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Today in History History
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Today in History historic events
March 20th Today in History

Famous People & Celebrities Born on March 20th:

  • Hal Linden
    (1931) - Played Captain Barney Miller on Barney Miller. His real name is Harold Lipshitz. Although Linden is best known as the star of Barney Miller, he started out as a singer and clarinet player during the latter part of the big band years. He says the difference between entertainers now and back then is that there are very few performers around these days who can do a complete show filled with singing, dancing and showmanship.
     
  • Carl Reiner
    (1922) - Actor, comedian, writer, director and producer. Father of film director Rob Reiner. In 1997 Reiner and Mel Brooks reunited in an L.A. studio to record The 2000-Year-Old Man -- In The Year 2000: The Album. It was the fifth sequel in the duo's 2000-Year-Old Man series. Reiner says the reason for the reunion was simple: he's constantly accosted by strangers asking him when he and Mel are going to do another album. Reiner won Emmys for the Dick Van Dyke Show (which he produced, co-wrote and played the role of Alan Brady).
     
  • Fred Rogers
    (1928) - Former host of Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood. Rogers says it only seems like yesterday when he zipped up his cardigan, tied his blue sneakers and asked, "Won't you be my neighbor?" for the very first time in 1968. His mother knitted the first batch of zippered cardigans that make Mr. Rogers seem so comfortable to kids. He has since worn through an average of 1.5 sweaters for each year he's been on the air. Mr. Rogers says he doesn't listen to punk rock, but he believes the music may actually have some positive benefits on children since punk and heavy metal express anger and aggression in a way that doesn't hurt anyone. As a child, Rogers would express his own anger by playing the piano.
     
  • Jerry Reed
    (1937) - Singer and actor. "When You're Hot, You're Hot" (1971)
     
  • Brian Mulroney
    (1939) - Former Canadian prime minister.
     
  • John Delancie
    (1948) - He's best known for his role as the evil "Q" on Star Trek: The Next Generation. DeLancie has a soft spot in his heart for the forgotten art of radio drama and has teamed up with fellow Trekker Leonard Nimoy to produce a series of radio plays featuring classic sci-fi novels.
     
  • Bobby Orr
    (1948) - The former Boston Bruins defense won the Defensive Player of the Year title more than any other player in eight consecutive seasons from 1968 to 1975.
     
  • William Hurt
    (1950) - Hurt admits there was a time when acting on stage made him lip-locked -- literally. When he first started acting, he suffered from severe stage fright that would force his lips to clamp shut. Hurt claims he often had to turn his head away from the audience and pry his mouth open with his fingers just to get his lines out. The actor finally solved his stage fright after he learned a posture alignment method called the "Alexander Technique," which helped him unblock his "energy." Hurt flicks: Lost in Space (1998), The Proposition (1998), Jane Eyre (1996), Trial by Jury (1994), Mr. Wonderful (1993), Kiss of the Spider Woman (1985), The Big Chill (1983)
     
  • Spike Lee
    (1957) - The director's real name is Shelton Jackson Lee. Bamboozled (2000), Summer of Sam (1999), He Got Game (1998), Clockers (1995), Crooklyn (1994), Malcolm X (1992), Jungle Fever (1991), Mo' Better Blues (1990).
     
  • Holly Hunter
    (1958) - 1993 Oscar for The Piano. Hunter was the 1997 recipient of High Society magazine's "Cinema Sex Award" for her on-screen romp with Rosanna Arquette in the 1996 flick Crash. Other flicks: Levity (2003), Goodbye Hello (2002), O Brother, Where Art Thou? (2000).
     
  • Kathy Ireland
    (1963) - The model states she was born on March 20, 1963, not on March 8 or in 1962 as reported by some sources.
     
  • Michael Rapaport
    (1970) - Actor. Plays Danny Hanson on Boston Public. A Cold Day in August (2002), Paper Soldiers (2002), Triggermen (2002), Comic Book Villains (2002), On the Sixth Day (2000), Numbers (2000), Kiss Toledo Goodbye (1999), Cop Land (1997), The Pallbearer (1996), Mighty Aphrodite (1995).
     
Famous and Noteworthy Events on March 20th:
(1852) - The anti-slavery novel "Uncle Tom's Cabin" was published for the first time. Harriet Beecher Stowe's classic was an instant success, selling 300,000 copies in its first year of publication. Abraham Lincoln reportedly told Stowe that she was "the little woman who wrote the book that started [the Civil War]."

(1899) - Martha M. Place became the first woman to be executed in the electric chair. Ms. Place was electrocuted at Sing Sing Prison for the murder of her stepdaughter, Ida.

(1969) - John Lennon and Yoko Ono were married in Gibraltar. After the ceremony, the couple flew to Amsterdam and staged their famous "Bed-In for Peace" in the Presidential Suite of the Amsterdam Hilton.

(1970) - David Bowie married Angela Barnett.

(1971) - "Me And Bobby McGee" by Janis Joplin was the No. 1 song. The tune peaked at the No. 1 spot five months after Joplin's death.

(1974) - Network TV newscaster Chet Huntley died of lung cancer at the age of 62.

(1976) - Newspaper heiress Patty Hearst was convicted of armed robbery for her role in a terrorist hold-up of a San Francisco bank.

(1987) - The federal government approved the use of the first drug to benefit AIDS patients: AZT.

(1990) - A speeding truck on a Pennsylvania highway crashed into singer Gloria Estefan's tour bus. Estefan's nearly fatal injuries required 400 stitches and the insertion of two 8-inch titanium rods on both sides of her spine. Her 1991 hit song, "Coming Out Of The Dark," is based on the incident.

(1990) - The Los Angeles Lakers retired the number "33" which was worn by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

(1991) - Eric Clapton's 4-year-old son died after he fell 53 stories from an open window. Clapton wrote the hit song "Tears In Heaven" in memory of his little boy.

MORE HISTORIC BIRTHS & EVENTS IN MARCH :
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