|General Bernardo de Galvez|
March 9, 1454 - Amerigo Vespucci was born in Florence, Italy. Matthias Ringmann, a German mapmaker, named the American continent in his honor.
March 9, 1772 – Ferdinand Claiborne was born in Sussex County, Va.
March 9, 1781 - Spanish General Bernardo de Galvez began the siege of Pensacola, Florida.
March 9, 1788 - Connecticut became the fifth state to join the United States.
March 9, 1814 – Edmund P. Gaines, who arrested Aaron Burr near Fort Stoddert in 1807, was promoted to brigadier general during the War of 1812 and commanded the post at Fort Erie after the U.S. capture.
March 9, 1818 – Following the creation of the Alabama Territory in 1817, Col. John Crowell, then a Creek Indian agent, was chosen (without opposition) to represent the territory in Congress. His term would expire on March 3, 1819.
March 9, 1832 - Abraham Lincoln announced that he would run for a political office for the first time. He was unsuccessful in his run for a seat in the Illinois state legislature.
March 9, 1840 – Confederate soldier Arthur B. Hale, who would go on to serve in Co. F of the 36th Alabama Infantry, was born.
March 9, 1859 - The National Association of Baseball Players adopted the rule that limited the size of bats to no more than 2-1/2 inches in diameter.
March 9, 1862 – During the five-hour Battle of Hampton Roads, Va., the USS Monitor dueled to a standstill with the C.S.S. Virginia (originally the C.S.S. Merrimack) in one of the most famous moments in naval history - the first time two ironclads faced each other in a naval engagement. During the battle, the two ships circled one another, jockeying for position as they fired their guns. The cannon balls simply deflected off the iron ships. In the early afternoon, the Virginia pulled back to Norfolk. Neither ship was seriously damaged, but the Monitor effectively ended the short reign of terror that the Confederate ironclad had brought to the Union navy.
March 9, 1864 - U.S. President Abraham Lincoln appointed General Ulysses S. Grant to command all of the armies of the United States. General William T. Sherman succeeded Grant as the commander in the western theater.
March 9, 1871 – After the state legislature was petitioned to incorporate the City of Greenville, the legislature granted a charter on this day, which was accepted by a vote of the people on May 20, 1871. John B. Lewis was elected the first Mayor of the City of Greenville.
March 9, 1913 – Virginia Woolf delivered the manuscript for her first novel, “The Voyage Out,” to the Duckworth Publishing House.
March 9, 1918 – One of the 20th Century’s best-selling novelists, Mickey Spillane, was born in New York City.
March 9, 1934 - Yuri Gagarin was born in Klushino, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union. Gagarin would go on to become the first human to both enter space and orbit the Earth. Seven years following his historic achievements, Gagarin died in a helicopter crash, the cause of which remains a mystery to this day.
March 9, 1943 – An 81-foot-long, two-man Japanese “suicide” submarine that was captured at Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941 was put on display from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. in front of Greenville City Hall on Commerce Street in Greenville, Ala. During a U.S. Treasury Department tour of the state, the sub was also show in Mobile (March 8), Montgomery (March 10, Sylacauga, Birmingham and Anniston. On its way from Mobile to Greenville, the sub passed through Evergreen, McKenzie and Georgiana.
March 9, 1960 – Major League Baseball catcher Benito Santiago was born in Ponce, Puerto Rico. He would go on to play for the San Diego Padres, the Florida Marlins, the Cincinnati Reds, the Philadelphia Phillies, the Toronto Blue Jays, the Chicago Cubs, the San Francisco Giants, the Kansas City Royals and the Pittsburgh Pirates.
March 9, 1964 - In the Alabama case New York Times v. Sullivan, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down a landmark free speech decision. A Montgomery city commissioner, L. B. Sullivan, had sued the Times for running a factually inaccurate ad that criticized the city's handling of civil rights demonstrators. Citing the First Amendment the court ruled against Sullivan, thereby strengthening the right to freely criticize government.
March 9, 1972 – Bruce Dale Jones of Evergreen, 20, was killed in action at Tan Son Nhut Airbase in Gia Dinh, South Vietnam, where he was serving as a sergeant in the Air Force’s 377th Security Police Squadron.
March 9, 1973 – Major League Baseball third baseman Aaron Boone was born in La Mesa, Calif. He would go on to play for the Cincinnati Reds, the New York Yankees, the Cleveland Indians, the Florida Marlins, the Washington Nationals and the Houston Astros.
March 9, 1978 – The Evergreen Courant reported that former Evergreen High School basketball star David Thomas, a 6-foot-5 senior at Jacksonville State, “closed out a brilliant basketball career” by scoring 32 points to lead his team to a win over arch-rival North Alabama at Pete Matthews Coliseum. He made 13-of-15 shots from the floor, including two slam dunks, and made six-of-nine free throws. He also had nine rebounds and blocked two shots.
March 9, 1985 - "Gone With The Wind" went on sale in video stores across the U.S. for the first time.
March 9, 2001 - A movie version of Alabama author Linda Howard's “Loving Evangeline” was released.
March 9, 2004 – The Alabama Senate voted, two to one (14-6), to approve House Joint Resolution No. 100, which proposed designating Conecuh Ridge Alabama Fine Whiskey as the Alabama State Spirit.