Famous Birthdays1865 - Rudyard Kipling, Writer best known for children's books, Nobel laureate in literature in 1907.
1880 - Alfred Einstein, German-American Musicologist and Professor, cousin of scientist Albert Einstein.
1945 - Davy Jones, Musician
1961 - Ben Johnson, Athlete
1975 - Tiger Woods, Golfer
1905 - Franz Lehar's operetta The Merry Widow is first performed in Vienna.
1916 - The 'mad monk' Grigory Rasputin is killed, a challenge and difficult thing to do. He had become a guru to the Russian tsar and family, and was considered a bad influence on them. A group of nobles poison Rasputin's food and wine, but he survives it. Then they tried to shoot him, he collapses, and again survives and half-struggles before trying to flee the palace ground. He is shot three more times, which doesn't stop him. The final attempt is tying him up and throwing him into a freezing river. His body is found later and the official cause of death given is drowning.
1921 - Sergei Prokofiev conducts the premiere of his opera The Love for Three Oranges, in Chicago.
1922 - The Union of Soviet Socialist Republic (U.S.S.R.), is formally established.
1924 - Edwin Hubble, American astronomer, reveals that there are galaxies beyond the Milky Way. He is one of the first to postulate that the red shift he observes in the light spectrum from these galaxies is caused by the continuing expansion of the universe.
1973 - Novelist Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn publishes in Paris The Gulag Archipelago, considered his powerful literary account of the Soviet Union's prison camp system.
1999 - Former Beatles member George Harrison is stabbed several times in the chest by an intruder who broke into his home in Oxfordshire, England. He lives another two years before dying of lung cancer.
Franz Lehár - The Merry Widow - Overture. YouTube, uploaded by Fledermaus1990. Accessed December 30, 2016.
1. Asiado, Tel. The World's Movers and Shapers. New Hampshire: Ore Mountain Publishing House (2005)
2. Chambers Biographical Dictionary, 19th Ed. London: Chambers Harrap, 2011
3. Dateline. Sydney: Millennium House, (2006)
4. Grun, Bernard. The Timetables of History, New 3rd Revised Ed. Simon & Schuster/Touchstone (1991)
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