On this day in history, December 6

The last of the iconic Boeing 747s leaves the production line in Everett, Washington. Picture: Boeing

The last of the iconic Boeing 747s leaves the production line in Everett, Washington. Picture: Boeing

Published Dec 6, 2023


What happened today, back in the day

1240 The Mongols occupy and destroy Kyiv.

1424 Don Alfonso V of Aragon grants Barcelona the right to exclude Jews.

1735 First recorded appendectomy takes place at St George’s Hospital, in London.

1745 The army of ‘The Highland Laddie’, Bonnie Prince Charlie, retreats to Scotland after entering Derby, 190km from London.

1853 Pieter Marais is appointed official gold seeker in the Transvaal, after his discoveries in California.

1865 The Battle of Platberg is fought during the Orange Free State-Basotho War.

1907 A coal mine explosion in West Virginia, kills 362 workers.

1912 The Nefertiti Bust – of the Great Royal Wife of Pharaoh Akhenaten, sculpted in 1345BC, and one of the most copied works of ancient Egypt, is discovered.

1917 A munitions ship blows up off Nova Scotia, killing 1 900 people and causing a tidal wave that destroys much of the city of Halifax.

1956 A violent water polo match between Hungary and the USSR takes place at the Summer Olympics in Melbourne. Dubbed ‘blood in the water’, the game is called off with Hungary leading 4-0 and a near riot halted by police; Hungary go on to win the gold medal.

1963 Gifted batsman Graeme Pollock – regarded as South Africa’s greatest cricketer and one of the finest batsmen to have played Test cricket – makes his international debut.

1971 The Democratic Republic of Bangladesh, (East Pakistan) is recognised by India. Pakistan breaks off diplomatic relations with India.

1991 Headman Tshabalala, founder member of Ladysmith Black Mambazo, is shot dead during a roadside argument near Durban.

1992 Hindus destroy a mosque in Ayodhya, India, leading to riots that kill 1 500 people.

1993 Twelve people are killed in Kathlehong, East Rand, as a result of a bloody feud between the ANC Youth League and SDUs).

2017 Donald Trump’s administration recognises Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

2017 ‘Supermassive’, the most distant black hole discovery is announced by astronomers in the journal, Nature. It is 13 billion light-years away and about 800 times bigger than the Sun.

2018 The oldest-known plague sample is found in the 4 900-year-old remains of 20-year old woman in Gökhem, southern Sweden.

2022 Indonesia passes a new criminal code outlawing sex outside marriage, even for foreigners.

2022 The 1 574th – and last – Boeing 747 jumbo jet rolls off the production line in Everett, Washington. The plane was bought by US air cargo operator, Atlas Air. The passenger versions of the plane could carry between 400 to 500 passengers and the first version of the 747 entered service in 1979. The once-groundbreaking, iconic jumbo jet, with the distinctive second-floor bulge, is perhaps the most notable and popular plane Boeing has ever built, with it being favoured by royalty and the elite. It serves as Airforce One, the US president’s plane. 747s were part of the South African Airways fleet.