Tyson bites Holyfield's ear
Twenty-five years ago, ABC News launched its website as the start of the digital age began. As we celebrate the quarter-century milestone, we look back at some of the news stories and photos of 1997. </br></br>The heavyweight fight between Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield on June 8, 1997, made headlines when Tyson was disqualified for biting part of Holyfield’s ear off during the match.
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1st sheep cloned
Dolly, right, the first cloned sheep produced through nuclear transfer from differentiated adult sheep cells, and Polly, the world's first transgenic lamb, are in their pen at the Roslin Institute in Edinburgh, Scotland, in early December, 1997.
NetDay connects White House and schools across the country
The internet was a growing theme throughout Clinton’s administration in the 90s, with one of its main goals trying to make it safe for minors while at the same time linking every classroom and library by the year 2000. Vice President Al Gore and President Bill Clinton look at a computer following their joint, live radio address on the second national NetDay from the White House, April 19, 1997.
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1st P.D.A. launched
US Robotics personal digital assisting device, PalmPilot or (PDA), was released in 1997. While its bulky, blocky appearance would eventually be streamlined to fit in the palm of your hand. The device was the beginning of using a touch screen and connecting to the internet remotely. Becoming the precursor for what we now know as a smartphone.
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'Titanic' sails into theaters
James Cameron’s blockbuster “Titanic” starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet, was released in December 1997. It drew millions to the box office and become one of the biggest, most iconic movies in Hollywood history
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Madeleine Albright becomes 1st female Secretary of State
President Bill Clinton, left, looks on as Vice President Al Gore administers the oath to Secretary of State Madeleine Albright in the Oval Office, Jan. 23, 1997. Albright's daughters, from left, Alice, Anne and Katy look on. After a rapid-fire confirmation in the Senate, Albright was sworn in as the first female secretary of state declaring, "we must not shy from the mantle of leadership."
Clooney named People's Sexiest Man Alive
On Nov. 17, 1997, George Clooney graced the cover of People Magazine after being named its "Sexiest Man Alive." At the time, Clooney was seen weekly as emergency room doctor Doug Ross on "ER."
Princess Diana dies in tragic car crash
Princess Diana was killed in a car crash in Paris on Aug. 31, 1997. Her death resulted in worldwide mourning, with Elton John releasing an updated version of “Candle in the Wind,” along with massive amounts of flowers being left outside of Kensington Gardens. Her funeral at Westminster Abby on Sept. 6 in London drew an estimated crowd of 3 million people.
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Bird flu virus detected in China
Health officials began a mass cull of more than 1.2 million chickens and other poultry at a temporary wholesale poultry market at Cheung Sha Wan in Kowloon, China, Dec. 28, 1997, trying to eradicate the deadly bird flu virus which claimed the lives of four people in Hong Kong. Half the site was declared to be infected with the deadly bird flu virus.
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Steve Jobs returns to Apple as CEO
Apple co-founder Steve Jobs returned to the company as CEO to speak at a press conference, Nov. 10, 1997, in Cupertino, Calif. Jobs announced plans to shake the company out of financial doldrums and rival competitor Microsoft. He would continue to lead the company and innovate the way people communicate until his untimely death in 2011.
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Russia Founding Act signed
World leaders came together at the NATO Summit to sign the Russia Founding Act, on Mutual Relations, Cooperation and Security between NATO and the Russian Federation. The signed agreement outlined a road map to improving the relationship between NATO countries and the Russia Federation and stated that it would bring "a stable, peaceful and undivided Europe, whole and free, to the benefit of all its people." </br></br>Prime Minister Tony Blair, President Bill Clinton, President Boris Yeltsin, and President Jacques Chirac sign the Russia Founding Act, May 27, 1997, at the NATO Summit in Paris.
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1st 'Harry Potter' book published
The first novel in the Harry Potter series by JK Rowling, "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone," was published on June 26, 1997. Rowling's debut novel about a young wizard who learns of his magical abilities and then attends Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, only had 500 copies printed in the first edition. The book was released in the United States the following year and would become a New York Times Bestseller in 1999. From there the franchise would grow with six additional books, films, stores, a play and even amusement park rides.
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Hale-Bopp comet passes Earth
When the Hale-Bopp comet passed Earth in April 1997 it was the closest a comet came near the planet than ever before. The brightness of the comet allowed for it to be visible with the naked eye, even in cities where there was dense light pollution. </br></br>Comet Hale-Bopp is seen above the ancient stone circle of Stonehenge in southwest England, March 28, 1997.
