On This Day

Famous Birthdays on March 31

  • 250 Constantius Chlorus, Roman Emperor, born in Dardania (d. 306)
  • 1360 Philippa of Lancaster, Queen of Portugal as wife of King John I (1387-1415), born in Leicester Castle, Leicester, England (d. 1415)
  • 1425 Bianca Maria Visconti, Duchess of Milan (1450-68), born in Settimo Pavese, Lombardy, Italy (d. 1468)
  • 1499 Pius IV [Gianangelo de' Medici], Italian lawyer and Pope (1559-65), born in Milan (d. 1565)
  • 1504 Guru Angad Dev, second Sikh guru, born in Matte Di Sarai, Muktsar, Panjab (d. 1552)

Person of interestHenry II

1519 Henry II, King of France (1547-59), born in Château de Saint-Germain-en-Laye near Paris (d. 1559)

King of France Henry II
King of France
Henry II
  • 1536 Ashikaga Yoshiteru, Japanese 13th shōgun of the Ashikaga shogunate (1546-65), born in Nanzen-ji Temple, Kyoto, Japan (d. 1565)
  • 1576 Louise Juliana of Nassau, Regent of Bohemia by marriage to Frederick IV, Elector Palatine, born in Delft, Netherlands (d. 1644)

Person of interestRené Descartes

1596 René Descartes, French philosopher (he thought, therefore he was), born in Descartes, Indre-et-Loire, France (d. 1650)

Philosopher René Descartes
René Descartes
  • 1621 Andrew Marvell, English poet (To His Coy Mistress), born in Winestead, England (d. 1678)
  • 1651 Karl II, Elector Palatine (d. 1685)
  • 1675 Benedict XIV [Prospero L Lambertini], Italian Pope (1740-58)
  • 1684 Francesco Durante, composer

Person of interestJohann Sebastian Bach

1685 Johann Sebastian Bach, German composer (Mattheus-Passion) [OS 21 Mar], born in Eisenach, Germany (d. 1750)

  • 1717 Florian Wrastill, composer
  • 1718 Marianne Victoria of Borbón, queen regent of Portugal (d. 1781)

  • 1723 Frederik V, King of Denmark/Norway (1746-66)
  • 1730 Étienne Bézout, French mathematician (d. 1783)
  • 1732 Franz Joseph Haydn, Austrian composer of the classical period (The Creation, Trumpet Concerto), born in Vienna, Austria (d. 1809)
  • 1747 Johann Abraham Peter Schulz, German composer (Moon has Risen)
  • 1777 Charles Cagniard de la Tour, French physicist (d. 1859)
  • 1778 Coenraad Jacob Temminck, Dutch zoologist (d. 1858)
  • 1791 Franciszek Wincenty Mirecki, composer
  • 1794 Thompson McKennan, American politician who served as the 2nd United States Secretary of the Interior (d. 1852)
  • 1809 Edward FitzGerald, England, writer (Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam)
  • 1809 Otto Jonas Lindblad, composer
  • 1809 Nikolai Gogol [Nikolay], Ukrainian-born Russian novelist, humorist, and dramatist (Dead Souls, The Inspector-General), born in Sorochintsy, Poltava Governorate, Russian Empire (d. 1852)
  • 1819 Prince Chlodwig zu Hohenlohe-Schillingsfürst, Chancellor of Germany (d. 1901)
  • 1822 Rafael Hernando, composer
  • 1831 Archibald Scott, Scottish chemist
  • 1835 John La Farge, American painter
  • 1837 Robert Ross McBurney, 1st paid secretary of the YMCA
  • 1838 Leon Dierx, French poet
  • 1839 Nikolay Przhevalsky, naturalist, explorer of east central Asia (OS)
  • 1840 John Herbert Kelly, Brigadier General (Confederate Army), (d. 1864)
  • 1840 Benjamin Baker, English civil engineer who designed the bridge over the Firth of Forth, Scotland and the London underground, born in Frome, England (d. 1907)

  • 1844 Andrew Lang, Scottish poet, novelist, literary critic, and anthropologist (Andrew Lang's Fairy Books), born in Selkirk, Scottish Borders, Scotland (d. 1912)
  • 1847 Jarolslaw Zielinski, composer
  • 1847 Yegor Ivanovich Zolotarev, Russian mathematician (d. 1878)
  • 1848 John Henry Roberts, composer
  • 1854 Dugald Clerk, inventor (2-stroke motorcycle engine)
  • 1855 Alfred E. Hunt, founder of Alcoa (d. 1899)
  • 1860 Isidor Traube, Hildesheim Hanover, German Chemist (founded capillary chemistry, research on liquids)
  • 1868 Karl Bonhoeffer, German psychiatrist/neurologist
  • 1870 Tommy Ryan, American boxer (World Welterweight, Middleweight champion), born in Redwood, NY (d. 1948)

