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Notable Historic Events

December 11th

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King Edward VIII

King Edward VIII

1936...Edward VIII becomes the first English Monarch to abdicate the throne. He serves less than one year as king before resigning for "the woman I love."

1941...Adolf Hitler declares war on the United States. It is four days after the Japanese attack at Pearl Harbor and the responding declaration of war by the United States. Adolf Hitler appears to consult with no one. Apparently he has confidence that the Japanese will prevail.

2008...Financier Bernard Madoff is arrested for his decades long $65 billion dollar Ponzi scheme. Public outrage only increases when the it was learned that financial fraud investigator, Harry Markopolos, repeatedly warned the Securities and Exchange Commission that Madoff might be running an investment scam.

December 12th

1917...Father Edward Flanagan, a 31-year old Priest, establishes Boys Town in Omaha, Nebraska. The facility is for troubled boys. It will become America's most famous orphanage.

1941...The US Navy seizes the world's largest and fastest ocean liner, the SS Normandie. It is taken while it is docked in New York City. The ship is seized in order to prevent it from falling into the hands of the Germans living in Occupied France.

2000...General Motors announces that it will stop production of the 103-year-old Oldsmobile brand. It is the oldest auto brand in the United States.

December 13th

Sir Francis Drake

Francis Drake

1577...English seaman Francis Drake sets out from Plymouth, England to raid Spanish colonies on the Pacific Coast of America. Three years later Drake returns as the first British explorer to sail around the world.

1622...Abel Tasman, a Dutch navigator, becomes the first European explorer to locate the island group that will become known as New Zealand.

1983...The Detroit Pistons beat the Denver Nuggets 186-184 in triple overtime. The game is the highest scoring game in the National Basketball Association. (NBA).

December 14

John Travalta

John Travolta

1911...Norwegian Roald Amundsen becomes the first explorer to reach the South Pole. He beat his British Rival, Robert Scott, by a full month.

1939...The League of Nations expels the Soviet Union because of their invasion of Finland. The invasion of Finland is considered an act of aggression against Finland. The League of Nations is an international peace keeping organization formed after WWI to prevent another World War. Unfortunately, it is unable to do this.

1977...Saturday Night Fever premiers. John Travolta gives a mesmerizing performance and is launched into stardom. The disco music and dancing in the movie makes the film an instant success.

December 15th

Glen Miller

Glen Miller

1791... Virginia ratifies the Ten Amendments (Bill of Rights) as part of the US Constitution. The is the last state needed and the Ten Amendments becomes law.

1944...Legendary Band Leader Glen Miller goes missing as he travels over the English Channel to France. He is on his way to conduct a celebratory performance for the Allied Troops who participated in the liberation of Paris.

2001...The Leaning Tower of Pisa is again open to the public. It has taken $27 million dollars and 11 years to strengthen it. All repairs were done while still maintaining the famous leaning angle.

December 16th

Larry King

Larry King

1773...A group of Boston Patriots, disguised as Indians, board three British ships and dump 342 chests of tea into the harbor to protest the Tea Act. The colonists view the Tea Act as more taxation without representation. The dumping of the tea in the harbor becomes known as The Boston Tea Party.

1811...The greatest series of earthquakes in the United States begins with an earthquake near New Madrid, Missouri.The earthquakes changes the course of the Mississippi River and creates Reel Foot Lake in Tennessee.

2010...After 25 years Larry King says goodbye. Larry King Live goes off the air.

December 17th

"The Flyer" at Kitty Hawk

1903...Orville and Wilbur Wright make their historic first flight with a plane they name The Flyer at Kitty hawk, North Carolina. The plane is self-propelled and heavier than air. It stays up in the air for 12 seconds and it travels 120 feet.

1941...Rear Admiral Husband E. Kimmel is relieved of his command of the US Pacific Fleet after Pearl Harbor. Many felt he should have done more to prepare for the possibility of an attack by the Japanese.

2000...Wide receiver Terrell Owens, of the San Francisco 49ers, sets a new NFL record of twenty catches in a single game.

December 18th

Replica of The Mayflower

Replica of the Mayflower

1620...The Mayflower docks at modern day Plymouth, Massachusetts. The Puritans have come from the old world, seeking religious liberty.

1878...The Molly Maguire secret society comes to an end when John Kehoe is executed. This nefarious society justifies their vigilante justice as protection for exploited Irish-America workers. Some consider the group a forerunner of labor unions in America.

1941...Japanese soldiers land in Hong Kong with orders to take no prisoners. The Japanese invaders rope together captured soldiers and bayonet them to death in order to save on ammunition.

December 19th

George Washington praying at Valley Forge

Washington at Valley Forge

1777...The Continental Army, under General George Washington, enter into Winter Camp at Valley Forge. The winter is severe, and conditions challenging. Many of the 11,000soldiers camped at Valley Forge do not make it through the winter. However the Patriots hold together and emerge from Valley Forge stronger than ever.

1997...The epic drama Titanic, by director James Cameron, opens in theaters. It will become highest grossing movie in history.

1998...The House of Representatives approves two articles of impeachment againstPresident Bill Clinton. He is accused of lying under oath and obstruction of justice. Clinton becomes the secondUS President to be impeached.

December 20th

Elvis Presley

Elvis Presley

1803...The French hand New Orleans and Southern Louisiana over to the United States after the United States purchases the territory from France as part of the Louisiana Purchase.

1957...While spending his Christmas holidays at his newly purchased mansion, rock 'n roll star Elvis Presley receives his draft notice. Elvis impresses many of the older generation for his willingness to serve his country.

1963...Two years after the Berlin Wall is erected East Germany issues passes to 4,000 people in West Berlin. With this pass they are allowed to cross over into East Berlin, and return...but only for one day.

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