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Ugly Christmas Sweater Day-KALW Almanac-12/18/2015

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  • 352nd Day of 2015 13 Remaining
  • Winter Begins in 3 Days
  • Sunrise: 7:20
  • Sunset: 4:53
  • 9 Hours 33 Minutes
  • Moon Rise: 12:21pm
  • Moon Set: 12:50am(Sautrday)
  • Phase: First Quarter
  • Next Full Moon December 25 @ 3:11am
  • The Full Cold Moon; or the Full Long Nights Moon – December During this month the winter cold fastens its grip, and nights are at their longest and darkest. It is also sometimes called the Moon before Yule. The term Long Night Moon is a doubly appropriate name because the midwinter night is indeed long, and because the Moon is above the horizon for a long time. The midwinter full Moon has a high trajectory across the sky because it is opposite a low Sun.
  • Tides
  • High: 4:22am/4:16pm
  • Low: 10:40am/10:19pm
  • Holidays
  • National Ugly Christmas Sweater Day
  • Bake Cookies Day
  • Flake Appreciation Day
  • Free Shipping Day
  • National Ham Salad Day
  • National Roast Suckling Pig Day
  • Underdog Day
  • Arabic Language Day
  •  
  • International Migrants Day
  • Republic Day-Niger
  • Las Posadas-Mexico
  • On This Day
  • 1620 --- The British ship Mayflower docked at modern-day Plymouth, Massachusetts, and its passengers prepared to begin their new settlement, Plymouth Colony. On November 11, 1620, the Mayflower anchored at what is now Provincetown Harbor, Cape Cod. Before going ashore, 41 male passengers–heads of families, single men and three male servants–signed the famous Mayflower Compact, agreeing to submit to a government chosen by common consent and to obey all laws made for the good of the colony. Over the next month, several small scouting groups were sent ashore to collect firewood and scout out a good place to build a settlement. Around December 10, one of these groups found a harbor they liked on the western side of Cape Cod Bay. They returned to the Mayflower to tell the other passengers, but bad weather prevented them from docking until December 18. After exploring the region, the settlers chose a cleared area previously occupied by members of a local Native American tribe, the Wampanoag. The tribe had abandoned the village several years earlier, after an outbreak of European disease. That winter of 1620-1621 was brutal, as the Pilgrims struggled to build their settlement, find food and ward off sickness. By spring, 50 of the original 102 Mayflower passengers were dead.
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  • 1865 --- U.S. Secretary of State William Seward issued a statement verifying the ratification of the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The amendment abolished slavery with the declaration: "Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction." 
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  • 1878 --- John Kehoe, the last of the Molly Maguires, is executed in Pennsylvania. The Molly Maguires, an Irish secret society that had allegedly been responsible for some incidences of vigilante justice in the coalfields of eastern Pennsylvania, defended their actions as attempts to protect exploited Irish-American workers. In fact, they are often regarded as one of the first organized labor groups.
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  • 1912 --- After three years of digging in the Piltdown gravel pit in Sussex, England, amateur archaeologist Charles Dawson announces the discovery of two skulls that appear to belong to a primitive hominid and ancestor of man, along with a canine tooth, a tool carved from an elephant’s tusk, and fossil teeth from a number of prehistoric animals. Despite muted criticism from a minority of paleontologists, the majority of the scientific community hailed the so-called Piltdown Man as the missing evolutionary link between ape and man. The remains were estimated to be up to a million years old. For the next decade, scientists heralded the finding of Eoanthropus dawsoni, or “Dawson’s Dawn-man” in Latin, as confirmation of Darwin’s still-controversial theory of human evolution. In the 1920s and ’30s, however, the Piltdown gravels were found to be much less ancient than believed, and other finds of human ancestors around the world seemed to call the authenticity of the Piltdown Man into question. In 1953, at an international congress of paleontologists, the Piltdown Man was first openly called a fraud.
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  • 1915 --- President Woodrow Wilson marries Edith Galt in Washington, D.C. The bride was 43 and the groom was 59. It was the second marriage for Wilson, whose first wife died the year before from a kidney ailment. Edith, who claimed to be directly descended from Pocahantas, was the wealthy widow of a jewelry-store owner and a member of Washington high society.
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  • 1941 --- Japanese troops land in Hong Kong and a slaughter ensues. A week of air raids over Hong Kong, a British crown colony, was followed up on December 17 with a visit paid by Japanese envoys to Sir Mark Young, the British governor of Hong Kong. The envoys’ message was simple: The British garrison there should simply surrender to the Japanese—resistance was futile. The envoys were sent home with the following retort: “The governor and commander in chief of Hong Kong declines absolutely to enter into negotiations for the surrender of Hong Kong…” The first wave of Japanese troops landed in Hong Kong with artillery fire for cover and the following order from their commander: “Take no prisoners.” Upon overrunning a volunteer antiaircraft battery, the Japanese invaders roped together the captured soldiers and proceeded to bayonet them to death. Even those who offered no resistance, such as the Royal Medical Corps, were led up a hill and killed.
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  • 1957 --- The Shippingport Atomic Power Station in Pennsylvania, the first civilian nuclear facility to generate electricity in the United States, went online. 
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  • 1961 --- The song that topped the Billboard pop chart on December 18, 1961, was an instant classic that went on to become one of the most successful pop songs of all time, yet its true originator saw only a tiny fraction of the song’s enormous profits. The story begins in Johannesburg, South Africa, where in 1938, a group of Zulu singers and dancers called Solomon Linda and the Evening Birds stepped into the first recording studio ever set up in sub-Saharan Africa and recorded a song called “Mbube”—Zulu for “the lion.”  “Mbube” was a regional hit, and it helped make Solomon Linda into a South African star. But the story might have ended there had a copy of the record not made its way to New York City in the early 1950s, where it was saved from the slush pile at Decca Records by the legendary folklorist Alan Lomax. Without actually hearing any of the records in a box sent from Africa, Lomax thought a friend of his might be interested in the box’s contents. That friend was the folksinger Pete Seeger. Unable to understand the lyrics of “Mbube,” Seeger transcribed the central chant as “Wimoweh,” and that became the name of the song as recorded by the Weavers and released in early 1952, just as the group was about to be blacklisted thanks to the McCarthy hearings. Eventually, Jay Siegel, the teenage lead singer of the Tokens, would hear and fall in love with “Wimoweh” through the Kingston Trio’s cover version of the Weavers’ song. The Tokens’ label commissioned English-language lyrics for the song, which was re-titled “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” and went on to become not just a #1 song on this day in 1961, but one of the most-covered, most successful pop songs of all time.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LBmUwi6mEo
  • 1965 --- 'Taste Of Honey' by Herb Alpert & Tijuana Brass is #1 on the charts.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ippK3VCHino
  • 1965 --- "To Tell the Truth" debuted on CBS-TV. 
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  • 1968 --- The musical film “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” opens in New York City. The movie featured Dick Van Dyke, who had made a splash four years before in the Disney musical “Mary Poppins” and whose eponymous TV show had been a hit since 1961. Its real star, however, was Chitty Chitty Bang Bang herself: a magical flying car that always knew how to save the day.
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  • 1969 --- Britain's Parliament abolished the death penalty for murder.
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  • 1972 --- Following the breakdown of peace talks with North Vietnam just a few days earlier, President Richard Nixon announces the beginning of a massive bombing campaign to break the stalemate. For nearly two weeks, American bombers pounded North Vietnam. On December 13, peace talks between the United States and North Vietnam collapsed. The North Vietnamese and American negotiators traded charges and countercharges as to who was to blame. Infuriated, President Nixon ordered plans drawn up for retaliatory bombings of North Vietnam. Linebacker II was the result. Beginning on December 18, American B-52s and fighter-bombers dropped over 20,000 tons of bombs on the cities of Hanoi and Haiphong.
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  • 1982 --- A power plant fire begins in Venezuela on this day in 1982. By the time it ended, the fire killed 128 people and injured hundreds more. Half the capital city of Caracas lost electrical power and 40,000 people had to be evacuated. The large Tacoa power plant on the outskirts of Caracas was going through the process of checking and maintaining its gauges on the night of December 18 when a fire broke out in Tank 8, which was filled with No.6 fuel oil. It could not be put out immediately because the water supply didn’t work. Instead, it raged on into the night and, early the next morning, caused a huge explosion. The explosion was particularly deadly because spectators from the village below the plant had gathered to watch the fire. To make matters worse, the superheated flaming oil poured down the hillside toward a village.
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  • 1982 --- 'Maneater' by Daryl Hall and John Oates was #1 on the music charts.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yRYFKcMa_Ek
  • 1987 --- Ivan F. Boesky was sentenced to three years in prison for plotting Wall Street's biggest insider-trading scandal.
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  • 2003 --- In Santa Maria, CA, Michael Jackson was charged with seven counts of molesting a child under 14 and two counts of supplying the child with "an intoxicating agent." Jackson's lawyer denounced the allegations and said they were driven by money and revenge.
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  • Birthdays
  • Keith Richards
  • Steven Spielberg
  • Gillian Armstrong
  • Leonard Maltin
  • Martha Johnson
  • Ray Liotta
  • Brad Pitt
  • DMX
  • Katie Holmes
  • Jacques Pepin
  • Ty Cobb
  • Christina Aguilera
  • Willy Brandt
  • Betty Grable
  • Paul Klee
  • Ossie Davis
  • HH Munro
  • Robert Moses