Person of interestArthur Griffith

1871 Arthur Griffith, Irish writer and politician who founded Sinn Féin (President of Ireland 1922), born in Dublin, Ireland, United Kingdom (d. 1922)

Irish Politician and Founder of Sinn Féin Arthur Griffith
Irish Politician and Founder of Sinn Féin
Arthur Griffith
  • 1872 Sergei Pavlovich Diaghilev, Russian dance master (Imperial Ballet)
  • 1876 Borisav "Bora" Stanković, Serbian writer (d. 1927)
  • 1878 Jack Johnson, American boxer (1st African-American world heavyweight champion [1908-15]), born in Galveston, Texas (d. 1946)
  • 1884 Adriaan van Maanen, Dutch-American astronomer (d. 1946)
  • 1885 Jules Pascin [Julius Pincas], Bulgarian/American painter/cartoonist
  • 1887 Jose Maria Usandizaga, composer
  • 1890 William Lawrence Bragg, English physicist, Nobel laureate (d. 1971)
  • 1891 Erich Walter Sternberg, composer
  • 1891 Ion Pillat, Romaniams poet/senator (Umbra timpului)
  • 1891 Victor Varconi, Hungarian actor (Divine Lady, King of Kings, Big City)
  • 1891 Andy Varipapa, American ten-pin bowler (BPAA All-Star champion 1947-48), born in Carfizzi, Italy (d. 1984)
  • 1892 Stanislav Wladyslaw Maczek, Polish/British general-major/commandant
  • 1893 Clemens Krauss, conductor (Berlin State Orch-1937), born in Vienna, Austria
  • 1895 John Jay McCloy, US lawyer and banker (Secretary of War 1941-45, chairman of Chase Manhattan Bank)
  • 1895 Vardis Fisher, American author (Darkness & Deep), born in Annis, Idaho (d. 1968)
  • 1900 Henry WFA, English duke of Gloucester/earl of Ulters
  • 1901 Mule Suttles, American Baseball Hall of Fame infielder (5-time Negro Leagues All Star), born in Edgewater, Alabama (d. 1966)
  • 1905 George Treweeke, Australian Rugby League second rower (Australia 7 Tests, South Sydney), born in Grahamstown, NSW
  • 1906 Lauri Saikkola, composer
  • 1907 Eddie Quillan, American actor (Mutiny on the Bounty, Julia, Hell Town), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 1990)
  • 1908 Red Norvo, American jazz vibraphonist known as "Mr. Swing" (Congo Blues, Knockin' on Wood), born in Beardstown, Illinois (d. 1999)
  • 1909 Pieter Jongeling, Dutch author (under Piet Prins) and politician
  • 1909 Robert Brasillach, French author/nazi collaborator
  • 1911 Elisabeth Grümmer, German soprano (d. 1986)
  • 1912 Wilhelmus Berkelmans, civil servant/resistance fighter
  • 1913 Dai Rees, Scottish golfer (British Open runner-up 1953-54, 61), born in Fontegary, Glamorgan (d. 1983)
  • 1913 Etta Baker, Caldwell County North Carolina, American blues guitarist
  • 1914 Octavio Paz, Mexican writer/diplomat (Salamandra, Topoemas)
  • 1915 Eliseo Morales Pajaro, composer
  • 1915 Henry Morgan, American comedian and TV panelist (I've Got a Secret, Arena), born in NYC, New York (d. 1994)
  • 1915 Jack Perry, businessman
  • 1915 Shoichi Yokoi, Japanese military man (d. 1997)
  • 1916 John Vivyan, actor (Imitation of Life, Mr Lucky), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1916 Lucille Bliss, American voice actress (Cinderella, The Secret of NIMH), born in NYC, New York (d. 2012)
  • 1916 John H. Wood, Jr., American federal judge (d. 1979)
  • 1916 Tommy Bolt, American golfer (US Open 1958), born in Haworth, Oklahoma (d. 2008)
  • 1918 Ted Post, Dir (Peacemaker, Beneath the Planet of the Apes)
  • 1918 Marv Grissom, American baseball pitcher, coach (MLB All Star 1954, NY, SF Giants), born in Los Molinos, CA (d. 2005)
  • 1920 Marga [Sara Voeten-] Minco, Dutch writer (Bitter Herb)
  • 1920 Deborah "Debs" Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire and the Chatsworth estate, one of the Mitford sisters, born in Gloucestershire (d. 2014)
  • 1922 Patrick Magee [McGee], Northern Irish actor and director (A Clockwork Orange, Barry Lyndon), born in Armagh, Northern Ireland (d.1982)
  • 1922 Richard Kiley, American actor and singer (Kismet, Man of La Mancha, Endless Love), born in Chicago, Illinois (d. 1999)
  • 1923 Don Barksdale, American basketball forward (Olympic gold 1948, NBA All Star 1953), born in Oakland, CA (d. 1993)
  • 1923 Lawrie Miller, New Zealand cricket batsman (13 Tests), born in New Plymouth, Taranaki, New Zealand (d. 1996)
  • 1924 Leo Buscaglia, American psychologist known as "Dr Love" (Love), born in Los Angeles, California (d. 1998)

