On This Day

Deaths in History on October 4

  • 1052 Vladimir of Novgorod (b. 1020)
  • 1072 Sancho II, king of Castile/bro of Alfonso VI, murdered at about 35
  • 1221 William III Talvas, Count of Ponthieu (b. 1179)
  • 1250 Herman VI, Margrave of Baden
  • 1305 Emperor Kameyama of Japan (b. 1249)
  • 1540 Helius Eobanus Hessus, German humanist/poet (Silvae), dies
  • 1564 Pietro P Vergerio, Italian theologist/bishop of Croatia, dies
  • 1571 Claude Togniel d'Espence, French theologist (Sorbonne), dies at 60
  • 1582 Theresia van Avila, Spanish mystic writer, dies
  • 1590 Cujacius, [Jacques Cujas], French lawyer, dies at about 68
  • 1597 Sarsa Dengel, Emperor of Ethiopia (b. 1550)
  • 1661 Jacqueline Pascal, French child prodigy, dies at 36
  • 1680 Pierre-Paul Riquet, French engineer
  • 1688 Philips Koninck, Dutch landscape painter, dies at 68
  • 1721 Abraham Alewijn, Dutch poet and playwright (Beslikte Swaantje), dies at 36

  • 1743 John Campbell, 2nd duke of Argyll and field marshal (Union of 1707), dies at 64
  • 1749 Franz Freiherr von der Trenck, Austrian soldier (b. 1711)
  • 1754 Tanacharison, Catawba Indian chief
  • 1755 Samuel von Cocceji, German lawyer, dies
  • 1785 David Brearly, American statesman (b. 1703)
  • 1821 John Rennie, Scottish engineer, dies at 60
  • 1830 Ludwig Yorck von Wartenburg, Prussian Generalfeldmarschall, dies at 71
  • 1851 Manuel de Godoy, Spanish statesman (b. 1767)
  • 1859 Karl Baedeker, German publisher (known for guidebooks for tourists), dies at 57
  • 1862 William Duncan Smith, American Brigadier General (Confederate Army), dies at 36
  • 1863 Gerrit Schimmelpenninck, earl of Nijenhuis/Peckedam, dies at 69
  • 1864 Joseph Montferrand, French-Canadian logger and strong man, dies at 61
  • 1867 Francis Xavier Seelos German-American Roman Catholic priest (b. 1819)
  • 1880 William Lassell, British astronomer who discovered satellites of Uranus & Neptune, dies at 81
  • 1890 Catherine Booth, the Mother of The Salvation Army (b. 1829)
  • 1892 Guillaume Van Kerckhoven, Belgian captain, dies at 39
  • 1893 Pieter J Elout van Soeterwoude, MP (AR), dies at 88
  • 1902 Lionel Pigot Johnson, British poet and critic (Ireland & Other Poems), dies of a stroke at 35
  • 1903 Otto Weininger, Austrian philosopher (b. 1880)
  • 1904 Karl Bayer, Austrian chemist (b. 1847)

  • 1912 Gen Zeledon, Nicaraguan opponent of US occupation, is executed
  • 1929 John Metzelaar, Dutch/American writer (Report on the Fishes), dies at 37
  • 1935 Jean Béraud, French painter (b. 1849)
  • 1943 Richard T. Ely, American economist and author (Ground under our feet), dies at 89
  • 1943 Irena Iłłakowicz, Polish agent of Intelligence, dies at 37
  • 1944 Alfred "Al" Smith, American politician, 4 time Governor of New York (1919-20 and 1923-28), and 1st Roman Catholic presidential candidate (D, 1928), dies at 70
  • 1947 Max Planck, German physicist, father of Quantum Physics (Planck Constant, Nobel 1918), dies at 89
  • 1948 Arthur Whitten Brown, British aviator (first nonstop airplane crossing of the Atlantic with John W. Alcock), dies at 62
  • 1951 Willie Moretti, American gangster (b. 1894)
  • 1951 Henrietta Lacks [Loretta Pleasant], African-American tobacco farmer whose cancer cells are the source of the HeLa cell line, extensively used in medical research since the 1950s (1st immortalised cell line), dies of cervical cancer at 31
  • 1955 Alexander Papagos, Greek fieldmarshal and supreme commander, dies at 71
  • 1961 Max Weber, Polish-Russian-American painter, dies at 80
  • 1961 Benjamin (Fedchenkov), Bishop of the Russian Church and Orthodox missionary, dies at 81
  • 1966 Sherman Billingsley, talk show host (Stork Club), dies at 66
  • 1968 Francis Biddle, 58th United States Attorney General (1941-45), dies at 82
  • 1974 Anne Sexton, American poet (Live or Die; Pulitzer 1967), dies at 45
  • 1982 Ahmad Hassan al-Bakr, Iraqi fieldmarshal and President of Iraq (1968-79), dies at 68
  • 1991 Leonard C Odell, wrote 7,000 Burma Shave poems, dies at 83
  • 1992 Itzhak Fuks, El Al captain, crashes in Bijlmer Netherlands
  • 1992 Ohad Arnon, El Al captain, crashes in Bijlmer Netherlands
  • 1993 Fran Carlon, dies of cancer at 80
  • 1994 F. Gwendolen Rees, Welsh zoologist and parasitologist, dies at 88
  • 1995 Peter Nicholson Gunn, Australian writer (The Churches of Rome), dies at 81
  • 1996 Martyn Harris, journalist, dies at 43
  • 1996 Tim N Gidal Gidalewitsch, photojournalist, dies at 87
  • 1999 Bernard Buffet, French painter (Expressionism), dies at 71
  • 2000 Michael Smith, English-Canadian biochemist (Nobel 1993- Site-directed mutagenesis), dies at 68
  • 2000 Yu Kuo-hwa, former Premier of Taiwan (b. 1914)
  • 2001 Ahron Soloveichik, Orthodox Jewish rabbi, dies at 84
  • 2002 Alphonse Chapanis, founder of ergonomics (b. 1917)
  • 2003 Sid McMath, American politician (b. 1912)
  • 2004 Gordon Cooper, American astronaut (b. 1927)
  • 2005 Stanley K. Hathaway, American politician (27th Governor of Wyoming), dies at 81
  • 2006 Oskar Pastior, Romanian-born German writer, dies at 78
  • 2009 Günther Rall, German fighter ace (b. 1918)

Person of interestVõ Nguyên Giáp

2013 Võ Nguyên Giáp, Vietnamese general (Dien Bien Phu, Vietnam War) and politician, dies at 102

North Vietnamese General Võ Nguyên Giáp
North Vietnamese General
Võ Nguyên Giáp

Person of interestJean-Claude Duvalier

2014 Jean-Claude Duvalier "Baby Doc", Haitian dictator and deposed Haitian president-for-life (1971-86) infamous for his brutality, dies of a heart attack at 63

Dictator and President of Haiti Jean-Claude Duvalier
Dictator and President of Haiti
Jean-Claude Duvalier
  • 2016 Hso Khan Pha, 1st President of the democratic and newly independent Union of Burma from 1948-52, dies at 78
  • 2017 Liam Cosgrave, Irish politician (Fine Gael Party), dies at 97