Today in history
Today is Thursday, Dec. 6, the 340th day of 2018. There are 25 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlights in History:
On Dec. 6, 1907, the worst mining disaster in U.S. history occurred as 362 men and boys died in a coal mine explosion in Monongah, West Virginia. On this date: In 1790, Congress moved to Philadelphia from New York.
In 1865, the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, abolishing slavery, was ratified as Georgia became the 27th state to endorse it.
In 1884, Army engineers completed construction of the Washington Monument by setting an aluminum capstone atop the obelisk.
In 1917, some 2,000 people were killed when an explosives-laden French cargo ship, the Mont Blanc, collided with the Norwegian vessel Imo at the harbor in Halifax, Nova Scotia, setting off a blast that devastated the Canadian city. Finland declared its independence from Russia.
In 1923, a presidential address was broadcast on radio for the first time as President Coolidge spoke to a joint session of Congress.
In 1947, Everglades National Park in Florida was dedicated by President Harry S. Truman.
In 1957, America’s first attempt at putting a satellite into orbit failed as Vanguard TV3 rose about four feet off a Cape Canaveral launch pad before crashing down and exploding.
In 1973, House minority leader Gerald R. Ford was sworn in as vice president, succeeding Spiro T. Agnew.
In 1982, 11 soldiers and six civilians were killed when an Irish National Liberation Army bomb exploded at a pub in Ballykelly, Northern Ireland.
In 1989, 14 women were shot to death at the University of Montreal’s school of engineering by a man who then took his own life.
In 1998, in Venezuela, former Lt. Col. Hugo Chavez (OO’-goh CHAH’vez), who had staged a bloody coup attempt against the government six years earlier, was elected president.
In 2001, The House of Representatives, by a onevote margin, gave President George W. Bush more power to negotiate global trade deals. President Bush dedicated the national Christmas tree to those who had died on Sept. 11 and to service members who had died in the line of duty.
Ten years ago: President-elect Barack Obama said in a Saturday radio and Internet address that he’d asked his economic team for a recovery plan that would save or create more than 2 million jobs. Indicted Democratic U.S. Rep. William Jefferson was ousted from his New Orleans area district in a special election won by Republican attorney Anh “Joseph” Cao, who became the first Vietnamese-American in Congress. Heiress Martha “Sunny” von Bulow, who’d spent the last 28 years of her life in a coma, died in New York City at age 76.
Five years ago: A day after Nelson Mandela’s death at 95, South Africans of all colors erupted in song, dance and tears in emotional celebrations of the life of the man who had bridged the country’s black-white divide and helped avert a race war. The Fender Stratocaster that Bob Dylan played at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival was sold at Christie’s for nearly $1 million — the highest price ever paid for a guitar at auction.