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March Almanac: On these days in our city’s history …



March 1, 1991: Of the total convict population in Nevada’s prisons, 131 inmates have tested positive for the AIDS virus.

March 2, 2002: A government study concludes that about 15,000 people have died in the United States from cancer caused by radioactive fallout from nuclear weapons tests in Nevada.

March 3, 1991: A recent report reveals public employees flying between Vegas and Reno cost taxpayers $3.2 million in 1990, about $266,000 per month.

March 4, 1930: A newspaper headline reads VEGAS CRADLE OF HUMAN RACE, after a 20,000-year-old civilization is dug up under four feet of ancient sloth droppings near Las Vegas.

March 5, 1955: Nevada Test Site security guard Eugene Haynes, 39, has been informed the amount of accidental radiation he received, 39 roentgens, following a March 1 detonation, will not cause serious or permanent injury.

March 6, 2002: Clark County’s high school dropout rate has declined for the third year in a row, from 1998 through 2001, to 5.7 percent, down from 11.8 percent in 1997.

March 7, 1935: To help fight dwindling revenues during the Depression, state Sen. Frank Ryan proposes a $10 annual tax, called “the freedom tax,” on all unmarried men between 25 and 50 years old.

March 8, 2002: A team of local prosecutors and police, funded by a $480,000 government grant, have been assembled to focus on “curtailing gun violence in the Las Vegas Valley.”

March 9, 1923: If the proposed federally funded dam in Boulder Canyon comes to fruition, some people predict Vegas could grow from its current population of 3,500 to 30,000 people someday.

March 10, 1916: A rabies epidemic is declared in town after two dogs test positive for the disease.

March 11, 1951: The Mafia has reportedly proclaimed Las Vegas neutral territory — “to the extent that no visiting thugs may shoot down a colleague, even when moved by righteous anger.”

March 12, 1951: William Connors, 52, dies in a flash fire after lighting a cigarette while confined to an oxygen tent at the county hospital.

March 13, 1929: Deputy Sheriff R. G. McCubrey says two men “squealed like rats in a trap” after he cornered and caught them selling 150 cubes of morphine at $4 a cube.

March 14, 1967: 60-year-old Howard Hughes purchases the “swanky” Desert Inn resort, valued at $13 million.

March 15, 1913: The Majestic Theatre is giving out “new Indian-buffalo nickels” when making change to movie patrons this week.

March 16, 2001: Former Brigham Young University football coach LaVell Edwards admits he recommended his former linebacker Duane Johnson, 36, to the Clark County School District for a teaching position — even though he knew Johnson had been accused of “impregnating a student in Provo.” Now, Johnson has been accused by police of “committing a sex offense against a 13-year-old student in Las Vegas.”

March 17, 2001: A state report reveals Nevada mines have produced 8.6 million ounces of gold in 2000, the second largest output in history.

March 18, 1916: A “formerly gentle horse,” now suspected of having rabies, bites off the finger of Paul Stewarn.

March 19, 1991: Despondent over gambling debts, florist Bent Gorosch, 48, shoots and kills his wife Lyndl, 46, “the principal viola player for the Las Vegas Symphony,” then fatally shoots himself in the head.

March 20, 1958: Former Lt. Gov. Clifford Jones, of Las Vegas, owns a large stake in The Habana Hilton, which opens amid rumors of an imminent Cuban civil war.

March 21, 1909: With its 18 percent alcohol content, the tonic Peruna, a nostrum remedium for catarrh of the head, is also advertised in the newspaper as a panacea for the lungs, kidneys, bladder and female organs.

March 22, 2001: About 300 students walk out of Vo-Tech High School in protest after a student suspended for threatening others was allowed to return to school.

March 23, 1957: By popular demand, Rebel Without a Cause and East of Eden, both starring James Dean, play at the Palace Theater.

March 24, 2001: Following a month of eight fatal gang-related shootings, 500 people, forming a “Coalition for Community Peace,” march through West Las Vegas.

March 25, 1917: Upon the conviction of “colored” Beatrice Williams for murdering her husband, the newspaper reports “much amusement was furnished the court and spectators by the witticisms of the colored witnesses.”

March 26, 1933: Bishop Thomas Gorman blesses the Sisters of the Holy Name Convent on South Fifth Street.

March 27, 2001: In the news, Joseph Deluca, 44, is sentenced to 10 years in prison, for his role in the 1997 murder of mob associate Herbert “Fat Herbie” Blitzstein.

March 28, 1917: 12-year-old Edna Wyckoff is electrocuted to death by a power line when climbing a cottonwood tree to watch a baseball game between the Las Vegas and Salt Lake teams.

March 29, 1953: The film Operation A-Bomb, in “thrilling Eastman Color,” plays at the Fremont Theater.

March 30, 1907: An ad in the newspaper for Hood’s Sarsaparilla promises a cure for the spring humors — “impure or effete matters accumulated in the blood during winter.”

March 31, 1951: The Andrews Sisters are appearing at the Flamingo Hotel.

Sources: Las Vegas Age; Las Vegas Morning Tribune; Review-Journal; Sun