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Wednesday 20 March 2024 Calendar with holidays, observances and special days

March 20 Events

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Current March 20, year 2023; March 20, year 2024 see also: March 20, year 2016; March 20, year 2017; March 20, year 2018; March 20, year 2019; March 20, year 2020; March 20, year 2021; March 20, year 2022 calendar
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Holidays and observances


  • 2003 – Invasion of Iraq: In the early hours of the morning, the United States and three other countries (the UK, Australia and Poland) begin military operations in Iraq.
  • 1999 – Legoland California, the first Legoland outside of Europe, opens in Carlsbad, California.
  • 1985 – Libby Riddles becomes the first woman to win the 1,135-mile Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.
  • 1972 – The Troubles: The first Provisional IRA car bombing in Belfast kills seven people and injures 148 others in Northern Ireland.
  • 1952 – The United States Senate ratifies a peace treaty with Japan.
  • 1951 – Fujiyoshida, a city located in Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan, in the center of the Japanese main island of Honshū is founded.
  • 1948 – With a Musicians Union ban lifted, the first telecasts of classical music in the United States, under Eugene Ormandy and Arturo Toscanini, are given on CBS and NBC.
  • 1942 – World War II: General Douglas MacArthur, at Terowie, South Australia, makes his famous speech regarding the fall of the Philippines, in which he says: "I came out of Bataan and I shall return".
  • In 1930, Harland Sanders took over a Shell filling station on US Route 25 just outside North Corbin, Kentucky, a small town on the edge of the Appalachian Mountains. It was here that he first served to travelers the recipes that he had learned as a child: fried chicken and other dishes such as steaks and country ham. KFC Corporation (Kentucky Fried Chicken) - there are over 20,500 KFC outlets in more than 125 countries and territories around the world.
  • 1923 – The Arts Club of Chicago hosts the opening of Pablo Picasso's first United States showing, entitled Original Drawings by Pablo Picasso, becoming an early proponent of modern art in the United States.
  • 1922 – The USS Langley is commissioned as the first United States Navy aircraft carrier.
  • 1888 – The premiere of the very first Romani language operetta is staged in Moscow, Russia.
  • 1854 – The Republican Party of the United States is organized in Ripon, Wisconsin.


  • 1993 – Sloane Stephens, American tennis player. Stephens was the 2017 US Open champion, and has won six WTA singles titles in total.
  • 1985 – Ronnie Brewer, American basketball player. Ronnie Brewer (born March 20, 1985) is an American former professional basketball player who last played for the Santa Cruz Warriors of the NBA Development League.
  • 1984 – Christy Carlson Romano, American actress and singer. She is known for her role as Ren Stevens in the Disney Channel sitcom Even Stevens, and as the voice of the titular character in the Disney Channel animated series Kim Possible.
  • 1980 – Jamal Crawford, American basketball player. Aaron Jamal Crawford (born March 20, 1980) is an American professional basketball player who played last for the Phoenix Suns of the National Basketball Association (NBA).
  • 1976 – Chester Bennington, American singer-songwriter, producer, and actor (d. 2017), was an American singer, songwriter, musician, and actor. He was best known as the lead vocalist for Linkin Park and was also lead vocalist for the bands Dead by Sunrise, Stone Temple Pilots, and Grey Daze.
  • 1971 – Touré, American journalist and author. Touré is the French transcription of a West African surname (English transcriptions are Turay and Touray).
  • 1970 – Edoardo Ballerini, American actor, director, producer, and screenwriter. He has appeared in numerous films and television series, from I Shot Andy Warhol (1996) to the Omphalos (2013).
  • 1970 – Michael Rapaport, American actor, podcast host, and director. He also appeared in Boston Public, Friends, Prison Break, Justified, and Atypical.
  • 1968 – A. J. Jacobs, American journalist and author. J." Jacobs Jr. (born March 20, 1968) is an American journalist, author, and lecturer best known for writing about his lifestyle experiments.
  • 1967 – Mookie Blaylock, American basketball player. He spent 13 years in the National Basketball Association (NBA) with the New Jersey Nets, Atlanta Hawks, and the Golden State Warriors.
  • 1963 – Kathy Ireland, American model, actress, and furniture designer. In 1993, she founded a brand marketing company, kathy ireland Worldwide (kiWW), which has made her one of the wealthiest former models in the world.
