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December 13 Birthday Events Poster

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December 13 Historical Events

The following events took place on December 13. The list is arranged in chronological order.

Found 36 events. Showing 1 - 30.

  • 1294
    Saint Celestine V resigns the papacy after only five months; Celestine hoped to return to his previous life as an ascetic hermit.
  • 1545
    The Council of Trent begins.
  • 1577
    Sir Francis Drake sets sail from Plymouth, England, on his round-the-world voyage.
  • 1636
    The Massachusetts Bay Colony organizes three militia regiments to defend the colony against the Pequot Indians. This organization is recognized today as the founding of the National Guard of the United States.
  • 1642
    Abel Tasman reaches New Zealand.
  • 1643
    English Civil War: The Battle of Alton takes place in Hampshire.
  • 1758
    The English transport ship Duke William sinks in the North Atlantic, killing over 360 people.
  • 1769
    Dartmouth College is founded by the Reverend Eleazar Wheelock, with a royal charter from King George III, on land donated by Royal governor John Wentworth.
  • 1862
    American Civil War: At the Battle of Fredericksburg, Confederate General Robert E. Lee defeats Union Major General Ambrose Burnside.
  • 1867
    A Fenian bomb explodes in Clerkenwell, London, killing six.
  • 1928
    George Gershwin’s An American in Paris is first performed.
  • 1937
    Second Sino-Japanese War: Battle of Nanking – The city of Nanjing, defended by the National Revolutionary Army under the command of General Tang Shengzhi, falls to the Japanese. This is followed by the Nanking Massacre, in which Japanese troops rape and murder hundreds of thousands of civilians.
  • 1938
    The Holocaust: The Neuengamme concentration camp opens in the Bergedorf district of Hamburg, Germany.
  • 1939
    World War II: Battle of the River Plate – Captain Hans Langsdorff of the German Deutschland-class cruiser (pocket battleship) Admiral Graf Spee engages with Royal Navy cruisers HMS Exeter, HMS Ajax and HMNZS Achilles.
  • 1941
    World War II: The Kingdom of Hungary and Kingdom of Romania declare war on the United States.
  • 1943
    World War II: The Massacre of Kalavryta by German occupying forces in Greece.
  • 1949
    The Knesset votes to move the capital of Israel to Jerusalem.
  • 1959
    Archbishop Makarios III becomes the first President of Cyprus.
  • 1960
    While Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia visits Brazil, his Imperial Bodyguard seizes the capital and proclaims him deposed and his son, Crown Prince Asfa Wossen, Emperor.
  • 1962
    NASA launches Relay 1, the first active repeater communications satellite in orbit.
  • 1967
    Constantine II of Greece attempts an unsuccessful counter-coup against the Regime of the Colonels.
  • 1968
    Brazilian President Artur da Costa e Silva issues AI-5 (Institutional Act No. 5), enabling government by decree and suspending habeas corpus.
  • 1972
    Apollo program: Eugene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt begin the third and final extra-vehicular activity (EVA) or “Moonwalk” of Apollo 17. To date they are the last humans to set foot on the Moon.
  • 1974
    Malta becomes a republic within the Commonwealth of Nations.
  • 1977
    A DC-3 aircraft chartered from the Indianapolis-based National Jet crashes near Evansville Regional Airport, killing 29, including the University of Evansville basketball team, support staff and boosters of the team.
  • 1979
    The Canadian Government of Prime Minister Joe Clark is defeated in the House of Commons, prompting the 1980 Canadian election.
  • 1981
    General Wojciech Jaruzelski declares martial law in Poland to prevent dismantling of the communist system by Solidarity.
  • 1988
    PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat gives a speech at a UN General Assembly meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, after United States authorities refused to grant him a visa to visit UN headquarters in New York.
  • 1989
    The Troubles: Attack on Derryard checkpoint – The Provisional Irish Republican Army launches an attack on a British Army temporary vehicle checkpoint near Rosslea, Northern Ireland. Two British soldiers are killed and one badly wounded.
  • 2000
    The “Texas Seven” escape from the John B. Connally Unit near Kenedy, Texas, and go on a robbery spree, during which police officer Aubrey Hawkins is shot and killed.

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