On This Day December 20
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1803 – One of the greatest real estate deals in history is completed as France turns over more than a million square miles of the Louisiana Territory to the U.S. for a price equal to about $20 per square mile.
1963 – More than two years after construction of the Berlin Wall by East Germany to prevent citizens from fleeing its communist regime, the wall is temporarily opened for the holidays. Nearly 4,000 West Berliners are granted one-day passes to cross into East Berlin to visit relatives. The wall is sealed off again on January 5, 1964.
1989 – Michael Moore’s documentary “Roger & Me,” about the economic toll General Motors’ factory closings and layoffs had on his hometown of Flint, Michigan, opens in theaters. It launches Moore’s career as a filmmaker.