World Events

January 31st
— A massive uprising of Siberian peasants in the Tyumen Region revolt against the Bolsheviks; disorder continues for over a year¹²

February 21st
Rezā Shāh stages a coup d’état in Iran, ultimately replacing Ahmad Shah Qajar as the Shah of Iran.¹
February 28th
— Soviet sailors in Kronstadt draft the Petropavlovsk resolution, comprising of a list of demands which become the basis for the subsequent Kronstadt Rebellion¹²

March 4th
Warren G. Harding is inaugurated as the 29th President of the United States.¹
March 17th
Marie Stopes opens the first birth control clinic in Britain.¹
March 18th
Poland, Soviet Russia and the Soviet Ukraine sign the Treaty of Riga, ending the Polish-Soviet War.¹

April 11th
— The territory designated by the British Mandate in Palestine is divided along the river Jordan, establishing the Emirate of Transjordan to the east.¹


May 1st
— Riots erupt in Jaffa between Jewish immigrants and Palestinians, leaving 95 dead and 219 injured.¹
May 3rd
— The Government of Ireland Act 1920, passed by the Parliament of the United Kingdom, becomes law; Northern Ireland is established.¹²
May 31st
— The Tulsa Race Riots begin in Tulsa, Oklahoma between white and black communities. Within a day, 35 square blocks are destroyed and over 1,200 houses burned, leaving an estimated 300 dead and nearly 10,000 homeless.¹²³º

July 1st
The Communist Party of China is founded.¹
July 2nd
— President Harding signs a congressional resolution ending America's formal state of war against Germany, Austria and Hungary.¹
July 11th
The Irish War of Independence ends, as Irish and British forces agree to a truce.¹
July 14th
— Anarchists Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti are found guilty of first degree murder.¹
July 18th
— The first BCG vaccination against Tuberculosis is administered to human patients.¹
July 22nd — The Spanish Army of Africa suffers a major defeat against Rif combatants during the Battle of Annual; some 12,000 Spanish troops are killed.¹
July 27th — Canadian researchers at the University of Toronto, led by Frederick Banting and Charles Best, announce the discovery of insulin.¹
July 29thAdolf Hitler is made the Führer of the Nazi Party.¹

August 5th
Radio is used to broadcast coverage of a baseball game for the first time (the Pittsburgh Pirates beating the Philadelphia Phillies 8-5).¹
August 23rd
Faisal I is crowned King of Iraq.¹
August 26th
— German politician Matthias Erzberger is assassinated by extreme nationalists for his role in signing the armistice that ended World War I.¹

September 7th
— The first Miss America Pagent is held.¹
September 17th
— The Shackleton-Rowett Expedition sets out for Antarctica.¹
September 21st
— An explosion at a BASF plant devastates the town of Oppau, Germany, destroying most of its buildings, killing an estimated 500 people, and injuring over 2000 others.¹

October 19th
— The Prime Minister of Portugal António Granjo is assassinated.¹

November 4th
— The Prime Minister of Japan Hara Takashi is assassinated.¹
November 9th
Benito Mussolini establishes the National Fascist Party in Italy.¹²
November 11th
The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is dedicated at Arlington National Cemetary in Virginia.¹
November 22nd
— The Treaty of Rawalpindi is amended, concluding negotiations between the United Kingdom and Afghanistan following the Third Anglo-Afghan War, and acknowledging the latter country’s independence.¹

December 6th
The Irish Free State is established by the Anglo-Irish Treaty.¹² Agnes Macphail becomes the first woman elected to the Canadian Parliament.¹
December 29th
William Lyon Mackenzie King is appointed the 10th Prime Minister of Canada.¹

Assyrian Genocide (1913-1922)¹
Greek Genocide (1914-1923)¹
Armenian Genocide (1915-1923)¹
— The Turkish War of Independence (1918-1923)¹
— The Irish War of Independence (1919-1921)¹
— The Greco-Turkish War (1919-1922)¹
— The Rif War (1919-1926)¹
— The North China Famine (1920-1921)¹
— The Russian Famine of 1921¹


— The German AVUS, precursor to the Autobahn, opens¹
— After years of outdoor trading, the American Stock Exchange building is established on Greenwich Street, in Lower Manhattan¹
— The character Betty Crocker is created by the Washburn Crosby Company¹
— The Bloody Mary is said by some to have been invented by Pete Petiot of Harry's New York Bar in Paris¹
— Max Braun opens an engineering shop, founding the company Braun¹
— The first children's carseats debut¹
— The first upward-lifting garage door is invented by the Overhead Door Company¹
— Guccio Gucci founds Gucci and begins selling leather travel bags¹
— C.A. Dawson-Scott founds International PEN, an association of poets, playwrights, editors, essayist and novelists¹
— Land O'Lakes is founded¹
— The National Honor Society is founded by the National Association of Secondary School Principals¹
Master Lock is founded¹
— Professor Walter Cady of Wesleyan University builds the first crystal-controlled oscillator¹
— The first Pep Boys auto parts supply store is opened in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania¹
— The phrase “A picture is worth a thousand words” is coined by an advertiser in the trade journal Printer’s Ink¹
— Quick Quaker Oats are first introduced¹
— Theodore and Milton Deutschmann open the first RadioShack in downtown Boston, Massachusetts¹
Hermann Rorschach publishes his book Psychodiagnostik, which serves as the foundation for the Rorschach test¹
— The first See's Candies kitchen is opened in Los Angeles, California¹
— The first White Castle restaurant is opened in Wichita, Kansas¹
Wonder Bread is introduced by the Taggart Baking Co.¹


Max Beckmann, The Dream¹
— Lovis Corinth, Death and the Artist¹
Stuart Davis, Lucky Strike¹
Charles Demuth, Incense of a New Church¹
— Charles Demuth, Modern Conveniences¹
Max Ernst, Celebes¹
— Fernand Léger, The Three Women¹
— James Edward Harvey Macdonald, The Solemn Land¹
Piet Mondrian, Composition with Red, Blue, Black, Yellow, and Gray¹
— Piet Mondrian, Diagonal Composition¹
Pablo Picasso, Nude Seated on a Rock¹
— Pablo Picasso, Three Musicians¹
— Pablo Picasso, Three Women at the Spring¹
Man Ray, Gift¹
Paul Signac, Port of La Rochelle¹
— Mario Sironi, Urban Landscape¹
— Chaim Soutine, Landscape at Céret¹
Stanley Spencer, Christ's Entry into Jerusalem¹
Georges Vantongerloo, Construction of Volume Relations¹


Sherwood Anderson, The Triumph of the Egg¹
Aldous Huxley, Crome Yellow¹
H.P. Lovecraft, The Nameless City¹
Luigi Pirandello, Six Characters in Search of an Author¹
Marcel Proust, In Search of Lost Time, vol. 4: Sodom and Gomorrah¹
William Carlos Williams, Sour Grapes¹
Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus¹
W.B. Yeats, Michael Robartes and the Dancer¹

Nobel Prize Winners¹

Albert Einstein, for "his many contributions to theoretical physics, and especially for his discovery of the law of the photoelectric effect."¹
Frederick Soddy, for his research on radioactive decay and his formation of the theory of isotopes.
— No award given.
Anatole France
Hjalmar Branting, Christian Lange

Pulitzer Prize Winners¹

— Louis Seibold of New York World, "for an interview with President Wilson."
Editorial Writing
— No award given.
Public Service

— The Boston Post, "for its exposure of the operations of Charles Ponzi by a series of articles which finally led to his arrest."

