On this day, March 17 …

1762: New York City holds its first St. Patrick’s Day parade.

Also on this day:

  • 1776: The Revolutionary War Siege of Boston ends as British forces evacuate the city.
  • 1906: President Theodore Roosevelt first likens crusading journalists to a man with “the muckrake in his hand” (“muckrakers”) in a speech to the Gridiron Club in Washington, D.C.
  • 1912: The Camp Fire Girls organization is incorporated in Washington D.C., two years to the day after it was founded in Thetford, Vt. (The group is now known as Camp Fire.)
  • 1958: The U.S. Navy launches the Vanguard 1 satellite.
  • 1959: The Dalai Lama flees Tibet for India in the wake of a failed uprising by Tibetans against Chinese rule.
  • 1968: A peaceful anti-Vietnam War protest in London is followed by a riot outside the U.S. Embassy where more than 200 people are arrested and more than 80 people are reported injured.

Released prisoner of war Lt. Col. Robert L. Stirm is greeted by his family at Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, Calif., as he returns home from the Vietnam War, March 17, 1973. In the lead is Stirm’s daughter Lori, 15; followed by son Robert, 14; daughter Cynthia, 11; wife Loretta and son Roger, 12. (AP Photo/Sal Veder)

  • 1973: U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Robert L. Stirm, a freed prisoner of the Vietnam War, is joyously greeted by his family at Travis Air Force Base in California in a scene captured by Associated Press photographer Slava “Sal” Veder in a photograph that would win the Pulitzer Prize and become iconic.
  • 2006: Federal regulators report the deaths of two women in addition to four others who had taken the abortion pill RU-486; Planned Parenthood says it will immediately stop disregarding the approved instructions for the drug’s use. 
  • 2006: Fashion designer Oleg Cassini dies in Long Island, N.Y., at age 92.
  • 2009: U.S. journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee are detained by North Korea while reporting on North Korean refugees living across the border in China. (Both would be convicted of entering North Korea illegally and sentenced to 12 years of hard labor; both would be freed in August 2009 after former President Bill Clinton met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Il.)
  • 2009: The Seattle Post-Intelligencer publishes its final print edition.
  • 2013: Two members of Steubenville, Ohio’s high school football team are found guilty of raping a drunken 16-year-old girl and sentenced to at least a year in juvenile prison in a case that rocks the Rust Belt city of 18,000.
  • 2014: Russian President Vladimir Putin recognizes Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula as an “independent and sovereign country,” ignoring sanctions imposed by the United States and European countries.
  • 2018: Superstore company Fred Meyer announces that it would stop selling guns and ammunition; in the aftermath of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., the company had said it would stop selling firearms to anyone under 21.



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