What happened on January 20? There are more than 293 events that were made this day in history. Here are the important historical events, facts, and some myths about this day.

Interesting Facts & Myths About January 20

January 20 In HistoryJanuary 20 is the 20th day of the year 2021. There are 345 days remaining until the end of this year. The day of the week is Wednesday. This day falls under the 3rd week of the year 2021.

On this day in Twin Peaks, California 92391 sunrise occured at 06:48 AM and sunset occured at 05:01 PM (local time).

The zodiac sign of a person born on this day is Capricorn. The modern birthstone for this month is Garnet while the mystical birthstone is Emerald.

According to the Chinese calendar, there are 23 days remaining before the start of the next Chinese New Year (February 12, 2021).

Birthday curiousity Is your birthday coming up in two days? Are you not curious to find out who is sharing your special day? Discover all the August 6 famous birthdays. There are fun facts about that day that you must know. (Sponsored link)

January 20: A Day In History

In the ancient astronomy, it was the cusp day between Capricorn and Aquarius. In some years it is Aquarius, but others Capricorn. It depends on the year.

Historical Events For January 20

  • 250
    Emperor Decius begins a widespread persecution of Christians in Rome. Pope Fabian is martyred.
  • 1265
    In Westminster, the first English parliament conducts its first meeting held by Simon de Montfort in the Palace of Westminster, now also known colloquially as the “Houses of Parliament”.
  • 1320
    Duke Wladyslaw Lokietek becomes king of Poland.
  • 1356
    Edward Balliol abdicates as King of Scotland.
  • 1502
    The present-day location of Rio de Janeiro is first explored.
  • 1523
    Christian II is forced to abdicate as King of Denmark and Norway.
  • 1576
    The Mexican city of León is founded by order of the viceroy Don Martín Enríquez de Almanza.
  • 1649
    Charles I of England goes on trial for treason and other “high crimes”.
  • 1783
    The Kingdom of Great Britain signs a peace treaty with France and Spain, officially ending hostilities in the American Revolutionary War (also known as the American War of Independence).
  • 1788
    The third and main part of First Fleet arrives at Botany Bay. Arthur Phillip decides that Botany Bay is unsuitable for the location of a penal colony, and decides to move to Port Jackson.
  • 1801
    John Marshall is appointed the Chief Justice of the United States.
  • 1839
    In the Battle of Yungay, Chile defeats an alliance between Peru and Bolivia.
  • 1841
    Hong Kong Island is occupied by the British.
  • 1885
    L.A. Thompson patents the roller coaster.
  • 1887
    The United States Senate allows the Navy to lease Pearl Harbor as a naval base.
  • 1920
    The American Civil Liberties Union is founded.
  • 1921
    The first Constitution of Turkey is adopted, making fundamental changes in the source and exercise of sovereignty by consecrating the principle of national sovereignty.
  • 1929
    In Old Arizona, the first full-length talking motion picture filmed outdoors, is released.
  • 1934
    Fujifilm, the photographic and electronics company, is founded in Tokyo, Japan.
  • 1936
    Edward VIII becomes King of the United Kingdom.
  • 1941
    A Nazi officer is murdered in Bucharest, Romania, sparking a rebellion and pogrom by the Iron Guard, killing 125 Jews and 30 soldiers.
  • 1942
    World War II: At the Wannsee Conference held in the Berlin suburb of Wannsee, senior Nazi German officials discuss the implementation of the “Final Solution to the Jewish Question”.
  • 1945
    World War II: Germany begins the evacuation of 1.8 million people from East Prussia, a task which will take nearly two months.
  • 1945
    World War II: Hungary agrees to an armistice with the Allies.
  • 1949
    Point Four Program a program for economic aid to poor countries announced by United States President Harry S. Truman in his inaugural address for a full term as President.
  • 1954
    The National Negro Network is established with 40 charter member radio stations.
  • 1959
    The first flight of the Vickers Vanguard.
  • 1960
    Hendrik Verwoerd announces a plebiscite on whether South Africa should become a Republic.
  • 1969
    East Pakistani police kill student activist Amanullah Asaduzzaman. The resulting outrage is in part responsible for the Bangladesh Liberation War.
  • 1972
    Pakistan launched its Nuclear detterent program few weeks after its defeat in Bangladesh Liberation War and Indo-Pakistani War of 1971.
  • 1981
    Twenty minutes after Ronald Reagan is inaugurated, at age 69 the oldest man ever to be inaugurated as U.S. President, Iran releases 52 American hostages.
  • 1986
    Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is celebrated as a federal holiday for the first time.
  • 1987
    Church of England envoy Terry Waite is kidnapped in Lebanon.
  • 1990
    On Black Saturday, the Red Army kills Azerbaijani civilians in Baku.
  • 1991
    Sudan’s government imposes Islamic law nationwide, worsening the civil war between the country’s Muslim north and Christian south.
  • 1992
    Air Inter Flight 148 crashes near Strasbourg, France, killing 82 passengers and five crew members.
  • 1999
    The China News Service announces new government restrictions on Internet use, aimed especially at Internet cafés.
  • 2001
    Philippine president Joseph Estrada is ousted in a nonviolent 4-day revolution, and is succeeded by Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
  • 2006
    Witnesses report seeing a bottlenose whale swimming in the River Thames, the first time the species had been seen in the Thames since records began in 1913.
  • 2007
    A three-man team, using only skis and kites, completes a 1093 mi trek to reach the southern pole of inaccessibility for the first time since 1958 and for the first time ever without mechanical assistance.

