Historical Events in December 1981

Sports History

Dec 1 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar passes Oscar Robertson (26,710) to become the NBA’s second all-time leading scorer behind Wilt Chamberlain; scores 14 points in 117-86 Lakers' win over Utah Jazz in Los Angeles

  • Dec 1 Yugoslavian charter flight crashes into Mont San-Pietro in Corsica, 180 killed
  • Dec 2 Moscone Convention Center, San Francisco, opens at 11:30 AM

Sports History

Dec 2 Pitcher Fernando Valenzuela becomes 3rd consecutive LA Dodgers player to be named National League Rookie of the Year; Rick Sutcliffe 1979, Steve Howe 1980

  • Dec 2 Spanish government requests membership of NATO
  • Dec 3 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • Dec 4 "Falcon Crest" premieres on CBS-TV
  • Dec 4 According to South Africa, Ciskei gains independence. Not recognized as an independent country outside South Africa.

Historic Event

Dec 4 Reagan Executive Order on Intelligence (No 12333) that allows CIA to engage in domestic counter-intelligence

  • Dec 5 47th Heisman Trophy Award: Marcus Allen, Southern Cal (RB)
  • Dec 5 France performs nuclear test

Sports History

Dec 6 PGA Seniors' Championship Men's Golf, Turnberry Isle CC: Miller Barber wins his first of 5 Champions Tour major titles by 2 strokes from Arnold Palmer

  • Dec 6 Rob de Castella of Australia sets Marathon record at 2:08:18
  • Dec 7 Spain becomes a member of the NATO
  • Dec 8 France performs nuclear test
  • Dec 9 Porn star John Holmes charged with Laurel Canyon murders
  • Dec 10 -13] El Salvador army kills 900
  • Dec 10 Jules Feiffer's "Grownups" premieres in NYC
  • Dec 10 The United Nations General Assembly approves Pakistan's proposal for establishing nuclear free-zone in South Asia.
  • Dec 11 Argentine President General Roberto Viola flees
  • Dec 11 El Mozote massacre: Salvadoran armed forces kill an estimated 900 civilians in an anti-guerrilla campaign during the country's civil war.

Boxing Title Fight

Dec 11 Former world heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali's 61st and last fight; loses to Trevor Berbick by unanimous decision in 10 rounds at Queen Elizabeth Sports Centre, Nassau, Bahamas

  • Dec 11 Spacelab I arrives at Kennedy Space Center
  • Dec 11 UN Security Council chooses Javier Pérez de Cuélla of Peru as the 5th Secretary-General of the United Nations
  • Dec 11 Wash Capitals biggest margin of victory (9) beating Toronto 11-2
  • Dec 12 "1st" closes at Martin Beck Theater NYC after 37 performances
  • Dec 12 Gambia & Senegal sign agreement to be known as Senegambia in Feb 1982
  • Dec 13 70th Davis Cup: USA beats Argentina in Cincinnati (3-1)
  • Dec 13 Poland's authoritarian communist government declares martial law and arrests Solidarity activists in a failed attempt to crush the opposition
  • Dec 14 Israel annexes Golan Heights (seized from Syria in war of 1967)
  • Dec 15 NASA launches Intelsat V satellite, no. 503
  • Dec 16 Dutch Van Agt's 2nd government falls
  • Dec 17 Members of Red Brigades kidnap Brigadier General James L Dozier
  • Dec 19 Romuald Spasowski, Polish ambassador to the United States defects to show support for the Solidarity movement amid a crackdown
  • Dec 19 Sixteen lives are lost when the Penlee, Cornwall, lifeboat goes to the aid of the stricken coaster Union Star in heavy seas.
  • Dec 20 Browns set team records for most fumbles (9) & most turnovers (10)
  • Dec 20 Harry Krieger and Tom Eyen's musical "Dreamgirls" opens at Imperial Theater, NYC; runs for 1522 performances, wins 6 Tony, 5 Drama Desk, and 2 Grammy Awards
  • Dec 20 Winnipeg left wing Doug Smail sets NHL record by scoring just 4 seconds into Jets' 5-4 win over the St Louis Blues; fastest goal from opening face-off to back of net in history; later tied by Bryan Trottier and Alex Mogilny
  • Dec 21 Cincinnati beats Bradley 75-73 in 7 OTs (NCAA record)

Historic Event

Dec 22 Argentine general Leopoldo Galtieri sworn in as military dictator and President of Argentina

  • Dec 22 Belgium's 5th government of Martens forms
  • Dec 23 Geoffrey Boycott becomes leading run-scorer in Test Cricket with 8033
  • Dec 24 USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR
  • Dec 26 One of the great day's Test Cricket at the MCG Australia v West Indies
  • Dec 27 Lillee becomes the leading wicket-taker in test cricket with 310

Sports History

Dec 27 Oiler Wayne Gretzky becomes fastest NHLer to get 100 pts (38th game)

  • Dec 27 USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR
  • Dec 28 1st American test-tube baby, Elizabeth Jordan Carr is born in Norfolk, Virginia
  • Dec 28 Cleveland Metroparks Administrative offices move from downtown to Zoo (Cleveland, Ohio)
  • Dec 28 Warner-Elektra-Atlantic raises price of 45 records from $1.68 to $1.98
  • Dec 29 Ballon d'Or: German 1-2-3 with Bayern Munich forward Karl-Heinz Rummenigge taking title of Europe's best football player for the 2nd straight year; beats teammate Paul Breitner and Barcelona midfielder Bernd Schuster

Music Single

Dec 30 "That Girl" single released by Stevie Wonder (Billboard Song of the Year -1982)

  • Dec 30 Wayne Gretzky scores 5 goals and an assist in Edmonton's 7-5 win over Philadelphia; gives Gretzky 50 goals in 39 games, the fastest 50 in 50 in NHL history; also sets NHL record with 15-game assist streak
  • Dec 31 CNN Headline News debuts
  • Dec 31 Lt Jerry Rawlings becomes head of Ghana, suspends constitution
  • Dec 31 Netherlands unemployment stands at record 475,000