By The Associated Press
Today in History
Today is Saturday, Dec. 15, the 349th day of 2018. There are 16 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On Dec. 15, 1791, the Bill of Rights, the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution, went into effect following ratification by Virginia.
On this date:
In 1890, Sioux Indian Chief Sitting Bull and 11 other tribe members were killed in Grand River, South Dakota, during a confrontation with Indian police.
In 1938, groundbreaking for the Jefferson Memorial took place in Washington, D.C. with President Franklin D. Roosevelt taking part in the ceremony.
In 1944, a single-engine plane carrying bandleader Glenn Miller, a major in the U.S. Army Air Forces, disappeared over the English Channel while en route to Paris.
In 1960, Teflon-coated skillets first went on sale, at Macy’s flagship store in New York City.
In 1961, former Nazi official Adolf Eichmann was sentenced to death by an Israeli court for crimes against humanity. (Eichmann was hanged 5 1/2 months later.)
In 1965, two U.S. manned spacecraft, Gemini 6A and Gemini 7, maneuvered toward each other while in orbit, at one point coming as close as one foot.
In 1967, the Silver Bridge between Gallipolis (gal-ih-puh-LEES’), Ohio, and Point Pleasant, West Virginia, collapsed into the Ohio River, killing 46 people.
In 1978, President Jimmy Carter announced he would grant diplomatic recognition to Communist China on New Year’s Day and sever official relations with Taiwan.
In 1989, a popular uprising began in Romania that resulted in the downfall of dictator Nicolae Ceausescu (chow-SHES’-koo).
In 1995, European Union leaders meeting in Madrid, Spain, chose “euro” as the name of the new single European currency.
In 2000, the long-troubled Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine was closed for good.
In 2001, with a crash and a large dust cloud, a 50-foot tall section of steel — the last standing piece of the World Trade Center’s facade — was brought down in New York.
Ten years ago: President-elect Barack Obama said a review by his own lawyer showed he’d had no direct contact with Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich (blah-GOY’-uh-vich) about the appointment of a Senate replacement, and that transition aides “did nothing inappropriate.” Illinois lawmakers took the first steps toward removing Blagojevich, a Democrat, from office.
Five years ago: Nelson Mandela was laid to rest in his childhood hometown, ending a 10-day mourning period for South Africa’s first black president. Michelle Bachelet easily won Chile’s presidential runoff. Academy Award-winning actress Joan Fontaine, 96, died in Carmel, California. Harold Camping, 92, a California preacher who’d used his radio ministry and thousands of billboards to broadcast the end of the world and then gave up when his date-specific doomsdays did not come to pass, died in Oakland, California.