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On December fourth, 1783, General
George Washington bade farewell to his officers
at Fraunces Tavern in New York.
On this date:
In 1816, James Monroe of Virginia was elected the
fifth president of the United States.
In 1839, the Whig
Party opened a national convention in Harrisburg,
Pennsylvania, during which delegates nominated
William Henry Harrison for president.
In 1918, President
Wilson set sail for France to attend the
Versailles Peace Conference.
In 1942, President
Roosevelt ordered the dismantling of the Works
Progress Administration, which had been created
to provide jobs during the Depression.
In 1942, US
bombers struck the Italian mainland for the first
time in World War Two.
In 1945, the
Senate approved US participation in the United
In 1965, the
United States launched "Gemini Seven"
with Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Frank Borman
and Navy Commander James A. Lovell aboard.
In 1978, San
Francisco got its first female mayor as City
Supervisor Dianne Feinstein was named to replace
the assassinated George Moscone.
In 1980, the
bodies of four American churchwomen slain in El
Salvador two days earlier were unearthed. (Five
national guardsmen were later convicted of
murdering nuns Ita Ford, Maura Clarke and Dorothy
Kazel, and lay worker Jean Donovan.)
In 1996, the Mars
Pathfinder lifted off from Cape Canaveral and
began speeding toward Mars on a 310 million-mile
odyssey to explore the Red Planet's surface.
Ten years ago:
President Bush briefed NATO leaders in Brussels,
Belgium, on the just-concluded Malta summit he'd
held with Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev.
Five years ago:
Bosnian Serbs released 53 out of some
four-hundred UN peacekeepers they were holding as
insurance against further NATO airstrikes.
One year ago:
Space shuttle "Endeavour" and a crew of
six blasted off on the first mission to begin
assembling the international space station.
"People who have
what they want are fond of telling people who
haven't what they want that they really don't
Ogden Nash, American humorist and poet