Historical Figures Born in 1921

  • Jan 1 César Baldaccini, French sculptor, born in Marseille, France (d. 1998)
  • Jan 1 Ismail al-Faruqi, Palestinian philosopher, born in Jaffa, British-mandate Palestine (d. 1986)
  • Jan 5 Friedrich Dürrenmatt, Swiss playwright and novelist (The Physicists, The Visit), born in Konolfingen, Switzerland (d. 1990)
  • Jan 5 Jean, Grand Duke of Luxembourg, born in Berg Castle, Luxembourg
  • Jan 6 Lou Harris, American pollster (Lou Harris Poll), born in New Haven, Connecticut (d. 2016)
  • Jan 8 Herta Bothe, Nazi concentration camp guard, born in Teterow, Germany
  • Jan 13 Dachine Rainer, British writer (d. 2000)
  • Jan 14 Charles Gaupp, German-Dutch painter, born in Germany (d. 1943)
  • Jan 14 Murray Bookchin, American libertarian socialist, born in NYC, New York (d. 2006)
  • Jan 16 Francesco Scavullo, American celebrity photographer, born in Staten Island, New York (d. 2004)
  • Jan 17 Antonio Prohias, Cuban cartoonist (d. 1998)
  • Jan 18 Robert Glaser, American educational psychologist (National Assessment of Educational Progress), born in Providence, Rhode Island (d. 2012)
  • Jan 18 Yoichiro Nambu, Japanese-born American Physicist (Nobel Prize 2008), born in Tokyo (d. 2015)
  • Jan 19 "Billy Batts" Devino, American gangster (d. 1970)
  • Jan 19 Patricia Highsmith [Plangman], American novel writer (Strangers On A Train; The Talented Mr. Ripley; The Price of Salt), born in Fort Worth, Texas (d. 1995)
  • Jan 20 Bernt Engelmann, German writer, born in Berlin, Germany (d. 1994)
  • Jan 21 Barney Clark, 1st to receive a permanent artificial heart
  • Jan 21 Howard Unruh, American mass murderer
  • Jan 24 Bernard J. Dwyer, American politician (Rep-D-NJ, 1981- 93), born in Perth Amboy, New Jersey (d. 1998)
  • Jan 25 Russell Reading Braddon, Australian author, born in Sydney, Australia (d. 1995)
  • Jan 26 Akio Morita, Kasugaya Japan, CEO (Sony)
  • Jan 26 Eddie Barclay, French producer (Barclay Records) (d. 2005)
  • Jan 31 E. Fay Jones, American architect (d. 2004)

Betty FriedanBetty Friedan (1921-2006)

Feb 4 American feminist and writer (The Feminine Mystique), born in Peoria, Illinois

  • Feb 7 Bryan Woods, soldier/clerk
  • Feb 8 Nexhmije Hoxha, Albanian wife of dictator Enver Hoxha 'Lady Macbeth of Albania', born in Manastir, Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (d. 2020)
  • Feb 9 Charles Montgomery Monteith, publisher
  • Feb 11 Edward Seidensticker, American scholar (d. 2007)
  • Feb 11 Lloyd Bentsen, (Sen-D-TX, 1971- )/1989 Dem VP nominee)
  • Feb 13 Henk van Galen Last, Dutch journalist
  • Feb 13 Zao-Wou-Ki, Chinese/French painter and graphic artist
  • Feb 14 Albert Sloman, Vice-Chancellor (Essex U)
  • Feb 14 Skeezix, of "Gasoline Alley" discovered on Wallets' doorstep
  • Feb 15 Radha Krishna Choudhary, Indian historian and writer (d. 1985)
  • Feb 16 Araucaria [John Galbraith Graham], British crossword compiler (The Guardian) and priest, born in Oxford, England (d. 2013)
  • Feb 16 Esther Bubley, American photographer, born in Phillips, Wisconsin (d. 1998)

Hua GuofengHua Guofeng (1921-2008)

Feb 16 Chairman of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (1976-81) and Premier of the People's Republic of China (1976-80), born in Jiaocheng County, Shanxi