Who Were Born On January 20?

  • 225
    Gordian III, Roman Emperor (d. 244)
  • 1292
    Elisabeth of Bohemia (1292–1330) (d. 1330)
  • 1435
    Ashikaga Yoshimasa, Japanese shogun (d. 1490)
  • 1554
    King Sebastian of Portugal (d. 1578)
  • 1586
    Johann Schein, German composer (d. 1630)
  • 1664
    Giovanni Vincenzo Gravina, Italian writer and jurist (d. 1718)
  • 1716
    Jean-Jacques Barthélemy, French writer and numismatist (d. 1795)
  • 1716
    King Charles III of Spain (d. 1788)
  • 1732
    Richard Henry Lee, American statesman (d. 1794)
  • 1755
    Sir Albemarle Bertie, 1st Baronet, Royal Navy admiral (d. 1824)
  • 1775
    André-Marie Ampère, French physicist (d. 1836)
  • 1781
    Joseph Hormayr Freiherr zu Hortenburg, Austrian politician (d. 1848)
  • 1783
    Justus Johann Friedrich Dotzauer, German cellist and composer (d. 1860)
  • 1798
    Anson Jones, 5th and last President of Texas (d. 1858)
  • 1804
    Eugène Sue, French novelist (d. 1857)
  • 1812
    Thomas Meik, Scottish engineer (d. 1896)
  • 1834
    George D. Robinson, 34th Governor of Massachusetts (d. 1896)
  • 1837
    David Josiah Brewer, U.S. Supreme Court Justice (d. 1910)
  • 1855
    Ernest Chausson, French composer (d. 1899)
  • 1867
    Yvette Guilbert, French singer and actress (d. 1944)
  • 1873
    Johannes Vilhelm Jensen, Danish Nobel laureate (d. 1950)
  • 1876
    Józef Hofmann, Polish pianist (d. 1967)
  • 1878
    Finlay Currie, British actor (d. 1968)
  • 1878
    Ruth St. Denis, American dancer (d. 1968)
  • 1880
    Walter W. Bacon, American politician and 60th Governor of Delaware (d. 1962)
  • 1889
    Allan Haines Loughead, American aviation executive (d. 1969)
  • 1891
    Mischa Elman, Ukrainian born violinist (d. 1967)
  • 1893
    Georg Åberg, Swedish athlete (d. 1946)
  • 1894
    Walter Piston, American composer (d. 1976)
  • 1895
    Gábor Szegő, Hungarian mathematician (d. 1985)
  • 1896
    George Burns, American actor, comedian (d. 1996)
  • 1896
    Isabel Withers, American actress (d. 1968)
  • 1898
    U Razak, Burmese politician (d. 1947)
  • 1899
    Clarice Cliff, English ceramic artist (d. 1972)
  • 1899
    Kenjiro Takayanagi, Japanese development of television (d. 1990)
  • 1900
    Colin Clive, British actor (d. 1937)
  • 1902
    Leon Ames, American actor (d. 1993)
  • 1903
    Jennifer Ishikawa, Japanese singer (d. 1985)
  • 1907
    Paula Wessely, Austrian actress (d. 2000)
  • 1908
    Fleur Cowles, American writer, editor and artist (d. 2009)
  • 1910
    Joy Adamson, Austrian naturalist and writer (d. 1980)
  • 1911
    Wendell J. Westcott, American carillonneur (d. 2010)
  • 1912
    Walter Briggs, Jr., American sports executive (d. 1970)
  • 1913
    Cleon Skousen, American author (d. 2006)
  • 1915
    Ghulam Ishaq Khan, President of Pakistan (d. 2006)
  • 1918
    Juan García Esquivel, Mexican bandleader (d. 2002)
  • 1918
    Nevin S. Scrimshaw, American food scientist
  • 1920
    DeForest Kelley, American actor (d. 1999)
  • 1920
    Federico Fellini, Italian film director (d. 1993)
  • 1920
    Frank Kush, American football player and coach
  • 1920
    Thorleif Schjelderup, Norwegian author and ski jumper (d. 2006)
  • 1921
    Telmo Zarraonaindía, Spanish footballer (d. 2006)
  • 1922
    Graham Stark, British actor
  • 1922
    Ray Anthony, American trumpeter, bandleader and actor
  • 1923
    Nora Brockstedt, Norwegian singer
  • 1924
    Slim Whitman, American singer
  • 1925
