On This Day

What Happened in December 1973

Historical Events

  • Dec 1 Australia grants self-government to Papua New Guinea

Sport awardGolf Tournament

Dec 1 Jack Nicklaus finishes at 13-under-par 275 to win the Walt Disney World Open by 1 stroke from Mason Rudolph; becomes the first player to reach $2 million in PGA Tour career earnings

  • Dec 1 38th Iron Bowl: Alabama beats Auburn 35-0 in Birmingham

Sport awardDavis Cup

Dec 1 Davis Cup Tennis, Cleveland, Ohio: Rod Laver and John Newcombe beat American pair Stan Smith and Erik van Dillen 6-1, 6-2, 6-4 to give Australia an unassailable 3-0 lead, (ends 5-0); 23rd Cup title for Australia

Tennis Player Rod Laver
Tennis Player
Rod Laver
  • Dec 2 Davis Cup Tennis, Cleveland: After clinching a famous victory the previous day, Australians Rod Laver and John Newcombe finish a 5-0 rout of the US with wins over Stan Smith and Tom Gorman
  • Dec 2 Capital Centre (USAir Arena) in Washington, D.C. opens
  • Dec 2 US Air Arena opens in Landover Maryland; NBA's Washington Bullets beat Seattle SuperSonics, 98-96; arena demolished 2002
  • Dec 3 Pioneer 10 passes Jupiter (1st fly-by of an outer planet) [Dec 4-GMT]
  • Dec 5 Chicago Cubs Ron Santo becomes 1st baseball player to invoke 10-5 rule and veto his trade (with the California Angels)
  • Dec 5 Dodgers trade Willie Davis to Expos for relief pitcher Mike Marshall

Music releaseAlbum Release

Dec 5 Paul McCartney & Wings release album "Band on the Run" in the US

Musician and Beatle Paul McCartney
Musician and Beatle
Paul McCartney
  • Dec 6 Bahrain's constitution goes into effect

Electoral defeatElection of Interest

Dec 6 Gerald Ford sworn-in as first unelected Vice President, succeeds Spiro Agnew who resigned over corruption allegations

38th US President Gerald Ford
38th US President
Gerald Ford
Vice President of the United States Spiro Agnew
Vice President of the United States
Spiro Agnew
  • Dec 6 NL votes to move San Diego Padres to Washington, D.C. (doesn't happen)
  • Dec 7 Orioles sell pitcher Eddie Watt to the Phillies
  • Dec 7 Phillies sell infielder-outfielder Cesar Tovar to the Texas Rangers

  • Dec 7 Paul McCartney & Wings release "Band on the Run" in the UK
  • Dec 8 "Seesaw" closes at Uris Theater NYC after 296 performances
  • Dec 8 39th Heisman Trophy Award: John Cappelletti, Penn State (RB)

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 8 Romanian tennis star Ilie Năstase wins his 3rd consecutive season-ending ATP Masters Grand Prix title with a 6–3, 7–5, 4–6, 6–3 win over Dutchman Tom Okker in Boston, Massachusetts

Tennis Champion Ilie Năstase
Tennis Champion
Ilie Năstase
  • Dec 9 "Pajama Game" opens at Lunt Fontanne Theater NYC for 65 performances
  • Dec 9 St Louis Cardinal Jim Bakken kicks 6 field goals vs Atlanta Falcons
  • Dec 9 Sunningdale Agreement in Northern Ireland
  • Dec 9 Arab oil ministers announce a further production cut of 5 percent for January for non-friendly countries

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 10 First time since 1885, tennis has 2 top male players - Americans Stan Smith and Jimmy Connors

Tennis Legend Jimmy Connors
Tennis Legend
Jimmy Connors
  • Dec 11 Houston Astro Caesar Cedino jailed in death of 19 year old woman
  • Dec 11 NA Soccer League awards LA, San Francisco, Seattle & Vancouver franchises

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 11 West German chancellor Willy Brandt normalizes trade with Czechoslovakia

Chancellor of West Germany Willy Brandt
Chancellor of West Germany
Willy Brandt
  • Dec 12 Canada begins selling Olympic coins ($5 & $10 silver coins)
  • Dec 12 San Diego files anti-trust against NL (stopping Padres move to DC)
  • Dec 13 MPLA/FNLA accord about combat against Portuguese Libya
  • Dec 13 World Football League grants 1st franchise (Detroit)
  • Dec 15 American Psychiatric Association declares homosexuality is not a mental illness
  • Dec 15 Pirates of Caribbean ride opens at Disneyland
  • Dec 15 Sandy Hawley becomes 1st jockey to win 500 races in 1 year
  • Dec 15 Tennessee beats Temple 11-6 in low scoring NCAA basketball game
  • Dec 15 American kidnap victim John Paul Getty III freed after ransom paid by oil tycoon grandfather John Paul Getty

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 16 O.J. Simpson becomes 1st NFL running back to rush for 2,000 yards in a season

NFL Running Back and Convicted Criminal O.J. Simpson
NFL Running Back and Convicted Criminal
O.J. Simpson
  • Dec 17 Arabs terrorists shoot passengers on Boeing 737 to Kuwait
  • Dec 18 Soyuz 13 launched into Earth orbit for 8 days
  • Dec 18 Yanks sign Dick Williams as manager, overturned later by AL Pres

  • Dec 19 "Molly" closes at Alvin Theater NYC after 68 performances
  • Dec 19 Grenada adopts constitution
  • Dec 20 AL pres Joe Cronin refuses to allow Dick Williams to manage Yankees
  • Dec 20 Dutch Antillean government of Evertsz forms

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 20 Montreal Canadien Henri Richard scores his 1,000th NHL point

Ice Hockey Great Henri Richard
Ice Hockey Great
Henri Richard
  • Dec 21 Israel, Egypt, Syria, Jordan, US & USSR meet in Geneva to discuss the Arab-Israeli conflict
  • Dec 21 3rd Fiesta Bowl: #10 Arizona State beats Pittsburgh, 28-7
  • Dec 22 OPEC Gulf Six decides to raise the posted price of marker crude from $5.12 to $11.65 per barrel effective January 1, 1974
  • Dec 23 6 Persian Gulf nations double their oil prices
  • Dec 23 French Caravelle airliner crashes in Morocco, 106 killed
  • Dec 24 Ferryboat capsized off coast of Equador, drowning 200
  • Dec 24 District of Columbia Home Rule Act is passed, allowing residents of Washington, D.C. to elect their own local government.
  • Dec 25 Tommy Chambers (Scotland) finishes 51 yr cycle tour (799,405 miles)
  • Dec 25 The ARPANET crashes when a programming bug causes all ARPANET traffic to be routed through the server at Harvard University, causing the server to freeze.
  • Dec 25 Arab oil ministers cancel January 5 percent production cut; Saudi Arabian oil minister promises 10 percent OPEC production rise

Film release premierFilm Premier

Dec 25 "The Sting" directed by George Roy Hill, starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford and music inspired by Scott Joplin premieres in Los Angeles and New York (Best Picture 1974)

Actor Robert Redford
Actor
Robert Redford
Actor & Entrepreneur Paul Newman
Actor & Entrepreneur
Paul Newman
Ragtime Composer Scott Joplin
Ragtime Composer
Scott Joplin
  • Dec 25 Ballon d'Or: Ajax forward Johan Cruyff wins his second award for best European football player ahead of Juventus goalkeeper Dino Zoff and Bayern Munich striker Gerd Müller

Film release premierFilm Premier

Dec 26 Horror film "The Exorcist" based on book and screenplay by William Peter Blatty, starring Linda Blair, rated X, premieres - 1st horror film to be nominated for Best Picture

Writer & Filmmaker William Peter Blatty
Writer & Filmmaker
William Peter Blatty
Actor Max Von Sydow
Actor
Max Von Sydow
  • Dec 26 2 Skylab 3 astronauts walk in space for a record 7 hours
  • Dec 26 Soyuz 13 returns to Earth
  • Dec 27 LA Dodgers announce night games will start at 7:30 instead of 8
  • Dec 28 US President Nixon signs Endangered Species Act into law
  • Dec 28 Akron Ohio's Chamber of Commerce terminates itself from Soap Box Derby
  • Dec 28 Alexander Solzhenitsyn publishes "Gulag Archipelago" - a literary investigation of the police-state system in the Soviet Union
  • Dec 28 Comet Kohoutek at perihelion
  • Dec 30 1st picture of a comet from space (Comet Kohoutek-Skylab)

Sport awardAFC Championship

Dec 30 AFC Championship, Miami Orange Bowl: Miami Dolphins beat Oakland Raiders, 27-10

NFL Coach and Sportscaster John Madden
NFL Coach and Sportscaster
John Madden
  • Dec 30 NFC Championship, Texas Stadium, Irving: Minnesota Vikings beat Dallas Cowboys, 27-10
  • Dec 31 Johan Cruyff chosen European Football Player of theYear

Sport awardTennis Open

Dec 31 Australian Open Women's Tennis: Australian Evonne Goolagong Cawley beats Chris Evert 7-6, 4-6, 6-0 for her first of 4 home singles titles

Tennis Legend Chris Evert
Tennis Legend
Chris Evert
  • Dec 31 40th Sugar Bowl: #3 Notre Dame beats #1 Alabama, 24-23

Famous Birthdays

  • Dec 1 Eric Thomas, Chartage Texas, 400m hurdler
  • Dec 1 Mia Farrance, Australian canoeist (Olympics 1996), born in Melbourne, Victoria
  • Dec 1 Jon Theodore, American musician

Person of interestMonica Seles

Dec 2 Monica Seles, Yugoslavian-American tennis player (9-time Grand Slam titles), born in Novi Sad, Serbia

Tennis Player and Nine-Time Major Champion Monica Seles
Tennis Player and Nine-Time Major Champion
Monica Seles
  • Dec 2 Jan Ullrich, German cyclist
  • Dec 3 Andrew McNally, Australian baseball pitcher (Olympics 1996)
  • Dec 3 Brian Loyd, baseball catcher (Olympic bronze 1996), born in Lynwood, California
  • Dec 3 Holly Marie Combs, American actress
  • Dec 3 Super Crazy, Mexican professional wrestler
  • Dec 3 Sammy Leung, Hong Kong disc jockey
  • Dec 4 Corliss Williamson, American NBA forward (Sacramento Kings), born in Russellville, Arkansas

Person of interestTyra Banks

Dec 4 Tyra Banks, American supermodel and actress (Higher Learning, Fresh Prince of Bel Air), born in Inglewood, California

