Historical Events in May 1972

  • May 1 "Different Times" opens at ANTA Theater NYC for 24 performances
  • May 1 North Vietnamese troops occupy Quang Tri Activities Committee
  • May 1 Pulitzer prize awarded to Wallace Stegner (Angle of Repose)
  • May 1 Radio's Mutual Black Network premieres
  • May 2 126 killed in an electrical fire in Sunshine Silver mine, Kellogg, Idaho
  • May 2 Lt General Vernon A Walters, USA, becomes deputy director of CIA
  • May 2 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • May 4 "The Don't Make A Wave Committee," a fledgling environmental organization founded in Canada in 1971, officially changes its name to the "Greenpeace Foundation"
  • May 4 Vietcong forms revolutionary government in Quang Tri, South Vietnam
  • May 5 Alitalia DC-8 crashes west of Palermo Sicily; killing 115
  • May 6 98th Kentucky Derby: Ron Turcotte aboard Riva Ridge wins in 2:01.8
  • May 6 Deniz Gezmiş, Yusuf Aslan and Hüseyin İnan are executed in Ankara for attempting to overthrow the Constitutional order
  • May 7 26th NBA Championship: LA Lakers beat NY Knicks, 4 games to 1
  • May 8 Sabena aircraft at Lod International Airport, Tel Aviv, captured by Palestinians
  • May 10 An Irish Republican Army bomb starts a fire that destroys the Belfast Co-operative store
  • May 10 Overloaded South Korean bus plunges into reservoir, killing 77
  • May 10 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site

Sports History

May 11 Giants trade Willie Mays to Mets for pitcher Charlie Williams & cash

Music History

May 11 John Lennon says his phone is tapped by FBI on "The Dick Cavett Show"

  • May 11 Stanley Cup Final, Madison Square Garden, NYC: Wayne Cashman scores twice as Boston Bruins beat NY Rangers, 3-0 to take title, 4-2
  • May 11 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • May 12 Milwaukee Brewers beat Minnesota Twins, 4-3, in 22 innings (completed 5/13)

Music Single

May 12 Paul McCartney & Wings release single "Mary Had a Little Lamb"

  • May 13 115 die in nightclub atop 7-story Sennichi department store (Osaka Japan)
  • May 13 Battle at Springmartin: following a loyalist car bombing of a Catholic-owned pub in the Ballymurphy area of Belfast, clashes erupt between PIRA, UVF and British Army
  • May 13 Milwaukee Brewers beat Minnesota Twins, 4-3, in 22 innings (started 5/12)
  • May 14 24th Emmy Awards: "All in the Family", Carrol O'Conner & Jean Stapleton win
  • May 14 A 13 year old Catholic girl is shot dead by Loyalist paramilitaries in Ballymurphy, Belfast
  • May 14 In Willie Mays' 1st game as New York Met, his homer beats San Francisco Giants, 5-4 (his former team of over 20 years), at Shea Stadium, New York
  • May 15 "Hard Job Being God" opens at Edison Theater, NYC; runs for 6 performances

Assassination Attempt

May 15 Assassination attempt on US Governor George Wallace of Alabama by Arthur Bremer in Laurel, Maryland

  • May 15 Bus plunges into Nile River killing 50 pilgrims in Minia, Egypt
  • May 15 Ryukyu Is & Daito Is returned to Japan after 27 yrs of US control
  • May 15 The island of Okinawa, under U.S. military governance since its conquest in 1945, reverts to Japanese control.

