Felisha Werner

Written by Felisha Werner

Modified & Updated: 30 May 2024

Jessica Corbett

Reviewed by Jessica Corbett

Source: Facts.net

December 19th has been witness to numerous significant events throughout history. From groundbreaking discoveries to notable achievements, this date holds a special place in the annals of time. Whether it is a momentous scientific breakthrough, a historical milestone, or a cultural phenomenon, December 19th has seen its fair share of remarkable occurrences.

In this article, we delve into the captivating facts and events that have taken place on December 19th. Join us as we explore the past and unravel the tales of groundbreaking inventions, political turning points, momentous birthdays, and much more. From the birth of influential individuals to pivotal moments that shaped our world, we uncover the rich tapestry of history associated with this date.

So, prepare to embark on a journey through time as we unveil the captivating stories and moments that make December 19th an unforgettable day in history.

Key Takeaways:

  • December 19th marks the day of the first national Thanksgiving in the United States, the publication of “A Christmas Carol,” and the impeachment of President Bill Clinton, shaping history in diverse ways.
  • On December 19th, the Wright brothers achieved the first powered flight, the Voyager 1 spacecraft sent close-up images of Saturn, and the musical “Les Misérables” opened in London’s West End, making it a day of remarkable scientific and cultural breakthroughs.
Table of Contents


  • 1777: The United States celebrates its first national day of Thanksgiving.
  • 1843: A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens is published for the first time in London.
  • 1946: War crimes trials begin in Tokyo, Japan, for the leaders of World War II.
  • 1974: Nelson Rockefeller is sworn in as the 41st Vice President of the United States.
  • 1998: The House of Representatives impeaches President Bill Clinton on charges of perjury and obstruction of justice.


  • 1903: The Wright brothers make their first successful flight in a powered aircraft in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.
  • 1957: The first nuclear reactor for civilian use is opened in Shippingport, Pennsylvania.
  • 1972: Apollo 17, the final Apollo lunar mission, lands on the Moon.
  • 1980: The Voyager 1 spacecraft sends back the first close-up images of Saturn.
  • 2001: The International Space Station (ISS) receives its first crew members.


  • 1776: Thomas Paine publishes his pamphlet “The American Crisis” advocating American independence.
  • 1848: Women’s rights convention in Seneca Falls, New York, calls for women’s suffrage.
  • 1956: The Japanese government is formed by the Liberal Democratic Party, marking the end of post-war occupation.
  • 1997: The Angolan government and UNITA rebels sign a peace treaty, ending a 27-year civil war.
  • 2013: The Ukrainian government announces the suspension of preparations for a trade agreement with the European Union, triggering protests and unrest.


  • 1849: Emily Brontë’s novel “Wuthering Heights” is published under the pseudonym Ellis Bell.
  • 1940: Walt Disney’s animated film “Fantasia” is released in the United States.
  • 1975: The rock band Queen releases their album “A Night at the Opera,” featuring the hit song “Bohemian Rhapsody.
  • 1987: The musical “Les Misérables” opens at the Barbican Theatre in London’s West End.
  • 2001: The film adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring” is released.



  • 1119: Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury, is murdered in Canterbury Cathedral.
  • 1799: George Washington, the first President of the United States, passes away at Mount Vernon.
  • 1946: Léon Blum, French politician and three-time Prime Minister of France.
  • 1997: Jimmy Rogers, American blues guitarist and singer.
  • 2008: Bettie Page, American model and icon of 1950s pin-up culture.


December 19th has witnessed significant historical events, scientific breakthroughs, political milestones, cultural events, as well as the births of notable figures and the passing of iconic individuals. These events have shaped the world we live in and contributed to the rich tapestry of human history. From the United States’ first national day of Thanksgiving and the publication of Charles Dickens’ beloved novel “A Christmas Carol” to the first successful flight by the Wright brothers and the impeachment of President Bill Clinton, December 19th holds a diverse range of events that have left a lasting impact.


Q: Why is it important to learn about historical events?

A: Learning about historical events helps us understand the past, make sense of the present, and shape a better future. It provides insights into how societies have evolved, the struggles faced, and the progress achieved.

Q: What scientific breakthroughs occurred on December 19th in history?

A: Some of the scientific breakthroughs on December 19th include the Wright brothers’ first successful flight, the opening of the first nuclear reactor for civilian use, and the close-up images of Saturn sent by the Voyager 1 spacecraft.

Q: Are there any significant political milestones associated with December 19th?

A: Yes, notable political milestones on December 19th include the publication of Thomas Paine’s pamphlet advocating American independence, the formation of the Japanese government after post-war occupation, and the signing of a peace treaty to end the civil war in Angola.

Q: What cultural events took place on December 19th?

A: Cultural events on December 19th include the publication of Emily Brontë’s novel “Wuthering Heights,” the release of Walt Disney’s film “Fantasia,” and the opening of the musical “Les Misérables” in London’s West End.

Q: Who were some notable individuals born on December 19th?

A: Some notable individuals born on December 19th include Benjamin Franklin, Leonid Brezhnev, Alyssa Milano, and Jake Gyllenhaal.

Q: Who are some notable figures who passed away on December 19th?

A: Notable individuals who passed away on December 19th include Archbishop Thomas Becket, George Washington, and Bettie Page.

Was this page helpful?

Our commitment to delivering trustworthy and engaging content is at the heart of what we do. Each fact on our site is contributed by real users like you, bringing a wealth of diverse insights and information. To ensure the highest standards of accuracy and reliability, our dedicated editors meticulously review each submission. This process guarantees that the facts we share are not only fascinating but also credible. Trust in our commitment to quality and authenticity as you explore and learn with us.