On This Day

Birthdays in History on April 4

Person of interestCaracalla

188 Caracalla, Roman emperor (198-217), born in Lugdunum, Gaul (d. 217)

Roman Emperor Caracalla
Roman Emperor
Caracalla
  • 1492 Ambrosius Blarer, German reformer, born in Konstanz, Germany (d. 1564)
  • 1572 William Strachey, English writer ( early history of the English colonisation of North America), born in Saffron Walden, Essex (d. 1621)
  • 1593 Edward Nicholas, English statesman (Secretary of State to Charles I and Charles II), born in Winterbourne Earls, United Kingdom (d. 1669)
  • 1646 Antoine Galland, French orientalist and archaeologist, born in Rolot, France (d. 1715)
  • 1648 Grinling Gibbons, Dutch-born British sculptor and woodcarver, born in Rotterdam, Netherlands (d. 1721)
  • 1688 Joseph-Nicolas Delisle, French astronomer and cartographer, born in Paris (d. 1768)
  • 1718 Benjamin Kennicott, English churchman and Hebrew scholar, born in Totnes, Devon (d. 1783)
  • 1758 John Hoppner, English portrait painter, born in Whitechapel, London (d. 1810)
  • 1758 Pierre-Paul Prud'hon, French Romantic painter and draughtsman - allegorical paintings and portraits, born in Cluny, Saône-et-Loire (d. 1823)
  • 1772 Nachman of Breslov, Ukrainian founder of Breslov Hasidut, born in Międzybóż, Kingdom of Poland (d. 1810)
  • 1792 Thaddeus Stevens, US Radical Republican congressional leader (Rep-R), born in Danville, Vermont (d. 1868)

Person of interestDorothea Dix

1802 Dorothea Dix, American pioneering nurse and social activist who created the first American mental asylums, born in Hampden, Maine (d. 1887)

Nurse and Social Activist Dorothea Dix
Nurse and Social Activist
Dorothea Dix
  • 1809 Benjamin Pierce, American mathematician and astronomer (Peirce's criterion for outliers), born in Salem, Massachusetts (d. 1880)
  • 1814 John Blair Smith Todd, American politician and Brigadier General (Union Army), born in Lexington, Kentucky (d. 1872)
  • 1817 John Wilson Sprague, American Brevet Major General (Union Army), born in White Creek, New York (d. 1893)

  • 1818 Thomas Mayne Reid, Irish-American novelist (The Headless Horseman), born in Ballyroney, County Down, Ireland (d. 1883)
  • 1819 Queen Maria II of Portugal, Daughter of Emperor Pedro I of Brazil, born in Palace of São Cristóvão, Rio de Janeiro, Kingdom of Brazil (d. 1853)
  • 1820 Charles Devens Jr, American lawyer, jurist, statesman and Brevet Major General (Union Army), born in Charlestown, Boston, Massachusetts (d. 1891)
  • 1821 Linus Yale Jr., American portrait painter and inventor (Yale cylinder lock), born in Salisbury, New York (d. 1868)
  • 1823 Carl Wilhelm Siemens, German engineer and inventor (laid undersea cables), born in Gehrden, Hanover, Germany (d. 1883)
  • 1823 Robert Byington Mitchell, American Brigadier General (Union Army), born in Mansfield, Ohio (d. 1882)
  • 1826 Zénobe Gramme, Belgian electrical engineer (Gramme dynamo), born in Jehay-Bodegnée, Belgium (d. 1901)
  • 1828 Margaret Oliphant, Scottish novelist and biographer (Beleaguered City), born in Wallyford, Scotland (d. 1897)
  • 1831 Edward Cary Walthall, American Brigadier General (Confederate Army), born in Richmond, Virginia (d. 1898)
  • 1842 Edouard Lucas, French mathematician (Lucas sequences), born in Amiens, France (d. 1891)
  • 1846 Comte de Lautréamont, French writer (Les Chants de Maldoror), born in Montevideo, Uruguay (d. 1870)
  • 1846 Raoul Pictet, Swiss physicist who invented liquid nitrogen and was a pioneer of cryogenics, born in Geneva, Switzerland (d. 1929)
  • 1853 Tad Lincoln, youngest son of U.S. president Abraham Lincoln, born in Springfield, Illinois (d. 1871)
  • 1858 Remy de Gourmont, French poet, born in Bazoches-en-Houlmes, France (d. 1915)
  • 1866 George P Baker, American educator and playwright (47 Workshop), born in Providence, Rhode Island (d. 1935)
  • 1869 Mary Colter, American architect and designer (Fred Harvey Company, Santa Fe Railroad), born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (d. 1958)
  • 1870 George Albert Smith, American religious leader, 8th President of Mormon church, born in Salt Lake City, Utah (d. 1951)
  • 1876 Maurice de Vlaminck, Fauvist painter (Village in the Snow), born in Paris, France (d. 1958)
  • 1880 Georg von Trapp, Austrian WWI submarine commander and inspiration for "The Sound of Music" character, born in Zara, Kingdom of Dalmatia, Austria-Hungary (d. 1947)
  • 1881 Charles Earle Funk, American lexicographer (Funk & Wagnalls) (d. 1957)

