Dec 1, 1990: Chunnel makes breakthrough
Shortly after 11 a.m. on December 1, 1990, 132 feet below the English Channel, workers drill an opening the size of a car through a wall of rock. This was no ordinary hole--it connected the two ends of an underwater tunnel linking Great Britain with the European mainland for the first time in more than 8,000 years.
The Channel Tunnel, or "Chunnel," was not a new idea. It had been suggested to Napoleon Bonaparte, in fact, as early as 1802. It wasn't until the late 20th century, though, that the necessary technology was developed. In 1986, Britain and France signed a treaty authorizing the construction of a tunnel running between Folkestone, England, and Calais, France.
Over the next four years, nearly 13,000 workers dug 95 miles of tunnels at an average depth of 150 feet (45 meters) below sea level. Eight million cubic meters of soil were removed, at a rate of some 2,400 tons per hour. The completed Chunnel would have three interconnected tubes, including one rail track in each direction and one service tunnel. The price? A whopping $15 billion.
After workers drilled that final hole on December 1, 1990, they exchanged French and British flags and toasted each other with champagne. Final construction took four more years, and the Channel Tunnel finally opened for passenger service on May 6, 1994, with Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and France's President Francois Mitterrand on hand in Calais for the inaugural run. A company called Eurotunnel won the 55-year concession to operate the Chunnel, which is the crucial stretch of the Eurostar high-speed rail link between London and Paris. The regular shuttle train through the tunnel runs 31 miles in total--23 of those underwater--and takes 20 minutes, with an additional 15-minute loop to turn the train around. The Chunnel is the second-longest rail tunnel in the world, after the Seikan Tunnel in Japan.
Dec 1, 1955: Rosa Parks ignites bus boycot
In Montgomery, Alabama, Rosa Parks is jailed for refusing to give up her seat on a public bus to a white man, a violation of the city's racial segregation laws. The successful Montgomery Bus Boycott, organized by a young Baptist minister named Martin Luther King, Jr., followed Park's historic act of civil disobedience.
"The mother of the civil rights movement," as Rosa Parks is known, was born in Tuskegee, Alabama, in 1913. She worked as a seamstress and in 1943 joined the Montgomery chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
According to a Montgomery city ordinance in 1955, African Americans were required to sit at the back of public buses and were also obligated to give up those seats to white riders if the front of the bus filled up. Parks was in the first row of the black section when the white driver demanded that she give up her seat to a white man. Parks' refusal was spontaneous but was not merely brought on by her tired feet, as is the popular legend. In fact, local civil rights leaders had been planning a challenge to Montgomery's racist bus laws for several months, and Parks had been privy to this discussion.
Learning of Parks' arrest, the NAACP and other African American activists immediately called for a bus boycott to be held by black citizens on Monday, December 5. Word was spread by fliers, and activists formed the Montgomery Improvement Association to organize the protest. The first day of the bus boycott was a great success, and that night the 26-year-old Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., told a large crowd gathered at a church, "The great glory of American democracy is the right to protest for right." King emerged as the leader of the bus boycott and received numerous death threats from opponents of integration. At one point, his home was bombed, but he and his family escaped bodily harm.
The boycott stretched on for more than a year, and participants carpooled or walked miles to work and school when no other means were possible. As African Americans previously constituted 70 percent of the Montgomery bus ridership, the municipal transit system suffered gravely during the boycott. On November 13, 1956, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down Alabama state and Montgomery city bus segregation laws as being in violation of the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. On December 20, King issued the following statement: "The year old protest against city buses is officially called off, and the Negro citizens of Montgomery are urged to return to the buses tomorrow morning on a non-segregated basis." The boycott ended the next day. Rosa Parks was among the first to ride the newly desegregated buses.
Martin Luther King, Jr., and his nonviolent civil rights movement had won its first great victory. There would be many more to come.
Rosa Parks died on October 24, 2005. Three days later the U.S. Senate passed a resolution to honor Parks by allowing her body to lie in honor in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda.