  • 1963 – Paul Annacone, American tennis player and coach. Coach Jim Verdieck Touring Pro Coach of the Year 2007
  • 1962 – Stephen Sommers, American director, producer, and screenwriter. Stephen Sommers (born March 20, 1962) is an American film director and screenwriter, best known for big-budget movies, such as The Mummy (1999), its sequel, The Mummy Returns (2001), Van Helsing (2004), and G.I.
  • 1961 – Slim Jim Phantom, American rock drummer. James McDonnell (born March 21, 1961), known by the stage name Slim Jim Phantom, is the drummer for Stray Cats.
  • 1960 – Norm Magnusson, American painter and sculptor. Norm Magnusson (born March 20, 1960) is a New York-based artist and political activist and founder, in 1991, of the art movement funism, he began his career creating allegorical animal paintings with pointed social commentaries.
  • 1959 – Mary Roach, American author. Mary Roach (born March 20, 1959), is an American author, specializing in popular science and humor.
  • 1959 – Sting (wrestler), American wrestler. Steve Borden (born March 20, 1959), better known by the ring name Sting, is an American retired professional wrestler, actor, author and former bodybuilder.
  • 1958 – Holly Hunter, American actress and producer. She was also nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress for Broadcast News (1987), and the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for The Firm (1993) and again for Thirteen (2003).
  • 1958 – Rickey Jackson, American football player. Rickey Anderson Jackson (born March 20, 1958) is a former American football linebacker who played in the National Football League (NFL) for the New Orleans Saints (1981–1993) and the San Francisco 49ers (1994–1995).
  • 1957 – Chris Wedge, American animator, producer, screenwriter, and voice actor. He is a co-founder of the animation studio Blue Sky Studios and voiced the character Scrat in the Ice Age franchise.
  • 1957 – Spike Lee, American actor, director, producer, and screenwriter. His production company, 40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks, has produced more than 35 films since 1983.
  • 1957 – Theresa Russell, American actress. She was then cast in Nicolas Roeg's controversial thriller Bad Timing (1980), which earned her critical praise.
  • 1957 – Vanessa Bell Calloway, American actress. In the following years, Bell Calloway appeared in What's Love Got to Do with It (1993), The Inkwell (1994), Crimson Tide (1995), and Daylight (1996).
  • 1956 – Anne Donahue, American lawyer and politician. She is also editor of Counterpoint, a quarterly mental health publication distributed for free throughout Vermont.
  • 1955 – Nina Kiriki Hoffman, American author. Nina Kiriki Hoffman (born March 20, 1955 in San Gabriel, California) is an American fantasy, science fiction and horror writer.
  • 1954 – Mike Francesa, American radio talk show host and television commentator. Together with Chris Russo, he launched Mike and the Mad Dog in 1989 on WFAN in New York City, one of the most successful sports-talk radio programs in American history.
  • 1954 – Paul Mirabella, American baseball player. Mirabella, who threw left-handed, played all or part of thirteen seasons in Major League Baseball for the Texas Rangers (1978 and 1982), New York Yankees (1979), Toronto Blue Jays (1980–81), Baltimore Orioles (1983), Seattle Mariners (1984–86) and Milwaukee Brewers (1987–90).
  • 1951 – Jimmie Vaughan, American blues-rock singer-songwriter and guitarist. Jimmie Lawrence Vaughan (born March 20, 1951, Oak Cliff, Dallas County, Texas, United States) is an American blues rock guitarist and singer based in Austin, Texas.
  • 1950 – William Hurt, American actor. William McChord Hurt (born March 20, 1950) is an American actor, director, producer, and screenwriter.
  • 1949 – Marcia Ball, American blues singer-songwriter and pianist. Marcia Ball (born March 20, 1949, Orange, Texas, United States) is an American blues singer and pianist raised in Vinton, Louisiana.
  • 1948 – John de Lancie, American actor. John de Lancie is an American actor, director, producer, writer, and voice artist, best known for his role as Q in Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987–94), and the voice of Discord in My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic (2010–2019).
  • 1947 – John Boswell, American historian, philologist, and academic (d. 1994), was a historian and a full professor at Yale University. Many of Boswell's studies focused on the issue of religion and homosexuality, specifically Christianity and homosexuality.
