History of 31st December

335 - St Silvester I ends his reign as Catholic Pope
406 - 80,000 Vandels attack the Rhine at Mainz
406 - Vandals, Alans and Suebians cross the Rhine, beginning an invasion of Gallia.
535 - Byzantine General Belisarius completes the conquest of Sicily, defeating the Ostrogothic garrison of Syracuse, and ending his consulship for the year.
765 - Coffin of Ho-tse Shen-hui interred in a stupa built in China
870 - Skirmish at Englefield: Ethelred of Wessex beats Danish invasion army
1229 - James I of Aragon the Conqueror enters Medina Mayurqa (now known as Palma, Spain) thus consummating the Christian conquest of the island of Majorca.
1492 - 100,000 Jews expelled from Sicily
1502 - Cesare Borgia (son of pope Alexander VI) occupies Urbino
1564 - Willem van Orange demands freedom of conscience/religion
1600 - British East India Company chartered
1604 - Admiral Steven van der Haghen's fleet reaches Bantam
1621 - Hungarian King Bethlen Gabor/Ferdinand II sign Treaty of Mikulov
1660 - James II of England is named Duke of Normandy by Louis XIV of France.
1669 - France & Brandenburg sign secret treaty
1670 - France & England sign Boyne-treaty
1680 - Amsterdam opera at Leidsegracht opens
1687 - 1st Huguenots depart France to Cape of Good Hope
1688 - Pro-James II-earl of Devonshire occupies Nottingham [OS=Dec 21]
1695 - A window tax is imposed in England, causing many shopkeepers to brick up their windows to avoid the tax.
1700 - Frisia/Groningen adopt Gregorian calendar, tomorrow is 1/12/1701
1708 - Great Alliance captures Bridge
1711 - Duke of Marlborough fired as English army commander
1744 - James Bradley announces discovery of Earth's nutation motion (wobble)
1745 - Bonnie Prince Charlies army meets with de Esk
1756 - Russia joins the Alliance of Versailles
1758 - British expeditionary army occupies Goree (Dakar) Senegal
1762 - Mozart family moves from Vienna to Salzburg
1775 - Battle of Quebec; Americans unable to take British stronghold
1776 - Rhode Island establishes wage & price controls to curb inflation: Limit is 70 cents a day for carpenters, 42 cents for tailors
1779 - English fleet beat Dutch Merchant vessels
1781 - Bank of North America, 1st US bank opens
1783 - Import of African slaves banned by all of the Northern states
1805 - End of French Republican calendar; France returns to Gregorianism
1831 - Gramercy Park is deeded to New York City.
1841 - Alabama becomes 1st state to license dental surgeons
1852 - Future president & Mrs Rutherford B Hayes marry
1857 - Queen Victoria chooses Ottawa as new capital of Canada
1859 - Dutch colony in Dutch Indies counts 4,800 slaves
1861 - 22,990 mm of rain falls in Cherrapunji Assam in 1861, world record
1862 - -Jan 20th) Battle of Stone's River, TN (Stone River, Monfreesboro)
1862 - Battle of Murfreesboro, Tennessee
1862 - Pres Lincoln signs act admitting West Virginia to Union
1862 - Skirmish at Parker Cross Roads, Tennessee
1862 - Union ironclad ship "Monitor" sank off Cape Hatteras, NC
1870 - J D Schneiter patents rocket mail in France, (not done)
1879 - Cornerstone laid for Iolani Palace (only royal palace in US)
1879 - Cornerstone laid for Honolulu's Iolani Palace
1879 - Edison gives 1st public demonstration of his incandescent lamp
1879 - Gilbert/Sullivan's "Pirates of Penzance," premieres in NYC
1879 - Opera "Pirates of Penzance" is produced (NYC)
1890 - Ellis Island (NYC) opens as a US immigration depot
1896 - 25th auto built in US
1897 - Brooklyn's last day as a city, it incorporates into NYC (1/1/1898)
1902 - Boers & British army sign peace treaty
1904 - The first New Year's Eve celebration is held in Times Square, then known as Longacre Square, in New York, New York.
