Events in History on December 13

  • 1294 Saint Celestine V abdicates the papacy after only five months; Celestine hoped to return to his previous life as an ascetic hermit.
  • 1355 The greatest traveller of his age, Ibn Battuta of Tangier completes his work "The Travels" detailing his 29 years spent travelling the Islamic world and beyond, including to India, China and Indonesia

Historic Event

1545 Council of Trent (19th ecumenical council) opened by Pope Paul III

  • 1570 Sweden and Denmark signs Peace of Stettin
  • 1572 Spanish army beats Geuzen fleet (confederacy of Calvinist Dutch nobles) under admiral Lumey

Francis Drake's Circumnavigation

1577 Francis Drake sets sail from England on an epic three year circumnavigation of the world aboard the 'Pelican' (later renamed the 'Golden Hind')

Historic Event

1621 Emperor Ferdinand II delegates 1st anti-Reformation decree

  • 1636 The Massachusetts Bay Colony organizes three militia regiments to defend the colony against the Pequot Indians. Recognized today as the founding of the United States National Guard.

Historic Discovery

1642 Dutch explorer Abel Tasman sights the South Island of present day New Zealand; initially he calls it Staten Landt and changes it a year later to Nieuw Zeeland [1]

  • 1643 English Civil War: The Battle of Alton takes place in Hampshire.

Historic Event

1668 Jean Racine's "Britannicus" premieres in Paris

  • 1732 Prussia joins Austria and Russia in signing the Treaty of Berlin, a secret treaty regarding succession to the Polish throne
  • 1734 Britain and Russia sign trade agreement
  • 1742 Willem KH Friso tests his mothers potatoes
  • 1769 Dartmouth College in New Hampshire receives its charter

Historic Event

1774 Paul Revere and Wentworth Cheswell ride to warn Portsmouth of the approach of British warships

  • 1816 Patent for a dry dock issued to John Adamson, Boston
  • 1861 Battle of Alleghany Summit, West Virginia
  • 1862 Battle of Fredericksburg, Virginia (Marye's Heights)
  • 1864 Battle of Fort McAllister, Georgia

Declaration of War

1864 War of the Triple Alliance: Paraguay officially declares war on Brazil, invades the next day

  • 1879 First federal fish hatching steamer launched (Wilmington, Delaware)
  • 1889 Belgium rules on women and child labor law
  • 1900 Battle of Nooitgedacht: Boer Generals De La Reyand Smuts defeat a British brigade under the command of Major General R. Clements

Historic Event

1902 British and German ships bombard Venezuelan forts after President Castro refuses to comply with ultimatum demanding damages caused during his takeover of the government in 1899; Castro asks US President Theodore Roosevelt to arbitrate

Historic Event

1906 German chancellor Bernhard von Bülow disbands the Parliament

  • 1907 George Gunn scores 119 on Test debut v Australia SCG

Historic Event

1907 German Emperor Wilhelm II visits Amsterdam

Historic Event

1913 British foreign minister Sir Edward Grey proposes that southern Albania be divided between Greece and Albania with compensation to Greece in the Aegean islands

  • 1916 Avalanche kills 10,000 Austrian and Italian troops in 24 hrs in Tyrol
  • 1916 Esme Stuart Lennox Robinsons premieres in Dublin
  • 1916 French chief of staff Joffre replaced by Nivelle
  • 1918 US army of occupation crosses Rhine, enters Germany
  • 1919 Ross & Smith land in Australia from a flight from London
  • 1920 Francis G. Pease's interferometer at Mount Wilson Observatory is the first to measure the diameter of a star - the Betelgeuse
  • 1920 Hans Riegel founds sweet company HARIBO ((HAns RIegel BOnn) in Bonn, Germany [1]
  • 1920 League of Nations establishes the International Court of Justice in The Hague
  • 1920 Netherland breaks contact with Kingdom of Serbia, Croatia and Slavia
  • 1922 Charles Ebbets proposes putting numbers on players' sleeves or caps
  • 1924 KOA-AM in Denver CO begins radio transmissions
  • 1928 Clip-on tie designed
  • 1930 French government of André Tardieu falls for the second time
  • 1930 Theodore Steeg forms French government
  • 1934 Mark Hellinger Theater (Warner Bros) opens at 237 W 51st St NYC
  • 1937 Japanese troops conquer and plunder Nanjing (Nanjing Massacre)
  • 1938 Los Angeles freezes at 28°F
  • 1939 Battle of the River Plate - 3 British cruisers vs German pocket battleship Graf Spee
  • 1941 German occupiers forbid National Front and Netherland Union
  • 1941 Lawine battlers destroy Haaraz, Peru; about 3,000 die
  • 1942 Seyss-Inquart allows Dutch Nazi Anton Mussert to call himself Leader
  • 1943 150 US Marauders bomb Schiphol
  • 1944 Japanese kamikaze crashes into US cruiser Nashville, kills 138
  • 1944 Norman Krasna's "Dear Ruth" premieres in NYC

