On December 4:
1619 38 colonists from Berkeley Parish in England disembarked in Virginia and gave thanks to God (this is considered by many to be the first Thanksgiving in the Americas).
The First Thanksgiving, painting by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris (1863–1930)
1745 Charles Edward Stuart’s army reached Derby, its furthest point during the second Jacobite rising.
1791 The first edition of The Observer, the world’s first Sunday newspaper, was published.
1795 Thomas Carlyle, Scottish writer and historian, was born.
1835 Samuel Butler, English writer, was born.
1872 The crewless American ship Mary Celeste was found by the British brig Dei Gratia (the ship had been abandoned for 9 days but was only slightly damaged).
1881 The first edition of the Los Angeles Times was published.
1892 Francisco Franco, dictator of Spain, was born.
1918 U.S. President Woodrow Wilson sailed for the World War I peace talks in Versailles, becoming the first US president to travel to Europe while in office.
1930 Ronnie Corbett, Scottish actor, was born.
1949 Pamela Stephenson, New Zealand-born actress, was born.
1952 Great Smog of 1952: A cold fog descended upon London, combining with air pollution and killing at least 12,000 in the following months.
1954 The first Burger King opened in Miami, Florida.
1971 The Montreux Casino in Switzerland was set ablaze by someone wielding a flare gun during a Frank Zappa concert; the incident would be noted in the Deep Purple song “Smoke on the Water“.
1978 Dianne Feinstein became San Francisco, California’s first female mayor.
1966 The state monopoly on commercial radio broadcasting was challenged by the pirate station Radio Hauraki’s first scheduled transmission from the vessel Tiri in the Colville Channel.
1980 English rock group Led Zeppelin officially disbandsed following the death of drummer John Bonham on September 25th.
Led Zeppelin in 1968. From left to right: John Bonham, Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones
1991 Journalist Terry A. Anderson was released after 7 years in captivity as a hostage in Beirut.
1991 Captain Mark Pyle piloted Clipper Goodwill, a Pan American World Airways Boeing 727-221ADV, to Miami International Airport ending 64 years of Pan Am operations.
Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia.