On This Day

Famous Deaths on January 8

  • 482 Severinus, German monastery founder/saint, dies
  • 1100 Antipope Clement III, Italian archbishop, dies at about 71
  • 1107 Edgar of Scotland (b. 1074)
  • 1198 Pope Celestine III [Giacinto Bobo], Italian pope and friend of Peter Abélard, reigned 1191-98, dies at about 91

Marco Polo

1324 Marco Polo, Venetian explorer (The Travels of Marco Polo), dies at 69

  • 1336 Giotto di Bondone, Italian Proto-Renaissance painter (Scrovegni Chapel), dies at about 71
  • 1456 St. Laurence Justinian [Lorenzo Giustiniani], Italian catholic bishop and 1st Patriarch of Venice, dies at 74
  • 1464 Thomas Ebendorfer, Austrian historian (b. 1385)
  • 1557 Albert the Warlike, Prince of Bayreuth, dies at 34
  • 1567 Jacob Vaet, Flemish composer/royal chaplain master, dies at about 37
  • 1570 Philibert de l'Orme, French royal architect (Château de Chenonceau), dies at about 55
  • 1598 Johan Georg, Elector of Brandenburg (1571-91), dies at 72

Galileo Galilei

1642 Galileo Galilei, Italian astronomer, physicist and engineer who has been called the father of science, dies at 77

  • 1651 Giovanni Battista Gagliano, composer, dies at 56
  • 1696 Michael de Ronghe, composer, dies at 75
  • 1707 John Dalrymple, 1st Earl of Stair, Scottish politician (b. 1648)
  • 1711 Philips van Almonde, Zealand lt admiral, dies at 66
  • 1713 Arcangelo Corelli, Italian composer and violinist (Concerti Grossi), dies at 59
  • 1775 John Baskerville, English printer/type designer, dies at 68
  • 1789 Jack Broughton, English bare knuckle boxer (Champion of England 1736-50; published first boxing code), dies at 85
  • 1790 John Stinstra, Dutch baptist vicar, dies at 81
  • 1794 Justus Möser, German statesman and writer, dies at 73
  • 1796 Jean-Marie Collot d'Herbois, French revolutionary and President of the National Convention, dies at 46
  • 1808 Messenger, horse that sired many great trotters, dies
  • 1811 Friedrich Nicolai, writer, dies
  • 1811 Samuel Story, Dutch rear admiral (Battle of Kamperduin), dies at 58
  • 1815 Edward Pakenham, Engl general (Battle of New Orleans), dies in battle
  • 1819 Christian Gottlob Saupe, composer, dies at 55

Eli Whitney

1825 Eli Whitney, American inventor (Cotton Gin), dies of prostate cancer at 59

  • 1831 Franz Krommer, Czech composer, dies at 71
  • 1842 Viscount Pierre Cambronne, French General during the wars of the Revolution and the Napoleonic Era, dies at 71
  • 1854 William Carr Beresford, 1st Viscount Beresford, British general and politician, dies at 85
  • 1858 Friedrich Karl Kuhmstedt, composer, dies at 48
  • 1859 Antoine GB Schayes, Belgian historian/archaeologist, dies at 50
  • 1864 Victor Dourlen, French composer, dies at 83
  • 1865 Aimé, duc de Clermont-Tonnerre, French general and statesman, dies at 85
  • 1874 Charles-Étienne Brasseur de Bourbourg, French writer and historian, dies at 59

Emperor Norton

1880 Emperor Norton [Joshua Abraham Norton], British born self proclaimed "Norton I, Emperor of the United States", dies at 60

  • 1891 Fredrik Pacius, composer, dies at 81
  • 1892 John Heykamp, old-catholic archbishop of Utrecht, dies at 67
  • 1894 Pierre-Joseph van Beneden, paleont (life of tapeworms), dies at 84
  • 1896 William Rainey Marshall, Governor of Minnesota (b. 1825)
  • 1896 Paul Verlaine, French poet (b. 1844)
  • 1900 Billy Bates, English cricketer (656 runs & 50 wkts in 15 Tests for Eng), dies at 44
  • 1901 John Barry, Irish recipient of the Victoria Cross, dies during the Second Boer War at 27
  • 1907 Theodoor Verstraete, Flemish painter/etcher, dies at 57
  • 1916 Ada Rehan, Irish-American stage actress and comedian (Daly's Fifth Avenue Theatre), dies from arteriosclerosis and cancer at 58
  • 1916 Rembrandt Bugatti, Italian sculptor (b. 1884)
  • 1918 Ellis H. Roberts, American politician (b. 1827)
  • 1919 Peter Altenberg, writer, dies at 59
  • 1921 Luis Villalba Munoz, composer, dies at 48
  • 1922 Charles R Young, colonel, dies at 58, in Lagos Nigeria
  • 1926 Emile Paladilhe, composer, dies at 81
  • 1928 Dumitru Kiriac-Georgescu, composer, dies at 61
  • 1932 Eurosia Fabris, Italian Catholic (model of holiness in the daily life of a Catholic family), dies at 65
  • 1934 Alexandre Stavisky, French swindler, dies
  • 1934 Andrei Bely [Boris Nikolaevich Bugaev], Russian writer (Petersburg), dies at 53
  • 1937 John Felix August Korling, composer, dies at 72
  • 1938 Johnny Gruelle, American cartoonist, creator of Raggedy Ann and Andy (b. 1880)
  • 1938 Christian Rohlfs, German painter and artist, dies at 88

