This Day in History: March 17

South Africa

1992 – Vote to end apartheid. On this day in 1992, nearly 69 percent of white South African voters backed F.W. de Klerk‘s reforms—which included the repeal of racially discriminatory laws—and effectively endorsed the dismantling of apartheid.

St. Patrick's Day

461 – St. Patrick, patron saint of Ireland, died this day in 461, according to legend, and now his feast day is celebrated widely in Ireland and the United States.

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2000 – A fire broke out at the headquarters of the doomsday cult Movement for the Restoration of the Ten Commandments of God in Kanungu, Uganda, and it eventually led to the discovery of more than 775 bodies, many of which had been poisoned; the cult’s leaders were believed to have killed their followers after a promised apocalypse did not occur.

Golda Meir

1969 – Golda Meir became the fourth prime minister of Israel.

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