1976 News and Interesting History Tidbits

Olympic Games 1976
The Summer Olympic Games of the XXI Olympiad are held in Montreal, and Quebec, Canada.

This is the first of the Summer Olympics that suffers from an organised boycott,
African countries boycotted the games in protest for the inclusion of New Zealand whose All Blacks rugby union team had toured South Africa.

The organisation of the Olympics was a financial disaster for Montreal and the Montreal games of 1976 are the most expensive Games ever organised to date.

14-year-old Nadia Comaneci of Romania scored seven perfect 10s in gymnastics and won three gold medals, the score board had only been designed for 3 digits and the score was shown as 1:00.

OPEC Price Rises
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) are to increase the price of oil further next year with an increase of 10% in January and a further 5% in July taking the price of oil to $13.30 a barrel ( A barrel is 42 gallons ) . Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates will not be implementing these increases and will only increase the price oil by 5% as they are concerned on the effect of large increases on the worlds economy.

First Legionnaires Disease
4,000 delegates from the Pennsylvania chapter of the American Legion met at the Bellevue-Stratford Hotel in Philadelphia for a four-day gathering. Several days after the event ended, many attendees became sick. By August 2, 22 people were dead and hundreds connected to the gathering were experiencing pneumonia-like symptoms. The cause was traced back to an aquatic microorganism bacteria at the hotel and the disease was later called Legionnaires disease.

Ebola Virus Sudan
The world’s first recorded Ebola virus epidemic begins making its way through the area. By the time the epidemic is over, 284 cases are reported, with about half of the victims dying from the disease.

Viking 1 Lands On Mars
On the seventh anniversary of the Apollo 11 lunar landing, the Viking 1 lander, an unmanned U.S. planetary probe, becomes the first spacecraft to successfully land on the surface of Mars.

Children and School Bus Abducted
An entire school bus of twenty six children and the driver are kidnapped in Chowchilla, California by three gunmen. They are then forced into a moving van which had been buried underground in a quarry in Livermore, California. The bus driver Ed Ray and some of the older children spent the next 16 hours digging their way out and emerge in the middle of the night and walked to a nearby guard shack at the entrance to the quarry. The quarry owner's son, Frederick Woods, and two friends, Richard and James Schoenfeld, are charged and found guilty and sentenced to life in prison.

Princess Margaret Announces Divorce
Princess Margaret, the sister of Queen Elizabeth, announced that she and her husband, Lord Snowdon, were separating after 16 years of marriage, they have two children 14-year-old Viscount David Linley and 11-year-old Lady Sarah Armstrong-Jones.

Israeli Commandos Storm Entebbe and Rescue Hostages
Israeli commandos rescue 100 hostages held by pro-Palestinian hijackers at Entebbe airport in Uganda.

Soweto Violence Anti Apartheid Demonstrations
Violence has erupted in a number of South African townships including Soweto with violent clashes between black demonstrators. The violence is triggered by a march by 10,000 students carrying banners and slogans, saying "Down with Afrikaans" and "Viva Azania" (the name given to South Africa by black nationalists).

Underground Train Bomb
The driver of a London Underground train is shot dead while chasing a gunman who detonated a bomb on his train.

Southend Pier Partly Destroyed By Fire
The end of Southend Pier on Britain's south coast is destroyed by Fire, the pier was the longest pier in the world at 1.3 miles long. The original pier made of wood dates back to 1830 and in the 1880's the pier was rebuilt of iron and has stood since then.

Lebanon Muslims and Christians Fighting
Muslims and Christians in Lebanon are fighting a fierce battle using rocket artillery and the death toll has reached over 220 with fighting still continuing , food shortages are now affecting most of the population and nether side wish to attend peace talks.

Patricia Hearst Convicted
Patricia Hearst, was convicted of taking part in a San Francisco bank robbery conducted by those who originally kidnapped her the Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA).

Howard Hughes Dies
One of the world's richest men, eccentric American billionaire Howard Hughes dies at the age of 70.

Howard Hughes received the Congressional Gold Medal in 1939 . He was an aviator, engineer, industrialist, film producer/director, philanthropist and is famous for setting multiple world air-speed records, producing the movies Hell's Angels, Scarface and The Outlaw, as well as owning and expanding Trans World Airlines ( TWA ).
He had spent the last 20 years living as a recluse in hotel penthouses around the world but is believed to have been one of the greatest minds in modern History.

Harold Wilson Resigns
The British Prime Minister Harold Wilson shocks the political world by announcing his resignation after being the Labour leader for 13 years and prime minister for almost eight years.

Seychelles Gains Independence
Seychelles a large group of Islands in the Indian Ocean Gains Independence from Great Britain in 1976

Earthquake Northern Italy
A powerful earthquake measuring 6.5 on the Richter scale strikes in the small town of Maiano in north-east Italy leaving at least 60 people dead and many more buried under rubble.

Earthquake China
An earthquake measuring between 7.8 and 8.2 magnitude on the Richter scale flattens Tangshan, a Chinese industrial city with a population of about one million people. The quake killed an estimated 242,000 people in Tangshan and surrounding areas making the earthquake one of the deadliest in recorded history.

Maguire Family Convicted
A 40-year-old Irish born mother Anne Maguire is jailed for 14 years for possessing explosives at her London home.

$2.00 bill
$2.00 bill issued nationwide with portrait of Thomas Jefferson on the front and John Trumbles Portrait of the declaration on the back . Banks experienced long queues by those collectors who believed the bills would appreciate in value

United States celebrates 200th birthday
The United States celebrates 200th birthday of independence from British Rule.

The Real Mafia Godfather Dies
The funeral of Carlo Gambino, the 'boss of the bosses' in the Mafia, takes place in New York. It is often believed that the character of Don Vito Corleone played by Marlon Brando in Mario Puzo's 'The Godfather' was based on Carlo Gambino.

Terrorist Bombs Central London
Twelve bomb have been exploded in London's West End during the night, most of Oxford Street is closed for the rest of the day while searches by the bomb squad continue for more bombs. The IRA later admitted it had planted the bombs as part of it's campaign against the British government.

First Concord Passengers
The First Concorde's with commercial passengers take off From London's Heathrow Airport to Bahrain in the Persian Gulf and Paris Orly Airport to Rio de Janeiro. Air France and British Airways begin Concorde service to Dulles Airport, Washington cutting the travel time from 7 hours to 3 1/2 hours. .

Sabena Boeing Plane Hijacked
A Sabena Boeing that was hijacked after leaving Vienna with 90 passengers and 10 crew that had been held hostage for 23 hours at Lod airport in Tel Aviv is stormed by Israeli soldiers disguised as maintenance staff who killed two of the Arab hijackers and released the passengers and crew.

Cod Wars Accident
A British naval frigate is in a collision with an Icelandic gunboat inside the 200 mile exclusion zone for foreign trawlers Iceland is enforcing. Both the UK and Iceland claimed they had the law on their side, but the fact of the matter was the cod that were inside the 200 mile limit was the true goal.

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