Monday, 15 December 2014

December 15, 2014

Born on this date
Happy Birthday, Rahim Jaffer!

225 years ago

Born on this date
Carlos Soublette
. President of Venezuela, 1837-1839, 1843-1847. General Soublette was a hero of the Venezuelan War of Independence. He died on February 11, 1870 at the age of 80.

150 years ago

In the U.S. Civil War, Union forces under Major General George Thomas almost completely destroyed the Army of Tennessee under Lieutenant General John Hood on the first day of the Battle of Nashville.

100 years ago

The Serbian Army recaptured Belgrade from the invading Austro-Hungarian Army.

A gas explosion at Mitsubishi Hōjō coal mine in Kyushu, Japan killed 687.

75 years ago

At the movies
Gone With the Wind premiered at Loew's Grand Theatre in Atlanta.

The 36 dead crew members of the German pocket battleship Admiral Graf Spee, killed in the Battle of the River Plate two days earlier, were buried with full military honours in the German cemetery in Montevideo. Uruguayan authorities, in accordance with international treaties, were allowing the Graf Spee to temporarily remain docked at Montevideo.

70 years ago

Died on this date
Glenn Miller, 40
. U.S. musician. Mr. Miller, a trombonist, was one of the most popular arrangers and bandleaders of the Swing Era, with the peak of his popularity coming from 1939-1943, with hit singles such as Moonlight Serenade; In the Mood; American Patrol; and Chattanooga Choo Choo. He joined the United States Army in 1942 and led the Army Air Force Band. Major Miller's plane disappeared while flying over the English Channel from Clapham to Paris, where the band was scheduled to play for American soldiers.

The U.S. Selective Service announced that manpower needs after February 1, 1945 could not be met by men in the 18-25 age bracket and that a larger proportion of older men would be taken after that time. A U.S. federal grand jury in Newark, New Jersey returned indictments charging Carl Emil Ludwig Krepper with conspiring to aid the eight Nazi saboteurs captured in the United States in 1942. British Prime Minister Winston Churchill backed Soviet demands for the part of Poland east of the Curzon Line, including Vilna and Lwow. U.S. troops in Germany reached the German border along a 17-mile front from the Vosges Mountains to the Rhine River. Soviet troops captured the Czech stronghold of Sahy after a five-day battle. Chinese troops in Burma captured Bhamo after the failure of an attempt by the Japanese garrison to fight its way south along the Irrawaddy River. U.S. forces in the Philippines landed on Mindoro Island without any losses.

The United States Senate voted the new five-star rank to Army Generals Douglas MacArthur, Dwight Eisenhower, and Hap Arnold, and to Navy Admirals Leahy, King, and Chester Nimitz.

The U.S. National War Labor Board notified Montgomery Ward to comply with its orders in Chicago, Denver, St. Paul, Minnesota, San Rafael, California, and Jamaica, New York by December 18.

60 years ago

On television tonight
Disneyland, on ABC
Tonight's episode: Davy Crockett, Indian Fighter, starring Fess Parker

This was the first of five episodes starring Mr. Parker as Davy Crockett, sparking a national Davy Crockett craze in the United States.

The Charter for the Kingdom of the Netherlands was signed by Queen Juliana.

50 years ago

On television tonight
The Fugitive, starring David Janssen, on ABC
Tonight's episode: The Iron Maiden, with guest stars Stephen McNally, Nan Martin, and Richard Anderson

At the movies
Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte, starring Bette Davis, Olivia de Havilland, and Joseph Cotten, opened in theatres.

The album Beatles '65 by the Beatles was released in North America on Capitol Records.

Italy's first satellite, San Marco 1, was launched into Earth orbit from Wallops Island, Virginia. Its mission was to measure air density and investigate characteristics of the ionosphere.

The Canadian House of Commons voted 163-78 to adopt a new national flag based on a Royal Military College design suggested by George Stanley. The vote took place at 2 A.M., after closure had been invoked on December 14, and a total of 250 speeches had been made in the House.

40 years ago

At the movies
Young Frankenstein, directed by Mel Brooks and starring Gene Wilder, Peter Boyle, and Marty Feldman, opened in theatres.

Died on this date
Anatole Litvak, 72
. Russian-born film director. Mr. Litvak, native of Kiev when Ukraine was part of the Russian Empire, fled to Berlin in 1925, and then to Paris after the Nazi takeover of Germany, before moving to Hollywood. His movies included Mayerling (1936); Confessions of a Nazi Spy (1939); This Above All (1942); The Battle of Russia (1943); Sorry, Wrong Number (1948); The Snake Pit (1948); Decision Before Dawn (1951); and Anastasia (1956).

In order to save fuel, the British government of Prime Minister Harold Wilson imposed new speed limits, reducing maximum speeds on dual carriageways to 60 miles per hour and most other roads to 50 mph from a previous limit of 70 mph.

Buffalo (9-5) 14 @ Los Angeles (10-4) 19
Chicago (4-10) 0 @ Washington (10-4) 42
Cleveland (4-10) 24 @ Houston (7-7) 28
Denver (7-6-1) 0 @ San Diego (5-9) 17
Detroit (7-7) 17 @ Philadelphia (7-7) 28
Green Bay (6-8) 3 @ Atlanta (3-11) 10
New England (7-7) 27 @ Miami (11-3) 34
New Orleans (5-9) 21 @ San Francisco (6-8) 35
New York Giants (2-12) 14 @ St. Louis (10-4) 26
New York Jets (7-7) 45 @ Baltimore (2-12) 38

Defensive end Deacon Jones, playing the last regular season game of his 14-year career, converted the Redskins' last touchdown in their rout of the Bears at Robert F. Kennedy Stadium. It was the only point Mr. Jones ever scored in the NFL. Rookie Joe Barnes finished the game at quarterback for Chicago.

