World Bulletin / News Desk
376 In Milan, Ambrose, the Bishop of Milan, forces the emperor Theodosius to perform public penance for his massacre.
800 The pope crowns Charlemagne emperor in Rome.
1066 William I is crowned king of England.
1621 The governor of New Plymouth prevents newcomers from playing cards.
1651 The General Court of Boston levies a five shilling fine on anyone caught "observing any such day as Christmas."
1776 Patriot General George Washington crosses the Delaware River with 5,400 troops during the American Revolution. Washington hoped to surprise a Hessian force celebrating Christmas at their winter quarters in Trenton, New Jersey.
1861 Stonewall Jackson spends Christmas with his wife; their last together.
1862 John Hunt Morgan and his raiders clash with Union forces near Bear Wallow, Kentucky.
1862 President and Mrs. Lincoln visit hospitals in the Washington D.C. area on this Christmas Day.
1912 Italy lands troops in Albania to protect its interests during a revolt there.
1914 German and British troops on the Western Front declare an unofficial truce to celebrate Christmas during World War I.
1918 A revolt erupts in Berlin.
1925 U.S. troops in Nicaragua disarm insurgents in support of the Diaz regime.
1927 The Mexican congress opens land to foreign investors, reversing the 1917 ban enacted to preserve the domestic economy.
1939 Finnish troops enter Soviet territory.
1941 Free French troops occupy the French Islands of St. Pierre and Miquelon off the Canadian coast.
1944 Prime Minister Winston Churchill goes to Athens to seek an end to the Greek civil war.
1946 Chiang Kai-shek offers a new Chinese constitution in Nanking pledging universal suffrage.
1950 Scottish nationalists steal the Stone of Scone from the British coronation throne in Westminster Abbey. The 485 pound stone was recovered in April 1951.
1962 The Bay of Pigs captives, upon their return to the United States, vow to return to Cuba and topple Fidel Castro.
1965 Entertainer Chris Noel gives her first performance for the USO at two hospitals in California; became a star on Armed Forces Radio and Television, entertaining troops in Vietnam; in 1984 Veterans Network honored her with a Distinguished Vietnam Veteran award.
1973 U.S. astronauts onboard the Skylab space station take a seven-hour walk in space and photograph the comet Kohoutek.
1976 Over 100 Muslims, returning from a pilgrimage to Mecca, die when their boat sinks.
1979 Egypt begins major restoration of the Sphinx.
1991 Mikhail Gorbachev, the Soviet Union's first and last executive president, resigns. The Soviet Union no longer exsists.
2006 James Brown, the "Godfather of Soul", dies at age 73.
A chronological timetable of historical events that occurred on this day in history.