Supwemodel & Actress Tyra Banks
Supwemodel & Actress
Tyra Banks
  • Dec 4 Racci Shay, American musician, born in LaGrange, Georgia
  • Dec 4 Ferry Corsten, Dutch musician and DJ, born in Rotterdam, Netherlands
  • Dec 4 Steven Menzies, Australian rugby league footballer (Manly Sea Eagles), born in Manly, New South Wales, Australia
  • Dec 4 Kate Rusby, English folk singer and songwriter, born in Barnsley, England
  • Dec 5 Corissa Yasen, American WNBA forward and guard (Sacramento Monarchs), born in Omaha, Nebraska
  • Dec 5 Shalom Harlow, model (House of Style, Harper's Bazaar), born in Toronto, Ontario
  • Dec 5 Luboš Motl, Czech physicist
  • Dec 5 Sorin Grindeanu, Romanian Prime Minister (2017), born in Caransebeș, Romania
  • Dec 6 Tim Kohn, guard/tackle (Oakland Raiders)
  • Dec 6 Rebekah "Bekah" Mercer, American "Mercer Family Foundation" director and Republican donor, born in Yorktown Heights, New York
  • Dec 7 Terrell Owens, wide receiver (San Francisco 49ers)
  • Dec 8 Mitch Jacoby, tight end (St Louis Rams)
  • Dec 8 Monty Montgomery, defensiveback (Indianapolis Colts)
  • Dec 8 Doron Bell Jr., Canadian actor
  • Dec 8 Corey Taylor, American singer (Slipknot, Stone Sour)
  • Dec 9 Tony Batista, infielder (Oakland A's), born in Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
  • Dec 10 Bernard Holsey, defensive tackle (NY Giants)
  • Dec 10 Marcus Wall, CFL receiver (Montreal Alouettes)
  • Dec 10 Rusty LaRue, NBA guard (Chicago Bulls)
  • Dec 11 Erin Moorad, America pairs skater (& Richard Gillam), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • Dec 11 Luke Casserly, Australian soccer defender (Olyroos, Olympics 1996), born in Sydney, Australia
  • Dec 11 Ralph Intranuovo, NHL center (Edmonton Oilers), born in East York, Toronto, Canada
  • Dec 12 Michael Di Venuto, Australian cricketer (exciting Tasmanian batsman), born in Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
  • Dec 12 Reinard Wilson, American football linebacker (Cincinnati Bengals), born in Gainesville, Florida
  • Dec 12 Stanley Pritchett, American football running back (Miami Dolphins), born in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Dec 12 Walter Otta, Argentine footballer (Blooming), born in Río Tercero, Argentina
  • Dec 13 Christie Clark, American actress (Carrie Brady-Days of Our Life), born in Los Angeles, California
  • Dec 13 Shandon Anderson, American NBA forward (Utah Jazz), born in Atlanta, Goergia
  • Dec 14 Eelco Wassenaar, American field hockey midfielder (Olympics 1996)
  • Dec 14 Tia Texada, American actress and singer, born in Louisiana
  • Dec 14 Thuy Trang, Vietnamese-American actress (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers), born in Saigon, Vietnam (d. 2001)
  • Dec 15 Geoff Stewart, Australian rower (Olympics 1996)
  • Dec 15 James Stewart, Australian rower (Olympics 1996)
  • Dec 15 Mike Cherry, quarterback (NY Giants)
  • Dec 15 Mirko Ludemann, Weiwasser GER, NHL defenseman (Team Germany, Colorado)
  • Dec 15 Tammy Melinda Pearman, American soccer forward/defender (Olympics 1996), born in Brooklyn, New York
  • Dec 15 Ryu Seung-wan, South Korean actor and director
  • Dec 16 Kristie Boogert, Rotterdam Neth, tennis star (1996 Paris)
  • Dec 16 Scott Storch, Canadian-American hip-hop producer
  • Dec 16 Mariza [Marisa dos Reis Nunes], Portuguese singer (fado genre), born in Maputo, Portuguese Mozambique
  • Dec 17 Paula Radcliffe, English long-distance runner (marathon world record holder), born in Davenham, England
  • Dec 18 Jason Williams, Gonzales LA, baseball infielder (Olympic bronze 1996)
  • Dec 18 Keith Washington, NFL defensive end (Minnesota Vikings, Baltimore Ravens)
  • Dec 19 Kebu Stewart, NBA forward (Philadelphia 76ers)
  • Dec 19 Takashi Sorimachi, Japanese actor
  • Dec 19 Zulfiya Zabirova, Russian cyclist
  • Dec 20 Cory Stillman, Canadian NHL center (Calgary Flames), born in Peterborough, Canada
  • Dec 20 Jenny Boucek, WNBA guard (Cleveland Rockers), born in Nashville, Tennessee
  • Dec 20 Muadianvita Kazadi, American football linebacker (St Louis Rams), born in Zaire
  • Dec 21 Mike Alstott, American football fullback (Tampa Bay Buccaneers), born in Joliet, Illinois
  • Dec 21 Karmen Stavec, German-born Slovenian singer, born in West Berlin
  • Dec 22 Annie Pelletier, Canadian diver (Olympic bronze 1996), born in Montreal, Quebec
  • Dec 22 Jamel Williams, American football safety (Washington Redskins), born in Gary, Indiana
  • Dec 23 Tony Graziani, American football quarterback (Atlanta Falcons), born in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Dec 24 Eddie Pope, soccer defender (Olympic gold 1996), born in Greensboro, North Carolina

Person of interestStephenie Meyer

Dec 24 Stephenie Meyer, American author (Twilight Saga), born in Hartford, Connecticut,

  • Dec 25 Robbie Elliott, English footballer, born in Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
  • Dec 25 Chris Harris, American professional wrestler, born in Kentucky
  • Dec 25 Alexandre Trudeau, Canadian journalist, born in Ottawa, Canada
  • Dec 26 Ryan Berube, American 800m freestyle relay (Olympic gold 1996), born in Tequesta, Florida
  • Dec 26 Reichen Lehmkuhl, American television personality, born in Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Dec 27 Bill Clay, Yokosuka Japan, US sprint cyclist (Olympics 1996)
  • Dec 27 Wilson Cruz, actor (My So Called Life, Ally McBeal)
  • Dec 27 Kristoffer Zegers, Dutch composer
  • Dec 27 Dee Ferris, British painter
  • Dec 28 Bobby Taylor, NFL cornerback (Philadelphia Eagles), born in Houston, Texas
  • Dec 28 Garth John Da Silva, heavyweight boxer (Olympics 1996), born in Auckland, New Zealand
  • Dec 28 Herborg Kråkevik, Norwegian singer and actress, born in Jondal, Norway

Person of interestSeth Meyers

Dec 28 Seth Meyers, American actor, comedian, writer and producer (Late Night with Seth Meyers, Saturday Night Live), born in Evanston,, Illinois

