Today is Saturday, December 4, the 338th day of 2021. There are 27 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlights in History:
On December 4, 1942, during World War II, American bombers first struck the Italian mainland in a raid on Naples. President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered the dismantling of the Works Progress Administration, which had been created to provide jobs during the Depression.
To this date :
In 1783, General George Washington bade farewell to his Continental Army officers at Fraunces Tavern in New York.
In 1918, President Woodrow Wilson left Washington for a trip to France to attend the Versailles Peace Conference.
In 1954, the first Burger King stand was opened in Miami by James McLamore and David Edgerton.
In 1956, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins got together for the first and only time for a jam session at Sun Records in Memphis.
In 1965, the United States launched Gemini 7 with Air Force Lt. Col. Frank Borman and Navy Cmdr. James A. Lovell on board for a two week mission. (While Gemini 7 was in orbit, its sister ship, Gemini 6A, launched on December 15 for a one-day mission; the two spacecraft were able to meet within a foot of either other.)
In 1967, actor-comedian Bert Lahr, who played the Cowardly Lion in “The Wizard of Oz”, died in New York City at the age of 72.
In 1978, San Francisco had its first female mayor as city supervisor, Dianne Feinstein, was appointed to replace the assassinated George Moscone.
In 1980, the bodies of four American clergymen killed in El Salvador two days earlier were exhumed. (Five Salvadoran National Guardsmen were subsequently convicted of the murder of nuns Ita Ford, Maura Clarke and Dorothy Kazel, and lay worker Jean Donovan.)
In 1986, both houses of Congress decided to create special committees to conduct their own investigations into the Iran-Contra affair.
In 1992, President George HW Bush ordered US troops to lead a mercy mission in Somalia, threatening military action against warlords and gangs blocking food for millions of starving people.
In 2000, in a pair of legal setbacks for Al Gore, a Florida state judge refused to overturn George W. Bush’s certified victory in Florida, and the United States Supreme Court overturned a decision that had allowed manual recounts.
In 2018, long lines of people passed through the Capitol Rotunda to view the coffin of former President George HW Bush; former Senator Bob Dole stabilized out of his wheelchair to greet his old friend and former rival.
Ten years ago: Prime Minister Vladimir Putin’s party held on to its majority in parliamentary elections in Russia, but was accused by opponents of rigging the vote. Rafael Nadal recovered from a terrible start and beat Argentina’s Juan Martin del Potro 1-6, 6-4, 6-1, 7-6 (0) to give Spain their fifth Cup title Davis. After more than two years and 26 tournaments without a win, Tiger Woods won the Chevron World Challenge.
Five years ago: A North Carolina man with a rifle fired several shots inside Comet Ping Pong, a pizza place in Washington, DC, as he attempted to investigate a online conspiracy theory that prominent Democrats harbor child sex slaves in restaurants; no one was injured and the man surrendered to the police. (He was later sentenced to four years in prison.)
A year ago: The government reported that U.S. employers cut hiring in November as the viral pandemic accelerated, creating 245,000 jobs in the fifth consecutive monthly slowdown. Actor David L. Lander, best known for playing Squiggy in the popular ABC comedy “Laverne & Shirley”, has died at 73 after a decades-long battle with multiple sclerosis.
Today’s birthdays: Game show host Wink Martindale is 88 years old. Pop singer Freddy Cannon is 85 years old. Actor-producer Max Baer Jr. is 84 years old. Actor Gemma Jones is 79 years old. Rock musician Bob Mosley (Moby Grape) is 79 years old. Singer-musician Chris Hillman is 77 years old. Musician Terry Woods (The Pogues) is 74 years old. Southside rock singer Johnny Lyon is 73 years old. Actor Jeff Bridges is 72 years old. Rock musician Gary Rossington (Lynyrd Skynyrd; the Rossington Collins Band) is 70 years old. Actor Patricia Wettig is 70 years old. Actor Tony Todd is 67 years old. Jazz singer Cassandra Wilson is 66 years old. Country musician Brian Prout (Diamond Rio) is 66 years old. Rock musician Bob Griffin (formerly of The BoDeans) is 62. Rock singer Vinnie Dombroski (Sponge) is 59 years old. Actress Marisa Tomei is 57. Actor Chelsea Noble is 57 years old. Actor-comedian Fred Armisen is 55 years old. Rapper Jay-Z is 52 years old. Actor Kevin Sussman is 51 years old. Actor-model Tyra Banks is 48 years old. Country singer Lila McCann is 40 years old. Actor Lindsay Felton is 37 years old. Actor Orlando Brown is 34 years old. Actor Scarlett Estevez (TV: “Lucifer”) is 14 years old.