Today’s Highlight 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 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 1962, 37 coal miners were killed in an explosion at the Robena No. 3 Mine operated by U.S. Steel in Carmichaels, Pa.
In 1969, a free concert by The Rolling Stones at the Altamont Speedway in Alameda County, California, was marred by the deaths of four people, including one who was stabbed by a Hell’s Angel.
In 1973, House minority leader Gerald R. Ford was sworn in as vice president, succeeding Spiro T. Agnew.
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 one-vote 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 Barack Obama announced a compromise with the GOP to extend Bush-era income tax cuts despite Democratic objections; the agreement included renewing unemployment benefits and reducing Social Security taxes for one year. Talks between Iran and six world powers recessed with no sign Tehran was ready to discuss U.N. Security Council calls to curb its nuclear activity. Pat Gillick, whose teams won three World Series titles in 27 years as a major league general manager, was elected to baseball’s Hall of Fame by the Veterans Committee.
Five years ago: In an Oval Office address, President Barack Obama vowed the U.S. would overcome a new phase of the terror threat that sought to “poison the minds” of people around the world, as he tried to reassure Americans shaken by recent attacks in Paris and California. Former President Jimmy Carter said his most recent brain scan showed no sign of cancer, four months after he was diagnosed with melanoma. A U.S. shipment of much-needed supplies rocketed toward the International Space Station. Kennedy Center Honors recognized “Star Wars” creator George Lucas, singer-songwriter Carole King, actor-singer Rita Moreno, conductor Seiji Ozawa and actor Cicely Tyson.
One year ago: An aviation student from Saudi Arabia opened fire inside a classroom at the Naval Air Station Pensacola in Florida, killing three people and wounding two sheriff’s deputies before one of the deputies killed him. (U.S. officials later said that Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani had communicated with al-Qaida operatives about planning and tactics in the months leading up to the attack.)
Today’s Birthdays: Comedy performer David Ossman is 84. Actor Patrick Bauchau is 82. Country singer Helen Cornelius is 79. Actor James Naughton is 75. Former Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood is 75. Rhythm-and-blues singer Frankie Beverly (Maze) is 74. Former Sen. Don Nickles, R-Okla., is 72. Actor JoBeth Williams is 72. Actor Tom Hulce is 67. Actor Wil Shriner is 67. Actor Kin Shriner is 67. Actor Miles Chapin is 66. Rock musician Rick Buckler (The Jam) is 65. Comedian Steven Wright is 65. Country singer Bill Lloyd is 65. Singer Tish Hinojosa is 65.
Rock musician Peter Buck (R.E.M.) is 64. Rock musician David Lovering (Pixies) is 59. Actor Janine Turner is 58. Rock musician Ben Watt (Everything But The Girl) is 58. Writer-director Judd Apatow is 53. Rock musician Ulf “Buddha” Ekberg (Ace of Base) is 50. Writer-director Craig Brewer is 49. Actor Colleen Haskell is 44. Actor Lindsay Price is 44. Actor Ashley Madekwe is 39. Actor Nora Kirkpatrick is 36. Christian rock musician Jacob Chesnut (Rush of Fools) is 31. Tennis player CoCo Vandeweghe is 29. NBA star Giannis Antetokounmpo is 26.