On This Day in History December 20

December 20 – Events:

  • 69 – Vespasian, formerly a general under Nero, enters Rome to claim the title of emperor.
  • 1192 – Richard the Lion-Heart is captured and imprisoned by Leopold V of Austria on his way home to England after signing a treaty with Saladin ending the crusade.
  • 1522 – Suleiman the Magnificent accepts the surrender of the surviving Knights of Rhodes, who are allowed to evacuate. They eventually settle on Malta and become known as the Knights of Malta.
  • 1606 – The Virginia Company loads three ships with settlers and sets sail to establish Jamestown, Virginia, the first permanent English settlement in the Americas.
  • 1803 – The Louisiana Purchase is completed at a ceremony in New Orleans.
  • 1835 – First signing of the Texas Declaration of Independence at Goliad, Texas.
  • 1860 – South Carolina becomes the first state to secede from the United States.
  • 1915 – World War I: Last Australian troops evacuated from Gallipoli.
  • 1917 – Cheka, the first Soviet secret police, is founded.
  • 1941 – World War II: First battle of the American Volunteer Group, better known as the “Flying Tigers” in Kunming, China.
  • 1942 – World War II: Bombing of Calcutta by the Japanese.
  • 1951 – The EBR-1 in Arco, Idaho becomes the first nuclear power plant to generate electricity for the first time. The electricity powered four light bulbs.
  • 1952 – United States Air Force C-124 crashes and burns in Moses Lake, Washington killing 87.
  • 1955 – Cardiff is proclaimed the capital city of Wales, United Kingdom.
  • 1960 – National Front for the Liberation of Vietnam is formed.
  • 1968 – The Zodiac Killer kills Betty Lou Jenson and David Faraday in Vallejo, California.
  • 1973 – The Spanish Prime Minister, Admiral Luis Carrero Blanco, is assassinated by a car bomb attack in Madrid.
  • 1984 – The Summit tunnel fire is the largest underground fire in history, as a freight train carrying over 1 million litres of petrol derails near the town of Todmorden in the Pennines.
  • 1988 – The United Nations Convention Against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances is signed in Vienna.
  • 1989 – United States invasion of Panama: The United States sends troops into Panama to overthrow government of Manuel Noriega.
  • 1991 – A Missouri court sentences the Palestinian militant Zein Isa and his wife Maria to death for the honor killing of their daughter Palestina.
  • 1995 – NATO begins peacekeeping in Bosnia.
  • 1995 – American Airlines Flight 965, a Boeing 757, crashes into a mountain 50 km north of Cali, Colombia killing 160.
  • 1995 – The Democratic Social Movement is founded in Greece.
  • 1996 – NeXT merges with Apple Computer, starting the path to Mac OS X.
  • 1999 – Macau is handed over to the People’s Republic of China by Portugal.
  • 2001 – Argentine economic crisis: President of Argentina Fernando de la Rúa is forced out of office.
  • 2002 – US Senator Trent Lott resigns as majority leader.
  • 2005 – New York City transit strike: New York City’s Transport Workers Union Local 100 goes on strike, shutting down all New York City Subway and Bus services.
  • 2005 – US District Court Judge John E. Jones III rules against mandating the teaching of “intelligent design” in his ruling of Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District.
  • 2006 – A judge rules against the death penalty in the case of Naveed Haq, a man convicted in the shooting death and injuries at the Jewish Federation in Seattle.
  • 2007 – Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II becomes the oldest ever monarch of the United Kingdom, surpassing Queen Victoria, who lived for 81 years, 7 months and 29 days.
  • 2007 – The Lakota Indians send a letter to the United States State Department declaring their secession from the union.
  • 2007 – The painting Portrait of Suzanne Bloch (1904), by the Spanish artist Pablo Picasso, was stolen from the São Paulo Museum of Art, along with O Lavrador de Café, by the major Brazilian modernist painter Candido Portinari.

December 20 – Birthdays:

  • 1494 – Oronce Finé, French mathematician (d. 1555)
  • 1537 – King John III of Sweden (d. 1592)
  • 1566 – Edward Wightman, English Baptist preacher (d. 1612)
  • 1579 – (baptized) John Fletcher, English playwright (d. 1625)
  • 1626 – Veit Ludwig von Seckendorff, German statesman (d. 1692)
  • 1629 – Pieter de Hooch, Dutch painter (d. 1684)
  • 1717 – Charles Gravier, comte de Vergennes, French statesman and diplomat (d. 1787)
  • 1786 – Pietro Raimondi, Italian composer (d. 1853)
  • 1792 – Nicolas Charlet, French painter (d. 1845)
  • 1833 – Samuel Mudd, American physician (d. 1883)
  • 1838 – Edwin Abbott Abbott, English schoolmaster, theologian, and author (d. 1926)
  • 1841 – Ferdinand Buisson, French pacifist, recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize (d. 1932)
  • 1860 – Dan Leno, English entertainer (d. 1904)
  • 1861 – Ivana Kobilca, Slovenian painter (d. 1926)
  • 1865 – Elsie De Wolfe, American socialite and interior decorator (d. 1950)
  • 1868 – Harvey Firestone, American automobile pioneer (d. 1938)
  • 1873 – Kwan-Ichi Asakawa, Japanese historian(d. 1948)
  • 1881 – Branch Rickey, baseball executive (d. 1965)
  • 1886 – Hazel Hotchkiss Wightman, American tennis player (d. 1974)
  • 1888 – Fred Merkle, American baseball figure (d. 1958)
  • 1890 – Yvonne Arnaud, French-born actress (d. 1958)
  • 1890 – Jaroslav Heyrovský, Czech chemist, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1967)
  • 1894 – Sir Robert Menzies, twelfth Prime Minister of Australia (d. 1978)
  • 1898 – Irene Dunne, American actress (d. 1990)
  • 1901 – Robert Van de Graaff, American physicist and inventor (d. 1967)
  • 1902 – Sidney Hook, American philosopher (d. 1989)
  • 1902 – George Edward Alexander Windsor, Duke of Kent (d. 1942)
  • 1904 – Spud Davis, baseball player (d. 1984)
  • 1907 – Paul Francis Webster, songwriter (d. 1984)
  • 1908 – Dennis Morgan, American actor (d. 1994)
  • 1909 – Vakkom Majeed, Indian politician (d. 2000)
  • 1911 – Hortense Calisher, American author
  • 1916 – Michel Chartrand, Quebec union leader
  • 1917 – David Bohm, American-born physicist, philosopher, and neuropsychologist (d. 1992)
  • 1918 – Jean Marchand, French Canadian trade unionist and politician (d. 1988)
  • 1918 – Audrey Totter, American actress
  • 1922 – George Roy Hill, American film director (d. 2002)
  • 1922 – Beverly Pepper, American sculptor and painter
  • 1924 – Charlie Callas, American comedian
  • 1924 – Judy LaMarsh, Canadian politician and broadcaster (d. 1980)
  • 1925 – Benito Lorenzi, Italian footballer (d. 2007)
  • 1925 – Mahathir bin Mohamad, Prime Minister of Malaysia
  • 1926 – Sir Geoffrey Howe, British politician
  • 1926 – Otto Graf Lambsdorff, German politician
  • 1927 – Kim Young-sam, President of South Korea
  • 1931 – Mala Powers, American film actress (d. 2007)
  • 1933 – Jean Carnahan, U.S. Senator
  • 1933 – Rik Van Looy, Belgian cyclist
  • 1938 – John Harbison, American composer
  • 1944 – Bobby Colomby, American musician (Blood, Sweat & Tears)
  • 1944 – Jean Fergusson, English actress
  • 1945 – Peter Criss, American drummer and singer (Kiss)
  • 1946 – Uri Geller, Israeli psychic
  • 1946 – John Spencer, American actor (d. 2005)
  • 1946 – Dick Wolf, American television series creator
  • 1947 – Gigliola Cinquetti, Italian singer
  • 1948 – Alan Parsons, British music producer and artist
  • 1949 – Soumaïla Cissé, Malian politician
  • 1949 – Cecil Cooper, Major League baseball player
  • 1951 – Gilbert Montagné, French musician
  • 1951 – Peter May, Scottish novelist and scriptwriter
  • 1952 – Jenny Agutter, English actress
  • 1954 – Michael Badalucco, American actor
  • 1954 – Sandra Cisneros, American writer
  • 1955 – Ed Kuepper, German-born Australian musician (The Saints, Laughing Clowns)
  • 1956 – Blanche Baker, American actress
  • 1956 – Junji Hirata, Japanese professional wrestler
  • 1957 – Billy Bragg, English singer and songwriter
  • 1957 – Mike Watt, American bassist
  • 1957 – Stephen Bicknell, British organ builder and scholar (d. 2007)
  • 1957 – Joyce Hyser, American actress
  • 1957 – Anna Vissi, Greek-Cypriot singer
  • 1958 – Steve Sailer, American political commentator
  • 1960 – Nalo Hopkinson, Canadian writer
  • 1963 – Infanta Elena of Spain
  • 1963 – Joel Gretsch, American actor
  • 1965 – Robert Cavanah, Scottish actor
  • 1965 – Rich Gannon, American football player
  • 1966 – Matt Neal , British Race Driver
  • 1966 – Chris Robinson, American singer (Black Crowes)
  • 1966 – Myrra Malmberg, Swedish singer
  • 1968 – Karl Wendlinger, Austrian racing driver
  • 1968 – Joe Cornish, British comedian
  • 1968 – Phil Andrews, British racing driver
  • 1970 – Nicole DeBoer, Canadian actress
  • 1973 – Cory Stillman, National Hockey League forward
  • 1974 – Die, Japanese musician (Dir en grey)
  • 1975 – Bartosz Bosacki, Polish footballer
  • 1975 – Jaydy Michel, Mexican model
  • 1976 – Jang Hyuk, Korean actor
  • 1976 – Aubrey Huff, American baseball player
  • 1976 – Adam Powell, Neopets creator
  • 1976 – Ramon Stoppelenburg, world traveler and Dutch author
  • 1977 – Saukrates, Canadian rapper
  • 1978 – Geremi Njitap, Cameroon footballer
  • 1978 – Andrei Markov, Russian hockey player
  • 1979 – David DeJesus, American baseball player
  • 1979 – Michael Rogers, Australian cyclist
  • 1980 – Ashley Cole, English footballer
  • 1980 – Anthony “Tony” da Silva, French-Portuguese footballer
  • 1981 – Roy Williams, American football player
  • 1981 – James Shields, American baseball player
  • 1981 – Chris Edwards, British musician (Kasabian)
  • 1982 – David Wright, baseball player
  • 1982 – Kasper Klausen, Danish footballer
  • 1983 – Jonah Hill, American actor
  • 1983 – Lara Stone, Dutch model
  • 1983 – Lucy Pinder, British model
  • 1983 – Adrián Varela, Mexican singer
  • 1987 – Tariel Zintiridis, Greek judoka
  • 1989 – Virgilio Falco, Italian politician
  • 1990 – Joanna “JoJo” Levesque American pop/R&B Singer

December 20 – Deaths:

  • 217 – Pope Zephyrinus
  • 860 – King Ethelbald of Wessex
  • 910 – Alfonso III of Leon
  • 1022 – Elvira Mendes, wife of Alfonso V of Castile (b. 996)
  • 1355 – Stefan Dušan, Serb king and tsar (b. circa 1308)
  • 1494 – Matteo Maria Boiardo, Italian poet
  • 1524 – Thomas Linacre, English scholar and physician
  • 1539 – Johannes Lupi, Flemish composer
  • 1590 – Ambroise Paré, French physician (b. 1510)
  • 1722 – Kangxi Emperor of China (b. 1654)
  • 1723 – Augustus Quirinus Rivinus (b. 1652)
  • 1740 – Richard Boyle, 2nd Viscount Shannon, English military officer and statesman (b. 1675)
  • 1768 – Carlo Innocenzio Maria Frugoni, Italian poet (b. 1692)
  • 1783 – Antonio Soler, Spanish composer (b. 1729)
  • 1812 – Sacagawea, Shoshone guide for the Lewis and Clark Expedition
  • 1856 – Francesco Bentivegna, Italian revolutionary (b. 1820)
  • 1862 – Robert Knox
  • 1917 – Lucien Petit-Breton, Argentine-French cyclist (b. 1882)
  • 1921 – Hans Hartwig von Beseler, German general (b. 1850)
  • 1929 – Émile Loubet, 7th President of France (b.1838)
  • 1935 – Martin O’Meara, Australian soldier (b. 1882)
  • 1937 – Erich Ludendorff, German general (b. 1865)
  • 1941 – Igor Severyanin, Russian poet (b. 1887)
  • 1954 – James Hilton, British author (b. 1900)
  • 1956 – Ramon Carrillo, Argentine neuroscientist and Public Health minister (b. 1906)
  • 1961 – Moss Hart, American dramatist (b. 1904)
  • 1961 – Earle Page, eleventh Prime Minister of Australia (b. 1880)
  • 1968 – John Steinbeck, American writer, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1902)
  • 1973 – Luis Carrero Blanco, Prime Minister of Spain (assassinated) (b. 1903)
  • 1973 – Bobby Darin, American singer (b. 1936)
  • 1974 – André Jolivet, French composer (b. 1905)
  • 1976 – Richard J. Daley, Mayor of Chicago (b. 1902)
  • 1981 – Dimitris Rontiris, Greek actor and director (b. 1899)
  • 1982 – Arthur Rubinstein, Polish-born pianist (b. 1887)
  • 1984 – Gonzalo Márquez, Venezuelan Major League Baseball player (b. 1946)
  • 1986 – Joe DeSa, baseball player (b. 1959)
  • 1988 – Alphonse Ouimet, Canadian television pioneer, president of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (b. 1908)
  • 1989 – Kurt Böhme, German bass (b. 1908)
  • 1991 – Simone Beck, French chef (b. 1904)
  • 1994 – Dean Rusk, United States Secretary of State (b. 1909)
  • 1996 – Carl Sagan, American astronomer and writer (b. 1934)
  • 1997 – Denise Levertov, English-born poet (b. 1923)
  • 1997 – Juzo Itami, Japanese actor and director (b. 1933)
  • 1997 – Dawn Steel, American film producer (b. 1946)
  • 1998 – Irene Hervey, American actress (b. 1910)
  • 1998 – Alan Lloyd Hodgkin, British scientist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (b. 1916)
  • 1999 – Hank Snow, Canadian singer (b. 1914)
  • 1999 – Riccardo Freda, Italian film director (b. 1909)
  • 2000 – Mirza Ghulam Hafiz, Bangladesh statesman, politician, and philanthropist (b. 1920)
  • 2001 – Foster Brooks, American actor and comedian (b. 1912)
  • 2001 – Léopold Sédar Senghor, first President of Senegal (b. 1906)
  • 2005 – Maniam Moorthy, member of the first Malaysian team to summit Mount Everest
  • 2006 – Shi Yuejun, Chinese serial killer. Executed.