  • Feb 19 Andries Treurnicht [Dr No], South African politician (founder of the South African Conservative Party), born in Piketberg, South Africa (d. 1993)

Joseph A. WalkerJoseph A. Walker (1921-1966)

Feb 20 American experimental physicist, World War II and NASA test pilot (1st spaceplane flights to edge of outer space), born in Washington, Pennsylvania

  • Feb 22 David Greene, British television director, born in Manchester, England (d. 2003)

Jean-Bédel BokassaJean-Bédel Bokassa (1921-1996)

Feb 22 President (1966-76) and later Emperor (1976-79) of the Central African Republic, born in Bobangui, then French Equatorial Guinea

  • Feb 22 Wayne Booth, American literary critic, born in American Fork, Utah (d. 2005)
  • Feb 24 Ludvik Aschkenazy, Czech writer (Brutus), (d. 1986)
  • Feb 28 Pierre Clostermann, French World War II pilot (d. 2006)
  • Feb 28 Saul Zaentz, American record company executive (Fantasy), and film producer (One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest; Amadeus; The Unbearable Lightness Of Being; The English Patient), born in Passaic, New Jersey (d. 2014)
  • Mar 1 Richard Wilbur, 2nd US Poet Laureate (Ceremony, Walking to Sleep)
  • Mar 1 Terrence "Cardinal" Cooke, (NY)
  • Mar 5 Berkley Bedell, American politician (Rep-D-IA, 1975-87), born in Spirit Lake, Iowa (d. 2019)
  • Mar 6 Oliver Wright, British Ambassador (To US)
  • Mar 10 Paul Coates, American columnist (Tonight! America After Dark), born in NYC, New York
  • Mar 11 F. M. Busby, American sci-fi author (Star Rebel)
  • Mar 11 Frank Harary, American mathematician (d. 2005)
  • Mar 12 (Giovanni) "Gianni"Agnelli, Italian industrialist, executive (President of Fiat Automobiles, 1966-96), and Italian Senator-for-life (1991-), born in Turin, Italy (d. 2003)
  • Mar 12 Max de Metz, Dutch publisher/translator
  • Mar 12 Ülo Jõgi, Estonian freedom fighter (d. 2007)
  • Mar 13 Al Jaffee, American comic strip cartoonist and illustrator (MAD Magazine), born in Savannah, Georgia
  • Mar 14 S. Truett Cathy, American businessman (founder of Chick-fil-A), born in Eatonton, Georgia (d. 2014)
  • Mar 16 Anne Truitt [Anne Dean], American sculptor, born in Baltimore, Maryland (d. 2004)
  • Mar 16 Fahd bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, King of Saudi Arabia (1982-2005), born in Riyadh, Sultanate of Nejd (d. 2005)
  • Mar 17 Donald Barron, Scottish accountant and CEO (Midland Bank), born in Gorebridge, Midlothian, Scotland (d. 2015)
  • Mar 20 Amadou-Mahtar M'Bow, Senegal, director general (UNESCO)
  • Mar 21 Abdul Salam Arif, Iraqi politician and President of Iraq (1963-66), born in Baghdad, Mandatory Iraq (d. 1966)
  • Mar 21 Joe Sutter, American engineer and head of the Boeing 747 program, born in Seattle, Washington (d. 2016)
  • Mar 22 Wilhelmus Norbert Schmelzer, Dutch foreign minister (KVP), born in Rotterdam, Netherlands (d. 2008)
  • Mar 23 Donald Campbell, English boat and land racer (world land and water records 1964; only person to complete in same year), born in Kingston upon Thames, England (d. 1967)
  • Mar 23 Ian Todd, pres (Royal College of Surgeons)
  • Mar 23 Wolfgang Altendorfer, writer
  • Mar 24 Sir Wilson Harris, Guyanese author (Palace of the Peacock:; Jonestown; The Ghost of Memory), born in New Amsterdam, British Guiana (d. 2018)
