"Silent Night" is first performed, the Library of Congress burns, NORAD begins tracking Santa, and man orbits the Moon for the first time, all on this day.
1997: Japanese actor Toshiro Mifune, best known for his 16-film collaboration with filmmaker Akira Kurosawa, from 1948 to 1965 in works such as "Rashomon" (pictured), "Seven Samurai," "Throne of Blood" and "Yojimbo," dies of multiple organ failure at the age of 77 in Tokyo, Japan.
Washington State National Guard
Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports/Reuters
Sony Pictures Television
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