On This Day

What Happened in January 1942

Historical Events

  • Jan 1 US & 25 other countries sign a united declaration against the Axis
  • Jan 1 28th Rose Bowl: #12 Oregon State beats #2 Duke, 20-16 (played in North Carolina due to Japanese threat)
  • Jan 1 8th Sugar Bowl: #6 Fordham beats #7 Missouri, 2-0
  • Jan 1 8th Orange Bowl: #14 Georgia beats TCU, 40-26
  • Jan 2 World War II: the 28 nations at war with Axis powers pledge to make no separate peace deals
  • Jan 2 German troops in Bardia surrender
  • Jan 2 Japanese troops occupy Manila, Philippines
  • Jan 2 The United States Navy opens a blimp base at Lakehurst, New Jersey
  • Jan 3 American-British-Dutch-Australian (ABDA) Command forms
  • Jan 4 4th NFL All Star Game, Polo Grounds, NYC: Chicago Bears beat NFL All-Stars, 35-24

Historic Event

Jan 4 British Prime Minister Winston Churchill & General Marshall fly to Florida

Hall of Fame

Jan 4 7 x NL batting champion Rogers Hornsby is 14th player selected to the Baseball Hall of Fame

  • Jan 5 55 German tanks reach North-Africa

Sports History

Jan 6 Bob Feller, enlists in Navy & reports for duty to Norfolk Virginia

  • Jan 6 Pan American Airlines becomes the first commercial airline to schedule a flight around the world ("Pacific Clipper").
  • Jan 7 WW II siege of Bataan starts
  • Jan 8 British Air Marshal Richard Peirse replaced as Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief Bomber Command

Boxing Title Fight

Jan 9 In his 20th title defence, Joe Louis KOs Buddy Baer in the 1st round of their rematch to retain his world heavyweight boxing title at New York’s Madison Square Garden

  • Jan 9 US Joint Chiefs of Staff created
  • Jan 10 Japan invades North Celebes, Dutch East Indies
  • Jan 11 -23°F (-31°C), Kingston, Rhode Island (state record)
  • Jan 11 Japan conquers Kuala Lumpur, Malaya
  • Jan 12 British troops reconquer Sollum
  • Jan 12 Dutch troops on Tarakan surrender
  • Jan 12 National War Labor Board created
  • Jan 13 Allied Conference on war trials
  • Jan 13 German U-boats begin harassing shipping on US east coast

Historic Invention

Jan 13 Henry Ford patents a method of constructing plastic auto bodies

  • Jan 13 Interallied war trial conference publishes St James Declaration
  • Jan 13 World War II: First use of aircraft ejection seat by a German test pilot in a Heinkel He 280 jet fighter
  • Jan 14 Japanese troops land at oil center Balikpapan in Borneo
  • Jan 15 Chicago Cubs drop plans to install lights at Wrigley Field because of military's need for materials; takes 35 years before lights finally installed at the venerable ballpark

Sports History

Jan 15 US President Franklin Delano Roosevelt sends his famed "Green Light Letter" to MLB Commissioner Judge Landis, encouraging baseball to continue playing during World War II

  • Jan 16 William Knudsen becomes 1st civilian appointed a general in US army
  • Jan 18 Nazis arrest Frans Goedhart & Wiardi Beckman
  • Jan 19 Japanese forces invade Burma
  • Jan 19 Titus Brandsma arrested by German occupiers
  • Jan 20 Japanese invade Burma

Wannsee Conference

Jan 20 Nazi officials hold notorious Wannsee Conference in Berlin to organize the "final solution", the extermination of Europe's Jews

  • Jan 21 Bronx magistrate rules all pinball machines illegal
  • Jan 21 Count Basie records "One O'Clock Jump"
  • Jan 22 Sietze de Groot wins 8th Dutch 11 city skate (8:44:06)
  • Jan 23 Battle of Rabaul: Japanese attack Australian air base in Rabaul, New Britain
  • Jan 23 Tank battle at Adzjedabia, Africa Korp vs British 8th army
  • Jan 24 Musical "Star & Garter" premieres in NYC

Historic Event

Jan 25 Lt General Rommels African corps reaches Msus

  • Jan 26 1st US force in Europe during WW II go ashore in Northern Ireland
  • Jan 26 Italian supreme command demands dismissal of German Field Marshal Erwin Rommel
  • Jan 27 -19°F (-27.4°C) is the coldest day in the Netherlands since 1850
  • Jan 28 Soviet troops under General Timoshenko's troops move into Ukraine
  • Jan 28 German troops occupy Benghazi Libya
  • Jan 28 WW II Navy flier Don Mason sends message "Sighted sub sank same"
  • Jan 28 Revival of George Gershwin's "Porgy & Bess" opens on The Majestic Theatre, NYC, with Anne Brown & Todd Duncan
  • Jan 29 1st broadcast of Roy Plomley's "Desert Island Discs" on BBC radio
  • Jan 29 German & Italian troops occupy Benghazi, Libya
  • Jan 29 Peru and Ecuador sign Protocol of Rio (boundary determination)
  • Jan 30 Japanese troops land on Ambon

