This Day in History – December 27

Today is the 361st day of 2022. There will be four days left in the year.


2004: A massive tsunami triggered by earthquakes tears across the Indian Ocean, devastating coastal communities in 12 countries, killing at least 216,000 people, and leaving more than a million people homeless.


1492: Explorer Christopher Columbus founds a European settlement on the island of Hispaniola.

1748: France and Austria sign treaty about Southern Netherlands.

1773 Expulsion of tea ships from Philadelphia

1865: American inventor James H Nason receives patent for the coffee percolator.

1901: The Uganda Railway from Mombasa to Lake Victoria is completed.

1908: African-American boxer Jack Johnson stops Canadian defending champion Tommy Burns in the 14th round in Sydney, Australia, to become the first black man to win world heavyweight title; Burns is favourite in 12th title defence but Johnson dominates before police stop the bout

1962: Eight East Germans escape to West Berlin by crashing a bus through barriers at border checkpoint.

1971: Sixteen Vietnam War veterans seize the Statue of Liberty in New York harbour to dramatise their anti-war stand.

1977: Argentina’s Government announces a holiday amnesty, freeing 432 political prisoners of the 3,607 being held under a state of siege imposed in March 1976.

1978: India’s former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi is released from jail.

1988 Anti-African student rebellion in Nanjing, China

1991: Algeria holds its first multi-party parliamentary elections since independence from France in 1962.

1992: Yugoslav Prime Minister Milan Panic concedes defeat in Serbian presidential elections and congratulates the incumbent, hard-liner Slobodan Milosevic.

1995: Paul Adams becomes South Africa’s youngest Test Cricket player at 18 years 340 days

1996: Six-year-old beauty queen JonBenét Ramsey is found beaten and strangled in the basement of her family’s home in Boulder, Colorado

1997: The Soufriere Hills volcano on the island of Montserrat explodes, creating a small tsunami offshore.

2004: A large earthquake shakes the Indian Ocean floor west of the island of Sumatra, triggering a devastating tsunami that swamped coastal areas from Thailand to Africa and killed more than 200,000 people.

2012: China opens the world’s longest high speed rail route from Beijing to Guangzhou.

2015: Floods in Paraguay, Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay displace 150,000, blamed on El Nino.

2018: American Colin O’Brady is the first person to cross Antarctica solo and unassisted after 54 days at the Ross Ice Shelf


Charles Babbage, English mathematician and inventor of first computer (1791-1871); George Romney, English artist (1734-1802); Henry Miller, US writer (1891-1980); Mao Tse-tung, Chinese leader (1893-1976); Leopold Mannes, US co-developer of Kodachrome film (1899-1964)

— AP

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