Dec 1, 1964: Johnson Administration makes plans to bomb North Vietnam
In two crucial meetings (on this day and two days later) at the White House, President Lyndon B. Johnson and his top-ranking advisers agree, after some debate, to a two-phase bombing plan for North Vietnam.
Phase I would involve air strikes by Air Force and Navy jets against infiltration routes and facilities in the Laotian panhandle. Phase II would extend the air strikes to a larger selection of targets in North Vietnam. The more "hawkish" advisers--particularly the Joint Chiefs of Staff--preferred a more immediate and intensive series of raids against many targets in North Vietnam, while "dovish" advisers questioned whether bombing was going to have any effect on Hanoi's support of the war. Johnson agreed with the Joint Chiefs on the necessity of bombing, but wanted to take a more gradual and measured approach. When he agreed to the bombing plan, President Johnson made it clear that South Vietnamese leaders would be expected to cooperate and pull their government and people together if they hoped to receive additional aid from the United States. Johnson was concerned that the continuing political instability in Saigon would have a detrimental effect on the South Vietnamese government's ability to pursue the fight against the communist Viet Cong.
Dec 1, 1919: New state declared in the Balkans
Three weeks after the armistice, and on the same day that Allied troops cross into Germany for the first time, a new state is proclaimed in Belgrade, Serbia.
As the great Austrian and German empires were brought low in defeat, the new "Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes" sprung to life, bolstered by the League of Nations promised support for Europe s minority populations. Included in the new state were 500,000 Hungarians and an equal number of Germans, as well as tens of thousands of Romanians, Albanians, Bulgarians and Italians.
Crown Prince Alexander, the son of the ailing king of Serbia who had commanded Serbian armies in the Great War, was named regent of the provisional government of the new state. In 1921, with the support of the Serbian representatives in the government and against the opposition of Croatian federalists, who favored a broader distribution of power, a new constitution was put into effect that created a strong central government; Alexander became king after his father died that same year.
Tensions continued to mount with the Serbian-dominated government s denial of autonomy to different ethnic groups, notably the Croats and Slovenes, and in the summer of 1928, in response to the fatal shooting of the Croatian leader Stjepan RadiÆ and two colleagues by a Montenegrin deputy in the national parliament, the Croatians withdrew from parliament and organized a separatist regime based in Zagreb. In January 1929, with the nation on the brink of civil war, Alexander suspended the constitution, dissolved the parliament and all political parties, and took dictatorial control of the country. As part of his effort to impose national unity on the country s warring ethnic groups, he renamed the country Yugoslavia.
Conflict continued to simmer in the Balkans, however, and in 1934, Alexander was assassinated by extreme right-wing Croatian nationalists during a state visit to Marseilles, France. His son, Peter, managed to maintain unity until 1941, when the German army invaded Serbia and Croatia declared its independence.
Dec 1, 1830: Due date for Victor Hugo
According to an agreement with his publisher, French novelist Victor Hugo is due to turn in a draft of his book Notre Dame de Paris (The Hunchback of Notre Dame) on this day in 1830. However, Hugo applies himself to other projects, extends the deadline several times, and the book is not published until 1831.
Hugo, who had decided to be a writer during his early teens, published his first collection of poetry in 1822, for which he won a pension from Louis XVIII. Also in 1822, Hugo married his childhood sweetheart, Adele Foucher, with whom he would have numerous children.
The following year, Hugo published his first novel, Han d'Islande. His 1827 play Cromwell embraced the tenets of Romanticism, which he laid out in the play's preface. The following year, despite his contract to write Notre Dame de Paris, he set to work on two plays. The first, Marion de Lorme (1829), was censored for its candid portrayal of a courtesan. The second, Hernani, became the touchstone for a bitter and protracted debate between French Classicists and Romantics. He finally finished Notre Dame de Paris, which pled for tolerance of the imperfect and the grotesque in 1831. The book also had a simpler agenda: to increase appreciation of old Gothic structures, which had become the object of vandalism and neglect.