The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton

Miss Lulu Bett by Zona Gale

The Victory at Sea by William Sowden Sims in collaboration with Burton J. Hendrick
Biography or Autobiography

The Americanization of Edward Bok by Edward Bok


January 5th
— Jean, Grand Duke of Luxembourg (1964-2000)¹
January 9th
— Lister Sinclair, Canadian broadcaster¹
January 19th
Patricia Highsmith, author of The Talented Mr. Ripley¹
January 27th
Donna Reed, co-starred in It's a Wonderful Life¹
January 31st
— Carol Channing, American actress & singer¹

February 1st
— Peter Sallis, British actor¹
February 4th
Betty Friedan, writer & feminist activist¹
February 14th
— Hugh Downs, American broadcaster¹
February 16th
Hua Guofeng, 2nd Chairman of the Communist Party of China (1976-1981)¹
February 24th
Abe Vigoda, American actor ¹
February 25th
Pierre Laporte, Canadian politician kidnapped and murdered by the FLQ¹

March 1st
Richard Wilbur, 2nd U.S. Poet Laureate¹
March 11th
Frank Harary, American mathematician¹
March 12th
— Giovanni Agnelli, chairman of Fiat (1966-2003)¹
March 13th
— Al Jaffee, American cartoonist¹
March 17th
— Meir Amit, head of the Mossad (1963-1968)¹
March 24th
Vasily Smyslov, chess grandmaster¹
March 25th
Simone Signoret, first French citizen to win an Academy Award¹

April 9th
Yitzhak Navon, 5th President of Israel (1978-1982)¹
April 14th
— Thomas Schelling, awarded the 2005 Nobel Prize in Economics¹
April 16th
Peter Ustinov, English actor and writer¹

May 2nd
Satyajit Ray, Indian filmmaker¹
May 3rd
Sugar Ray Robinson, American boxer¹
May 5th
Arthur Leonard Schawlow, awarded the 1981 Nobel Prize in Physics for his part in the development of the laser¹
May 6th
— Erich Fried, Austrian poet¹
May 9th
Sophie Scholl, German activist executed for high treason by the Nazi party¹
— Mona Van Duyn, 6th U.S. Poet Laureate¹
May 12th
Joseph Beuys, German artist¹
Farley Mowat, author of Never Cry Wolf¹
May 16th
— Harry Carey, jr., American actor¹
May 18th
— Anthony Epstein, co-discoverer of the Epstein-Barr virus¹
May 21st
Andrei Sakharov, Russian scientist¹
May 23rd
Humphrey Lyttelton, English musician¹
May 25th
Jack Steinberger, awarded the 1988 Nobel Prize in Physics for his part in discovering the muon neutrino¹

June 7th
— Bernard Lown, inventor of the defibrillator¹
June 8th
— Alexis Smith, Canadian actress¹
Suharto, 2nd President of Indonesia (1967-1998)¹
June 10th
Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, husband of Queen Elizabeth II¹
June 21st
Jane Russell, American actress¹
June 25th
— Celia Franca, founder of the National Ballet of Canada¹
June 26th
Violette Szabo, English spy¹
June 28th
— P. V. Narasimha Rao, 10th Prime Minister of the Republic of India (1991-1996)¹

July 4th
— Gérard Debreu, awarded the 1983 Nobel Prize in Economics¹
July 6th
Nancy Reagan, wife of U.S. President Ronald Reagan¹
July 10th
Harvey Ball, American artist¹
Jake LaMotta, boxer known as the Raging Bull¹
— Eunice Kennedy Shriver, founder of the Special Olympics¹
July 14th
Geoffrey Wilkinson, awarded 1973 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work with organometallic compounds¹
July 15th
— Robert Bruce Merrifield, awarded the 1984 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for the invention of solid phase peptide synthesis¹
July 17th
— Hannah Szenes, considered a national heroine of Israel for her efforts to save deportees to Auschwitz¹
July 18th
— Aaron T. Beck, father of cognitive therapy¹
John Glenn, first American to orbit Earth ¹
July 19th
— Rosalyn Sussman Yalow, awarded the 1977 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for the development of the radioimmunoassay technique¹
July 26th
Jean Shepherd, author and narrator of A Christmas Story¹

