50 Newsworthy Anniversaries in December 2014 for you to write about (and make money from!)

Here are 50 newsworthy anniversaries coming up in December 2014 for you to write about (and make money from). The anniversaries are listed 6 months in advance to give you enough time for research and writing.

We have painstakingly cross-checked every entry, but you are advised to check all facts again as part of your research. Please let us know of any errors you find.

The Date-A-Base Book 2014The listing below is a small sample of the entries for November from The Date-A-Base Book 2014There are 221 anniversaries for December in the book, which covers the whole of 2014 from January to December and features more than 2,650 anniversaries in total.

Just one published article will cover the cost of your copy many times over.

The Date-A-Base Book 2015 (full version) is also available


200 years ago (2 Dec 1814)
Death of the Marquis de Sade, French aristocrat, writer and philosopher. Best known for his perverse sexual preferences and violent erotica which gave rise to the term ‘sadism’.

150 years ago (8 Dec 1864)
Death of George Boole, British mathematician who invented Boolean algebra (also called Boolean logic), which forms the basis of modern computer circuits and programming.

150 years ago (21 Dec 1864)
American Civil War: General Sherman’s March to the Sea ended and his Union forces captured Savannah, Georgia.

125 years ago (6 Dec 1889)
Death of Jefferson Davis, first and only President of the Confederate States of America.

125 years ago (16 Dec 1889)
Birth of Sir Noël Coward, British playwright, actor, singer and composer. Best known for his comedies of manners (Private Lives, Design for Living, Brief Encounter, Blithe Spirit and more).

125 years ago (25 Dec 1889)
Birth of Lila Bell Acheson, American magazine publisher and philanthropist who founded Reader’s Digest with her husband.

100 years ago (10 Dec 1914)
Birth of Dorothy Lamour, American film actress and WWII pin-up. Best known for the Road to… comedies with Bing Crosby and Bob Hope.

100 years ago (21 Dec 1914)
World War I: the first German air raid on Britain. A German plane dropped a bomb in the grounds of a rectory in Dover. No one was injured. (Britain’s first air raid casualties were on 19th Jan 1915 when a German Zeppelin bombed Great Yarmouth and King’s Lynn.)

100 years ago (24 – 25 Dec 1914)
World War I: the Christmas truce. British and German troops observed an unofficial ceasefire at several points along the Western Front, singing songs and exchanging greetings from their trenches and even crossing into ‘no man’s land’ to exchange food and souvenirs and play football.

100 years ago (26 Dec 1914)
Birth of Richard Widmark, American film, stage and television actor.

75 years ago (1 Dec 1939?)
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer made his first-ever appearance, in a children’s colouring book given away by Montgomery Ward stores in the USA. (Approximate date; it was launched for the 1939 Christmas season.)

75 years ago (2 Dec 1939)
LaGuardia Airport in New York City, USA began operating (as the New York Municipal Airport).

75 years ago (12 Dec 1939)
DuPont began producing nylon commercially at its new plant in Seaford, Delaware, USA.

75 years ago (13 Dec 1939)
World War II – the Battle of the River Plate – a naval battle in the South Atlantic. Allied victory. Following the battle, the British tricked the Germans into scuttling their battleship Admiral Graf Spee on 17th Dec, leading its captain, Hans Langsdorff, to commit suicide on 19th December.

75 years ago (15 Dec 1939)
The U.S. première of the film Gone with the Wind. (Released: 17th Jan 1940.)

75 years ago (23 Dec 1939)
Death of Anthony Fokker, pioneering Dutch aircraft manufacturer.

75 years ago (27 Dec 1939)
The city of Erzincan, Turkey was destroyed by an earthquake which killed more than 30,000 people. The damage was so extensive that the city was abandoned and reconstructed on a new site to the south.

70 years ago (16 Dec 1944 – 16 Jan 1945)
World War II – the Battle of the Bulge (Belgium). Allied victory. (The last major German counter-offensive of the war.)

60 years ago (2 Dec 1954)
The U.S. Senate censured Senator Joseph McCarthy for bringing the Senate into ‘dishonour and disrepute’ in his investigation of suspected communists in the government, military and other areas of society.

60 years ago (23 Dec 1954)
The world’s first successful kidney transplant was carried out in Boston, Massachusetts, USA. (Anti-rejection drugs were not available until 1964 so transplants were only carried out between identical twins until then.)

50 years ago (8 Dec 1964)
Death of Simon Marks, 1st Baron Marks of Broughton, British businessman who transformed his father’s Marks & Spencer market stalls into one of Britain’s leading retailers.

50 years ago (9 Dec 1964)
Death of Dame Edith Sitwell, British poet and critic, also noted for her formidable personality and eccentric appearance.

50 years ago (11 Dec 1964)
Death of Sam Cooke, American soul/pop/gospel/R&B singer, songwriter, producer and entrepreneur. Regarded as one of the founders of soul music (shot dead by a motel manager, circumstances unknown).

