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1818 – Christmas carol “Silent Night” composed by Franz Xavier Gruber is first sung at St Nicholas parish church in Obernodorf, Austria.

1851 – Fire devastates US Library of Congress in Washington, destroys 35,000 volumes.

1893 – Henry Ford completes his first useful petrol/gasoline fueled engine.

1895 – George Vanderbilt opens Biltmore Estate, the largest privately owned house in America at 178,926 square feet in Asheville, North Carolina.

1901 – Private companies allowed to use the word “postcard” in the US. Previously they were labelled “Private Mailing Cards” and known as “souvenir cards”.

1924 – Richard Rodgers Theater (46th St Chanin’s) opens at 226 W 46th NYC.

1936 – 1st radioactive isotope medicine administered in Berkeley, California.

1941 – First ships of Admiral Nagumo’s Pearl Harbor fleet return to Japan.

1943 – US President FDR appoints General Eisenhower Supreme Commander of the Allied forces.

1956 – “I Love Lucy” Christmas show airs, never put in syndication.

1961 – AFL Championship, Balboa Stadium, San Diego: Houston Oilers beat San Diego Chargers 10-3; Billy Cannon scores game’s only TD.

1968 – Apollo 8 astronauts read passages from Book of Genesis.

1973 – District of Columbia Home Act is passed, allowing residents of Washington, D.C. to elect their own local government.

1974 – Former US astronaut John Glenn joined the Senate for Ohio.

1980 – Americans remembered Iran hostages by shining lights for 417 seconds.

1982 – Chaminade, with a student body of only 850 students, beats #1 Virginia 77-72 in a Honolulu holiday basketball classic.

1990 – Saddam Hussein says Israel will be Iraq’s 1st target.

1992 – US President George H.W. Bush pardons Caspar Weinberger for Iran-contra affair.

2001 – “TIme Magazine” names New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani “Person of the Year” for leadership afer 9/11 attacks.

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