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On this day: March 11

POSTED: 09:10 AM PST Mar 05, 2013    UPDATED: 11:00 PM PDT Mar 10, 2014 

Spanish Influenza breaks out, Janet Reno is confirmed as the first female attorney general, and a massive earthquake and tsunami cripple Japan, all on this day.

OTD March 11 - Douglas Adams
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michael hughes/Wikimedia Commons

1952: Author Douglas Adams, best known as the author of "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy," which began in 1978 as a BBC radio comedy before developing into a series of five books that sold more than 15 million copies in his lifetime, is born in Cambridge, England. Adams, who also wrote the novels "Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency" and "The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul," died of a heart attack at the age of 49 on May 11, 2001.

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