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On This Day: May 31st

This is 151st day of the year and 214 days remain in the year.

in history
1790
The first U.S. Copyright Law was enacted, protecting books, maps, and other original materials.
1889
Heavy rains caused the South Fork Dam to collapse, sending 20 million tons of water into Johnstown, Pa. Over 2,200 people were killed and the town was nearly destroyed.
1911
The hull of the Titanic was launched in Belfast. At the ceremony, a White Star Line employee claimed, “Not even God himself could sink this ship.”
1961
South Africa became an independent republic.
1962

Former Gestapo official Adolf Eichmann was hanged in Israel.

1970
An earthquake in Peru left more than 50,000 dead.
2004
Alberta Martin, 97, one of the last widows of a U.S. Civil War veteran, died. She had married Confederate veteran William Martin in 1927 when she was 21 and he was 81.
2010
Nine people are dead after an Israeli navy commando attacks a flotilla of cargo ships and passenger boats on their way to Gaza to provide aid and supplies for the area.
May 31 BirthdaysPatricia Roberts Harris 1924–85, U.S. government official, born in Mattoon, Ill.
Joe NamathAmerican Football Player
Norman Vincent Pealeclergyman
Walt Whitmanpoet
Clint Eastwoodactor, director, producer
Rainier IIIprince of Monaco
Brooke Shieldsactress, model



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Note: Dates in the Islamic calendar are provided for planning purposes only, and calculated with the hdate Islamic calendar program for moonrise in Boston, Masschusetts. Depending on your location and other factors, this result may differ from actual religious observances by one day. Please consult your local religious authority for any religious determinations of hejiric date.