Forthcoming historic anniversaries, Jan 2009

You may wish to write about the following historical events. Dates are given 6 months in advance to allow you time for research and writing. Dates and facts are taken from a reliable source, but we cannot guarantee their accuracy. Please cross-check all information as part of your research and let us know of any errors.

250 years ago (15 Jan 1759)
The British Museum opened at Montagu House, Bloomsbury, London. (Demolished in 1842, but the present museum stands on the same site)

250 years ago (25 Jan 1759)
Birth of Robert Burns, Scottish poet

200 years ago (4 Jan 1809)
Birth of Louis Braille, French inventor of Braille, a writing and printing system for the blind and visually impaired

200 years ago (19 Jan 1809)
Birth of Edgar Allan Poe, American writer, poet, editor and literary critic

150 years ago (27 Jan 1859)
Birth of Kaiser Wilhelm II (William II), German Emperor, King of Prussia

150 years ago (28 Jan 1859)
Death of Frederick John Robinson, 1st Viscount Goderich, British Prime Minister (1827-28)

150 years ago (30 Jan 1859)
Birth of Edward Martyn, Irish dramatist and political activist, co-founder of the Irish Literary Theatre, first President of Sinn Féin

100 years ago (1 Jan 1909)
The first old-age pensions were paid in Britain

100 years ago (3 Jan 1909)
Birth of Victor Borge, Danish-born American comedian, entertainer and pianist, ‘the Clown Prince of Denmark’

100 years ago (23 Jan 1909)
The White Star Liner ‘RMS Republic’ sank off the coast of Nantucket. Over 1,500 people were saved thanks to Marconi’s new wireless telegraph, which was used to call for assistance

100 years ago (28 Jan 1909)
The USA ended direct control of Cuba. US troops left Cuba for the first time since the beginning of the Spanish-American War

80 years ago (18 Jan 1929)
The Soviet Union expelled Leon Trotsky, who went into exile in Turkey

75 years ago (1 Jan 1934)
Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay, USA became a federal prison

75 years ago (29 Jan 1934)
Death of Fritz Haber, German chemist who won the Nobel Prize for developing synthetic ammonia. He is also known as the ‘father of chemical warfare’ for his work on poisonous gases during World War I

75 years ago (30 Jan 1934) Death of Frank Doubleday, American publisher

60 years ago (1 Jan 1949)
The British Nationality Act came into effect. It established the status of ‘Citizen of the United Kingdom and Colonies’, and granted those citizens the right to enter and live in the United Kingdom

60 years ago (25 Jan 1949)
The first Israeli election was held. David Ben-Gurion became the country’s first Prime Minister

60 years ago (25 Jan 1949) The first Emmy Awards were presented at the Hollywood Athletic Club

50 years ago (1 Jan 1959)
Fidel Castro seized power in Cuba, overthrowing Fulgencio Batista

50 years ago (2 Jan 1959)
The Soviet Union launched Luna 1, the first spacecraft to reach the vicinity of the Moon

50 years ago (3 Jan 1959)
Alaska became the 49th state of the USA

50 years ago (8 Jan 1959)
Charles De Gaulle was inaugurated as President of France

50 years ago (12 Jan 1959)
The Motown record label was founded in Detroit, Michigan by Berry Gordy (Note: at that time it was known as Tamla Records)

50 years ago (17 Jan 1959)
Senegal and the French Sudan joined to form the Federal State of Mali

50 years ago (21 Jan 1959)
Death of Cecil B. DeMille, American film director and producer

50 years ago (22 Jan 1959)
Death of Mike Hawthorn, British world champion racing driver

50 years ago (25 Jan 1959)
American Airlines launched the first regular transcontinental jet service in the USA. Their Boeing 707s flew non-stop between New York and LA

50 years ago (29 Jan 1959)
Walt Disney’s animated feature film ‘Sleeping Beauty’ was released

40 years ago (11 Jan 1969)
Death of Richmal Crompton, British writer (‘Just William’)

40 years ago (30 Jan 1969)
The Beatles gave their last public performance, on the roof of Apple Studios in London

30 years ago (2 Jan 1979)
British punk rock star Sid Vicious went on trial in New York, charged with murdering his girlfriend Nancy Spungen

30 years ago (7 Jan 1979)
Vietnamese troops captured the Cambodian capital, Phnom Penh, overthrowing Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge government

30 years ago (16 Jan 1979)
The Shah of Iran fled to Egypt with his family and went into exile

25 years ago (1 Jan 1984)
American communications giant AT&T Bell was broken up into 22 separate companies under the terms of an antitrust agreement

25 years ago (1 Jan 1984)
Death of Alexis Korner, British blues musician

25 years ago (7 Jan 1984)
Death of Alfred Kastler, French physicist, won the Nobel Prize for his work on stimulating atoms, which later led to the development of lasers

25 years ago (14 Jan 1984)
Death of Ray Kroc, American fast-food pioneer (McDonalds)

25 years ago (20 Jan 1984)
Death of Johnny Weissmuller, American swimming champion and actor

25 years ago (21 Jan 1984)
Death of Jackie Wilson, American soul and R&B singer

25 years ago (24 Jan 1984)
The first Apple Macintosh computer went on sale

20 years ago (7 Jan 1989)
Death of Emperor Hirohito of Japan

20 years ago (20 Jan 1989)
George H.W Bush was inaugurated as the 41st President of the United States

20 years ago (23 Jan 1989)
Death of Salvador Dali, Spanish surrealist artist

15 years ago (17 Jan 1994)
The Los Angeles earthquake killed 72 people, injured 11,000, and caused $12.5 billion worth of damage

10 years ago (1 Jan 1999)
The euro officially became the new currency in 11 European countries

10 years ago (7 Jan 1999)
US President Bill Clinton’s impeachment trial began. He was charged with lying under oath and obstructing the course of justice

For more historic anniversaries see The Date-A-Base Book 2009, which spans the whole of 2009 and contains over 1,200 forthcoming anniversaries – more than twice as many entries per month than our standard lists featured here. For example, there are 46 events listed above for January 2009, but 106 events for the same month in the Date-A-Base Book 2009.

The Date-A-Base Book 2009 is an excellent source of ideas for all writers, journalists, film-makers, editors, researchers, producers, teachers, students, speakers and event planners. Just one article sale will pay for your copy many times over!

Dave Haslett, ideas4writers, www.ideas4writers.co.uk

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4 thoughts on “Forthcoming historic anniversaries, Jan 2009

  1. 50 years ago (22 Jan 1959)
    Death of Mike Hawthorn, British world champion racing driver

    I’ve been working on a book for this now for nearly a year and it will be published in the late autumn of this year titled ‘Mike Hawthorn Golden Boy’. Looking like around 400 pages, large format with many hundreds of never-before-seen photos. Real in-depth research on his life and death. Please visit The Mike Hawthorn Tribute Site for more details – a primarily fan-driven book with stories from many people that knew Mike. Thanks!

  2. Re My first post:

    OK I was thinking about it being in actual circulation which was in fact 2002 but it was introduced for accounting in 1999 – so yes it has its 10yr anniversary 1-1-2009.

    Glad we sorted that out!

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