1970-1979: ERA OF CRISES


Burning down the house
News-Sentinel photo by file

Burning down the house
The Rosemarie Hotel, one of the last "grand hotels" in downtown Fort Wayne, burned in 1975.


* Fort Wayne National Bank building opens.

* Paul McCartney quits the Beatles.

* Postal Reform Bill makes U.S. Pos-tal Service a government agency

* The first observance of Earth Day.

* Protesting the Vietnam War, four Kent State University students are gunned down by National Guardsmen; two black youths are killed by police at Jackson State College 11 days later.

* Jimi Hendrix dies of drug overdose.

* The Environmental Protection Agency is established.

* Janis Joplin dies of a drug overdose.


* Central High School closes.

* City-County Building opens.

* The U.S. Army finds Lt. William Calley guilty of the 1968 premeditated killings of 22 Vietnamese civilians in My Lai. He is sentenced to 10 years in prison.

* Supreme Court upholds validity of busing and redistricting to integrate schools.

* "All in the Family" debuts on CBS.

* The New York Times publishes the Pentagon Papers, classified documents that outline the growth of American involvement in Vietnam.

* The 26th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is ratified, lowering the voting age to 18 in all elections.

* Inmates at Attica (N.Y.) Correctional Facility protest prison conditions. New York Gov. Nelson Rockefeller orders state agents to storm the prison; 43 people are killed.

* Cigarette advertising is banned from television.

* Anti-hijacking regulations require screening of air passengers.

* The National Commission on Marijuana and Drug Abuse reveals that 24 million Americans have experimented with marijuana.


* The Federal Election Campaign Act requires full disclosure of campaign contributions and limits candidate spending.

* HBO starts pay-TV service for cable.

* "Pong" starts the video game craze.

* "Grease," a rock musical, opens on Broadway.

* A Gallup Poll reveals that 69 percent of Americans oppose busing to integrate public schools.

* Embassy Theatre Foundation forms to save the historic structure.

* The Equal Rights Amendment is passed and sent to the states for ratification. Only 35 states of the required 38 ratify it by the 1982 deadline.

* FBI director J. Edgar Hoover dies of a heart attack.

* The EPA outlaws nearly all uses of the pesticide DDT.

* The Associated Press reveals a 37-year U.S. government study of syphilis that denied treatment to 400 black men at the Tuskegee Institute.

* U.S. swimmer Mark Spitz earns seven gold medals in the Olympic Games in Munich, Germany. Palestinian terrorist attack of Israeli athletes leads to 14 deaths.

* In the largest landslide since the election of 1936, President Nixon, with Spiro Agnew as his running mate, is re-elected.

* Seven defendants -- including Nixon aides G. Gordon Liddy and E. Howard Hunt -- are indicted on conspiracy charges stemming from the break-in of Democratic National Committee offices at the Watergate Hotel.

* The 33rd president, Harry S. Truman, dies.


* In the landmark Roe vs. Wade decision, the Supreme Court rules that no state may prevent a woman from having an abortion during the first three months of pregnancy.

* Former President Lyndon B. Johnson dies of a heart attack.

* The Performing Arts Center, designed by architect Louis Kahn, opens in Fort Wayne.

* Protesting the Bureau of Indian Affairs policies, armed members of the American Indian Movement seize Wounded Knee on South Dakota's Ogala Reservation; more than 300 federal officers surround the town. Two people are killed, arrests are made, but charges are later dropped.

* Spiro Agnew pleads no contest to one count of tax evasion that occurred when he was Maryland governor. He resigns and is replaced by Gerald Ford of Michigan.

* The American Psychiatric Association declares that homosexuality is not a mental disorder, reversing its almost century-old stand on the issue.


* Patricia Hearst, college student and heiress to the William Randolph Hearst fortune, is kidnapped by members of the Symbionese Liberation Army. She will later join the group, be arrested and convicted of crimes.

* Atlanta Braves slugger Hank Aaron pounds his 715th home run and breaks Babe Ruth's record.

* Israel and Syria sign a cease-fire agreement to halt the Yom Kippur War.

* The House Judiciary Committee passes three articles of impeachment against Nixon, who resigns his office. Gerald Ford is sworn in as 38th president. He pardons Nixon and nominates New York Gov. Nelson Rockefeller for vice president.

* Violence erupts as white students and families opposed to busing boycott classes in Boston.

* Basketball star Wilt Chamberlain announces his retirement.

* Oakland A's pitcher Jim "Catfish" Hunter becomes baseball's first free agent.


* The Rosemarie Hotel, one of the last "grand hotels" in downtown Fort Wayne, burns.

* President Ford signs the Freedom of Information Act, which gives individuals access to federal files on themselves.

* The Vietnam War ends as North Vietnamese and Viet Cong forces enter Saigon and accept South Vietnam's surrender.

* Plymouth Congregational Church presents the first Boar's Head Festival.

