1787 - On this day in history, NJ became the third state to ratify the Constitution.
1862 - The first orthopedic hospital was organized in New York City. It was called the Hospital for Ruptured and Crippled.
1865 - Today in history, slavery was abolished with the 13th Amendment to the US Constitution being ratified.
1898 - A new automobile speed record was set at 39 mph (63 KPH).
1903 - On this day in history, The Panama Canal Zone was acquired 'in perpetuity' by the United States for an annual rent.
1917 - The Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution was passed by the United States Congress.
1936 - Today in history, Su-Lin, the first giant panda to come from China, arrived in San Francisco, California. The bear was sold to the Brookfield Zoo.
1944 - The Supreme Court upheld the wartime relocation of Japanese-Americans, but additionally stated that loyal Americans of Japanese ancestry could not be detained.
1957 - On this day in history, The Shippingport Atomic Power Station in PA went online. It was the first nuclear facility to generate electricity in the USA.
1972 - The US began the heaviest bombing of North Vietnam during the Vietnam War. The attack ended 12 days later.
1973 - Today in history, the IRA launched its Christmas bombing campaign in London.
1987 - Ivan F. Boesky was sentenced to three years in prison for plotting Wall Street's biggest insider-trading scandal.
1998 - On this day in history, The House of Representatives began the debate on four articles of impeachment dealing with President Bill Clinton. This is the second time in history that this process had begun.
1998 - SC proceeded with the 500th execution in the US, since capital punishment was restored.
2002 - Today in history, nine competing designs for the World Trade Center site were unveiled. The Lower Manhattan Development Corp. expected to choose a design by January 31, 2003.
SPORTS - Today in History, December 18th
1963 - Ron Clarke set a world record when he ran six miles in 28 minutes and 15.6 seconds.
1979 - On this day in history, the sound barrier was broken on land for the first time by Stanley Barrett when he drove at 739.6 mph.
MUSIC HISTORY - Today in History, December 18th
1737 - Antonio Stradivari, died in Cremona, Italy. He is recognized as the most renowned violin maker in history.
1892 - Today in history, Tchaikovsky's "The Nutcracker Suite" publicly premiered in St. Petersburg, Russia.
1920 - Conductor Arturo Toscanini made his first recording for Victor Records.
1964 - On this day in history, funeral services were held in Chicago for Sam Cooke.
1984 - Madonna's "Like a Virgin was the No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit. The song was Madonna's first No. 1 hit.
2003 - Today in history, Michael Jackson was charged with seven counts of molesting a child under 14 and two counts of supplying the child with "an intoxicating agent." Jackson's lawyer denounced the allegations and said they were driven by money and revenge.