Thank you for your idea, and such a prompt response. Still don't understand why or what was wrong.
(since the post was so old, I didn't figure on an answer anytime soon)
So, I went ahead and tried some more, instead of repair IE 6, I tried uninstall. Well, then IE5 would blow up with mshtml.dll error and MS kb articles on that were not helping. Sooo, I just used System Restore to return the Windows ME to the way it was a few weeks ago, and bing, History fixed. (reapplied this weeks hotfix and AVG a-v update, done)
I was troubled/surprized that a Google search and microsoft newsgroup search for IE History blank was not finding anything on point except this old post. Hopefully I don't have reason to try your fix, but hopefully if anyone else does that will do it. (hey you , if it worked please let us know by answering)