This Day in History

Daily historical facts, events, famous birthdays, world history. Discover what happened today in history.

Day History: December-16

Events HistoryFamous BirthdaysHistory of Deaths

Famous Birthdays


1485- Catherine of Aragon -(d. 1536)

1584- John Selden -English jurist and scholar (d. 1654)

1614- Eberhard III, Duke of Württemberg -(d. 1674)

1716- Louis Jules Mancini Mazarini -French diplomat (d. 1798)

1717- Elizabeth Carter -English poet and scholar (d. 1806)

1742- Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher -German field marshal (d. 1819)

1775- Jane Austen -English author (d. 1817)

1775- François-Adrien Boieldieu -French composer (d. 1834)

1776- Johann Wilhelm Ritter -German chemist, physicist, and philosopher (d. 1810)

1778- John Ordronaux (privateer)|John Ordronaux -French-American soldier (d. 1841)

1787- Mary Russell Mitford -English author and playwright (d. 1855)

1790- Leopold I of Belgium -(d. 1865)

1804- Viktor Bunyakovsky -Russian mathematician and academic (d. 1889)

1834- Léon Walras -French-Swiss economist and theorist (d. 1910)

1836- Ernst von Bergmann -Latvian-German surgeon and academic (d. 1907)

1861- Antonio de La Gándara -French painter and illustrator (d. 1917)

1863- George Santayana -Spanish philosopher and author (d. 1952)

1865- Olavo Bilac -Brazilian journalist and poet (d. 1918)

1866- Wassily Kandinsky -Russian-French painter and theorist (d. 1944)

1867- Amy Carmichael -Irish-Indian missionary (d. 1951)

1869- Hristo Tatarchev -Bulgarian physician and activist, co-founded the Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization (d. 1952)

1872- Anton Denikin -Russian general (d. 1947)

1882- Jack Hobbs -English cricketer and journalist (d. 1963)

1882- Zoltán Kodály -Hungarian composer, conductor, and musicologist (d. 1967)

1882- Walther Meissner -German physicist and engineer (d. 1974)

1883- Károly Kós -Hungarian-Romanian architect, ethnologist, and politician (d. 1977)

1883- Max Linder -French actor, director, producer, and screenwriter (d. 1925)

1884- Seibo Kitamura -Japanese sculptor (d. 1987)

1888- Alexander I of Yugoslavia -(d. 1934)

1888- Alphonse Juin -Algerian-French general (d. 1967)

1889- Kim Chwa-chin -South Korean guerrilla leader (d. 1930)

1895- Marie Hall Ets -American author and illustrator (d. 1984)

1899- Noël Coward -English actor, playwright, and composer (d. 1973)

1900- V. S. Pritchett -English author and critic (d. 1997)

1901- Margaret Mead -American anthropologist and author (d. 1978)

1902- Rafael Alberti -Spanish poet and playwright (d. 1999)

1903- Hardie Albright -American actor (d. 1975)

1905- Piet Hein (scientist)|Piet Hein -Danish mathematician, author, and poet (d. 1996)

1907- Barbara Kent -Canadian-American actress (d. 2011)

1910- Freddie Brown (cricketer)|Freddie Brown -Peruvian-English cricketer and sportscaster (d. 1991)

1913- George Ignatieff -Russian-Canadian diplomat, 8th List of Canadian ambassadors to the United Nations|Canadian Ambassador to the United Nations (d. 1989)

1913- Salik Lucknawi -Indian journalist and poet (d. 2013)

1915- Turk Murphy -American trombonist and singer (d. 1987)

1916- Birgitta Valberg -Swedish actress (d. 2014)

1917- Nabi Bux Khan Baloch -Pakistani author and scholar (d. 2011)

1917- Pete T. Cenarrusa -American politician, Secretary of State of Idaho (d. 2013)

1917- Arthur C. Clarke -English-Sri Lankan soldier and author (d. 2008)

1917- Ruth Johnson Colvin -American educator, founded ProLiteracy Worldwide

1918- Pierre Delanoë -French songwriter (d. 2006)

1918- Vida Hope -English actress (d. 1963)

1920- Frederick Rotimi Williams -Nigerian lawyer and politician (d. 2005)

1922- Cy Leslie -American record producer, founded Pickwick Records (d. 2008)

1923- Menahem Pressler -German-American pianist (Beaux Arts Trio)

1923- Ernst Florian Winter -Austrian-American historian and political scientist (d. 2014)

1924- Nicolas Sidjakov -Latvian-American illustrator (d. 1993)

1926- James McCracken -American tenor (d. 1988)