  • Mar 25 Alexandra of Greece and Denmark, Queen of Yugoslavia (d. 1993)
  • Mar 26 George Jefferson, British CEO (British Telecom)
  • Mar 27 Tom Bevill, American Democratic fifteen-term U.S. congressman, born in Townley, Alabama (d. 2005)
  • Mar 29 Hugh Neill, British businessman and Army officer, Lord-Lieutenant (South Yorkshire), born in Sheffield, Yorkshire
  • Mar 30 Countess of Sutherland, English great land owner/multi-millionaire
  • Apr 4 Willem J "Wim" the Villiers, South African minister of Administration
  • Apr 5 Patricia Ford, Lady Fisher, Irish politician and founder (British Women Caring Trust), born in Donaghadee, County Down, Ireland (d. 1995)
  • Apr 6 Franta Belsky, Czecg-British sculptor, born in Brno, Czechia (d. 2000)
  • Apr 6 Lord Moore of Wolvercote [Philip Brian Cecil Moore], Private Secretary to the Sovereign (UK)
  • Apr 9 Yitzhak Navon, President of Israel (1978-83), born in Jerusalem, British Mandate of Palestine (d. 2015)
  • Apr 10 Peter Herbert Penwarden, English priest, born in Walthamstow, England (d. 1995)
  • Apr 11 Martin Buckmaster, 3rd Viscount Buckmaster, British diplomat
  • Apr 12 Alfred Mabbs, British archivist (Public Records Office), born in London (d. 2009)
  • Apr 13 Hans Heinrich Thyssen-Bornemisza, Dutch-Swiss industrialist, born in Scheveningen, Netherlands (d. 2002)
  • Apr 13 Maxwell Henley Harris, Australian poet and publisher (Gift of Blood), born in Adelaide, Australia (d. 1995)
  • Apr 14 Rosanell Eaton, American voting rights advocate, born near Louisburg, North Carolina (d. 2018)
  • Apr 14 Thomas Schelling, American economist, (Nobel Prize 2005 - game-theory analysis), born in Oakland, California (d. 2016)
  • Apr 15 Georgy Beregovoy, Soviet cosmonaut (Soyuz 3), born in Fedorivka, Poltava Oblast, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic (d. 1995)
  • Apr 19 Glyn England, British electrical engineer and CEO (CEGB, Windcluster Ltd), born in Llantrisant, Cardiff, South Wales (d. 2013)
  • Apr 20 Donald Gunn MacRae, sociologist, born in Glasgow (d. 1997)
  • Apr 25 Jean Mogin, Belgian poet (Pastures of Silence), and playwright, born in Brussels, Belgium (d. 1986)
  • Apr 25 Karel Appel, Dutch painter (Vragende Children), born in Amsterdam (d. 2006)
  • Apr 26 Margaret Gowing, English historian (Independence and Deterrence: Britain and Atomic Energy), born in Kensington, London (d. 1998)
  • Apr 29 Cornelis de Jager, Dutch astronomer (Sun), born in Den Burg, Texel, Netherlands
  • Apr 30 Roger L. Easton, American scientist and inventor (GPS), born in Craftsbury, Vermont (d. 2014)
  • May 1 Paul Daels, president (Flemish Iron Pilgrimage committee)
  • May 2 Satyajit Ray, Indian director (Goddess, Adversary), born in Calcutta, India (d. 1992)
  • May 3 Vasco Gonçalves, Portuguese army officer and 103rd Prime Minister of Portugal (1974-75), born in Lisbon, Portugal (d. 2005)
  • May 4 Edo Murtić, Croatian painter, born in Velika Pisanica, Bjelovar, Croatia (d. 2005)

Arthur Leonard SchawlowArthur Leonard Schawlow (1921-1999)

May 5 American physicist who shared the 1981 Nobel Prize in Physics for his pioneering work with lasers, born in Mount Vernon, New York

