December 21

1620 Pilgrims aboard the Mayflower went ashore for the first time at present-day Plymouth, Massachusetts.

1898 Scientists Pierre & Marie Curie discovered the radioactive element radium.

1913 The New York World published the first crossword puzzle.

1922 Paul Winchell (the original voice of Tigger in Winnie The Pooh) is born. He dies in June 2005 at age 82.

1937 Disney premiered Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs, the first feature-length cartoon with color and sound.

1940 Frank Zappa is born. He dies in 1993.

1940 Author F. Scott Fitzgerald (The Great Gatsby) dies at age 44.

1946 Beach Boys singer-guitarist Carl Wilson is born. He dies in 1998.

1946 Frank Capra‘s It’s a Wonderful Life premiered.

1964 Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts publishes a tribute to jazz great Charlie Parker called Ode To A High Flying Bird.

1965 The Yardbirds begin recording “Shapes Of Things” at Chess Studios in Chicago.

1967 Their Satanic Majesties Request by the Rolling Stones is released.

1967 Doors keyboardist Ray Manzarek and Dorothy Fujikowa are married.

1968 Janis Joplin gives her first performance since leaving Big Brother & the Holding Company, on a bill with Booker T & the MGsRufus & Carla Thomas, and the Bar-Kays.

1969 Vince Lombardi coached his last football game, as his team, the Washington Redskins, lost to the Dallas Cowboys by a score of 20-10.

1974 ”Cat’s In The Cradle” by Harry Chapin hits Number One on the pop chart.

1978 Serial killer John Wayne Gacy, Jr. was arrested.

1980 ”(Just Like) Starting Over” by John Lennon hits Number One on the pop chart.

1985 Heart‘s self-titled release hits Number One on the album chart.

1988 Two-hundred-seventy people were killed in the terrorist bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland — all 259 people on board the plane and 11 people on the ground.

1991 Eleven of the 12 former Soviet republics proclaimed the new Commonwealth Of Independent States.

1994 Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys settled a lawsuit by fellow group member Mike Love, who was seeking songwriting credit on 35 songs, for $5 million.

1994 A firebomb exploded on a New York City subway train, injuring 48 people, including the man carrying the device. Unemployed computer programmer Edward Leary was later convicted of attempted murder.