December 23rd

1994
Organized crime boss Whitey Bulger goes into hiding. The convicted murderer stayed out of sight for 16 years causing great embarrassment to the American Federal Bureau of Investigations. He was finally arrested in 2011.
Whitey Bulger
1990
Slovenian referendum on independence from Yugoslavia. The Eastern European country had joined the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia as a socialist republic state in 1945. Actual independence for the country did not occur until June of 1991, when the Slovenians rejected Yugoslavian interference in the form of a 10-day war that ended on July 7, 1991. A new constitution for the country came into force on December 23, 1991.
Slovenian independence referendum, 1990
1986
Dick Rutan and Jeana Yeager completed the first non-stop, around-the-world flight without refueling aboard the experimental airplane Voyager.
Rutan Voyager
1975
Metric Conversion Act signed by U.S. President Gerald Ford. The act made the metric system the preferred system of weights and measures in the United States. Today, the metric system is predominantly only used by scientists and academics in the U.S. Common people tend to follow the customary units that were developed before American Independence. The U.S. is 1 of 3 countries in the world that do not use the metric system. Liberia and Burma are the other two.
Metric Conversion Act
1958
Tokyo Tower opened to the public. At 333 meters tall, it is world's tallest, self-supported steel tower. It is based on the Eiffel Tower and is used for communication purposes.
Tokyo Tower
1954
The first human kidney transplant is performed by Dr. Joseph E. Murray at Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts.
Joseph Murray
1948
Hideki Tojo and six other Japanese war leaders were executed.
Hideki Tojo
1947
The transistor was unveiled by American physicists John Bardeen, Walter H. Brattain, and William Shockley.
John Bardeen
1920
Government of Ireland Act / Home Rule Act passed partitioning Ireland.
Government of Ireland Act 1920
1913
President Woodrow Wilson signed the act creating the Federal Reserve System.
Federal Reserve Act
1888
Vincent van Gogh cuts off his ear. It is now believed that the Dutch painter was suffering from a psychotic break at the time of the event. After cutting off his left ear, van Gogh bandaged his head and took the severed ear to a prostitute for safekeeping.
Vincent van Gogh
1823
The poem "A Visit from St. Nicholas" ("'Twas the night before Christmas"), written by either Clement C. Moore or Maj. Henry Livingston, Jr., was published in the Troy Sentinel of New York.
1823 in poetry
1788
Maryland voted to cede a 100-square-mile area for the District of Columbia.
History of Washington, D.C.
1783
US General George Washington resigns his military commission as Commander-in-Chief of the Army to Congress.
Military career of George Washington
1688
King James II, the last Roman Catholic British monarch flees to France from William of Orange.
James II of England
962
Byzantine-Arab Wars: Under the future Emperor Nicephorus Phocas, Byzantine troops stormed city of Aleppo, recovering the tattered tunic of John the Baptist.
Talk:Byzantine–Arab wars (780–1180)