On This Day

Famous Deaths on March 26

  • 304 Saint Emmanuel, Christian martyr killed under Diocletian
  • 809 Liudger, missionary/1st bishop of Munster/saint, dies at about 66
  • 983 'Adud al-Dawlah, Iranian ruler of the Buyid dynasty (949-83), dies at 46
  • 1130 King Sigurd I of Norway (b. ca. 1090)
  • 1212 Sancho I, King of Portugal (1185-1212), dies at 58
  • 1258 Floris, the Guardian, count-regent of Holland, dies
  • 1350 Alfonso XI, King of Castile & Leon, dies
  • 1517 Heinrich Isaac, Flemish composer
  • 1535 Georg Tannstetter, Austrian scientist (b. 1482)
  • 1546 Thomas Elyot, English diplomat, dies at about 56
  • 1566 Antonio de Cabezon, Spanish composer, dies
  • 1638 Palamedes "Stevens" Palamedesz, painter, dies at about 30

John Winthrop

1649 John Winthrop, Puritan & 1st Governor of Massachusetts Bay Colony, dies at 61

  • 1657 Jacob van Eyck, Dutch blind flautist and carillonneur, dies at 69
  • 1679 Johannes Schefferus, Alsatian-born humanist (b. 1621)
  • 1697 Godfrey McCulloch, Scottish politician and murderer (executed) (b. 1640)
  • 1713 Paul Esterhazy, Hungarian prince, composer and patron, dies at 77
  • 1726 John Vanbrugh, Dutch English playwright (Provoked Wife), dies at 62
  • 1736 Georg Balthasar Schott, German composer, dies at 49
  • 1772 Charles Pinot Duclos, French writer (b. 1704)
  • 1776 Samuel Ward, American politician (31st and 33rd Governor of the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations), dies at 50
  • 1780 Charles I, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg, dies at 66
  • 1793 John Mudge, English physician (telescope mirrors) (b. 1721)

James Hutton

1797 James Hutton, Scottish geologist 'father of modern geology' dies at 70

  • 1809 Gabriele Mario Piozzi, Italian tenor and composer, dies at 68
  • 1814 Joseph-Ignace Guillotin, French physician and freemason who proposed and became the namesake of the guillotine, dies of natural causes at 75
  • 1820 Jean-Etienne Despreaux, French ballet dancer and composer, dies at 71

Ludwig van Beethoven

1827 Ludwig van Beethoven, German composer (5th Symphony, Ode to Joy), dies of liver disease at 56

  • 1831 Richard Allen, 1st African American ordained by Methodist-Episcopal church, dies at 71
  • 1837 Joseph Lincke, German cellist and composer, dies at 53
  • 1848 Steen Steensen Blicher, Danish poet and short-story writer (E Binddstouw), dies at 65
  • 1850 Samuel Turell Armstrong, American politician and acting Governor of Massachusetts (1833- 36), dies at 65
  • 1857 Wei Yuan, Chinese scholar and geographer of Qing Dynasty, dies at 62
  • 1858 John Addison Thomas, American soldier and US Assistant Secretary of State, dies at 47
  • 1865 Thomas Hancock, pioneer of rubber industry (Stoke Newington), dies
  • 1880 Mariano Soriano Fuertes y Piqueras, Spanish composer, dies at 62
  • 1881 Roman Sanguszko, Polish aristocrat and general, dies at 80
  • 1888 Barghash bin Said, second Sultan of Zanzibar (b. 1837)
  • 1892 Anton Wallerstein, German composer, dies at 78

Walt Whitman

1892 Walt Whitman, American poet (Leaves of Grass) and volunteer nurse during the Civil War, dies of pneumonia at 72

  • 1894 Alfred H. Colquitt, American lawyer and Brigadier General (Confederate Army), dies at 69
  • 1900 Isaac Mayer Wise, American rabbi and founder (American Hebrew Congregations), dies at 80

Cecil Rhodes

1902 Cecil Rhodes, British businessman, diamond merchant and imperialist politician who was Prime Minister of the Cape Colony (1890-96), dies of heart failure at 48

  • 1905 Maurice Barrymore [Herbert Blythe], Indian-born British actor and patriarch of the Barrymore family, dies from syphilis at 55
  • 1909 Nikolai Arkas, Ukrainian composer, dies at 56
  • 1910 Auguste Charlois, French astronomer (b. 1864)
  • 1910 An Jung-geun, Korean independence activist and assassin of Japanese Prime Minister Ito Hirobumi, executed by Japanese authorities at 30
  • 1918 Caesar A. Cui, Lithuanian fort builder and composer, dies at 83
  • 1920 William Chester Minor, American surgeon and contributor to the Oxford English Dictionary (b. 1834)

Sarah Bernhardt

1923 Sarah Bernhardt, French actress (Camille, Queen Elizabeth), dies of uremia at 78

  • 1924 Augusto (de Oliveira) Machado, Portuguese composer (Lauriane; Camões es os Luziadas), dies at 78

