On This Date

In 1815: The constitution for the Congress Kingdom of Poland was signed by Russian Czar Alexander I, who was also king of Poland.

In 1901: The U.S. Army War College was established in Washington, D.C.

In 1910: New York’s Pennsylvania Station officially opened.

In 1924: Macy’s first Thanksgiving Day parade – billed as a “Christmas Parade” – took place in New York.

In 1939: The play “Key Largo,” by Maxwell Anderson, opened at the Ethel Barrymore Theater in New York.

In 1942: During World War II, the Vichy French navy scuttled its ships and submarines in Toulon to keep them out of the hands of German troops.

In 1945: General George C. Marshall was named special U.S. envoy to China by President Harry S. Truman to try to end hostilities between the Nationalists and the Communists.

In 1953: Playwright Eugene O’Neill died in Boston at age 65.

In 1973: The Senate voted 92-3 to confirm Gerald R. Ford as vice president, succeeding Spiro T. Agnew, who’d resigned.

In 1978: San Francisco Mayor George Moscone and City Supervisor Harvey Milk, a gay-rights activist, were shot to death inside City Hall by former supervisor Dan White. (White served five years for manslaughter; he committed suicide in Oct. 1985.)

In 1983: 181 people were killed when a Colombian Avianca Airlines Boeing 747 crashed near Madrid’s Barajas airport.

In 1989: A bomb blamed on drug traffickers destroyed a Colombian Avianca Boeing 727, killing all 107 people on board and three people on the ground.

In 2006: President George W. Bush, stopping over in Estonia en route to a NATO summit in Latvia and meetings in Jordan, intensified diplomatic efforts to quell rising violence in Iraq and Afghanistan. An early morning fire burned down a group home for the elderly and mentally ill in Anderson, Missouri, killing 10 residents and a caretaker. (Faulty wiring was cited as the likely cause of the blaze.)