1906 - French/British/Italian treaty concerning rights on Abyssinia
1907 - For 1st time a ball drops at Times Square to signal new year
1907 - G Mahler conducts the Metropolitan Opera
1910 - US tobacco industry produced 9 billion cigarettes in 1910
1911 - Marie Curie receives her 2nd Nobel Prize
1914 - Colonel Jacob Ruppert & Cap Huston purchase NY Yankees for $460,000
1917 - Dutch Social-democratic trade union NVV counts 159,450 members
1918 - Kid Gleason replaces Pants Rowland as White Sox manager
1920 - Roy Park makes 1st-ball duck in only Test Cricket inn, v Eng at MCG
1921 - Last San Francisco firehorses retired
1923 - 1st transatlantic radio broadcast of a voice, Pittsburgh-Manchester
1923 - BBC begins using Big Ben chime ID
1923 - H Tierney/J McCarthy's musical "Kid Boots," premieres in NYC
1924 - Hubble announces existence of distant galaxies
1925 - 14th congress of CPSU decides to accelerate industry
1927 - Ponsford scores 336 against SA, giving him 1146 for month
1929 - Pope Pius XI publishes encyclical Divini illius magistri
1930 - Pontifical encyclical Casti connubii against mixed marriages
1930 - US tobacco industry produced 123 billion cigarettes in 1930
1932 - John P O'Brien sworn-in as mayor of NYC
1934 - Helen Richey becomes 1st woman to pilot an airmail transport
1935 - CPH becomes Dutch Communist Party
1935 - Charles Darrow patents Monopoly
1938 - Dr R N Harger's "drunkometer," 1st breath test, introduced in Indiana
1938 - Dutch national debt hits ƒ3,986,629,805.70
1939 - 25 U boats sunk this month (81,000 ton)
1939 - Dutch national debt hits ƒ4,218,553,180.99
1940 - 37 U boats sunk this month (213,000 ton)
1941 - Young Park (2) in the Bronx named in honor of Samuel Young
1942 - 60 U boats sunk this month (330,000 ton)
1942 - Battle in Barents Sea
1942 - Potatoes rationed in Holland
1943 - NYC's Times Square greets Frank Sinatra at Paramount Theater
1944 - 48 people die in a train accident in Ogden, Utah
1944 - Japanese army evacuates harbor city Akyab
1944 - World War II: Hungary declares war on Germany.
1945 - Bradman scores 112, his 1st post-War century, SA v Aust Services
1945 - Ratification of UN Charter completed
1946 - French troops leave Lebanon
1946 - Pres Truman officially proclaims end of WW II
1948 - Dutch police actions up Java gone on strike
1949 - 18 countries recognize Republic Indonesia
1950 - Jockeys W Shoemaker & Joe Culmone set record of 388 wins in a year
1951 - 1st battery to convert radioactive energy to electrical announced

1953 - Hulan Jack sworn in as Manhattan Borough president
1953 - WFBC (now WYFF) TV channel 4 in G'ville-Spartanburg, SC (NBC) begins
1953 - Willie Shoemaker shatters record, riding 485 winners in a year
1955 - "Vamp" closes at Winter Garden Theater NYC after 60 performances
1955 - The General Motors Corporation becomes the first U.S. corporation to make over $1 billion USD in a year.