December 20 – Holidays:

  • R.C. Saints – Saint Dominic of Silos, O Clavis, Ursicinus of Saint-Ursanne

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On This Day in History December 19

December 19 – Events:

  • 324 – Licinius abdicates his position as Roman Emperor.
  • 1154- Henry II of England is crowned at Westminster Abbey.
  • 1490 – Anne of Brittany is married to Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor by proxy.
  • 1606 – The Susan Constant, the Godspeed, and the Discovery depart England carrying settlers who, at Jamestown, Virginia, found the first of the thirteen colonies that became the United States.
  • 1776 – Thomas Paine publishes one of a series of pamphlets in the Pennsylvania Journal titled The American Crisis.
  • 1777 – American Revolutionary War: George Washington’s Continental Army goes into winter quarters at Valley Forge, Pennsylvania.
  • 1828 – Nullification Crisis: Vice President of the United States John C. Calhoun pens the South Carolina Exposition and Protest, protesting the Tariff of 1828.
  • 1835 – The first issue of The Blade newspaper is published in Toledo, Ohio.
  • 1907 – A group of 239 coal miners die during a mine explosion in Jacobs Creek, Pennsylvania.
  • 1912 – William H. Van Schaick, captain of the steamship General Slocum which caught fire and killed over 1,000 people, is pardoned by U.S. President William Howard Taft after three-and-a-half-years in Sing Sing prison.
  • 1916 – World War I: Battle of Verdun – On the Western Front, the French Army successfully holds off the German Army and drives it back to its starting position.
  • 1920 – King Constantine I is restored as King of the Hellenes after the death of his son Alexander I of Greece and a plebiscite.
  • 1924 – The last Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost is sold in London, England.
  • 1941 – World War II: Adolf Hitler becomes Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the German Army.
  • 1961 – India annexes Daman and Diu, part of Portuguese India.
  • 1967 – Prime Minister of Australia Harold Holt is officially presumed dead.
  • 1972 – Apollo program: The last manned lunar flight, Apollo 17, crewed by Eugene Cernan, Ron Evans and Harrison Schmitt, returns to Earth.
  • 1981 – Sixteen lives are lost when the Penlee lifeboat goes to the aid of the stricken coaster Union Star in heavy seas.
  • 1983 – The original FIFA World Cup trophy, the Jules Rimet Trophy, is stolen from the headquarters of the Brazilian Football Confederation in Rio de Janeiro.
  • 1984 – The Sino-British Joint Declaration, stating that the People’s Republic of China would resume the exercise of sovereignty over Hong Kong and the United Kingdom would restore Hong Kong to China with effect from July 1, 1997 is signed in Beijing by Deng Xiaoping and Margaret Thatcher.
  • 1986 – Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev releases Andrei Sakharov and his wife from internal exile in Gorky.
  • 1994 – Rolls-Royce announces its future cars will feature V12 engine which will be produced by BMW.
  • 1997 – Silkair Flight 185 crashes into the Musi River, near Palembang in Indonesia, killing 104.
  • 1998 – Lewinsky scandal: The United States House of Representatives forwards articles I and III of impeachment against President Bill Clinton to the Senate.
  • 2000 – The Leninist Guerrilla Units wing of the Communist Labour Party of Turkey/Leninist attack a Nationalist Movement Party office in Istanbul, killing one person and injuring three.
  • 2001 – A record high barometric pressure of 1085.6 hPa (32.06 inHg) is recorded at Tosontsengel, Khövsgöl Province, Mongolia.
  • 2001 – Argentine economic crisis: December 2001 riots – Riots erupt in Buenos Aires after Domingo Cavallo’s corralito measures restrict the withdrawal of cash from bank deposits.
  • 2003 – Nepal financial crisis leads hundreds to protest outside of palace.

December 19 – Birthdays:

  • 1554 – Philip William, Prince of Orange (d. 1618)
  • 1683 – Philip V of Spain (d. 1746)
  • 1699 – William Bowyer, English printer (d. 1777)
  • 1714 – John Winthrop, American astronomer (d. 1779)
  • 1778 – Princess Marie-Thérèse-Charlotte, eldest child of Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI (d. 1851)
  • 1784 – Marcus Morton, 16th and 18th Governor of Massachusetts (d. 1864)
  • 1813 – Thomas Andrews, Irish chemist (d. 1885)
  • 1817 – James J. Archer, Confederate general (d. 1904)
  • 1831 – Bernice Pauahi Bishop, Hawaiian philanthropist (d. 1884)
  • 1852 – Albert Abraham Michelson, Prussian-born American physicist, Nobel laureate (d. 1931)
  • 1853 – Charles Fitzpatrick, Canadian politician, lieutenant-governor of Quebec (d. 1942)
  • 1865 – Minnie Maddern Fiske, American actress (d. 1932)
  • 1885 – Joe “King” Oliver, American jazz musician (d. 1938)
  • 1888 – Fritz Reiner, Hungarian-born American conductor (d. 1963)
  • 1894 – Ford Frick, American baseball commissioner (d. 1978)
  • 1901 – Rudolf Hell, German inventor (d. 2002)
  • 1902 – Sir Ralph Richardson, English actor (d. 1983)
  • 1903 – George Davis Snell, American geneticist, Nobel laureate (d. 1996)
  • 1906 – Leonid Brezhnev, leader of the Soviet Union (d. 1982)
  • 1907 – Jimmy McLarnin, former Welterweight Champion (d. 2004)
  • 1909 – W.A. Criswell, American (Baptist) preacher (d. 2002)
  • 1910 – Jean Genet, French writer (d. 1986)
  • 1915 – Édith Piaf, French singer and actress (d. 1963)
  • 1918 – Professor Longhair, American blues musician (d. 1980)
  • 1920 – Little Jimmy Dickens, American country singer
  • 1920 – David Susskind, American TV talk show host (d. 1987)
  • 1922 – Eamonn Andrews, Irish-born television presenter (d. 1987)
  • 1923 – Gordon Jackson, Scottish actor (d. 1990)
  • 1924 – Carlo Chiti, Italian race car engineer (d. 1994)
  • 1924 – Doug Harvey, Canadian ice hockey player (d. 1989)
  • 1924 – Gary Morton, second husband of Lucille Ball (d. 1999)
  • 1924 – Edmund Purdom, English actor
  • 1925 – Tankred Dorst, German dramatist
  • 1925 – Robert B. Sherman, American songwriter
  • 1926 – Bobby Layne, American football player (d. 1986)
  • 1926 – Herb Stempel, American game show contestant
  • 1927 – James Booth, English actor and screenwriter (d. 2005)
  • 1928 – Nathan Oliveira, American artist
  • 1929 – Bob Brookmeyer, American jazz musician
  • 1929 – Howard Sackler, American screenwriter (d. 1982)
  • 1932 – Salvador Elizondo, Mexican writer
  • 1933 – Kevan Gosper, Australian athlete
  • 1933 – Cicely Tyson, American actress
  • 1934 – Rudi Carrell, Dutch singer
  • 1934 – Al Kaline, American baseball player
  • 1934 – Casper R. Taylor, Jr., American politician
  • 1935 – Barbara Bostock, American actress
  • 1935 – Bobby Timmons, American jazz pianist (d. 1974)
  • 1936 – Marian McKnight, Miss America 1957
  • 1940 – Phil Ochs, American folk singer (d. 1976)
  • 1941 – Maurice White, American singer and songwriter (Earth, Wind & Fire)
  • 1942 – Rufus, French actor
  • 1943 – Ross M. Lence, American political scientist (d. 2006)
  • 1944 – William Christie, American-born director of Les Arts Florissants
  • 1944 – Mitchell Feigenbaum, American mathematical physicist
  • 1944 – Richard Leakey, Kenyan paleontologist, conservationist and politician
  • 1944 – Alvin Lee, English singer/guitarist (Ten Years After)
  • 1944 – Tim Reid, American actor
  • 1944 – Zal Yanovsky, Canadian guitarist (The Lovin’ Spoonful) (d. 2002)
  • 1945 – Elaine Joyce, American actress
  • 1946 – Rosemary Conley, English businesswoman, author and broadcaster
  • 1946 – Robert Urich, American actor (d. 2002)
  • 1948 – Ken Brown, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1949 – Nancy Kyes, American actress
  • 1949 – Sebastian, Danish musician
  • 1956 – Tom Lawless, American baseball player
  • 1957 – Cyril Collard, French film director (d. 1993)
  • 1957 – John Gulager, American film director
  • 1957 – Kevin McHale, American basketball player
  • 1958 – Limahl, English singer (Kajagoogoo)
  • 1960 – Mike Lookinland, American actor
  • 1960 – Michelangelo Signorile, American writer
  • 1961 – Eric Allin Cornell, American physicist, Nobel laureate
  • 1961 – Matthew Waterhouse, English actor
  • 1961 – Reggie White, American football player (d. 2004)
  • 1963 – Jennifer Beals, American film actress
  • 1963 – Til Schweiger, German actor
  • 1964 – Arvydas Sabonis, Lithuanian basketball player
  • 1965 – Chito Martínez, Belizean baseball player
  • 1966 – Chuckii Booker, American singer, musician and producer
  • 1966 – Robert MacNaughton, American stage and screen actor
  • 1966 – Alberto Tomba, Italian alpine skier
  • 1966 – Eric Weinrich, American ice hockey player
  • 1967 – Frankie Lam, Hong Kong actor
  • 1967 – Criss Angel, Illusionist,Actor, Musician, etc.
  • 1969 – Richard Hammond, English television presenter
  • 1969 – Tom Gugliotta, American basketball player
  • 1969 – Kristy Swanson, American actress
  • 1969 – Villano IV, Mexican professional wrestler
  • 1970 – Tyson Beckford, American model
  • 1971 – Liz Cho, American television reporter
  • 1971 – Amy Locane, American actress
  • 1971 – Tiffany Towers, Canadian adult film actress
  • 1972 – Alyssa Milano, American actress
  • 1972 – Warren Sapp, American football player
  • 1973 – Takashi Sorimachi, Japanese actor
  • 1973 – Zulfiya Zabirova, Russian cyclist
  • 1974 – Migé Amour, Finnish bassist (HIM)
  • 1974 – Jake Plummer, American football player
  • 1974 – Ricky Ponting, Australian cricketer
  • 1975 – Olivier Tebily, Ivorian footballer
  • 1977 – Jorge Garbajosa, Spanish basketball player
  • 1978 – Patrick Casey, American screenwriter and actor
  • 1979 – Kevin Devine, American musician
  • 1979 – Paola Rey, Colombian actress
  • 1980 – Jake Gyllenhaal, American actor
  • 1980 – Marla Sokoloff, American actress
  • 1982 – Vincent Accardi, American musician
  • 1982 – Maurice Williams, American basketball player
  • 1983 – Matt Stajan, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1984 – Ian Kennedy, Major League Baseball pitcher
  • 1985 – Gary Cahill, English footballer
  • 1985 – Neil Kilkenny, English-born Australian footballer
  • 1985 – Lady Sovereign, English musician
  • 1986 – Ryan Babel, Dutch Footballer
  • 1987 – Karim Benzema, French footballer
  • 1988 – Paulina Gretzky, American-born Canadian actress and model
  • 1991 – Declan Galbraith, English singer
  • 1993 – Chloe Lay, English Legend.

December 19 – Deaths:

  • 401 – Pope Anastasius I
  • 1075 – Edith of Wessex, wife of Edward the Confessor of England
  • 1327 – Agnes of France, Duchess of Burgundy
  • 1370 – Pope Urban V (b. 1310)
  • 1737 – James Sobieski, Crown Prince of Poland (b. 1667)
  • 1741 – Vitus Bering, Danish-born explorer (b. 1681)
  • 1745 – Jean-Baptiste van Loo, French painter (b. 1684)
  • 1749 – Francesco Antonio Bonporti, Italian priest and composer (b. 1672)
  • 1751 – Louise of Great Britain, wife of Frederick V of Denmark (b. 1724)
  • 1807 – Friedrich Melchior, baron von Grimm, German writer (b. 1723)
  • 1813 – James McGill, Scottish-Canadian businessman and philanthropist (b. 1744)
  • 1814 – Joseph Bramah, Inventor and Locksmith, notably invented the beer pump
  • 1819 – Sir Thomas Fremantle, British naval officer and politician (b. 1765)
  • 1848 – Emily Brontë, English author (b. 1818)
  • 1915 – Alois Alzheimer, German neuroscientist (b. 1864)
  • 1932 – Yoon Bong-Gil, Korean activist (b. 1908)
  • 1933 – George Jackson Churchward, GWR Chief mechanical engineer. (b. 1857)
  • 1938 – Stephen Warfield Gambrill, U.S. Congressman (b. 1873)
  • 1939 – Hans Langsdorff, German naval officer (b. 1894)
  • 1944 – Khedive Abbas II of Egypt (b. 1874)
  • 1944 – Rudolph Karstadt, German entrepreneur (b. 1856)
  • 1946 – Paul Langevin, French physicist (b. 1872)
  • 1953 – Robert Millikan, American physicist, Nobel laureate (b. 1868)
  • 1968 – Norman Thomas, American socialist (b. 1884)
  • 1982 – Dwight Macdonald, American social critic (b. 1906)
  • 1984 – Joy Ridderhof, American missionary (b. 1903)
  • 1986 – V. C. Andrews, American author (b. 1923)
  • 1989 – Stella Gibbons, English author (b. 1902)
  • 1991 – Joe Cole, American rock music roadie (b. 1961)
  • 1993 – Michael Clarke, American drummer (The Byrds) (b. 1946)
  • 1996 – Marcello Mastroianni, Italian actor (b. 1924)
  • 1997 – Masaru Ibuka, Japanese industrialist (Sony) (b. 1908)
  • 1997 – Jimmy Rogers, American blues guitarist (b. 1924)
  • 1998 – Mel Fisher, American treasure hunter (b. 1922)
  • 1998 – Antonio Ordóñez, Spanish bullfighter (b. 1932)
  • 1999 – Desmond Llewelyn, Welsh actor (b. 1914)
  • 2000 – Rob Buck, American guitarist (10,000 Maniacs) (b. 1958)
  • 2000 – Milt Hinton, American jazz double bassist (b. 1910)
  • 2000 – John Lindsay, American politician (b. 1921)
  • 2000 – Pops Staples, American singer (The Staple Singers) (b. 1915)
  • 2001 – Marcel Mule, French saxophonist. (b. 1901)
  • 2002 – Arthur Rowley, English footballer. (b. 1926)
  • 2003 – Peter Carter-Ruck, English lawyer (b. 1914)
  • 2003 – Hope Lange, American actress (b. 1933)
  • 2003 – Les Tremayne, English-born American actor (b. 1913)
  • 2004 – Herbert C. Brown, English-born American chemist, Nobel laureate (b. 1912)
  • 2004 – Renata Tebaldi, Italian soprano (b. 1922)
  • 2005 – Keith Duckworth, English mechanical engineer (Cosworth; b. 1933)
  • 2005 – Vincent Gigante, American mafioso (b. 1927)

