Today is Friday, Dec. 24, the 358th day of 2021. There are seven days left in the year. This is Christmas Eve.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On Dec. 24, 1943, President Franklin D. Roosevelt appointed Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower supreme commander of Allied forces in Europe as part of Operation Overlord.
On this date:
In 1524, Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama — who had discovered a sea route around Africa to India — died in Cochin, India.
In 1809, legendary American frontiersman Christopher “Kit” Carson was born in Madison County, Kentucky.
In 1814, the United States and Britain signed the Treaty of Ghent, which ended the War of 1812 following ratification by both the British Parliament and the U.S. Senate.
In 1851, fire devastated the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., destroying about 35,000 volumes.
In 1865, several veterans of the Confederate Army formed a private social club in Pulaski, Tennessee, that was the original version of the Ku Klux Klan.
In 1906, Canadian physicist Reginald A. Fessenden became the first person to transmit the human voice (his own) as well as music over radio, from Brant Rock, Massachusetts.
In 1913, 73 people, most of them children, died in a crush of panic after a false cry of “Fire!” during a Christmas party for striking miners and their families at the Italian Hall in Calumet, Michigan.
In 1980, Americans remembered the U.S. hostages in Iran by burning candles or shining lights for 417 seconds — one second for each day of captivity.
In 1992, President Bush pardoned former Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger and five others in the Iran-Contra scandal.
In 1993, the Rev. Norman Vincent Peale, who blended Christian and psychiatric principles into a message of “positive thinking,” died in Pawling, New York, at age 95.
Today’s Birthdays: Dr. Anthony Fauci is 81. Recording company executive Mike Curb is 77. Actor Sharon Farrell is 75. Former U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is 75. Actor Diedrich Bader is 55. Singer Ricky Martin is 50. TV personality Ryan Seacrest (TV: “Live With Kelly & Ryan”) is 47. Rock singer Louis Tomlinson (One Direction) is 30.