Election of Interest

1946 Léon Blum elected French premier

  • 1947 Maine Turnpike opens to traffic
  • 1949 AL votes down proposal to revive spitball
  • 1949 Knesset votes to transfer Israel's capital to Jerusalem

Historic Event

1954 Elsa Schiaparelli's House of Schiaparelli at Place Vendôme in Paris closes

  • 1959 Archbishop Makarios elected 1st president of Cyprus
  • 1960 Laos General Fumi Nosavang occupies Vientiane
  • 1962 Relay 1 communication satellite launched

Historic Event

1964 In El Paso, Texas, LBJ & Mexican President Gustavo Diaz Ordaz set off an explosion diverting Rio Grande, to reshape US-Mexico border

  • 1965 Algerian president Boumedienne visits Moscow
  • 1966 1st battle for Bijlmer flats, Amsterdam
  • 1966 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • 1967 San Diego, CA records snow at a zero elevation after temperatures plunge 19 degrees (F) in eight hours.
  • 1967 United Soccer Association & National Pro Soccer League merge into NASL
  • 1967 Unsuccessful coup against Greek King Constantine II
  • 1968 Brazilian President Da Costa e Silva issues Ato Institucional Número Cinco degree
  • 1971 John Sinclair (sentence: 10 yrs, sold 2 marijuana joints) is freed
  • 1973 MPLA/FNLA accord about combat against Portuguese Libya
  • 1973 World Football League grants 1st franchise (Detroit)
  • 1974 Malta becomes a republic

Election of Interest

1975 Australian Federal Election - Liberals with coalition under Malcolm Fraser win largest ever parliamentary majority

  • 1975 USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR
  • 1976 Golden Gate Bridge District starts ferry service to Larkspur
  • 1976 Longest non-stop passenger airflight (Sydney to San Francisco 13h 14m)
  • 1979 Saudi Arabia raises marker crude price to $24 per barrel
  • 1979 Strikes against price increases in Gdańsk, Poland
  • 1981 Poland's authoritarian communist government declares martial law and arrests Solidarity activists in a failed attempt to crush the opposition
  • 1982 Earthquake hits Northern Yemen; 2,000 die
  • 1983 Islander's Butch Goring scorings 4 goals against Oilers
  • 1983 KYA-AM in San Francisco CA changes call letters to KOIT
  • 1983 Martha Layne Collins inaugurated as Kentucky's 1st female governor
  • 1984 Artificial heart recipient William Schroeder suffers 1st stroke
  • 1987 Belgium Christian Democrats (CVP) loses parliamentary election
  • 1987 Browns set club record for most points scored in a quarter, 28
  • 1987 USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR
  • 1988 3 men end 29-hr all-466-station subway ride in NYC

Historic Event

1988 Yasser Arafat addresses UN in Geneva

  • 1989 The last issue of Gnistan (The Spark), the organ of the Solidaritetspartiet, is published in Sweden
  • 1990 Heavy earthquake strikes Sicily, 18 die
  • 1990 US Secretary of State Baker questions Iraq's seriousness about Middle East peace
  • 1991 Both North and South Korea sign an accord calling for reconciliation
  • 1991 NY assembly speaker Mel Miller is convicted of federal mail fraud
  • 1992 FCC fines Infinity Broadcasting $600,000
  • 1993 Deadline for Israeli troop withdrawal from Gaza, they don't
  • 1993 Dow Jones hits record 3764.43
  • 1993 Fire in textile factory in Fuzjou China, 60 killed
  • 1993 Space shuttle STS-61 (Endeavour 5), lands
  • 1994 American Eagle commuter plane crashes in NC, killing 15
  • 1995 US Federal Court votes that Cable companies must carry local stations

Election of Interest

1996 Kofi Annan is elected Secretary-General of the United Nations

Historic Event

2000 American Vice President Al Gore delivers his concession speech effectively ending his hopes of becoming the 43rd President of the United States.

