This Week in History (12/19)


“Washington Crossing the Delaware” by Emanuel Leutze

Ryan Rose, Co-Editor

December 19th, 1843

English writer Charles Dickens published A Christmas Carol. The work would go on to be portrayed in numerous films, tv-shows, musicals, and plays since its release.

December 20th, 1860

South Carolina attempted to declare independence from The United States of America, making it the first state to secede from the Union prior to the Civil War. This came as a result of the growing sectional divide and ultimately the election of Abraham Lincoln to the presidency.

December 21st, 1898

Marie Curie and her husband Pierre Curie discovered a new radioactive element, radium. The element would later be used to help treat cancer.

December 22nd, 1941

Just weeks after the attacks on Pearl Harbor, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt met with British Prime Minister Winston Churchill in Washington D.C. to discuss the ongoing World War. 

December 23rd, 1876

The Ottoman Empire put their first official constitution into effect. This constitution gave the Ottoman sultan, the head of the Empire, full executive power.

December 24th, 1814

The United States and Great Britain signed the Treaty of Ghent, the treaty that officially ended the War of 1812. The end of the war made the United States less dependent on Europe and led to an increase in American nationalism.

December 25th, 1776

General George Washington led the Continental Army across the Delaware River and attacked  British troops at Trenton, New Jersey. The surprise attack is infamous for occurring on Christmas Day and being the first major victory of the Continental Army in the Revolutionary War.