Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation.
The ball signifying the New Year was dropped for the first time at Times Square in New York City.
The world's first airline, St. Petersburg Tampa Airboat Line, starts operation in St. Petersburg, Florida.
John Mitchell, H. R. Haldeman, and John Ehrlichman were convicted of obstruction of justice in the Watergate affair.
The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) went into effect.
Euro coins and notes went into circulation in twelve European nations.