On this Day in History: December 17

2014 – The United States and Cuba re-establish diplomatic relations after severing them 55 years ago.
2003 – SpaceShipOne, piloted by Brian Binnie, makes its first powered and first supersonic flight.
1989 – The Simpsons, America’s longest-running sitcom, debuts on FOX television.
1987 – Final Fantasy is released in Japan on the Famicon, marking the start of the Final Fantasy series and saving Square from bankruptcy.
1972 – WGVC, which is now WUCX, TV channel 35 in Grand Rapids, Michigan – part of PBS – airs its first broadcast.
1971 – The 7th James Bond film, Diamonds are Forever, the last starring Sean Conner, is first released in West Germany.
1969 – The United States Air Force closes its study of UFOs, called Project Blue Book.
1967 – WEDW TV channel 49 in Bridgeport, Connecticut (PBS) begins broadcasting.
1957 – The last episode of The Nat King Cole Show airs on NBC due to lack of corporate sponsorship. Advertisers would not support a show starring an African American, at that time, in America.
1954 – WEAU TV channel 13 in Eau Claire, WI (NBC) begins broadcasting
1951 – The American Civil Rights Congress delivers “We Charge Genocide: The Crime of Government Against the Negro People” to the United Nations. The paper accuses the United States government of genocide based on the UN Genocide Convention.
1947 – WEWS TV channel 5 in Cleveland, Ohio (ABC) begins broadcasting
1943 – Chinese immigrants are again permitted to become citizens of the United States with the repealing of the Act of 1882 and the introduction of the Magnuson Act.
1919 – Uruguay becomes a signatory to the Buenos Aires copyright treaty.
1896 – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania’s Schenley Park Casino, which was the first multi-purpose arena with the technology to create an artificial ice surface in North America, is destroyed in a fire.
1892 – First issue of Vogue is published
497 BC – The first Saturnalia festival, honoring the deity Saturn, was celebrated in ancient Rome.

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