23 December

23 December

December 23 is the 357th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar; eight days remain until the end of the year. 

We have some interesting facts & historic events all about December 23rd, including areas in religion, crime, health and more.

Keep reading for more interesting facts about December 23rd in history!

Table of Contents

  1. Global Celebrations
  2. Historic Events
  3. Famous Birthdays
  4. Heartbreaking Deaths

Global Celebrations

  • Festivus Day
  • National Roots Day

Historic Events

What Happened On This Day – December 23

1994: Organized crime boss Whitey Bulger goes into hiding

The convicted murderer stayed out of sight for 16 years causing great embarrassment to the American Federal Bureau of Investigations. He was finally arrested in 2011.

1990: Slovenian referendum on independence from Yugoslavia

The Eastern European country had joined the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia as a socialist republic state in 1945. Actual independence for the country did not occur until June of 1991, when the Slovenians rejected Yugoslavian interference in the form of a 10-day war that ended on July 7, 1991. A new constitution for the country came into force on December 23, 1991.

1975: Metric Conversion Act signed by U.S. President Gerald Ford

The act made the metric system the preferred system of weights and measures in the United States. Today, the metric system is predominantly only used by scientists and academics in the U.S. Common people tend to follow the customary units that were developed before American Independence. The U.S. is 1 of 3 countries in the world that do not use the metric system. Liberia and Myanmar are the other two.

1958: Tokyo Tower opened to the public

At 333 meters tall, it is world’s tallest, self-supported steel tower. It is based on the Eiffel Tower and is used for communication purposes.

1888: Vincent van Gogh cuts off his ear

It is now believed that the Dutch painter was suffering from a psychotic break at the time of the event. After cutting off his left ear, van Gogh bandaged his head and took the severed ear to a prostitute for safekeeping.

1987: Muslim Lebanese Army soldiers set up a Christmas tree on the Green Line to celebrate the holiday with Christian soldiers on December 23, 1987

Muslim Lebanese Army soldiers set up a Christmas tree on the Green Line to celebrate the holiday with Christian soldiers on December 23, 1987

Famous Birthdays

Births On This Day, December 23

1967: Carla Bruni, Italian/French singer-songwriter, model

1964: Eddie Vedder, American singer-songwriter, guitarist

1963: Jim Harbaugh, American football player

1944: Wesley Clark, American general

1918: Helmut Schmidt, German politician, 5th Chancellor of Germany

Heartbreaking Deaths

Deaths On This Day, December 23

2009: Ngapoi Ngawang Jigme, Tibetan politician

2007: Oscar Peterson, Canadian pianist, composer

2004: P. V. Narasimha Rao, Indian lawyer, politician, activist, 9th Prime Minister of India

1953: Lavrentiy Beria, Soviet politician

1795: Henry Clinton, English general, politician


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