Dec. 12, 1776 - The British captured General Charles Lee in New Jersey. Lee was General George Washington's second-in-command.
Dec. 12, 1787 – Pennsylvania became the second state to ratify the United States Constitution, by a vote of 46 to 23, five days after Delaware became the first. Pennsylvania was the first large state to ratify, as well as the first state to endure a serious Anti-Federalist challenge to ratification.
Dec. 12, 1781 – During the American Revolutionary War, at the Second Battle of Ushant, a British fleet led by HMS Victory defeated a French fleet.
Dec. 12, 1792 - In Vienna, 22-year-old Ludwig van Beethoven received one of his first lessons in music composition from Franz Joseph Haydn.
Dec. 12, 1800 - Washington, D.C. was established as the capital of the United States.
Dec. 12, 1806 - Confederate General Stand Watie was born near Rome, Georgia. Watie, a Cherokee Indian, survived the tribe's Trail of Tears in the 1830s and became the only Native American to achieve the rank of general during the Civil War.
Dec. 12, 1821 – Gustave Flaubert was born in Rouen, France. He is best known for his first novel, 1856’s “Madame Bovary.”
Dec. 12, 1822 – Five commissioners were appointed to select the site for the county seat of Covington County, Ala. and Montezuma was their choice.
Dec. 12, 1861 – During the Civil War, a skirmish was fought at Gradyville, Ky.
Dec. 12, 1861 – During the Civil War, a skirmish was fought at Charleston, Mo.
Dec. 12, 1861 – During the Civil War, a skirmish was fought along the Greenbriar River, West Virginia.
Dec. 12, 1862 - The Union Army of the Potomac occupied Fredericksburg, Virginia. The Battle of Fredericksburg took placed on Dec. 13.
Dec. 12, 1862 – During the Civil War, the USS Cairo sank on the Yazoo River, becoming the first armored ship to be sunk by an electrically detonated mine.
Dec. 12, 1862 – During the Civil War, skirmishes occurred at Cherokee Station and Little Bear Creek, Ala.
Dec. 12, 1863 – Painter and printmaker Edvard Munch was born in Løten, Norway. His most famous painting, The Scream (1893), influenced the German Expressionist movement of the early 20th century.
Dec. 12, 1874 – B.M. Burns was commissioned as Monroe County, Ala.’s Sheriff.
Dec. 12, 1877 – John J. Watts was commissioned as Monroe County, Ala.’s Sheriff.
Dec. 12, 1896 - Guglielmo Marconi gave the first public demonstration of radio at Toynbee Hall, London.
Dec. 12, 1901 - The first radio signal to cross the Atlantic was picked up near St. John's Newfoundland, by inventor Guglielmo Marconi. The first signal was the letter "S" [***] in Morse Code.
Dec. 12, 1910 – American socialite Dorothy Arnold, 25, disappeared while walking on Fifth Avenue in New York City.
Dec. 12, 1913 - The "Mona Lisa" painting, missing for two years, turned up under a hotel bed in Florence.
Dec. 12, 1915 - Dr. A.B. Coxwell, C.W. Jackson and J.D. Rawls traveled to Brewton on this Sunday to attend the Methodist conference.
Dec. 15, 1915 – Frank Sinatra, one of the most successful solo singers in history, was born in Hoboken, N.J.
Dec. 12, 1920 – H.P. Lovecraft completed his short story, “The Picture in the House,” which was originally published in Issue No. 6 (July 1919) of “The National Amateur.”
Dec. 12, 1929 – British playwright John Osborne was born in London, England. He is best known for is 1956 play, “Look Back in Anger.”
Dec. 12, 1935 – The Lebensborn Project, a Nazi reproduction program, was founded by Heinrich Himmler.
Dec. 12, 1951 - Thirty Evergreen High School football players, coaches Wendell Hart and Spencer Davis and cheerleaders were honored at the annual Evergreen Quarterback Club Football Banquet on this Wednesday night at the high school lunchroom. Guest speaker for the occasion was Coach Tres Fiestes, line coach at Auburn University, who paid tribute to the team whose spirit and clean, hard play earned for it the Buddy Salter Memorial Trophy for sportsmanship. The team was rated best by the officials of the Central Alabama Officials Association who made the award voted on the basis of over 300 games worked in central and south Alabama this year. Highlighting the banquet was the annual award of the D.T. Stuart Sportsmanship Award given each year to the player best exemplifying the attributes of good sportsmanship, leadership, clean-but-hard play and team spirit. The award went to Gillis Morgan whose play before being lost for the season was great and who’s conduct after this disappointing accident was inspiring to players, coaches and the school. Hart introduced the captains of the 1952 team elected this week by the players. Pace Bozeman, hard running fullback who led the team’s ground gainers and scorers, was named Captain. Shirley Frazier, end and halfback, will serve as alternate captain next year. Hart awarded letters to 19 players and Manager Garvin Langley. Seniors receiving letters were Donahue Edson (4), Gillis Morgan (4), Gwyn Daniels (3), Lurton Chambers and Edward Evers (2); juniors, Pace Bozeman (2), Shirley Frazier, Billy Lewis, Joe Stowers, Sammy Robison, Bill Robinson and Cullen Edson; sophomores, Sam Cope (2), Paul Hanks and Lamar Sheffield; freshmen, Ward Alexander Jr., Jimmy Frazier, Wayne Douglas, Richard Taylor. Players recognized who did not receive letters included Wayne Andrews, Wayne Bell, Danny Golson, Gene Wilkerson, Ronnie Edson, Raphael Ansley, Alvin Reeves, Johnny Fussell and Lavon Shaver. Letters were awarded too to these cheerleaders, Illeana Stallworth, Patricia Alexander, Phyllis Cunningham, Maurice Golson, Barbara DaLee and Elaine Hassel.