In the 1830s, Hugo wrote numerous plays, many of them vehicles for his mistress, the actress Juliette Drouet. In 1841, Hugo was elected to the prestigious Acadamie Francaise. Two years later, he lost his beloved daughter and her husband when they were drowned in an accident. He expressed his profound grief in a poetry collection called Les Contemplations (1856).
When Napoleon III came to power, Hugo was forced to flee France and did not return for 20 years. While still in exile, he completed Les Miserables (1862), which became a hit in France and abroad. He returned to Paris during the Franco-Prussian War and was hailed a national hero. Hugo's writing career spanned more than six decades. He was buried in the Pantheon after his death in 1885.
Here's a more detailed look at events that transpired on this date throughout history:
772 - Pope Adrian I elected
800 - Charlemagne judges the accusations against Pope Leo III in the Vatican.
1167 - Northern Italian towns form Lombardi League
1420 - Henry V of England enters Paris.
1566 - Spanish king Philip II names Fernando Alvarez, duke of Alva
1626 - Pasha Muhammad ibn Farukh tyrannical gov of Jerusalem, driven out
1640 - Portugal regains independence after 60 years of Spanish rule
1641 - Mass becomes 1st colony to give statutory recognition to slavery
1653 - An athlete from Croydon is reported to have run 20 miles from St Albans to London in less than 90 minutes
1656 - Germany promises Poland aid against Sweden
1708 - Great Alliance occupies Brussels
1742 - Empress Elisabeth orders expulsion of all Jews from Russia
1750 - 1st American school to offer manual training courses opens, Md
1768 - The slave ship Fredensborg sinks off Tromøy in Norway.
1783 - Jacques Charles & Nicolas Roberts make first untethered ascension with gas hydrogen balloon in Paris
1821 - Santo Domingo (Dominican Rep) proclaims independence from Spain
1822 - Dom Pedro crowned emperor of Brazil
1822 - Franz Liszts (11) debut as pianist Isabella Colbran
1824 - House of Reps begins to end election deadlock between JQ Adams
Composer/Pianist Franz LisztComposer/Pianist Franz Liszt 1824 - Jackson, WH Crawford & H Clay Adams eventually declared president
1831 - Erie Canal closes for entire month due to cold weather
1835 - Hans Christian Andersen published his 1st book of fairy tales
1843 - 1st chartered mutual life insurance company opens
1852 - Telegraph company opens throughout Netherlands
1864 - Raid at Stoneman: Knoxville, TN to Saltville, VA
1864 - Skirmish at Millen Brutal, Georgia
1868 - John D Rockefeller begins anti oil war
1878 - 1st White House telephone installed
1884 - American Old West: Near Frisco, New Mexico, deputy sheriff Elfego Baca holds off a gang of 80 Texan cowboys who want to kill him for arresting Charles McCarthy.
1887 - Sherlock Holmes 1st appears in print: "Study in Scarlet"
1887 - Sino-Portuguese treaty recognizes Portugal's control of Macao
1891 - James Naismith creates the game of basketball
1896 - 1st certified public accountants receive certificates (NY)
1900 - South African president Paul Kruger visits Flanders
Inventor James NaismithInventor James Naismith 1903 - "The Great Train Robbery", the 1st Western film, released
1906 - Cinema Omnia Pathe, world's 1st cinema, opens (Paris)
1906 - Shoemaker Wilhelm Voigt (Capt of Köpenick) sentenced to 4 yrs
1909 - 1st Christmas Club payment made, to Carlisle Trust Co, Pa
1909 - 1st Israeli kibbutz founded, Deganya Alef
