On this day, Dec. 3 …
1964: Police arrest some 800 students at the University of California at Berkeley, one day after the students stormed the administration building and staged a massive sit-in.
Also on this day:
- 1818: Illinois is admitted as the 21st state.
- 1828: Andrew Jackson is elected president of the United States by the Electoral College.
- 1833: Oberlin College in Ohio — the first truly coeducational school of higher learning in the United States — begins holding classes.
- 1926: English mystery writer Agatha Christie disappears after driving away from her home in Sunningdale, Berkshire. (Christie would turn up 11 days later at a hotel in Harrogate, Yorkshire.)
- 1947: The Tennessee Williams play “A Streetcar Named Desire” opens on Broadway.
- 1967: A surgical team in Cape Town, South Africa, led by Dr. Christiaan Barnard, performs the first human heart transplant on Louis Washkansky, who would live 18 days with the donor organ, which came from Denise Darvall, a 25-year-old bank clerk who had died in a traffic accident.
- 1979: Eleven people are killed in a crush of fans at Cincinnati’s Riverfront Coliseum, where the British rock group The Who was performing.
- 1980: Bernadine Dohrn, a former leader of the radical Weather Underground, surrenders to authorities in Chicago after more than a decade as a fugitive.
- 1984: Thousands of people die after a cloud of methyl isocyanate gas escapes from a pesticide plant operated by a Union Carbide subsidiary in Bhopal, India.
- 1991: Radicals in Lebanon release American hostage Alann Steen, who’d been held captive nearly five years.
- 1992: The first telephone text message is sent by British engineer Neil Papworth, who transmits the greeting “Merry Christmas” from his work computer in Newbury, Berkshire, to Vodafone executive Richard Jarvis’ mobile phone.
- 1999: Tori Murden of the United States becomes the first woman to row across the Atlantic Ocean alone as she arrived at the French Caribbean island of Guadeloupe, 81 days after leaving the Canary Islands near the coast of Africa.
- 2008: Theological conservatives upset by liberal views of U.S. Episcopalians and Canadian Anglicans form a rival North American province.
- 2013: A federal judge rules Detroit could use bankruptcy to cut employee pensions and relieve itself of other crushing debts, handing a defeat to the city’s unions and retirees and shifting the case into a delicate new phase.
- 2017: The second-largest U.S. drugstore chain, CVS, announces that it is buying Aetna, the third-largest health insurer, in order to push much deeper into customer care.
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