  • 1925 Jean Coutu, French Canadian actor (d. 1999)
  • 1926 John Fowles, English novelist (Collector, French Leiutenent's Woman)

Person of interestCesar Chavez

1927 Cesar Chavez, American farm labor leader (United Farm Workers), born in Yuma, Arizona (d. 1993)

Civil Rights Activist Cesar Chavez
Civil Rights Activist
Cesar Chavez
  • 1927 William Daniels, American actor (Dr Mark Craig-St Elsewhere, 1776), born in Brooklyn, New York
  • 1927 Dave Hassinger, American recording engineer and record producer, born in Los Angeles, California (d. 2007)

Person of interestGordie Howe

1928 Gordie Howe, Canadian Hockey Hall of Fame right wing (23-time NHL All Star; NHL: Detroit Red Wings; WHA: Houston Aeros), born in Floral, Saskatchewan (d. 2016)

Ice Hockey Legend Gordie Howe
Ice Hockey Legend
Gordie Howe
  • 1929 Lee Patterson, Canadian actor (Dave-Surfside Six, Another World), born in Vancouver, British Columbia (d. 2007)

Person of interestLiz Claiborne

1929 Liz Claiborne, American fashion designer, entrepreneur and founder of Liz Claiborne Inc, born in Brussels, Belgium (d. 2007)

Fashion Designer Liz Claiborne
Fashion Designer
Liz Claiborne
  • 1929 Bertram Fields, American lawyer
  • 1931 Miller Barber, American golfer (11 PGA Tour; 3 US Senior Open titles), born in Shreveport, Louisiana (d. 2013)
  • 1932 Godfrey Lawrence, South African cricket fast bowler (5 Tests, 8-53 v NZ 1961), born in Salisbury, Rhodesia
  • 1932 John Jakes, writer (Sir Scoundrel, Great Women Reporters), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1932 Nagisa Oshima, director (Town of Love & Hope), born in Kyoto, Japan (d. 2013)
  • 1933 Bob Simmons, Fulham England, stuntman (double for James Bond)
  • 1933 Shirley Jones, American actress (Partridge Family, Elmer Gantry), born in Smithton, Pennsylvania
  • 1933 Nichita Stănescu, Romanian poet (d. 1983)
  • 1934 Grigori Grigoyevich Nelyubov, Russian cosmonaut (Vostok 1 backup)
  • 1934 John D. Loudermilk, country singer and songwriter (Tobacco Road), born in Durham, North Carolina (d. 2016)
  • 1934 Wim H Sinnige, Dutch alderman of finance (social democratic)
  • 1934 Richard Chamberlain, American actor (Dr Kildare), born in Beverly Hills, California
  • 1935 Herb Alpert, bandleader/trumpeteer (Tijuana Brass)/CEO (A & M)
  • 1935 Judith Rossner, American writer (August)
  • 1936 Marge Piercy, author (Small Changes, Gone for Soldiers)
  • 1936 Dokumamushi Sandayu, Japanese actor
  • 1936 Bob Pulford, Canadian Hockey Hall of Fame left wing, coach (coach: LA Kings, Chicago Blackhawks), born in Newton Robinson, Ontario
  • 1937 Willem Duyn [Mouth], Dutch singer (Mouth & MacNeal)
  • 1938 Nathaniel Taylor, American actor (Rollo-Sanford & Sons), born in St Louis, Missouri (d. 2019)
  • 1938 Sheila Dikshit, Chief Minister of Delhi
  • 1938 Arthur B. Rubinstein, American composer
  • 1938 David Steel, Scottish politician

