Saturday, November 30, 2013

On This Day in History - November 30 Soviet Union Invades Finland

Once again, it should be reiterated, that this does not pretend to be a very extensive history of what happened on this day (nor is it the most original - the links can be found down below). If you know something that I am missing, by all means, shoot me an email or leave a comment, and let me know!

Nov 30, 1939: USSR attacks Finland      

On this day in 1939, the Red Army crosses the Soviet-Finnish border with 465,000 men and 1,000 aircraft. Helsinki was bombed, and 61 Finns were killed in an air raid that steeled the Finns for resistance, not capitulation.  

The overwhelming forces arrayed against Finland convinced most Western nations, as well as the Soviets themselves, that the invasion of Finland would be a cakewalk. The Soviet soldiers even wore summer uniforms, despite the onset of the Scandinavian winter; it was simply assumed that no outdoor activity, such as fighting, would be taking place. But the Helsinki raid had produced many casualties-and many photographs, including those of mothers holding dead babies, and preteen girls crippled by the bombing. Those photos were hung up everywhere to spur on Finn resistance. Although that resistance consisted of only small numbers of trained soldiers-on skis and bicycles!--fighting it out in the forests, and partisans throwing Molotov cocktails into the turrets of Soviet tanks, the refusal to submit made headlines around the world.  

President Roosevelt quickly extended $10 million in credit to Finland, while also noting that the Finns were the only people to pay back their World War I war debt to the United States in full. But by the time the Soviets had a chance to regroup, and send in massive reinforcements, the Finnish resistance was spent. By March 1940, negotiations with the Soviets began, and Finland soon lost the Karelian Isthmus, the land bridge that gave access to Leningrad, which the Soviets wanted to control.  

Nov 30, 1835: Mark Twain is born

Samuel Clemens, later known as Mark Twin, is born in Florida, Missouri, on this day in 1835.  

Clemens was apprenticed to a printer at age 13 and later worked for his older brother, who established the Hannibal Journal. In 1857, the Keokuk Daily Post commissioned him to write a series of comic travel letters, but after writing five he decided to become a steamboat captain instead. He signed on as a pilot's apprentice in 1857 and received his pilot's license in 1859, when he was 23.  

Clemens piloted boats for two years, until the Civil War halted steamboat traffic. During his time as a pilot, he picked up the term "Mark Twain," a boatman's call noting that the river was only two fathoms deep, the minimum depth for safe navigation. When Clemens returned to writing in 1861, working for the Virginia City Territorial Enterprise, he wrote a humorous travel letter signed by "Mark Twain" and continued to use the pseudonym for nearly 50 years.  

In 1864, he moved to San Francisco to work as a reporter. There, he wrote the story that made him famous: The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County.  

In 1866, he traveled to Hawaii as a correspondent for the Sacramento Union. Next, he traveled the world writing accounts for papers in California and New York, which he later published the popular book The Innocents Abroad (1869). In 1870, Clemens married the daughter of a wealthy New York coal merchant and settled in Hartford, Connecticut, where he continued to write travel accounts and lecture. In 1875, his novel Tom Sawyer was published, followed by Life on the Mississippi (1883) and his masterpiece Huckleberry Finn (1885). Bad investments left Clemens bankrupt after the publication of Huckleberry Finn, but he won back his financial standing with his next three books--Pudd'Nhead Wilson (1894), Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc (1895), and Following the Equator (1897). In 1903, he and his family moved to Italy, where his wife died. Her death left him sad and bitter, and his work, while still humorous, grew distinctly darker. He died in 1910.

Nov 30, 1917: German foreign minister celebrates revolution in Russia

On this day in 1917, Foreign Minister Richard Von Kuhlmann stands before the German Reichstag government to deliver a speech applauding the recent rise to power in Russia of Vladimir Ilyich Lenin and his radical socialist Bolshevik Party.  

