On This Day

Birthdays in History on December 26

  • 1194 Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor, King of the Romans (Germany), Sicily and Jerusalem, born in Lesi, Italy
  • 1532 Guilielmus Xylander, German classical scholar (d. 1576)
  • 1536 Yi I, Korean Confucian scholar (d. 1584)
  • 1618 Elisabeth, Paltsgravin of Rhine/abbess
  • 1633 Charles E Biset, Flemish painter, baptised
  • 1646 Robert Bolling, English settler in Virginia (d. 1709)
  • 1660 Peter Schenck, German/Neth engraver/publisher, baptised

Person of interestCalico Jack

1682 Calico Jack [John Rackham], English pirate captain who operated in the Bahamas and Cuba, born in England (d. 1720)

Pirate Calico Jack
Calico Jack
  • 1716 Thomas Gray, English poet (Elegy Written in a Country Church Yard)
  • 1716 Jean François de Saint-Lambert, French poet (d. 1803)
  • 1723 Friedrich Melchior, baron von Grimm, German writer (d. 1807)
  • 1731 Anthony Ziesenis, architect/sculptor (Town Hall of Westzaan)
  • 1737 Prince Josias of Coburg, Austrian general (d. 1815)
  • 1738 Thomas Nelson, merchant, signer of Declaration of Independence
  • 1751 Clement Hofbauer, Austrian missionary and saint (d. 1820)
  • 1770 Pierre earl de Cambronne, French general (Waterloo, Elba)

  • 1771 Heinrich J von Collin, Austria dramatist/poet (Regulus)
  • 1771 Julie Clary, queen consort of Naples (d. 1845)
  • 1778 Juan Lovera, Venezuela, artist
  • 1780 Mary Fairfax Somerville, British mathematician (d. 1872)
  • 1782 Filaret Drozdov, Metropolitan of Moscow (d. 1867)

Person of interestCharles Babbage

1791 Charles Babbage, British inventor (calculating machine), born in London, England (d. 1871)

Inventor Charles Babbage
Charles Babbage
  • 1809 William Nelson Pendleton, American Brigadier-General (Confederate Army), born in Richmond, Virginia (d. 1883)
  • 1815 Israel Bush Richardson, American Major General (Union Army), born in Fairfax, Vermont (d. 1862)
  • 1819 E. D. E. N. Southworth, American novelist (d. 1899)
  • 1820 Gustavus Adolphus Smith, American Brigadier General (Union Army), born in Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania(d. 1885)
  • 1824 Augustus Louis Chetlain, American Major General (Union Army), born in St. Louis, Missouri (d. 1914)
  • 1826 Martinus Nijhoff, Dutch publisher (Van Dale) and founder (Martinus Nijhoff Publishers), born in Arnhem, Netherlands (d. 1894)

Person of interestGeorge Dewey

1837 George Dewey, American admiral, naval hero in Battle of Manila Bay, born in Montpelier, Vermont (d. 1917)

Admiral George Dewey
George Dewey
  • 1853 René Bazin, French novelist (d. 1932)
  • 1859 Johan F van Bemmelen, Dutch zoologist
  • 1859 William Stephens, U.S. political figure (d. 1944)
  • 1861 Friedrich Engel, German mathematician (group theory)
  • 1862 Alexander Amfiteatrov, Russian-French-Italian writer, born in Kaluga, Russia (d. 1923)
  • 1872 Norman Angell, British politician/cowboy/journalist, Nobel laureate (1933), (d. 1967)
  • 1878 Isaiah Bowman, American geography/co-founder (Geographical Review)

  • 1883 Frank Debenham, Australian geographer/geologist
  • 1884 Félix Éboué, French colonial administrator, born in Cayenne, French Guiana (d. 1944)
  • 1887 Arthur Ernest Percival, British Army officer (d. 1966)
  • 1890 Uncle Charlie Osborne, American fiddler (d. 1992)

Person of interestHenry Miller

1891 Henry Miller, American author (Tropic of Cancer, Tropic of Capricorn, Sexus), born in Manhattan, New York (d. 1980)

Author Henry Miller
Henry Miller

Person of interestMao Zedong

1893 Mao Zedong, Chinese revolutionary and Chairman of the Communist Party of China (1949-76), born in Shaoshan, Hunan (d. 1976)