  • May 6 Erich Fried, Austrian-British writer, born in Vienna (d. 1988)
  • May 6 Robert Fell, British CEO (British Stock Exchange)
  • May 8 Graham Leonard, Bishop of London, most senior Anglican to convert to Catholicism since the reformation (d. 2010)
  • May 9 Daniel Berrigan, American Jesuit priest and peace activist (Vietnam War), born in Virginia, Minnesota (d. 2016)
  • May 9 Mona Van Duyn, American poet (d. 2004)
  • May 9 Sophie Scholl, German anti-Nazi political activist, active in the non-violent resistance group, the White Rose (Die Weisse Rose), born in Forchtenberg, Germany (d. 1943)
  • May 11 Hildegard Hamm-Brücher, German politician, born in Essen, Germany (d. 2016)
  • May 11 Ian Percival, British politician (C) and Solicitor General (d. 1998)
  • May 12 Farley Mowat, Canadian writer and naturalist, born in Belleville, Ontario, (d. 2014)
  • May 12 Giovanni Benelli, Italian archbishop (Florence) and Papal candidate
  • May 12 Henry Mackie, designer of the Belfast Calorimeter
  • May 12 Joseph Beuys, German avant-garde painter (Fluxus, movement), born in Krefeld, Germany (d. 1986)
  • May 13 Syd[ney G] Vincent, British mine workers leader
  • May 16 Robert Croften Brown, politician
  • May 17 John Garlick, British senior civil servant
  • May 18 Anthony Epstein, English pathologist and virologist (Epstein–Barr virus)
  • May 19 Karel van het Reve, Dutch writer, translator, and Russian literature historian (Comrade's Religion), born in Amsterdam, Netherlands (d. 1999)
  • May 19 William H. Stewart, 10th US Surgeon General (1965-69), born in Minneapolis, Minnesota (d. 2008)
  • May 20 John Harrison, British vice admiral/surgeon
  • May 20 John Marchi, US Senator (Rep-R-NY 1957-2006), born in Staten Island, New York (d. 2009)
  • May 20 Wolfgang Borchert, German writer, born in Hamburg (d. 1947)

Andrei SakharovAndrei Sakharov (1921-1989)

May 21 Russian nuclear physicist and an activist for disarmament, peace and human rights (Nobel 1975), born in Moscow, Russia

  • May 23 Sanderson Temple, circuit judge
  • May 25 Jack Steinberger, American physicist (1988 Nobel Prize for Physics - Neutrinos), born in Bad Kissingen, Germany (d. 2020) [1]
  • May 27 Caryl Chessman, kidnapper who got death penalty (1960)
  • May 28 Heinz G. Konsalik, German author (d. 1999)
  • May 28 Tom Uren, Australian politician, Australian heritage and conservation campaigner, born in Sydney, New South Wales (d. 2015)
  • May 29 George Terry, British chief constable (Sussex, England) (d. 1995)
  • May 31 Andrew Grima, Italian-born British jeweller known for his modern designs, born in Rome, Italy (d. 2007)
  • May 31 Robert Arthur Ley, English sci-fi author (Telepath, Power of X) (d. 1968)
  • Jun 2 Alexander Salkind, producer (Superman)
  • Jun 7 Richard M. Givan, American jurist (Indiana Supreme Court, 1969-94), born in Indianapolis, Indians (d. 2009)
  • Jun 8 Alwyn Williams, Welsh geologist and Vice-Chancellor (University of Glasgow), born in Aberdare, Wales (d. 2004)
  • Jun 8 LeRoy Neiman, American painter, born in Saint Paul, Minnesota (d. 2012)

SuhartoSuharto (1921-2008)

Jun 8 Indonesian army officer and 2nd President of Indonesia (1967-98), born in Yogyakarta, Java

  • Jun 9 Arthur Hertzberg, American Jewish scholar (d. 2006)
  • Jun 9 Forrest Bird, American aviator and inventor (1st respirators and ventilators), born in Stoughton, Massachusetts (d. 2015)

Prince PhilipPrince Philip (1921-2021)

Jun 10 Duke of Edinburgh and consort of Great Britain's Elizabeth II, born in Mon Repos, Corfu, Greece