1913 - 1st drive-up gasoline station opens (Pitts)
1913 - Continuous moving assembly line introduced by Ford (car every 2:38)
1917 - Boys Town founded by Father Edward Flanagan west of Omaha Neb
1918 - Danish parliament passed an act to grant Iceland independence
1918 - Iceland becomes independent state under Danish crown
1918 - Serbian-Croatian-Slovic kingdom proclaimed in Belgrade
1918 - Yugoslavia declares independence; monarchy established
1919 - AA Milne's "Mr Pim Passes By" premieres in Manchester
1919 - Lady Nancy Astor sworn-in as 1st female member of British Parliament
1921 - 1st US helium-filled dirigible makes 1st flight
1921 - US Post Office establishes philatelic agency
1922 - 1st skywriting over US-"Hello USA"-by Capt Turner, RAF
1922 - Polish state chief marshal Jozef Pilsudski resigns
1923 - CFL Grey Cup: Queen's U beats Regina 54-0 at Toronto
1924 - Calles becomes president of Mexico
1924 - George/Ira Gershwin's musical "Lady Be Good" premieres in NYC
1925 - Treaty of Locarno signed
1928 - CFL Grey Cup: Ham Tigers beats Regina 30-0 at Hamilton
1928 - Railroad museum opens in Utrecht Neth
1929 - Game of Bingo invented by Edwin S Lowe
1930 - NHL drops 20 minute slashing-about-the-head penalty
1930 - Ruth Nichols becomes 1st woman pilot to cross continent
1931 - Ottawa branch of Royal Mint begins operation as Royal Canadian Mint
Dictator of Nazi Germany Adolf HitlerDictator of Nazi Germany Adolf Hitler 1933 - Rudolf Hess & Earnest Rohm become a minister in Hitler government
1934 - Leningrad mayor Sergey Kirov assassinated, used by Stalin as the excuse to begin the Great Purge of 1934-38.
1935 - Austria has world's 1st Day of Postage Stamp
1936 - 2nd Heisman Trophy Award: Larry Kelley, Yale (E)
1936 - Bell Labs tests coaxial cable for TV use
1936 - EW Brundin & FF Lyon obtain patent on soilless culture of plants
1937 - Japan recognizes Franco government
1938 - School bus & train collide in Salt Lake City Utah
1939 - SS-Fuhrer Himmler begins deportation of Polish Jews
1941 - British cruiser Devonshire sinks German sub Python
1941 - Japanese emperor Hirohito signs declaration of war
1941 - Last day of first-class cricket in Australia for 4 years
1941 - US Civil Air Patrol (CAP) organizes
1942 - Gasoline rationed in US
1942 - The Beveridge Report is published by the British government unveiling plans for a post-war welfare state
Spanish Dictator Francisco FrancoSpanish Dictator Francisco Franco 1943 - FDR, Churchill & Stalin agree to Operation Overlord (D-Day)
1944 - Béla Bartòk's Concerto for orchestra, premieres
1944 - Mail routing resumes in free South Netherlands
1944 - Prokofjev's 8th Piano sonata, premieres
1945 - CFL Grey Cup: Toronto beats Winnipeg 35-0 at Toronto
1946 - Australia compile 645 v India at the Gabba (Bradman 187)
1947 - Bradman scores 185 in the 1st Cricket Test v India at the Gabba
1947 - India cricket all out for 58 v Australia at the Gabba, Toshack 5-2
1948 - Arabic Congress names Abdullah of Trans Jordan as King of Palestine
1948 - Piet Roozenburg becomes world champion checker player
1949 - WBNG TV channel 12 in Binghamton, NY (CBS) begins broadcasting
1949 - WKTV TV channel 2 in Utica, NY (NBC) begins broadcasting
1951 - 17th Heisman Trophy Award: Dick Kazmaier, Princeton (HB)
1951 - Benjamin Britten's opera "Billy Budd" premieres in London
1951 - Golden Gate Bridge closes due to high winds
1952 - The New York Daily News reports the first successful sexual reassignment operation.
