On This Day

What Happened in December 1861

Historical Events

  • Dec 9 Battle of Bird Creek, Indian Terr (High Shoal, Chusto-Talasah)
  • Dec 9 American Civil War: The Joint Committee on the Conduct of the War is established by the U.S. Congress.
  • Dec 13 Battle of Alleghany Summit, West Virginia
  • Dec 19 Battle of Black Water (American Civil War)
  • Dec 20 Battle of Dranesville, VA

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 30 Associated Banks in NYC halt gold payments to government and investors, to disrupt Abraham Lincoln's US bank reform program

16th US President Abraham Lincoln
16th US President
Abraham Lincoln
  • Dec 31 22,990mm of rain falls in Cherrapunji Assam in India in 1861, a world record

Famous Birthdays

  • Dec 4 Lillian Russell [Helen Leonard], American singer and actress (Great Mogul), born in Clinton, Iowa (d. 1922)
  • Dec 5 Armando Diaz, Italian marshal and minister of War (1922-24), born in Naples, Kingdom of Italy (d. 1928)
  • Dec 8 Aristide Maillol, French painter and sculptor (Seated Woman), born in Banyuls-sur-Mer, Roussillon, France (d. 1944)
  • Dec 8 William C. Durant, American industry pioneer, founded General Motors, Frigidaire, born in Boston, Massachusetts (d. 1947)
  • Dec 8 George Méliès, French early filmmaker (A trip to the Moon), born in Paris (d. 1938)
  • Dec 15 Charles Duryea, American inventor (Duryea Motor Wagon Company, first auto built in the US), born in Canton, Illinois (d. 1938)
  • Dec 16 Antonio de La Gandara, French painter (d. 1917)
  • Dec 17 Fritz Volbach, German musicologist/conductor/composer
  • Dec 18 Lionel Monckton, British composer (Edwardian musical comedy), born in London, England (d. 1924)
  • Dec 19 Constance [Clara] Garnett, Russian-English translator, born in Brighton England
  • Dec 19 Italo Svevo, Trieste Austria, Italian novelist (La Coscienza di Zeno)
  • Dec 20 Ivana Kobilca, Slovenian painter, born in Ljubljana, Slovenia (d. 1926)
  • Dec 22 Erich Schaeder, German theologist (Theocentric Theology), born in Clausthal, Germany (d. 1936)
  • Dec 25 Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya, Indian founder of Banaras Hindu University (d. 1946)
  • Dec 26 Friedrich Engel, German mathematician (group theory)

Famous Deaths

  • Dec 14 Albert, English prince consort & husband of Queen Victoria, dies at 42

Person of interestGeorge Hamilton-Gordon

Dec 14 George Hamilton-Gordon, 4th Earl of Aberdeen, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (Peelite: 1852-55) & Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, dies at 76

British Prime Minister George Hamilton-Gordon
British Prime Minister
George Hamilton-Gordon
  • Dec 14 Heinrich August Marschner, German opera composer, dies at 66
  • Dec 15 Gualtiero Sanelli, composer, dies at 45
  • Dec 16 Karol Joseph Lipinski, Polish composer and virtuoso violinist, dies at 71
  • Dec 26 Philip St. George Cocke, American Brigadier General (Confederate Army), commits suicide at 52