  • 1938 Bill Hicke, Canadian NHL right wing (3-time NHL All Star), born in Regina, Saskatchewan (d. 2005)
  • 1938 Jimmy Johnson, American Pro Football Hall of Fame cornerback (4-time Pro Bowl), born in Dallas, Texas
  • 1939 Zviad Gamsakhurdia, first President of Georgia (d. 1993)
  • 1940 Barney Frank, (Rep-D-MA, 1981- )
  • 1940 Patrick Leahy, American politician (Senator-D-Vermont, 1975- ), born in Montpelier, Vermont
  • 1942 Michael Savage [Michael A Wiener], American talk radio host and commentator, born in The Bronx, New York
  • 1942 Ulla Hoffmann, Swedish politician
  • 1943 Christopher [Ronald] Walken, American actor (The Deer Hunter, Brainstorm), born in NYC, New York
  • 1943 Roy Andersson, Swedish film director (A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence), born in Gothenburg, Sweden
  • 1944 Rod Allen [B Rodney Bainbridge] rock bassist/vocalist (Fortunes)
  • 1944 Mick Ralphs, English guitarist (Mott the Hoople, Bad Company)
  • 1944 Tomohiro Nishikado, Japanese video gamer developer (Space Invaders), born in Osaka, Japan
  • 1945 Valerie Curtin, American actress, writer, and producer
  • 1946 Aftab Gul, Pakistani cricket batsman (6 Tests @ 22.75), born in Gujar Khan, Punjab
  • 1946 Al Nichol, rock guitarist/vocalist (Turtles), born in Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  • 1946 Gabe Kaplan, American comedian and actor (Welcome Back Kotter), born in Brooklyn, New York
  • 1947 Al Goodman, rock vocalist (Ray, Goodman, Brown)
  • 1947 Caesar Gaviria Trujillo, president (Colombia, 1990-94)
  • 1947 Jon-Jon Poulos, rocker (Buckinghams), born in Chicago, Illinois

Person of interestAl Gore

1948 Al Gore, American politician and environmentalist (Vice President: 1993-2001), born in Washington, D.C.

45th Vice President of the United States Al Gore
45th Vice President of the United States
Al Gore
  • 1948 David Eisenhower, author and grandson of President Eisenhower (married Julie Nixon), born in West Point, New York
  • 1948 Rhea Perlman, American actress (Zena in Taxi, Carla in Cheers), born in Brooklyn, New York
  • 1948 Thijs van Leer, Dutch singer/flutist (Focus, Introspection)
  • 1948 Gustaaf Van Cauter, Belgian cyclist (world champion 100k team road race), born in Mechelen, Flanders
  • 1950 Alison McCartney, pathologist/Breast Cancer campaigner
  • 1950 Richard Hughes, rocker (Johnny Winter Band)
  • 1950 Ed Marinaro, American actor (Joe-Hill St Blues, Sonny-Laverne & Shirley), born in NYC, New York
  • 1952 Dermot Morgan, Irish actor and comedian (Father Ted Crilly-Father Ted), born in Dublin, Ireland (d. 1998)
  • 1952 Mike Rafter, England Rugby Union flanker (England 17 caps), born in Bristol, England
  • 1953 Greg Martin, singer (Ky Headhunters-Davy Crockett), born in Louisville, Kentucky

