In 1776, Gen. George Washington and his troops crossed the Delaware River for a surprise attack against Hessian forces at Trenton, N.J.
In 1941, during World War II, Japan announced the surrender of the British-Canadian garrison at Hong Kong.
In A.D. 336, the first recorded celebration of Christmas on Dec. 25 took place in Rome.
In 1818, "Silent Night," written by Franz Gruber and Father Joseph Mohr, was performed for the first time, at the Church of St. Nikolaus in Oberndorf, Austria.
In 1997, comedian Jerry Seinfeld announced plans to fold his highly successful NBC sitcom "Seinfeld" at the end of that season.
In 1989, ousted Romanian President Nicolae Ceausescu and his wife, Elena, were executed following a popular uprising.
In 2002, a major storm made for a white Christmas in parts of the United States; the severe weather ultimately was blamed for some two dozen deaths.
In 1991, Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev went on television to announce his resignation as the eighth and final leader of a communist superpower that had already gone out of existence.
In 1997, Richard Bliss, a field technician for Qualcomm Inc. accused of spying in Russia, arrived in San Diego after Russian authorities were persuaded to let him return home.
In 2002, Pope John Paul II delivered a Christmas message in which he said war had to be and could be avoided even in a world made fearful by terrorism.
In 2006, Pope Benedict XVI used his Christmas Day address to call for a peaceful resolution of conflicts worldwide and appealed for greater caring of the poor, the exploited and all who suffer.
In 1946, comedian W.C. Fields died in Pasadena, Calif., at age 66.
In 1977, comedian Sir Charles Chaplin died in Switzerland at age 88.
In 2006, James Brown, the "Godfather of Soul," died of heart failure in Atlanta at age 73.
Singer Tony Martin is 94. Actor Dick Miller is 79. Actress Hanna Schygulla is 64. Rhythm-and-blues singer John Edwards (The Spinners) is 63. Actor Gary Sandy is 62. Singer Jimmy Buffett is 61. Football Hall-of-Famer Larry Csonka is 61. Country singer Barbara Mandrell is 59. Actress Sissy Spacek is 58. Actress CCH Pounder is 55. Singer Annie Lennox is 53. Reggae singer-musician Robin Campbell (UB40) is 53. Country singer Steve Wariner is 53. Singer Shane MacGowan is 50. Actress Klea Scott is 39. Rock musician Noel Hogan (The Cranberries) is 36. Singer Dido is 36. Rock singer Mac Powell (Third Day) is 35. Country singer Alecia Elliott is 25.
Dec. 25, the 359th day of 2007. There are six days left in the year. This is Christmas Day.
compiled by Mondoreb
Source: Today in History
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