The End of U.S. Involvement in Vietnam’s War and Other Notes About March 29th in American History to Kick Off Spring

The End of U.S. Involvement in Vietnam’s War and Other Notes About March 29th in American History to Kick Off Spring

Mar 29, 2024

U.S. troops leaving Vietnam is a solid reason to choose March 29th for a post.

Clearly the Vietnam War is a big topic. And there is so much out there that should be watched, read, discussed, and listened to. But when I realized March 29th was the day that our United States pulled out of the war in 1973, I decided to drop a "this day in history" post- one of my favorites to randomly learn bits of history, tied together by no more than a common date.

I haven't done this much lately- my last one was a month ago, to hit on Leap Year, in a post you can read by clicking here. So let's kick off spring with some interesting facts that kicked it off in our American history. (Yes, war is not pretty so my photos are of spring flowers... because it's my journal blog and I want to be uplifted - at least by the photos!)

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Daffodils along the fenceline where the Leicester Longwool lamb is staying next to the Prentis store in Colonial Williamsburg

Historical summary of March 29th.

  • 1638- The first permanent European settlement along the Delaware, by a group of Swedish Lutherans. If you really want to dive into this history, I'm recommending you check out this amazing material written in the early 20th century. I get into these kinds of sources and have the full document bookmarked to read in bits... because IYKYK how I am about long non-fiction pieces!
  • 1847- U.S. troops complete their capture of Vera Cruz Mexico. This was a critical moment in time for the Americans during the Mexican-American War. Read more about the capture here.
  • 1848- America's first multi-millionaire, John Astor passed away. Also passing on March 29th: 1992, Paul Henreid, actor who played a vital role in one of my all-time favorites: Casablanca and in 2005, Johnnie Cochran, O.J. Simpson's defense attorney successfully getting him cleared criminally for the deaths of O.J.'s wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman. I remember visiting the townhouse scene in Brentwood - before social media and the Internet took hold, so it was a big deal. And also watching the "chase" live on T.V. as O.J. fled in that white bronco. Anyone else?
  • 1867- Cy Young, Hall of Fame pitcher was born in Gilmore, Ohio; my nod to spring kicking off with adding a factoid that's baseball-related! Sharing his birthday are American politician, the Democratic Senator from Minnesota who ran for President, Eugene McCarthy in 1916 followed in 1918 by Sam Walton- CEO and founder of Walmart and Sam's Club, and Kurt Thomas in 1956- he was the first American male gymnast to win a gold medal at World Championships.
  • 1945- The 3rd Army of General George S. Patton took Frankfurt. A pivotal moment in American history for sure!
  • 1951- The Rosenburgs were convicted. Julius and Ethel were tried for espionage at the height of fearing a "cold war " with the former U.S.S.R.. Their conviction was historic, and you can read more here. Their sons have been working to exonerate them and the story overall is fascinating.
  • 1974- The Great Gatsby, starring Robert Redford, was released as a film adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald's classic novel. Side note: this was also the release date for Marilyn Monroe's and Tony Curtis' "Some Like it Hot" in 1959. You can get the audiobook of it's history by clicking here if you love anything Hollywood-related!
  • 1982- Michael Jordan was a freshman at the University of North Carolina (UNC). He got the winning shot for UNC to win the national championship in the NCAA tournament. (A little March Madness tidbit for y'all--and isn't March Madness a big old nod to kicking off spring?!)
  • 2019- On the same day now-President Biden was accused of "an inappropriate kiss" by fellow Democrat Lucy Flores, something more important to me was happening: these LEGACIES of GenX's youth were inducted into the 34th Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: The Cure; Def Leppard; Janet Jackson; Stevie Nicks; Radiohead; Roxy Music; and The Zombies.

Spring tulips in Colonial Williamsburg garden

Closing it out.

You can use the links above to get more information on any of the events I listed. And please share any of your March 29th events in the comments.

As always, words from history. This time relevant to the War of 1812 and St. George Tucker's letter to President Madison sharing information on a potential invasion of New York. You can read the full letter and citations by clicking here.

To James Madison from St. George Tucker, 29 March 1813

From St. George Tucker

Wmsburg March 29. 1813.

Dear Sir,

I fear you will think me a troublesome Correspondent, but the Information contained in the enclosed, which I have just taken from the Lips of five deserters from the British Ship Dragon, I apprehend ought to be conveyed to you as early as possible.1 It seems to indicate an attack upon Newyork:2 at least, the taking the Congreve Rockets, out of the Ships on this Station, and sending them to the Northward, has a suspicious appearance; As to the taking of the Acasta frigate by the Cheasapeake, I do not venture to credit it, upon such Information, especially, as by comparing dates, the news of her Capture must have reach’d our Bay, within six days after she sailed from thence for Bermuda.3 I am very respectfully, Dear Sir, Your most obedt. Servt.

S:G: Tucker

  • For more on St. George Tucker of Williamsburg, read my holiday post here.
  • For more on the War of 1812, this recommendation from Bryan Austin (which I haven't gotten to yet...) who portrayed Madison here in Colonial Williamsburg for many years and is the creator of one of my favorite podcasts.

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There is a huge practical disclaimer to the content on this blog, which is my way of sharing my excitement and basically journaling online.

1) I am not a historian nor an expert. I will let you know I’m relaying the information as I understand and interpret it. The employees of Colonial Williamsburg base their presentations, work, and responses on historical documents and mainly primary sources.

2) I will update for accuracy as history is constant learning. If you have a question about accuracy, please ask me! I will get the answer from the best source I can find.

3) Photo credit to me, Daphne Reznik, for all photos in this post, unless otherwise credited! All photos are personal photos taken in public access locations or with specific permission.