1953 - Red Sox trade M McDermott & Tom Umphlett for Wash's Jackie Jensen
1953 - WAIM (now WAXA) TV channel 40 in Anderson, SC (IND) 1st broadcast
1953 - WCSH TV channel 6 in Portland, ME (NBC) begins broadcasting
1953 - Walter Alston named Dodger manager
1954 - Nationalist China & US sign dike agreement
1954 - Yanks send Miller, Segrist, Leppert & 2 minors to Orioles for Blayzka, Kryhoski, Johnson, Fridley & Del Guercio (completing 18 player deal)
Civil Rights Activist Rosa Lee ParksCivil Rights Activist Rosa Lee Parks 1955 - Rosa Parks (black) arrested for refusing to move to the back of bus
1956 - "Candide" opens at Martin Beck Theater NYC for 73 performances
1956 - Alain Mimoun wins 13th Olympics marathon (2:25:00.0)
1956 - Frank Robinson (NL) & Luis Aparicio (AL) voted Rookie of the Year
1956 - Indonesian VP Mohammed Hatta resigns
1957 - Sam Cooke and Buddy Holly and Crickets debut on Ed Sullivan Show
1958 - "Flower Drum Song" opens at St James Theater NYC for 602 performances
1958 - Central African Rep made autonomous member of Fr Comm (Natl Day)
1958 - Our Lady of Angels School burns, killing 92 students & 3 nuns (Chic)
1959 - 12 nations sign treaty for scientific peaceful use of Antarctica
1959 - 1st color photograph of Earth from outer space
1959 - 25th Heisman Trophy Award: Billy Cannon, LSU (HB)
1959 - The 1st color photograph of Earth received from outer space
1960 - Patrice Lumumba caught in the Congo
1960 - Paul McCartney and Pete Best arrested then deported from Hamburg, Germany for accusation of attempted arson.
1961 - The independent Republic of West Papua is proclaimed in modern-day Western New Guinea.
1962 - Grey Cup halted by fog, resumed next day (Winnipeg 28, Hamilton 27)
1962 - KGMB TV channel 9 in Honolulu, HI (CBS) begins broadcasting
1963 - NY Jets 1st shutout, beat KC 17-0
1963 - Nagaland becomes a state of Indian union
1964 - Houston Colt .45s change name to Astros
1964 - ML King speaks to J. Edgar Hoover about his slander campaign
1965 - Airlift of refugees from Cuba to US began
1965 - South Africa government says children of white fathers are white
1966 - Georg Kiesinger elected West German chancellor
1966 - Radio time signal WWV moves from Greenbelt, Md to Boulder, Colo
1967 - Pacific Northwest Sports awarded AL expansion franchise (Seattle)
1967 - Queen Elizabeth inaugurates 98-inch (249-cm) Isaac Newton telescope
1967 - Seattle awarded one of the 2 AL expansion franchise teams
1967 - Wilt Chamberlain set NBA record of 22 free throws misses
1968 - "Promises Promises" opens at Shubert Theater NYC for 1281 performances
1968 - Burt Bacharach/Hal David's musical premieres in NYC
1968 - Gonzalo Barrios, Venezuelan presidential candidate
1968 - Peggy Wilson wins LPGA Hollywood Lakes Golf Open
1968 - Pirate Radio Modern (259) (England) begins transmitting
1969 - US government holds its 1st draft lottery since WW II
1970 - Luis Echeverria Alvarez sworn in as president of Mexico
1970 - NHL takes control of Pittsburgh Penguins
1970 - Independent People's Republic of South Yemen becomes People Democratic Republic of Yemen
1971 - Cubs release Ernie Banks & sign him as a coach
1971 - Galt MacDermot/John Guare's "2 gentlemen of Verona" opens at St James Theater NYC for 613 perfs
1971 - John & Yoko release "Happy Xmas (War is Over)" in US
1971 - People's Republic of South Yemen renames itself People's Democratic Republic of Yemen
1971 - Cambodian Civil War: Khmer Rouge rebels intensify assaults on Cambodian government positions, forcing their retreat from Kompong Thmar and nearby Ba Ray.
