March 27, 1963
JFK & 1ST LADY WELCOME KING HASSAN II
President & Mrs. Kennedy welcomed King Hassan II of Morocco & his sister, Princess Lalla Nezha, at Union Station today.
The King, who came to the throne in 1961, is 33 years old. He & his sister brought gifts for Caroline & John John.
Later a state dinner was held in honor of the King at the White House.
In his toast, JFK reminded the audience that Morocco was the 1st nation to recognize American independence & talked of the close relationship between the United States & Morocco.
The President also read excerpts from a letter written by George Washington to the King of Morocco.
After the dinner, the film Brigadoon was screened in the East Room.*
*King Hussan II ruled Morocco until his death in 1999 at the age of 70. The reigning king of the nation today is Hussan’s son, King Mohammed VI.
King Hussan II of Morocco (1961-1999)
March 27, 1962
JFK ELABORATES ON NUCLEAR WAR COMMENT
The Kennedy administration today elaborated on a comment made by the President published in a recent article by Stewart Alsop in The Saturday Evening Post.
JFK was quoted in the article as saying the United States…
“must maintain a sufficient margin of superiority in nuclear striking power so Khrushchev will be certain that, if he strikes first, he will receive a devastating counter blow.”
“But Khrushchev must not be certain, that, where his vital interests are threatened, the United States will never strike first.”
To clarify this statement, the administration has announced that its nuclear program is structured to act as a deterrent to war….but that the “nuclear option” will not be taken off the table if the U.S. is threatened by a Soviet conventional-weaponry offensive.
March 27, 1912
1ST LADY & WIFE OF JAPANESE AMBASSADOR PLANT CHERRY TREES ON THE POTOMAC
Helen Taft & Viscountess Chinda, the wife of the Japanese ambassador to the United States, planted 2 Japanese cherry trees on the North bank of the Potomac River today.
First Lady Helen Taft
The idea to plant Japanese cherry trees along the Potomac originated with Eliza Ruhamah Scidmore who, after her 1st visit to Japan in 1905, suggested it to government officials.
Eliza Ruhamah Scidmore
It has taken years of campaigning to make the idea a reality.
The trees were a gift from Yuko Ozaki, the mayor of Tokyo.*
*The National Cherry Tree Festival began in 1935 & continues to this day. In 1965, Japan gave 3800 more Yoshino trees to the United States which were accepted by Lady Bird Johnson.
Lady Bird Johnson (1965)
March 27, 1836
MASSACRE AT GOLIAD
The Mexican Army under General Santa Anna continues its effort to put down a revolt in Texas.
Following its victory at the Alamo, 300 Texan rebels under James W. Fannin along with 100 more were captured & executed by Mexican forces under General Urrea, Santa Anna’s chief lieutenant.
Fannin, who had been unsure whether he should take his troops to the Alamo, found his position at Goliad completely surrounded & had no choice but to surrender.
The orders from Santa Anna at Goliad were the same they had been at the Alamo, “no quarter”, or no prisoners would be taken alive.*
*Along with the Alamo, Goliad will inspire & unify Texans to defeat Santa Anna at San Jacinto with the battle cries “Remember the Alamo” & “Remember Goliad”.
March 27, 1829
JACKSON APPOINTS JOHN EATON WAR SECRETARY
President Andrew Jackson has appointed his good friend, John Eaton, Secretary of War.
The appointment has come under immediate criticism for the fact that Eaton recently married former barmaid with a scandalous past, Margaret “Peggy’ O’Neal Timberlake.
Margaret “Peggy” O’Neale Eaton
The new War Secretary’s wife had worked at her father’s hotel, The Franklin House, where she was known to flirt & gossip with Congressmen & Senators.
She married Timberlake, a 39 year old sailor on the USS Constitution, when she was just 17.
He died at sea under mysterious circumstances less than a year before she married Eaton.*
*The Eaton or “Petticoat Affair” will result in turmoil in President Jackson’s cabinet. The Vice-President’s wife, Mrs. John C. Calhoun, leads an internal revolt over the issue which results in Jackson replacing his entire cabinet.
Peggy Eaton (1870s)
Photo by Matthew Brady &
Levin Corbin Handy