Soon after November 7, 1917, when the Bolsheviks seized control in Petrograd from the provisional government--in place since the abdication of Czar Nicholas II in March--Lenin moved to secure an immediate armistice with the Central Powers in the First World War. Not surprisingly, Austria-Hungary and Germany welcomed this development with open arms; the latter nation had actually helped smuggle the exiled Lenin back to Russia the previous April. The German chancellor, Count Georg von Hertling, went so far as to suggest to Kuhlmann on November 29 that Germany make the new Russia one of its allies.  

The following day, Kuhlmann addressed the Reichstag, declaring that "Our eyes at the present moment are turned toward the east.  Russia has set the world ablaze." The mobilization of Russia, he continued, was "the actual and immediate cause" of the entire war; only now was Russia in the hands of leaders who would set things right and seek immediate peace with Germany. According to Kuhlmann, Russia's allies--Britain and France--would do well to consider following its lead, as "the German people will stand up and be prepared to beat force with force until the dawn of the better and more humane understanding which is beginning to appear in the eastern sky shall arise in the nations of the west, which are as yet filled with greed for money and power."  

While the Central Powers rejoiced at the turn of events in Petrograd, the Allies were filled with a sense of dread. With Russia out of the war, Germany would be free to transfer more manpower to the Western Front; to the south, Austria-Hungary seemed close to overpowering Italy. Although the United States had entered the war on the side of the Allies in April 1917, it was not expected to deliver troops in significant numbers until the following summer. By the end of 1917, with casualties mounting on the Western Front, the Allies looked ahead with trepidation as the possibility of victory seemed to recede ever further into the distance.

Nov 30, 1965: McNamara warns Johnson that communists are gaining strength in South Vietnam

Following a visit to South Vietnam, Defense Secretary McNamara reports in a memorandum to President Lyndon B. Johnson that the South Vietnamese government of Nguyen Cao Ky "is surviving, but not acquiring wide support or generating actions."  

He said that Viet Cong recruiting successes coupled with a continuing heavy infiltration of North Vietnamese forces indicated that "the enemy can be expected to enlarge his present strength of 110 battalion equivalents to more than 150 battalion equivalents by the end of 1966." McNamara said that U.S. policymakers faced two options: to seek a compromise settlement and keep further military commitments to a minimum, or to continue to press for a military solution, which would require substantial bombing of North Vietnam.  

In conclusion, McNamara warned that there was no guarantee of U.S. military success and that there was a real possibility of a strategic stalemate, saying that "U.S. killed in action can be expected to reach 1,000 a month." In essence, McNamara cautioned Johnson that sending additional troops was not likely to prevent the stalemate. In the end, however, Johnson chose to seek a military solution. By 1969, there were more than 500,000 U.S. troops in Vietnam.

Nov 30, 1989: "America's First Female Serial Killer" strikes

Richard Mallory, a storeowner in Palm Harbor, Florida, is last seen taking a ride with Aileen Wuornos. The following day, his car—containing his wallet, some condoms, and an empty vodka bottle—was found abandoned in a remote area of Ormond Beach. Nearly two weeks later, his body turned up in a Daytona Beach junkyard with three bullets in his chest. Mallory's murder was the first of seven committed by Aileen Wuornos over the next year. Perhaps because she was one of the few women killers to gain widespread fame and notoriety, she was inaccurately dubbed "America's first female serial killer." 

Her case was heavily publicized through television talk show appearances and a documentary, The Selling of a Serial Killer.  Wuornos had been the victim of abuse and neglect herself. Her parents split before she was born and her father, who had been arrested for child molesting, killed himself while awaiting trial in a mental institution. When her mother abandoned her at a young age, Aileen was sent to live with her grandparents. But she was kicked out of their home when she got pregnant at age 14. From 1974 to 1976, Wuornos operated under several aliases and amassed an arrest record for offenses including drunk driving, assault, and armed robbery. In 1986, she became romantically and criminally involved with a woman named Tyria Moore.  

In late 1989, Wuornos began her infamous killing spree. Five months after Richard Mallory was killed, David Spears was found dead, shot six times with a .22 caliber gun in the woods near Tampa. At around the same time, another male body turned up nearby that appeared to have been killed with the same type of gun. Three additional men met the same demise during the summer of 1990.  

