What Happened on March 12?

  • The Truman Doctrine was announced. (1947) The Truman Doctrine was essentially a policy of providing aid to countries that were fighting Communism, or no longer wished to be Communist. It shaped US foreign policy for over 50 years, and was considered the tacit declaration of the Cold War.

  • Gandhi began the Dandi March. (1930) The Dandi March was one of Gandhi's first big acts of civil disobedience. He and some 200 other people marched 240 miles (almost 400 km) to the sea to get salt for free, thus bypassing the unpopular British salt tax.

  • Franklin Roosevelt delivered the first "fireside chat." (1933) Having such an intimate connection with the president was unheard of at the time, and Roosevelt's radio broadcasts were extremely popular. In the chats, Roosevelt discussed current events, and why he made certain policy decisions.

  • Coca-Cola® was sold in bottles for the first time. (1894) Joseph Biedenharn, a confectioner in Vicksburg, Mississippi, bottled Coca-Cola® and sold it for the first time on this day. It was an immediate hit, and Biedenharn bottles are prized by collectors today.

  • The first legal lottery tickets in the US were sold. (1964) The New Hampshire Lottery sold its first tickets on this day. It was the first legally operated lottery in the US, and by the 20th century was selling more than $4 billion USD worth of tickets a year.

  • Moscow became the capitol of Russia. (1918) The capitol had been St. Petersburg for over 200 years, but that changed after the February Revolution in 1917. A few months later, it became the capitol of the USSR as well as the central headquarters of the Red Army.

  • The Girl Guides — later the Girl Scouts — was founded. (1912) The movement was founded by Juliette Low with a small pension left to her by her husband after she met the founder of the Boy Scouts, Robert Badon-Powell. The movement was immediately popular, and by the 21st century there were more than 2 million Girl Scouts.

  • Chinese laborers were prevented from entering the US. (1888) China signed a treaty with the US on this day to prevent Chinese laborers from immigrating to the US. At the time, Chinese were the only immigrants who faced such legal barriers in coming to America.

  • Germany annexed Austria. (1938) After an orchestrated "plea" for help from Austria, Hitler invaded it and annexed it, calling it an anschluss or peaceful union. It was one of a series of first moves in Hitler's invasion of Europe in World War II.

  • Jack Kerouac was born. (1922) Kerouac was a poster child for the rebellious 60s subculture, and is still idolized today for his book On the Road.

Discussion Comments


Nowadays, how many lotteries are legally operated in the US?


One thing I really admire about Gandhi is his resistance and dexterity. No matter how much the massacre and violence went on, he simply turned the other cheek. Through his trials, he brought down the British Empire. I find this admirable because of how easy it is to want to strike others back, especially when they deserve it.

However, we have to remember to be the better person, not stooping to their level. As an example, look at the stark contrast between Martin Luther King, and Malcolm X, both who were also caught in violent struggles. While Martin Luther King resorted to non-violence, Malcolm X was almost as hostile as his oppressors.


Whether you like it not, Coca-Cola® is without a doubt, one of the most famous drinks of all time. Also, I find it very funny how even till this day, many people collect the bottles and caps, even if they don't particularly care for the drink itself. It really shows the popularity of it all.

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