March 3, 1961
JFK DEDICATES NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION BUILDING
President John F.Kennedy was greeted by Claude B. Kelley, president of the National Wildlife Federation, today as JFK came to dedicate the new federal building in Washington, D.C.
March 3, 1961
JFK MEETS WITH HOLYOAK OF NEW ZEALAND
The President of the United States hosted a luncheon at the White House today for New Zealand’s Prime Minister, Keith J. Holyoak.*
Keith J. Holyoak of New Zealand
*JFK also met privately with presidential assistant, Arthur M. Schlesinger, who advised him that Fidel Castro was reportedly losing popularity in Latin America.
March 3, 1961
HAMMARSKJOLD ASKS FOR UN TROOPS IN THE CONGO
At the United Nations in New York City today, Secretary General Dag Hammarskjold asked for $135 million to keep UN forces in the Congo for the rest of the year.
March 3, 1965
USAF STRIKES TARGETS IN LAOS
30 US Air Force jets struck targets today in Laos along the Ho Chi Minh Trail.*
*The following day 2000 students attacked the US embassy in Moscow in protest. Prime Minister Lester Pearson of Canada expressed concern that the US attack on Laos might escalate the war.
March 3, 1931
STAR SPANGLED BANNER BECOMES NATIONAL ANTHEM
President Herbert Hoover signed a law today making the Star Spangled Banner the official National Anthem of the United States of America.
The words of the song were originally penned by Francis Scott Key on September 14, 1814 during the British attack on Fort McHenry near Baltimore, Maryland. The attack occurred during the War of 1812.
The lyrics were published in Baltimore on September 20, 1814 & later set to the tune “To Anacreon in Heaven”.
President Woodrow Wilson signed an Executive Order in 1916 formally making the song “Our National Anthem.” The legislation signed today by President Hoover makes it official.
Fort McHenry Flag
March 3, 1877
HAYES SWORN IN SECRETLY
Rutherford B. Hayes, having been declared the winner of the presidential election of 1876 yesterday by a special election commission, was sworn in today in a private ceremony in the Red Room of the White House.
Hayes, a Republican from Ohio, lost the popular vote to Samuel Tilden of New York, but because there were 20 disputed electoral votes, the House of Representatives was given authority by the US Constitution to determine the winner.
The official date of the inaugural would be tomorrow, March 4, but since it is on a Sunday, there will be another inaugural ceremony for the President on Monday, March 5.
March 3, 1865
FREEMAN’S BUREAU CREATED
President Abraham Lincoln signed a law today creating the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen & Abandoned Lands.
The federal agency will oversee the difficult transition of blacks from slavery to freedom.
General Oliver O. Howard is to serve as the agency’s commissioner.
The Freedmen’s Bureau will provide medical care, education & land distribution for former slaves.*
*The Bureau will exist for 7 years with General Howard as its commissioner for the entire time. This marks the 1st time the federal government is to be involved in social welfare & labor relations.
John Hopkinson Plantation, Edisto Island, S.C.
March 3, 1820
MISSOURI COMPROMISE BILL PASSES CONGRESS
The Congress has passed a bill to resolve the 1st serious problem the nation has faced over the slavery issue.
The law makes Missouri a slave state while Maine is to become a free state.
This will keep a balance in the number of slave & free states in the United States Senate.
The law also states that slavery will be prohibited in the territory, which is part of the original Louisiana Purchase, north of the 36th parallel.*
*The Missouri Compromise of 1820 will be repealed by the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854 which will allow a popular vote on the slavery issue north of the 36th parallel.