There were 48,830 empty seats at Atlanta Stadium for the Falcons' win over the Bears.

Arbitrator Peter Seitz announced that pitcher Catfish Hunter was a free agent because Oakland Athletics' owner Charlie Finley had not made deferred payments in accordance with Mr. Hunter's contract. Mr. Hunter had been with the Athletics since 1965, and had won 25 games in 1974 in helping the team to its third straight World Series championship.

30 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Italy (FIMI): I Just Called To Say I Love You--Stevie Wonder (6th week at #1)

#1 single in Flanders (VRT Top 30): When The Rain Begins To Fall--Jermaine Jackson and Pia Zadora (3rd week at #1)

#1 single in the Netherlands (De Nederlandse Top 40): When The Rain Begins To Fall--Jermaine Jackson and Pia Zadora (3rd week at #1)

#1 single in Ireland (IRMA): I Should Have Known Better--Jim Diamond (3rd week at #1)

#1 single in the U.K.: Do They Know it's Christmas?--Band Aid

#1 single in the U.S.A. (Billboard): Out of Touch--Daryl Hall John Oates (2nd week at #1)

U.S.A. top 10 (Cash Box)
1 The Wild Boys--Duran Duran
2 I Feel for You--Chaka Khan
3 Out of Touch--Daryl Hall John Oates
4 Like a Virgin--Madonna
5 Wake Me Up Before You Go Go--Wham!
6 Cool it Now--New Edition
7 Sea of Love--The Honeydrippers
8 We Belong--Pat Benatar
9 Strut--Sheena Easton
10 Better Be Good to Me--Tina Turner

Singles entering the chart were I Would Die 4 U by Prince and the Revolution (#46); Method of Modern Love by Daryl Hall John Oates (#55); Mistake No. 3 by Culture Club (#59); Make No Mistake, He's Mine by Barbra Streisand (with Kim Carnes) (#68); All Right Now by Rod Stewart (#86); Lonely School by Tommy Shaw (#88); 20/20 by George Benson (#89); and Eye on You by Billy Squier (#90).

Canada's top 10 (RPM)
1 Caribbean Queen (No More Love on the Run)--Billy Ocean (2nd week at #1)
2 The Wild Boys--Duran Duran
3 I Just Called to Say I Love You--Stevie Wonder
4 Wake Me Up Before You Go Go--Wham!
5 Out of Touch--Daryl Hall John Oates
6 Sea of Love--The Honeydrippers
7 All Through the Night--Cyndi Lauper
8 Strut--Sheena Easton
9 I Feel for You--Chaka Khan
10 No More Lonely Nights--Paul McCartney

Singles entering the chart were You're the Inspiration by Chicago (#90); All I Need by Jack Wagner (#93); Cool it Now by New Edition (#94); If I Had a Rocket Launcher by Bruce Cockburn (#95); Madam Butterfly by Malcolm McLaren (#96); and Tenderness by General Public (#97).

Died on this date
Jan Peerce, 80
. U.S. singer. Mr. Peerce, born Joshua Pincus Perelmuth, was an operatic tenor whose career on stage and in the recording studio spanned 50 years.

25 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in New Zealand (RIANZ): Escaping--Margaret Urlich (3rd week at #1)

#1 single in West Germany (Media Control): Another Day in Paradise--Phil Collins (3rd week at #1)

Died on this date
Arnold Moss, 79
. U.S. actor. Mr. Moss was a character actor in films, television, and radio. His movies included My Favorite Spy (1951); Viva Zapata! (1952); and Casanova's Big Night (1954). He made frequent appearances on the television series Suspense (1949-1954).

U.S. President George Bush sent American military forces into Panama, and they engaged in a brief but bloody conflict with troops supporting Panamanian dictator General Manuel Noriega. Panama’s National Assembly of Representatives formally named Gen. Noriega head of government and also proclaimed that Panama "is declared to be in a state of war" with the United States.

In Timisoara, Transylvania, Romania, a crowd formed to protest the arrest and deportation of a Protestant minister who had been advocating the rights of ethnic Hungarians who lived in the region.

Economics and finance
The United States Labor Department reported that producer prices had fallen 0.1% in November. The Commerce Department reported that the U.S. merchandise trade deficit had jumped to $10.2 billion in October.

300 Colombian commandos and soldiers attacked a ranch near Tolu, where they killed Jose Gonzalo Rodriguez Gacha, the number two man in the Medellin drug cartel. His son and 15 bodyguards were also killed. Mr. Rodriguez Gacha was one of those believed responsible for acts of terrorism and the killing of several prominent Colombians.

20 years ago

Hit parade
#1 single in Finland (Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland): Old Pop in an Oak--Rednex (2nd week at #1)

Palau became a member of the United Nations.

Politics and government
The Irish parliament elected Fine Gael leader John Bruton as the country's new Prime Minister.

The day after the Northern League deserted Italy's ruling coalition, Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi asked parliament for a vote of confidence.

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) declared the 1-million hectare Tatshenshini-Alsek wilderness in the northwest corner of British Columbia as a world heritage site, along with adjacent wilderness preserves in Alaska and the Yukon, amounting to the world's largest site, with a total of 8.5 million hectares.

British runner Diane Modahl pledged to prove her innocence after being found guilty by a British Athletic Federation panel of taking a banned performance-enhancing drug.

10 years ago

British Home Secretary David Blunkett resigned amid accusations that he had used his position to fast-track a visa application for his former lover's nanny.

American telecommunications companies Sprint Corporation and Nextel Communications Incorporated announced that they would merge in a $35-billion deal.

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