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Saturday, December 6, 1997

  • Today's Events
  • On Horizon
  • On This Day
  • Newslink
  • Holidays & more
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  • "The competition in news magazines has created a monster, and it's a monster with no head."

    -- Russ Ptacek, president of Video Information News

    Today's events

  • About 50 heads of state are expected to attend the Organization of the Islamic Conference summit in Tehran.

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    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.

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    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 succession.

  • In 1492, Christopher Columbus discovered the island of Hispaniola, now divided between Haiti and the Dominican Republic.

  • In 1774, Johann von Felbiger's Educational Statute came into effect in Austria, starting the world's first state education system.

  • 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, New Jersey.

  • In 1889, Jefferson Davis, American statesman and president of the Confederate States of America during the U.S. Civil War, died.

  • 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 health.

  • 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 financial irregularities.

  • 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 400.

  • In 1992, in a referendum, Swiss voters rejected their government's plan to join a new 19-nation European free trade zone.

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    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.

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    Sources: Associated Press,
    Chase's Calendar of Events 1997, J.P. Morgan

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