1957 - AAU awards Bobby Morrow, James Sullivan Memorial Trophy
1958 - 47th Davis Cup: USA beats Australia in Brisbane (3-2)
1958 - Cubans dictator Batista flees
1958 - International Geophyscial Year ends
1958 - Willie Shoemaker 1st jockey to win national riding championship 4X
1961 - "lrma La Douce" closes at Plymouth Theater NYC after 527 performances
1961 - 1st performance of Beach Boys
1961 - Beach Boys play their debut gig under that name
1961 - Failed coup by Syrian group in Lebanon
1961 - Green Bay Packers shutout NY Giants 37-0 in NFL championship game
1961 - Marshall Plan expires after distributing more than $12 billion
1962 - "Match Game" debuts on NBC with host Gene Rayburn
1962 - American Basketball League announces suspension of operation
1962 - Dutch leave New Guinea
1962 - Katanga becomes part of Democratic Republic of Congo
1962 - Ohio ends suit against Reds when they agree to stay in Cin for 10 yrs
1963 - Chicago Bears win NFL championship
1963 - Dear Abby show premieres on CBS radio (runs 11 years)
1963 - Jerry Garcia & Bob Weir played music together for the 1st time
1964 - Donald Campbell (UK) sets world water speed record (276.33 mph)
1964 - Indonesia proclaims expelled from the UN
1966 - Monkee's "I'm a Believer" hits #1 & stays there for 7 weeks
1966 - Pirate Radio 390 (Radio Invicata) off England, resumes transmitting
1966 - Test Cricket debut of Bishen Singh Bedi, India v WI Calcutta, 2-92
1966 - Toboggan Chutes begin operation in Cleveland Metroparks
1967 - "Henry, Sweet Henry" closes at Palace Theater NYC after 80 perfs
1967 - 1st NBA game at Great Western Forum, LA Lakers beat Houston 147-118
1967 - Oakland Raiders beat Houston Oilers 40-7 in AFL championship game
1967 - Packers beat Cowboys 21-17 in NFL championship game (-13°F)
1968 - 1st supersonic airliner flown (Russian TU-144)
1968 - 1st test flight of Tupolev TU 144
1968 - NY Jets win AFL championship
1969 - Congo-Brazzaville becomes People's republic, under major Ngouabi
1970 - Congress authorizes Eisenhower dollar coin
1970 - Paul McCartney files a lawsuit to disolve Beatles
1970 - President Allende nationalizes Chilean coal mines
1970 - Would have been start of Aust/Eng Test Cricket at MCG, washed out
1971 - KAID TV channel 4 in Boise, ID (PBS) begins broadcasting
1971 - Lt Gen Robert E Cushman, Jr, USMC, ends term as deputy director of CIA
1972 - 39th Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma 14 beats Penn State 0
1972 - Leap second day; also in 1973-79, 1987
1972 - Miami Dolphins beat Pitts Steelers 21-7 in AFC championship game
1972 - Washington Redskins beat Dallas Cowboys 26-3 in NFC championship game
1973 - 40th Sugar Bowl: Notre Dame 24 beats Alabama 23
1973 - 61st Australian Mens Tennis: John Newcombe beats O Parun (63 67 75 61)
1973 - Johan Cruyff chosen European soccer Player of year
1974 - 41st Sugar Bowl: Nebraska 13 beats Florida 10
1974 - Free agent pitcher Catfish Hunter signs $3M 5 year NY Yank contract
1974 - Gold legal in US, Franklin Mint strikes Panama's Gold 100 balboa coin
1974 - Lindsey Buckingham & Stevie Nicks join Fleetwood Mac
1974 - NY Yankees sign Jim "Catfish" Hunter to 5 yrs for record $3.75 million
1974 - Popular Electronics displays Altair 8800 computer
1975 - 42nd Sugar Bowl: Alabama 13 beats Penn State 6
1976 - TV soap "Somerset" ends 6 year run
1976 - The Cars played their 1st gig
1977 - "Bubbling Brown Sugar" closes at ANTA Theater NYC after 766 perfs
1977 - "Man of La Mancha" closes at Palace Theater NYC after 124 performances
1977 - Amir Sheikh Jabir al-Ahmad al-Jabir Al Sabah becomes leader of Kuwait
1977 - Cambodia drops diplomatic relations with Vietnam
1977 - Donald Woods, a banned white editor flees South Africa
1977 - Ted Bundy escapes from jail in Colorado
1977 - WFAT (Bkln NY pirate radio station) begins broadcasting on 1620 AM
1978 - "Magic Show" closes at Cort Theater NYC after 1859 performances
1978 - "Runaways" closes at Plymouth Theater NYC after 199 performances
1978 - CIA director, Admiral Stansfield Turner retires from the Navy
1978 - Iran shah names Chapour Bakhtiar premier
1978 - Taiwan's final day of diplomatic relations with US
1979 - Winterland Rock Concert Hall in SF closes after 556 concerts
