Today in History: Friday, December 07, 2012
On Dec. 7, 1941, Japanese warplanes attacked the home base of the U.S. Pacific fleet at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, drawing the United States into World War II. More than 2,300 Americans were killed.
1787 Delaware became the first state to ratify the U.S. Constitution.
1796 Electors chose John Adams to be the second president of the United States.
1836 Martin Van Buren was elected the eighth president of the United States.
1842 The New York Philharmonic gave its first concert.
1963 Videotaped instant replay was used for the first time in a live sports telecast during the Army-Navy football game on CBS.
1972 America's last moon mission was launched as Apollo 17 blasted off from Cape Canaveral.
1982 A U.S. prisoner was executed by injection for the first time, in Huntsville, Texas.
1985 Retired Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart died at age 70.
1988 An earthquake in northern Armenia claimed an estimated 25,000 lives.
1993 A gunman opened fire on a Long Island Rail Road commuter train, killing six people and wounding 17. (Colin Ferguson was later sentenced to a minimum of 200 years in prison.)
1995 A 746-pound probe from the Galileo spacecraft hurtled into Jupiter's atmosphere, sending back data to the mothership before it was destroyed.
2001 Taliban forces abandoned their last bastion in Afghanistan, fleeing the southern city of Kandahar.
2002 Iraq denied it had weapons of mass destruction in a declaration to the United Nations.
2004 Hamid Karzai was sworn in as Afghanistan's first popularly elected president.
2011 Ousted Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich was sentenced to 14 years in prison for corruption.