Georges Vezina

1926 Georges Vezina, NHL Hall of Fame goalie (Canadiens), dies from TB at 39

  • 1926 Konstantin Fehrenbach, German reichs chancellor (1920-21), dies at 74
  • 1929 Katharine Lee Bates, American poet (b. 1859)
  • 1932 Jean Cartan, French composer, dies at 25
  • 1933 Eddie Lang [Salvatore Massaro], American jazz guitarist known as the "father of jazz guitar", dies at 30
  • 1934 Grete Gulbransson, Austrian writer and poet (Geliebte Schatten), dies at 51
  • 1937 Albert Relf, English cricketer (13 Tests for England 1903-14), commits suicide at 52
  • 1940 Spyridon Louis, Greek distance runner (winner first modern Olympics marathon 1896), dies at 67
  • 1942 Jimmy Burke, American MLB third baseman (Pittsburgh Pirates), coach (World Series 1932, NY Yankees) and manager (St. Louis Cardinals), dies at 67
  • 1943 Ben Lindsey, American judge and social reformer, dies at 73
  • 1945 Isaack Stouten, resistance fighter, shot to death at 29
  • 1945 Boris Shaposhnikov, Russian military commander, dies at 62
  • 1948 Helen Ernst, German poster artist/resistance fighter, dies at about 43
  • 1951 James F. Hinkle, American politician, sixth Governor of New Mexico, dies at 86
  • 1956 Thomas de Hartmann, Russian composer, dies at 70
  • 1957 Édouard Herriot, French politician (served 3 times as Prime Minister of France), dies at 84
  • 1958 Phil Mead, English cricketer (strong batsman for England pre- & post-WWI), dies at 71
  • 1959 Raymond Chandler, British-American mystery writer novelist and screenwriter (Farewell My Lovely; The Long Goodbye; The Big Sleep), dies at 71
  • 1960 Ian Keith, American actor (Abraham Lincoln, Queen Christina, Cleopatra, 3 Musketeers), dies from a heart attack at 61
  • 1962 Marjorie Colton, American inventor of wax paper, dies at 64
  • 1962 Augusta Savage, African-American sculptor and equal rights advocate dies at 72
  • 1964 Hedwig Kohn, Prussian-born Jewish physics pioneer, dies at 77
  • 1969 Günther Weisenborn, German writer and German Resistance fighter, dies at 66
  • 1970 Fritz Ascher, German Expressionist artist, dies at 76
  • 1973 George Sisler, American MLB Hall of Fame 1st baseman, 1915-30; MLB record 257 hits in 1920, 2x AL batting champ, 4x AL Stolen Base leader (St. Louis Browns, and 2 other teams), dies at 80

Noël Coward

1973 Noël Coward, English playwright (Hay Fever; Private Lives), director (In Which We Serve -1942 Academy Award), actor and singer, dies of heart failure at 73