Robert Baden-Powell

1941 Robert Baden-Powell, British founder of the Boy Scout movement, dies at 83

  • 1942 Arvo Hannikainen, Finnish composer, dies at 44
  • 1942 Joseph Franklin Rutherford, American religious publisher (b. 1869)
  • 1943 Richard Hillary, Australian Spitfire pilot and author (The Last Enemy), dies in a crash during a night training at 23
  • 1943 Albert Goldthorpe, English rugby league five eighth (RL pioneer; Hunslet 713 games), dies at 71
  • 1944 William Kissam Vanderbilt II, member of the Vanderbilt family (b. 1878)
  • 1945 Jac[obus] P. Thijsse, Dutch biologist and educator (Omgang met planten), dies at 79
  • 1945 Karl Krafft, Swiss astrologer who was manipulated by the Nazi regime (b. 1900)
  • 1947 Tadeusz Kutrzeba, Polish general during the Second Polish Republic, dies at 61
  • 1948 Kurt Schwitters, German-British dada-artist and poet (collages), dies at 60
  • 1948 Richard Tauber [Denemy], Austrian-British operatic tenor and film actor, dies of lung cancer at 56
  • 1950 George Rowe, cricketer (15 wckts in 4 Tests for S Af 1895-1902), dies
  • 1950 Joseph A Schumpeter, Aus/US economist/Minister of Finance, dies at 66
  • 1950 Joseph Issac Shneerson, Jewish Lubavitch Chabal leader, dies
  • 1951 Samuel D. Riddle, American thoroughbred owner (Man 'o War, War Admiral), dies at 89
  • 1952 Antonia Maury, discoverer (supergiant, giant & dwarf stars), dies
  • 1952 Joseph Arendt, Belgian worker's union leader, dies at 66
  • 1953 Heinrich Kaspar Schmid, German composer, dies at 78
  • 1953 Admiral Sir Hugh Binney, British naval commander and Governor of Tasmania (b. 1883)
  • 1956 Jim Elliot, American Christian missionary, dies at 28
  • 1958 Paul Pilgrim, American athlete (Olympic gold 1904, 06), dies at 74
  • 1958 Mary Colter, American architect and designer (Fred Harvey Company, Santa Fe Railroad), dies at 88
  • 1961 Lynwood Thomas "Schoolboy" Rowe, American baseball pitcher (Detroit Tigers), dies at 50
  • 1963 Stark Young, American writer (So Red the Rose), dies at 81
  • 1963 Kay [Katherine Linn] Sage, American artist and poet commits suicide aged 64
  • 1964 Arnoldus JC Krafft, theologist (Atlas of Netherlands Antilles), dies at 71
  • 1964 Julius Raab, Austrian Chancellor (1953-61), dies at 72
  • 1965 Aloÿs-Henri-Gérard Fornerod, Swiss composer, dies at 74
  • 1965 Albert Asher, New Zealand dual-code rugby union and rugby league winger (RU 11 caps; RL Australasia 2 Tests, NZ 1), dies at 85
  • 1967 Zbigniew Cybulski, Polish actor (Ashes and Diamonds), dies at 39
  • 1969 Albert Hill, British athlete (b. 1889)
  • 1970 Georges Guibourg, French performer (b. 1891)
  • 1971 Adriano Lualdi, composer, dies at 85

Kenneth Patchen

1972 Kenneth Patchen, American writer (See You in the Morning), dies at 60

  • 1972 Wesley Ruggles, American actor, producer and director (I'm No Angel, Arizona, Too Many Husbands), dies at 82
  • 1975 Anthony Warde, American actor (Dangers of the Canadian Mounted, Buck Rogers, Black Widow), dies at 66
  • 1975 John Dierkes, American actor (Shane, Daughter of Dr Jekyll, Hanging Tree), dies from emphysema at 69
  • 1975 John Gregson, British actor (Gideon CID, The Longest Day, Shirley's World), dies from a heart attack at 55
  • 1975 Louis J H C A de Bourbon, Dutch writer/poet (Gypsy Blood), dies at 66
  • 1975 Richard Tucker [Reuben Ticker], American tenor (La Gioconda), dies at 61

