GOOD MORNING – TODAY IS WEDNESDAY, December 31, the 365th day of 2014 with 00 to follow. Sunrise in the Boston area is @ 7:13 and sunset is @ 4:20. 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: 1600 – Queen Elizabeth I of England granted a formal charter to the London merchants trading to the East Indies, hoping to break the Dutch monopoly of the spice trade.
1775 – The British fought off an attack by Continental Army generals Richard Montgomery andBenedict Arnold at Quebec; general Richard Montgomery was killed.
1781 – The first modern bank in the U.S., the Bank of North America, was organized by Robert Morris and received its charter from the Confederation Congress. It began operating in Philadelphia.
1805 – The French Revolutionary calendar (Republican calendar) in use since 1793, was last used officially.
1879 – Thomas Edison first demonstrated his electric incandescent light bulb to the public, in Menlo Park, New Jersey.
1890 – New York’s Ellis Island opened its doors to what would be millions of immigrants to the United States.
1897 – Brooklyn, New York, spent its last day as a separate entity before becoming part of New York City.
1911 – Marie Sklodowska Curie received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for her isolation of the element of metallic radium and other earlier discoveries in the field of chemistry. She was the first person to be awarded a second Nobel Prize, eight years after she became the first woman ever to be honored with a Nobel Prize.
1923 – In London, the chimes of Big Ben were broadcast by the BBC for the first time.
1946 – President Harry S. Truman officially proclaimed an end to World War II.
1960 – The farthing coin, which had been in use in Great Britain since the 13th century, ceased to be legal tender.
1965 – California became the largest state in population.
1974 – Private U.S. citizens were allowed to buy and own gold for the first time in more than 40 years.
1990 – Titleholder Gary Kasparov of the USSR won the world chess championship match against his countryman Anatoly Karpov.
1995 – Bill Watterson’s comic strip “Calvin and Hobbes” ends syndication which started on November 18, 1985.
1999 – Panama assumed control of the Panama Canal, according to the treaty of 1979.