History

Michigan Dates in History - December

Contributor: Trish Stroh

From the death of Albert Kahn to the repeal of prohibition — December is full interesting anniversaries and memories for the Great Lakes State. How many of these did you know? 

 

December 1, 1925

Merger of the Detroit and Michigan Stove Works.

December 1, 1955

Rosa Parks refused to sit at the back of the bus in Montgomery, Alabama. Her arrest started a bus boycott that stimulated the career of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Civil Rights Movement. She moved to Detroit in 1957.

December 2, 1888

Detroit Milkmen met to try to raise the price of milk to 7 cents per quart.

December 6, 1928

The University of Michigan became the first Big Ten School to have an indoor hockey rink.

December 7, 1932

Actress Ellen Burstyn is born in Detroit.

December 8, 1942

Architect Albert Kahn dies at 73. Twelve of his buildings are recognized by official Michigan historical markers — Battle Creek Post Office, The Dearborn Inn, Detroit Arsenal Tank Plant, Detroit Free Press Building, The Detroit News Building, Edsel and Eleanor Ford House, Fisher Building, Ford Motor Company Lamp Factory, Highland Park Ford Plant, Packard Automotive Plant, Packard Proving Grounds, Willow Run.

December 9, 1935

The Lions defeat the New York Giants 26-7 for their first Championship.  The Lions also won championships in 1952, 1953, and 1957.

December 12, 1979

A basketball game between University of Michigan and the University of Detroit was the first event held in the Joe Lewis Arena in Detroit.

December 13, 1948

Musician Ted Nugent was born in Redford.

December 16, 1913

The Michigan Central depot in Detroit opened. At the time, it was the tallest railroad terminal in the world.

December 16, 1979

The Detroit Red Wings played their last game at Olympia Stadium tying Quebec 4–4. During 53 years at Olympia, the Red Wings had won 11 season championships and seven Stanley Cups.

December 18, 1927

Michigan’s highway department became the first to paint solid yellow lines to indicate no passing zones on curves and hills. Signs had to be posted telling out-of-state motorists what the lines meant.

December 20, 1971

Al Kaline signed a contract making him the first ballplayer in Detroit Tiger history to receive a salary of $100,000 for a season. He had complied a career batting average of .300 during his 19 years with the Tigers.

December 23, 1978

Michigan’s drinking age was again raised to 21 as a result of a constitutional amendment passed by voters concerned about drinking and driving by high school students.

December 24, 1814

The Treaty of Ghent was signed ending the War of 1812. The treaty provided for the return of captured territory including the return of Fort Mackinac to the United States. The British withdrew to Drummond Island, which they held until 1828.

December 30, 1933

With the repeal of prohibition, Governor William Comstock bought a bottle of Old Taylor, the first bottle of whiskey sold in the state.

December 30, 1934

Charles Westover known as singer/songwriter Del Shannon was born in Grand Rapids.

December 31, 1918

First 3 color hand-operated traffic signal in the world installed in Detroit.