December 19 – Holidays:

  • Roman festivals – Opalia
  • R.C. Saints – O Radix
  • Independence day – Goa

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On This Day in History December 18

December 18 – Events:

  • 218 BC – Second Punic War: Battle of the Trebia – Hannibal’s Carthaginian forces defeat those of the Roman Republic.
  • 1271 – Kublai Khan renames his empire “Yuan,” officially marking the start of the Yuan Dynasty of China.
  • 1620 – The Mayflower lands in present-day Plymouth, Massachusetts delivering 102 Pilgrims.
  • 1642 – Abel Tasman becomes first European to land in New Zealand.
  • 1777 – The United States celebrates its first Thanksgiving, celebrating the recent victory by the Americans over General John Burgoyne in the Battle of Saratoga in October
  • 1787 – New Jersey becomes the third state to ratify the U.S. Constitution.
  • 1793 – Surrender of the frigate La Lutine by French royalists to Lord Hood; renamed HMS Lutine, she later becomes a famous treasure wreck.
  • 1862 – American Civil War: In the Battle of Lexington, General Nathan Bedford Forrest defeats a Union force under Colonel Robert Ingersoll.
  • 1865 – The Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution is ratified by Georgia, fulfilling the two-thirds requirement for ratification, and abolishing Slavery in the United States.
  • 1878 – John Kehoe, the last of the Molly Maguires is executed in Pennsylvania.
  • 1888 – Richard Wetherill and his brother in-law discover the ancient Indian ruins of Mesa Verde.
  • 1898 – Gaston de Chasseloup-Laubat sets the new land speed record going 39.245 mph, in a Jeantaud electric car. This is the first recognized land speed record.
  • 1900 – The Upper Ferntree Gully to Gembrook Narrow-gauge (2 ft 6 in or 762 mm) Railway (now the Puffing Billy Railway) in Victoria, Australia is opened for traffic.
  • 1912 -The Piltdown Man, later discovered to be a hoax, is supposedly found in the Piltdown Gravel Pit, by Charles Dawson.
  • 1915 – U.S. President Woodrow Wilson marries Edith Bolling Galt Wilson.
  • 1916 – World War I: The Battle of Verdun ends when forces under Chief of Staff Erich Von Falkenhayn suffers 337,000 casualties by the French.
  • 1932 – The Chicago Bears defeat the Portsmouth Spartans 9-0 in the first ever NFL Championship Game. Because of a blizzard, the game was moved from Wrigley Field to the Chicago Stadium, the field measuring 80 yards long.
  • 1935 – The Lanka Sama Samaja Party is founded in Ceylon.
  • 1941 – Japan invades Hong Kong after British governor of Hong Kong, Mark Aitchison Young refuses to surrender to Japanese forces.
  • 1944 – World War II: 77 B-29 Superfortress and 200 other aircraft of U.S. Fourteenth Air Force bomb Hankow, China, a Japanese supply base.
  • 1961 – Indonesia invades Netherlands New Guinea.
  • 1966 – Saturn’s moon Epimetheus is discovered by Richard L. Walker.
  • 1969 – Capital punishment in the United Kingdom: Home Secretary James Callaghan’s motion to make permanent the Murder (Abolition of Death Penalty) Act 1965, which had temporarily suspended capital punishment in England, Wales and Scotland for murder (but not for all crimes) for a period of five years, is carried by both the House of Commons and the House of Lords.
  • 1972 – Vietnam War: President Richard Nixon announces that the United States will engage North Vietnam in Operation Linebacker II, a series of Christmas bombings, after peace talks collapsed with North Vietnam on the 13th.
  • 1973 – Soviet Soyuz Programme: Soyuz 13, crewed by cosmonauts Valentin Lebedev and Pyotr Klimuk, is launched from Baikonur in the Soviet Union.
  • 1982 – A large Tacoa power plant starts burning in Venezuela, eventually killing 128.
  • 1987 – Larry Wall releases the first version of the Perl programming language.
  • 1987 – Ivan Boesky is sentenced to three years in prison for insider trading.
  • 1996 – The Oakland, California school board passes a resolution officially declaring “Ebonics” a language or dialect.
  • 1997 – HTML 4.0 is published by the World Wide Web Consortium.
  • 1999 – NASA launches into orbit the Terra platform carrying five Earth Observation instruments, including ASTER, CERES, MISR, MODIS and MOPITT.
  • 2002 – 2003 California recall: Then Governor of California Gray Davis announces the state would face a record budget deficit of $35 billion, roughly double the figure reported during his reelection campaign one month earlier.

December 18 – Birthdays:

  • 1507 – Ouchi Yoshitaka, Japanese warlord (d. 1551)
  • 1602 – Simonds d’Ewes, English antiquarian and politician (d. 1650)
  • 1610 – Charles du Fresne, sieur du Cange, French philologist (d. 1688)
  • 1615 – Kasandra Kulas Serbian Warrior (d. 1701)
  • 1620 – Heinrich Roth, German Sanskrit scholar (d. 1668)
  • 1661 – Christopher Polhem, Swedish scientist and inventor (d. 1751)
  • 1662 – James Douglas, 2nd Duke of Queensberry, Scottish politician (d. 1711)
  • 1707 – Charles Wesley, English Methodist hymnist (d. 1788)
  • 1725 – Johann Salomo Semler, German historian and Bible commentator (d. 1791)
  • 1825 – Charles Griffin (general), American general (d. 1876)
  • 1835 – Lyman Abbott, American author (d. 1922)
  • 1847 – Augusta Holmès, French composer (d. 1903)
  • 1851 – Graciano Lopez Jaena, Filipino hero, orator and satirist (d. 1896)
  • 1856 – Sir J. J. Thomson, English physicist, Nobel laureate (d. 1940)
  • 1860 – Edward MacDowell, American composer and pianist (d. 1908)
  • 1863 – Franz Ferdinand, Archduke of Austria (d. 1914)
  • 1870 – Saki, English writer (d. 1916)
  • 1873 – Francis Burton Harrison, American political figure (d. 1957)
  • 1878 – Josef Stalin, leader of the Soviet Union (d. 1953)
  • 1879 – Paul Klee, Swiss-born painter (d. 1940)
  • 1886 – Ty Cobb, American baseball player (d. 1961)
  • 1888 – Dame Gladys Cooper, English actress (d. 1971)
  • 1888 – Robert Moses, American public works official (d. 1981)
  • 1890 – Edwin Armstrong, American inventor (d. 1954)
  • 1897 – Fletcher Henderson, American arranger and composer (d. 1952)
  • 1904 – George Stevens, American film director (d. 1975)
  • 1907 – Bill Holland, American auto racer (d. 1984)
  • 1908 – Paul Siple, American Antarctic explorer (d. 1969)
  • 1910 – Abe Burrows, American playwright (d. 1985)
  • 1911 – Jules Dassin, American film director
  • 1912 – Benjamin O. Davis Jr., American General (d. 2002)
  • 1913 – Alfred Bester, American author (d. 1987)
  • 1913 – Willy Brandt, Chancellor of Germany, recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize (d. 1992)
  • 1913 – Ray Meyer, American basketball coach (d. 2006)
  • 1916 – Douglas Fraser, Scottish-born American trade unionist
  • 1916 – Betty Grable, American actress (d. 1973)
  • 1917 – Ossie Davis, American actor and activist (d. 2005)
  • 1927 – Ramsey Clark, U.S. Attorney General
  • 1927 – Roméo LeBlanc, 25th Governor General of Canada
  • 1928 – Józef Glemp, Polish cardinal
  • 1929 – Gino Cimoli, American baseball player
  • 1930 – Moose Skowron, American baseball player
  • 1931 – Allen Klein, American rock and roll business manager
  • 1931 – Alison Plowden, English historian (d. 2007)
  • 1932 – Roger Smith, American actor
  • 1933 – Arthur Leigh Allen, Suspected Zodiac serial killer (d. 1992)
  • 1934 – Boris Volynov, Soviet cosmonaut
  • 1935 – Jacques Pépin, French chef
  • 1936 – Malcolm Kirk, English professional wrestler (d. 1987)
  • 1938 – Chas Chandler, English musician (The Animals) (d. 1996)
  • 1938 – Joel Hirschhorn, American songwriter and composer (d. 2005)
  • 1938 – Roger E. Mosley, American actor
  • 1939 – Michael Moorcock, English author
  • 1939 – Harold E. Varmus, American scientist, Nobel laureate
  • 1940 – Bramwell Morrison, member of Sharon, Lois & Bram
  • 1941 – Wadada Leo Smith, American trumpeter and composer
  • 1942 – Harvey Atkin, Canadian actor
  • 1943 – Keith Richards, English guitarist (The Rolling Stones)
  • 1943 – Alan Rudolph, American film director and screenwriter
  • 1945 – Jean Pronovost, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1946 – Steve Biko, South African anti-apartheid activist (d. 1977)
  • 1946 – Steven Spielberg, American film director
  • 1948 – Bill Nelson, English musician (Be Bop Deluxe)
  • 1948 – Laurent Voulzy, French singer and composer
  • 1949 – David A. Johnston, American volcanologist, first to report 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens (d. 1980)
  • 1950 – Gillian Armstrong, Australian film director
  • 1950 – Randy Castillo, American drummer (Ozzy Osbourne) (d. 2002)
  • 1950 – Leonard Maltin, American film critic
  • 1953 – Elliot Easton, American guitarist (The Cars)
  • 1953 – Khas-Magomed Hadjimuradov, Chechen bard
  • 1955 – Ray Liotta, American actor
  • 1956 – Ron White, American comedian
  • 1960 – Kazuhide Uekusa, Japanese economist
  • 1961 – Brian Orser, Canadian figure skater
  • 1963 – Karl Dorrell, American football coach
  • 1963 – Charles Oakley, American basketball player
  • 1963 – Brad Pitt, American actor
  • 1963 – Pauline Ester, French singer
  • 1964 – “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, American professional wrestler
  • 1964 – Don Beebe, American football player
  • 1964 – Robson Green, English actor and singer
  • 1965 – Mick Collins, American musician (The Gories, The Dirtbombs)
  • 1965 – Tommy Davidson, American actor
  • 1966 – Makiko Esumi, Japanese actress
  • 1966 – Mille Petrozza, German singer (Kreator)
  • 1967 – Toine van Peperstraten, Dutch sports journalist
  • 1968 – Rachel Griffiths, Australian actress
  • 1968 – Alejandro Sanz, Spanish singer
  • 1968 – Casper Van Dien, American actor
  • 1969 – Santiago Cañizares, Spanish footballer
  • 1969 – Justin Edinburgh, English footballer
  • 1969 – Akira Iida, Japanese racing driver
  • 1970 – Anthony Catanzaro, American fitness model
  • 1970 – Cowboy Troy, American rapper
  • 1970 – DMX, American rapper and actor
  • 1970 – Miles Marshall Lewis, American author
  • 1970 – Victoria Pratt, Canadian actress and fitness model
  • 1970 – Rob Van Dam, American professional wrestler
  • 1970 – Johnny Yeo, English artist
  • 1971 – Barkha Dutt, Indian journalist
  • 1971 – Noriko Matsueda, Japanese composer
  • 1971 – Arantxa Sánchez Vicario, Spanish tennis player
  • 1972 – DJ Lethal, Latvian-born American DJ (House of Pain, Limp Bizkit)
  • 1972 – Raymond Herrera, American drummer (Fear Factory) and businessman
  • 1974 – Peter Boulware, American football player
  • 1974 – Kari Byron, artist and television personality
  • 1974 – Euroboy, Norwegian musician (Turbonegro)
  • 1975 – Trish Stratus, Canadian professional wrestler
  • 1975 – Masaki Sumitani, Japanese comedian
  • 1976 – Koyuki, Japanese actress and model
  • 1977 – José Acevedo, Dominican baseball player
  • 1978 – Daniel Cleary, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1978 – Ali Curtis, American soccer player
  • 1978 – Katie Holmes, American actress
  • 1979 – Carlos, Portuguese footballer
  • 1980 – Christina Aguilera, American singer
  • 1982 – Dave Luetkenhoelter, American bassist (Kutless)
  • 1983 – Darren Carter, English footballer
  • 1985 – Tara Conner, 2006 Miss USA
  • 1985 – Hana Soukupová, Czech supermodel
  • 1987 – Miki Ando, Japanese figure skater
  • 1987 – Ayaka, Japanese singer
  • 1987 – Fernando Jara, Panamanian-American jockey
  • 1989 – Ashley Benson, American actress
  • 1989 – Ashley Slanina-Davies, Hollyoaks actress

December 18 – Deaths:

