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Today in History: March 31, Ferdinand and Isabella expel Jews from Spain

Members of the restored Synagogue of Barcelona carry the holy Torah to their new home in Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, Jan. 22, 2006. Spain's Catalonia suffered region some of the most virulent anti-Semitism of the Middle Ages, and most Jews were driven out nearly a century before all Jews were expelled from the rest of the country in 1492. Barcelona oldest synagogue, dating from the 9th century, has been restored, and recently received a gift of a medieval torah, the scrolled parchment bearing the first five books of the Old Testament in Hebrew. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

Members of the restored Synagogue of Barcelona carry the holy Torah to their new home in Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, Jan. 22, 2006. Spain’s Catalonia suffered region some of the most virulent anti-Semitism of the Middle Ages, and most Jews were driven out nearly a century before all Jews were expelled from the rest of the country in 1492. Barcelona oldest synagogue, dating from the 9th century, has been restored, and recently received a gift of a medieval torah, the scrolled parchment bearing the first five books of the Old Testament in Hebrew. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

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Today in History:

On March 31, 1492, King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain issued an edict expelling Jews from Spanish soil, except those willing to convert to Christianity.

On this date:

In 1814, Paris was occupied by a coalition of Russian, Prussian and Austrian forces; the surrender of the French capital forced the abdication of Emperor Napoleon.

In 1917, the United States took formal possession of the Virgin Islands from Denmark.

In 1931, Notre Dame college football coach Knute Rockne (noot RAHK’-nee), 43, was killed in the crash of a TWA plane in Bazaar, Kansas.

In 1968, at the conclusion of a nationally broadcast address on Vietnam, President Lyndon B. Johnson stunned listeners by declaring, “I shall not seek, and I will not accept, the nomination of my party for another term as your President.”

In 1991, the Warsaw Pact military alliance came to an end.

In 1993, actor Brandon Lee, 28, was accidentally shot to death during the filming of a movie in Wilmington, North Carolina, when he was hit by a bullet fragment that had become lodged inside a prop gun.

In 1995, baseball players agreed to end their 232-day strike after a judge granted a preliminary injunction against club owners.

In 2004, four American civilian contractors were killed in Fallujah, Iraq; frenzied crowds dragged the burned, mutilated bodies and strung two of them from a bridge.

In 2005, Terri Schiavo (SHY’-voh), 41, died at a hospice in Pinellas Park, Florida, 13 days after her feeding tube was removed in a wrenching right-to-die court fight.

In 2009, Benjamin Netanyahu took office as Israel’s new prime minister after the Knesset approved his government.

In 2018, amid tight security, Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai and her family returned to her hometown in Pakistan for the first time since she was shot in the head in 2012 for her work as an advocate for young women’s education.

In 2019, rapper Nipsey Hussle was fatally shot outside the clothing store he had founded to help rebuild his troubled South Los Angeles neighborhood; he was 33.

In 2020, Britain’s Prince Harry and his wife Meghan officially stepped down from duties as members of the royal family.

In 2021, the Pentagon swept away Trump-era policies that largely banned transgender people from serving in the military.

In 2022, scientists announced they had finally finished deciphering the full genetic blueprint for human life.