When the seventh victim was found in November, the media was alerted to the possibility of a serial killer. After receiving several tips, detectives caught Wuornos in a seedy biker bar in January 1991. With Moore assisting police, Wuornos decided to confess to the killings but claimed that they had all been done in self-defense. When a jury found Wuornos guilty on January 27, 1992, she screamed out, "I'm innocent! I was raped! I hope you get raped! Scumbags of America!" Her outburst was probably ill considered, given the fact that the same jury came back to decide her penalty the next day. Wuornos was sentenced to death.

Here's a more detailed look at events that transpired on this date throughout history:

306 - St Marcellus I begins his reign as Catholic Pope
722 - Pope Gregory II names Boniface as missionary bishop
1016 - Cnut (or Canute), king of Denmark, claims the English throne the death of Edmund 'Ironside'.
1215 - Pope Innocent III closes 4th council of Lateranen
1406 - Angelo Correr elected Pope Gregory XII
1523 - Amsterdam bans assembly of heretics
1554 - England reconciles with Pope Julius III
1630 - 16,000 inhabitants of Venice died this month of plague
1648 - English Parliamentary army captures King Charles I
1678 - Roman Catholics banned from English parliament
1700 - King Charles XII of Sweden defeats Russia at Narva [NS]
1700 - Turkey declares war on Russia
1700 - Utrecht/Overijssel/Buren/Leerdam/IJsselstein go on Gregoria calendar
1731 - Beijing hit by Earthquake; about 100,000 die
1735 - States of Holland forbid Free Masonry
1747 - Dutch State of Zealand declare governorship hereditary for women
1753 - Benjamin Franklin receives Godfrey Copley-Penny
1776 - Capt Cook begins 3rd & last trip to Pacific (South Sea)
1782 - Britain signs agreement recognizing US independence
United States Founding Father Benjamin FranklinUnited States Founding Father Benjamin Franklin 1786 - Peter Leopold Joseph of Habsburg-Lorraine, Grand Duke of Tuscany, promulgates a penal reform making his country the first state to abolish the death penalty. November 30 is therefore commemorated by 300 cities around the world as Cities for Life Day.
1787 - Spanish governor leaves Philippines
1803 - Spain cedes her claims to Louisiana Territory to France
1804 - Impeachment trial of Supreme Court Justice Samuel Chase begins
1813 - Prince Willem Frederik returns to Netherlands
1824 - First ground is broken at Allenburg for the building of the original Welland Canal.
1829 - First Welland Canal opens for a trial run, 5 years to the day from the ground breaking.
1838 - Mexico declares war on France
1861 - Harper's Weekly publishes EE Beers' "All quiet along the Potomac"
1863 - Confederate troops vacate Fort Esperanza, Texas
1864 - Battle of Franklin Tennessee: Confederate attack fails, 7,700 casualities
1864 - Battle of Honey Hill SC (Broad River) 96 dead/665 wounded
1866 - Work begins on 1st US underwater highway tunnel, Chicago
1868 - The inauguration of a statue of King Charles XII of Sweden takes place in the King's garden in Stockholm.
1872 - 1st intl soccer game, Scotland-England 0-0 (Glasgow)
1885 - Opera "El Cid" premieres (Paris)
1886 - 1st commercially successful AC electric power plant opens, Buffalo
1886 - The Folies Bergère stages its first revue.
1887 - 1st indoor softball game (Chicago)
1891 - Pope Leo XIII's encyclical "Rerum novarum" published
1900 - A German engineer patents front-wheel drive for automobiles
1902 - American Old West: Second-in-command of Butch Cassidy's Wild Bunch gang, Kid Curry Logan, is sentenced to 20 years imprisonment with hard labor.
