On This Day

What Happened in December 1839

Historical Events

  • Dec 18 1st celestial photograph (of Moon) made in US by John Draper in New York City

Famous Birthdays


Person of interestGeorge Armstrong Custer

Dec 5 George Armstrong Custer, United States Army officer and cavalry commander in the American Civil War and the American Indian Wars, born in New Rumley, Ohio (d. 1876)

  • Dec 7 Redvers Buller, English general and recipient of the Victoria Cross, born in Crediton, Devon (d. 1908)

Famous Deaths

  • Dec 3 Frederik VI, king of Denmark (1808-39)/Norway (1803-14), dies at 71
  • Dec 7 Jan Matyas Nepomuk August Vitasek, composer, dies at 69
  • Dec 15 Matthijs I van Bree, Flemish court-painter, dies at 66
  • Dec 18 Charles-Henri Plantade, French composer, dies at 75

Person of interestJean-Baptiste Lamarck

Dec 18 Jean-Baptiste Lamarck, French naturalist (Lamarckian evolution), dies at 85

French Naturalist Jean-Baptiste Lamarck
French Naturalist
Jean-Baptiste Lamarck