1926- A. N. R. Robinson -Trinbagonian politician, 3rd List of Presidents of Trinidad and Tobago|President of Trinidad and Tobago (d. 2014)

1927- Peter Dickinson -English author and poet

1927- Randall Garrett -American author (d. 1987)

1928- Terry Carter -American actor, director, and producer

1928- Philip K. Dick -American author (d. 1982)

1929- Nicholas Courtney -Egyptian-English actor (d. 2011)

1930- Bill Brittain -American author (d. 2011)

1930- Sam Most -American flute player and saxophonist (d. 2013)

1930- Bill Young -American sergeant and politician (d. 2013)

1931- Karl Denver -Scottish-English singer (d. 1998)

1932- Rodion Shchedrin -Russian pianist and composer

1932- Quentin Blake -English author and illustrator

1934- Louis Waldon -American actor (d. 2013)

1936- Morris Dees -American lawyer and activist, co-founded the Southern Poverty Law Center

1937- Joyce Bulifant -American actress and singer

1938- Frank Deford -American journalist and author

1938- Liv Ullmann -Japanese-Norwegian actress, director, and screenwriter

1939- Philip Langridge -English tenor and actor (d. 2010)

1939- Gordon Miller (athlete)|Gordon Miller -British high jumper

1941- Robert Kerman -American actor

1941- Lesley Stahl -American journalist

1941- Roger Wheeler (British Army officer)|Roger Wheeler -English general

1942- Donald Carcieri -American educator and politician, 73rd Governor of Rhode Island

1942- Eugene Robert Glazer -American actor

1943- Steven Bochco -American screenwriter and producer

1944- Jeff Kanew -American director and screenwriter

1944- Don Meyer -American basketball player and coach (d. 2014)

1945- Patti Deutsch -American actress

1945- Bobby George -English darts player

1945- Yukio Hattori -Japanese television host

1945- Tony Hicks -English guitarist and singer (The Hollies)

1946- Benny Andersson -Swedish singer-songwriter, pianist, and producer (ABBA and Hep Stars)

1946- Charles Dennis -Canadian actor, director, producer, and screenwriter

1946- Christopher Ellison -English actor

1946- Terence Knox -American actor

1946- Trevor Pinnock -English harpsichord player and conductor

1946- Tom Stern (cinematographer)|Tom Stern -American cinematographer

1947- Ben Cross -English actor

1947- Vincent Matthews (athlete)|Vincent Matthews -American sprinter

1947- Martyn Poliakoff -English chemist and academic

1948- Christopher Biggins -English actor

1949- Billy Gibbons -American guitarist, songwriter, producer, and actor (ZZ Top and Moving Sidewalks)

1949- Heather Hallett -English judge

1950- Claudia Cohen -American journalist (d. 2007)

1950- Roy Schuiten -Dutch cyclist and manager (d. 2006)

1951- Sally Emerson -English author and poet

1951- Mike Flanagan (baseball)|Mike Flanagan -American baseball player, coach, and sportscaster (d. 2011)

1951- Robben Ford -American guitarist and songwriter (L.A. Express and Yellowjackets)

1951- Mark Heard -American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and producer (d. 1992)

1952- Joel Garner -Barbadian cricketer and manager

1952- Francesco Graziani -Italian footballer and manager

1953- Rebecca Forstadt -American voice actress and screenwriter

1955- Xander Berkeley -American actor and producer

1955- Carol Browner -American lawyer and environmentalist, 8th Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency

1956- E. B. Lewis (illustrator)|E. B. Lewis -American illustrator

1957- Antonio Vega (singer)|Antonio Vega -Spanish singer-songwriter and guitarist (Nacha Pop) (d. 2009)

1958- Katie Leigh -American voice actress

1958- Bart Oates -American football player and lawyer

1959- Alison LaPlaca -American actress

1959- H. D. Kumaraswamy -Indian politician, 18th Chief Minister of Karnataka

1959- Alexander Lebedev -Russian businessman

1959- Steve Mattsson -American author and illustrator

1959- Larry Poindexter -American actor and singer

1960- Pat Van Den Hauwe -Belgian footballer and manager

1961- LaChanze -American actress, singer, and dancer

1961- André Andersen -Russian-Danish keyboard player, songwriter, and producer (Royal Hunt)

1961- Shane Black -American actor, director, and screenwriter

1961- Bill Hicks -American comedian, actor, and singer (d. 1994)

1961- Gretchen Palmer -American actress

1961- Sam Robards -American actor

1961- Jon Tenney -American actor and director

1962- Maruschka Detmers -Dutch-French actress

1962- William Perry (American football)|William Perry -American football player and wrestler