Zhou Enlai

1976 Zhou Enlai, Premier of the People's Republic of China, dies of bladder cancer at 77

  • 1976 Robert Forgan, British fascist (b. 1891)
  • 1978 Walter Keirnan, TV panelist (I've Got a Secret), dies at 75
  • 1979 Sara Carter, American country musician, songwriter and vocalist (Carter Family), dies at 81
  • 1980 Oscar Ewing, US government official (Everybody's Business), dies at 90
  • 1980 John Mauchly, American physicist (b. 1907)
  • 1981 Matthew Beard, entertainer, dies
  • 1981 Woody Chamblis, actor (Mr Lathrop-Gunsmoke), dies at 66
  • 1982 Grégoire Aslan, American actor (The Return of the Pink Panther, King of Kings), dies of a heart attack at 73
  • 1982 Reta Shaw, American actress (Ghost & Mrs Muir, Mary Poppins, Picnic), dies of emphysema at 69
  • 1983 Gale Page, actress (4 Daughters, Knute Rockney), dies of cancer at 72
  • 1983 Lois Wilson, actress (Alice-Aldrich Family), dies at 88
  • 1983 Tom McCall, Governor of Oregon (b. 1913)
  • 1983 Gerhard Barkhorn, German fighter pilot (b. 1919)
  • 1983 Ron Frazer, Australian actor (b. 1924)
  • 1986 Yaroslav Seifert, Czech poet (Nobel 1984), dies at 84
  • 1986 Pierre Fournier, French cellist (b. 1906)
  • 1986 Mansel Treharne Thomas, Welsh composer, dies at 76
  • 1987 Peter Adams [James H Adams II], American actor (Zorro, Kraft Mystery Theater, Alternative), dies of cancer at 69
  • 1987 Nana Joshi [Padmanabh Govind Joshi], Indian cricket wicket-keeper (Indian National Team during 1950's), dies at 60
  • 1988 Frank Pace Jr, US Secretary of Army (1950-53), dies at 76
  • 1989 Johnny Jordaan [Johannes van Musscher], Dutch pop and levenslied singer, dies at 64
  • 1989 Kenneth McMillan, American actor (Malone, Concrete Beat), dies of liver disease at 56
  • 1990 Terry-Thomas [Thomas Terry Hoar-Stevens], English comedian and actor (I'm All Right Jack, Private's Progress), dies of Parkinson's disease at 78
  • 1991 Steve Clark, English rock guitarist (Def Leppard), dies at 30
  • 1992 Abderrahim Bouabid, Moroccan politician (Socialist Union of Popular Forces) and an opponent of French Imperialism and King Hassan II, dies at 69
  • 1992 Johnny Meijer, Dutch accordionist known as the King of Accordions (Body & Soul), dies at 79
  • 1993 Asif Nawaz, Pakistani general, dies
  • 1993 Hakija Turajlic, Bosnian vice-premier, murdered
  • 1993 Theo Bruins, Dutch concert pianist and composer (Sei Studi; Syncope), dies at 63
  • 1994 Edward Duke, actor (Decadence, Silver Bears), dies of cancer at 40
  • 1994 Harvey Haddix, American baseball pitcher (12 perfect inning game), dies at 68
  • 1994 Jay Blackton, US conductor/arranger (Oklahoma!), dies at 84
  • 1994 Lady Caithness, wife of British undersecretary, commits suicide
  • 1994 Pat Buttram, actor (Haney-Green Acres), dies of kidney failure at 78
  • 1994 Sri Chandrashekhara Saraswathi, guru of Kanchi, dies at 99
  • 1995 Carlos Monzon [El Macho], Argentine medium weight boxing champ (1970-77), dies at 52
  • 1995 Joyce McCartan, Irish peace campaigner, dies at 68
  • 1996 Kurt Schmucker, member (Union of Christian Democrats), dies
  • 1996 William Mac Lance "Tiny" McCloud, musician/songwriter, dies at 52
  • 1996 Howard Taubman, American music and theater critic, dies at 88
  • 1997 Carole Carr [Carless], British singer and actress (Down Among the Z Men), dies of cancer at 68
  • 1997 Jesse White, American actor (Bedtime for Bonzo, Maytag repairman, Million Dollar Mermaid), dies at 77
  • 1997 Melvin Calvin, scientist, dies at 85
  • 1997 Phyllis Hartnoll, writer/editor, dies at 90
  • 1997 George Handy [Hendleman], American bebop jazz arranger, pianist and composer Handyland, U.S.A.), dies at 76
  • 1998 Michael Tippett, English composer/conductor (Child of our Time) dies at 93
  • 1998 Walter Diemer, inventor (bubble gum 1928), dies of heart failure at 93
  • 2000 Fritz Thiedemann, German equestrianist (b. 1918)
  • 2002 Alexander Prochorow, Nobel Prize in Physics laureate (b. 1916)
