Shimla, Dec. 23 Keekli Bureau

This Day in History

2013

Russian weapons designer Mikhail Kalashnikov—who invented the AK-47 (automatic Kalashnikov Model 1947), an assault rifle that became one of the most successful and ubiquitous firearms of the modern era—died in Izhevsk, Russia.

2001

Argentina announced the suspension of payments on its external debt—the biggest debt default in history to date.

1972

American gridiron football running back Franco Harris of the Pittsburgh Steelers made “the Immaculate Reception,” a dramatic catch that is regarded as one of the most famous plays in NFL history.

1968

Eighty-two crewmen of the USS Pueblo were released after being held in captivity for 11 months by North Korea, which claimed the U.S. Navy intelligence ship had crossed into its waters.

1941

Early in World War II, invading Japanese forces defeated U.S. troops at the Battle of Wake Island.

1929

American jazz trumpeter and vocalist Chet Baker, who was noted for the plaintive, fragile tone of both his playing and his singing, was born.

1913

With the signing of the Federal Reserve Act by U.S. President Woodrow Wilson, the Federal Reserve System came into being.

1876

The first comprehensive constitution of the Ottoman Empire went into effect, giving the sultan full executive power.

1815

British author Jane Austen published her fourth novel, Emma, which centres on a precocious young woman whose misplaced confidence in her matchmaking abilities occasions several romantic misadventures.

1805

Joseph Smith, an American prophet whose writings, along with the Bible, provide the theological foundation of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and other Mormon denominations, was born.

1783

Before the Continental Congress, George Washington resigned as commander in chief of the Continental Army.

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