1962- Melanie Smith (actress)|Melanie Smith -American actress

1963- Benjamin Bratt -American actor and producer

1963- Jeff Carson -American singer-songwriter

1963- James Mangold -American director, producer, and screenwriter

1964- Heike Drechsler -German sprinter and long jumper

1964- Gail Harris -English actress and producer

1964- Georgie Parker -Australian actress

1964- Billy Ripken -American baseball player and sportscaster

1964- Paul Vogt -American actor

1964- Todd Glass -American comedian and actor

1965- Chris Jones (1990s outfielder)|Chris Jones -American baseball player and manager

1965- Melanie Sloan -American lawyer and activist

1965- Nancy Valen -American actress and producer

1966- Cliff Robinson (basketball, born 1966)|Clifford Robinson -American basketball player

1966- Dennis Wise -English footballer and manager

1967- Donovan Bailey -Canadian sprinter and sportscaster

1967- Indrek Kaseorg -Estonian decathlete

1967- Miranda Otto -Australian actress

1968- Peter Dante -American actor and singer

1968- Lalah Hathaway -American singer-songwriter, pianist, and producer

1968- Greg Kovacs -Canadian bodybuilder (d. 2013)

1968- Mark Dean Schwab -American rapist and murderer (d. 2008)

1969- Shane (pornographic actress)|Shane -American porn actress and director

1969- Florencia Lozano -American actress

1969- Adam Riess -American astrophysicist, astronomer, and academic Nobel Prize in Physics|Nobel Prize laureate

1969- Dmitri Tymoczko -American composer and theorist

1969- Craig White -English cricketer and coach

1970- Valerie Chow -Canadian-Hong Kong actress

1970- Daniel Cosgrove -American actor

1971- Seyhan Kurt -French-Turkish poet and sociologist

1971- Michael McCary -American singer-songwriter (Boyz II Men)

1971- Paul van Dyk -German DJ and producer

1972- Charles Gipson -American baseball player

1972- Željko Kalac -Australian footballer and coach

1972- Paul Leyden -Australian actor, director, producer, and screenwriter

1972- Travis Morrison -American singer-songwriter (The Dismemberment Plan)

1973- Sarah Kozer -American model and actress

1973- Themba Mnguni -South African footballer

1973- Jason Molina -American singer-songwriter and guitarist (d. 2013)

1973- Luisa Ranieri -Italian actress

1973- Scott Storch -American songwriter and producer, founded Storch Music Company

1974- Frida Hallgren -Swedish actress

1974- Sarah Paulson -American actress

1974- Earl C. Poitier -American actor

1975- Valentin Bădoi -Romanian footballer manager

1975- Nao Kawakita -Japanese drummer (Maximum the Hormone)

1975- Benjamin Kowalewicz -Canadian singer-songwriter and guitarist (Billy Talent)

1975- Paul Maynard -English politician

1975- Jonathan Scarfe -Canadian actor

1977- Éric Bélanger -Canadian ice hockey player

1977- Sylvain Distin -French footballer

1978- Joe Absolom -English actor

1978- John Morris (curler)|John Morris -Canadian curler

1978- Gunter Van Handenhoven -Belgian footballer and manager

1979- Luke Harper -American wrestler

1979- Trevor Immelman -South African golfer

1979- Mihai Trăistariu -Romanian singer-songwriter

1979- Jessie Ward -American wrestler

1980- Danish Kaneria -Pakistani cricketer

1981- Imran Nazir -Pakistani cricketer

1981- Krysten Ritter -American model, actress, and producer

1981- Anna Sedokova -Ukrainian-American singer and actress

1981- Gareth Williams (Scottish footballer)|Gareth Williams -Scottish footballer

1982- Garnon Davies -Welsh actor

1982- Justin Mentell -American actor (d. 2010)

1982- Antrel Rolle -American football player

1982- Stanislav Šesták -Slovakian footballer

1983- Kelenna Azubuike -American basketball player

1983- Frankie Ballard -American singer-songwriter

1983- Danielle O'Hara -English model

1984- Theo James -English-American actor and singer

1985- Rachel Bright -English actress

1985- Stanislav Manolev -Bulgarian footballer

1985- Amanda Setton -American actress

1985- Keita Tachibana -Japanese singer and dancer (W-inds)

1986- Candice Crawford -American model and journalist

1986- Alcides Escobar -Venezuelan baseball player

1986- Zoltán Kovács (footballer born 1986)|Zoltán Kovács -Hungarian footballer (d. 2013)