  • 821 – Theodulf, Bishop of Orléans
  • 1133 – Hildebert, French writer
  • 1290 – King Magnus I of Sweden (b. 1240)
  • 1442 – Pierre Cauchon, French Catholic bishop (b. 1371)
  • 1495 – King Alphonso II of Naples (b. 1448)
  • 1692 – Veit Ludwig von Seckendorff, German statesman (b. 1626)
  • 1737 – Antonio Stradivari, Italian violin maker (b. 1644)
  • 1787 – Francis William Drake, British Admiral and Governor of Newfoundland (b. 1724)
  • 1787 – Soame Jenyns, English writer (b. 1704)
  • 1799 – Jean-Étienne Montucla, French mathematician (b. 1725)
  • 1803 – Johann Gottfried Herder, German writer (b. 1744)
  • 1829 – Jean-Baptiste Lamarck, French scientist (b. 1744)
  • 1843 – Thomas Graham, Lord Lynedoch, British Viceroy of India (b. 1748)
  • 1848 – Bernard Bolzano, Bohemian mathematician and philosopher (b. 1781)
  • 1869 – Louis Moreau Gottschalk, American composer and pianist (b. 1829)
  • 1880 – Michel Chasles, French mathematician (b. 1793)
  • 1936 – Andrija Mohorovicic, Austro-Hungarian-born Yugoslav seismologist (b. 1857)
  • 1966 – Tara Browne, British socialite (b. 1945)
  • 1971 – Bobby Jones, American golfer (b. 1902)
  • 1971 – Diana Lynn, American actress (b. 1926)
  • 1973 – Allama Rasheed Turabi, Pakistani scholar, orator and philosopher (b. 1908)
  • 1974 – Harry Hooper, American baseball player (b. 1887)
  • 1975 – Theodosius Dobzhansky, Ukrainian geneticist (b. 1900)
  • 1980 – Alexei Kosygin, Premier of the USSR (b. 1904)
  • 1982 – Hans-Ulrich Rudel, German pilot (b. 1916)
  • 1985 – Xuân Diu, Vietnamese poet (b. 1916)
  • 1987 – Conny Plank, German record producer and musician (b. 1940)
  • 1990 – Anne Revere, American actress (b. 1903)
  • 1990 – Paul Tortelier, French cellist and composer (b. 1914)
  • 1991 – George Abecassis, English Formula 1 driver (b. 1913)
  • 1992 – Mark Goodson, American game show producer (b. 1915)
  • 1993 – Charizma, American rapper (b. 1973)
  • 1993 – Sam Wanamaker, American actor (b. 1919)
  • 1994 – Roger Apéry, Greek-French mathematician (b. 1916)
  • 1995 – Konrad Zuse, German engineer and computing pioneer (b. 1910)
  • 1996 – Yulii Borisovich Khariton, Russian physicist (b. 1904)
  • 1997 – Chris Farley, American actor and comedian (b. 1964)
  • 1998 – Lev Demin, Soviet cosmonaut (b. 1926)
  • 1999 – Robert Bresson, French film director (b. 1907)
  • 2000 – Stan Fox, American race car driver (b. 1952)
  • 2000 – Randolph Apperson Hearst, son of W. Randolph Hearst and father of Patty (b.

1915)

  • 2000 – Kirsty MacColl, English singer and songwriter (b. 1959)
  • 2001 – Gilbert Bécaud, French singer (b. 1927)
  • 2001 – Dimitris Dragatakis, Greek composer (b. 1914)
  • 2002 – Ray Hnatyshyn, Governor-General of Canada (b. 1934)
  • 2002 – Wayne Owens, former U.S. Congressman (D-Utah) (b. 1937)
  • 2004 – Anthony Sampson, British journalist and biographer (b. 1926)
  • 2005 – Alan Voorhees, American engineer and urban planner (b. 1922)
  • 2006 – Joseph Barbera, American cartoonist (b. 1911)
  • 2006 – Ruth Bernhard, American photographer (1905)
  • 2006 – Mike Dickin, British radio broadcaster (b. 1943)
  • 2006 – Shaukat Siddiqui, Pakistani author, journalist and political activist (b. 1923)
  • 2007 – Gerald Le Dain, Canadian Supreme Court judge (b. 1924)
  • 2007 – Jack Linkletter, American television host, son of Art Linkletter (b. 1937)
  • 2007 – Bill Strauss, American writer on generations, satirist, and founder of the Capitol Steps (b. 1947)

December 18 – Holidays:

  • New Jersey Day – A celebration to New Jersey’s admission to the union
  • Roman festivals – Feast of Epona (during Saturnalia)
  • R.C. Saints – Gatianus of Tours, O Adonai, Our Lady of Expectation
  • Niger – Republic Day (autonomous in 1958)
  • Greek Orthodox Church – Feast of Sebastian the Martyr

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On This Day in History December 17

December 17 – Events:

  • 546 – Gothic War (535–552): The Ostrogoths of King Totila conquer Rome by bribing the Byzantine garrison.
  • 920 – Romanos I is crowned as co-emperor of the underage Emperor Constantine VII.
  • 942 – Assassination of William I of Normandy.
  • 1398 – Sultan Nasir-u Din Mehmud’s armies in Delhi are defeated by Timur.
  • 1531 – Pope Clement VII establishes a parallel body to the Inquisition in Lisbon, Portugal.
  • 1538 – Pope Paul III excommunicates Henry VIII of England.
  • 1577 – Francis Drake sets sail from Plymouth, England, on a secret mission to explore the Pacific Coast of the Americas for English Queen Elizabeth I.
  • 1586 – Emperor Go-Yozei becomes Emperor of Japan.
  • 1600 – Marriage of Henry IV of France and Marie de’ Medici.
  • 1637 – Shimabara Rebellion: Japanese peasants led by Amakusa Shiro rise against daimyo Matsukura Shigeharu.
  • 1718 – Great Britain declares war on Spain.
  • 1807 – France issues the Milan Decree, which confirms the Continental System.
  • 1819 – Simón Bolívar declares the independence of the Republic of Gran Colombia in Angostura (now Ciudad Bolívar in Venezuela).
  • 1834 – The Dublin and Kingstown Railway the first public railway on the island of Ireland, opens in Ireland.
  • 1862 – American Civil War: General Ulysses S. Grant issues General Order No. 11, expelling Jews from Tennessee, Mississippi, and Kentucky.
  • 1903 – The Wright Brothers make their first powered and heavier-than-air flight in the Wright Flyer at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.
  • 1919 – Uruguay becomes a signatory to the Buenos Aires copyright treaty.
  • 1926 – Antanas Smetona assumes power in Lithuania via a coup d’état?
  • 1935 – First flight of the Douglas DC-3 airplane.
  • 1939 – World War II: Battle of the River Plate – The Admiral Graf Spee is scuttled by Captain Hans Langsdorff outside Montevideo.
  • 1941 – World War II: Beginning of the Siege of Sebastopol.
  • 1941 – World War II: Japanese forces land in Northern Borneo.
  • 1944 – World War II: Battle of the Bulge – Malmedy massacre – American 285th Field Artillery Observation Battalion POWs are shot by Waffen-SS Kampfgruppe Peiper.
  • 1957 – The United States successfully launched the first Atlas intercontinental ballistic missile in Cape Canaveral, Florida.
  • 1961 – History of Goa: Operation Vijay – India seizes Goa from Portugal.
  • 1967 – Prime Minister of Australia Harold Holt disappears while swimming near Portsea, Victoria and was presumed drowned.
  • 1969 – The SALT I talks begin.
  • 1969 – Project Blue Book: The USAF closes its study of UFOs, stating that sightings were generated as a result of “A mild form of mass hysteria, Individuals who fabricate such reports to perpetrate a hoax or seek publicity, psychopathological persons, and misidentification of various conventional objects.”
  • 1970 – Polish 1970 protests: In Gdynia, soldiers fire at workers emerging from trains, killing dozens.
  • 1973 – Terrorism: 30 passengers are killed in an attack by Palestinian terrorists on Rome’s Leonardo da Vinci Airport.
  • 1978 – The Workers Party of Jamaica is founded by Trevor Munroe.
  • 1981 – Brigadier General James L. Dozier is abducted by the Red Brigade in Verona, Italy.
  • 1981 – The Senegambia Confederation is founded.
  • 1983 – The IRA bombs Harrods Department Store in London, killing six people.
  • 1989 – Romanian Revolution: Protests continue in Timisoara with rioters breaking into the Romanian Communist Party’s District Committee building and attempting to set it on fire.
  • 1989 – First free elections in Brazil in 25 years.
  • 1989 – The longest-running American sitcom The Simpsons had its debut.
  • 1999 – The United Nations General Assembly passes resolution 54/134 designating November 25 as the annual International Day to Eliminate Violence Against Women.
  • 2002 – Second Congo War: The Congolese parties of the Inter Congolese Dialogue sign a peace accord which makes provision for transitional governance and legislative and presidential elections within two years.
  • 2003 – The Soham murder trial ends at the Old Bailey in London, with Ian Huntley found guilty of two counts of murder. His girlfriend Maxine Carr is found guilty of perverting the course of justice.
  • 2003 – SpaceShipOne flight 11P, piloted by Brian Binnie, makes its first supersonic flight.
  • 2005 – Anti-WTO protesters riot in Wan Chai, Hong Kong

December 17 – Birthdays:

  • 1239 – Kujo Yoritsugu, Japanese Shogun (d. 1256)
  • 1267 – Emperor Go-Uda of Japan (d. 1324)
  • 1619 – Prince Rupert of the Rhine, commander in the English Civil War (d. 1682)
  • 1632 – Anthony Wood, English antiqurian (d. 1695)
  • 1685 – Thomas Tickell, English writer (d. 1740)
  • 1706 – Émilie du Châtelet, French mathematician and physicist (d. 1749)
  • 1734 – Maria I of Portugal, Portuguese queen (d. 1816)
  • 1749 – Domenico Cimarosa, Italian composer (d. 1801)
  • 1770 – (Baptism) – Ludwig van Beethoven, German composer (d. 1827)
  • 1778 – Sir Humphry Davy, English chemist and physicist (d. 1829)
  • 1796 – Thomas Chandler Haliburton, Canadian novelist (d. 1865)
  • 1807 – John Greenleaf Whittier, American poet and abolitionist (d. 1892)
  • 1830 – Jules de Goncourt, French publisher (d. 1870)
  • 1835 – Alexander Emanuel Agassiz, American scientist; son of Louis Agassiz (d. 1910)
  • 1847 – Émile Faguet, French writer and critic (d. 1916)
  • 1853 – Émile Roux, French physician (d. 1933)
  • 1859 – Paul César Helleu, French artist (d. 1927)
  • 1873 – Ford Madox Ford, English writer (d. 1939)
  • 1874 – William Lyon Mackenzie King, 10th Prime Minister of Canada (d. 1950)
  • 1883 – Raimu, French actor (d. 1946)
  • 1887 – Josef Lada, Czech painter (d. 1957)
  • 1887 – Hermine Reuss, Empress of Germany and Duchess of Bohemia (d. 1947)
  • 1888 – King Alexander I of Yugoslavia (d. 1934)
  • 1892 – Sam Barry, American basketball coach (d. 1950)
  • 1893 – Erwin Piscator, German film director (d. 1966)
  • 1894 – Arthur Fiedler, American conductor (d. 1979)
  • 1900 – Mary Cartwright, English mathematician (d. 1998)
  • 1900 – Katina Paxinou, Greek actress (d. 1973)
  • 1903 – Erskine Caldwell, American author (d. 1987)
  • 1903 – Ray Noble, English bandleader and actor (d. 1978)
  • 1904 – Paul Cadmus, American artist (d. 1999)
  • 1905 – Simo Häyhä, Finnish sniper (d. 2002)
  • 1905 – Érico Lopes Veríssimo, Brazilian writer (d. 1975)
  • 1906 – Fernando Lopes-Graça, Portuguese composer and musicologist (d. 1994)
  • 1908 – Willard Frank Libby, American chemist, Nobel laureate (d. 1980)
  • 1910 – Sy Oliver, American jazz arranger and bandleader (d. 1988)
  • 1915 – André Claveau, French singer (d. 2003)
  • 1916 – Penelope Fitzgerald, English writer (d. 2000)
  • 1920 – Kenneth E. Iverson, Canadian computer scientist (d. 2004)
  • 1922 – Alan Voorhees, American engineer and urban planner (d. 2005)
  • 1923 – Jaroslav Pelikan, American historian (d. 2006)
  • 1926 – Ray Jablonski, American baseball player (d. 1985)
  • 1927 – Richard Long, American actor (d. 1974)
  • 1929 – Jacqueline Hill, English actress (d. 1993)
  • 1929 – William Safire, American columnist
  • 1930 – Bob Guccione, American magazine publisher
  • 1930 – Bob Mathias, American decathlete and congressman (d. 2006)
  • 1930 – Armin Mueller-Stahl, German actor
  • 1931 – Dave Madden, Canadian-born American actor
  • 1934 – Ray Wilson, English footballer
  • 1935 – George Lindsey, American actor
  • 1935 – Cal Ripken, Sr., American baseball coach (d. 1999)
  • 1936 – Tommy Steele, English singer and actor
  • 1937 – Kerry Packer, Australian businessman (d. 2005)
  • 1937 – John Kennedy Toole, American novelist (d. 1969)
  • 1937 – Calvin Waller, US Army general (d. 1996)
  • 1938 – Carlo Little, English drummer (d. 2005)
  • 1938 – Peter Snell, New Zealand runner
  • 1939 – Eddie Kendricks, American singer (The Temptations) (d. 1992)
  • 1940 – Kåre Valebrokk, Norwegian journalist
  • 1942 – Paul Butterfield, American musician (d. 1987)
  • 1943 – Mary Brunner, American former “Manson Family” member
  • 1943 – Ron Geesin, Scottish musician and composer
  • 1944 – Jack L. Chalker, American novelist (d. 2005)
  • 1944 – Bernard Hill, English actor
  • 1945 – Ernie Hudson, American actor
  • 1945 – Chris Matthews, American journalist
  • 1945 – Jacqueline Wilson, English author
  • 1946 – Eugene Levy, Canadian actor
  • 1947 – Wes Studi, American actor
  • 1949 – Sotiris Kaiafas, Cypriot footballer
  • 1949 – Paul Rodgers, English singer (Free; Bad Company)
  • 1950 – Laurence F. Johnson, American educator
  • 1951 – Ken Hitchcock, Canadian ice hockey coach
  • 1951 – Tatyana Kazankina, Soviet athlete
  • 1953 – Samuel Hadida, film distributor
  • 1953 – Barry Livingston, American actor
  • 1953 – Bill Pullman, American actor
  • 1955 – Brad Davis, American basketball player
  • 1956 – Peter Farrelly, American film director
  • 1957 – Earl Hudson, American drummer (Bad Brains)
  • 1958 – Mike Mills, American musician (R.E.M.)
  • 1960 – Moreno Argentin, Italian cyclist
  • 1961 – Sara Dallin, English singer (Bananarama)
  • 1962 – Paul Dobson, English footballer
  • 1962 – Richard Jewell, falsely accused in the 1996 Centennial Olympic Park bombing (d. 2007)
  • 1962 – Rocco Mediate, American golfer
  • 1964 – Ginger, English singer and guitarist (The Wildhearts)
  • 1964 – Frank Musil, Czech ice hockey player
  • 1964 – Michele Tafoya, American sportscaster
  • 1965 – Craig Berube, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1966 – Tracy Byrd, American musician
  • 1966 – Valeri Liukin, Soviet gymnast
  • 1966 – Kristiina Ojuland, Estonian politician
  • 1967 – Gigi D’Agostino, Italian DJ and musician
  • 1967 – Vincent Damphousse, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1968 – Andrey Golovatiuk, Russian politician
  • 1968 – Paul Tracy, Canadian race car driver
  • 1969 – Chuck Liddell, American mixed martial artist
  • 1969 – Chris Mason, English darts player
  • 1970 – Sean Patrick Thomas, American actor
  • 1971 – Alan Khan, South African radio disc jockey
  • 1971 – Antoine Rigaudeau, French basketball player
  • 1972 – John Abraham, Indian actor
  • 1972 – Laurie Holden, American actress
  • 1973 – Konstadinos Gatsioudis, Greek javelin thrower
  • 1973 – Paula Radcliffe, English runner
  • 1974 – Duff Goldman, American chef
  • 1974 – Giovanni Ribisi, American actor
  • 1975 – Nick Dinsmore (Eugene), American professional wrestler
  • 1975 – Milla Jovovich, Ukrainian-born actress
  • 1975 – Sarah Paulson, American actress
  • 1975 – Bree Sharp, American singer/songwriter
  • 1976 – Éric Bédard, Canadian speed skater
  • 1976 – Zsanett Égerházi, Hungarian-born porn actress
  • 1976 – Patrick Müller, Swiss footballer
  • 1976 – Takeo Spikes, American football player
  • 1977 – Arnaud Clement, French tennis player
  • 1978 – Alex Cintrón, Puerto Rican baseball player
  • 1978 – Riteish Deshmukh, Indian actor
  • 1978 – Manny Pacquiao, Filipino boxer
  • 1978 – Neil Sanderson, Canadian drummer (Three Days Grace)
  • 1978 – Chase Utley, American baseball player
  • 1979 – Jaimee Foxworth, American actress and porn star
  • 1979 – Ryan Key, American musician and songwriter (Yellowcard)
  • 1979 – Matt Murley, American ice hockey player
  • 1980 – Ryan Hunter-Reay, American race car driver
  • 1980 – Eli Pariser, American political activist (MoveOn.org)
  • 1982 – Josh Barfield, American baseball player
  • 1982 – Craig Kielburger, Canadian labour activist
  • 1982 – Stephane Lasme, Gabonese basketball player
  • 1982 – Ryan Moats, National Football League running back
  • 1984 – Andrew Davies, English footballer
  • 1985 – Ryuichi Ogata, member of Japanese boy band.
  • 1986 – Vanessa Zima, American actress
  • 1992 – Thomas Law, English Actor
  • 1994 – Nat Wolff, American Singer, actor and songwriter
  • 2007 – James Windsor, Viscount Severn, son of Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex

December 17 – Deaths:

  • 942 – William Longsword
  • 1187 – Pope Gregory VIII
  • 1195 – Baldwin V, Count of Hainaut (b. 1150)
  • 1273 – Rumi (b.1207)
  • 1663 – Nzinga of Ndongo and Matamba (b. 1583)
  • 1721 – Richard Lumley, 1st Earl of Scarbrough, English statesman (b. 1640)
  • 1830 – Simón Bolívar, Venezuelan-born liberator, six nations (b. 1783)
  • 1833 – Kaspar Hauser, German foundling (b. 1812)
  • 1847 – Archduchess Marie Louise of Austria, second wife of Napoleon (b. 1791)
  • 1907 – William Thomson, 1st Baron Kelvin, Irish-born physicist (b. 1824)
  • 1909 – Léopold II of Belgium (b. 1835)
  • 1917 – Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, English physician (b. 1836)
  • 1917 – Frank Gotch, American professional wrestler (b. 1878)
  • 1929 – Manuel Gomes da Costa, 96 Prime Minister of Portugal and 10 President of Portugal (b. 1863)
  • 1933 – Thubten Gyatso, 13th Dalai Lama (b. 1876)
  • 1940 – Alicia Boole Stott, Irish mathematician (b. 1860)
  • 1957 – Dorothy L. Sayers, English writer (b. 1893)
  • 1962 – Thomas Mitchell, American actor (b. 1892)
  • 1964 – Victor Franz Hess, Austrian-born physicist, Nobel laureate (b. 1883)
  • 1967 – Harold Holt, Australian Prime Minister (b. 1908)
  • 1967 – Jack Perrin, American actor (b. 1896)
  • 1978 – Don Ellis, American jazz band leader (b. 1934)
  • 1982 – Homer S. Ferguson, American politician (b. 1889)
  • 1987 – Linda Wong, American porn star (b. 1951)
  • 1987 – Marguerite Yourcenar, Belgian novelist (b. 1903)
  • 1992 – Dana Andrews, American actor (b. 1909)
  • 1999 – Rex Allen, American actor, singer and songwriter (b. 1920)
  • 1999 – Grover Washington, Jr., American saxophonist (b. 1943)
  • 2002 – James Hazeldine, English actor (b. 1947)
  • 2003 – Ed Devereaux, Australian actor (b. 1925)
  • 2003 – Otto Graham, American football player (b. 1921)
  • 2004 – Tom Wesselmann, American collage artist (b. 1931)
  • 2005 – Jack Anderson, American journalist (b. 1922)
  • 2005 – Marc Favreau, French Canadian humourist (Sol) (b. 1929)
  • 2006 – Larry Sherry, American baseball player (b. 1935)

December 17 – Holidays:

  • Bhutan – National Day (1907)
  • Greek Orthodox Church-Saint Barbaras day – Feast of Daniel the Prophet
  • International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers
  • R.C. Saints – O Sapientia ; Saint Lazarus
  • Roman festivals – Saturnalia, in honor of Saturn, began
  • USA – Wright Brothers Day (by Presidential Proclamation)

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On This Day in History December 16

December 16 – Events:

  • 755 – An Lushan revolts against Chancellor Yang Guozhong at Fanyang, initiating the An Shi Rebellion during the Tang Dynasty of China.
  • 1392 – Nanboku-cho – Emperor Go-Kameyama abdicates in favor of rival claimant Go-Komatsu.
  • 1431 – Henry VI of England is crowned King of France at Notre Dame in Paris.
  • 1497 – Vasco da Gama rounds the Cape of Good Hope, the point where Bartolomeu Dias had previously turned back to Portugal.
  • 1598 – Seven Year War: Battle of Noryang Point – The final battle of the Seven Year War is fought between the Korean and Japanese navies, resulting in a decisive Korean victory.
  • 1653 – English Interregnum: The Protectorate – Oliver Cromwell becomes Lord Protector of the Commonwealth of England, Scotland and Ireland.
  • 1689 – Convention Parliament: The Declaration of Right is embodied in the Bill of Rights.
  • 1707 – Last recorded eruption of Mount Fuji in Japan.
  • 1761 – Seven Years’ War: After four-month siege, the Russians under Pyotr Rumyantsev take the Prussian fortress of Kolobrzeg.
  • 1773 – American Revolution: Boston Tea Party – Members of the Sons of Liberty disguised as Mohawks dump crates of tea into Boston harbor as a protest against the Tea Act.
  • 1811 – The first two in a series of severe earthquakes occurs, in the vicinity of New Madrid, Missouri.
  • 1826 – Benjamin W. Edwards rides into Mexican controlled Nacogdoches, Texas and declares himself ruler of the Republic of Fredonia.
  • 1838 – Battle of Blood River: Voortrekkers led by Andries Pretorius combat Zulu impis, led by Dambuza (Nzobo) and Ndlela kaSompisi in what is today KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.
  • 1850 – History of New Zealand: The Charlotte-Jane and the Randolph bring the first of the Canterbury Pilgrims to Lyttelton.
  • 1863 – American Civil War: Joseph E. Johnston replaces Braxton Bragg as commander of the Army of Tennessee.
  • 1864 – American Civil War: Franklin-Nashville Campaign – Battle of Nashville – Major General George H. Thomas’s Union forces defeat Lieutenant General John Bell Hood’s Confederate Army of Tennessee.
  • 1893 – Antonín Dvorák’s Symphony No. 9 in E minor, Op. 95, “From The New World” was given its world premiere at Carnegie Hall.
  • 1907 – Great White Fleet started its circumnavigation of the world
  • 1910 – During a ground test of his Coanda-1910 plane, Henri Coanda, caught unaware

by the power of the engine, finds himself briefly airborne and loses control of the machine which crashes to the ground.

  • 1914 – World War I: German battleships under Franz Von Hipper bombard the English ports of Hartlepool and Scarborough.
  • 1920 – A magnitude 8.5 earthquake rocks the Gansu province in China, killing an estimated 200,000.
  • 1922 – President of Poland Gabriel Narutowicz is assassinated by Eligiusz Niewiadomski at the Zacheta Gallery in Warsaw.
  • 1925 – Alpha Phi Omega national service fraternity is founded at Lafayette College.
  • 1937 – Theodore Cole and Ralph Roe attempt to escape from the American federal prison on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay; neither is ever seen again.
  • 1941 – World War II: Japanese occupy Miri, Sarawak
  • 1942 – Holocaust: Porajmos – Heinrich Himmler orders that Roma candidates for extermination be deported to Auschwitz.
  • 1944 – World War II: Battle of the Bulge – General Dwight D. Eisenhower’s allied forces and Field Marshall Gerd von Rundstedt’s German army engage in the Belgian Ardennes.
  • 1946 – Léon Blum becomes Prime Minister of France.
  • 1947 – William Shockley, John Bardeen and Walter Brattain build the first practical point contact transistor.
  • 1949 – Svenska Aeroplan Aktiebolaget, later knows as SAAB, is founded in Sweden.
  • 1950 – President Harry S. Truman declares a state of emergency, after Chinese troops enter the fight with communist North Korea in the Korean War.
  • 1957 – Sir Feroz Khan Noon replaces Ibrahim Ismail Chundrigar as Prime Minister of Pakistan.
  • 1960 – 1960 New York air disaster: While approaching New York’s Idlewild Airport, a United Airlines Douglas DC-8 collides with a TWA Lockheed Super Constellation in a blinding snowstorm over Staten Island, killing 134.
  • 1965 – Vietnam War: General William Westmoreland sends U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara a request for 243,000 more men by the end of 1966.
  • 1971 – Bangladesh War of Independence and Indo-Pakistani War of 1971: The surrender of the Pakistan army brings an end to both conflicts.
  • 1971 – Independence Day of the State of Bahrain from British Protectorate Status
  • 1972 – Vietnam War: Henry Kissinger announces that North Vietnam has left private peace negotiations, in Paris.
  • 1978 – Cleveland, Ohio becomes the first post-Depression era city to default on its loans, owing $14,000,000 to local banks.
  • 1979 – Libya joins four other OPEC nations in raising crude oil prices, having an immediate dramatic effect on the United States.
  • 1982 – The Federal Reserve announces that the operating capacity of factories has gone down to 67.8%.
  • 1985 – Mafia: In New York City, Paul Castellano and Thomas Bilotti are shot dead on the orders of John Gotti, who assumes leadership of the Gambino family.
  • 1986 – Revolt in Kazakhstan against Communist party, known as Zheltoksan, which becomes the first sign of ethnic strife during Gorbachev’s tenure.
  • 1989 – Protest breaks out in Timisoara in response to an attempt by the government to evict dissident Hungarian pastor, László Tokés.
  • 1989 – Walter LeRoy Moody begins his terrorist bombing streak when he sends Judge Robert Smith Vance a bomb in the mail, instantly killing him near his house in Birmingham, Alabama.
  • 1991 – United Nations General Assembly: UN General Assembly Resolution 4686 revokes UN General Assembly Resolution 3379 after Israel makes revocation of resolution 3379 a condition of its participation in the Madrid Peace Conference of 1991.
  • 1991 – Independence of The Republic of Kazakhstan.
  • 1998 – Iraq disarmament crisis: Operation Desert Fox – The United States and United Kingdom bomb targets in Iraq.

