The shortest day of the year is the winter solstice, December 21. Yet the year’s earliest sunsets came a few days ago for those around the latitude of Miami. It will occur in a few days for those at the latitude of Dallas, and a few days later for those farther north.
Although the shortest day of the year, the winter solstice, is more than two weeks away, most of the United States is seeing the earliest sunsets of the year about now. The date of earliest sunset varies with latitude, with the date getting later as you go north.