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1987: Wall Street Crashes, Iran Contra Hearings

By Patrick Mondout

Black Monday, the day the stock market tumbled in its biggest one day point loss ever, was obviously a big news story.

Major Stories

January 25: The New York Giants defeated the Denver Broncos 39-20 in Super Bowl XXI.
February 11
: The privatized British Airways has its initial offering on the London Stock Exchange.
February 20: A bomb planted by Theodore Kaczynski (the "Unabomber") explodes in Salt Lake City seriously injuring computer store owner Gary Wright. His secretary becomes the only person to describe the Unabomber to authorities before his capture in 1996.
February 23: The first Supernova visible to the naked eyes since 1604 is seen in the Southern Hemisphere and is called Supernova 1987a.
February 23: Pop artist Andy Warhol dies after gall bladder surgery in New York.
March 19: Televangelist Jim Bakker resigns from PTL following a sexual scandal with Jessica Hahn.
May 8: Presidential candidate Gary Hart announces that he is dropping out the race his party's nomination for president following accusations of sexual impropriety involving Donna Rice, who he is photographed with.
June 1: Prime Minister Rashid Karami becomes the second Lebanese P.M. to be assassinated in five years.
June 11: Defying the odds, Margaret Thatcher becomes the first prime minister in 160 years to win a third consecutive term in the British general election.
October 16: Eighteen-month-old Jessica McClure is rescued from a well, where she'd been trapped for 58 hours. The drama is watched by millions on television.
October 19: Dow Jones average slips 554 points and world markets falls in sympathy.
November 28: Fifteen-year-old African-American Tawana Brawley claims to have been raped by six white men. Al Sharpton sees a chance for publicity and becomes her unofficial spokesman going so far as to falsely accuse the prosecutor with the crime. A grand jury finds that she lied about the case and another jury awards the prosecutor a judgment against Sharpton that he has yet to collect.
December 29: US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves Eli Lilly's antidepressant drug Prozac (fluoxetine) for use.


Iran-Contra defendant Oliver North was seen daily due to televised coverage of the congressional hearings. He would later parlay his illegal activities into an unsuccessful run for office and a career in the media.

Photo by David Senn courtesy of DOD.

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