  • 1946 – Douglas B. Green, American singer-songwriter and guitarist. Green (born March 20, 1946), better known by his stage name Ranger Doug, is an American musician, arranger, award-winning Western music songwriter, and Grand Ole Opry member best known for his work with Western music and the group Riders in the Sky in which he plays guitar and sings lead and baritone vocals.
  • 1945 – Henry Bartholomay, American soldier and pilot (d. 2015), was a United States Naval Aviator. He was a recipient of the Silver Star and the Distinguished Flying Cross.
  • 1945 – Pat Riley, American basketball player and coach. Patrick James Riley (born March 20, 1945) is an American professional basketball executive, and a former coach and player in the National Basketball Association (NBA).
  • 1944 – Camille Cosby, American author, producer, and philanthropist. The character of Clair Huxtable from The Cosby Show was based on her.
  • 1943 – Douglas Tompkins, American businessman, co-founded The North Face and Esprit Holdings (d. 2015), was an American conservationist, outdoorsman, philanthropist, filmmaker, agriculturalist, and businessman who assembled and preserved the land which became the largest gift of private land to any South American government.
  • 1943 – Gerard Malanga, American poet and photographer. Gerard Joseph Malanga (born March 20, 1943) is an American poet, photographer, filmmaker, actor, curator and archivist.
  • 1943 – Paul Junger Witt, American director and producer, was an American film and television producer. He, with his partners Tony Thomas and Susan Harris (also his wife), produced such television shows as Here Come the Brides, The Partridge Family, The Golden Girls, Soap, Benson, It's a Living, Empty Nest and Blossom.
  • 1941 – Pat Corrales, American baseball player and manager. Patrick Corrales (born March 20, 1941) is an American former professional baseball catcher, manager, and coach, who played in Major League Baseball (MLB), from 1964 to 1973, primarily for the Cincinnati Reds as well as the Philadelphia Phillies, St.
  • 1940 – Giampiero Moretti, Italian race car driver and businessman, founded the Momo company (d. 2012), was an Italian racing driver and the founder of the MOMO company in the 1960s. He was born in Milan.
  • 1940 – Mary Ellen Mark, American photographer and journalist (d. 2015), was an American photographer known for her photojournalism, documentary photography, portraiture, and advertising photography. She photographed people who were "away from mainstream society and toward its more interesting, often troubled fringes".
  • 1939 – Gerald Curran, American lawyer and politician (d. 2013), was an American politician and lawyer.
  • 1937 – Jerry Reed, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and actor (d. 2008), was an American country music singer, guitarist, composer, and songwriter, as well as an actor who appeared in more than a dozen films. His signature songs included "Guitar Man", "U.S.
  • 1937 – Lois Lowry, American author. Lois Lowry (born Lois Ann Hammersberg on March 20, 1937) is an American writer.
  • 1936 – Lee "Scratch" Perry, Jamaican singer, songwriter, music producer, and inventor. He has worked with and produced for a wide variety of artists, including Bob Marley and the Wailers, Junior Murvin, the Congos, Max Romeo, Adrian Sherwood, the Beastie Boys, Ari Up, The Clash, The Orb and many others.
  • 1935 – Bettye Washington Greene, American chemist (d. 1995), was the first African American female Ph.D. chemist to work in a professional position at the Dow Chemical Company. At Dow, she researched latex and polymers.
  • 1935 – Ted Bessell, American actor and director (d. 1996), was an American television actor and director. He is best known for his role as Donald Hollinger, the boyfriend and eventual fiancé of Marlo Thomas's character in the TV series That Girl (1966–1971).
  • 1933 – George Altman, American baseball player. George Lee Altman (born March 20, 1933) is a former Major League Baseball outfielder and Nippon Professional Baseball outfielder.
  • 1931 – Hal Linden, American actor, singer, and director. Hal Linden (born Harold Lipshitz, March 20, 1931) is an American stage and screen actor, television director and musician.
  • 1928 – Fred Rogers, American television host and producer (d. 2003), was an American television personality, musician, puppeteer, writer, producer, and Presbyterian minister. He was the creator, showrunner and host of the preschool television series Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, which ran from 1968 to 2001.
