On This Day

What Happened in December 1881

Historical Events


Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 3 Henry Morton Stanley founds Leopoldville (now Kinshasa)

Journalist and Explorer Henry Morton Stanley
Journalist and Explorer
Henry Morton Stanley
  • Dec 4 The first edition of the Los Angeles Times is published
  • Dec 5 47th Congress (1881-83) convenes
  • Dec 8 Vienna's Ring Theater destroyed by gaslight fire, killing an estimated 384-1000 people

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 19 Opera "Hérodiade" by Jules Massenet is produced in Brussels

Composer Jules Massenet
Composer
Jules Massenet

Famous Birthdays

  • Dec 4 Erwin von Witzleben, German fieldmarshal (July 20th plot), born in Wrocław, Poland (d. 1944)
  • Dec 8 Padraic Colum, Irish novelist and poet (Collected Poems), born in Columcille, County Longford, Ireland (d. 1972)
  • Dec 14 Katherine MacDonald, American actress and film producer (Stranger Than Fiction, The Infidel), born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (d. 1956)
  • Dec 15 James Schneider, American actor (The Key to Yesterday, Keystone Kops), born in NYC, New York (d. 1967)
  • Dec 17 Aubrey Faulkner, cricketer (great South African all-rounder early 20th cent)
  • Dec 17 Johannes CB "Jan" Sluyters, Dutch painter
  • Dec 19 Joseph "King" Oliver, American jazz cornet player, composer, bandleader, and mentor to Louis Armstrong, born in Aben, Louisiana (d. 1938)

Person of interestBranch Rickey

Dec 20 Branch Rickey, American baseball player (St. Louis Browns), manager (St. Louis Cardinals, Brooklyn Dodgers) and sports executive, born in Stockdale, Ohio (d. 1965)

Baseball Player and Sports Executive Branch Rickey
Baseball Player and Sports Executive
Branch Rickey
  • Dec 22 Enver Pasa, Turkish politician, born in Istanbul, Turkey (d. 1922)
  • Dec 24 Bronislaw Zygmunt Szulc, Polish composer, born in Warsaw, Poland (d. 1955)
  • Dec 24 Charles Wakefield Cadman, American composer, born in Johnstown, Pennsylvania (d. 1946)
  • Dec 24 Juan Ramon Jiménez, Spanish poet (Distant Gardens, Nobel 1956), born in Moguer, Spain (d. 1958)
  • Dec 25 Joseph V McCarthy, baseball manager (NY Yankees)
  • Dec 29 Jess Willard, American boxer, born in Pottawatomie County, Kansas (d. 1968)
  • Dec 31 Colin G Fink, American chemist (electro chemistry), born in Hoboken, New Jersey
  • Dec 31 Jacob Israël de Haan, Dutch poet/writer (Pipelines, Jewish Song), born in Holland, Netherlands (d. 1924)
  • Dec 31 Max Pechstein, German "entartet" painter and graphic artist (The Bridge), born in Zwickau, Germany (d. 1955)

Famous Deaths

  • Dec 7 Julius FA Bahnsen, German philosopher (Tragic as Weltgesetz), dies at 51
  • Dec 13 August Senoa, Croatian writer (Kletva [The Curse]), dies at 43
  • Dec 17 Lewis H Morgan, US ethnologist (Iroquois-indians), dies at 62
  • Dec 18 George Edmund Street, English architect, dies at 57