1907 - Pike Place Market dedicated in Seattle
1912 - 4th CFL Grey Cup: Hamilton Alerts defeats Toronto Argonauts, 11-4
1915 - St John Ervine's "John Ferguson," premieres in Dublin
1916 - Costa Rica becomes a signatory to the Buenos Aires copyright treaty.
1922 - 1st speed test of 1st genuine Japanese aircraft carrier Hosho
Dictator of Nazi Germany Adolf HitlerDictator of Nazi Germany Adolf Hitler 1922 - Hitler speaks to 50,000 national-socialists in Munich
1923 - Dutch Catholic minority government of Wilhelm Marx forms
1924 - 1st photo facsimile transmitted across Atlantic by radio (London-NYC)
1924 - Last French/Belgian troops leave Ruhrgebied
1924 - French/Belgium troops completely withdrawn from the Rurh
1928 - Test Cricket debut of Don Bradman, who scored 18 & 1 vs England
1929 - 17th CFL Grey Cup: Hamilton Tigers defeats Regina Roughriders, 14-3
1931 - Crystal Palace in Hyde Park London destroyed by fire
1931 - His Master's Voice & Columbia Records merge into EMI
1933 - CCC Camps are established in Cleveland Park District
1936 - London's Crystal Palace (built 1851), destroyed by fire
1937 - 3rd Heisman Trophy Award: Clint Frank, Yale (HB)
1938 - Fascist coup in Romania, fails
1938 - Germany bans Jews being lawyers
1939 - 21 U boats sunk this month (52,000 ton)
1939 - Paul Osborn's "Mornings at 7," premieres in NYC
1939 - USSR invades Finland, bombs Helsinki
1940 - 28th CFL Grey Cup (Game 1): Toronto Balmy Beach defeats Ottawa, 8-2
1940 - 32 U boats sunk this month (147,000 ton)
1941 - 101 year old Nyack-Tarrytown (NY) ferry makes its last run
1941 - 13 U boats sunk this month (62,000 ton)
1941 - Japanese Emperor Hirohito consults with admirals Shimada & Nagano
1942 - -Dec 1st: Sea battle at Tassafaronga, Guadalcanal
1942 - 109 U boats sunk this month (729,000 ton)
1942 - 30th CFL Grey Cup: Toronto Hurricanes defeats Winnipeg Bombers, 8-5
1942 - Bill Terry resigns as supervisor of NY Giants minor league system
1942 - German scout ship Altmark explode & sinks off Yokohama
1944 - Biggest & last British Battleship HMS Vanguard runs aground
1945 - 33rd CFL Grey Cup: Toronto Argonauts defeats Winn Blue Bombers, 35-0
1946 - Bradman scores 187 in 1st Test Cricket v England at the Gabba
1947 - Arab terrorist campaign opens in Palestine
1947 - Day after UN decree for Israel, Jewish settlements attacked
1948 - Baseball's Negro National League disbands
1948 - Player-manager Lou Boudreau is selected AL MVP
1948 - Soviets set up a separate municipal government in East Berlin
1949 - Chinese Communists captured Chungking
1949 - KOTV TV channel 6 in Tulsa, OK (CBS) begins broadcasting
1950 - US Pres Harry Truman threatens China with atom bomb
Baseball Player Jackie RobinsonBaseball Player Jackie Robinson 1952 - Jackie Robinson charges NY Yankees with racism
1953 - French parachutist under Col De Castries attacks Dien Bien Phu
1953 - Edward Mutesa II, the kabaka (king) of Buganda is deposed and exiled to London by Sir Andrew Cohen, Governor of Uganda.
1954 - 1st meteorite known to strike a woman (Liz Hodges-Sylacauga Ala)
1954 - 20th Heisman Trophy Award: Alan Ameche, Wisconsin (FB)
1954 - John Strydom succeeds Malan as premier of South Africa
1955 - "Pipe Dream" opens at Shubert Theater NYC for 245 performances
1955 - Argentine government disbands Peronistic party
1956 - 1st use of videotape on TV (Douglas Edwards & the News)
1956 - Floyd Patterson KOs Archie Moore in 5 for heavyweight boxing title
1957 - "Happy Hunting" closes at Majestic Theater NYC after 413 performances
1957 - 45th CFL Grey Cup: Hamilton Tiger-Cats defeats Winn Blue Bombers, 32-7
1957 - Assassination attempt on Indonesian president Sukarno, kills 8
