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March 21

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March 21 in history:

  • 1960: Police in South Africa opened fire on a large crowd of black Africans demonstrating in a township near Johannesburg; at least 67 people died in what is called the Sharpeville Massacre.
  • 1918: German general Erich Ludendorff led shock troops along a 60-mi (100-km) front and rolled back the Allies as much as 40 mi (65 km) to begin the Second Battle of the Somme during World War I.
  • 1804: The Napoleonic Code was promulgated in France, replacing a collection of Roman law, local customs, and ecclesiastical law.
  • 1617: The American Indian princess Pocahontas, who befriended the English colony at Jamestown, Virginia, supposedly saved the life of Capt. John Smith, and became the wife of John Rolfe, died in London.