Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Today in History....December 26

* 1606, first Performance of William Shakespeare's King Lear

* 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

* 1825, several Imperial Russia army officers lead approximately 3000 soldiers on the Senate Square in the failed Decembrist uprising. ALSO:
The Erie Canal opens

* 1861, during the American Civil War: Confederate diplomatic envoys James M. Mason and John Slidell are freed by the United States government, thus heading off a possible war between the United States and Britain

* 1906, the Story of the Kelly Gang is released, widely considered to be the world's first feature film

* 1917, during World War I, President Wilson issued a proclamation authorizing the government to take over operation of the nation's railroads

* 1919, Babe Ruth sold to the Yankees

* 1933, FM radio is patented

* 1941, Winston Churchill became the first British prime minister to address a joint meeting of the U.S. Congress

* 1947, 26-inches of snow falls in 16 hours in New York City

* 1979, Soviet Special forces troops take over presidential palace in Kabul, Afghanistan

* 1982, Time Magazine's Man of the Year was for the first time given to a non-human, the personal computer

* 1991, the Supreme Soviet meets and formally dissolves the USSR

* 1996, 6-year-old beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey was found beaten and strangled in the basement of her family's home in Boulder, Colo. (To date, the slaying remains unsolved, despite a widely publicized "confession" by John Mark Karr.)

* 1998, Iraq announced its intention to fire upon U.S. and British warplanes that patrol the northern and southern no-fly zones

* 2004, more than 200,000 people, mostly in southern Asia, were killed by a tsunami triggered by the world's most powerful earthquake in 40 years beneath the Indian Ocean

* 2006, Iraq's highest court rejected Saddam Hussein's appeal of his conviction and death sentence and said the former president should be hanged within 30 days. (Saddam was executed on Dec. 30, 2006, Iraq
time.)

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