Following are some of the major events to have occurred on May 15:
1934 – Karlis Ulmanis seized power in a coup in Latvia.
1940 – Nylon stockings went on sale for the first time in the United States.
1955 – The Vienna Treaty, signed by Britain, France, the United States and Soviet Union, restored Austrian sovereignty.
1957 – Britain dropped its first hydrogen bomb on Christmas Island in the Pacific.
1990 – “Portrait of Doctor Gachet” by Vincent Van Gogh sold for a record $82.5 million at Christies in New York.
1991 – President Francois Mitterrand appointed Edith Cresson as France’s first woman prime minister. Known for her outspokenness, she was replaced after less than a year.
1996 – Atal Bihari Vajpayee became India’s first Hindu nationalist prime minister after his Bharatiya Janata Party emerged as the largest single group in a hung parliament.
2001 – After nearly eight years of marriage, Japan’s Princess Masako was confirmed pregnant with a possible heir to the Chrysanthemum Throne, the world’s oldest monarchy.
2002 – Former Yugoslav Army general Mile Mrksic and Milan Martic, a former rebel leader in Croatia, arrived in The Hague to surrender to the war crimes tribunal.
2007 – Canadian publisher Thomson Corp. agreed to buy Reuters for about 8.7 billion pounds ($17.2 billion) and Reuters Founders Share Company, which had the power to block a change of ownership at the 156-year-old company, backed the deal.
2010 – Australian yachtswoman Jessica Watson becomes youngest person to sail solo, unassisted around the world.