Tuesday, May 20, 1997
Christie's holds its spring jewelry auction in Geneva.
German Chancellor Helmut Kohl meets President Jacques Chirac
to discuss the European Union summit planned for mid-June.
The White House Mayors Conference on Drug Control is
scheduled to begin a two-day conference in Washington.
On the horizon
On Wednesday, May 21, composer Andrew Lloyd Webber sells his
wine collection of 18,000 bottles at auction in London. Said
by Sotheby's to be "undoubtedly the greatest single wine
collection ever to appear at auction," the sale is expected
to fetch more than $3.3 million.
On Thursday, May 22, the International Coffee Organization
holds a two-day council meeting in London.
On Friday, May 23, presidential elections are to be held in
Iran to elect a successor to President Akbar Hashemi
On Saturday, May 24, Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori is
scheduled to visit Dhaka.
On Sunday, May 25, the first round of French elections are
scheduled to begin.
On this day
In 1303, the Treaty of Paris restored Gascony to the British
in the Hundred Years War.
In 1347, in Rome, Cola di Rienza took the title of Tribune
and assumed dictatorial powers in his drive to revive the
city as the capital of Italy.
In 1498, the explorer Vasco da Gama arrived at Calicut,
India, to complete his voyage around Africa.
In 1501, the Portuguese discovered an island in the south
Atlantic on Ascension Day and named it Ascension Island.
In 1506, Christopher Columbus, Italian navigator and
explorer, died. His four voyages to the New World led to
European exploitation and colonization.
In 1774, Britain passed the Quebec Act, extending its
boundaries northwards to Hudson's Bay land and as far south
as the junction of the Ohio and Mississippi rivers.
In 1867, in London, Queen Victoria laid the foundation stone
of the Royal Albert Hall.
In 1902, Cuba was handed over to a republican government and
the last U.S. troops left.
In 1922, the P&O liner Egypt sank off Ushant after colliding
in fog with the French steamship Seine, with the loss of 90
lives. The ship was also carrying one million sterling worth
of gold and silver.
In 1923, British Prime Minister Bonar Law resigned due to
ill health and was replaced by Stanley Baldwin.
In 1927, the Treaty of Jeddah was signed between Great
Britain and King Ibn Saud, recognizing the independence of
In 1939, Pan American Airways began the first regular
transatlantic airmail service across the North Atlantic.
In 1941, the Mediterranean island of Crete was invaded by
In 1956, the first hydrogen bomb to be dropped from the air
was exploded by the Americans over the Bikini Atoll in the
In 1972, referendum in Cameroon approved change of country
from federation into a unitary state.
In 1980, the Canadian province of Quebec voted against a
proposal to negotiate independence from Canada.
In 1983, in one of the worst terrorist attacks in South
Africa, about 20 people died in a car bomb explosion outside
the Air Force headquarters in Pretoria.
In 1989, martial law was imposed in Peking after student-led
protests drew millions of people onto the streets.
In 1991, the Soviet parliament approved in principle a law
which would allow citizens to travel aboard freely.
In 1993, the British parliament finally passed a bill aimed
at ratifying the Maastricht treaty, after six months of
In 1995, a riot began at the Whitehead detention camp in
Hong Kong by refugees about to be forcibly repatriated to
In 1996, Iraq, whose economy had been devastated by nearly
six years of sanctions, accepted a tough U.N. plan to sell
limited quantities of oil in order to buy food and medicine.
Actor Jimmy Stewart turns 89 today. The actor, best known
for his roles in "It's a Wonderful Life," "Rear Window" and
"Philadelphia Story," is a legend in his own right. So join
in on the celebration and take a visit to the Jimmy Stewart Museum where
you can sit back and take a casual reminiscence through the
life and career of an American icon.
Holidays and more
Today is National Day in Cameroon.
It's Wisakha Bucha Day in Thailand.
Singer Cher is 51.
Singer Joe Cocker is 53.
Actor Bronson Pinchot is 38.
Dancer Ronald P. Reagan is 39.
Actor Jimmy Stewart is 89.
Actor Anthony Zerbe is 61.
Sources: Associated Press,
Chase's Calendar of Events 1997, J.P. Morgan