Sheikh Al Maarouf Day is a public holiday in the Comoros, a small archipelago island nation in the Indian Ocean. It is celebrated every year on March 18 to honor Said Muhammad bin Sheikh Ahmed, also known as Al Maarouf.
2014Russian and Crimean parliaments signed an accession treaty. This made the immediate admission of the Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol as federal subjects of Russian and part of the Russian Federation.
2008Died: Anthony Minghella, English award-winning director and screenwriter. He is best known for the films The English Patient, The Talented Mr. Ripley and The Reader.
1997Russian Antonov An-24 passenger aircraft broke while on route to Turkey. Its tail broke off that caused the plane crush and death of 50 people on board. This accident brought to the grounding of all An-24s.
1996A fire started in a nightclub Ozone Disco Club in Quezon City, Philippines. 162 were killed.
1990Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, Massachusetts, was robbed. 12 paintings, collectively worth around $300 million, were stolen, thus making it the largest art theft in U.S. history.
1989Born: Lily Collins, English-American actress and model, best known for roles in films The Blind Side, Abduction, Mirror Mirror.
1986Died: Bernard Malamud, American author, best remembered for novels The Magic Barrel, The Fixer and Man in the Drawer. The PEN/Malamud Award was introduced to honor his memory and recognize excellence in the art of the short story.
1980Died: Erich Fromm, German psychologist and philosopher of the Frankfurt School of critical theory. He introduced the term Consumer society, which is widely used to describe modern society.
1979Born: Adam Levine, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and actor, best known as the lead vocalist for Maroon 5.
1978Died: Peggy Wood, American actress, best remembered for the role Mother Abbess in The Sound of Music and for the role as Mama Marta Hansen in long-lasting TV series Mama.
1976Born: Giovanna Antonelli, Brazilian actress and producer, best known for roles in Brazilian TV series Tropichot, The Clone and Family Ties.
1969The U.S. began secretly bombing the Sihanouk Trail in Cambodia, used by communist forces to infiltrate South Vietnam.
1965Cosmonaut Aleksei Leonov left his spacecraft Voskhod 2 for 12 minutes, thus becoming the first person to walk in space.
1964Died: Sigfrid Edström, Swedish businessman, the 4th President of the International Olympic Committee. Edström helped organized the 1912 Summer Olympics in Stockholm and later played a very important role in reviving the Olympic Movement in the post-Second World War.
1959Born: Luc Besson, French director, producer, and screenwriter, best remembered for his films Léon: The Professional and The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc. Besson also founded EuropaCorp, one of the major feature film producers.
1950Born: Brad Dourif, American actor. He gained his fame for portrayal of Billy Bibbit in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. Today Dourif is best remembered for roles in the Child's Play franchise, Mississippi Burning, Ragtime, Dune, The Lord of the Rings and Deadwood.
1947Died: William C. Durant, American businessman, co-founder of General Motors and Chevrolet.
1944Mount Vesuvius, east of Naples, Italy, erupted, killing 26 people. Thousand had to flee their homes.
1937The New London School in New London, Texas, exploded, 300 people, mostly children, were killed. The explosion was caused by an electric sander switch spark, that ignited the gas-air mixture.
1932Born: John Updike, American author, poet, and critic. Updike is best remembered for his "Rabbit" series (Rabbit, Run; Rabbit Redux; Rabbis is Rich; Rabbit At Rest; Rabbit Remembered), the chronicles of the life of the middle-class everyman Harry "Rabbit" Angstrom.
1918Died: Henry Janeway Hardenbergh, American architect, best known for designs of hotels and apartment buildings. His most notable work is the Plaza Hotel in New York.
1913Died: George I of Greece, King of Greece from 1863 till his death in 1913. His reign was characterized by territorial gains as Greece established its place in pre-war Europe.
1907Died: Marcellin Berthelot, French chemist and politician, noted for synthesis of many organic compounds from inorganic substances. He provided a large amount of counter-evidence to the theory, that organic compounds require organism in their synthesis.
1907Born: Rosita Moreno, Spanish actress, who worked in Hollywood, Spaniard, Argentinian and Mexican cinema. Her career spanned for 20 years and Moreno featured in more than 30 films.
1904Born: Srečko Kosovel, a post-First World War Slovenian poet, who is today considered as one of the central Europe's major modernist poets. During his life Kosovel produced more than 1000 drafts, among them 500 complete poems with an unusually hight quality regarded to his age.
1858Born: Rudolf Diesel, German engineer, inventor of the diesel engine.
1850Henry Wells and William Fargo founded American Express, an American multinational financial service.
1845Died: John Chapman, often called Johnny Appleseed, American environmentalist, a pioneer nurseryman who introduced apple trees to large parts of Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and West Virginia.
1793The Republic of Mainz, the first republic in Germany, was declared by Andreas Joseph Hoffman.
1634Born: Madame de La Fayette, French author, the author of La Princesse de Clèves. Her novel became France's first historical novels and one of the earliest novels in literature.