December 16 – Birthdays:

  • 1485 – Catherine of Aragon, Queen of England (d. 1536)
  • 1584 – John Selden, English jurist and oriental scholar (d. 1654)
  • 1614 – Eberhard III, Duke of Württemberg (d. 1674)
  • 1714 – George Whitefield, English-born Methodist leader (d. 1770)
  • 1716 – Louis-Jules Mancini-Mazarini, Duc de Nivernais, French diplomat and writer (d. 1798)
  • 1717 – Elizabeth Carter, English writer (d. 1806)
  • 1742 – Gebhard Fürst Blücher von Wahlstatt, German Field Marshal (d. 1819)
  • 1770 – Ludwig van Beethoven, German composer (d. 1827)
  • 1775 – Jane Austen, English writer (d. 1817)
  • 1775 – François-Adrien Boïeldieu, French composer (d. 1834)
  • 1776 – Johann Wilhelm Ritter, German physicist (d. 1810)
  • 1790 – King Léopold I of Belgium (d. 1865)
  • 1804 – Viktor Bunyakovsky, Russian mathematician (d. 1889)
  • 1834 – Léon Walras, French economist (d. 1910)
  • 1861 – Antonio de La Gandara, French painter (d. 1917)
  • 1863 – George Santayana, Spanish philosopher and writer (d. 1952)
  • 1865 – Olavo Bilac, Brazilian poet (d. 1918)
  • 1866 (N.S.) – Wassily Kandinsky, Russian-born French abstract painter (d. 1944)
  • 1867 – Amy Carmichael, missionary in Dohnavur, India (d. 1951)
  • 1869 – Hristo Tatarchev, Bulgarian revolutionary (d. 1952)
  • 1872 – Anton Ivanovich Denikin, Russian general (d. 1947)
  • 1882 – Sir Jack Hobbs, English cricketer (d. 1963)
  • 1882 – Zoltán Kodály, Hungarian composer (d. 1967)
  • 1882 – Walther Meissner, German physicist (d. 1974)
  • 1883 – Max Linder, French pioneer of silent film (d. 1925)
  • 1888 – King Alexander I of Yugoslavia (d. 1934)
  • 1888 – Alphonse Juin, Marshall of France (d. 1967)
  • 1899 – Sir Noel Coward, English playwright, actor and composer (d. 1973)
  • 1900 – V. S. Pritchett, English author and critic (d. 1997)
  • 1901 – Margaret Mead, American anthropologist (d. 1978)
  • 1902 – Rafael Alberti, Spanish poet (d. 1999)
  • 1905 – Piet Hein, Danish mathematician and inventor (d. 1996)
  • 1906 – Barbara Kent, Canadian actress
  • 1915 – Turk Murphy, American trombonist (d. 1987)
  • 1917 – Nabi Bux Khan Baloch, Sindhi scholar
  • 1917 – Sir Arthur C. Clarke, English writer
  • 1918 – Pierre Delanoë, French songwriter and lyricist (d. 2006)
  • 1922 – Cy Leslie, American music and video executive (d. 2008)
  • 1926 – James McCracken, American tenor (d. 1988)
  • 1927 – Randall Garrett, American writer (d. 1987)
  • 1928 – Philip K. Dick, American writer (d. 1982)
  • 1929 – Nicholas Courtney, English actor
  • 1932 – Rodion Shchedrin, Soviet/Russian composer
  • 1934 – Elgin Gay Baylor, NBA Hall of Famer
  • 1936 – Morris Dees, founder of the Southern Poverty Law Center
  • 1937 – Joyce Bulifant, American actress
  • 1938 – Frank Deford, American sportswriter
  • 1938 – Liv Ullmann, Norwegian actress
  • 1941 – Lesley Stahl, American journalist
  • 1943 – Steven Bochco, American television producer and writer
  • 1943 – Tony Hicks, English guitarist (The Hollies)
  • 1945 – Patti Deutsch, American actress and Match Game panelist
  • 1945 – Bobby George, English professional darts player
  • 1945 – Yukio Hattori, Japanese Iron Chef commentator
  • 1946 – Benny Andersson, Swedish musician, singer and songwriter (ABBA)
  • 1946 – Trevor Pinnock, English conductor and harpsichordist
  • 1947 – Ben Cross, English actor
  • 1947 – Vincent Matthews, American sprinter
  • 1948 – Christopher Biggins, English actor
  • 1949 – Billy Gibbons, American guitarist (ZZ Top)
  • 1950 – Claudia Cohen, American gossip columnist and socialite (d. 2007)
  • 1950 – Roy Schuiten, Dutch cyclist (d. 2006)
  • 1951 – Robben Ford, American guitarist
  • 1952 – Joel Garner, Barbadian West Indies cricketer
  • 1952 – Francesco Graziani, Italian footballer
  • 1955 – Xander Berkeley, American actor
  • 1955 – Prince Lorenz of Belgium, Archduke of Austria-Este
  • 1960 – Pat van den Hauwe, Belgian footballer
  • 1961 – Bill Hicks, American comedian (d. 1994)
  • 1961 – Jon Tenney, American actor
  • 1962 – Maruschka Detmers, Dutch actress
  • 1962 – William “The Refrigerator” Perry, American football player
  • 1963 – Benjamin Bratt, American actor
  • 1963 – Jeff Carson, American singer
  • 1963 – James Mangold, American film director and screenwriter
  • 1964 – Heike Drechsler, East German-born sprinter
  • 1964 – Georgie Parker, Australian actress
  • 1964 – Billy Ripken, American baseball player
  • 1965 – Chris Jones, American baseball player
  • 1965 – Melanie Sloan, American attorney
  • 1965 – Nancy Valen, American actress
  • 1966 – Clifford Robinson, American basketball player
  • 1966 – Dennis Wise, English footballer
  • 1967 – Donovan Bailey, Jamaican-born Canadian sprinter
  • 1967 – Miranda Otto, Australian actress
  • 1971 – Michael McCary, American singer (Boyz II Men)
  • 1971 – Paul van Dyk, German DJ
  • 1972 – Angela Bloomfield, New Zealand actress
  • 1972 – Charles Gipson, American baseball player
  • 1972 – Željko Kalac, Australian soccer player
  • 1973 – Themba Mnguni, South African footballer
  • 1973 – Scott Storch, Canadian-American hip-hop producer
  • 1974 – Frida Hallgren, Swedish actress
  • 1975 – Valentin Badoi, Romanian footballer
  • 1975 – Nawo Kawakita, Japanese drummer (Maximum the Hormone)
  • 1975 – Benjamin Kowalewicz, Canadian musician (Billy Talent)
  • 1975 – Jonathan Scarfe, Canadian actor
  • 1977 – Éric Bélanger, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1977 – Sylvain Distin, French footballer
  • 1978 – Gunter Van Handenhoven, Belgian footballer
  • 1978 – Kaine, American rapper (Ying Yang Twins)
  • 1979 – Mihai Traistariu, Romanian singer
  • 1979 – Jessie Ward, American professional wrestler
  • 1979 – Trevor Immelman, South African golfer
  • 1981 – Flo Rida, American rapper
  • 1981 – Anna Sedokova, Ukrainian singer
  • 1981 – Took Leng How, Malaysian criminal (d. 2006)
  • 1981 – Gareth Williams, Scottish footballer
  • 1982 – Garnon Davies, Welsh actor
  • 1983 – Kelenna Azubuike, English basketball player
  • 1983 – Danielle Lloyd, English model
  • 1983 – Antrel Rolle, National Football League defensive back
  • 1985 – Keita Tachibana, member of Japanese boy band w-inds.
  • 1985 – Girish Swami from bhandup mumbai india
  • 1987 – Hallee Hirsh, American actress
  • 1988 – Anna Popplewell, English actress
  • 1992 – Blake Falls, footballplayer

December 16 – Deaths:

  • 705 – Empress Wu of Zhou (b. 625)
  • 714 – Pippin of Herstal, Mayor of the Palace of Austrasia
  • 867 – Eberhard of Friuli
  • 999 – Saint Adelaide of Italy (b. 931)
  • 1325 – Charles of Valois, son of Philip III of France (b. 1270)
  • 1378 – Otto III of Montferrat
  • 1379 – John Fitzalan, Marshal of England
  • 1470 – John II, Duke of Lorraine (b. 1425)
  • 1515 – Afonso de Albuquerque Portuguese naval general (b. 1453)
  • 1598 – Yi Sun-sin, Korean admiral (b. 1545)
  • 1669 – Nathaniel Fiennes, English politician (b. circa 1608)
  • 1687 – William Petty, English scientist and philosopher (b. 1623)
  • 1751 – Leopold II of Anhalt-Dessau, Prussian general (b. 1700)
  • 1765 – Peter Frederick Haldimand, Swiss military officer and surveyor
  • 1774 – François Quesnay, French economist (b. 1694)
  • 1783 – Johann A. Hasse, German composer (b. 1699)
  • 1783 – Sir William James, British naval commander (b. 1720)
  • 1809 – Antoine François, comte de Fourcroy, French chemist (b. 1755)
  • 1859 – Wilhelm Grimm, German writer and folklorist (b. 1786)
  • 1897 – Alphonse Daudet, French novelist and short story writer (b. 1840)
  • 1898 – Pavel Tretyakov, Russian businessman and art collector (b. 1832)
  • 1914 – Ivan Zajc, Croatian composer (b. 1832)
  • 1921 – Camille Saint-Saëns, French composer (b. 1835)
  • 1922 – Gabriel Narutowicz, first President of Poland (b. 1865)
  • 1928 – Elinor Wylie, American poet and writer (b. 1885)
  • 1935 – Thelma Todd, American actress (b. 1905)
  • 1940 – Billy Hamilton, American baseball player (b. 1866)
  • 1945 – Giovanni Agnelli, Italian automobile manufacturer (b. 1866)
  • 1945 – Fumimaro Konoye, Prime Minister of Japan (b. 1891)
  • 1949 – Sidney Olcott, Canadian film director (b. 1873)
  • 1956 – Nina Hamnett, Welsh artist (b. 1890)
  • 1965 – W. Somerset Maugham, English writer (b. 1874)
  • 1976 – Réal Caouette, French Canadian politician (Social Credit Party of Canada) (b. 1917)
  • 1977 – Risto Jarva, Finnish filmmaker (b. 1934)
  • 1980 – Colonel Sanders, American fast food entrepreneur (b. 1890)
  • 1980 – Hellmuth Walter, German engineer and inventor (b. 1900)
  • 1982 – Colin Chapman, English engineer and automobile manufacturer, founder of Lotus
  • Cars (b. 1928)
  • 1984 – Debs Garms, American baseball player (b. 1907)
  • 1985 – Thomas Bilotti, American mafioso (b. 1940)
  • 1985 – Paul Castellano, American mafioso (b. 1915)
  • 1988 – Sylvester, American singer (b. 1948)
  • 1989 – Oscar Alfredo Gálvez, Argentine racing driver (b. 1913)
  • 1989 – Silvana Mangano, Italian actress (b. 1930)
  • 1989 – Aileen Pringle, American actress (b. 1895)
  • 1989 – Lee Van Cleef, American actor (b. 1925)
  • 1990 – Douglas Campbell, American pilot (b. 1896)
  • 1992 – Blake Falls (football player)
  • 1993 – Moses Gunn, American actor (b. 1929)
  • 1993 – Tanaka Kakuei, Prime Minister of Japan (b. 1918)
  • 1995 – Johnny Moss, American poker player (b. 1907)
  • 1995 – Mariele Ventre, Italian choir director (b. 1939)
  • 1996 – Quentin Bell, English art historian (b. 1910)
  • 1997 – Nicolette Larson, American singer (b. 1952)
  • 1998 – William Gaddis, American writer (b. 1922)
  • 2001 – Stuart Adamson, English-born Scottish musician (The Skids, Big Country) (b. 1958)
  • 2001 – Stefan Heym, German author (b. 1913)
  • 2003 – Robert Stanfield, Premier of Nova Scotia (b. 1914)
  • 2003 – Gary Stewart, American musician and songwriter (b. 1945)
  • 2004 – Ted Abernathy, American baseball player (b. 1933)
  • 2005 – Kenneth Bulmer, English author (b. 1921)
  • 2005 – Ed Hansen, American film director and editor (b. 1937)
  • 2005 – John Spencer, American actor (b. 1946)
  • 2006 – Don Jardine, Canadian professional wrestler (b. 1940)
  • 2006 – Taliep Petersen, South African singer and composer (b. 1950)
  • 2006 – Pnina Salzman, Israeli pianist (b. 1922)
  • 2007 – Dan Fogelberg, American singer/songwriter (b. 1951)

December 16 – Holidays:

  • Bahrain – National Day
  • Bangladesh – Victory Day
  • India – Vijay Divas (Victory Day)
  • Kazakhstan – Independence Day
  • South Africa – Day of Reconciliation
  • Afrikaners (South Africa) – Day of the Vow
  • Mexico – First day of Las Posadas
  • Philippines – First day of Misa de Gallo
  • St. Adelaide
  • St. Eusebius of Vercelli

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On This Day in History December 15

December 15 – Events:

  • 533 – Byzantine general Belisarius defeats the Vandals, commanded by King Gelimer, at the Battle of Ticameron.
  • 1167 – Sicilian chancellor Stephen du Perche moves the royal court to Messina to prevent a rebellion.
  • 1256 – Hulagu Khan captures and destroys the Hashshashin stronghold at Alamut in present-day Iran as part of the Mongol offensive on Islamic southwest Asia.
  • 1467 – Stephen III of Moldavia defeats Matthias Corvinus of Hungary, with the latter being  injured thrice, at the Battle of Baia.
  • 1791 – The United States Bill of Rights becomes law when ratified by the Virginia legislature.
  • 1864 – In the Battle of Nashville, Union forces under George H. Thomas almost completely destroy the Army of Tennessee under John B. Hood.
  • 1868 – Shogunate rebels found Ezo Republic in Hokkaido.
  • 1891 – James Naismith introduces the first version of basketball, with thirteen rules, a peach basket nailed to either end of his school’s gymnasium, and two teams of nine players.
  • 1913 – Nicaragua becomes a signatory to the Buenos Aires copyright treaty.
  • 1914 – World War I: The Serbian Army recaptures Belgrade from the invading Austro- Hungarian Army.
  • 1914 – Gas explosion at Mitsubishi Hojyo coal mine, Kyushu, Japan, 687 killed. This accident is the worst coal mine disaster in Japanese history.
  • 1915 – World War I: Douglas Haig, 1st Earl Haig replaces John French, 1st Earl of Ypres as Commander-in-Chief of the British Expeditionary Force.
  • 1917 – World War I: An armistice is reached between the new Bolshevik government and the Central Powers.
  • 1941 – Annihilation of Jews in Kharkiv, Ukraine: at temperatures of -15 degrees C below zero near the Rogan works, 8 km away from Kharkiv in “Drobitsky Ravine” (Drobitsky Yar), over 15 000 Jews are shot.
  • 1941 – The American Federation of Labor adopts a no-strike policy in war industries.
  • 1945 – Occupation of Japan: General Douglas MacArthur orders that Shinto be abolished as state religion of Japan.
  • 1960 – King Baudouin of Belgium marries Fabiola Fernanda María de las Victorias Antonia Adelaida de Mora y Aragón in Brussels.
  • 1960 – Richard Paul Pavlick is arrested for attempting to blow up and assassinate the U.S. President-Elect, John F. Kennedy only four days earlier.
  • 1961 – In Jerusalem, Adolph Eichmann is sentenced to death after being found guilty of 15 criminal charges, including charges of crimes against humanity, crimes against the Jewish people and membership of an outlawed organization.
  • 1965 – Gemini program: Gemini 6A, crewed by Wally Schirra and Thomas Stafford, is launched from Cape Kennedy, Florida. Four orbits later, it achieved the first space rendezvous with Gemini 7.
  • 1967 – The Silver Bridge collapses, killing 46 people.
  • 1970 – Illinois State Constitution is adopted at a special election.
  • 1970 – South Korean ferry Namyong Ho capsized off Korean Strait, 308 killed.
  • 1973 – John Paul Getty III, grandson of J. Paul Getty, American billionaire is found alive near Naples, Italy, after being kidnapped by an Italian gang on July 10, 1973
  • 1976 – Samoa becomes a member of the UN.
  • 1978 – President Jimmy Carter announces that the United States will recognize the People’s Republic of China and cutoff all relations with Taiwan
  • 1993 – History of Northern Ireland: The Downing Street Declaration is issued by British Prime Minister John Major and Irish Taoiseach Albert Reynolds.
  • 1994 – Palau becomes a member of the UN.
  • 1995 – The European Communities Court of Justice hands down the “Bosman ruling,” giving EU footballers the right to a free transfer at the end of their contracts, with the provision that they are transferring from one UEFA Federation to another.
  • 1997 – A chartered Tupolev TU-154 from Tajikistan crashes in the desert near Sharja, United Arab Emirates airport killing 85.
  • 2001 – The Leaning Tower of Pisa reopens after 11 years and $27,000,000 to fortify it, without fixing its famous lean.
  •  2005 – Latvia amends its constitution to eliminate possibility of gays and lesbians being entitled to marry.
  • 2005 – Argentina’s president Néstor Kirchner announces the early repayment of its external debt to the IMF.
  • 2005 – Introduction of the F-22 Raptor into USAF active service.
  • 2005 – The 2005 Atlantic Power Outage began.
  • 2006 – First flight of the F-35 Lightning II.