  • 1928 – James P. Gordon, American physicist and engineer (d. 2013), was an American physicist known for his work in the fields of optics and quantum electronics. His contributions include the design, analysis and construction of the first maser in 1954 as a doctoral student at Columbia University under the supervision of C.
  • 1928 – Jerome Biffle, American long jumper and coach (d. 2002), was an American athlete who competed mainly in the long jump, where he was the Gold Medalist at the 1952 Helsinki Olympic Games.
  • 1925 – John Ehrlichman, American lawyer, 12th White House Counsel (d. 1999), was counsel and Assistant to the President for Domestic Affairs under President Richard Nixon. Ehrlichman was an important influence on Nixon's domestic policy, coaching him on issues and enlisting his support for environmental initiatives.
  • 1922 – Carl Reiner, American actor, director, producer, and screenwriter. In the 1960s, Reiner was best known as the creator, producer, writer, and actor on The Dick Van Dyke Show.
  • 1922 – Larry Elgart, American saxophonist and bandleader, was an American jazz bandleader. With his brother Les, he recorded "Bandstand Boogie", the theme to the long-running dance show American Bandstand.
  • 1922 – Ray Goulding, American actor and screenwriter (d. 1990), was an American comedian, who, together with Bob Elliott formed the comedy duo of Bob and Ray. He was born in Lowell, Massachusetts, the fourth of five children of Thomas Goulding, an overseer in a textile mill, and his wife Mary.
  • 1920 – Pamela Harriman, English-American diplomat, 58th United States Ambassador to France (d. 1997), was an English-born American political activist for the Democratic Party, diplomat, and socialite. She married three important and powerful men, her first husband being Randolph Churchill, the son of prime minister Winston Churchill.
  • 1918 – Marian McPartland, English-American pianist and composer (d. 2013), was an English-American jazz pianist, composer and writer. She was the host of Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz on National Public Radio from 1978 to 2011.
  • 1915 – Sister Rosetta Tharpe, American singer-songwriter and guitarist (d. 1973), was an American singer, songwriter, guitarist, and recording artist. She attained popularity in the 1930s and 1940s with her gospel recordings, characterized by a unique mixture of spiritual lyrics and rhythmic accompaniment that was a precursor of rock and roll.
  • 1914 – Wendell Corey, American actor and politician (d. 1968). Corey was born in Dracut, Massachusetts, the son of Milton Rothwell Corey (October 24, 1879 – October 23, 1951) and Julia Etta McKenney (April 11, 1882 – June 16, 1947).
  • 1912 – Ralph Hauenstein, American businessman and philanthropist (d. 2016), was an American philanthropist, army officer and business leader, best known as a newspaper editor. His leadership has produced institutions such as the Hauenstein Center for Presidential Studies at Grand Valley State University, the Hauenstein Parkinsons and Neuroscience Centers at Saint Mary's Hospital and the Grace Hauenstein Library at Aquinas College.
  • 1906 – Abraham Beame, American accountant and politician, 104th Mayor of New York City (d. 2001), was the 104th Mayor of New York City, from 1974 to 1977. As mayor, he presided over the city during its fiscal crisis of the mid-1970s, during which the city was almost forced to declare bankruptcy.
  • 1906 – Ozzie Nelson, American actor and bandleader (d. 1975), was an American band leader, actor, director, and producer. He originated and starred in The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet, a radio and television series with his wife Harriet and two sons David and Ricky Nelson.
  • 1904 – B. F. Skinner, American psychologist and author (d. 1990). Burrhus Frederic Skinner (March 20, 1904 – August 18, 1990), commonly known as B.
  • 1903 – Edgar Buchanan, American actor (d. 1979), was an American actor with a long career in both film and television, most familiar today as Uncle Joe Carson from the Petticoat Junction, Green Acres, and The Beverly Hillbillies television sitcoms of the 1960s. On Petticoat Junction, he took over as proprietor of the Shady Rest Hotel following the 1968 death of show star Bea Benaderet, who had played Kate Bradley; Buchanan had starred as second lead since the series' inception.
  • 1895 – Fredric Wertham, German-American psychologist and author (d. 1981), was a German-American psychiatrist and author. Wertham had an early reputation as a progressive psychiatrist who treated poor black patients at his Lafargue Clinic when mental health services for blacks were uncommon due to racialist psychiatry.
