December 13, 2020
Day 348 of 366
December 13th is the 348th day of the year. It is Martial Law Victims Remembrance Day in Poland and Nanking Massacre Memorial Day in China.
In the United States, today is “celebrated” as National Cocoa Day, National Violin Day, National Day Of The Horse, Pick A Pathologist Pal Day, and National Guard Birthday.
Historical items of note:
- In 1577, Sir Francis Drake sets sail from Plymouth, England, starting his round-the-world voyage.
- In 1636, the Massachusetts Bay Colony organized three militia regiments to defend the colony against the Pequot Indians. This organization is recognized today as the founding of the National Guard of the United States.
- In 1769, Dartmouth College was founded by the Reverend Eleazar Wheelock, with a royal charter from King George III, on land donated by Royal governor John Wentworth.
- In 1816, German engineer and businessman Werner von Siemens was born. He was the founder of the Siemens manufacturing company.
- In 1925, actor, singer, and dancer Dick Van Dyke was born.
- In 1928, George Gershwin’s An American in Paris was first performed.
- In 1929, Canadian actor and producer Christopher Plummer was born.
- In 1934, film producer Richard D. Zanuck was born.
- In 1958, actress Lynn-Holly Johnson was born.
- In 1961, English composer, conductor, and producer Harry Gregson-Williams was born.
- In 1962, NASA launched Relay 1, the first active repeater communications satellite in orbit.
- In 1972, astronauts Eugene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt began the third and final extra-vehicular activity (EVA) or “Moonwalk” of Apollo 17. To date they are the last humans to set foot on the Moon.
- In 1989, singer-songwriter, record producer, and actress Taylor Swift was born.
December 13th is Republic Day in Malta.
This public holiday celebrates the anniversary of the creation of the Republic of Malta in 1974. On that day, the constitution of Malta revised, which resulted in the transforming the State of Malta into a republic. This effectively abolishing the role of Reġina ta’ Malta (the Queen of Malta) in the country.
Later that same year, Sir Anthony Mamo was named as the first president of the country. British troops did not leave the country until March 31, 1979.
The Thing About Today is an effort to look at each day of 2020 with respect to its historical context.
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