December 1908 in History

Events in History

  • Dec 2 Child Emperor Pu Yi ascends the Chinese throne at the age of two
  • Dec 4 Haiti's president General Alexis Nord flees from military coup
  • Dec 4 The world's ten leading maritime nations attend a Naval Conference in London; they agree on rules for blockade, convoys, and seizure of contraband
  • Dec 5 1st US football uniform numerals used (University of Pittsburgh)
  • Dec 9 The German Reichstag adopts a progressive social law restricting hours of factory work by young people and women
  • Dec 11 Frederick Delius' "In a Summer Garden" premieres in London
  • Dec 16 1st credit union in US forms (Manchester NH)
  • Dec 17 In Turkey the new parliament convenes with reformist Young Turks as the majority
  • Dec 28 Earthquake strikes Messina, Italy, killing nearly 80,000
  • Dec 29 Patent granted for a 4-wheel automobile brake, Clintonville, Wisconsin

Birthdays in History

  • Dec 3 Nigel Balchin, [Mark Spade], English author (Business for Pleasure), born in Potterne, England (d. 1970)
  • Dec 4 A. D. Hershey, American biologist, worked with bacteriophages (Nobel 1969), born in Owosso, Michigan (d. 1997)
  • Dec 6 Pierre Graber, Swiss Federal Councilor (d. 2003)
  • Dec 7 Jacques Gans, Dutch author and journalist, born in Hilversum, Netherlands (d. 1972)
  • Dec 8 John Volpe, (Gov-Mass)/US Secretary of Treasury (1969-73)
  • Dec 10 Arnold van Ruler, Dutch theologist, born in Apeldoorn, Netherlands (d. 1970)
  • Dec 14 Mária Szepes, Hungarian author (The Red Lion), born in Budapest (d. 2007)
  • Dec 16 Remedios Varo, Anglès Spain, Spain-Mexican Surrealist artist
  • Dec 17 Willard Libby, American chemist who developed radiocarbon dating (Nobel 1960), born in Grand Valley, Colorado (d. 1980)
  • Dec 20 Francis Turner, American civil engineer (oversaw the Interstate Highway System), born in Dallas, Texas (d. 1999)
  • Dec 21 Pat Weaver, American radio advertising executive (started Today show), born in Los Angeles, California (d. 2002)
  • Dec 22 Marius F. Duintjer, Dutch architect, born in Veendam, Netherlands
  • Dec 22 Max Bill, Swiss architect & artist (Ruban Sans Fin), born in Winterthur, Switzerland (d. 1994)
  • Dec 23 Yousuf Karsh, portrait photographer (Life Magazine)
  • Dec 25 Quentin Crisp, English author (d. 1999)
  • Dec 25 Zora Arkus-Duntov, Belgian-American automotive engineer (d. 1996)
  • Dec 27 Louis JHCA de Bourbon, Dutch writer/poet (Black Banners)
  • Dec 29 Gerben Sonderman, Dutch test pilot (Fokker), born in Drachten, Netherlands (d. 1955)
  • Dec 31 Simon Wiesenthal, Jewish-Austrian holocaust survivor & Nazi hunter (Wiesenthal Center), born in Buchach, Ukraine (d. 2005)

Deaths in History

  • Dec 9 William Harvey Carney, American Civil War soldier (first African-American to be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor), dies of injuries sustained in an elevator accident at 68
  • Dec 13 Augustus Le Plongeon, French-American photographer and antiquitarian, dies at 83
  • Dec 22 Marie Jungius, Dutch teacher/fairy tale writer, dies at 44
  • Dec 30 Thomas-Alfred Bernier, Canadian lawyer, journalist and senator (b. 1844)