1986—In San Diego, Cara Evelyn Knott is strangled by on-duty Highway Patrolman Craig Alan Peyer.
1981—Supreme Court AssociateJustice William H. Rehnquist checks into a hospital to kick his Placidyl™ habit and end the hallucinations.
1953—Mass. bans EC Comics’ version of “The Night Before Christmas.” Illustrated by Will Elder, it features a just-divorced Santa driving a Cadillac sled and giving away poison.
1900—Carrie Nation hatchets-up her first saloon, at the Carey Hotel, in Wichita, Kan.
1895—In Bill Curtis’s St. Louis saloon, William “Billy” Lyons foolishly—and fatally—grabs “Stagger Lee” Shelton’s brand new Stetson hat.
1827—Georgia proclaims “the lands of Georgia belong to her absolutely. The Indians are tenants at her will.” Indulgent solons give the indigenous inhabitants three years to get west of the Mississippi.
1763—Sixteen of the few living Conestoga Indians, huddled for protection in the Lancaster, Pa. workhouse, are mysteriously deserted by their guards. A mob known as “the Paxton Boys” hacks 14 of them, mostly children, to death. There is no investigation; no one is ever charged.
1739—A large crowd gathers to witness New Hampshire’s first executions: Sarah Simpson and Penelope Kenny are hanged in Portsmouth for infanticide.