It’s St. Paddy’s Day in Ireland, a day that is now celebrated around the world. Here are some of the events and famous birthdays in history today.
432: The History of St. Patrick’s Day
St. Patrick’s Day is a time to celebrate the patron saint of Ireland. This is due to an event that happened on this day in history, traditionally given for this year. However, there are debates over the exact time. At 16 years old, Patrick — likely born in Scotland — was captured by Irish pirates and was sold as a slave. For the next six years, he turned to faith for comfort. He was able to escape and get back to his family, but he heard the voices of the Irish calling him back. He was ordained as a priest and returned to Ireland in 433, where he remained for the next 40 years in poverty while building churches and preaching the Gospel. He died on March 17, 461. There have been countless legends around the man since then.
1762: The First St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Today in history saw the first ever parade for St. Patrick’s Day, in honor of Ireland’s patron saint, St. Patrick. The first parade was held by British army serving Irish soldiers in New York. There may have been parades before this, as it was celebrated long before this date, but this was the first recorded parade. From the mid-1800s, the celebrations became a more major thing as more Irish immigrated to America. Now, it is celebrated around the world, regardless of nationality.
1906: More Than 1,200 Die in Taiwan Earthquake
An earthquake devastated Taiwan, with more than 1,200 losing their lives. The damaged was estimated in the millions of damage. The Baishiku and Chinsekiryo faults just under Formosa (known as Taiwan today) moved and caused the 7.1 magnitude earthquake. Japan felt some of the tremors, showing the force of it. Kagi suffered most of the casualties, where people were crushed to death in their homes. Aftershocks were strong throughout the next day, making it very difficult to rescue those still alive. It would just be a month and a day later that San Francisco would be hit with the 8.3 magnitude earthquake.
1995: Death of Ronnie Kray
One of the Kray twins, Ronnie, died on this day in history. He collapsed while in his Broadmoor ward, where he was serving a life sentence. The 61-year-old had been part of “The Firm,” a British gang, and was said to have suffered a heart attack. Despite being married, he was a homosexual and was transferred to Heatherwood Hospital and then Wexham Park hospital before his death. Ronnie had been deemed insane, meaning he had to carry out his prison sentence in the mental hospital Broadmoor, where he shared a ward with Peter Sutcliffe, the Yorkshire Ripper. He was survived by his older and twin brothers Charlie and Reggie. The Kray twins’ lives have been portrayed in Legend starring Tom Hardy as both roles.
Famous Birthdays on March 17
King James IV of Scotland–1473
Church leader Thomas Boston–1676
First moderator of the Free Church of Scotland, Thomas Chalmers–1780
Confederate general Patrick R. Cleburne—1828
Abolitionist and author Daniel Conway Moncure—1832
First female cabinet leader in Britain, Margaret Bondfield–1873
Golfer Bobby Jones—1902
Jazz pianist and singer Nat King Cole—1919
Vanilla Sky actor Kurt Russell—1951
Forest Gump and CSI: New York actor Gary Sinise—1955
Wrestler Samoa Joe—1979
Reality star Rob Kardashian—1987
Birthdays from HistoryNet.com and FamousBirthdays.com
Featured image from Deposit Photos
St. Patrick by Sicarr (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Patrick#/media/File:Saint_Patrick_(window).jpg). Used under the CC-2.0 license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/
King James IV of Scotland: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:James_IV_of_Scotland.jpg
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