1986- Pärt Uusberg -Estonian actor, composer and conductor

1987- Mame Biram Diouf -Senegalese footballer

1987- Beau Dowler -Australian footballer

1987- Hallee Hirsh -American actress

1988- Mats Hummels -German footballer

1988- Anna Popplewell -English actress

1988- Park Seo-joon -South Korean actor and model

1992- Ulrikke Eikeri -Norwegian tennis player

1992- Anamul Haque -Bangladeshi cricketer

1992- Tom Rogic -Australian footballer

1993- Jyoti Amge -Indian dwarf

1994- Elliot Lee -English footballer

1994- Nicola Murru -Italian footballer

1994- Stephen Sutton -English activist and blogger (d. 2014)

1994- José Rodríguez Martínez -Spanish footballer

History of Deaths


705- Wu Zetian -Chinese empress (b. 625)

714- Pepin of Herstal -(b. 635)

867- Eberhard of Friuli -(b. 815)

999- Adelaide of Italy -(b. 931)

1263- Haakon IV of Norway -(b. 1204)

1325- Charles, Count of Valois -(b. 1270)

1378- Secondotto, Marquess of Montferrat -(b. 1360)

1379- John FitzAlan, 1st Baron Arundel -English general and politician, Earl Marshal#Lords Marshal of England, 1135–1397|Lord Marshall of England (b. 1348)

1470- John II, Duke of Lorraine -(b. 1425)

1515- Afonso de Albuquerque -Portuguese admiral and politician, 3rd List of governors of Portuguese India|Viceroy of Portuguese India (b. 1453)

1598- Yi Sun-sin -Korean admiral (b. 1545)

1669- Nathaniel Fiennes -English soldier and politician (b. 1608)

1687- William Petty -English economist and philosopher (b. 1623)

1751- Leopold II, Prince of Anhalt-Dessau -(b. 1700)

1765- Peter Frederick Haldimand -Swiss-Canadian lieutenant and surveyor (b. 1741)

1774- François Quesnay -French economist, physician, and philosopher (b. 1694)

1783- Johann Adolph Hasse -German composer and educator (b. 1699)

1783- Sir William James, 1st Baronet -Welsh-English commander and politician (b. 1720)

1809- Antoine François, comte de Fourcroy -French chemist and entomologist (b. 1755)

1859- Wilhelm Grimm -German anthropologist and author (b. 1786)

1892- Henry Yesler -American businessman and politician, 7th Mayor of Seattle (b. 1810)

1897- Alphonse Daudet -French author, poet, and playwright (b. 1840)

1898- Pavel Tretyakov -Russian businessman and art collector (b. 1832)

1914- Ivan Zajc -Croatian composer, conductor, and educator (b. 1832)

1916- Ognjeslav Kostović Stepanović -Serbian inventor (b. 1851)

1917- Frank Gotch -American wrestler (b. 1878)

1921- Camille Saint-Saëns -French pianist, composer, and conductor (b. 1835)

1922- Gabriel Narutowicz -Lithuanian-Polish engineer and politician, 1st President of the Republic of Poland (b. 1865)

1925- Maurice Lecoq -French target shooter (b. 1854)

1928- Elinor Wylie -American poet and author (b. 1885)

1930- Herman Lamm -German-American bank robber (b. 1890)

1935- Thelma Todd -American actress and singer (b. 1905)

1940- Billy Hamilton (baseball, born 1866)|Billy Hamilton -American baseball player (b. 1866)

1944- Betsie ten Boom -Dutch The Holocaust|holocaust victim (b. 1885)

1945- Giovanni Agnelli -Italian businessman, founded the Fiat|Fiat Automobile Company (b. 1866)

1945- Fumimaro Konoe -Japanese politician, 23rd Prime Minister of Japan (b. 1891)

1948- Denham Fouts -American prostitute (b. 1914)

1949- Sidney Olcott -Canadian-American actor, director, producer, and screenwriter (b. 1873)

1952- Robert Henry Best -American journalist (b. 1896)

1956- Nina Hamnett -Welsh painter and author (b. 1890)

1961- Hans Rebane -Estonian journalist and politician, 8th Minister of Foreign Affairs (Estonia)|Minister of Foreign Affairs (b. 1882)

1963- Nam Phương -Vietnamese wife of Emperor Bảo Đại (b. 1914)

1965- W. Somerset Maugham -French-English author and playwright (b. 1874)

1968- Futabayama Sadaji -Japanese sumo wrestler, the 35th Makuuchi#Yokozuna|Yokozuna (b. 1912)

1968- Muhammad Suheimat -Jordanian general and politician (b. 1916)

1976- Réal Caouette -Canadian journalist and politician (b. 1917)

1977- Risto Jarva -Finnish director, producer, and screenwriter (b. 1934)

