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    New York Almanac -> December

    New York City in December

    Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree
    Christmas at Rockefeller Center

    This Month: ....Average monthly temperature in December : 35° ... this month, join thousands of holiday revelers at Rockefeller Center, Radio City Music Hall, South Street Seaport, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and other venues around town for getting into the spirit of Christmas...

    ...then get ready for a wild night of partying and revelry on December 31st in Times Square as the famous ball drops to welcome in another New Year ...

    December 1

    ...Today in Classical Music: Wagner's "Tristan and Isolde" makes its U.S. premier at the the Metropolitan Opera ...

    Prohibition repealed, December 5, 1933
    December 5

    December 2

    ...Elvita Adams climbs over the fence and jumps from the Empire State Building this cold and windy night in 1979 when a sudden gust blows her right back to the 85th floor. She lands on a ledge fracturing her hip, but is shortly hauled to safety...

    December 3

    ... the Nassau Street Theatre offers up the first documented musical ever performed in New York City, "The Beggar's Opera" premiering tonight in 1750, courtesy of Murray & Kean's traveling theatrical troupe ...

    December 4

    ... still considered a classic of American satire, Washington Irving's "Knickerbocker History of New York" is published this day in 1809...

    December 5

    ... "Prohibition Ends At Last! cries the front page headline of the New York Mirror as the city erupts in celebration after an amendment to the Constitution brings about the repeal of Prohibition this day in 1933...

    December 6

    ....New Yorkers wake up to learn that almost 300 people have perished in the Brooklyn Theater fire last night after a gas light ignites the scenery during a performance of The Two Orphans. Some 200 bodies are burned beyond recognition and later buried in a mass grave in Green-Wood Cemetery...

    December 7

    ... amid major fanfare in New York City this day in 1971 McGraw-Hill announces that they plan to publish Clifford Irving's "The Autobiography of Howard Hughes." The book is later revealed as one of the most brazen hoaxes in publishing history when Hughes himself holds a teleconference to disavow any knowledge of the book or the author ...

    Strawberry Fields, John Lennon Memorial  in Central Park
    December 8

    December 8

    ... millions mourn the news that ex-Beatle John Lennon, on his way home to the Dakota Apartments on the Upper West Side, is gunned down by deranged gunman Mark Chapman this night in 1980 ...

    December 9

    ...New York's first daily newspaper, American Minerva, is founded by spelling expert Noah Webster this day in 1793...

    December 10

    ...the warmest day ever in December is recorded this day in 1946 as the temperature hits 70°...

    December 11

    ...from a boat in the East River, a bazooka is fired at the U.N. this day in 1964, but the shell misses its target and falls harmlessly into the river. Three Cuban exiles who are opponents of the Castro regime are taken into custody.....

    December 12

    ... An Inside Job: a major heist is underway at The Sentry Armored Car Company this day in 1982 when unknown thieves take off with $11.4 million. A year later, 25-year-old security guard Cristos Potamitis, who claimed he was overpowered by two men in ski masks, is arrested for the the biggest cash theft in U.S. history...

    December 13

    ...New Yorkers find themselves covered under "a great fall of snow" this day in 1786....

    December 14

    ...the hangout for such A-list stars as Liza Minelli, Andy Warhol, Truman Capote, and Elizabeth Taylor, glittering disco Studio 54 is raided by FBI agents this day in 1979, leading to the arrest of club owners Steve Rubell and Ian Schrager on charges of embezzlement ...

    Studio 54
    December 14

    December 15

    ... violinist Isaac Stern leads the fight to save the venerable old Carnegie Hall and arrives triumphantly to cut the ribbon on its reopening this day in 1986. The ceremony marks the completion of a $50 million renovation...

    December 16

    ... at approximately 9PM on this cold, windy night in 1835, night watchman William Hayes is patrolling the financial district when he smells smoke, the first inkling that the Great Fire of 1835 has begun to erupt, destroying almost 700 buildings from Bond Street to South Street and from Wall Street to Coenties Slip...

    December 17

    ...British rockers The Rolling Stones are in town this night in 1999 to celebrate Keith Richards' birthday at New York's Russian Tea Room. The party later spills out into the street where Richards steals a guitar from a fan who refuses to press charges explaining: "It's Keith, man..."

    December 18

    ...the Hospital for the Ruptured and Crippled opens this day in NYC in 1862 as America's first orthopedic hospital. To a grateful public in 1940 it is later renamed the Hospital for Special Surgery ...

    December 19

    ....later raided by the vice squad, the infamous and "awful" Seeley Dinner hosted by Herbert Barnum Seeley (grandson of P.T. Barnum) takes place this night in 1896 featuring a scantily clad exotic dancer, Ashea Wabe aka "Little Egypt", performing for about 20 male guests...

    Little Egypt
    December 19

    December 20

    ...a New York theater is named for a living actress for the first time when the Ethel Barrymore Theatre opens on Broadway tonight in 1928 with a production of Kingdom of God, starring (who else?) Ethel Barrymore...

    December 21

    ...Hannah Griffith departs this life today in 1802 and is buried in Trinity Church graveyard under a tombstone inscribed:

    Morn not for me, my husband dear / I am not dead but sleeping here / My debts are paid, the grave is free / Prepare yourself to follow me..."

    December 22

    ...a sensational trial erupts around the murder of Elma Sands who is found lifeless in the Spring Street well on Broadway this day in 1800, with sweetheart Levi Weeks standing trial for her murder. Defense counsel include legal hotshots Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr who acquit Weeks of all charges. Since then, Sands' ghost is said to haunt the Soho neighborhood in an apparition of a gray-haired women covered in a robe of moss and seaweed...

    December 23

    ...penned by New Yorker Clement C. Moore in his Chelsea neighborhood residence, "A Visit from St Nicholas" (better known today as 'Twas The Night Before Christmas) is first published this day in 1823...

    December 24

    ... R.H. Macy’s department store remains open until midnight tonight in 1867, taking in a record daily haul of $6,000 from last-minute shoppers...

    December 25

    ...under pressure from clergy and reform groups all of New York's lewd and lascivious nickelodeons and movie houses are temporarily shut down this day in 1908 ...

    December 26

    ... it's a White Christmas after all, as the Blizzard of '47 roars into town this day packing high winds and dropping a record 26.4 inches of the white stuff that shuts down mass transit and forces thousands to trudge home through "mile-high" snowdrifts...

    December 27

    ..with a Grand Stage measuring a cavernous 66 feet deep and 144 feet wide, Radio City Music Hall opens today in 1932...

    Blizzard of '47

    December 26

    December 28

    ... the crowd roars as Zero Mostel steps out on the stage at the Winter Garden Theater to reprise his role as Tevye, in the first major Broadway revival of Fiddler on the Roof this night in 1976...

    December 29

    ...more than 2,000 New Yorkers are lost to a yellow fever epidemic that raged throughout the summer - as the city's wealthy, who have evacuated to the countryside, start returning home this day in 1795...

    December 30

    ...it's the coldest December day on record as the temperature plunges to a frigid -13° today in 1917...

    December 31

    ...later to become famous around the world, the first ball welcoming in the New Year drops at midnight in Times Square this night in 1907. Happy New Year!....

    --> January

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