On This Day

Historical Events in December 1903

  • Dec 1 "The Great Train Robbery" the 1st Western film, released starring Justus D. Barnes and G. M. Anderson
  • Dec 3 Panglima Polim surrenders to Capt Colijn at Atjeh
  • Dec 6 Sumatra Atjehs guerilla leader Panglima Polim surrenders
  • Dec 9 Norwegian parliament votes unanimiously for female suffrage

Nobel Prize

Dec 10 Nobel Prize for physics awarded to Pierre and Marie Curie for their study of spontaneous radiation

  • Dec 11 British forces under MacDonald & Younghusband march into Tibet
  • Dec 12 Roger Casement completes report about abuses in Belgian Congo
  • Dec 14 Reg Foster completes 287 England v Australia on his Test Cricket debut
  • Dec 14 The Wright brothers attempt to fly the Wright Flyer for the first time at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina
  • Dec 15 NY Wall Street vendor Italo Marchiony [Marcioni] granted patent for a mound for making ice cream cones
  • Dec 16 Majestic Theater, NYC, becomes 1st in US to employ women ushers
  • Dec 16 The Taj Mahal Palace & Tower hotel opens its doors to guests for the first time

1st Airplane Flight

Dec 17 The Wright brothers make the 1st sustained motorized aircraft flight at 10:35 AM, piloted by Orville Wright at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina

  • Dec 19 Williamsburg suspension bridge opens between Brooklyn and Manhattan
  • Dec 27 "Sweet Adeline", a barbershop quartet favorite, is first sung

Theater Premiere

Dec 28 Clyde Fitch's play "Glad of It" premieres in NYC

  • Dec 29 French Equatorial Africa separates into Gabon, Chad and Ubangi-Shari
  • Dec 30 Electric arc lamp sets fire to Iroquois theater in Chicago leaving 602 dead in one of the deadliest blazes in American history
  • Dec 30 American Political Science Association founded at New Orleans