On This Day

October 1979 in History

Events in History

  • Oct 1 Nigeria adopts constitution, Alhaji Shagari becomes president
  • Oct 1 Pope John Paul II begins his first papal visit to the USA in Boston
  • Oct 1 RKO radio network begins operation
  • Oct 1 US returns Canal Zone (but not the canal) to Panama after 75 years
  • Oct 1 Shehu Shagari becomes first and only President of Nigeria's Second Republic

Papal Visit

Oct 2 Pope John Paul II visits New York City, and at the U.N. denounces all concentration camps and torture

  • Oct 4 Hugh Leonards "Life" premieres in Dublin
  • Oct 4 USSR performs nuclear test
  • Oct 4 Typhoon Tip forms near Pohnpei in Micronesia, would go on to be the most intense and largest tropical cyclone then ever recorded
  • Oct 6 Harry Drake set long distance footbow shot record of 2,006 yds 1'9"
  • Oct 6 Pope John Paul II is 1st Pope to visit The White House, meeting with President Jimmy Carter in Washington, D.C.
  • Oct 7 USSR performs underground nuclear test
  • Oct 9 Howard Stern begins broadcasting on WCCC in Hartford, Connecticut
  • Oct 10 Panama assumes sovereignty over Canal Area (ie Canal Zone)
  • Oct 10 Recorded trace of snow in Central Park NYC
  • Oct 11 German DR frees dissidents Rudolf Bahro & Nico Hubner
  • Oct 11 Allan McLeod Cormack & Godfrey Newbold Hounsfield win Nobel Prize for medicine for developing CAT scan
  • Oct 12 Typhoon Tip becomes the most intense tropical cyclone ever recorded with peak sustained winds of 305km/h (190mph) and a wind diameter of 2,220km (1,380mi)
  • Oct 12 The lowest recorded non-tornadic atmospheric pressure, 87.0 kPa (870 mbar or 25.69 inHg), occurred in Guam, in the Western Pacific during Typhoon Tip
  • Oct 14 100,000 demonstrate in Bonn against nuclear energy
  • Oct 14 Flyers start 35 game unbeaten streak beating Toronto 4-3
  • Oct 14 1st Gay and Lesbian Civil Rights March on Washington, D.C. by over 100,000 people
  • Oct 15 1st Monday night game from NYC, Jets beat Vikings 14-7 (Shea Stad)
  • Oct 15 Chinese premier Hwa Kwofeng visits Paris
  • Oct 15 Military coup in El Salvador: President Carlos Romero flees
  • Oct 16 First global telenovela Mexican "Los ricos también lloran" (The Rich Also Cry) premieres, second foreign series to be screened in the Soviet Union
  • Oct 17 D Bautista of Mexico completes 20,000 m walk in record 1:20:06.8

Nobel Prize

Oct 17 Mother Teresa of Calcutta awarded Nobel Peace Prize

Historic Event

Oct 17 US President Jimmy Carter signs legislation creating Department of Education

Historic Event

Oct 18 Iran's Ayatollah Khomeini orders mass executions to stop

  • Oct 18 USSR performs nuclear test at Novaya Zemlya USSR
  • Oct 18 USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR

Historic Event

Oct 20 John F. Kennedy Library dedicated in Boston

Historic Event

Oct 21 Israeli minister of Foreign affairs Moshe Dayan resigns

  • Oct 22 "One Mo' Time" with Vernel Bagners premieres in NYC

Historic Event

Oct 22 Deposed Shah of Iran Mohammad Reza Pahlavi arrives in NYC for medical treatment

  • Oct 25 USSR performs underground nuclear test
  • Oct 26 Park Chung-hee, President of South Korea is assassinated by KCIA head Kim Jae-kyu. Choi Kyu-ha becomes the acting President; Kim is executed the following May.
  • Oct 27 St Vincent & Grenadines becomes independent of UK (National Day)
  • Oct 27 Voluntary Euthanasia Society publishes how-to-do-it suicide guide
  • Oct 28 USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR
  • Oct 30 NASA launches space vehicle S-203
  • Oct 30 Richard Arrington, Jr. is elected the first African American mayor in Birmingham, Alabama
  • Oct 31 Mike Flanagan, wins AL Cy Young Award
  • Oct 31 US DC-10 crashes at Mexico-City, 74 killed

Birthdays in History

  • Oct 5 Jaime Chambers, American television reporter, born in Los Angeles, California
  • Oct 26 Movsar Barayev, Chechen Islamist militia leader during the Second Chechen War, born in Argun, Chechen–Ingush ASSR, Soviet Union (d. 2002)
  • Oct 31 Saaphyri Windsor, American reality TV figure, born in Los Angeles, California

Deaths in History

  • Oct 3 Charles White, American artist (The Contribution of the Negro to American Democracy), dies at 61
  • Oct 5 Charlie Smith, self-proclaimed oldest American (137 year), dies; post-mortem research posits age 100 or 105
  • Oct 6 Elizabeth Bishop, American poet (North & South, Pulitzer 1956), dies at 68
  • Oct 10 Christopher Evans, British psychologist and computer scientist (b. 1931)
  • Oct 16 Johan Borgen, Norwegian author (Lillelord), dies at 77
  • Oct 22 Jesse Bishop, murderer, dies in Nevada gas chamber
  • Oct 26 Park Chung-hee, South Korean general and President (1963-79), assassinated by the director of the Korean Intelligence Agency at 61
  • Oct 27 Father Charles Coughlin, Canadian-American Roman Catholic priest and pro-Fascist radio broadcaster, dies at 88
  • Oct 30 Barnes Wallis, English scientist, engineer and inventor (bouncing bomb), dies at 92
  • Oct 30 Donna Rachele Mussolini, wife of Italian dictator Benito Mussolini, dies at 89