Comedian and Writer Seth Meyers
Comedian and Writer
Seth Meyers
  • Dec 29 Tomas Perez, Barquisimeto Venezuela, infielder (Toronto Blue Jays), born in Lara, Venezuela
  • Dec 29 Theo Epstein, American baseball executive and President of Baseball Operations, born in NYC, New York
  • Dec 30 Don Reid, NBA guard/forward (Detroit Pistons)
  • Dec 30 Robert Walker, Australian rower (Olympics 1996)
  • Dec 30 Ato Boldon, Trinidadian athlete
  • Dec 31 Curtis Myden, Canadian 200m/400m swimmer (Olympic 2 bronze-96), born in Calgary, Alberta
  • Dec 31 George Jones, American running back (Pittsburgh Steelers), born in Greenville, South Carolina
  • Dec 31 Hiroyuki Miura, Japanese hockey defenceman (Team Japan 1998, Montreal Canadiens), born in Hokkaido, Japan
  • Dec 31 Malcolm Middleton, Scottish musician (Arab Strap), born in Dumfries, United Kingdom

Famous Weddings


LoveWedding of Interest

Dec 1 NFL running back Gale Sayers (30) weds second wife Ardythe Bullard

NFL Running Back Gale Sayers
NFL Running Back
Gale Sayers

LoveWedding of Interest

Dec 4 NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle (47) weds activist Carrie Cooke

NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle
NFL Commissioner
Pete Rozelle

LoveWedding of Interest

Dec 31 MLB executive Tony La Russa (29) weds Elaine Coker

Baseball Manager Tony La Russa
Baseball Manager
Tony La Russa

Famous Deaths


Person of interestDavid Ben-Gurion

Dec 1 David Ben-Gurion, founding father of Israel, dies in Tel Aviv at 87

First Israeli Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion
First Israeli Prime Minister
David Ben-Gurion
  • Dec 3 Emile Christian, American jazz trombonist, dies at 78
  • Dec 4 Michael O'Shea, American actor (Smart Woman), dies of a heart attack at 67

Person of interestRobert Watson-Watt

Dec 5 Robert Watson-Watt, Scottish physicist and developer of the radar and radio direction finding in WWII, dies at 81

Physicist and Radar Pioneer Robert Watson-Watt
Physicist and Radar Pioneer
Robert Watson-Watt
  • Dec 6 Justus Hermann Wetzel, composer, dies at 94
  • Dec 10 Earle Foxe, actor (Dance Fools Dance), dies at 81
  • Dec 13 Henry Green, English author (b. 1905)
  • Dec 14 Yitzhak Edel, composer, dies at 77
  • Dec 15 Orest Alexandrovich Evlahkov, composer, dies at 61
  • Dec 16 Syd Barnes, cricketer (13 Tests for Australia 1938-48), dies
  • Dec 17 Charles Greeley Abbot, American astronomer (Solar Constant), dies at 101
  • Dec 17 Patrick Hadley, composer, dies at 74
  • Dec 18 Julio César Brero [or Giulio Cesare], Italian-born Argentine composer and lawyer (Novella), dies at 64
  • Dec 18 Rasheed Turabi, Pakistani scholar, orator and philosopher, dies at 65
  • Dec 20 Bobby Darin [Walden Robert Cassotto], American singer (Mack the Knife), dies of a heart attack at 37
  • Dec 20 Luis Carrero Blanco, Prime Minister of Spain (1973), assassinated by ETA
  • Dec 22 Domingo Julio Gomez Garcia, composer, dies at 87
  • Dec 22 James Anderson, Australian tennis player (Australasian C'ship 1922, 24, 25), dies at 79
  • Dec 23 Irna Phillips, American scriptwriter who created 6 soap operas (Guiding Light), dies at 72
  • Dec 23 Arthur Richardson, Australian cricketer (9 Tests 1924-26), dies at 85
  • Dec 24 Gerard Kuiper, Dutch-American astronomer after whom the Kuiper belt is named, dies at 68
  • Dec 24 Periyar E. V. Ramasamy, Indian Social social activist and reformer, dies at 94
  • Dec 25 İsmet İnönü, Turkish statesman (b. 1884)
  • Dec 25 Gabriel Voisin, French aviation pioneer (b. 1880)
  • Dec 26 Harold B. Lee, American religious leader, Head of Mormon Church, dies at 74
  • Dec 26 Steven Geray, American actor (French Line), dies at 69
  • Dec 26 William Haines, American actor (Little Annie Rooney), dies of cancer at 73
  • Dec 30 Henri-Paul Busser, composer, dies at 101