1980 - A Jewish owned hotel in Nairobi Kenya is bombed killing 18
1980 - NY Islanders greatest shutout margin (9-0) vs Chicago Black Hawks
1980 - Senegal president Leopold Senghor resigns
1981 - CNN Headline News debuts
1981 - Lt Jerry Rawlings becomes head of Ghana, suspends constitution
1981 - Netherlands unemployment stands at record 475,000
1982 - CBS Mystery Theater final episode on radio after 8 years
1982 - NBC radio cancels almost all of its network daily features
1982 - TV soap "Doctors" ends 19 year run
1983 - Brunei gains complete independence from Britain
1983 - Jose Happart installed as mayor of Voeren Belgium
1983 - Nigeria's National Assembly dissolves after military coup
1984 - Def Leppard drummer Rick Allen loses his arm in a car crash
1984 - NYC subway gunman Bernhard Goetz surrenders to police in NH
1984 - Rajiv Gandhi takes office as India's 6th PM succeeds his mom, Indira
1984 - Test Cricket debut of Mohammad Azharuddin, v England at Calcutta
1984 - US leaves UNESCO
1986 - Dupont Plaza Hotel fire in San Juan, Puerto Rico kills 97
1986 - Russian TU-144 flies for 1st time faster than sound
1986 - WIS-AM in Columbia SC changes call letters to WVOC (now WOMG)
1989 - "Me & My Girl" closes at Marquis Theater NYC after 1420 performances
1989 - "Threepenny Opera" closes at Lunt-Fontanne Theater NYC after 65 perfs
1989 - Actress Annabella Sciorra (Jungle Fever) weds Joe Petruzzi
1989 - Fog Bowl: Heavy fog rolls in on Bears 20-12 victory over Eagles
1989 - Jockey Kent Desormeaux sets record with 598 wins in a year
1990 - Iraq begins a military draft of 17 year olds
1990 - Sci-Fi Channel on cable TV begins transmitting

1990 - United Somali Congress seizes Presidential Palace
1991 - CPN, Communist Party of Netherland, last day of existance
1991 - Daniel R McCarthy elected NY Yankee managing general partner
1991 - Dow Jones closes at record high 3168.83
1991 - J Donald Crump resigned as CFL Commissioner
1991 - USSR, last day of existence
1992 - Target date for Europe's single market
1992 - WCBS TV news anchor Carol Martin weds Joe Terry
1993 - Barbra Striesand does her 1st live public concert in 20 years
1993 - Loveboat actress Jill Whelan (27) weds Brad St John (33)
1994 - 1st snowless December in Baltimore Maryland
1994 - Anti Apartheid Group of Netherlands (AABN) disbands
1994 - This date is skipped altogether in Kiribati as the Phoenix Islands and Line Islands change time zones from UTC-11 to UTC+13 and UTC-10 to UTC+14, respectively.
1995 - "Danny Gans on Broadway" closes at Neil Simon NYC
1995 - "Having Our Say" closes at Booth Theater NYC after 308 performances
1995 - "Heiress" closes at Cort Theater NYC after 340 performances
1995 - "Paul Roebson" closes at Longacre Theater NYC after 14 performances
1995 - "Racing Demon" closes at Vivian Beaumont Theater NYC after 48 perfs
1995 - "Tempest" closes at Broadhurst Theater NYC after 71 performances
1995 - 62nd Sugar Bowl: Virginia Tech beats Texas
1995 - Cartoonist Bill Watterson ends his "Calvin & Hobbes" comic strip
1995 - Matthew Elliott scores separate cricket century same day for Victoria
1997 - Intel cuts price of Pentium II-233 MHz from $401 to $268
1997 - Marv Levy, retires as coach of Buffalo Bills
1997 - Microsoft buys Hotmail E-mail service
1997 - More Swedes died than were born in 1997, 1st time since 1809
1997 - Orlando Hernandez, half-brother of pitcher Livan, defects from Cuba
1997 - S Afr & US surgeons separate Zambian Siamese twins joined at the head
1998 - US movie box office hits record $6.24 billion for year
1998 - Exchange rates between the euro and legacy currencies in the Eurozone become fixed.
1999 - Control of Panama Canal reverts to Panama
1999 - Boris Yeltsin resigns as President of Russia, leaving Prime Minister Vladimir Putin as the acting President.
2004 - The official opening of Taipei 101, the current tallest skyscraper in the world, standing at a height of 509 metres (1,670 feet).
2007 - Bocaue Fire. Seven people injured when a fire razed several fireworks stores in the Municipality of Bocaue, Bulacan, Philippines.
2007 - The Massive Big Dig construction project in Boston, Massachusetts ends.

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