United States Historical Events in December

United States Historical Events is a daily guide to the important events that shaped America to what it is today. This is a compilation of significant events for the month of December including the birth and death of famous Americans as well as laws promulgated by authorities. The list is constantly updated to incorporate the most recent events.

United States Historical Events in December

Day Year Event
1 1955 Modern American civil rights movement is born with the arrest of Rosa Parks in Montgomery, Alabama, for refusing to give up her seat to a white man.
2 1942 Enrico Fermi leads a team of physicists that carried out the world’s first successful nuclear chain reaction at the University of Chicago.
3 1818 Illinois became the 21st State to be admitted to the Union.
4 1881 Publication of the first edition of the Los Angeles Times
5 1782 Birthday: Martin Van Buren, the 8th US president, was born in New York, USA.
6 1884 The Washington Monument in Washington, D.C. is completed.
7 1787 Delaware became the first State to be admitted to the Union.
7 1942 Birthday: Reginald Lewis was born in Baltimore, Maryland. He was the first black American to build a billion-dollar company, TLC Beatrice International Holdings Inc. See his biography here.
7 1941 Japan attacks Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.
8 1941 The United States formally enters World War Two following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.
9 1872 P. B. S. Pinchback becomes the first African-American governor of a U.S. state in Louisiana.
10 1817 Mississippi became the 20th State to be admitted to the Union.
10 1898 The Treaty of Paris was signed between the United States and Spain providing, among others, that Spain relinquishes all claim of sovereignty over and title to Cuba and also cedes Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Philippines to the United States.
11 1816 Indiana became the 19th State to be admitted to the Union.
12 1787 Pennsylvania was admitted to the Union.
13 1962 NASA launches Relay 1, the first active repeater communications satellite in orbit.
14 1799 Death: George Washington dies in Virginia, United States.
14 1819 Alabama became the 22nd State to be admitted to the Union.
15 1791 The United States Bill of Rights becomes law when the Virginia General Assembly ratified it.
16 1773 Members of the Sons of Liberty disguised as Mohawk Indians dump hundreds of crates of tea into Boston harbor as a protest against the Tea Act.
17 1777 France formally recognizes the United States.
18 1787 New Jersey was admitted to the Union.
19 1907 Darr Mine Disaster happened in Jacobs Creek, Pennsylvania. With 239 dead miners, it is one of the deadliest coal mine disasters in US history.
20 1946 The popular Christmas film It’s a Wonderful Life is first released in New York City.
21 1620 William Bradford and the Mayflower Pilgrims land on what is now known as Plymouth Rock in Plymouth, Massachusetts.
22 1807 At the urging of President Thomas Jefferson, US Congress passes the Embargo Act to forbid trade with all foreign countries.
23 1913 The Federal Reserve Act, creating the Federal Reserve System, is signed into law by President Woodrow Wilson.
24 1814 The Treaty of Ghent is signed by representatives from the United Kingdom and the United States to end the War of 1812.
25 1809 American surgeon Dr. Ephraim McDowell performs the first ovariotomy to remove a 22-pound tumor.
26 1972 Death: Harry Truman, the 33rd US president, died in Kansas City, Missouri at the age of 88.
26 2006 Death: Gerard Ford, the 38th US president, died in California at the age of 93.
27 1845 For the first time, ether anesthetic is used for childbirth by Dr. Crawford Long in Jefferson, Georgia.
28 1846 Iowa became the 29th State to be admitted to the Union.
28 1856 Birthday: Woodrow Wilson, the 28th US president, was born in Staunton, Virginia.
29 1809 Birthday: Andrew Johnson, the 17th US president, was born in Raleigh, North Carolina.
29 1845 Texas became the 28th State to be admitted to the Union.
30 1813 British soldiers burn Buffalo in New York State during the War of 1812.
31 1796 Baltimore in Maryland is incorporated as a city.

RELATED: United States Historical Events in January, February, March, April, May,June, July, August, September, October, November

US Historical Events in December
US Historical Events in December

Any comment?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.