Famous Birthdays

  • Jan 1 "Country" Joe McDonald, American rock singer and guitarist (Country Joe and the Fish - "I Feel Like I'm Fixin' To Die Rag"), born in Washington, D.C.
  • Jan 1 Gennadi Vassilyevich Sarafanov, USSR, cosmonaut (Soyuz 15)
  • Jan 1 George Couroupos, Greek contemporary classical composer, born in Athens, Greece
  • Jan 1 Martin Frost, (Rep-D-TX, 1971- )
  • Jan 1 Alassane Ouattara, Former Prime Minister of Ivory Coast
  • Jan 1 Judy Stone, Australian pop singer
  • Jan 1 Nevzat Güzelırmak, Turkish soccer defender (18 caps; Göztepe) and manager (Denizlispor; Turkey U21), born in İzmir, Turkey (d. 2020)
  • Jan 2 Hugh Shelton, 15th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
  • Jan 3 John Thaw, British actor (d. 2002)
  • Jan 3 John Marsden, Australian lawyer, gay activist (d. 2006)
  • Jan 3 László Sólyom, Hungarian lawyer (Chief Justice of the Constitutional Court of Hungary, 1990-980) and politician (President of Hungary, 2005-10), born in Pécs, Hungary
  • Jan 4 John McLaughlin, British jazz-rock fusion guitarist (Mahavishnu Orchestra), born in Doncaster, South Yorkshire, England
  • Jan 4 Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, Prime Minister of Kuwait (2011-present), born in Kuwait City, Kuwait
  • Jan 5 Dany Sava [Danielle Savalle], French actress (Moon Pilot), born in Paris, France
  • Jan 5 Charlie Rose, American TV host (CBS This Morning), born in Henderson, North Carolina
  • Jan 5 Cliff Potts, American television & film actor (Ted-Lou Grant), born in Glendale, California
  • Jan 5 Maurizio Pollini, Italian classical pianist, born in Milan, Italy
  • Jan 5 Jan Leeming, English television presenter and newsreader, born in Dartford, United Kingdom
  • Jan 5 Terenci Moix, Spanish writer, born in Barcelona, Spain (d. 2003)
  • Jan 7 Vasiliy Alekseyev, Russian weightlifter (Olympic gold 1972, 76), born in Miloslavsky District, Soviet Union (d. 2011)
  • Jan 7 Danny Williams, British pop singer, known as "Britain's Johnny Mathis" ("Moon River"; "White on White"), born in Port Elizabeth, Union of South Africa (d. 2005)
  • Jan 8 John Peterson, American drummer (Beau Brummels - "Just A Little"), born in Rudyard, Michigan (d. 2007)

Stephen Hawking

Jan 8 Stephen Hawking, English physicist (Black Holes & Baby Universes), born in Oxford, England (d. 2018)

  • Jan 8 Vyacheslav Dmitriyevich Zudov, Soviet cosmonaut (Soyuz 23), born in Bor, Russia
  • Jan 8 Junichiro Koizumi, Japanese politician (Prime Minister, 2001–06), born in Yokosuka, Japan
  • Jan 8 Yvette Mimieux, American actress (Time Machine; Where the Boys Are; Light in the Piazza), born in Los Angeles, California (d. 2022)
  • Jan 9 K. Callan, American actress (Joe's World, Martha-Lois & Clark), born in Dallas, Texas
  • Jan 9 Lee Kun-hee, Korean business magnate & chairman of Samsung Group, born in Uiryeong County, South Korea
  • Jan 10 Aleksandr Yakovlevich Petrushenko, Russian cosmonaut
  • Jan 10 Walter Hill, American film director (48 Hours, Extreme Prejudice), born in Long Beach, California
  • Jan 11 Clarence Clemons, American rock saxophonist (Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band), born in Norfolk County, Virginia (d. 2011)
  • Jan 11 Leo Cullum, American cartoonist (The New Yorker), born in Newark, New Jersey (d. 2010)
  • Jan 12 Vladimir Sergeyevich Kozelsky, Russian cosmonaut (Soyuz 24 backup), born in Aleksandrovskoye Stavropol kray, Soviet Union
  • Jan 12 Bernardine Dohrn, former leader of the Weather Underground, born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Jan 12 Michael Mayor, Swiss astrophysicist (discovered 1st exoplanet), 2019 Nobel Prize in Physics, born in Lausanne, Switzerland
  • Jan 14 Amichand Rajbansi, South African politician, born in Durban, South Africa (d. 2011)
  • Jan 14 Carol Bellamy, American politician (City Council Pres-D- 1978-85), born in NYC, New York
  • Jan 14 Ian Brayshaw, Australian cricketer & footballer, born in South Perth, Australia
  • Jan 14 Dave Campbell, American baseball player, born in Manistee, Michigan
  • Jan 15 Edward "Sonny" Bivins, American singer (Manhattans-Kiss & Say Goodbye), born in Macon, Georgia
  • Jan 16 Barbara Lynn [Ozen], American blues singer, songwriter and guitarist ("You'll Lose A Good Thing"), born in Beaumont, Texas
  • Jan 16 Billy Francis, American keyboardist (Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show - "Cover of the Rolling Stone"), born in Sacramento, California (d. 2010)
  • Jan 16 Tony P. Hall, American politician (Rep-D-OH, 1979- ), born in Dayton, Ohio
  • Jan 16 René Angélil, Canadian music executive, actor and director (Omertà, L'apparition), and husband of Céline Dion, born in Montréal, Québec (d. 2016)
  • Jan 16 James "Jimmy" Grashow, American sculptor and woodcut artist, born in Brooklyn, New York

Muhammad Ali

Jan 17 Muhammad Ali [Cassius Clay], American boxer (world heavyweight champion 1964-7 74-8), born in Louisville, Kentucky (d. 2016)

  • Jan 17 Randy Boone, American actor (Cimarron Strip, Virginian), born in Fayetteville, North Carolina
  • Jan 17 Ita Buttrose, Australian journalist & businesswoman, born in Potts Point, Australia
  • Jan 17 Ulf Hoelscher, German violinist, born in Kitzingen, Germany
  • Jan 17 Nancy Parsons, American actress, born in Saint Paul, Minnesota (d. 2001)
  • Jan 19 Michael Crawford [Michael Patrick Smith], British Broadway star (Phantom of the Opera), born in Salisbury, Wiltshire
  • Jan 19 Shelley Fabares, American actress (The Donna Reed Show; Coach), born in Santa Monica, California
  • Jan 20 William Powell, American R&B singer (O'Jays - "Love Train"), born in Canton, Ohio (d. 1977)
  • Jan 21 (Charles) Edwin Starr [Hatcher], American soul and R&B singer (War), born in Nashville, Tennessee (d. 2003)
  • Jan 21 Mac Davis, American country music singer-songwriter ("Baby, Don't Get Hooked On Me"; "In The Ghetto"; "I Believe In Music") and actor (North Dallas Forty), born in Lubbock, Texas (d, 2020) [1]
  • Jan 21 Martin Sharp, Australian cartoonist, album cover artist songwriter (Cream), and filmmaker, born in Sydney, Australia (d. 2013)
  • Jan 22 Mimis Domazos, Greek footballer
  • Jan 23 Ivan Ivanovich Bachurin, Soviet cosmonaut, born in Kharkov Oblast, Ukrainian SSR
  • Jan 23 Laurie Mayne, Australian cricketer (Australian pace bowler in 6 Tests 1965-70), born in Westonia, West Australia
  • Jan 23 Willy Bogner Jr., German fashion designer & filmmaker (On Her Majesty's Secret Service), born in Munich, Germany
  • Jan 23 Abdur Razzak, Bangladeshi actor and director (Ki Je Kori, Chandranath), born in Kolkata, British India (d. 2017)
  • Jan 23 Rildo da Costa Menezes, Brazilian soccer defender (38 caps; Santos, CEUB, New York Cosmos), born in Recife, Brazil (d. 2021)
  • Jan 23 Mike Davis, English rugby union lock (16 caps; Sherborne RFC) and coach (England 20 Tests 1979-83), born in Lichfield, England (d. 2022)
  • Jan 24 Gary Hart, American professional wrestling manager & wrestler, born in Ottawa, Kansas (d. 2008)
  • Jan 24 Olav Nilsen, Norwegian soccer striker/midfielder (62 caps; Viking FK), born in Stavanger, Norway (d. 2021)
  • Jan 25 Carl Eller, American football player, born in Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  • Jan 25 Jens Nygaard Knudsen, Danish Lego designer of the minifigure, born in Denmark (d. 2020)
  • Jan 26 Nigel Walmsley, chairman (Carlton UK Television)
  • Jan 26 William McLennan, CEO (Central Statistical Office)
  • Jan 26 Souad Hosni, Egyptian actress (d. 2001)
  • Jan 27 Petr Kotik, Czech composer, born in Prague
  • Jan 27 John Witherspoon, American actor (Friday), born in Detroit, Michigan (d. 2019)
  • Jan 27 Tasuku Honjo, Japanese immunologist (Nobel Prize for medicine 2018), born in Kyoto, Japan
  • Jan 27 Kate Wolf [Allen], American folk singer-songwriter ("Love Still Remains"; "Across the Great Divide"), born in San Francisco, California (d. 1986)
  • Jan 29 Arnaldo Tamayo-Méndez, Cuban cosmonaut, first Latin-American in space (Soyuz 38, 1980), born in Baracoa, Guantánamo, Cuba
  • Jan 29 Claudine Longet, French-American singer, actress, and former Mrs Andy Williams (1961-75), born in Paris, France
  • Jan 29 Frank Robinson Hartley, British vice-chancellor (Cranfield University)
  • Jan 29 Richard Needham, British MP ( Under-Secretary of State for Northern Ireland)
  • Jan 29 Robin Morgan, American poet, author, political theorist, academic, and former child actor (Dagmar-Mama), born in Lake Worth, Florida
  • Jan 30 Dries Holten, Dutch singer (Sandra & Andres), born in Cimahi, Indonesia
  • Jan 30 David J. Brown, English cricketer (Warwicks pace bowler, played 26X for England), born in Walsall, United Kingdom
  • Jan 30 Marty Balin [Buchwald], American singer (Jefferson Airplane/Starship), born in Cincinnati, Ohio (d. 2018)
  • Jan 31 Derek Jarman, actor and director (Angelic Conversation, Edward II)
  • Jan 31 Gerald Chanberlain, American jazz trombonist (Woody Herman's Thundering Herd), born in Refugio, Texas (d. 2007)
  • Jan 31 Daniela Bianchi, Italian actress

Famous Weddings

Ava Gardner

Jan 10 Actress Ava Gardner (19) weds actor Mickey Rooney (21) in Ballard, California


Famous Deaths

  • Jan 1 Jaroslav Ježek, Czechoslovakian composer, dies at 35
  • Jan 3 Pauline Beersmans [PLJM van Cuyck], Flemish actress, dies at 70
  • Jan 4 Léon Jessel, German light classical and operetta composer (The Parade of the Tin Soldiers; Schwarzwaldmädel (The Black Forest Girl)), dies of injuries sustained during Gestapo interrogation at 70
  • Jan 5 Yves Paringaux, French chief of staff, murdered
  • Jan 6 Emma Calvé, French soprano (b. 1858)
  • Jan 7 Henri de Baillet-Latour, Belgian aristocrat (3rd President International Olympic Committee 1925-42), dies at 63
  • Jan 8 Arvo Hannikainen, Finnish composer, dies at 44
  • Jan 8 Joseph Franklin Rutherford, American religious publisher (b. 1869)
  • Jan 12 George Francis, cricketer (WI Test fast-bowler, 23 wkts in 10), dies
  • Jan 14 Porfirio Barba-Jacob, Colombian writer (b. 1883)
  • Jan 15 Mel Sheppard, American athlete (Olympic gold 800m, 1,500m, medley relay 1908; 4x400 metre relay 1912), dies at 58
  • Jan 16 Carole Lombard [Jane Alice Peters], American actress (My Man Godfrey; To Be or Not to Be), dies in a plane crash at 33
  • Jan 16 Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught and Strathearn, Governor General of Canada (1911-16), dies at 91
  • Jan 17 Frederick Jerome Work, African American composer, dies at 61
  • Jan 17 Walther von Reichenau, German field marshal, dies at 57
  • Jan 21 Henryk Opieński, Polish violinist, conductor, choral director, composer (Zygmunt August and Barbara), and musicologist (Moniuszko), dies at 72
  • Jan 22 Reimond Tollenaere, leader Flemishch National Front, dies at 81
  • Jan 22 Walter Sickert, Danish-English painter (Free House!), dies at 81
  • Jan 22 Xiao Hong, Chinese writer (The Field of Life and Death). dies at 30
  • Jan 25 Eugène Samuel-Holeman, Belgian composer, dies at 78
  • Jan 26 Gerard Philips, Dutch industrialist and manufacturer (Philips), dies at 83
  • Jan 26 Felix Hausdorff, German mathematician (Hausdorff space), dies at 73
  • Jan 27 Kaarel Eenpalu, Estonian Prime Minister (b. 1888)
  • Jan 28 Pablo Luna, Spanish composer (De España vengo), dies at 61
  • Jan 29 Ladislao Joseph Philip Paul Zavrtal, Czech-Italian conductor and composer, dies at 92
  • Jan 29 Bion J. Arnold, American electrical engineer and inventor (railroad electrification), dies at 80
  • Jan 31 Henry Larkin, American baseball player (b. 1860)
  • Jan 31 Rolf Wenkhaus, German actor (Spoiling the Game, S.A.-Mann Brand), dies when his plane is shot down during WWII at 24