1980- Colonel Sanders -American businessman, founded KFC (b. 1890)

1980- Hellmuth Walter -German-American engineer (b. 1900)

1982- Colin Chapman -English engineer and businessman, founded Lotus Cars (b. 1928)

1983- Debs Garms -American baseball player (b. 1907)

1984- Karl Deichgräber -German classical philologist (b. 1903)

1985- Thomas Bilotti -American mobster (b. 1940)

1985- Paul Castellano -American mobster (b. 1915)

1988- Sylvester (singer)|Sylvester -American singer-songwriter and producer (b. 1948)

1989- Oscar Alfredo Gálvez -Argentinian race car driver (b. 1913)

1989- Silvana Mangano -Italian actress (b. 1930)

1989- Aileen Pringle -American actress (b. 1895)

1989- Lee Van Cleef -American actor and singer (b. 1925)

1990- Douglas Campbell (aviator)|Douglas Campbell -American lieutenant and pilot (b. 1896)

1991- Eszter Tamási -Hungarian actress and journalist (b. 1938)

1993- Charizma -American rapper (b. 1973)

1993- Moses Gunn -American actor (b. 1929)

1993- Kakuei Tanaka -Japanese politician, 64th Prime Minister of Japan (b. 1918)

1995- Johnny Moss -American poker player (b. 1907)

1995- Mariele Ventre -Italian singer and director (b. 1939)

1996- Quentin Bell -English historian and author (b. 1910)

1997- Lillian Disney -American illustrator (b. 1899)

1997- Nicolette Larson -American singer (b. 1952)

1998- William Gaddis -American author (b. 1922)

2001- Stuart Adamson -English-Scottish singer-songwriter and guitarist (The Skids, Big Country, and The Raphaels) (b. 1958)

2001- Stefan Heym -German-Israeli soldier and author (b. 1913)

2003- Robert Stanfield -Canadian economist, lawyer, and politician, 17th Premier of Nova Scotia (b. 1914)

2003- Gary Stewart (singer)|Gary Stewart -American singer-songwriter (b. 1945)

2003- Alfred Lynch -English actor (b. 1931)

2004- Ted Abernathy -American baseball player (b. 1933)

2004- Deyda Hydara -Gambian journalist, co-founded ''The Point (the Gambia)|The Point'' (b. 1946)

2005- Kenneth Bulmer -English author (b. 1921)

2005- Ed Hansen -American director and screenwriter (b. 1937)

2005- John Spencer (actor)|John Spencer -American actor (b. 1946)

2006- Don Jardine -Canadian wrestler (b. 1940)

2006- Taliep Petersen -South African singer-songwriter and director (b. 1950)

2006- Pnina Salzman -Israeli pianist (b. 1922)

2007- Dan Fogelberg -American singer-songwriter and guitarist (b. 1951)

2009- Roy E. Disney -American businessman (b. 1930)

2009- Yegor Gaidar -Russian economist and politician, Prime Minister of Russia (b. 1956)

2009- Manto Tshabalala-Msimang -South African physician and politician, 22nd Minister of Health (South Africa)|South African Minister of Health (b. 1940)

2010- Melvin E. Biddle -American soldier, Medal of Honor recipient (b. 1923)

2011- Dan Frazer -American actor (b. 1921)

2012- Axel Anderson -German-Puerto Rican actor (b. 1929)

2012- Peter Clarke (cartoonist)|Peter Clarke -English cartoonist (b. 1935)

2012- Doyle Conner -American farmer and politician (b. 1928)

2012- Febo Conti -Italian actor (b. 1926)

2012- Robert Derleth -American football player (b. 1922)

2012- Elwood V. Jensen -American biologist and academic (b. 1920)

2012- Iñaki Lejarreta -Spanish cyclist (b. 1983)

2012- Adam Ndlovu -Zimbabwean footballer (b. 1970)

2012- Nikolai Parshin -Russian footballer and manager (b. 1929)

2012- Josh Weston -American porn actor (b. 1973)

2012- Lynda Wiesmeier -American model and actress (b. 1963)

2012- Jake Adam York -American poet and academic (b. 1972)

2013- James Isbell Armstrong -American academic (b. 1919)

2013- James Flint (RAF officer)|James Flint -English commander (b. 1913)

2013- Conn McCluskey -Irish physician and activist (b. 1914)

2013- Ray Price (musician)|Ray Price -American singer-songwriter and guitarist (b. 1926)

2013- Marta Russell -American author and activist (b. 1951)

2013- Michiaki Takahashi -Japanese virologist (b. 1928)

2013- Zvi Yanai -Israeli publicist and philosopher (b. 1935)