1972 - Wings release "Hi, Hi, Hi" in UK
1973 - Australia grants self-government to Papua New Guinea
1973 - Jack Nicklaus becomes 1st golfer to earn $2M in a year
1973 - Jan Ferraris wins LPGA-Japan Golf Classic
1973 - Stan Stasiak beats Pedro Morales in Philadelphia, to become WWF champ
1974 - Boeing 727 crashes in Upperville Virginia, 92 died
1974 - Jacqueline Hansen runs female world record marathon (2:43:54.5)
1974 - LA Skid Row slasher kills 1st of 8
1975 - US president Gerald Ford visits China PR
1976 - Angola admitted to UN
1976 - Bangladesh General Ziaur Rahman declares himself president
1976 - Sex Pistols using profanity on TV, gets them branded as "rotten punks"
1978 - Pres Carter more than doubles national park system size
1978 - Test Cricket debut of Rodney Hogg, v England at the Gabba
1978 - US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
1980 - 46th Heisman Trophy Award: George Rogers, South Carolina (RB)
38th US President Gerald Ford38th US President Gerald Ford 1980 - Mel Harris appears on M*A*S*H in "Cementing Relationships"
1980 - US Justice Dept sues Yonkers siting racial discrimination
1981 - 180 dies as Yugoslav DC-9 jetliner slams into a mountain
1981 - Yugoslavic DC-9 crashes into mountain at Corsica, 174 killed
1981 - The AIDS virus is officially recognized.
1982 - Dentist Barney B Clark gets 1st artificial heart
1982 - Michael Jackson releases his album "Thriller"
1982 - Miguel de la Madrid inaugurated as pres of Mexico
1983 - Rita Lavelle, former head of EPA, convicted of perjury
1984 - 50th Heisman Trophy Award: Doug Flutie, Boston College (QB)
1984 - France performs nuclear test
1984 - Greg Page KOs Gerrie Coetzee in 8 for WBA heavyweight boxing title
1985 - Noraly Beyer becomes Neth's 1st black TV newscaster
1985 - STS 61-C vehicle moves to launch pad
1985 - South Africa's Cosatu union centre forms
1986 - Musée d'Orsay opens in Paris
1986 - Paul McCartney releases "Only Love Remains"
1987 - Digging begins to link England & France under English Channel
1988 - 596 dead after cyclone hits Bangladesh, half a million homeless
1988 - Benazir Bhutto named 1st female Prime Minister of a Moslem country (Pakistan)
1988 - Chinese minister of Foreign affairs Qian Qichen visits Moscow
1988 - NBC bids record $401M to capture rights to 1992 Barcelona Olympics
1988 - NY Islanders greatest shutout lose (8-0) vs St Louis Blues
1989 - "Day Without Art"-Artists demonstrate against AIDS
1989 - East Germany drops communist monopoly from its constitution
1989 - Mark Langston signs record $3.2 million per year Cal Angels contract
1989 - USSR Pres Mikhail S Gorbachev meets Pope John Paul II at the Vatican
1990 - 56th Heisman Trophy Award: Ty Detmer, Brigham Young (QB)
1990 - British & French workers meet in English Channel's tunnel (Chunnel)
1990 - Hissène Habré of Chad flees to Cameroon
264th Pope John Paul II264th Pope John Paul II 1990 - Iraq accepts Bush's offer for talks
1990 - Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia hold their 1st joint session
1990 - NY Knicks Patrick Ewing scores 50 points beating Charlotte 113-96
1991 - "Moscow Circus Cirk Valentin" closes at Gershwin NYC after 32 perfs
1991 - "Once on this Island" closes at Booth Theater NYC after 469 perfs
1991 - 80th Davis Cup: France beats USA in Lyon (3-1)
1991 - AIDS awareness day
1991 - Colorado party wins Paraguay parliamentary election
1991 - Nursultan Nazarbayev sworn in as president of Kazakhstan
1991 - US 75th manned space mission "STS 44" Atlantis 10 lands
1991 - Ukrainian people vote for independence
1992 - 2 C-141B Starlifters collide in Montana & crash, 13 die
1992 - Amy Fisher sentenced 5-15 yrs for shooting Mary Jo Buttafuoco
1993 - Northwest Airlink plane crashes in Minn, killing 18
1994 - 3 Seattle Seahawks injured in a car accident
1994 - Cindy Crawford & Richard Gere announce they are seperating
1994 - Ernesto Zedillo innaugrated as president of Mexico
1994 - PTL leader Jim Bakker released from jail
1994 - Rober Schumanns 2nd Symphony premieres in London
1996 - 85th Davis Cup: France beats Sweden in Malmo (3-2)
1996 - Lance Klusener takes 8-64 in debut Test Cricket to trounce India
1997 - GS Warrior guard Latrell Sprewell, attacks his coach P J Carlesimo
1997 - Howard Stern Radio Show premieres in Davenport IA on KORB 93.5 FM
1997 - Westinghouse formally changes its name to CBS
1998 - Exxon announces a $73.7 billion USD deal to buy Mobil, thus creating Exxon-Mobil, the world's largest company.