  • Jun 11 Beatrice "Fiet" van Ommeren-Samson, Suriname writer, born in Paramaribo, Suriname (d. 2012)
  • Jun 11 Michael Meyer, English novelist and translator, born in London (d. 2000)
  • Jun 12 Christopher Derrick, British writer, born in Hungerford, Berkshire, England (d. 2007)
  • Jun 12 H. C. Artmann, Austrian writer, born in Vienna (d. 2000)
  • Jun 12 Hendrik Witteveen, Dutch economist, Minister of Finance (1963–65; 1967–71), born in Zeist, Netherlands
  • Jun 19 Allan Davis, London mayor (1985-86), born in London (d. 1994)
  • Jun 19 Herman Berserik, Dutch painter and graphic artist
  • Jun 19 Howell Heflin, American politician (Sen-D-Alabama, 1979-97), born in Poulan, Georgia (d. 2005)
  • Jun 21 Jean de Broglie, French politician, born in Paris (d. 1976)
  • Jun 22 Barbara F. Vucanovich, American politician (Rep-R-NV, 1983-1997), born in Camp Dix, New Jersey (d. 2013)
  • Jun 23 Jean [Jean Benoît Guillaume Robert Antoine Louis Marie Adolphe Marc d'Aviano], Grand Duke of Luxembourg (1964-2000), born in Berg Castle, Luxembourg
  • Jun 26 Abe Jan Koldijk, SS-physician (Limburg's family doctor), born in Vreeland, Netherlands
  • Jun 26 Violette Szabo, French WWII secret agent, born in Paris, France (d. 1945)
  • Jun 27 G. M. J. Veldkamp, Dutch politician (CDA), born in Breda, Netherlands (d. 1990)
  • Jun 28 P. V. Narasimha Rao, Indian politician, 9th Prime Minister of India (1991-96), born in Warangal District, India (d. 2004)
  • Jun 29 Frédéric Dard, French writer (San-Antonio), born in Bourgoin-Jallieu, Isère, France (d. 2000)
  • Jul 1 Seretse Khama, 1st President of Botswana (1966-80), born in Serowe, Botswana (d. 1980)
  • Jul 4 Gérard Debreu, French-American economist (Nobel Prize, 1983), born in Calais, France (d. 2004)

Dmitri PolyakovDmitri Polyakov (1921-1988)

Jul 6 Soviet Major General and spy for the CIA, born in Ukraine

Nancy ReaganNancy Reagan (1921-2016)

Jul 6 US First Lady (1981-89), born in NYC, New York

  • Jul 7 Adolf von Thadden, German politician (d. 1996)
  • Jul 9 Jacob J. Hage, Dutch farmer and WW II resistance fighter
  • Jul 10 Harvey Ball, American inventor and designer of popular 'smiley-face' graphic, born in Worcester, Massachusetts (d. 2001)
  • Jul 13 Charles Scribner Jr [IV}, American literary publisher, born in Quogue, New York (d. 1995)
  • Jul 13 Friedrich Peter, Austrian poltitician (d. 2005)
  • Jul 14 Geoffrey Wilkinson, English chemist (1973 Nobel Prize - organometallic compounds), born in Todmorden, England (d. 1996)
  • Jul 14 Leon Garfield, English children's author (Devil-in-the-Fog), born in Brighton, England (d. 1996)
  • Jul 14 Sixto Durán Ballén, Ecuadorian politician, President of Ecuador (1992-96), born in Boston, America (d. 2016)
  • Jul 16 Bernard W. Rogers, United States Army general who served as the Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army and NATO's Supreme Allied Commander, Europe, born in Fairview, Kansas (d. 2008)
  • Jul 16 Trevor Illtyd Williams, scientific writer, born in Bristol, England (d. 1996)
  • Jul 18 Aaron Beck, American psychiatrist (father of cognitive behavioural therapy), born in Providence, Rhode Island (d. 2021) [1]

John GlennJohn Glenn (1921-2016)

Jul 18 American astronaut (1st American to orbit the earth) and politician (Senator D-Ohio), born in Cambridge, Ohio

