Today is Tuesday, Dec. 21, the 355th day of 2021. There are 10 days left in the year. Winter arrives at 10:59 a.m. Eastern Standard Time.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On Dec. 21, 1988, 270 people were killed when a terrorist bomb exploded aboard a Pam Am Boeing 747 over Lockerbie, Scotland, sending wreckage crashing to the ground.
On this date:
In 1620, Pilgrims aboard the Mayflower went ashore for the first time at present-day Plymouth, Massachusetts.
In 1864, during the Civil War, Union forces led by Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman concluded their “March to the Sea” as they captured Savannah, Georgia.
In 1891, the first basketball game, devised by James Naismith, is believed to have been played at the International YMCA Training School in Springfield, Massachusetts. (The final score of this experimental game: 1-0.)
In 1945, U.S. Army Gen. George S. Patton, 60, died in Heidelberg, Germany, 12 days after being seriously injured in a car accident.
In 1968, Apollo 8 was launched on a mission to orbit the moon.
In 1969, Vince Lombardi coached his last football game as his team, the Washington Redskins, lost to the Dallas Cowboys, 20-10.
In 1976, the Liberian-registered tanker Argo Merchant broke apart near Nantucket Island off Massachusetts almost a week after running aground, spilling 7.5 million gallons of oil into the North Atlantic.
In 1995, the city of Bethlehem passed from Israeli to Palestinian control.
In 2012, the National Rifle Association said guns and police officers were needed in all American schools to stop the next killer “waiting in the wings,” taking a no-retreat stance in the face of growing calls for gun control after the Newtown, Connecticut, shootings that claimed the lives of 26 children and school staff.
Today’s Birthdays: Talk show host Phil Donahue is 86. Actor Jane Fonda is 84. Actor Samuel L. Jackson is 73. Movie producer Jeffrey Katzenberg is 71. International Tennis Hall of Famer Chris Evert is 67. Actor Jane Kaczmarek is 66. Country singer Lee Roy Parnell is 65. Former child actor Lisa Gerritsen is 64. Actor-comedian Ray Romano is 64. Former Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is 59. Actor Kiefer Sutherland is 55.