1958 - 1st guided missile destroyer launched, Dewey, Bath, Me
1958 - WKBW TV channel 7 in Buffalo, NY (ABC) begins broadcasting
Boxing Champ Archie MooreBoxing Champ Archie Moore 1959 - Joe Foss named 1st commissioner of AFL
1960 - French Senate condemns building own nuclear weapons
1960 - Tad Mosels "All the Way Home" premieres in NYC
1961 - Billy Williams of the Cubs is voted NL Rookie of Year
1961 - USSR vetoes Kuwaits application for UN membership
1962 - U Thant of Burma elected 3rd Secretary-General of UN unanimously
1963 - 51st CFL Grey Cup: Hamilton Tiger-Cats defeats BC Lions, 21-10
1963 - Martin Walser's "Überlebensgross Herr Krott" premieres in Stuttgart
1964 - USSR launches Zond 2 towards Mars; no data returned
1966 - Barbados gains independence from Britain (National Day)
1966 - Radio time signal WWV moves from Greenbelt, Maryland
1966 - Barbados becomes independent from the United Kingdom.
1967 - Democratic People's republic of Yemen gains independence
1967 - Julie Nixon & David Eisenhower announce their engagement
1967 - Kuria Muria Islands ceded by Britain to Oman
1967 - People's Democratic Republic of Yemen declares independence from UK
1967 - People's Rep of South Yemen (Aden) gains independence from Britain
1967 - Senenator Eugene McCarthy begins run for US presidency
1967 - The Pakistan Peoples Party is founded by Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto who becomes its first Chairman later as the Head of state and Head of government after the 1971 Civil War.
1968 - 56th CFL Grey Cup: Ottawa Rough Riders defeat Calgary Stampeder, 24-21
1969 - 57th CFL Grey Cup: Ottawa Rough Riders defeats Saskatchewan, 29-11
1969 - USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR
1970 - George Harrison releases his triple album set "All Things Must Pass"
1971 - TV movie "Brian's Song," airs for 1st time on ABC-TV
1972 - BBC bans Wings' "Hi, Hi, Hi"
1972 - Illegal fireworks factory explodes killing 15 (Rome Italy)
1973 - M T Ghani scores 104 on FC debut for Commerce Bank (Pak) age 44
1973 - Firestone World Tournament of Champions won by Jim Godman
1974 - "Good Evening" closes at Plymouth Theater NYC after 438 performances
1974 - "Mack & Mabel" closes at Majestic Theater NYC after 66 performances
1974 - 20th time Islanders shut-out (3-0 vs Canucks)
1974 - Miss Teenage America Pageant
1974 - Most complete early human skeleton (Lucy, Australopithecus) is discovered by Donald Johanson, Maurice Taieb, Yves Coppens and Tim White in the Middle Awash of Ethiopia's Afar Depression.
1975 - Dahomey becomes Benin
1976 - 42nd Heisman Trophy Award: Tony Dorsett, Pittsburgh (RB)
1978 - France performs nuclear test
1979 - Ted Koppel becomes anchor of nightly news on Iranian Hostages (ABC)
1979 - USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR
1980 - "Banjo Dancing" closes at Century Theater NYC after 38 performances
1980 - "Perfectly Frank" opens at Helen Hayes Theater NYC for 16 performances
1980 - "West Side Story" closes at Minskoff Theater NYC after 341 perfs
1980 - Uruguay's new constitution rejected by referendum
1981 - NY Yankee Dave Righetti wins AL Rookie of Year Award
1981 - Porn star John Holmes arrested on fugitive charges
1981 - South Africa anti apartheid advocate Bulelani Ngcuka arrested
1981 - Yankees Dave Righetti wins AL Rookie of Year
1981 - Cold War: In Geneva, representatives from the United States and the Soviet Union begin to negotiate intermediate-range nuclear weapon reductions in Europe (the meetings ended inconclusively on December 17).
1982 - STS-6 vehicle moves to launch pad
1982 - US sub Thomas Edison collides with US Navy destroyer in So China Sea