  • 2002 Dave Thomas, American businessman who founded Wendy's Restaurants, dies at 69
  • 2003 Ron Goodwin, British composer and conductor (b. 1925)
  • 2004 John A. Gambling, American radio talk-show host (b. 1930)
  • 2005 Campbell McComas, Australian impersonator and broadcaster, dies at 52
  • 2005 Warren Spears, American choreographer and dancer
  • 2005 Michel Thomas, Polish linguist (b. 1914)
  • 2006 Tony Banks, British politician (Labour), dies after a stroke at 63
  • 2006 Otis Clay, American gospel, soul, and R&B-singer ("That's How It Is (When You're In Love)"), dies at 73
  • 2007 Jane Bolin, first African American female judge, dies at 98
  • 2007 Yvonne De Carlo [Middleton], Canadian-American actress (10 Commandments; The Munsters-Lily), dies of heart failure at 84
  • 2007 Francis Cockfield, British politician (b. 1916)
  • 2007 David Ervine, Northern Irish politician (b. 1953)
  • 2007 Iwao Takamoto, American animator (b. 1925)
  • 2008 George Moore, Australian champion jockey (b. 1923)
  • 2008 Clyde Otis, American songwriter and music producer (b. c. 1924)
  • 2009 Richard John Neuhaus, Canadian-American Christian writer and editor (b. 1936)
  • 2009 Don Galloway, American actor (Arrest & Trial, Ironside), dies at 71
  • 2010 Monica Maughan, Australian actor (b. 1933)
  • 2010 Tony Halme, Finnish boxer and politician (b. 1963)
  • 2011 Thorbjørn Svenssen, Norwegian footballer (b. 1924)
  • 2011 John Roll, United States Federal Judge (b.1947)
  • 2011 Vang Pao, charismatic Laotian general who commanded a secret army of his mountain people in a long, losing campaign against Communist insurgents, dies at 81
  • 2011 Hans Ulrich Engelmann, German composer (Ophelia), dies at 79
  • 2012 Alexis Weissenberg, Bulgarian born pianist (Levintritt Prize, 1948), and composer, dies at 82
  • 2013 Kenojuak Ashevak, Canadian Inuit artist, dies from lung cancer at 85
  • 2013 Jeanne Manford, American gay rights activist, dies at 92
  • 2015 Andraé Crouch, American gospel singer (The Color Purple, The Lion King), dies at 72
  • 2015 Richard Meade, British equestrian (3 x Olympic gold eventing 1968, 72; World C'ship gold team 1970, 82), dies from cancer at 76
  • 2015 Curtis Lee, American singer (Pretty Little Angel Eyes), dies at 75
  • 2015 Virginia "Patsy" Garrett, American singer and actress (Nanny & the Professor, Fred Waring's Pleasure Time), dies at 93
  • 2016 Maria Teresa de Filippis, Italian racing car driver (first woman to complete in Formula One), dies at 89
  • 2017 Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, 4th President of Iran (1989-97) and de facto commander-in-chief of the Iranian military during the Iran-Iraq War, dies of a heart attack at 82
  • 2017 Roy Innis, American activist, leader of the Congress of Racial Equality, dies at 82
  • 2017 Peter Sarstedt, British pop-folk singer-songwriter and guitarist ("Where Do You Go To (My Lovely?"; "I Am A Cathedral"), dies at 75
  • 2017 Buddy Bregman, American orchestra leader and arranger (Eddie Fisher Show; Ella Fitzgerald's Cole Porter Songbook), dies of Alzheimer's disease complications at 86 [1]
  • 2018 Donnelly Rhodes, Canadian actor (Da Vinci's Inquest, Danger Bay), dies of cancer at 80
  • 2018 Denise LaSalle [Ora Denise Allen], American blues and R&B singer recognized as the "Queen of the Blues" (Trapped by a Thing Called Love), dies from complications from surgery at 78
  • 2019 Patricia McBride Lousada, American ballerina (NYC Ballet Co) and cookbook author, dies at 89
  • 2020 Peter T. Kirstein, British computer scientist 'European father of the internet' (Internet Protocol), dies at 86
  • 2020 Edd Byrnes, American actor (77 Sunset Strip, Jack the Ripper), dies at 87
  • 2021 Shirley Wilson, American football coach (Elon University 1967-76; Duke University 1979-82; 88–61–3), dies at 95
  • 2021 [William Edwin] Ed Bruce, American country singer ("Mammas Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys"), dies at 81
January 8 Highlights