It happened on Christmas Day...

Published:

The following events happened on Dec. 25 (information for this story was received from past newspapers, as well as several websites):

337 - Earliest possible date that Christmas was celebrated.

352 - First definite date Christmas was celebrated.

1066 - William the Conqueror is crowned king of England.

1223 - St Francis of Assisi assembles 1st Nativity scene (Greccio, Italy).

1492 - Columbus' ship Santa Maria docks at Dominican Republic.

1621 - Gov William Bradford of Plymouth forbids game playing on Christmas.

1741 - Astronomer Anders Celcius introduces Centigrade temperature scale.

1758 - Halley's comet first sighted by Johann Georg Palitzsch during return.

1760 - Jupiter Hammon, NY slave, publishes poetry in "An Evening Throught."

1776 - Washington crosses Delaware, surprises and defeats 1,400 Hessians,

1818 - First known Christmas carol ("Silent Night, Holy Night") sung (Austria).

1818 - Handel's Messiah, has it United States premiere in Boston.

1821 - Clara Barton, founder of the Red Cross, is born in New Oxford, Mass.

1831 - Louisiana and Arkansas are the first states to observe Christmas as holiday.

1843 - 1st theatre matinee (Olympic Theatre, NYC).

1848 - New Haven Railroad opens.

1862 - 40,000 watch Union army men play baseball at Hilton Head, S.C.

1868 - Despite bitter opposition, President Andrew Johnson grants unconditional pardon to all persons involved in Southern rebellion (Civil War).

1888 - First indoor baseball game played at fairgrounds in Philadelphia.

1894 - First midwestern football team to play on west coast-- the University of Chicago defeats Stanford 24-4 at Palo Alto, Calif.

1896 - "Stars & Stripes Forever" is written by John Philip Sousa.

1914 - Legendary/unofficial "Christmas Truce" takes place (Brits & Germans).

1938 - George Cukor announces Vivien Leigh will play Scarlett O'Hara.

1939 - Montgomery Ward introduces Rudolph, the ninth reindeer.

1941 - On a radio show, Bing Crosby introduces Irving Berlin's song, "White Christmas."

1950 - Cleveland Browns beat LA Rams 30-28 in NFL championship game.

1950 - Dick Tracy marries Tess Truehart.

1950 - Coronation Stone, taken from Scone in Scotland by Edward I in 1296, stolen from Westminster Abbey and smuggled back to Scotland.

1958 - Alan Freed's Christmas Rock & Roll Spectacular opens.

1962 - Movie "To Kill A Mockingbird" debuted and starred Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch.

1963 - Walt Disney's "The Sword in the Stone" is released.

1964 - "Goldfinger" premieres in the United States.

1968 - Frank Borman's Christmas reading while orbiting the moon.

1983 - First live telecast of Christmas Parade.

1984 - NBA's Bernard King scores 60 points.

1990 - "Godfather III" premieres.

1990 - The first successful trial run of the system which would become the World Wide Web.

1991 - Gorbachev resigns as president of the USSR.

1996 - Young JonBenet Ramsey is murdered.

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