Here’s what’s happening around the world this week:-
- December 4th – Working in the Ogoja Province in eastern Nigeria, Dr. William Foege first implemented the “surveillance and containment” strategy that would eventually eliminate smallpox throughout the world. An American epidemiologist as well as being a Lutheran missionary, Dr. Foege acted with the knowledge that smallpox was contagious for only two weeks, slow moving in its progress and, most importantly, that “infected people rarely transmitted the disease to more than a few others, mostly within the immediate household”. Consulting with 14 other missionaries in the region, Dr. Foege arranged for a communications network in villages and marketplaces, looking for signs of a smallpox infection and, “When an infected person was found, a map of his or her likely social pathways was drawn, and everyone on it immunized”. This course of action “demonstrated that smallpox could be treated and eliminated from large areas by immunizing as few as six percent of the people— if they were the right people at the right time!”
- December 6th – Over the course of two days, South Korean troops purportedly killed 456 men, women and children in two villages in the Quảng Ngãi Province of South Vietnam. On December 5, the village of Bình Hòa was surrounded at dawn by soldiers, and the inhabitants killed. The next day, troops moved to the nearby village of An Phuoc, four miles away, and murdered its inhabitants.
- December 7th – ATS-1, the first experimental equatorial synchronous satellite, was launched into geostationary orbit at 23,000 mi (37,000 km) above the equator. Carrying the Spin Scan Cloud Camera, developed by Verner E. Suomi and Robert Parent at the University of Wisconsin, ATS-1 could take full photos of the Western Hemisphere every 30 minutes, and transmit them back to Earth. “For the first time,” historians would note later, “rapid-imaging of nearly an entire hemisphere was possible. We could watch, fascinated, as storm systems developed and moved and were captured in a time series of images. Today such images are an indispensable part of weather analysis and forecasting.”
- December 7th – No. 1 in the UK charts was still Tom Jones’ The Green Green Grass of Home.
- December 8th – Born: Sinéad O’Connor, Irish singer, in Glenageary
- December 10 – At Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, Dr. Jay Sanford told the press that Jack Ruby had been diagnosed with terminal cancer. Ruby, who was weeks away from a new trial for the murder of Lee Harvey Oswald, had killed the accused presidential assassin in front of the largest number of witnesses in history, as millions of viewers watched on live national television on November 24, 1963.
But here’s what’s happening in the centre of Peggy’s Universe:-
Sunday 4th December 1966
Both very tired and queezy today!! (Hardly surprising if you read last Saturday’s entry!). Not felt like doing anything. I’ve been having a tussle with my accounts as I lost some of my shopping lists at the weekend!
Monday 5th December 1966
Don’t think I did very well on my lesson today – seemed to be overworking my right foot!! Cyril and I not feeling very fit yet. Had such a lot of work at the office that I brought a whole lot home.
Tuesday 6th December 1966
Met Miss Hutt at school this afternoon for a small meeting re children’s party. Did an hour at the office afterwards. Philip has been very sick tonight and is feeling sorry for himself.
Wednesday 7th December 1966
Kept both children in bed today. Cyril had the afternoon off to put shelves in Philip’s wardrobe so I went to work this afternoon. No more sickness from Philip – Gill seems rather ‘down’. We’re all tired I think after a bad night.
Thursday 8th December 1966
Here it is, Saturday night – what did I do on Thursday? Oh yes – worked until noon – children were OK they got up soon after I got home. Did some baking. Cyril went to London Airport so was late coming home. I did some homework.
Friday 9th December 1966
Worked until noon – children got up when I came home. Did all the washing I could find, dried and ironed it! Looking forward to having a day out tomorrow. Cyril’s cold developing.
Saturday 10th December 1966
We shopped in the village – left for Welling at 10:30 – lot of traffic about – got there 12:20. Very nice lunch and Doris moving about quite well. I went into Welling and did some Christmas shopping. We left at 6:30 – home via West End to see the lights. Very pretty. Traffic not bad at all – home 8:30. Very tired.