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December 22, 2013

Today in History for Monday, Dec. 22, 2013

--- — Highlight in History

On Dec. 23, 1913, the Federal Reserve System was created as President Woodrow Wilson signed the Federal Reserve Act.

On this date

In 1788, Maryland passed an act to cede an area “not exceeding ten miles square” for the seat of the national government; about 2/3 of the area became the District of Columbia.

In 1823, the poem “Account of a Visit from St. Nicholas” was published anonymously in the Troy (N.Y.) Sentinel; the verse, more popularly known as “’Twas the Night Before Christmas,” was later attributed to Clement C. Moore.

In 1928, the National Broadcasting Company set up a permanent, coast-to-coast network.

In 1933, President Franklin D. Roosevelt restored the civil rights of about 1,500 people who’d been jailed for opposing the (First) World War.

In 1941, during World War II, American forces on Wake Island surrendered to the Japanese.

In 1948, former Japanese premier Hideki Tojo and six other Japanese war leaders were executed in Tokyo.

In 1953, the Soviet Union announced the execution of Lavrentiy Beria, former head of the secret police, for treason.

In 1968, 82 crew members of the U.S. intelligence ship Pueblo were released by North Korea, 11 months after they had been captured.

In 1972, in football’s “Immaculate Reception,” Franco Harris of the Pittsburgh Steelers caught a pass thrown by Terry Bradshaw and scored a touchdown after the ball was deflected during a collision between Jack Tatum of the Oakland Raiders and the Steelers’ John Fuqua; the Steelers won, 13-7. A 6.2-magnitude earthquake struck Nicaragua; the disaster claimed some 5,000 lives.

In 1986, the experimental airplane Voyager, piloted by Dick Rutan and Jeana Yeager, completed the first non-stop, non-refueled round-the-world flight as it returned safely to Edwards Air Force Base in California.

Ten years ago

The government announced the first suspected (later confirmed) case of mad cow disease in United States, in Washington state. A jury in Chesapeake, Va., sentenced teen sniper Lee Boyd Malvo to life in prison, sparing him the death penalty. A gas well accident in southwestern China killed 233 people. New York Gov. George Pataki posthumously pardoned comedian Lenny Bruce for his 1964 obscenity conviction.

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