March 5, 1963 Noted country music vocalist and Virginia native, Patsy Cline, dies in an airplane crash in Tennessee. She is buried at Shenandoah Memorial Park in Winchester.
March 7, 1956 In an attempt to circumvent the U.S. Supreme Court's desegregation ruling, a constitutional convention in Virginia amends the state's laws to permit the payment of public funds for tuition to parents who send their children to private, segregated schools.
March 9, 1862 The first battle of ironclad ships takes place in the waterways of Hampton Roads when the USS Monitor and the CSS Virginia (Merrimac) engage in a five-hour fight that ends in a draw.
March 12, 1612 England's King James I issues the third charter of the Virginia Company of London. This charter remained in force until May 1624, when the company was dissolved and Virginia became a royal colony.
March 12, 1956 In response to the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision, 101 southern members of Congress draft the Declaration of Constitutional Principles, popularly known as the "Southern Manifesto," pledging to "use all lawful means to bring about a reversal of this decision which is contrary to the Constitution and to prevent the use of force in its implementation."
March 16, 1751 James Madison is born near Port Conway in King George County. Madison served as the fourth president of the United States and was the primary author of the U.S. Constitution.
March 16, 1861 Texas governor Sam Houston is removed from office for refusing to take the Confederate oath of allegiance. Robert E. Lee, a U.S. Army officer stationed in Texas, is ordered out of the state after its secession. Houston and Lee are both native Virginians.
March 21, 1617 Pocahontas dies while visiting England. She became ill as her ship left London for Virginia, and she died of an unknown illness. She is buried at St. George's Church in Gravesend.
March 22, 1622 Powhatan Native Americans stage an uprising on Good Friday in which more than 300 English settlers are killed.
March 23, 1775 Patrick Henry delivers his famous speech "Give me liberty or give me death" at Henrico Parish, now named St. John's Church, in Richmond.
March 23-24, 1849 Henry "Box" Brown, a Virginia slave, escapes from Richmond to Philadelphia by mailing himself in a shipping crate. In a trip that lasted twenty-six hours, Brown was transported by train, boat, and wagon.
March 29, 1901 Fire levels much of the Jefferson Hotel in Richmond. It is not fully refurbished until 1907.
March 30, 1791 President George Washington issues a proclamation to establish a permanent seat for the U.S. government on the Potomac River, on land ceded by both Virginia and Maryland. The nation's new capital site is called the District of Columbia.