History Hunt

December 25th is, of course, the day on which Christians celebrate Christmas, but December 25th is also the date on which some historic non-Christmas-related things happened. Challenge your kids to find at least three.
Some possibilities:
• Charlemagne was crowned Holy Roman Emperor on December 25th, 800.
• William the Conqueror was crowned King of England on December 25th, 1066.
• Christopher Columbus’s ship, the Santa Maria, ran aground and sank on December 25th, 1492.
• Swedish Astronomer Anders Celsius introduced the Centigrade temperature scale on December 25th, 1741.
• German astronomer Johann Georg Palitzsch sighted the return of Halley’s comet on December 25th, 1758.
• George Washington crossed the Delaware River with his Continental Army on December 25th, 1776.
• The War of 1812 officially ended with the signing of the Treaty of Ghent on December 25th, 1814.
• Andrew Jackson issued a final pardon to Confederate soldiers on December 25th, 1868.
• Hirohito became the Emperor of Japan on December 25th, 1926.
• The Mt. Van Hoevenberg bobsled run was opened to the public on December 25th, 1930 in Lake Placid, New York.
• Hong Kong surrendered to the Japanese on December 25th, 1941.
• Apollo 8 orbited the moon on December 25th, 1968.
• The USSR invaded Afghanistan on December 25th, 1979.
• Former Romanian President Nicolae Ceausescu and his wife, Elena, were executed on December 25th, 1989.
• Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev announced his resignation on December 25th, 1991.

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