  • Jul 19 Rosalyn Yalow, American medical physicist (Nobel 1977), born in NYC, New York (d. 2011)
  • Jul 22 Colin Madigan, Australian architect (National Gallery of Australia), born in Glen Innes, New South Wales (d. 2011)
  • Jul 22 William Roth, American politician (Sen-R-Delaware, 1971-2001), born in Great Falls, Montana (d. 2003)
  • Jul 23 Harry Hookway, English first Chief Executive of the British Library (1973-84), born in London, England (d. 2014)
  • Jul 23 Peter Twiss, British test pilot (breaking the World Air Speed Record and being the first person to exceed 1,000 mph in flight), born in Lindfield, Sussex (d. 2011)
  • Jul 25 John Christopherson, English artist and collector, born in Blackheath, London (d. 1996)
  • Jul 29 Aled Eames, Welsh maritime historian, born in Llandudno (d. 1996)
  • Jul 30 Jacques Van der Schueren, Belgian minister of Economic Affairs, born in Aalst, Belgium (d. 1997)
  • Jul 31 Peter Benenson, British founder of Amnesty International, born in London (d. 2005)
  • Jul 31 Whitney Young Jr, American civil rights leader, head of the Urban League, born in Shelby County, Kentucky (d. 1971)
  • Aug 3 Hayden Carruth, American poet (The Crow and the Heart), born in Waterbury, Connecticut (d. 2008)
  • Aug 8 Vulimiri Ramalingaswami, Indian medical scientist, born in Srikakulam, British India (d. 2001)
  • Aug 9 Ernest Angley, American Christian televangelist, born in Gastonia, North Carolina
  • Aug 9 J. James Exon, American Democratic politician (33rd Governor of Nebraska), born in Geddes, South Dakota (d. 2005)
  • Aug 10 Leonard Lickorish, dir-gen (British Tourist Authority)

Alex HaleyAlex Haley (1921-1992)

Aug 11 American writer (Autobiography of Malcolm X, Roots), born in Ithaca, New York

  • Aug 12 Patrick Howard-Dobson, president (Royal British Legion)
  • Aug 13 Louis Frémaux, French conductor (Monte-Carlo Philharmonic, 1956-65; City of Birmingham Symphony, 1969-78; Sydney Symphony, 1979-82), born in Aire-sur-la-Lys, France (d. 2017)
  • Aug 17 Geoffery Elton, German born British historiographer, born in Tübingen, Germany (d. 1994)
  • Aug 18 Zdzisław Żygulski, Jr., Polish art historian
  • Aug 19 Philip A. Potter, Dominica Secretary-General World council of Churches
  • Aug 22 James Menter, British physicist and principal (Queen Mary College), born in Teynham, Kent (d. 2006)
  • Aug 23 Kenneth Arrow, American economist, (Nobel Prize, 1972), born in NYC, New York (d. 2017)
  • Aug 25 Brian Moore, Irish novelist (Catholics, Doctor's Wife), born in Belfast, Ireland (d. 1999)
  • Aug 25 Bryce Mackasey, Canadian politician, born in Quebec, Canada (d. 1999)

Ben BradleeBen Bradlee (1921-2014)

Aug 26 American editor, journalist and newspaper executive (Washington Post), born in Boston, Massachusetts

  • Aug 26 Naomi Parker Fraley, American who inspired "Rosie the Riveter" poster, born in Tulsa, Oklahoma (d. 2018)
  • Aug 27 Georg Alexander, Duke of Mecklenburg, head of the House of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, born in Nice, France (d. 1996)
  • Aug 28 John Herbert Chapman, Canadian physicist, and space researcher, born in London, Ontario (d. 1979)
  • Aug 31 Raymond Williams, Welsh academic and novelist (Second Generation), born in Llanfihangel Crucorney, Wales (d. 1988)
  • Sep 1 Willem Frederik Hermans, Dutch writer (Mandarins on Sulfuric Acid)
  • Sep 3 Marguerite Higgins, American reporter and war correspondent, Pulitzer prize winner (d. 1966)

About 1921

Chinese Zodiac: Monkey (Feb 20, 1920 - Feb 7, 1921),
Rooster (Feb 8, 1921 - Jan 27, 1922)