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This Day in U.S. History: March 29


1806 – Construction is authorized of the Great National Pike, better known as the Cumberland Road, becoming the first United States federal highway.

1847 – Mexican–American War: United States forces led by General Winfield Scott take Veracruz after a siege.

1865 – American Civil War: Federal forces under Major General Philip Sheridan move to flank Confederate forces under Robert E. Lee as the Appomattox Campaign begins.

1886 – Dr. John Pemberton brews the first batch of Coca-Cola in a backyard in Atlanta.

1936 – In Germany, Adolf Hitler receives 99% of the votes in a referendum to ratify Germany's illegal reoccupation of the Rhineland, receiving 44.5 million votes out of 45.5 million registered voters.

1941 – The North American Radio Broadcasting Agreement goes into effect at 03:00 local time.

1951 – Ethel and Julius Rosenberg are convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage.

1957 – The New York, Ontario and Western Railway makes its final run, the first major U.S. railroad to be abandoned in its entirety.

1961 – The Twenty-third Amendment to the United States Constitution is ratified, allowing residents of Washington, D.C., to vote in presidential elections.

1971 – My Lai Massacre: Lieutenant William Calley is convicted of premeditated murder and sentenced to life in prison.

1971 – A Los Angeles jury recommends the death penalty for Charles Manson and three female followers.

1973 – Vietnam War: The last United States combat soldiers leave South Vietnam.

1973 – Operation Barrel Roll, a covert US bombing campaign in Laos to stop communist infiltration of South Vietnam, ends.

1974 – NASA's Mariner 10 becomes the first space probe to fly by Mercury.

1984 – The Baltimore Colts load its possessions onto fifteen Mayflower moving trucks in the early morning hours and transfer its operations to Indianapolis.

1999 – The Dow Jones Industrial Average closes above the 10,000 mark (10,006.78) for the first time, during the height of the dot-com bubble.

2004 – Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia join NATO as full members.


1790 – John Tyler, American lawyer and politician, 10th President of the United States (d. 1862)

1867 – Cy Young, American baseball player and manager (d. 1955)

1874 – Lou Henry Hoover, American wife of Herbert Hoover, 33rd First Lady of the United States (d. 1944)

1916 – Eugene McCarthy, American poet and politician (d. 2005)

1917 – Man o' War, American race horse (d. 1947)

1918 – Pearl Bailey, American actress and singer (d. 1990)

1918 – Sam Walton, American businessman, founded Walmart and Sam's Club (d. 1992)

1927 – John McLaughlin, American journalist and producer (d. 2016)

1937 – Billy Carter, American businessman and politician (d. 1988)

1942 – Bob Lurtsema, American football player

1976 – Jennifer Capriati, American tennis player

1984 – Nate Adams, American motocross racer


1970 – Anna Louise Strong, American journalist and author (b. 1885)

1996 – Bill Goldsworthy, Canadian ice hockey player (b. 1944)

2005 – Johnnie Cochran, American lawyer (b. 1937)

2016 – Patty Duke, American actress (b. 1946)