakening, the last major German offensive of the war, begins.
  • 1946 – Ho Chi Minh signs an agreement with France which recognises Vietnam as an autonomous state in the Indochinese Federation and the French Union.
  • 1951 – Cold War: The trial of Ethel and Julius Rosenberg begins.
  • 1953 – Georgy Malenkov succeeds Joseph Stalin as Premier of the Soviet Union and First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.
  • 1957 – Ghana becomes the first Sub-Saharan country to gain independence from the British.
  • 1967 – Cold War: Joseph Stalin’s daughter Svetlana Alliluyeva defects to the United States.
  • 1968 – Three rebels are executed by Rhodesia, the first executions since the Unilateral Declaration of Independence (UDI), prompting international condemnation.
  • 1975 – Algiers Accord: Iran and Iraq announce a settlement of their border dispute.
  • 1988 – Three Provisional Irish Republican Army volunteers are shot dead by the SAS in Gibraltar in Operation Flavius.

People (Births)

  • 1706 – George Pocock, English admiral (d. 1792).
  • 1761 – Antoine-François Andréossy, French general and diplomat (d. 1828).
  • 1779 – Antoine-Henri Jomini, Swiss-French general (d. 1869).
  • 1831 – Philip Sheridan, Irish-American general (d. 1888).
  • 1927 – Gordon Cooper, American engineer, pilot, and astronaut (d. 2004).
  • 1937 – Valentina Tereshkova, Russian general, pilot, and astronaut.

People (Deaths)

  • 1466 – Alvise Loredan, Venetian admiral and statesman (b. 1393).1
  • 836 – Deaths at the Battle of the Alamo:
    • James Bonham, American lawyer and soldier (b. 1807).
    • James Bowie, American colonel (b. 1796).
    • Davy Crockett, American soldier and politician (b. 1786).
    • William B. Travis, American lieutenant colonel and lawyer (b. 1809).
  • 1854 – Charles Vane, 3rd Marquess of Londonderry, Irish colonel and diplomat, Under-Secretary of State for War and the Colonies (b. 1778).
  • 1919 – Oskars Kalpaks, Latvian colonel (b. 1882).
  • 1935 – Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., American colonel, lawyer, and jurist (b. 1841).
  • 1952 – Jürgen Stroop, German general (b. 1895).
  • 1984 – Homer N. Wallin, American admiral (b. 1893).
  • 1997 – Michael Manley, Jamaican soldier, pilot, and politician, 4th Prime Minister of Jamaica (b. 1924).
  • 2014 – Frank Jobe, American soldier and surgeon (b. 1925).

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