We all know March is the third month of the year. However, it wasn’t always that way. On the earliest Roman calendars, March was the first month of the year and marked the beginning of war season. It’s probably why the month was named after Mars the Roman god of war. So, what other facts could we discover about March? Below are a few.
Let’s hear it for the ladies.
From Abigail Adams urging the Continental Congress to “remember the ladies” to Rosa Parks refusing to give up her bus seat, women have made their mark on history.
In 1978, a group in Santa Rosa, California, planned the first Women’s History Week to coincide with International Women’s Day on March 8. The movement quickly spread to communities across the country and grew into Women’s History Month. Congress designated March as Women’s History Month in order to celebrate contributions women have made to American History. Some women’s history facts include:
- Mary McLeod Bethune opened a private school for African-American students in Florida in the early 1900’s. She later became the first black woman to hold a high position in the U.S. government when she was selected as a member of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “Black Cabinet.”
- Actress Hedy Lamarr invented a new communication that used “frequency hopping” which prevented the interception of radio waves. While the Navy never used her patent, Lamarr’s invention went on to form the basis for WiFi, GPS, and Bluetooth.
- Wilma Mankiller was the first woman to become Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation. She led the largest tribe in the United States from 1985 to 1995.
Happy birthday, Yellowstone!
For 150 years, visitors have been able to explore Yellowstone’s nearly 3,500 square miles of natural wonders, most notably the Old Faithful geyser. Yellowstone National Park was established as the world’s first national park on March 1, 1872. Thanks to archeological sites and historical stories, there is proof of people in Yellowstone more than 11,000 years ago. According the National Park Service website, 27 tribes have historic connections to the lands and resources within what is now Yellowstone National Park including the Comanche, Crow, and Kiowa. With a history that long, its status as a national park seems fairly new.
For the record.
In his third season with the Philadelphia Warriors, Wilt Chamberlain set the single-game scoring record for the NBA. On March 2, 1962, Chamberlain scored 100 points in a game against the New York Knicks, leading to the Warriors’ 169-147 victory. The previous record was held by Chamberlain himself having racked up 78 points in a single game the December before. Unfortunately, there is no known video footage of the game as it was not televised. Chamberlain still holds the record.
Singing for change.
The song “We Are The World” was released March 7, 1985. After hearing “Do They Know It’s Christmas” by the UK group Band Aid, Harry Belafonte teamed up with Ken Kragen to create an American benefit single to aid African famine relief. The pair enlisted Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie to write the song, which received Quadruple Platinum certification from the Recording Industry of America. A group of 46 performers lent their vocals to the track. The song promotion and merchandise raised more than $63 million for humanitarian aid in Africa and the United States.
A history-making doll.
Global icon Barbara Millicent Roberts, better known as Barbie, made her debut March 9, 1959, at the American Toy Fair in New York City. Mattel, Inc. co-founder Ruth Handler noticed her daughter Barbara preferred to play make-believe with paper dolls of adult women rather than popular baby dolls of the time. Mattel bought the rights to Lilli, a popular German doll, and based Barbie’s likeness off the doll. Barbie’s popularity led to the creation of her companions Ken, Midge, and Skipper. Since 1959, Mattel has created more than 170 dolls for children to imagine with including Barbies in the STEM field, a Barbie in a wheelchair, and Barbies that represent different races.
Team Shortbread or Team Trefoils®?
The group most well-known for selling cookies has a history dating back to the early 1900’s. Juliette Gordon Low founded Girl Scouts March 12, 1912, in Savannah, Georgia, with a troop of 18 girls who all shared the belief they could do anything. What Low may not have known at the time was how synonymous her program would become with baked goods. Girl Scouts have sold cookies since 1917 to finance troop activities. By 1936, commercial bakers were producing cookies to be sold by Girl Scouts nationwide. Having different bakeries is why cookie names vary based on region. If you love Samoas® your cookies are made at the Little Brownie Bakers bakery; if you prefer Caramel deLites® (which is the same thing) your cookies were made by ABC Bakers.
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That’s a lot of Pi.
If your knowledge of Pi began and ended in middle school, you aren’t alone. But that doesn’t mean we can’t still celebrate it! March 14 is dedicated to celebrating pi because the date aligns with the first three digits of pi (3.14). Many people celebrate Pi Day by eating pie, having a pi recitation contest, or wearing things with pi on them. I’ll use any reason to have some pie, but if you decide to have a pi recitation contest, just know that the record for known digits of pi is 62.8 trillion. Good luck!
More than green beer and corned beef.
Did you know that one of the patron saints of Ireland wasn’t even Irish? Born in Roman Britain, Saint Patrick was brought to Ireland as a slave at age 16. He escaped and fled to England only to return to Ireland years later as a Christian missionary. St. Patrick is believed to have died March 17, 461, and has been celebrated since the 10th century, although the first official feast is said to have taken place in 1631 and the parades didn’t start until the 1700’s in America. According to legend, he used the shamrock to explain the Holy Trinity. And, while we all wear green to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day today, historically, knights of the Order of St. Patrick wore blue.
What do you want to celebrate today? Well that is all up to you! March 26 is designated as Make Up Your Own Holiday Day. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by daily activities, which is why Make Up Your Own Holiday Day was created. It is a chance to get people out of their routine and celebrate something purely for the fun of it. Who knows, maybe your made-up holiday will take off. After all, every holiday has to start somewhere.
TV Trivia for $200, please.
This game show was created by Merv Griffin and first aired March 30, 1964, on NBC. If we were playing for points, the correct response would be: What is Jeopardy!? Originally hosted by Art Flemming, Jeopardy! tests the general knowledge of both contestants and viewers. The show aired during the day until 1975, along with a weekly nighttime version from 1974-75. From October 1978 to March 1979, Art Flemming also hosted a revival called The All-New Jeopardy!. The syndicated version viewers have come to know today has aired daily since 1984.
March is the first month of spring, beginning with the spring equinox March 20. As the weather warms up, house hunting becomes a little easier, and a bit more competitive. Go into your home search prepared by getting preapproved for a mortgage. Contact your local PrimeLending loan officer today to discover how much house you can afford.