  • 1890 – Lauritz Melchior, Danish-American tenor and actor (d. 1973), was a Danish-American opera singer. He was the pre-eminent Wagnerian tenor of the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s and has since come to be considered the quintessence of his voice type.
  • 1888 – Amanda Clement, American baseball player, umpire, and educator (d. 1971). Clement (March 20, 1888 – July 20, 1971) was the first woman paid to umpire a baseball game, and may have also been the first woman to referee a high school basketball game.
  • 1884 – Philipp Frank, Austrian-American physicist, mathematician, and philosopher (d. 1966), was a physicist, mathematician and also a philosopher during the first half of the 20th century. He was a logical-positivist, and a member of the Vienna Circle.
  • 1882 – Harold Weber, American golfer (d. 1933), was an American golfer who competed in the 1904 Summer Olympics. He was from Littleton, New Hampshire.
  • 1876 – Payne Whitney, American businessman and philanthropist (d. 1927), was an American businessman and member of the influential Whitney family. He inherited a fortune and enlarged it through business dealings, then devoted much of his money and efforts to a wide variety of philanthropic purposes.
  • 1856 – Frederick Winslow Taylor, American tennis player and engineer (d. 1915), was an American mechanical engineer who sought to improve industrial efficiency. He was one of the first management consultants.
  • 1836 – Ferris Jacobs, Jr., American general, lawyer, and politician (d. 1886), was an American officer and politician; he was a United States Representative from New York.
  • 1834 – Charles William Eliot, American mathematician and academic (d. 1926), was an American academic who was selected as Harvard's president in 1869. A member of the prominent Eliot family of Boston, he transformed the provincial college into the pre-eminent American research university.
  • 1831 – Solomon L. Spink, American lawyer and politician (d. 1881), was an American lawyer who served as a delegate for the Dakota Territory in the United States House of Representatives.
  • 1821 – Ned Buntline, American journalist, author, and publisher (d. 1886), was an American publisher, journalist, and writer.
  • 1811 – George Caleb Bingham, American painter and politician, State Treasurer of Missouri (d. 1879), was an American artist, soldier and politician known in his lifetime as "the Missouri Artist". Initially a Whig, he was elected as a delegate to the Missouri legislature before the American Civil War where he fought the extension of slavery westward.
  • 1612 – Anne Bradstreet, Puritan American poet (d. 1672), was the most prominent of early English poets of North America and first writer in England's North American colonies to be published. She is the first Puritan figure in American Literature and notable for her large corpus of poetry, as well as personal writings published posthumously.


  • 2017 – David Rockefeller, American billionaire and philanthropist (b. 1915)
  • 2014 – Tonie Nathan, American politician (b. 1923)
  • 2010 – Ai, American poet and academic (b. 1947)
  • 2010 – Stewart Udall, American soldier, lawyer, and politician, 37th United States Secretary of the Interior (b. 1920)
  • 2005 – Armand Lohikoski, American-Finnish director and screenwriter (b. 1912)
  • 2001 – Luis Alvarado, Puerto Rican-American baseball player (b. 1949)
  • 2000 – Gene Eugene, Canadian-American singer-songwriter and producer (b. 1961)
  • 1994 – Lewis Grizzard, American writer and humorist (b. 1946)
  • 1993 – Polykarp Kusch, German-American physicist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1911)
  • 1981 – Gerry Bertier, American football player (b. 1953)
  • 1974 – Chet Huntley, American journalist (b. 1911)
  • 1972 – Marilyn Maxwell, American actress (b. 1921)
  • 1966 – Johnny Morrison, American baseball player (b. 1895)
  • 1965 – Daniel Frank, American long jumper (b. 1882)
  • 1946 – Amadeus William Grabau, American-Chinese geologist, paleontologist, and academic (b. 1870)
  • 1945 – Dorothy Campbell, Scottish-American golfer (b. 1883)
  • 1933 – Giuseppe Zangara, Italian-American assassin of Anton Cermak (b. 1900)
  • 1930 – Arthur F. Andrews, American cyclist (b. 1876)
  • 1918 – Lewis A. Grant, American general and lawyer (b. 1828)
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