2001 - Captain Bill Compton brings Trans World Airlines Flight 220, an MD-83, into St. Louis International Airport bringing to an end 76 years of TWA operations following TWA's purchase by American Airlines.
2012 - 8 people are killed and 36 injured after a bus overturns in Bolivia
2012 - Enrique Peña Nieto sworn in as President of Mexico
2012 - Ukranian Anna Ushenina wins the Women's World Chess Championship 2012
1835 - Hans Christian Andersen published his first book of fairy tales. 1909 - The Pennsylvania Trust Company, of Carlisle, PA, became the first bank in the in the U.S. to offer a Christmas Club account. 1913 - Ford Motor Co. began using a new movable assembly line that ushered in the era of mass production. 1913 - The first drive-in automobile service station opened, in Pittsburgh, PA. 1919 - Lady Astor was sworn in as the first female member of the British Parliament. 1925 - The Locarno Pact finalized the treaties between World War I protagonists. 1934 - Sergei M. Kirov, a collaborator of Joseph Stalin, was assassinated at the Leningrad party headquarters. 1941 - In the U.S., the Civil Air Patrol was created. In April 1943 the Civil Air Patrol was placed under the jurisdiction of the Army Air Forces. 1942 - In the U.S., nationwide gasoline rationing went into effect. 1943 - In Teheran, leaders of the United States, the USSR and the United Kingdom met to reaffirm the goal set on October 30, 1943. The previous meeting called for an early establishment of an international organization to maintain peace and security. 1952 - In Denmark, it was announced that the first successful sex-change operation had been performed. 1955 - Rosa Parks, a black seamstress in Montgomery, AL, refused to give up her seat to a white man. Mrs. Parks was arrested marking a milestone in the civil rights movement in the U.S. 1959 - 12 countries, including the U.S. and USSR, signed a treaty that set aside Antarctica as a scientific preserve, which would be free from military activity. 1965 - An airlift of refugees from Cuba to the United States began. 1969 - The U.S. government held its first draft lottery since World War II. 1984 - A remote-controlled Boeing 720 jetliner was deliberately crashed into California's Mojave Desert to test an anti-flame fuel additive. The test proved to be disappointing. 1986 - U.S. President Ronald Reagansaid he would welcome an investigation of the Iran-Contra affair if it were recommended by the Justice Department. 1987 - NASA announced four companies had been given contracts to help build a space station. The companies were Boeing Aerospace, G. E.'s Astro-Space Division, McDonnell Douglas Aeronautics, and Rocketdyne Division of Rockwell International. 1989 - Dissidents in the Philippine military launched an unsuccessful coup against Corazon Aquino's government. 1989 - East Germany's Parliament abolished the Communist Party's constitutional guarantee of supremacy. 1990 - Iraq accepted a U.S. offer to talk about resolving the Persian Gulf crisis. 1990 - British and French workers digging the Channel Tunnel finally met under the English Channel. 1991 - Ukrainians voted overwhelmingly for independence from the Soviet Union. 1992 - Russian President Boris Yeltsin survived an impeachment attempt by hard-liners at the opening of the Russian Congress. 1994 - The U.S. Senate gave final congressional approval to the 124-nation General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade. 1998 - Exxon announced that it was buying Mobil for $73.7 billion creating the largest company in the world to date.
The following links are to web sites that were used to complete this blog entry: