On March 30…

1842 – Dr. Crawford W. Long performed the first operation on a patient using ether.

 

1853 – Vincent Van Gogh was born in Groot-Zundert, Holland.

 

1858 – Hyman L. Lipman of Philadelphia, PA patented the pencil.

 

1867 – Secretary of State William H. Seward negotiated the purchase of “Russian America” – better known as Alaska – for 2 cents an acre.

 

1870 – The 15th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, granting African-American men the right to vote, was ratified.

1909 – The Queensboro Bridge, the first double-decker bridge, opened in New York City.

 

1948 – Soviet Premier Joseph Stalin ordered all road and rail access to Berlin, Germany blocked, in what later became known as the “Berlin Blockade.”

 

1965 – A bomb exploded in a car parked in front of the U.S. Embassy in Saigon, killing 22 people, injuring 183 others and virtually destroying the building.

1981 – President Ronald Reagan was shot by John W. Hinckley, Jr., as the President walked to his limousine in Washington, D.C.  Press Secretary James Brady and two police officers were also wounded in the attack.

1987 – Vincent van Gogh’s Sunflowers brought $39.85 million, more than triple the record for an auctioned painting.

 

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