1799 – George Washington is eulogized by Colonel Henry Lee as “1st in war, 1st in peace & 1st in the hearts of his countryman”
1811 – A theater fire in Richmond, Virginia kills the Governor of Virginia George William Smith and the president of the First National Bank of Virginia Abraham B. Venable.
1848 – 1st gold seekers arrive in Panama en route to San Francisco.
1854 – Wood-pulp paper 1st exhibited, Buffalo.
1878 – 1st US store to install electric lights, Philadelphia.
1908 – Jack Johnson TKOs Tommy Burns in 14 rounds for heavyweight boxing title, becomes 1st black heavyweight champion.
1924 – Judy Garland, 2 1/2, billed as Baby Frances, makes her show business debut.
1933 – FM radio patent granted to American engineer Edwin Howard Armstrong.
1943 – Chicago Bears win NFL championship, defeating Washington Redskins 41-21 in Chicago.
1946 – Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas opens (start of an era)
1950 – Gillette & Mutual buy All Star & World Series rights ($6M for 6 years)
1963 – The Beatles release “I Want to Hold Your Hand” and “I Saw Her Standing There” in the United States.
1973 – Horror film “The Exorcist” based on book and screenplay by William Peter Blatty, starring Linda Blai, rated X, premieres – 1st horror film to be nominated for Best Picture.
1982 – TIME’s Man of the Year is a computer.
1991 – Jack Ruby’s gun sells for $220,000 in auction.
1991 – Chuck Noll retires as NFL coach after 23 years.
1996 – Six-year-old beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey is found beaten and strangled in the basement of her family’s home in Boulder, Colorado.
1998 – Iraq announces its intention to fire upon U.S. and British warplanes that patrol the northern and southern no-fly zones.
2001 – Crude oil prices on the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) record one of their largest 1-day jumps of the year as traders become convinced that OPEC will follow through on production cuts.