Historical Events on March 21
- 1814: At the Battle of Arcis-sur-Aube during the Napoleonic Wars, French forces are repelled by Austrian forces.
- 1844: Today is the first day of the first year of the Bahá’í Calendar.
- 1861: The Cornerstone Speech is given by Alexander Stephens.
- 1913: Over twenty thousand homes and 360 people are killed during the Great Dayton Flood in Dayton, Ohio.
- 1918: The German Spring Offensive starts with Operation Michael during World War I.
- 1925: Teaching human evolution is banned in Tennessee with the passage of the Butler Act.
- 1943: Wehrmacht officer Rudolf von Gersdorff attempts to assassinate Adolf Hitler by using a suicide bomb but the plan fails. Fortunately, he was able to diffuse the bomb in time to avoid suspicion.
- 1945: Mandalay, Burma is liberated by British forces during World War II.
- 1945: Operation Carthage begins during World War II. During this operation, RAF planes bomb the Gestapo Headquarters in Copenhagen, Denmark. Unfortunately, they also accidentally hit a school and kill over a 120 people.
- 1960: 180 people are wounded and 69 are killed when the police in South Africa fire on demonstrators. This event would become known as the Sharpeville Massacre.
- 1963: The Federal Penitentiary Alcatraz in California is shut down.
Famous Birthdays on March 21
- American candy maker and creator of the Mars Bar and M&M’s, Forrest Mars, Sr. is born in 1904.
- American poet and author, Phyllis McGinley is born in 1905.
- American captain and politician, 38th Governor of Wisconsin Patrick Lucey, is born in 1918.
- English actor Gary Oldman is born in 1958.
- American actor Matthew Broderick is born in 1962.
- American actress and TV show host, Rosie O’Donnell is born in 1962.
- American author Mark Waid is born in 1962.