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5 Fun Facts About March 11 In Michigan History

---Learn Every Day: MI Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history mi To: 618-270-4005---

1. On March 11, 1841, Michigan Governor William Woodbridge signed a bill creating the state's first penitentiary in Jackson. The prison, which opened in 1838, was intended to be a model institution that emphasized discipline, hard labor, and religious instruction as methods of rehabilitation.

2. In 1867, the Michigan Supreme Court declared the state's civil rights law unconstitutional on March 11. The law had been passed by the Republican-controlled legislature in response to the Black Codes enacted by southern states after the Civil War.

3. On March 11, 1918, the Michigan Legislature approved the Nineteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which granted women the right to vote. Michigan was one of the first states to ratify the amendment, which was officially adopted in August of that year.

4. The Edmund Fitzgerald, a Great Lakes freighter, sunk on November 10, 1975, but much of the debris and wreckage washed ashore on March 11, 1976, near Whitefish Point in Lake Superior. The sinking of the Fitzgerald remains one of the most famous maritime disasters in Michigan history.

5. On March 11, 1999, Michigan State University's men's basketball team lost to the University of Illinois in the quarterfinals of the Big Ten Conference tournament, ending their season with a record of 33-5. The team, led by coach Tom Izzo and star player Mateen Cleaves, would go on to win the NCAA championship two weeks later.
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