This Day in History - December 2

This Day in History - December 2

Wednesday, December 02, 2020

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Today is the 337th day of 2020. There are 29 days left in the year.


1961: Cuban leader Fidel Castro declares himself a Marxist-Leninist who will lead Cuba to Communism. 


1244: Pope Innocent IV arrives at Lyon for the First Council of Lyon.

1409: The University of Leipzig opens.

1697: St Paul's Cathedral is consecrated in London.

1763: Dedication of the Touro Synagogue, in Newport, Rhode Island, the first synagogue in what will become the United States.

1804: At Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, Napoleon Bonaparte crowns himself Emperor of the French.

1805: War of the Third Coalition: Battle of Austerlitz: French troops under Napoleon Bonaparte decisively defeat a joint Russo-Austrian force.

1816: The first savings bank in the United States, the Philadelphia Savings Fund Society, opens for business.

1823: Monroe Doctrine: In a State of the Union message, US President James Monroe proclaims American neutrality in future European conflicts, and warns European powers not to interfere in the Americas.

1845: In a State of the Union message, US President James K Polk proposes that the United States should aggressively expand into the West.

1848: Franz Joseph I becomes Emperor of Austria.

1851: French President Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte overthrows the Second Republic.

1852: Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte becomes Emperor of the French as Napoleon III.

1859: Militant abolitionist leader John Brown is hanged for his October 16 raid on Harpers Ferry, West Virginia.

1865: Alabama ratifies 13th Amendment to the US Constitution, followed by North Carolina then Georgia, and US slaves were legally free within two weeks.

1867: At Tremont Temple in Boston, British author Charles Dickens gives his first public reading in the United States.

1899: The Battle of Tirad Pass, termed “The Filipino Thermopylae”, is fought.

1908: Puyi becomes Emperor of China at the age of two.

1917: Russia and the Central Powers sign an armistice at Brest-Litovsk, and peace talks leading to the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk begin.

1927: Following 19 years of Ford Model T production, the Ford Motor Company unveils the Ford Model A as its new automobile.

1939: New York City's LaGuardia Airport opens.

1943: A Luftwaffe bombing raid on the harbour of Bari, Italy, sinks numerous cargo and transport ships, including the American SS John Harvey, which is carrying a stockpile of World War I-era mustard gas.

1947: Riots break out in Jerusalem in response to the United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine.

1949: Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others is adopted.

1954: The United States Senate votes 65 to 22 to censure Joseph McCarthy for “conduct that tends to bring the Senate into dishonour and disrepute”.

1954: The Sino-American Mutual Defense Treaty, between the United States and Taiwan, is signed in Washington, DC.

1957: United Nations Security Council Resolution 126 relating to Kashmir conflict is adopted.

1960: The Archbishop of Canterbury visits Pope John XXIII. The two heads of the two major religions break a 400-year-old tradition set in the 1500s by Britain's King Henry VIII and Pope Leo X.

1962: After a trip to Vietnam at the request of US President John F Kennedy, US Senate Majority Leader Mike Mansfield becomes the first American official to comment adversely on the war's progress.

1969: The Boeing 747 jumbo jet makes its debut as 191 people, most of them reporters and photographers, fly from Seattle to New York City.

1970: The United States Environmental Protection Agency begins operations.

1971: Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Fujairah, Sharjah, Dubai, and Umm al-Quwain form the United Arab Emirates.

1976: Fidel Castro becomes President of Cuba, replacing Osvaldo Dorticós Torrado.

1980: Four American missionaries are raped and murdered by a death squad.

1982: In the first operation of its kind, doctors at the University of Utah Medical Center implant a permanent artificial heart. Barney Clark, a retired dentist, lives 112 days with the device.

1988: Benazir Bhutto is sworn in as Prime Minister of Pakistan, becoming the first woman to head the government of an Islam-dominated state.

1989: The Communist insurgency in Malaysia was ended by peace agreement signed and ratified by the Malayan Communist Party (MCP) — Malaysian and Thai governments.

1991: Canada and Poland become the first nations to recognise the independence of Ukraine from the Soviet Union.

1993: Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar is shot and killed in Medellín.

1993: NASA launches the Space Shuttle Endeavour on a mission to repair the Hubble Space Telescope.

1999: The United Kingdom devolves political power in Northern Ireland to the Northern Ireland Executive following the Good Friday Agreement.

2001: Enron Corp, the largest United States energy-trading company, files for bankruptcy protection, dealing a blow to financial markets worldwide. It is the largest bankruptcy in US history.

2015: San Bernardino attack: Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik kill 14 people and wound 22 at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino, California.

2016: Thirty-six people die in a fire at a converted Oakland, California, warehouse serving as an artist collective. 


Otto Dix, German artist (1891-1969); Maria Callas, US opera singer (1923-1977); Gianni Versace, Italian fashion designer (1946-1997); Monica Seles, Yugoslav tennis player (1973- ); Britney Spears, US pop singer (1981- ); Lucy Liu, US actress (1968- ); Clive Bright, reggae and dancehall singer “Tenor Saw” (1966- 1989)


— AP

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