On This Day

December 1888 in History

Events in History

  • Dec 11 French Panama Canal Company fails
  • Dec 18 Richard Wetherill and his brother in-law discover the ancient Anasazi ruins of Mesa Verde, Colorado

Historic Expedition

Dec 19 Henry Morton Stanley's expedition reaches Fort Bodo, East-Africa

Journalist and Explorer Henry Morton Stanley
Journalist and Explorer
Henry Morton Stanley

Historic Event

Dec 23 Vincent van Gogh cuts off his left ear with a razor, after argument with fellow painter Paul Gauguin, and sends to a prostitute for safe keeping

Painter Vincent van Gogh
Painter
Vincent van Gogh
Painter and Sculptor Paul Gauguin
Painter and Sculptor
Paul Gauguin
  • Dec 30 Belgium: king Leopold II installs Order of African Star

Birthdays in History

  • Dec 4 Aleksandar I, King of Yugoslavia (1921-34), born in Cetinje, Montenegro (d. 1934)
  • Dec 7 Hamilton Fish III, American politician (Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York), born in Garrison, New York (d. 1991)
  • Dec 7 Joyce Cary, Anglo-Irish writer (House of Children), born in Londonderry, Ireland (d. 1957)
  • Dec 7 Matthew Heywood Campbell Broun, 1st President of American Newspaper Guild
  • Dec 8 Fiske Kimball, American architect and art historian, born in Newton, Massachusetts (d. 1955)
  • Dec 9 Mabel Stark, American tiger trainer "crazy Mabel", born in Tennessee or Kentucky (d. 1968)
  • Dec 15 Artturi Leinonen, Finnish journalist and writer (Kati), born in Ylihärmä, Finland (d. 1963)

Maxwell Anderson

Dec 15 Maxwell Anderson, American dramatist (Winter Set, High Tor), born in Atlantic, Pennsylvania (d. 1959)

Playwright and Dramatist Maxwell Anderson
Playwright and Dramatist
Maxwell Anderson
  • Dec 16 Alphonse Juin, French marshal
  • Dec 16 Alexander I, king of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes (1921–29) and of Yugoslavia (1929–34), born in Cetinje, Montenegro (d. 1934)
  • Dec 18 Robert Moses, power broker (built Long Island & NYC parks & roads)
  • Dec 22 J. Arthur Rank, English industrialist, born in Kingston upon Hull, United Kingdom (d. 1972)
  • Dec 23 Friedrich Wolf, German writer and diplomat, born in Neuwied, Germany (d. 1953)
  • Dec 29 Joseph Beran, Czech Roman Catholic prelate, born in Pilsen, Czech Republic (d. 1969)

Deaths in History

  • Dec 2 Namık Kemal, Turkish writer and journalist (Vatan), dies at 47
  • Dec 3 Carl Zeiss, German scientific instrument and lens maker (Carl Zeiss AG), dies at 72
  • Dec 31 Samson Raphael Hirsch, German Orthodox rabbi and intellectual founder of the Torah im Derech Eretz school of contemporary Orthodox Judaism, dies at 80