December 15 – Birthdays:

  • 37 – Nero, Roman Emperor of the Julio-Claudian dynasty (d. 68)
  • 1832 – Gustave Eiffel, French engineer and architect (Eiffel tower) (d. 1923)
  • 1852 – Henri Becquerel, French physicist, Nobel laureate (d. 1908)
  • 1859 – L. L. Zamenhof, Polish initiator of Esperanto (d. 1917)
  • 1860 – Niels Ryberg Finsen, Danish physician, Nobel laureate (d. 1904)
  • 1860 – Abner Powell, American baseball player (d. 1953)
  • 1861 – Charles Duryea, American automobile pioneer (d. 1938)
  • 1878 – Hans Carossa, German writer (d. 1956)
  • 1888 – Maxwell Anderson, American writer (d. 1959)
  • 1892 – J. Paul Getty, American oil tycoon (d. 1976)
  • 1896 – Betty Smith, American author (d. 1972)
  • 1899 – Harold Abrahams, English sprinter (d. 1978)
  • 1902 – Robert F. Bradford, 57 Governor of Massachusetts (d. 1983)
  • 1907 – Oscar Niemeyer, Brazilian architect
  • 1910 – John H. Hammond, American musician (d. 1987)
  • 1911 – Stan Kenton, American musician (d. 1979)
  • 1912 – Ray Eames, American designer (d. 1988)
  • 1913 – Roger Gaudry, French Canadian chemist, businessman and corporate director (d. 2001)
  • 1913 – Muriel Rukeyser, American poet (d. 1980)
  • 1916 – Buddy Cole, American pianist (d. 1964)
  • 1916 – Maurice Wilkins, New Zealand-born physicist, Nobel laureate (d. 2004)
  • 1917 – Shan-ul-Haq Haqqee, linguist and writer of Pakistan (d. 2005)
  • 1918 – Jeff Chandler, American actor (d. 1961)
  • 1919 – Max Yasgur, owner of the Woodstock Festival site (d. 1973)
  • 1920 – Kurt Schaffenberger, American comics artist (d. 2002)
  • 1921 – Alan Freed, American disc jockey (d. 1965)
  • 1923 – Freeman Dyson, English-born American physicist
  • 1923 – Uziel Gal, Israeli firearm designer (d. 2002)
  • 1923 – Valentin Varennikov, Russian general and statesman
  • 1925 – Sam Pollock, Canadian ice hockey general manager
  • 1925 – Kasey Rogers, American actress (d. 2006)
  • 1928 – Friedensreich Hundertwasser, Austrian artist (d. 2000)
  • 1928 – Jerry Wallace, American singer
  • 1929 – Barry Harris, American bebop jazz pianist
  • 1930 – Edna O’Brien, Irish novelist and short story writer
  • 1932 – Jesse Belvin, American musician (d. 1960)
  • 1933 – Bapu, Indian cartoonist, designer and film director
  • 1933 – Tim Conway, American actor and comedian
  • 1933 – Donald Woods, South African journalist and anti-apartheid activist (d. 2001)
  • 1938 – Billy Shaw, American football player
  • 1939 – Cindy Birdsong, American singer (The Supremes)
  • 1940 – Nick Buoniconti, American football player
  • 1942 – Dave Clark, English musician (The Dave Clark Five)
  • 1943 – Kathleen Blanco, American politician
  • 1943 – Lucien den Arend, Dutch artist
  • 1944 – Jim Leyland, American baseball manager
  • 1944 – Chico Mendes, Brazilian campaigner (d. 1988)
  • 1945 – Thaao Penghlis, Australian actor
  • 1946 – Art Howe, American baseball player and manager
  • 1948 – Melanie Chartoff, American actress
  • 1948 – Cassandra Harris, Australian actress (d. 1991)
  • 1949 – Don Johnson, American actor
  • 1952 – Allan Simonsen, Danish footballer
  • 1952 – Julie Taymor, American director
  • 1953 – J. M. DeMatteis, American comic book writer
  • 1955 – Paul Simonon, English bassist (The Clash)
  • 1957 – Mario Marois, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1957 – Mike McAlary, American journalist (d. 1998)
  • 1957 – Yuuichi Nagashima, Japanese voice actor
  • 1957 – Laura Molina, American artist, musician and actress
  • 1960 – Walter Werzowa, Austrian composer
  • 1961 – Karin Resetarits, Austrian journalist
  • 1963 – Andrew Luster, Max Factor heir
  • 1963 – Helen Slater, American actress
  • 1966 – Manos Papayiannis, Greek fashion model and actor
  • 1967 – David Howells, English footballer
  • 1967 – Mo Vaughn, American baseball player
  • 1968 – Javid Hussain, Indian film producer
  • 1968 – Osama Ali Maher, Swedish politician
  • 1968 – Garrett Wang, American actor
  • 1969 – Chantal Petitclerc, Canadian wheelchair athlete
  • 1970 – Frankie Dettori, Italian jockey
  • 1970 – Michael Shanks, Canadian actor
  • 1972 – Rodney Harrison, American football player
  • 1972 – Stuart Townsend, Irish actor
  • 1973 – Surya Bonaly, French-born American figure skater1973 – Ryu Seung-wan, South Korean actor and director
  • 1976 – Baichung Bhutia, Indian footballer
  • 1976 – Aaron Miles, American baseball player
  • 1976 – Elix Skipper, American professional wrestler
  • 1978 – Mark Jansen, Dutch guitarist (Epica) 1978 – Jerome McDougle, American football player
  • 1979 – Adam Brody, American actor
  • 1979 – Eric Young, Canadian professional wrestler
  • 1980 – Sergio Pizzorno, English guitarist (Kasabian)
  • 1981 – Najoua Belyzel, French singer
  • 1981 – Brendan Fletcher, Canadian actor
  • 1981 – Andy González, Puerto Rican baseball player
  • 1981 – Thomas Herrion, American football player (d. 2005)
  • 1981 – Creighton Lovelace, American Baptist minister
  • 1982 – Charlie Cox, English actor
  • 1982 – Borja García, Spanish racing driver
  • 1982 – George O. Gore II, American actor
  • 1983 – René Goguen (René Duprée), Canadian professional wrestler
  • 1983 – Ronnie Radke, American singer (Escape the Fate)
  • 1983 – Wang Hao, Chinese table tennis player
  • 1984 – Joshua Third, British Guitarist in The Horrors.
  • 1986 – Snejana Onopka, Ukrainian supermodel
  • 1991 – Eunice Cho, American actress

December 15 – Deaths:

  • 1025 – Basil II, Byzantine Emperor (b. 958)
  • 1072 – Alp Arslan, Turkish sultan in Persia (b. 1029)
  • 1230 – King Otakar I of Bohemia
  • 1263 – King Haakon IV of Norway (b. 1204)
  • 1598 – Philips van Marnix, lord of Sint-Aldegonde, Dutch writer and statesman (b. 1538)
  • 1621 – Charles de Luynes, Constable of France (b. 1578)
  • 1673 – Margaret Cavendish, English writer (b. 1623)
  • 1675 – Johannes Vermeer, Dutch painter (b. 1632)
  • 1683 – Izaak Walton, English writer (b. 1593)
  • 1688 – Gaspar Fagel, Dutch statesman (b. 1634)
  • 1715 – George Hickes, English minister and scholar (b. 1642)
  • 1753 – Richard Boyle, 3rd Earl of Burlington, English architect (b. 1694)
  • 1792 – Joseph Martin Kraus, Swedish composer (b. 1756)
  • 1855 – Jacques Charles François Sturm, French mathematician (b. 1803)
  • 1890 – Sitting Bull, Sioux nation leader (b. circa 1831)
  • 1943 – Fats Waller, American musician (b. 1904)
  • 1944 – Glenn Miller, American musician (later declared dead on this date, exact date of death unknown) (b. 1904)
  • 1947 – Arthur Machen, Welsh author (b. 1863)
  • 1950 – Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, Indian political leader, Iron Man of India (b. 1875)
  • 1958 – Wolfgang Ernst Pauli, Austrian-born American physicist, Nobel laureate (b. 1900)
  • 1962 – Charles Laughton, English actor (b. 1899)
  • 1966 – Walt Disney, American animator (b. 1901)
  • 1968 – Antonio Barrette, Canadian politician, premier of Quebec (b. 1899)
  • 1968 – Jess Willard, American boxer (b. 1881)
  • 1971 – Paul Pierre Lévy, French mathematician (b. 1886)
  • 1974 – Anatole Litvak, Ukrainian-born screenwriter and film producer (b. 1902)
  • 1977 – Wilfred Kitching, the 7th General of The Salvation Army (b. 1893)
  • 1978 – Chill Wills, American actor (b. 1903)
  • 1984 – Lennard Pearce, English actor (b. 1915)
  • 1984 – Jan Peerce, American tenor (b. 1904)
  • 1989 – Arnold Moss, American actor (b. 1910)
  • 1989 – Edward Underdown, English actor (b. 1908)
  • 1991 – Vasily Grigoryevich Zaitsev, Soviet sniper (b. 1915)
  • 2001 – Russ Haas, American professional wrestler (b. 1974)
  • 2001 – Rufus Thomas, American musician (b. 1917)
  • 2003 – George Fisher, American political cartoonist (b. 1923)
  • 2003 – Keith Magnuson, Canadian ice hockey player (b. 1947)
  • 2004 – Pauline Gore, mother of Al Gore (b. 1912)
  • 2005 – Heinrich Gross, Austrian physician (b. 1914)
  • 2005 – Stan Leonard, Canadian golfer (b. 1915)
  • 2005 – William Proxmire, U.S. Senator from Wisconsin (b. 1915)
  • 2005 – Darrell Russell, American football player (b. 1976)
  • 2006 – Clay Regazzoni, Swiss Formula One driver (b. 1939)
  • 2007 – John Berg (actor), American actor (b. 1949)
  • 2007 – Julia Carson, U.S. Congresswoman from Indiana (b. 1938)

December 15 – Holidays :

  • Roman festivals – Consualia in honor of Consus is held.
  • Bill of Rights Day, as stated by Franklin Roosevelt.

 

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On This Day in History December 14

December 14 – Events:

  • 1287 – St. Lucia’s flood: The Zuider Zee sea wall in the Netherlands collapses, killing over  50,000 people.
  • 1542 – Princess Mary Stuart becomes Queen Mary I of Scotland.
  • 1702 (according to the old calendar; January 30, 1703 by the new calendar) – The Fortyseven Ronin, under the command of Oishi Kuranosuke, avenge the death of their master.
  • 1751 – The Theresian Military Academy is founded as the first Military Academy in the world.
  • 1782 – The Montgolfier brothers first balloon lifts on its first test flight.
  • 1819 – Alabama becomes the 22nd U.S. state.
  • 1825 – Advocates of Liberalism in Russia rise up against Tsar Nicholas I and are put down in the Decembrist Revolt in St. Petersburg.
  • 1836 – The Toledo War unofficially ends.
  • 1896 – The Glasgow Underground Railway is opened by the Glasgow District Subway Company.
  • 1900 – Quantum Mechanics: Max Planck presents a theoretical derivation of his  blackbody radiation law.
  • 1902 – The Commercial Pacific Cable Company lays the first Pacific telegraph cable, from Ocean Beach, San Francisco to Honolulu, Hawaii.
  • 1903 – The Wright Brothers make their first attempt to fly with the Wright Flyer at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.
  • 1907 – The schooner Thomas W. Lawson runs aground and founders near the Hellweather’s Reef within the Scilly Isles in a gale. The pilot and 15 seamen die.
  • 1911 – Roald Amundsen’s team, comprising himself, Olav Bjaaland, Helmer Hanssen, Sverre Hassel, and Oscar Wisting, becomes the first to reach the South Pole.
  • 1914 – Lisandro de la Torre and others found the Democratic Progressist Party (Partido Demócrata Progresista, PDP) at the Hotel Savoy, Buenos Aires.
  • 1918 – Friedrich Karl von Hessen, a German prince elected by the Parliament of Finland to become King Väinö I, renounces the Finnish throne.
  • 1939 – Winter War: The Soviet Union is expelled from the League of Nations.
  • 1941 – German military commander of Kharkiv, Ukraine issues an order, under which the Jewish population was to move to the city periphery within 2 days, into the barracks of the works of a machine factory. In the next days 15,000 Jews are shot at Drobitsky Yar.
  • 1941 – World War II: Japan signs treaty of alliance with Thailand.
  • 1946 – The UN General Assembly votes to establish its headquarters in New York City.
  • 1947 – The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) is founded in Daytona Beach, Florida.
  • 1955 – Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, Finland, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Jordan, Laos, Portugal, Romania and Spain join the United Nations.
  • 1958 – The 3rd Soviet Antarctic Expedition becomes the first expedition to reach The Pole of Relative Inaccessibility in the Antarctic.
  • 1962 – NASA’s Mariner 2 becomes the first spacecraft to fly by Venus.
  • 1964 – American Civil Rights Movement: Heart of Atlanta Motel v. United States – The United States Supreme Court rules that the U.S. Congress can use its Commerce Clause power to fight discrimination.
  • 1972 – Apollo program: Eugene Cernan is the last person to walk on the moon, after he and Harrison Schmitt complete the third and final Extra-vehicular activity (EVA) of Apollo 17. This was the last manned mission to the moon of the 20th century.
  • 1981 – Arab-Israeli conflict: Israel’s Knesset passes The Golan Heights Law, extending Israeli law to the area of the Golan Heights.
  • 1995 – Yugoslav Wars: The Dayton Agreement is signed in Paris by leaders of various governments.
  • 2003 – President of Pakistan Pervez Musharaf narrowly escapes an assassination attempt.
  • 2004 – The Millau viaduct, the highest bridge in the world, near Millau, France is officially opened.

December 14 – Birthdays:

  • 1009 – Emperor Go-Suzaku of Japan (d. 1045)
  • 1503 – Nostradamus, French astrologer (d. 1566)
  • 1546 – Tycho Brahe, Danish astronomer and alchemist (d. 1601)
  • 1625 – Barthélemy d’Herbelot de Molainville, French orientalist (d. 1695)
  • 1631 – Anne Conway, Viscountess Conway, English philosopher (d. 1679)
  • 1640 – (baptism date) – Aphra Behn, English playwright and novelist (d. 1689)
  • 1678 – Daniel Neal, English historian (d. 1743)
  • 1720 – Justus Möser, German statesman (d. 1794)
  • 1775 – Philander Chase, American founder of Kenyon College (d. 1852)
  • 1775 – Thomas Cochrane, 10th Earl of Dundonald, British admiral (d. 1860)
  • 1784 – Princess Maria Antonia of Naples and Sicily, Princess of Asturias (d. 1806)
  • 1787 – Maria Ludovika of Austria-Este, Empress of Austria and queen of Hungary and Bohemia (d. 1816)
  • 1824 – Pierre Puvis de Chavannes, French painter (d. 1898)
  • 1866 – Roger Fry, English artist and art critic (d. 1934)
  • 1870 – Karl Renner, President of Austria (d. 1950)
  • 1881 – Katherine MacDonald, American actress and film producer (d. 1956)
  • 1884 – Jane Cowl, American actress and playwright (d. 1950)
  • 1895 – Paul Eluard, French poet (d. 1952)
  • 1895 – King George VI of the United Kingdom (d. 1952)
  • 1896 – Jimmy Doolittle, American General (d. 1993)
  • 1897 – Margaret Chase Smith, American politician (d. 1995)
  • 1897 – Kurt Schuschnigg, Austrian politician (d. 1977)
  • 1902 – Frances Bavier, American actress (d. 1989)
  • 1908 – Morey Amsterdam, American comedian and actor (d. 1996)
  • 1908 – Claude Davey, Welsh rugby union footballer
  • 1908 – Mária Szepes, Hungarian authoress (d. 2007)
  • 1909 – Edward Tatum, American geneticist, Nobel laureate (d. 1975)
  • 1911 – Spike Jones, American comedian and musician (d. 1965)
  • 1911 – Hans von Ohain, German/American aerospace engineer (d. 1998)
  • 1913 – Dan Dailey, American actor (d. 1978)
  • 1914 – Karl Carstens, President of Germany (d. 1992)
  • 1914 – Attila Petschauer, Hungarian fencer (d. 1943)
  • 1914 – Rosalyn Tureck, American pianist and harpsichordist (d. 2003)
  • 1916 – Shirley Jackson, American writer (d. 1965)
  • 1917 – C.-H. Hermansson, Swedish communist leader
  • 1917 – June Taylor, American choreographer (d. 2004)
  • 1917 – Elyse Knox, American Actress
  • 1918 – James T. Aubrey, American television executive (d. 1994)
  • 1918 – B.K.S. Iyengar, Indian yoga advocate
  • 1920 – Clark Terry, American trumpeter
  • 1922 – Nikolay Basov, Soviet physicist, Nobel laureate (d. 2001)
  • 1922 – Don Hewitt, American creator of 60 Minutes
  • 1923 – Gerard Reve, Dutch writer
  • 1924 – Raj Kapoor, Indian actor (d. 1988)
  • 1925 – Sam Jones, American baseball player (d. 1971)
  • 1927 – Richard Cassilly, American tenor (d.1998)
  • 1931 – Jon Elia, Pakistani scholar, poet and philosopher (d. 2002)
  • 1932 – Abbe Lane, American singer and actress
  • 1932 – Charlie Rich, American musician (d. 1995)
  • 1935 – Lewis Arquette, American film actor, writer and producer (d. 2001)
  • 1935 – Lee Remick, American actress (d. 1991)
  • 1938 – Leonardo Boff, Brazilian theologian
  • 1939 – Ernie Davis, American football player (d. 1963)
  • 1940 – Lex Gold, Scottish football administrator
  • 1941 – Karan Armstrong, American soprano
  • 1941 – Ellen Willis, American journalist (d. 2006)
  • 1942 – Zoe Laskari, Greek actress
  • 1943 – Emmett Tyrrell, American magazine publisher
  • 1946 – Jane Birkin, English-born French actress and singer
  • 1946 – Patty Duke, American actress
  • 1946 – Ruth Fuchs, East German athlete
  • 1946 – Michael Ovitz, American film producer
  • 1946 – Stan Smith, American tennis player
  • 1946 – Joyce Vincent Wilson, American singer (Tony Orlando and Dawn)
  • 1947 – Christopher Parkening, American guitarist
  • 1947 – Linda Sutton, English artist
  • 1948 – Lester Bangs, American music journalist (d. 1982)
  • 1948 – Dee Wallace-Stone, American actress
  • 1949 – Bill Buckner, American baseball player
  • 1949 – Cliff Williams, English bassist (AC/DC)
  • 1951 – Jan Timman, Dutch chess grandmaster
  • 1952 – Germain Houde, French Canadian actor
  • 1953 – Vijay Amritraj, Indian tennis player
  • 1953 – René Eespere, Soviet-born Estonian composer
  • 1953 – Vangelis Meimarakis, Greek lawyer and politician
  • 1953 – Mikael Odenberg, Swedish politician
  • 1954 – James Horan, American actor
  • 1954 – Alan Kulwicki, American NASCAR driver (d. 1993)
  • 1954 – Steven MacLean, Canadian astronaut
  • 1956 – Hanni Wenzel, Liechtenstein skier
  • 1957 – Gary Ferris, American author
  • 1958 – Mike Scott, Scottish singer-songwriter (The Waterboys)
  • 1958 – Spider Stacy, English musician (The Pogues)
  • 1959 – Jorge Vaca, Mexican boxer
  • 1960 – Bob Paris, American bodybuilder and gay rights advocate
  • 1960 – Chris Waddle, English footballer
  • 1962 – Ginger Lynn (Ginger Lynn Allen), American adult film actress
  • 1963 – Cynthia Gibb, American actress
  • 1965 – Craig Biggio, American baseball player
  • 1965 – Ken Hill, American baseball player
  • 1966 – Fabrizio Giovanardi, Italian racecar driver
  • 1966 – Bill Ranford, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1966 – Tim Skold, Swedish/American musician
  • 1967 – Ewa Bialolecka, Polish writer
  • 1969 – Scott Hatteberg, American baseball player
  • 1970 – Nadine Garner, Australian actress
  • 1970 – Anna Maria Jopek, Polish singer
  • 1970 – Beth Orton, English singer-songwriter
  • 1971 – Natascha McElhone, English actress
  • 1972 – Eric Anderson, American musical theatre actor
  • 1972 – Marcus Jensen, American baseball player
  • 1973 – Tomasz Radzinski, Polish-born Canadian soccer player
  • 1973 – Tia Texada, American actress and singer
  • 1973 – Thuy Trang, American actress (d. 2001)
  • 1974 – Billy Koch, American baseball player
  • 1975 – Justin Furstenfeld, American rock singer
  • 1976 – Leland Chapman, American bounty hunter
  • 1976 – André Couto, Portuguese racing driver
  • 1976 – Santiago Ezquerro, Spanish footballer
  • 1977 – KaDee Strickland, American actress
  • 1978 – Kim St-Pierre, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1978 – Radu Sârbu, Moldovan singer (O-Zone)
  • 1978 – Patty Schnyder, Swiss tennis player
  • 1979 – Sophie Monk, Australian actress, singer, and model
  • 1979 – Michael Owen, English footballer
  • 1980 – Frankie J, American singer
  • 1980 – Tata Young, Thai-American singer
  • 1980 – Didier Zokora, Ivorian footballer
  • 1981 – Amber Chia, Malaysian model and actress
  • 1981 – Emilie Heymans, Canadian diver
  • 1981 – Johnny Jeter, American professional  wrestler
  • 1981 – Shaun Marcum, American baseball player
  • 1982 – Josh Fields, American baseball player
  • 1982 – Steve Sidwell, English footballer
  • 1982 – Anthony Way, English singer and actor
  • 1984 – Chris Brunt, Northern Irish footballer
  • 1984 – Edward Rainsford, Zimbabwean cricketer
  • 1985 – Jakub Blaszczykowski, Polish footballer
  • 1985 – Julio Pimentel, Dominican baseball player
  • 1985 – Tom Smith, Welsh rugby union footballer
  • 1985 – Nonami Takizawa, Japanese actress
  • 1988 – Nicolas Batum, French basketball player
  • 1988 – Vanessa Hudgens, American singer and actress
  • 1989 – Pedro Silva, Brazilian footballer
  • 1992 – Tori Kelly, American singer
  • 1995 – Princess Olimpia Preslavska of Bulgaria

December 14 – Deaths:

  • 1460 – Guarino da Verona(b. 1370)
  • 1476 – Vlad III the Impaler (b. 1431)
  • 1510 – Friedrich of Saxony (b. 1473)
  • 1542 – King James V of Scotland (b. 1512)
  • 1553 – Hanibal Lucic, Croatian writer (b. 1485)
  • 1591 – Saint John of the Cross, Spanish friar and poet (b. 1542)
  • 1624 – Charles Howard, 1st Earl of Nottingham, English statesman (b. 1536)
  • 1651 – Pierre Dupuy, French scholar (b. 1582)
  • 1713 – Thomas Rymer, English historian (b. 1641)
  • 1715 – Thomas Tenison, Archbishop of Canterbury (b. 1636)
  • 1735 – Thomas Tanner, English bishop and antiquarian (b. 1674)
  • 1741 – Charles Rollin, French historian (b. 1661)
  • 1788 – Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach, German composer (b. 1714)
  • 1788 – King Charles III of Spain (b. 1716)
  • 1799 – George Washington, first President of the United Statesdies in his residence Mount Vernon due to throat infection (b. 1732)
  • 1838 – Jean-Olivier Chénier, French Canadian physician and Patriote (b. 1806)
  • 1860 – George Hamilton-Gordon, 4th Earl of Aberdeen, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (b. 1784)
  • 1861 – Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, consort of Queen Victoria (b. 1819)
  • 1865 – Johan Georg Forchhammer, Danish geologist (b. 1794)
  • 1873 – Louis Agassiz, Swiss-born American zoologist and geologist (b. 1807)
  • 1902 – Julia Grant, wife of President of the United States Ulysses S. Grant (b. 1826)
  • 1920 – George Gipp, American football player (b. 1895)
  • 1927 – Yulian Vasilievich Sokhotski, Russian mathematician (b. 1842)
  • 1935 – Stanley G. Weinbaum, American science-fiction author (b. 1902)
  • 1947 – Stanley Baldwin, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (b. 1867)
  • 1947 – Edward Higgins, General of The Salvation Army (b. 1864)
  • 1956 – Juho Kusti Paasikivi, president of Finland (b. 1870)
  • 1963 – Dinah Washington, American singer (b. 1924)
  • 1964 – William Bendix, American actor (b. 1906)
  • 1970 – Franz Schlegelberger, German Nazi politician (b. 1876)
  • 1971 – Dick Tiger, Nigerian-born boxer (b. 1929)
  • 1974 – Walter Lippman, American writer, journalist, and political commentator (b. 1889)
  • 1975 – Arthur Treacher, English actor (b. 1894)
  • 1978 – Salvador de Madariaga, Spanish diplomat, writer, historian and pacifist (b. 1886)
  • 1984 – Vicente Aleixandre, Spanish writer and Nobel laureate (b. 1898)
  • 1985 – Catherine Doherty, social justice activist (b. 1896)
  • 1985 – Roger Maris, American baseball player (b. 1934)
  • 1989 – Jock Mahoney, American actor and stuntman (b. 1919)
  • 1989 – Andrei D. Sakharov, Russian physicist, recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize (b. 1921)
  • 1990 – Friedrich Dürrenmatt, Swiss writer (b. 1921)
  • 1993 – Jeff Alm, American football player (b. 1968)
  • 1993 – Myrna Loy, American actress (b. 1905)
  • 1994 – Orval Faubus, Governor of Arkansas (b. 1910)
  • 1996 – Gaston Miron, French Canadian poet and editor (b. 1928)
  • 1997 – Stubby Kaye, American actor (b. 1918)
  • 1997 – Kurt Winter, Canadian musician (The Guess Who) (b. 1946)
  • 1998 – Norman Fell, American actor (b. 1924)
  • 1998 – Aloyisus Leon Higginbotham, Jr., American civil rights activist and author (b. 1928)
  • 1998 – Annette Strauss, American philanthropist (b. 1924)
  • 2001 – W. G. Sebald, German writer (b. 1944)
  • 2003 – Jeanne Crain, American actress (b. 1925)
  • 2003 – Blas Ople, foreign minister of the Philippines (b. 1927)
  • 2004 – Rod Kanehl, American baseball player (b. 1934)
  • 2004 – Fernando Poe, Jr., Filipino actor and presidential candidate (b. 1939)
  • 2005 – Trevanian, American author (b. 1931)
  • 2006 – Anton Balasingham, chief political strategist of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (b. 1938)
  • 2006 – Ahmet Ertegün, co-founder of Atlantic Records (b. 1923)
  • 2006 – Mike Evans, American actor (b. 1949)
  • 2007 – Ali Shafeya, Iraqi journalist (b. 1984)

December 14 – Holidays or Events:

  • You know, I couldn’t find any for this date!

 

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