50 years ago (12 Dec 1964)
The Republic of Kenya was declared on the first anniversary of its independence. Prime Minister Jomo Kenyatta became its first President.

50 years ago (22 Dec 1964)
The Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird made its first flight, in California, USA. (It is the world’s fastest manned air-breathing jet aircraft.)

40 years ago (13 Dec 1974)
Malta declared itself a republic.

40 years ago (24 Dec 1974)
British politician John Stonehouse was arrested in Australia (on suspicion of being Lord Lucan). He had faked his death on 20th Nov by leaving a pile of clothing on a beach in Miami, Florida, USA.

30 years ago (3 Dec 1984)
Bhopal Disaster: a poisonous gas leak at a Union Carbide pesticide plant in India killed thousands of people and left 120,000 with health problems.

30 years ago (3 Dec 1984)
Terrorists hijacked a Kuwaiti airliner bound for Pakistan and forced it to land in Tehran, Iran. Women, children and Muslim passengers were released and the rest were held hostage for 5 days until Iranian authorities stormed the plane. Two American passengers were killed. The terrorists were thought to be linked to Hezbollah.

30 years ago (10 Dec 1984)
South African Anglican bishop Desmond Tutu was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize at a ceremony in Oslo, Norway.

30 years ago (28 Dec 1984)
Rajiv Gandhi won a massive victory in the Indian general election after being persuaded to stand for his assassinated mother’s Congress Party.

25 years ago (3 Dec 1989)
East German leader Egon Krenz resigned, along with the entire Politburo and the Communist Party’s Central Committee, ending communist rule in East Germany.

25 years ago (3 Dec 1989)
U.S. President George H. W. Bush and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev announced the end of the Cold War at a meeting in Malta.

25 years ago (6 Dec 1989)
The École Polytechnique Massacre (also called the Montreal Massacre), Canada. A gunman killed 14 female university students and injured 14 others (both male and female) before killing himself. His suicide note blamed feminists for ruining his life.

25 years ago (10 Dec 1989)
The collapse of communism in Czechoslovakia. The President/Communist leader of Czechoslovakia, Gustáv Husák was forced to appoint the country’s first non-Communist government since 1948. He then resigned. He was succeeded by Václav Havel on 29th December.

25 years ago (14 Dec 1989)
A democratic presidential election was held in Chile, ending General Augusto Pinochet’s military dictatorship. (Patricio Aylwin was inaugurated as president on 11th March 1990.)

25 years ago (14 Dec 1989)
Death of Andrei Sakharov, Russian nuclear physicist and dissident. Winner of the 1975 Nobel Peace Price for his work as a human rights campaigner.

25 years ago (17 Dec 1989)
The first episode of The Simpsons was broadcast on the Fox network in the USA.

25 years ago (20 Dec 1989 – 31 Jan 1990)
The U.S. invasion of Panama. Following Panama’s declaration of war against the USA on 15th Dec, the USA invaded Panama to safeguard the lives of U.S. citizens living there, to defend democracy and human rights, to combat drug trafficking, and to protect the neutrality of the Panama Canal. Panamanian leader Manuel Noriega was overthrown and taken to the USA for trial. (He was later sentenced to 30 years in prison.)

25 years ago (22 Dec 1989)
The Brandenburg Gate in Berlin was reopened, effectively reuniting East and West Germany.

25 years ago (22 Dec 1989)
Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausçescu was overthrown in a revolutionary coup. (Executed on 25th December for crimes against the state.)

25 years ago (22 Dec 1989)
Death of Samuel Beckett, Irish writer, playwright, poet and literary critic (Waiting for Godot, Endgame and many more). Winner of the 1969 Nobel Prize for Literature.

20 years ago (11 Dec 1994)
First Chechen War: Russian troops invaded Chechnya.

15 years ago (31 Dec 1999)
Russian President Boris Yeltsin announced his resignation and said that Prime Minister Vladimir Putin would take over with immediate effect.

10 years ago (1 Dec 2004)
Death of Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands. Prince consort of Queen Juliana. Father of Queen Beatrix.

10 years ago (7 Dec 2004)
Hamid Karzai was sworn in President of Afghanistan.

10 years ago (16 Dec 2004)
The Millau Viaduct in southern France opened. It is the tallest bridge in the world.

10 years ago (17 Dec 2004)
The Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act came into effect in the USA. It was the biggest overhaul of U.S. intelligence-gathering for 50 years and established the National Counter-terrorism Center and the position of Director of National Intelligence.

10 years ago (26 Dec 2004)
Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami (also called the Boxing Day Tsunami). A massive undersea earthquake near Sumatra caused a devastating tsunami that swamped coastal areas in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand and Africa. It was one of the deadliest natural disasters in recorded history, killing over 230,000 people in 14 countries.

10 years ago (31 Dec 2004)
Taipei 101 opened in Taiwan. (It was the tallest skyscraper in the world at that time. Surpassed by the Burj Khalifa in Dubai in Jan 2010.)

– – – – – – –

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