1776 After crossing the Delaware River, George Washington's army defeats a Hessian force at Trenton, New Jersey.
1865 James Mason of Massachusetts wins the first U.S. patent, for a coffee percolator.
1900 Prohibitionist Carry Nation begins her campaign of destroying saloons when she smashes the bar at the Carey Hotel in Wichita, Kansas.
1932 Radio City Music Hall opens in New York City.
1832 John C. Calhoun becomes the first vice president to resign, leaving office over political differences with President Andrew Jackson.
1945 Congress formally recognizes the Pledge of Allegiance as the national pledge.
1851 The first Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) in the United States is organized in Boston.
1890 The U.S. Cavalry massacres up to 300 Lakita Sioux at Wounded Knee, South Dakota.
|Sioux survivors from the Battle at Wounded Knee.|
1853 James Gadsden, minister to Mexico, signs the Gadsden Purchase, in which the United States buys nearly 30,000 square miles of land from Mexico.
1924 Astronomer Edwin Hubble announces evidence of the existence of a galaxy outside our own.
1907 A giant ball is first dropped in Times Square to bring in the New Year.
1999 The U.S. transfers full control of the Panama Canal to Panama.
1863 Abraham Lincoln issues the Emancipation Proclamation.
1892 Ellis Island begins processing immigrants in New York Harbor.