On This Day

January 1997 in History

Events in History

  • Jan 1 The Republic of Zaïre officially joins the World Trade Organization, as Zaïre.
  • Jan 2 Howard Stern Radio Show premieres in Columbus OH on WBZX 99.7 FM
  • Jan 3 The People's Republic of China announces it will spend $US27.7 billion to fight erosion and pollution in the Yangtze and Yellow river valleys

Electoral defeatElection of Interest

Jan 7 Newt Gingrich narrowly re-elected speaker of the US House of Representatives

US Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich
US Speaker of the House
Newt Gingrich
  • Jan 9 After 5 days missing, Tony Bullimore rescued alive after his boat capsized in Southern Ocean
  • Jan 10 1st Comet of 1997 Discovered: Comet 1997 A1
  • Jan 10 Dow Corning provides $295 billion to settle breast implant suits
  • Jan 10 Italy's new 1,000 lire coin shows divided Germany on map

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 10 Arnoldo Aleman sworn in as president of Nicaragua

President of Nicaragua Arnoldo Aleman
President of Nicaragua
Arnoldo Aleman
  • Jan 11 Telstar 401 Satellite Fails
  • Jan 12 Space Shuttle STS 81 (Atlantis 18), launches into space
  • Jan 13 Radical guerrillas hold 72 hostages and shoot at police outside the Japanese Embassy in Lima, Peru
  • Jan 15 Space Shuttle Atlantis docks with Mir Space Station

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 15 Diana, Princess of Wales, calls for an international ban on landmines, angering ministers in the UK

Princess of Wales Diana Spencer
Princess of Wales
Diana Spencer
  • Jan 16 Anthony Stuart takes ODI hat-trick, Aus v Pakistan, MCG
  • Jan 18 In north west Rwanda, Hutu militia members kill 3 Spanish aid workers, 3 soldiers and seriously wound one other.
  • Jan 18 Boerge Ousland of Norway becomes the first person to cross Antarctica alone and unaided

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 19 Yasser Arafat returns to Hebron after more than 30 years and joins celebrations over the handover of the last Israeli-controlled West Bank city.

Palestinian Leader Yasser Arafat
Palestinian Leader
Yasser Arafat
  • Jan 20 Comet Hale-Bopp crosses Mars' orbit
  • Jan 20 Howard Stern Radio Show premieres in New Orleans LA on KKND 106.7 FM
  • Jan 20 Pakistan defeat West Indies 2-0 to win Aust one-day Series
  • Jan 20 French electronic dance duo Daft Punk release their album "Homework"
  • Jan 21 An inquiry in North Wales names more than 80 child abusers
  • Jan 22 Space shuttle Atlantis successfully returns to Earth
  • Jan 24 The Swiss government and several banks and businesses agree to create a memorial fund for victims of the Holocaust
  • Jan 26 Brunswick World Bowling Tournament of Champions won by John Gant
  • Jan 30 Minuteman III launches
  • Jan 31 "Final Fantasy VII" is released by Square and Sony Computer Entertainment to PlayStation

Birthdays in History

  • Jan 26 Pasaye, twin born 92 days after his brother (Oct 26), born in Palatine, Illinois

