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This Day at Law

Simon Bolivar dies

On December 17, 1830, South American revolutionary Simon Bolivar died in Colombia. During his lifetime, Bolivar led successful revolutions against Spanish colonial rule throughout South America. His efforts led to the independence of the modern-day nations of Colombia, Peru, Venezuela, Panama, Ecuador and Bolivia, a nation named in his honor.

First impeachment trial began in US Senate

On December 17, 1798, the US Senate began its first impeachment trial. Senator William Blount of Tennessee, a land speculator, was accused of plotting with England to wrest control of Florida from Spain. The Senate ultimately dismissed the charges for lack of jurisdiction - and, perhaps incidentally, lack of Blount, who had gone to Tennessee and had refused to return to the Senate for trial. Read more on the attempted arrest of William Blount.

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