  • 1973 Safford Cape, American-Belgian conductor, composer and music historian, dies at 67
  • 1973 Johnny Drake, American NFL football running back, 1937-41 (Cleveland Rams), dies at 56
  • 1973 Don Messer, Canadian folk fiddler, and television host (Jubilee, 1959-73), dies of a heart attack at 63
  • 1976 Josef Albers, German artist, dies at 88
  • 1976 Lin Yutang, Chinese writer, dies at 80
  • 1978 Alix Combelle, French swing saxophonist, clarinetist, and bandleader (Quintette du Hot Club de France), dies at 65
  • 1979 Jean Stafford, American writer (Pulitzer Prize 1970-The Collected Stories of Jean Stafford), dies at 63
  • 1980 Jon-Jon Poulos, American drummer (Buckinghams), dies at 32
  • 1981 Cyril Dean Darlington, English biologist and geneticist who discovered the mechanics of chromosomal crossover and its role in inheritance and evolution, dies at 77
  • 1981 Tim Wall, Australian cricketer (SA v NSW 1933 is Sheffield Shield record), dies at 76
  • 1982 Agathe Henriette de Beaufort, Dutch writer (Dolly of Arnhem), dies at 91
  • 1983 Anthony Blunt, British art historian and spy for USSR, dies at 75
  • 1984 Ahmed Sékou Touré, first President of Guinea (1958-84), dies of a heart attack at 62
  • 1986 Bartlett Robinson, American actor (Wendy & Me, Mona McCluskey), dies at 73
  • 1987 Walter Abel, American actor (Fury; Suspicion; Dream Girl), dies at 88
  • 1987 Eugen Jochum, German conductor (Hamburg Orchestra), dies at 84
  • 1988 Musa Kaleem [Orlando Wright], American jazz saxophonist, dies at 67
  • 1990 International Chrysis, American Transvestite actor (Q&A), dies of cancer at 38
  • 1990 Halston, American fashion designer (1972 Hall of Fame), dies of AIDs at 68
  • 1991 Frans Dohmen, union leader (Neth Catholic Mine Workers), dies at 81
  • 1992 Barbara Frum, Canadian journalist (b. 1937)
  • 1993 Luis Falco, US choreographer (Fame, Angel Heart), dies at 50
  • 1993 Roy Riegels, University of California football player who ran wrong way, dies at 84
  • 1994 Constantine Koukouchkine, Russian diplomat, murdered in Algeria at 41
  • 1994 Jan Bor, Dutch violinist/painter, dies at 83
  • 1995 Eazy-E [Eric Lynn Wright], American rapper (N.W.A.), dies from AIDS-related illness at 30
  • 1995 Vladimir Maksimov, Russian writer and dissident, dies at 64
  • 1996 [Elizabeth] Cissie Charlton, English football matriarch, dies at 83
  • 1996 David Packard, American electronic engineer and businessman, dies at 83
  • 1996 Edmund Muskie, American politician (Sen-D-Me) and US Secretary of State (1980-81), dies at 81
  • 1996 Tom Wakefield, British writer, dies at 60
  • 1997 Marshall Applewhite, American cult leader (Heaven's Gate), dies leading a mass suicide at 65
  • 2000 Alex Comfort, English author (The Joy of Sex), dies at 80
  • 2002 (Randolpho) Randy Castillo, American rock and mariachi drummer (Ozzy Osbourne; Mötley Crüe; Azul), dies of cancer at 51
  • 2003 Daniel Patrick Moynihan, American politician and Senator (NY), dies at 72
  • 2004 Jan Berry, American musician (Jan and Dean) dies after a stroke at 62
  • 2004 Jan Sterling [Jane Adriance], American actress (Ace in the Hole, The High and the Mighty), dies of diabetes and a stroke at 82
  • 2005 Gérard Filion, Quebec businessman and journalist (b. 1909)
  • 2005 Paul Hester, Australian drummer (Split Enz and Crowded House) (b. 1959)
  • 2005 Marius Russo, American baseball player (New York Yankees), dies at 90
  • 2006 Anil Biswas, Indian politician (b. 1944)
  • 2006 Paul Dana, American race car driver (b. 1975)
  • 2006 Nikki Sudden, British singer-songwriter (b. 1956)
  • 2008 Heath Benedict, American Football Player (b. 1983)
  • 2008 Robert Fagles, American translator and professor (b. 1933)
  • 2008 Wally Phillips, American radio personality (b. 1925)
  • 2008 Manuel Marulanda Velez aka Tirofijo, founder and lifelong leader of Colombian rebel group FARC-EP, dies of a heart attack at 77

Geraldine Ferraro

2011 Geraldine Ferraro, American politician (US Representative from New York (D), 1979-85), and the 1st female vice-presidential nominee (1984), dies of nulitiple myelomaat 75

  • 2011 Roger Abbott, Canadian comedian (Air Farce Live) (b. 1946)
  • 2011 Diana Wynne Jones, British fantasy writer (b. 1934)
  • 2011 Paul Baran, internet pioneer who helped create the technical underpinnings of Arpanet, dies at 84
  • 2013 Tom Boerwinkle, American NBA player, dies at 67
  • 2013 Don Payne, American television and screenwriter, dies from bone cancer at 48
  • 2013 Yury Rudov, Soviet fencer, dies at 82
  • 2015 John Renbourn, British jazz and folk guitarist and songwriter (Pentangle), dies of a heart attack at 70
  • 2015 Tomas Tranströmer, Swedish poet (Nobel Prize for Literature - 2011), dies at 83
  • 2016 Jim Harrison, American poet and novelist (Legends of the Fall), dies at 78
  • 2016 David Baker, American jazz trombonist and cellist, jazz and classical composer (Reflections), and educator (Indiana University), dies at 84
  • 2017 Alain Gagnon, Canadian composer (Chansons d'Orient), and music educator (Université Laval, 1967-2008), dies at 78
  • 2017 Darlene Cates, American actress (What's Eating Gilbert Grape), dies at 69
  • 2017 Brian Oldfield, American shot-putter (credited with making rotational technique popular), dies at 71
  • 2019 Ranking Roger [Roger Charlery], British rock vocalist (The Beat, General Public), dies of cancer at 56
  • 2019 Heinz Winbeck, German composer, conductor and teacher, dies at 73
  • 2020 Jimmy Wynn, American baseball outfielder (MLB All Star 1967, 74, 75; Houston Colt 45s/Astros, LA Dodgers), dies at 78
  • 2020 Michel Hidalgo, French soccer midfielder (1 cap; Monaco) and manager (France 1976-84; UEFA Euro 1984), dies at 87
  • 2020 Curly Neal, American basketball guard (Harlem Globetrotters 1963-85), dies at 77
  • 2020 John O'Leary, Irish golfer (Irish Open 1982; Ryder Cup 1975; director European Tour 1985-2019), dies at 70
March 26 Highlights