1982 - USSR performs nuclear test
1983 - 6th Emmy Sports Award presentation
1983 - Police free kidnapped beer magnate Alfred Heineken in Amsterdam
1983 - Radio Shack announces Tandy Model 2000 computer (80186 chip)
1983 - Raúl Alfonsín wins Argentine presidential election
1983 - Sam Shepards "Fool for love," premieres in NYC
1983 - Denver Nugget coach Doug Moe, hoplessly behind, advise team to let Blazers break their scoring record
1986 - "Flamenco Puro" closes at Mark Hellinger Theater NYC after 40 perfs
1986 - 74th CFL Grey Cup: Hamilton Tiger-Cats defeats Edmonton Eskimos, 39-15
1986 - Ivan Lendl is 1st tennis player to earn over $10 million, lifetime
1987 - Afghanistan Constitution adopted
1988 - Cyclone lashes Bangladesh, Eastern India; 317 killed
1988 - France performs nuclear test at Fangataufa Island
1988 - NYC furrier sues Mike Tyson for $92,000 for non payment of purchase
1988 - Soviets stop jamming Radio Liberty; 1st time in 38 yrs
1988 - UN General Assembly (151-2) censures US for refusing PLO's Arafat visa
1988 - Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. buys RJR Nabisco for $25.07 billion USD.
1989 - Deutsche Bank board member Alfred Herrhausen is killed by a Red Army Faction terrorist bomb.
1990 - Actor Burt Lancaster suffers a stroke
1990 - Bush proposes US-Iraq meeting to avoid war
1991 - 1st world championship of women's soccer, US defeats Norway 2-1
1991 - 93 cars & 11 truck accident near SF during a dust storm, 17 die
1991 - Rob Pilatus, 27, of Milli-Vanilli attempts suicide
1991 - San Diego State's Marshall Faulk is 1st freshman to capture national rushing & scoring titles
1992 - David Boon's 14th Test Cricket century, 111 v WI at Brisbane
1992 - Intercity-train derailed at Village chief, 5 die
1993 - NFL announces 30th franchise - Jacksonville Jaguars
42nd US President Bill Clinton42nd US President Bill Clinton 1993 - President Clinton signs Brady Gun Control Bill
1994 - Beatles' 1st album in 25 years, "Live at BBC" is released in Britain
1994 - Cruiser Achille Lauro destroyed by fire at Somalia, 4 die
1994 - Man Mohan Adhikary sworn in as 1st communist premier of Nepal
1995 - Official end of Operation Desert Storm.
1997 - "Eugene Onegin" closes at Martin Beck Theater NYC
1997 - 86th Davis Cup: Sweden sweeps US in Gothenburg (5-0)
1998 - Deutsche Bank announces a $10 billion USDdeal to buy Bankers Trust, thus creating the largest financial institution in the world.
1999 - In Seattle, Washington, United States, protests against the WTO meeting by anti-globalization protesters catch police unprepared and force the cancellation of opening ceremonies.
1999 - British Aerospace and Marconi Electronic Systems merge to form BAE Systems, Europe's largest defense contractor and the fourth largest aerospace firm in the world.
2004 - Department of Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge resigns.
2004 - Longtime Jeopardy! champion Ken Jennings of Salt Lake City, Utah finally loses, leaving him with $2,520,700 USD, television's all-time biggest game show haul.
2004 - Lion Air Flight 538 crash lands in Surakarta, Central Java, Indonesia, killing 26.
2005 - John Sentamu becomes the first black archbishop in the Church of England with his enthronement as the 97th Archbishop of York.
2007 - Hillary Clinton presidential campaign office hostage crisis: Leeland Eisenberg entered the campaign office of Hillary Clinton in Rochester, New Hampshire with a device suspected of being a bomb and held three people hostage for 5 hours.
2012 - At least 32 people are killed in a Ilyushin Il-76 cargo plane crash in the Congo

