GOOD MORNING – TODAY IS THURSDAY, December 25, the 359th day of 2014 with 06 to follow. Today is Christmas Day. Sunrise in the Boston area is @ 7:2 and sunset is @ 4:16. The moon is waxing. The morning stars are stars are Jupiter, Mercury & Saturn. The evening stars are Mars, Neptune, Uranus & Venus.
ON THIS DAY IN: 336 – The first recorded celebration of Christmas on December 25 took place in Rome. Church fathers designated December 25th, the birthday of the popular pagan god Mithras, as Jesus’s official birth date. The celebration of the birth of Christ also took over the pagan winter solstice holiday, which, like the birthday of the sun god Mithras, fell in late December. From thereon, December 25 was to be observed at a holy mass, or “Christ’s Mass.”
800 – Charlemagne was crowned first Holy Roman Emperor in Rome by Pope Leo III.
1066 – William the Conqueror was crowned king of England at Westminster Abbey.
1776 – General George Washington and his troops crossed the Delaware River for a surprise attack against Hessian forces at Trenton, New Jersey.
1818 – “Silent Night” was performed for the first time, at the Church of St. Nikolaus in Oberndorff, Austria.
1830 – The first regularly scheduled passenger train in the United States began operation, the South Carolina Canal and Railroad Company.
1868 – President Andrew Johnson granted unqualified amnesty to all those who participated in the “insurrection or rebellion” against the United States, i.e. the Civil War.
1914 – During World War I, Allied and German troops observed an unofficial truce, even playing football together on the Western Front’s “no man’s land.”
1926 – Hirohito became emperor of Japan, succeeding his father, Emperor Yoshihito.
1941 – Hong Kong was surrendered to the Japanese.
1972 – The Nicaraguan capital Managua was devastated by an earthquake which killed over 10,000 people.
1989 – Dissident playwright Vaclav Havel was elected president of Czechoslovakia.
1991 – Soviet Union President Mikhail S. Gorbachev announced his resignation.