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This Day in U.S. History: March 26


1812 – A political cartoon in the Boston Gazette coins the term "gerrymander" to describe oddly shaped electoral districts designed to help incumbents win reelection.

1830 – The Book of Mormon is published in Palmyra, New York.

1942 – World War II: The first female prisoners arrive at Auschwitz concentration camp in German-occupied Poland.

1945 – World War II: The Battle of Iwo Jima ends as the island is officially secured by American forces.

1954 – Nuclear weapons testing: The Romeo shot of Operation Castle is detonated at Bikini Atoll. Yield: 11 megatons.

1958 – The United States Army launches Explorer 3.

1979 – Anwar al-Sadat, Menachem Begin and Jimmy Carter sign the Egypt–Israel Peace Treaty in Washington, D.C.

1982 – A groundbreaking ceremony for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial is held in Washington, D.C..

1999 – A jury in Michigan finds Dr. Jack Kevorkian guilty of second-degree murder for administering a lethal injection to a terminally ill man.


1773 – Nathaniel Bowditch, American mathematician and navigator (d. 1838)

1850 – Edward Bellamy, American author, socialist, and utopian visionary (d. 1898)

1874 – Robert Frost, American poet and playwright (d. 1963)

1911 – Tennessee Williams, American playwright, and poet (d. 1983)

1914 – William Westmoreland, American general (d. 2005)

1930 – Sandra Day O'Connor, American lawyer and jurist

1931 – Leonard Nimoy, American actor, singer, and director (d. 2015)

1936 – Harry Kalas, American sportscaster (d. 2009)

1940 – Nancy Pelosi, American lawyer and politician, 60th Speaker of the United States House of Representatives

1942 – Erica Jong, American novelist and poet

1943 – Bob Woodward, American journalist and author

1944 – Diana Ross, American singer-songwriter, producer, and actress (The Supremes)

1954 – Curtis Sliwa, American talk show host and activist, founded Guardian Angels

1973 – Larry Page, American computer scientist and businessman, co-founded Google


1885 – Anson Stager, American general and businessman, co-founded Western Union (b. 1825)

1892 – Walt Whitman, American poet, essayist, and journalist (b. 1819)

1932 – Henry M. Leland, American machinist, inventor, engineer, automotive entrepreneur and founded of Cadillac and Lincoln (b. 1843)

1959 – Raymond Chandler, American crime novelist and screenwriter (b. 1888)

1979 – Jean Stafford, American author and academic (b. 1915)

1995 – Eazy-E, American rapper and producer (b. 1963)