Dec. 12, 1964 – The annual Christmas parade was scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. in Frisco City, Ala.
Dec. 12, 1965 - The rookie running back Gale Sayers of the Chicago Bears scored six touchdowns during a single game against the San Francisco 49ers at Chicago’s Wrigley Field, tying the National Football League (NFL) record for most touchdowns in a single game.
Dec. 12, 1968 – The Evergreen Quarterback Club held its annual football banquet at the Evergreen High School cafeteria. Livingston State University head football coach Morris Higgenbotham was the guest speaker, and Livingston sophomore punter (and former EHS standout) Homer “Bubba” Faulkner was also a special guest.
Dec. 12, 1968 – The Monroe Journal reported that plans for the first ever Monroe County Snake Rodeo, which was to be sponsored by the Frisco City Chamber of Commerce Jan. 1-Feb. 15, were well underway.
Dec. 12, 1970 - In New Orleans, La., The Doors made their last appearance with Jim Morrison.
Dec. 12, 1976 - Joe Namath played his last game with the New York Jets.
Dec. 12, 1981 - Castleberry’s annual Christmas parade was scheduled to be held on this Saturday at 2 p.m.
Dec. 12, 1983 - Car bombs were set off in front of the French and U.S. embassies in Kuwait City. Shiite extremists were responsible for the five deaths and 86 wounded. Total of five bombs went off in different locations.
Dec. 12, 1988 - A television version of Alabama author Helen Norris's story "The Christmas Wife" was broadcast.
Dec. 12, 1989 - Awakened by a throbbing noise, a Jupille, Belgium man found a large metallic UFO hovering between trees on a nearby road. The witness saw a logo on the craft's surface that resembled ellipses and the next day police found a giant circular impression in a nearby meadow. The incident was part of the massive six-month UFO wave over Belgium and France.
Dec. 12, 1990 - Alabama author and librarian William Stanley Hoole died in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
Dec. 12, 1992 - The Nirvana album "Incesticide" was released.
Dec. 12, 1996 – The Evergreen Courant reported that the bridge on Conecuh County (Ala.) Road 29 over Sandy Creek had been closed during the past week so that the bridge could be replaced over the next few months. Although the project caused inconvenience to residents in this part of the county, the bridge was in dire need of replacement.
Dec. 12, 1996 – The Evergreen Courant reported that the Mount Union Community Church and Center, located 10 miles east of Evergreen, Ala., had been added to the Alabama Register of Landmarks and Heritage. Dating from the turn of the century, the property contained two structures depicting a vernacular style of architecture common to the period. The c. 1890 church and the remaining portion of a c. 1900 school appear today as gable-front rectangular buildings which face east in a parallel position.
Dec. 12, 2000 - Timothy McVeigh, over the objections of his lawyers, abandoned his final round of appeals and asked that his execution be set within 120 days. McVeigh was convicted of the April 1995 truck bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Fedal Building in Oklahoma City, Okla. that killed 168 and injured 500.
Dec. 12, 2000 - The Texas Rangers signed Alex Rodriguez to a record breaking 10-year, $252 million contract. The contract amount broke all Major League Baseball records and all professional sports records.
Dec. 12, 2000 – Champ Quest Director Dennis Hall told Lohr McKinstry, staff writer for the Plattsburgh, N.Y. Press-Republican that he had personally spotted “Champ” on July 23 “over a four-minute period” as the creature “stuck its neck straight out of the water and remained on the surface.”
Dec. 12, 2001 – Italian geologist and explorer Ardito Desio died in Rome at the age of 104.
Dec. 12, 2001 - Former Dallas Cowboy Nate Newton, and two others, were arrested on charges of carrying at least 175 pounds of marijuana. It was his second arrest in six weeks.
Dec. 12, 2010 - The collapse of the inflatable roof at Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome, Mall of America Stadium caused the cancellation of a game between the New York Giants and the Minnesota Vikings. The teams played the next day at Detroit's Ford Field.
Dec. 12, 2014 – Witnesses reported seeing a UFO around midnight near Gadsden in Etowah County, Ala. The witness in this case offered few details other than to say that he was driving home from work when he first saw what he described as a UFO. “When I first saw it, I was thinking that it was a plane, but it had no sound,” the witness reported.