Deaths in History

  • Jan 1 James B. Pritchard, American theologist & archaeologist, dies at 87
  • Jan 4 Harry B Helmsley, American billionaire real estate developer (purchased Empire State Building, 1961), dies at 87
  • Jan 5 Andre Franquin, cartoonist, dies at 72
  • Jan 6 Ian Peter Leslie Smith, British journalist, dies at 52
  • Jan 6 Litz Pisk, movement teacher, dies at 87
  • Jan 7 Desmond Flower, English publisher, dies at 89
  • Jan 8 Melvin Calvin, scientist, dies at 85
  • Jan 8 Phyllis Hartnoll, writer/editor, dies at 90
  • Jan 9 Edward Osobka-Morawski, prime minister of Poland (1945-47), dies
  • Jan 9 Junaidu ibn Buhari, scholar, dies at 90
  • Jan 10 Elspeth Huxley, English author (The Flame Trees of Thika and The Mottled Lizard), dies at 89
  • Jan 10 Hilary Grover Barratt Brown, conservationist, dies at 71
  • Jan 10 Shiv Verma, Indian revolutionary soldier, dies at 88
  • Jan 10 Alexander R. Todd, British chemist (Nobel Prize 1957), dies at 89
  • Jan 10 Darrell A. Amyx, American classical archaeologist (Greek Ceramics), dies at 85
  • Jan 11 Helen Foster Snow, American journalist (reported from China in the 1930s), dies at 89
  • Jan 12 Charles Huggins, American-Canadian physician and cancer researcher (1966 Nobel Prize), dies at 95
  • Jan 12 Jean Writer-Edern Hallier, dies at 60
  • Jan 13 William Mills, painter, dies at 74
  • Jan 14 Dollard Ménard, French Canadian general (b. 1913)
  • Jan 15 Jose Ignacio Domecq, Spanish wine maker, dies at 82
  • Jan 15 Kenneth Thimann, English American botanist (Balzan Prize), dies at 92
  • Jan 16 Ennis Cosby, son of Bill Cosby, murdered on LA highway at 29
  • Jan 16 Stephen Fitz-Simon, entrepreneur, dies at 59
  • Jan 17 Andrea Fisher, American artist, dies at 41
  • Jan 17 Amha Selassie, Crown prince of Ethiopia and son of emperor Haile Selassi, dies at 82
  • Jan 17 Clyde William Tombaugh, discoverer (Pluto), dies at 90
  • Jan 17 Bert Kelly, Australian politician (b. 1912)
  • Jan 18 Myfanwy Piper, British librettist and art critic, dies at 85
  • Jan 18 Paul Tsongas, American politician (Sen-D-Mass), dies of complications from pneumonia and non-Hodgkin lymphoma at 55
  • Jan 19 George Armin Goyder, businessman/social philosopher, dies at 88
  • Jan 19 James Dickey, American poet, novelist and lecturer (Deliverance, Buckdancer's Choice), dies at 73
  • Jan 20 Edith Haisman, the oldest survivor of Titanic, dies at 100
  • Jan 20 Vladimir Yamnikov, owner (Kristall vodka), dies of cirrhosis at 56
  • Jan 21 Dennis Main-Wilson, British TV and radio producer (Marty, Till Death Us Do Part), dies of lung cancer at 72
  • Jan 21 Michael Duane, British progressive educationalist and author, dies at 81
  • Jan 21 Colonel Tom Parker [Andreas Cornelis van Kuijk], Dutch-born talent manager (Elvis Presley), dies at 87
  • Jan 22 Mollie Panter-Downes, British writer and columnist (The Shoreless Sea), dies at 90
  • Jan 22 Pilar Barbosa, Puerto Rican historian and political activist, dies at 98
  • Jan 23 Jeremy Stephen Maas, writer/art dealer, dies at 68
  • Jan 23 Laura "Dinky" Patterson, dies bungee jumping at Super Bowl rehearsal at 43
  • Jan 23 Randy Greenawalt, convicted killer, executed by injection at 47
  • Jan 23 Roger John Tayler, British astrophysicist (author of The Origin of the Chemical Elements), dies at 67
  • Jan 24 Callum Alexander MacDonald, Scottish historian, dies of cancer at 49
  • Jan 25 Jean Dixon, psychic (Gift of Prophecy), dies of a heart attack at 79
  • Jan 26 Margaret Hesse, princess of Hesse/the Rhine, dies at 83
  • Jan 26 Sarah Lucas, theatre administrator, dies at 53
  • Jan 26 Jeane Dixon, American astrologer (b. 1904)
  • Jan 27 Cecil Arthur Lewis, British fighter pilot and writer, dies at 98
  • Jan 28 Colin Welch, British political journalist and critic of Enid Blyton's Noddy series, dies at 72
  • Jan 28 Pietro Cavallero, bandit, dies at 68
  • Jan 28 Vivien Signy, nurse, dies at 80
  • Jan 29 Eric Schneider, murderer of 2 teachers, executed in MO at 35
  • Jan 29 Louis Pauwels, French writer and editor, dies at 76
  • Jan 29 Osvaldo Soriano, writer, dies at 54
  • Jan 30 Frank Tejeda, American politician (Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Texas), dies at 51
  • Jan 31 John Joseph Scanlan, Irish Catholic prelate (b. 1930)