18 December 2006

This day in history: 18 Dec

1642: Abel Tasman became the first European to reach New Zealand.

1787: New Jersey became the third state to ratify the US Constitution.

1793: The French frigate La Lutine (26 guns) was handed over to the British by French royalists.

1966: Saturn's moon Epimetheus was discovered.

1973: Soyuz 13 (V V Lebedev and P I Klimuk) was launched from Baikonur for an eight-day mission.

1999: EOS AM-1 (Terra) was launched from Vandenberg AFB, California.

Antonio Stradivari (1644-1737), Andrija Mohorovičić (1857-1936) and Hans-Ulrich Rudel (1916-1982) died on this date.

And happy birthday to Queen Christina of Sweden (1626-1689), Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria (1863-1914), Josef Stalin (1878-1953), Benjamin O Davis Jr (1912-2002), Betty Grable (1916-1973), Ossie Davis (1917-2005), Michael Moorcock (1939-TBD), Steven Spielberg (1946-TBD), Ron White (1956-TBD) and my niece (1963-TBD).

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