Revolutionary and Chairman of the Communist Party Mao Zedong
Revolutionary and Chairman of the Communist Party
Mao Zedong
  • 1894 Jean Toomer, American writer (d. 1967)
  • 1897 Willie Corsari [Wilhelmina A Schmidt], Dutch writer
  • 1902 Anatoli Lvovich Kaplan, Russian painter (d. 1980)
  • 1904 Alenjo Carpentier, Cuban/French writer (Guerra del Tiempo)
  • 1910 Lucy Faithfull, children's campaigner
  • 1911 Steve Kordek, pinball machine designer, born in Chicago, Illinois (d. 2012)
  • 1915 H. A. Gomperts, Dutch writer (Duck on Attic), born in Amsterdam, Netherlands (d. 1998)
  • 1917 Rosemary Woods, Nixon's secretary, keep her away from your tapes
  • 1918 George Rallis, Greek politician, Prime Minister of Greece (d. 2006)
  • 1921 John Severin, American comic book artist (Hulk, Mad Magazine), born in Jersey City, New Jersey (d. 2012)
  • 1922 Norman Orentreich, American dermatologist known as "the father of modern hair transplantation", born in NYC, New York (d. 2019)
  • 1922 Iain Watson Gallaway QSO MBE, New Zealand sports broadcaster (Radio Sport; Halberg Award) and author ("Not a Cloud in the Sky"), born in Dunedin, New Zealand (d. 2021)
  • 1925 Baron Baker, Jamaician-born British activist, born in Port Antonia
  • 1926 Edgar D Ngoyi, South African ANC leader (17 yrs in Robbeneiland Jail)

  • 1932 Walter Leblanc, Belgian painter

Person of interestGnassingbé Eyadéma

1935 Gnassingbé Eyadéma, General and President of Togo (1967-2005), born in Kozah, Togo (d. 2005)

General and President of Togo Gnassingbé Eyadéma
General and President of Togo
Gnassingbé Eyadéma
  • 1936 Kitty Dukakis, substance abuser/wife of Michael (Gov-Mass)
  • 1937 John Horton Conway, British mathematician (cellular automaton Game of Life), born in Liverpool, England (d. 2020)
  • 1937 Jay Heimowitz, American poker player
  • 1939 Lynn Martin, American politician, (Secretary of Labor, 1991-93; US Congress, 1981-91) born in Evanston, Illinois
  • 1940 Edward C. Prescott, American economist, Nobel laureate
  • 1942 Vinicio Cerezo, President of Guatemala (1986-91), born in Guatemala City
  • 1942 Gray Davis, former Governor of California
  • 1946 Gordon Edwards, rocker
  • 1947 James T. Conway, 34th Commandant of the United States Marine Corps
  • 1949 José Ramos-Horta, President of East Timor, Nobel laureate
  • 1951 Richard Skinner, British DJ
  • 1953 Valeri Yuriyevich Sharov, Russian cosmonaut, born in Moscow
  • 1953 Leonel Fernández, Dominican politician & President of the Dominican Republic (2004-12), born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
  • 1953 Steve Sisolak, American politician & Governor of Nevada (2019-), born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • 1954 Peter Edmund Hillary, New Zealand mountaineer, philanthropist and son of Sir Edmund Hillary, born in Auckland, New Zealand
  • 1955 Evan Bayh, American politician, born in Shirkieville, Indiana
  • 1956 Gail Tatterson, WBL center (NY Stars)
  • 1956 Karen Smith, WBL forward (NY Stars)
  • 1956 David Sedaris, American essayist, born in Binghamton, New York
  • 1960 Jim Toomey, American syndicated cartoonist, born in Alexandria, Virginia
  • 1964 Elizabeth Kostova, American author (The Historian), born in New London, Connecticut
  • 1972 Robert Muchamore, English children's author, born in Islington, London
  • 1982 Kenneth Darby, American National Football League player, born in Huntsville, Alabama

Person of interestAlexander Wang

1983 Alexander Wang, American fashion designer (Balenciaga), born in San Francisco, California

Fashion Designer Alexander Wang
Fashion Designer
Alexander Wang