1016 - English King Edmund II died.   1700 - 8,000 Swedish troops under King Charles XII defeated an army of at least 50,000 Russians at the Battle of Narva. King Charles XII died on this day.   1782 - The United States and Britain signed preliminary peace articles in Paris, ending the Revolutionary War.   1803 - Spain completed the process of ceding Louisiana to France.   1804 - U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Chase went on trial accused of political bias. He was later acquitted by the U.S. Senate.   1835 - Samuel Langhorne Clemens was born. He wrote "Tom Sawyer" and "Huckleberry Finn" under the name Mark Twain.   1838 - Three days after the French occupation of Vera Cruz Mexico declared war on France.   1853 - During the Crimean War, the Russian fleet attacked and destroyed the Turkish fleet at the battle of Sinope.   1875 - A.J. Ehrichson patented the oat-crushing machine.   1897 - Thomas Edison's own motion picture projector had its first commercial exhibition.   1936 - London's famed Crystal Palace was destroyed in a fire. The structure had been constructed for the International Exhibition of 1851.   1939 - The Russo-Finnish War began when 20 divisions of Soviet troops invaded Finland.   1940 - Lucille Ball and Cuban musician Desi Arnaz were married.   1949 - Chinese Communists captured Chungking.   1954 - In Sylacauga, AL, Elizabeth Hodges was injured when a meteorite crashed through the roof of her house. The rock weighed 8½-pounds.   1956 - CBS replayed the program "Douglas Edward and the News" three hours after it was received on the West Coast. It was the world's first broadcast via videotape.   1962 - U Thant of Burma was elected secretary-general of the United Nations, succeeding the late Dag Hammarskjold.   1966 - The former British colony of Barbados became independent.   1967 - Julie Nixon and David Eisenhower announced their engagement.   1971 - ABC-TV aired "Brian's Song." The movie was about Chicago Bears' Brian Picolo and his friendship with Gale Sayers.   1981 - The U.S. and the Soviet Union opened negotiations in Geneva that were aimed at reducing nuclear weapons in Europe.   1982 - The motion picture "Ghandi" had its world premiere in New Delhi.   1986 - "Time" magazine published an interview with U.S. President Reagan. In the article, Reagan described fired national security staffer Oliver North as a "national hero."   1988 - Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Co. took over RJR Nabisco Inc. with a bid of $24.53 billion.   1989 - Alfred Herrhausen was killed in a bombing. The Red Army Faction claimed responsibility of killing Herrhausen the chairman of West Germany's largest bank.   1989 - PLO leader Yasser Arafat was refused a visa to enter the United States in order to address the U.N. General Assebly in New York City.   1993 - U.S. President Clinton signed into law the Brady Bill. The bill required a five-day waiting period for handgun purchases and background checks of prospective buyers.   1993 - Richard Allen Davis was arrested by authorities in California. Davis confessed to abducting and slaying 12-year-old Polly Klaas of Petaluma.   1995 - President Clinton became the first U.S. chief executive to visit Northern Ireland.   1998 - The Deutsche Bank AG announced that it would acquire Bankers Trust Corp. for $10.1 billion creating the world's largest financial institution.   2000 - David Spade was assaulted with a stun gun by his longtime personal assistant, David Warren Malloy. Malloy attacked Spade during a burglary of Spade's home in Beverly Hills.   2001 - For the first time in its history, McDonald's teamed up with a retail partner on its Happy Meal promotions. Toys R Us provided plush figures from its Animal Alley.   2001 - In Seattle, WA, Gary Leon Ridgeway was arrested for four of the Green River serial killings. He was pled innocent on December 18, 2001.   2004 - In Stockholm, Sweden, the Carl Larsson painting "Boenskoerd" ("Bean Harvest") was sold at auction for $730,000. The work had been in a private collection for more than a century. The Larsson work "Vid Kattegatt" ("By Kattegatt") sold for $640,000 at the same auction.

1804 Supreme Court Justice Samuel Chase was tried for political bias. 1900 Irish author Oscar Wilde died in Paris at age 46. 1940 Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz were married. 1966 Barbados became independent of Great Britain. 1974 The fossilized remains of a female human ancestor named Lucy (after the Beatles song Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds) were found in Ethiopia. 1993 The Brady Bill, requiring a five-day waiting period for handgun purchases, is signed. 1995 President Bill Clinton became the first U.S. president to visit Northern Ireland. 2004 Ken Jennings ended his 74-game winning spree on the game show, Jeopardy!

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