March 2020

This Day in History… March 31, 1927

Happy Birthday, César Chávez

US #3781 was issued on the 10th anniversary of Chávez’s death in 2003.

César Estrada Chávez was born on March 31, 1927, in Yuma, Arizona.

When Chávez was 10, his grandmother died and the local government auctioned off the family’s farmstead to pay for back taxes.  Chávez and his family then made their way to California.  They moved around California quite a bit, finding work as agricultural laborers.  On weekends, Chávez joined his family in this work. 

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This Day in History… March 30, 1842

Happy National Doctors’ Day 

US #875 from the Famous American Scientists issue. 

March 30 is celebrated as National Doctor’s Day in the United States to commemorate Dr. Crawford W. Long’s use of ether for the first time on this date in 1842.

Crawford Williamson Long was born on November 1, 1815, in Danielsville, Georgia.  The son of a senator, merchant, and planter, Long was named after Georgia statesman William H. Crawford.

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This Day in History… March 29, 1638

Founding of New Sweden 

US #C117 was issued on this day in 1988.

On March 29, 1638, the New Sweden Colony was established, encompassing parts of present-day Delaware, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.

In the 1600s, Sweden was a significant world power, with possessions including Finland, parts of Poland, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Germany, and the Soviet Union.  After hearing of the success the British and Dutch had in North America, Sweden sought to expand its territorial holdings.

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This Day in History… March 28, 1964

American Radio Relay League Saves Lives 

US #1260 was issued for the league’s 50th anniversary.

On March 28, 1964, amateur radio operators provided essential emergency communications in the wake of a devastating earthquake in Alaska.

The idea for the American Radio Relay League came from Hiram Percy Maxim of Hartford, Connecticut.  One night in April 1914, he wanted to send a message to a friend 30 miles away in Springfield, but was unable to reach him.  From this, the idea struck Maxim to create an organized relay system for radio amateurs.

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This Day in History… March 27, 1912

Cherry Trees Planted Along the Potomac

US #4651-52 was issued for the 100th anniversary of this event.

On March 27, 1912, US First Lady Helen Taft and wife of the Japanese ambassador Viscountess Chinda planted two Yoshina cherry trees on the northern bank of the Potomac River.  The plantings were in celebration of the Japanese gift of 3,020 cherry trees to the US government.

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This Day in History… March 26, 1827

Death of Beethoven 

Maldives Islands #669 was issued for the 150th anniversary of Beethoven’s death.

On March 26, 1827, legendary composer and pianist Ludwig van Beethoven died in Vienna, Austria.

Beethoven’s exact birthdate is unknown, though some historians believe he was born on December 16, 1770, in Bonn, Germany.  He was baptized on December 17, and at the time, it was customary for children to be baptized the day after they were born.

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