Theater Premiere

May 16 Melvin Van Peebles' musical "Don't Play Us Cheap" opens at Barrymore Theater, NYC; runs for 164 performances

  • May 16 Phillies' Greg Luzinski's 500' HR hits Liberty Bell monument in Philadelphia Veteran's Stadium
  • May 17 Netherlands & People's Republic of China exchange ambassadors
  • May 17 The Irish Republican Army (IRA) fires on workers leaving the Mackies engineering works in west Belfast (Although the factory was sited in a Catholic area it had an almost entirely Protestant workforce)
  • May 18 "Me and The Chimp" an American TV sitcom last airs on CBS in the US
  • May 18 American basketball player John Sebastian makes 63 consecutive free throws while blindfolded
  • May 18 American pop rock band Looking Glass release their single "Brandy"
  • May 19 25th Cannes Film Festival: "The Working Class Goes to Heaven" directed by Elio Petri and "The Mattei Affair" directed by Francesco Rosi jointly awarded the Grand Prix du Festival International du Film
  • May 19 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • May 19 WMAV TV channel 18 in Oxford, MS (PBS) begins broadcasting
  • May 20 "Different Times" closes at ANTA Theater NYC after 24 performances
  • May 20 "Hard Job Being God" closes at Edison Theater NYC after 6 performances
  • May 20 5th ABA Championship: Indiana Pacers beat NY Nets, 4 games to 2
  • May 20 97th Preakness: Eldon Nelson aboard Bee Bee Bee wins in 1:55.6
  • May 20 Republic of Cameroon declared as its constitution is ratified
  • May 21 "Heathen!" opens & closes at Billy Rose Theater NYC for 1 performance

Theatrical Finale

May 21 "Lost in the Stars" based on the novel "Cry the Beloved Country" by Alan Paton closes at Imperial Theater NYC after 39 performances

Historic Event

May 21 Michelangelo's Pietà in St. Peter's Basilica in Rome is damaged by a vandal

  • May 21 The Official Irish Republican Army (OIRA) kidnaps and shoots dead William Best (19), a soldier in the Royal Irish Rangers stationed in Germany whilst on leave at home
  • May 22 Ceylon becomes Republic of Sri Lanka as its constitution is ratified
  • May 22 Over 400 women in Derry attack the offices of Official Sinn Féin in Derry, North Ireland, following the shooting of William Best by the Official Irish Republican Army
  • May 22 Ton Sijbrands becomes world checkers champion
  • May 22 US President Nixon begins visit to Moscow
  • May 24 Glasgow Rangers of Scotland win 12th European Cup Winner's Cup against Dynamo Moscow 3-2 of the Soviet Union 3-2 in Barcelona
  • May 24 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site

Boxing Title Fight

May 25 Heavyweight Joe Frazier KOs Ron Stander

  • May 25 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • May 26 In the Republic of Ireland, the Special Criminal Court is re-instituted to deal with crimes arising out of the Northern Ireland conflict; as part of the measures trial by jury is suspended
  • May 26 Joe Frazier TKOs Ron Stander in 5 for heavyweight boxing title
  • May 26 The British state-owned travel firm Thomas Cook & Son is sold to a consortium of private businesses headed by the Midland Bank
  • May 26 The Irish Republican Army (IRA) plant a bomb in Oxford Street, Belfast, killing a 64 year old woman
  • May 26 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • May 27 Charles Strouse, Lee Adams, Betty Comden and Adolph Green's musical "Applause", starring Lauren Bacall, closes at Palace Theater, NYC, after 896 performances, winning 4 Tony Awards
  • May 27 Indianapolis 500: Mark Donohue wins after leading only the final 13 laps; owner Roger Penske's first of eighteen Indy 500 victories
  • May 27 Jimmy Castor Bunch's "Troglodyte (Cave Man)" hits #6
  • May 28 Four Provisional Irish Republican Army volunteers and four civilians killed when a bomb they were preparing exploded prematurely at a house in Belfast
  • May 28 White House "plumbers" first break in at the Democratic National Headquarters and install listening devices at Watergate Complex in Washington, D.C.
  • May 29 LPGA Titleholders Championship Women's Golf, Southern Pines CC: Sandra Palmer wins first of 2 majors by a massive 10 strokes from Judy Rankin and Mickey Wright
  • May 29 The Official IRA announce a ceasefire
  • May 30 3 Japanese PFL terrorists kills 24, wound 72 at Tel Aviv's Lod Intl airport
  • May 30 The Angry Brigade goes on trial over a series of 25 bombings throughout Britain.
  • May 31 16th European Cup: Ajax beats Internazionale 2-0 at Rotterdam