  • 2000 The "Texas 7" escape from the John Connally Unit near Kenedy, Texas later going on a crime spree and killing police officer Aubrey Hawkins
  • 2001 Indian Parliament Sansad attacked by terrorists. 15 people killed, including all terrorists
  • 2002 The European Union announces that Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia will become members from May 1, 2004

Historic Event

2003 Former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein is captured near his home town of Tikrit, during Operation Red Dawn by US forces

Historic Event

2004 Former Chilean dictator, General Augusto Pinochet is put under house arrest, after being sued under accusations over 9 kidnapping actions and manslaughter. The house arrest is lifted the same day on appeal.

  • 2006 The Baiji, or Chinese River Dolphin, announced as extinct.
  • 2012 A car bombing in Qatana, outside Damascus, kills 16 people and injures 12
  • 2012 Japan scrambles fighter jets in response to a Chinese plane in the Senkaku Islands dispute
  • 2012 Mosconi Cup nine-ball pool, London, England: Team Europe win for 3rd consecutive year beating US, 11-9; MVP: Chris Melling (England)
  • 2014 A civil rights protest march in Washington, D.C. takes place, against the police killing of unarmed black men
  • 2014 Divisions emerge between rich and poor nations at the UN climate change talks in Peru
  • 2014 Fatou Bensouda, the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, criticizes UN Security Council for its lack of action over war crimes in the Darfur region of Sudan
  • 2014 The British Government announces it will send hundreds of troops to Iraq, to train Iraqi and Kurdish forces in the conflict with Islamic State
  • 2014 Two US soldiers killed in a Taliban bombing of a NATO convoy in Kabul
  • 2016 UN claims 82 civilians have been summary executed in Aleppo by pro-government forces
  • 2017 Democratic Republic of Congo jails for life 11 militiamen for raping 40 children, including a local MP
  • 2017 Online dictionary Merriam-Webster's most searched word of the year is Feminism
  • 2017 Prehistoric bones of a penguin as tall as a human (1.77m) found on Otago beach, New Zealand, reported in "Nature Communications"

Important Vote

2017 Prime Minister Theresa May's UK Conservative government loses key vote in Parliament for an amendment to allow MPs to vote on Brexit

  • 2017 Scientists begin checking interstellar asteroid Oumuamua for signs of alien technology through radio signals (later studies conclude it a piece of sliced off planet)
  • 2018 Apple announces new $1 billion campus in Austin, Texas and expansion in other US cities
  • 2018 Cease-fire in port city of Hudaydah, Yemen, by Houthi rebels and Saudi-led coalition announced by the UN
  • 2018 Passenger train collides with maintenance locomotive in Ankara, Turkey, killing at least 9 and injuring 47
  • 2018 US Senate passes non-binding "war powers resolution" against long-term ally Saudi Arabia
  • 2020 Germany announces a strict lockdown till Jan 10 after looser restrictions failed to prevent COVID-19 numbers surging
  • 2021 1 in a 100 Americans aged over 65 has now died of COVID-19, or 75% of total deaths, according to the CDC [1]

Historic Event

2021 Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX and Tesla, named Time's Person of the Year

COVID-19 Pandemic

2021 First COVID-19 Omicron death in the UK reported by PM Boris Johnson

  • 2022 First nuclear fusion reaction in a laboratory setting, replicating the same energy that powers the sun - announced by scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, California [1]
  • 2022 New Zealand passes world's first tobacco ban, outlawing smoking for those born after 2009 [1]
  • 2022 Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of the collapsed cryptocurrency exchange FTX, is arrested in the Bahamas after US files criminal charges against him, including wire fraud and money laundering [1]

Historic Event

2022 US President Joe Biden signs the Respect for Marriage Act into law, mandating federal recognition of same-sex marriages in ceremony at the White House [1]