Person of interestIsoroku Yamamoto

1884 Isoroku Yamamoto, Japanese WWII Marshall Admiral and Commander-in-Chief of the Japanese fleet who led the attack on Pearl Harbor, born in Nagaoka, Niigata (d. 1943)

WWII Admiral who Led the Attack on Pearl Harbor Isoroku Yamamoto
WWII Admiral who Led the Attack on Pearl Harbor
Isoroku Yamamoto
  • 1887 William Cumming Rose, American biochemist who discovered threonine (an amino acid), born in Greenville, South Carolina (d. 1985)
  • 1888 Zdzisław Żygulski, Sr., Polish literary historian, born in Przemyśl, Poland (d. 1975)
  • 1896 Robert Sherwood, American dramatist (Abe Lincoln in Illinois, Idiot's Delight), born in New Rochelle, New York (d. 1955)
  • 1896 Tristan Tzara [Samuel Rosenfeld] Romanian-French poet (Approximate Man), born in Moinești, Romania (d. 1963)
  • 1902 Louise Lévêque de Vilmorin, French poet and author (Lutin Sauvage), born in Verrières-le-Buisson, Essonne, Paris (d. 1969)
  • 1902 Stanley G. Weinbaum, American sci-fi author (Martian Odyssey), born in Louisville, Kentucky (d. 1935)
  • 1907 Nathan M. Pusey, American educator, 24th president of Harvard University (1953-71), born in Council Bluffs, Iowa (d. 2001)
  • 1908 Ernestine Gilbreth Carey, American author (Cheaper by the Dozen), born in NYC, New York (d. 2006)
  • 1911 Max Dupain, Australian photographer, born in Ashfield, Australia (d. 1992)
  • 1913 Jerome Weidman, American writer (Tenderloin), born in NYC, New York (d. 1998)
  • 1913 Jules Léger, Canadian diplomat and Governor General of Canada, born in Saint-Anicet, Quebec (d. 1980)
  • 1914 Gustave Camus, Belgian painter, born in Châtelet, Belgium (d. 1984)
  • 1914 John Beith, British diplomat, ambasador to Israel and Belgium (d. 2000)
  • 1914 Marguerite Duras, French novelist and playwright (Sea Wall), born in Saigon, French IndoChina (d. 1996)
  • 1915 Jan Drda, Czech writer (Nema Barikada, Mestecko Na Dlani), born in Příbram, Czech Republic (d. 1970)
  • 1915 Lars Ahlin, Swedish writer (My Death is My Own), born in Sundsvall, Sweden (d. 1997)
  • 1916 Nikola Ljubičić, President of the Presidency of Serbia (1982-84) and Communist politician, born in Karan, Užice, Kingdom of Serbia (d. 2005)
  • 1917 Joseph Ortiz, French-Algerian extremist and rebel (barricade uprising), born in Guyotville, Algeria (d. 1995)
  • 1918 George Jellicoe, Earl Jellicoe, British naval commander and member of the House of Lords (1939-2007), born in Hatfield (d. 2007)
  • 1920 Éric Rohmer [Maurice Schérer], French director, journalist and teacher (My Night at Maud's, Claire's Knee, Le rayon vert), born in Tulle, Corrèze, France (d. 2010)
  • 1921 Willem J "Wim" the Villiers, South African minister of Administration
  • 1924 Chris Prater, English screenprinter, born in London (d. 1996)
  • 1925 Claude Wagner, French-Canadian politician and judge, born in Shawinigan, Quebec, Canada (d. 1979)
  • 1925 Emmett Williams, American poet, born in Greenville, South Carolina (d. 2007)
  • 1925 Mother Divine [Edna Rose Ritchings], cult leader of the International Peace Mission Movement, born in Vancouver (d. 2017)
  • 1927 Bob Stump, American politician, U.S. House of Representatives from Arizona, born in Phoenix, Arizona (d. 2003)
  • 1929 William F. Clinger Jr., American politician, U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania, born in Warren, Pennsylvania
  • 1931 Denis Frank Owen, British ecologist and natural historian, born in London (d. 1996)
  • 1931 Harold Volkmer, American politician, U.S. House of Representatives from Missouri, born in Jefferson City, Missouri (d. 2011)
  • 1931 Bobby Ray Inman, American admiral and intelligence director, born in Rhonesboro, Texas
  • 1932 Richard Lugar, American politician, U. S. Senator from Indiana, born in Indianapolis, Indiana
  • 1933 Frits Bolkestein, Dutch politician (People's Party for Freedom and Democracy), born in Amsterdam
  • 1933 Robin Phillips, English multi-millionaire manufacturer (hand-dryer)
  • 1935 Lord Ichayra, secretary-general (British Banking Association)
  • 1935 Trevor Griffiths, English playwright (Absolute Beginners), born in Manchester
  • 1937 Ian St James, novelist (Balfour Conspiracy, Vengeance, Money Stones)
  • 1937 Hans van den Doel, Dutch politician and economist (PvdA), born in Zierikzee, Netherlands (d. 2012)
  • 1940 Bijan, Iranian mens apparel designer (Bijan), born in Tehran, Iran (d. 2011)
  • 1940 Vladimir Timofeyevich Isakov, Russian cosmonaut, born in Zilair, Russia
  • 1942 Kitty Kelley, American journalist and author (Unauthorized Biography of Frank Sinatra), born in Spokane, Washington
  • 1943 Ian Robertson, British museum director (National Army Museum)
  • 1944 Magda Aelvoet, Belgian politician (Greens), born in Steenokkerzeel, Belgium
  • 1946 Katsuaki Sato, Japanese martial artist, founder and director of Satojuku Karate, born in Sakhalin, Japan
  • 1947 Wiranto, Indonesian army general (Commander of the Indonesian National Armed Forces), born in Yogyakarta, Indonesia
  • 1948 Dan Simmons, American sci-fi and horror writer (Song of Kali), born in Peoria, Illinois
  • 1949 Shing-Tung Yau, Hong Kong-born American mathematician, born in Shantou, Guangdong Province, China
  • 1951 Hun Sen, Prime Minister of Cambodia, born in Kampong Cham, Cambodia
  • 1953 Robert Bertrand, Canadian politician (Liberal Party of Canada), born in Fort-Coulonge, Quebec, Canada
  • 1956 Lamen Khalifa Fhimah, Suk Giuma Libya, bomber (Pan Am Flight 103)
  • 1970 Mix Master Mike [Michael Schwartz], American turntablist, born in San Francisco, California

Person of interestDavid Blaine

1973 David Blaine, American magician and illusionist, born in Brooklyn, New York

Magician and Illusionist David Blaine
Magician and Illusionist
David Blaine
  • 1975 Delphine Arnault, French businesswoman (Louis Vuitton), born in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France
  • 1975 Thobias Fredriksson, Swedish cross-country skier, born in Dals Rostock, Sweden
  • 1978 Sam Moran, Australian entertainer (The Wiggles), born in Sydney, Australia
  • 2012 Grumpy Cat [Tardar Sauce], American cat internet celebrity, born in Morristown, Arizona (d. 2019)