On This Day, Dec. 21: Apollo 8, first manned orbit around moon, launches

Dec. 21 (UPI) — On this date in history:

In 1620, the Pilgrims arrived at Plymouth, Mass., following a 63-day voyage from England aboard the Mayflower.

In 1864, Union Gen. William T. Sherman completed his Civil War “march to the sea” across the South and arrived in Savannah, Ga.

In 1913, the first crossword puzzle in an American newspaper appeared in The New York Sunday World.

In 1937, Walt Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the first full-length animated feature film, premiered in Los Angeles.

In 1958, three months after a new French Constitution was approved, Charles de Gaulle was elected the first president of the Fifth Republic by a sweeping majority of voters.

UPI File Photo

In 1968, Apollo 8, the first manned voyage to orbit the moon, was launched. Apollo 11 was the first mission to put astronauts on the moon’s surface.

In 1975, the notorious terrorist Carlos the Jackal led a raid on a meeting of OPEC oil ministers in Vienna. German and Arab terrorists stormed in with machine guns, killed three people and took 63 others hostage, including 11 oil ministers. The hostages were later freed.

In 1980, wealthy socialite Martha “Sunny” Crawford von Bulow was found comatose in her Newport, R.I., mansion. Her husband, Claus von Bulow was convicted of attempted murder in a trial that garnered worldwide attention. His conviction was later overturned.

In 1988, Pan Am Flight 103 exploded and crashed in Lockerbie, Scotland, killing everyone aboard and 11 people on the ground for a total death toll of 270.

File Photo by Alexis C. Glenn/UPI

In 1990, a boat carrying about 100 U.S. sailors involved in Operation Desert Shield capsized off the Israeli coast. Twenty-one people died.

In 1991, 11 former Soviet republics declared an end to the Soviet Union and forged a commonwealth that guaranteed independence.

In 1992, 54 people were killed when a chartered jetliner carrying 340 people on a holiday to southern Portugal crashed in bad weather.

In 2009, the U.S. government set a 3-hour limit on the time airlines can keep passengers waiting on a plane without giving them food or letting them off the aircraft.

In 2012, PSY’s video for his hit song, “Gangnam Style,” became the first to hit 1 billion views on YouTube. Even before the milestone, the South Korean rapper’s song was the most-watched video on the website.

In 2017, the U.N. General Assembly approved a resolution condemning President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

File Photo by Ismael Mohamad/ UPI

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