Saturday, December 6, 1997
About 50 heads of state are expected to attend the
Organization of the Islamic Conference summit in Tehran.
On the horizon
On Sunday, December 7, the Eleventh International Conference
on AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Diseases in Africa opens.
On Monday. December 8, amnesty hearings resume into the death
in detention of South African black activist Steve Biko.
On Tuesday, December 9, the Steering Board of Bosnia's Peace
Implementation Council meets in Germany.
On Wednesday, December 10, the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize is
presented in Oslo.
On Thursday, December 11, European Union foreign ministers
meet in Geneva.
On this day
In 1421, Henry VI, the last Lancastrian king of England, was
born. He was only eight months old at the time of his
In 1492, Christopher Columbus discovered the island of
Hispaniola, now divided between Haiti and the Dominican
In 1774, Johann von Felbiger's Educational Statute came into
effect in Austria, starting the world's first state education
In 1792, during the French Revolution, the Girondists decided
to put King Louis XVI on trial.
In 1857, Sir Colin Campbell's British troops defeated Sepoy
mutineers at the Battle of Cawnpore in India.
In 1877, Thomas Edison demonstrated the first sound
recording, reciting "Mary had a Little Lamb" at West Orange,
In 1889, Jefferson Davis, American statesman and president of
the Confederate States of America during the U.S. Civil War,
In 1906, Britain granted self-government to the Transvaal and
Orange River colonies in South Africa.
In 1907, one of the worst coal mine disasters in U.S. history
occurred, killing 361 at Mononagh, West Virginia.
In 1914, the Polish town of Lodz fell to German troops.
In 1916, the German army entered Bucharest.
In 1917, the Finnish parliament declared its independence
after being an autonomous Grand Duchy of Russia since 1809.
In 1917, the steamship Mont Blanc, carrying benzol, picric
acid and 5,000 tons of TNT, collided with the steamship Imo
at Halifax, Canada. The resulting explosion killed more than
1,500, injured 8,000 and destroyed a large part of Halifax.
In 1921, the Irish Free State was set up as an independent
member of the British Commonwealth.
In 1964, President Antonio Segni of Italy resigned due to ill
In 1971, India recognized the Democratic Republic of
Bangladesh, formerly East Pakistan; Pakistan responded by
breaking off diplomatic relations.
In 1973, Gerald Ford was sworn in as U.S. vice president,
following the resignation of Spiro Agnew over alleged
In 1978, a referendum in Spain approved a new constitution,
providing for a constitutional monarchy and a parliamentary
form of government.
In 1988, Roy Orbison, one of the greatest stars in American
rock and country music, died; he wrote and sang such hits as
"Only the Lonely," "Pretty Woman" and "Running Scared."
In 1990, President Saddam Hussein ordered all international
hostages held in Iraq and Kuwait to be freed in a major
concession to head off the threat of an international attack on the Arab nation.
In 1992, Hindu extremists destroyed an historic mosque at
Ayodhya, India. The resulting sectarian violence killed over
In 1992, in a referendum, Swiss voters rejected their
government's plan to join a new 19-nation European free trade
On Thursday, UNESCO added several more sites to its World
Heritage List, a designation that makes the sites eligible
for funding for restoration and improved security. Learn more
about the World Heritage.
Holidays and more
It's Independence Day in Finland
Spain celebrates Constitution Day.
Pitcher Steve Bedrosian is 40.
Jazz musician Dave Brubeck is 77.
Actor James Naughton is 52.
U.S. Sen. Don Nickles is 49.
Actress Janine Turner is 35.
Sources: Associated Press,
Chase's Calendar of Events 1997, J.P. Morgan