* Hank Aaron, now a Milwaukee Brewer, breaks another Babe Ruth record, knocking in his 2,290th career RBI.

* Former Teamsters President Jimmy Hoffa is reported missing. Rumors that his disappearance was a result of mob ties persist today.

* The first of two attempts on President Ford's life: former Manson Family member Lynette Alice "Squeaky" Fromme and Sara Jane Moore are arrested.

* NBC's "Saturday Night Live" premieres.

* A New Jersey Superior Court judge prevents the parents of Karen Ann Quinlan, a drug-and-alcohol-overdose victim who has survived on life-support equipment, from allowing her to die. The ensuing legal battle sparks right-to-die and quality-of-care debates.


* Concordia Theological Seminary moves to Fort Wayne from Springfield, Ill.

* Historic Fort Wayne opens the gates to the Old Fort.

* High-tech entrepreneurs Steven Jobs and Stephen Wozniak establish Apple Inc. in a Silicon Valley garage. Their goal: produce no more than 100 units for $50 each.

* Reversing decisions dating back to 1972, the Supreme Court declares the death penalty constitutional and returns to the states the right to impose it.

* America celebrates its bicentennial.

* Rep. Barbara Jordan, D-Texas, becomes the first black person and the first woman to deliver the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention.

* An unidentified bacterial outbreak strikes a Legionnaires convention in Philadelphia, infecting 180 across the state and eventually killing 29.

* Romanian Nadia Comaneci becomes the first gymnast to receive a perfect 10 at the Olympics in Montreal, Canada.

* Mao Tse-tung, leader of Communist China, dies.

* Convicted killer Gary Gilmore receives a death sentence in Utah and demands swift execution by firing squad. His execution is the first in the United States in 10 years.

* Jimmy Carter is elected 39th president and the first deep-South candidate to reach the White House since before the Civil War.


* Final installment of eight-part TV adaptation of Alex Haley's book "Roots" is aired. The miniseries draws 80 million viewers, the largest television audience to date.

* The Supreme Court upholds the right of school officials to spank unruly students.

* Elvis Presley plays his last concert at Market Square Arena in Indianapolis. A few months later, he dies at Graceland.

* "Son of Sam" serial murderer David Berkowitz is arrested in Yonkers, N.Y.

* Voyager 1 follows Voyager 2 on a multi-year journey toward Saturn, Jupiter and beyond.

* "Saturday Night Fever" debuts.

* Charlie Chaplin dies.

*"Star Wars" becomes the highest-grossing movie of all time.


* Fort Wayne, and much of the Midwest, is hit by a blizzard that closes the city for days.

* The Illinois Supreme Court upholds the American Nazi Party's right to march through the predominantly Jewish town of Skokie.

* The Senate passes the Panama Canal Treaty, guaranteeing that the Canal Zone will remain neutral territory after it leaves U.S. control on Dec. 31, 1999.

* "Dallas" debuts on CBS.

* "Grease," the movie, premieres in the United States.

* The Supreme Court declares fixed racial quotas unconstitutional and helps introduce the term "reverse discrimination."

* Louise Brown, the world's first test-tube baby, is born in England.

* Three-hundred homes are buried as a result of contamination of a Niagara Falls, N.Y., neighborhood and its Love Canal water supply.

* Pope Paul VI dies of a heart attack. Pope John Paul I succeeds him on Aug. 26 but dies after only 34 days as pontiff.

* Three Americans become the first to cross the Atlantic in a hot-air balloon.

* At age 36, Muhammad Ali becomes the first fighter to win the heavyweight title three times, defeating Leon Spinks in 15 rounds.

* The Roman Catholic Church elects Pope John Paul II, the first non-Italian Supreme Pontiff in 455 years.

* Bill Clinton is elected governor of Arkansas, becoming the youngest governor in the nation at age 32.

* Followers of Jim Jones' Peoples Temple shoot and kill California Rep. Leo J. Ryan and members of his staff in Guyana. Jones orders a mass suicide by consumption of a poison-laced drink and shoots himself. More than 900 die.

* The House Assassinations Committee determines that John F. Kennedy's death was probably the result of a conspiracy, citing substantial evidence of more than one shooter.

* Electronic typewriters go on sale.

* The first major nuclear accident occurs at Three Mile Island power plant near Harrison, Pa.


* Thousands of Vietnamese "boat people" flee their homeland.

* Hollywood legend John Wayne dies.

* The SALT II talks end with long-range nuclear missile limits set at 2,250 launchers per superpower.

* President Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr of Iraq resigns, naming Vice President Saddam Hussein as his successor.

* Rap debuts on the R&B charts with the Sugar Hill Gang's "Rapper's Delight."

* Iranian students storm U.S. embassy in Teheran, demand the return of the exiled shah and take 90 hostages. Women and blacks are released, others are held 444 days.

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