  • 1953 Sean Hopper, California, rock keyboardist (Huey Lewis & The News)
  • 1953 Dennis Kamakahi, Grammy Award-winning musician (d. 2014), born in Honolulu, Hawaii
  • 1953 Rene Portland, American college basketball coach (Penn State 1980-2007), born in Broomall, Pennsylvania (d. 2018)
  • 1954 Tony Brock, England, rock drummer (Isn't It Time, Every Time I Think of You)
  • 1955 Angus Young, Glascow Scotland, rock guitarist (AC/DC-Highway to Hell)
  • 1955 Robert Vance, New Zealand cricket wicket-keeper (4 Tests @ 29.57), born in Wellington, NZ
  • 1956 Bruce Sinofsky, American documentary film director (Brothers Keeper), born in Boston, Massachusetts (d. 2015)
  • 1957 Marc McClure, San Mateo California, actor (Ross-California Fever)
  • 1957 Mary Cadorette, East actress (Vicky-3's a Crowd), born in Hartford, Connecticut
  • 1957 Patrick G Forrester, Army Lt Colonel and astronaut, born in El Paso, Texas
  • 1958 Pat McGlynn, Edinburgh, rock guitarist (Bay City Rollers)
  • 1958 Tony Cox, American actor
  • 1959 Ali McMordie, Irish bassist (Stiff Little Fingers)
  • 1960 Anne Howard, actress (Nicole Love-Another World), born in San Diego, California
  • 1960 Mark Tuinei, American NFL offensive tackle (3-time Super Bowl winner, Dallas Cowboys), born in Oceanside, CA
  • 1961 Ron Brown, American athlete (Olympic gold 4 x 100m 1984), born in Los Angeles, California
  • 1962 John Taylor, American NFL wide receiver (3-time Super Bowl winner, SF 49ers), born in Philadelphia, PA
  • 1963 Paul Mercurio, Australian actor/dancer
  • 1963 Stephen Tataw, Cameroonian soccer right-back (63 caps; captain Cameroon national team FIFA World Cup 1990, 94), born in Yaoundé, Cameroon (d. 2020)
  • 1964 Dave Wyman, American NFL linebacker, broadcaster (Seattle Seahawks, Denver Broncos), born in San Diego, CA
  • 1964 David Diaz-Infante, American NFL guard, coach, broadcaster (2-time Super Bowl winner, Denver Broncos, born in San Jose, CA
  • 1964 Erik Turner, rock guitarist (Warrant-Cherry Pie), born in Omaha, Nebraska
  • 1964 Isabelle Ferrari [Isabella Fogliazza], Italian actress (Italy's Miss Teenager), born in Ponte dell'Olio, Italy
  • 1965 Patty Fendick, American tennis player (Australian Open doubles 1991), born in Sacramento, California
  • 1965 Tom Barrasso, American NHL goaltender (Calder Memorial Trophy, Vezina Trophy 1984), born in Boston, Massachusetts
  • 1965 William McNamara, American actor (Texasville, Beat, Stealing Home), born in Dallas, Texas
  • 1965 Jean-Christophe Lafaille, French mountaineer best known for his solo self-rescue on Annapurna with a broken arm, born in Gap, Hautes-Alpes (d. 2006)
  • 1966 Roger Black, English athlete (World C'ships gold 4 x 400m relay 1991, 97), born in Gosport, Hampshire,
  • 1967 Nanci Bowen, American golfer (Nabisco Dinah Shore 1995), born in Tifton, Georgia
  • 1968 Naoya Ogawa, Japanese professional wrestler

  • 1968 Brett Deubner, American violist, born in San Francisco, California
  • 1969 Steve Smith, American NBA guard (14 NBA seasons, Olympic gold 2000), born in Highfield Park, MI
  • 1969 Samantha Brown, American television host
  • 1969 Nyamko Sabuni, Swedish politician

Person of interestEwan McGregor

1971 Ewan McGregor, Scottish actor (Trainspotting, Star Wars Episodes I, II, III), born in Perth, Scotland

Person of interestPavel Bure

1971 Pavel Bure, Russian Hockey Hall of Fame right wing (Vancouver Canucks, Florida Panthers), born in Moscow, Russia

Ice Hockey Great Pavel Bure
Ice Hockey Great
Pavel Bure
  • 1972 Alejandro Amenábar, Spanish film director
  • 1972 Andrew Bowen, American actor
  • 1974 Carol Ann Plante, actress (Sara Henderson-Harry & the Hendersons)
  • 1974 Stefan Olsdal, Swedish bassist (Placebo)
  • 1974 Benjamin Eicher, Swiss film director
  • 1975 Adam Green, American film director
  • 1976 Graeme Smith, British swimmer (Olympic bronze 1,500m 1996), born in Falkirk, Scotland
  • 1976 Josh Saviano, actor (Paul Pfeiffer-Wonder Years)
  • 1977 Toshiya, Japanese musician (Dir en grey)
  • 1977 Garth Tander, Australian auto racer (Bathurst 1000: 2000, 09, 11), born in Perth, WA
  • 1978 Jérôme Rothen, French soccer winger (France 13 caps, Paris SG, Caen, Monaco), born in Châtenay-Malabry, France
  • 1978 Tony Yayo, American rapper
  • 1979 Amey Date, Indian playback singer