Mars Pathfinder lands on Mars
The Mars Pathfinder launched Dec. 4, 1996 and landed on July 4, 1997. The Pathfinder was the first-ever robotic rover to land on the surface of the red planet. The rover would go on to collect important data using attached instruments to analyze the Martian atmosphere, climate, geology and the composition of its rocks and soil. </br></br>The NASA Pathfinder Sojourner Rover robotic data gathering vehicle exploring the surface terrain of the planet Mars, 1997.
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Tamagotchis arrive in US
Tamagotchis a handheld digital pet, where you raised, fed and nurtured your creature into adulthood, were released in Japan, Nov. 23, 1996, and arrived in the United States, May 1, 1997. The cute creatures and addictive nature of the toy quickly made them one of the biggest fads of the late 1990s and the early 2000s.
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Notorious B.I.G. murdered
Police, neighbors and fans wait and watch as the funeral caravan for rap artist Christopher Wallace, known as Notorious B.I.G., passes through Clinton Hill, the Brooklyn neighborhood where he grew up and first started rapping, March 18, 1997. The popular rapper was murdered in a drive-by shooting while visiting Los Angeles on March 9, 1997. His album released two weeks after his death went to No. 1 on the Billboard charts.
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Heaven's Gate mass suicide
Marshall Herff Applewhite, seen here speaking on videotape to followers, founded the organization known as Heaven's Gate, a new religious movement whose philosophy was to ascend to heaven aboard a spaceship. On March 26, 1997, he led 38 others in a mass suicide near San Diego. Messages posted to the cult's website linked the suicides to the approaching Hale-Bopp comet.
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Tiger Woods wins 1st Masters
Tiger Woods won his first Masters Tournament, April 13, 1997, in Augusta, Ga. He was the tournament's youngest winner at 21. From there he became one of the most well-known athletes in the world with numerous endorsements and a string of wins. Being mixed race he diversified the sport and brought it to a wider audience.
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'South Park' debuts 1st episode
The first episode of "South Park" aired on Aug. 13, 1997, and was the brainchild of creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker. Starting off as paper cutout animation before success turned it digital; the show followed a group of four friends living in a small Colorado mountain town and was known for its crass humor while also addressing current events and pushing social boundaries.
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UK returns Hong Kong to China
The United Kingdom formally passed its authority of Hong Kong to the People's Republic of China at midnight on July 1, 1997. This event ended 156 years of British rule. Hong Kong had been a British colony since 1842, after the first Opium War, and in 1898 Britain obtained a 99-year lease. The date of the handover in 1997 marked the end of this lease. The ceremony was held the night before with Prince Charles giving a farewell speech on behalf of the Queen.
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Netflix was founded by Marc Rudolph and Reed Hastings, pictured, as a mail-based DVD rental service, Aug. 29, 1997. DVDs had just come onto the market in 1997 and were easier to ship than VHS tape. Originally the company was pay per rental but by 1999 the company had become a subscription service. In 2007, the company launched a streaming media service with video on demand. Netflix would eventually stop its mailing service and begin creating its own content, including the production of award-winning films and television series.
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1st hybrid vehicle massed produced
Toyota Motor Co's first-generation hybrid vehicle, the "Prius," was unveiled during a press conference, Oct. 14, 1997, in Nagoya, Japan. The car was the first mass-produced hybrid passenger vehicle and lead the automotive industry on a cleaner more climate conscientious path.
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Militants kill tourists in Luxor
Security around Egypt's tourist sites were on high alert following an attack in Luxor by Islamic militants. On Nov. 17, 1997, at the Deir el-Bahri archaeological site in Luxor, assailants dressed as security killed more than 60 people, mostly tourists, before being stopped by Egyptian authorities.
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Mother Teresa dies
Catholic nun Mother Theresa died in Kolkata, India, Sept. 5, 1997. She founded the Missionaries of Charity in 1950. The congregation manages homes all over the world for people dying of HIV/AIDS, leprosy, and tuberculosis as well as providing additional services to the poor. She won a Nobel Peace Prize for her work and would become a Saint in 2016. Mother Theresa lay in repose in an open casket for a week before she received a state funeral from the Indian government.
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Ellen DeGeneres comes out on TV
Ellen DeGeneres made history on her TV sitcom "Ellen" in 1997 when she came out during an episode. The show was later canceled but DeGeneres’ bold move inspired many others to speak out and live openly.
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