On This Day

What Happened in January 1938

Historical Events

  • Jan 1 24th Rose Bowl: #2 California beats #4 Alabama, 13-0
  • Jan 1 4th Sugar Bowl: Santa Clara beats LSU, 6-0
  • Jan 1 4th Orange Bowl: Auburn beats Michigan State, 6-0
  • Jan 2 Book publisher Simon and Schuster founded

Historic DiscoveryPolio

Jan 3 March of Dimes established to fight polio

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Children with polio in a US hospital, inside an iron lung. In about 0.5% of cases, patients suffered from paralysis, sometimes resulting in the inability to breathe. More often, limbs would be paralyzed.
Children with polio in a US hospital, inside an iron lung. In about 0.5% of cases, patients suffered from paralysis, sometimes resulting in the inability to breathe. More often, limbs would be paralyzed.
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Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 6 Bronze memorial statue of Henry Hudson erected in Bronx

Explorer Henry Hudson
Henry Hudson
  • Jan 10 Eduard van Beinum becomes world's 1st conductor at Concert Hall

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 10 Jean Anouilh's "La Sauvage" premieres in Paris

Dramatist Jean Anouilh
Jean Anouilh
  • Jan 10 Paul Vincent Carroll's "White Seed" premieres in NYC

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 11 Bradman scores a second innings 113 v Qld after a ton in the 1st

Cricket Legend Donald Bradman
Cricket Legend
Donald Bradman
  • Jan 11 Frances Moulton elected 1st woman president of a US national bank
  • Jan 13 The Church of England accepts the theory of evolution
  • Jan 14 National Society for Legalization of Euthanasia forms (NY)

Music concertMusic Concert

Jan 16 1st jazz concert held at Carnegie Hall (Benny Goodman)

Clarinetist and Bandleader Benny Goodman
Clarinetist and Bandleader
Benny Goodman
  • Jan 16 LPGA Titleholders Championship Women's Golf, Augusta CC: Patty Berg retains title by a massive 14 strokes ahead of Jane Cothran
  • Jan 17 Supreme Soviet elects Michail Kalinin as presidium chairman

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 17 Joseph P. Kennedy becomes the 44th United States Ambassador to the United Kingdom

Patriarch of the Kennedy family Joseph P. Kennedy
Patriarch of the Kennedy family
Joseph P. Kennedy
  • Jan 18 Pitcher Grover Cleveland Alexander is elected to Baseball Hall of Fame
  • Jan 19 General Motors begins mass production of diesel engines
  • Jan 21 Dutch government starts obligatory unemployment insurance

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Jan 22 "Our Town", Thornton Wilder's Pulitzer-winner of small-town life in Grover's Corners, New Hampshire, premieres (NJ)

Playwright and Writer Thornton Wilder
Playwright and Writer
Thornton Wilder
  • Jan 25 Ian Hay's "Bachelor Born" premieres in NYC
  • Jan 31 Australian Championships Women's Tennis: American Dorothy Cheney wins her only Grand Slam singles title; beats Dorothy Stevenson of Australia 6-3, 6-2
  • Jan 31 Australian Championships Men's Tennis: American Don Budge wins the 1st-leg of his Grand Slam; beats John Bromwich of Australia 6-4, 6-2, 6-1

Famous Birthdays

  • Jan 1 Bill Emerson, (Rep-R-MO, 1981- )
  • Jan 1 Frank Langella, Bayonne, New Jersey, American actor (Dracula, Frost/Nixon)
  • Jan 1 Robert Jankel, British coachbuilder (d. 2005)
  • Jan 1 Fuad Masum, 7th President of Iraq (2014-present), born in Koya, Iraq
  • Jan 2 John Considine, actor (Reginald Love-Another World)
  • Jan 2 Ian Brady [Ian Duncan Stewart], British serial killer (Moors Murders), born in Glasgow (d. 2017)
  • Jan 2 Hans Herbjørnsrud, Norwegian author
  • Jan 5 Edwin Elliason, American archer (Olympic-92), born in Washington, D.C.
  • Jan 5 Jim Otto, NFL center (Oakland Raiders), born in Wausau, Wisconsin

Person of interestJuan Carlos I

Jan 5 Juan Carlos I [Juan Carlos Alfonso Víctor María de Borbón y Borbón-Dos Sicilias], King of Spain (1975-2014), born in Rome, Italy

King of Spain Juan Carlos I
King of Spain
Juan Carlos I
  • Jan 5 Leo Avery, Abbot of Quarr Abbey, born in Wakefield, United Kingdom (d. 1996)
  • Jan 5 Piet Kruiver, Dutch soccer star, born in Koog aan de Zaan, Netherlands (d. 1989)
  • Jan 5 Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o, Kenyan writer, born in Kamirithu
  • Jan 6 Adriano Celentano, Italian singer and actor, born in Greco
  • Jan 6 Prof Adrienne Clarke, Australian botanist, born in Melbourne, Australia
  • Jan 6 Mario Rodríguez Cobos (aka Silo), Argentine writer and spiritual leader, born in Mendoza, Argentina (d. 2010)
  • Jan 7 Lou Graham, American golfer (US Open 1975), born in Nashville, Tennessee
  • Jan 7 Jasperina de Jong, Dutch cabaret performer (Jan Rao en z'n Maat)
  • Jan 7 Paul Revere [Dick], American rock organ player and pianist (Paul Revere & Raiders), born in Harvard Nebraska, (d. 2014)
  • Jan 7 Roland Topor, French illustrator (d. 1997)
  • Jan 7 Rory Storm [Alan Caldwell], British rock singer (Rory Storm & the Hurricanes), born in Stoneycroft, Liverpool, England (d. 1972
  • Jan 8 Bob Eubanks, American DJ & television personality (Newlywed Game), born in Flint, Michigan
  • Jan 9 Aad Kosto, Dutch Labour Party politician who had his house blown up in a failed assassination attempt, born in Oegstgeest, Netherlands

Person of interestFrank Mahovlich

Jan 10 Frank Mahovlich, Canadian Hockey Hall of Fame left wing, politician (6-time Stanley Cup winner, born in Timmins, Ontario

NHL Legend Frank Mahovlich
NHL Legend
Frank Mahovlich

Person of interestWillie McCovey

Jan 10 Willie McCovey, American Baseball Hall of Fame 1st baseman (6 x MLB All Star; NL MVP 1969; NL home run leader 1963, 68, 69; SF Giants), born in Mobile, Alabama (d. 2018)

Baseball Hall of Fame 1st Baseman Willie McCovey
Baseball Hall of Fame 1st Baseman
Willie McCovey
  • Jan 10 Donald Knuth, American mathematician & computer scientist, born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Jan 11 Fischer S Black Jr, financial theorist
  • Jan 11 Michael Fenn, docker/socialist
  • Jan 11 Arthur Scargill, British Marxist & trade unionist (National Union of Mineworkers), born in Barnsley, United Kingdom
  • Jan 12 Lewis Fiander, Australian actor, born in Melbourne, Australia (d. 2016)
  • Jan 13 Billy Gray, American actor (Bud-Father Knows Best), born in Los Angeles, California
  • Jan 13 Paavo Johannes Heininen, composer
  • Jan 13 William B. Davis, Canadian actor
  • Jan 13 Tord Grip, Swedish football manager
  • Jan 13 Jean Cabut [Cabu], French caricaturist (Charlie Hebdo), born in Châlons-en-Champagne, France (d. 2015)
  • Jan 14 Allen Toussaint, American pianist, songwriter and producer ("Mother-In-Law"; "Working In A Coal Mine"; "Southern Nights"), born in Gert Town, Louisiana (d. 2015)
  • Jan 14 Jack Jones, American singer (Love Boat Theme), born in Los Angeles, California
  • Jan 15 Chuni Goswami, Indian soccer striker and captain (30 caps; Mohun Bagan) and cricket all-rounder (captain Bengal), born in Kishoreganj, Bangladesh (d. 2020)
  • Jan 16 Michael Pataki, American actor (Get Christie Love), born in Youngstown, Ohio
  • Jan 16 Jô Soares, Brazilian author, musician and TV personality, born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • Jan 17 John Bellairs, American sci-fi author (Chessmen of Doom)
  • Jan 17 Tabaré Vázque, Uruguayan politician and President of Uruguay (2015-present), born in Montevideo, Uruguay
  • Jan 18 Curt Flood, American baseball player (St Louis Cards), born in Houston, Teas (d. 1997)
  • Jan 19 Denny Smith, (Rep-R-OR, 1981- )
  • Jan 19 Eskil Hemberg, Swedish composer, conductor (Stockholm University Chorus, 1959-84), and artistic director (Royal Swedish Opera, 1987-96), born in Stockholm (d. 2004)
  • Jan 21 Wolfman Jack [Robert Weston Smith], American disk jockey (Midnight Special), born in Brooklyn, New York (d. 1995)
  • Jan 21 John Savident, British actor
  • Jan 22 Joe Esposito, American author and friend of Elvis, born in Chicago (d. 2016)
  • Jan 22 Altair, Brazilian footballer
  • Jan 22 Corra Dirksen, South African rugby union winger (10 caps; Northern Transvaal), born in Vereeniging, South Africa (d. 2020)
  • Jan 23 Anatoly Marchenko, Soviet dissident, born in Barabinsk, Russia (d. 1986)
  • Jan 23 Shohei Baba, Japanese professional wrestler, born in iigata Prefecture, Japan (d. 1999)
  • Jan 24 Julius Arthur Hemphill, American saxophonist, born in Fort Worth, Texas
  • Jan 24 Gyula Torok, Hungarian boxer (Oly Gold 1960), born in Kispest, Hungary (d. 2014)
  • Jan 25 Betico Croes, Arubian politician (Status Aparte), born in Aruba (d. 1986)
  • Jan 25 Etta James [Jamesetta Hawkins], American singer ("Roll With Me"; "At Last"), born in Los Angeles, California (d. 2012)
  • Jan 25 Shotaro Ishinomori, Japanese manga author, born in Tome, Japan (d. 1998)
  • Jan 25 Leiji Matsumoto, Japanese creator of anime, born in Kurume, Japan
  • Jan 26 Margaret Daly, British MEP
  • Jan 26 Bill Wurtzel, American jazz and classical guitarist (Count Basie), born in Forestburgh, New York
  • Jan 27 Timothy Elworthy, Captain of The Queen's Flight
  • Jan 28 Leonid Zhabotynsky, Ukrainian weightlifter
  • Jan 29 Bill Christian, American ice hockey player (Olympic gold 1960)
  • Jan 30 Marcel van Dam, Dutch politician/CEO (VARA Radio/TV)
  • Jan 30 Marlies van Alcmaer [Smal], Dutch actress & director (Bridge too Far)
  • Jan 30 Islam Karimov, President of Uzbekistan (1991-2016), born in Samarkand (d. 2016)
  • Jan 31 Ajip Rosidi, Indonesian poet/writer (Madjalah Sunda, Pesta)
  • Jan 31 Beatrix Wilhelmina Armgard, former Queen of the Netherlands (1980-2013), born in Soestdijk Palace, Baarn, Utrecht, Netherlands
  • Jan 31 James G Watt, Colo, US Secretary of Interior (1981-83)
  • Jan 31 Daevid Allen [Christopher David], Australian musician and performance artist (Soft Machine, Gong), born in Melbourne (d. 2015)

Famous Weddings

LoveWedding of Interest

Jan 1 Comedian Stan Laurel (47) marries 3rd wife Vera Ivanova Shuvalova

Comedian and Actor Stan Laurel
Comedian and Actor
Stan Laurel

Famous Deaths

  • Jan 3 Arthur Boon, Flemish priest/philologist, dies at 54
  • Jan 8 Johnny Gruelle, American cartoonist, creator of Raggedy Ann and Andy (b. 1880)
  • Jan 8 Christian Rohlfs, German painter and artist, dies at 88
  • Jan 10 Willem de Vreese, Flemish linguist, dies at 68
  • Jan 12 Gösta Ekman (senior), Swedish actor (b. 1890)
  • Jan 16 Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay, Indian Bengali novelist (Devdas), dies at 61
  • Jan 17 William Pickering, American astronomer (predicted Pluto), dies at 79
  • Jan 21 George Méliès, French early filmmaker (A Trip to the Moon), dies at 76
  • Jan 26 Zitkála-Šá, [aka Gertrude Bonnin] Native American (Yankton Dakota) writer, violinist, librettist (The Sun Dance Opera), educator, and political activist, dies at 61
  • Jan 28 Bernd Rosemeyer, German race car driver, dies at 28
  • Jan 28 John Sharp, cricketer (England bat 1909, also soccer intl), dies