August 4th
Maurice Richard, hockey player known as the Rocket¹
August 11th
Alex Haley, author of Roots and The Autobiography of Malcolm X¹
August 19th
Gene Roddenberry, creator of Star Trek¹
August 23rd
Kenneth Arrow, awarded the 1972 Nobel Prize in Economics¹
August 26th
— Shimshon Amitsur, Israeli mathematician¹
August 28th
— Lidia Gueiler Tejada, first female President of Bolivia¹

September 5th
Jack Valenti, president of the MPAA (1966-2004)¹
September 12th
Stanisław Lem, author of Solaris¹
September 15th
— Norma MacMillan, voice of Casper the Friendly Ghost¹
September 24th
— Jim McKay, host of The Wide World of Sports (1961-1998)¹
September 25th
— Robert Muldoon, 31st Prime Minister of New Zealand (1975-1984)¹
September 30th
Deborah Kerr, star of The King and I¹

October 17th
— Maria Gorokhovskaya, Ukranian gymnist¹
October 21st
— Victor A. McKusick, father of clinical medical genetics¹
October 25th
— Michael of Romania, King of the Romanians (1927-1930, 1940-1947)¹

November 3rd
Charles Bronson, American actor¹
November 5th
— Fawzia Shirin, Queen of Iran (1941-1948)¹
November 6th
James Jones, author of The Thin Red Line¹
November 8th
— Gene Saks, American director¹
November 20th
Jim Garrison, district attorney investigating the J.F.K. assassination¹
November 22nd
Rodney Dangerfield, American comedian & actor¹
November 27th
Alexander Dubček, First Secretary of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia (1968-1969)¹

December 4th
Deanna Durbin, Canadian actress¹
December 26th
Steve Allen, host of The Tonight Show (1964-1957)¹


January 1st
Theobald von Bethmann-Hollweg, Chancellor of the German Empire (1909 to 1917)¹


February 8th
Peter Kropotkin, Russian anarchist¹
March 29th
— John Burroughs, American naturalist¹


April 6th
— Maximilian Berlitz, founder of the Berlitz Language Schools¹



May 5th
Alfred Hermann Fried, awarded the 1911 Nobel Peace Prize¹
May 19
— Edward Douglass White, Jr., 9th Chief Justice of the United States (1910-1921)¹




August 2nd
Enrico Caruso, Italian tenor¹
August 16
— Peter I, King of Serbia (1903-1918)¹
August 26
— Matthias Erzberger, German signatory of the Armistice that ended World War I¹




September 9th
Virginia Rappe, American actress¹
September 11
— Subramania Bharati, Indian poet ¹
September 27
Engelbert Humperdinck, German composer¹




October 18th
— Ludwig III, King of Bavaria (1913-1918)¹
October 19
— António Granjo, 77th Prime Minister of Portugal (1920)¹
October 25
Bat Masterson, gunfighter & lawman¹





November 4th
— Hara Takashi, 19th Prime Minister of Japan (1918-1921)¹
November 11
— Jennie Kidd Trout, first female Canadian doctor¹
November 14
— Isabel, Empress of Brazil (1891-1921)¹
November 28
`Abdu'l-Bahá, head of the Bahá'í Faith (1892-1921)¹



December 16th
Camille Saint-Saëns, French composer¹
December 21st

— P.B.S. Pinchback, first black U.S. governor ¹



The amount of misinformation I encountered while researching this write-up was obscene, particularly regarding specific dates. I've tried to compensate for this as best I can, but, even so, if anyone comes across any factual errors, send me a message. If you have any ideas or suggestions about things to add, I would like to hear them as well.

This write-up originally began as a contribution for the Everything Quest: Node the Ages, though I'm afraid I've long since missed the deadline. I'd also like to mention that my grandfather was born on April 23rd , 1921.

<< 1920 || 1922 >>

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