    Ernesto Cardenal, Nicaraguan theologian and politician
  • 1926
    David Tudor, American pianist and composer (d. 1996)
  • 1926
    Jamiluddin Aali, Pakistani poet, essayist and columnist
  • 1926
    Patricia Neal, American actress (d. 2010)
  • 1926
    Qurratulain Hyder, Indian and Pakistani novelist (d. 2007)
  • 1928
    Rudy Boesch, Contestant on Survivor: Borneo (3rd Place) and Survivor: All-Stars (17th Place)
  • 1929
    Arte Johnson, American actor
  • 1929
    Edward Glenn “Fireball” Roberts, American race car driver (d. 1964)
  • 1929
    Jimmy Cobb, American jazz drummer
  • 1930
    Buzz Aldrin, American astronaut
  • 1931
    David Lee, American physicist, Nobel Prize in Physics laureate
  • 1931
    Hachidai Nakamura, Japanese songwriter and pianist (d. 1992)
  • 1932
    Lou Fontinato, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1933
    Ron Townson, American singer (The 5th Dimension) (d. 2001)
  • 1934
    Tom Baker, British actor
  • 1935
    Alexander Men, Russian priest (d. 1990)
  • 1935
    Joan Weston, Roller Derby Queen (d. 1997)
  • 1937
    Dorothy Provine, American singer, dancer and actress (d. 2010)
  • 1938
    Derek Dougan, Northern Irish footballer (d. 2007)
  • 1938
    William Berger, Austrian actor (d. 1993)
  • 1939
    Paul Coverdell, American politician (d. 2000)
  • 1940
    Carol Heiss, American figure skater
  • 1940
    Krishnam Raju, Indian actor and politician
  • 1941
    Pierre Lalonde, Canadian singer and television host
  • 1942
    Linda Moulton Howe, American investigative journalist and documentary producer-writer-director-editor
  • 1944
    Farhad Mehrad, Iranian musician (d. 2002)
  • 1944
    José Luis Garci, Spanish filmmaker
  • 1945
    Christopher Martin-Jenkins, cricket commentator and correspondent
  • 1945
    Eric Stewart, English musician and songwriter (10cc)
  • 1945
    Robert Olen Butler, American writer
  • 1946
    David Lynch, American film director
  • 1947
    Cyrille Guimard, French cyclist and directeur sportif
  • 1948
    Mel Pritchard, British Musician
  • 1948
    Nancy Kress, American writer
  • 1948
    Natan Sharansky, Russian-born physicist and politician
  • 1949
    Göran Persson, Prime Minister of Sweden (1996–2006)
  • 1950
    Chuck Lefley, Canadian ice hockey player
  • 1950
    Daniel Benzali, Brazilian-American actor
  • 1950
    Edward Hirsch, American poet
  • 1950
    Liza Goddard, British actress
  • 1950
    Mahamane Ousmane, President of Niger
  • 1951
    Ian Hill, British musician (Judas Priest)
  • 1951
    Ivan Fischer, Hungarian conductor
  • 1952
    Paul Stanley, American musician (Kiss)
  • 1953
    Colleen Zenk Pinter, American actress
  • 1953
    Jeffrey Epstein, American financier and convicted sex offender
  • 1954
    Ken Page, American cabaret singer and actor
  • 1954
    Rudy La Scala, Venezuelan singer-songwriter
  • 1955
    Hiromi Ōta, Japanese singer
  • 1955
    Joe Doherty, Provisional Irish Republican Army member
  • 1955
    Wyatt Knight, American actor
  • 1956
    Bill Maher, American author, comedian, and political analyst
  • 1956
    Maria Larsson, Swedish politician
  • 1958
    Lorenzo Lamas, American actor
  • 1959
    R.A. Salvatore, American author
  • 1959
    Tami Hoag, American novelist
  • 1960
    Apa Sherpa, Nepalese Sherpa mountaineer, summitted Everest 19 times
  • 1960
    Scott Thunes, American musician (Frank Zappa)
  • 1960
    Will Wright, American computer game designer
  • 1963
    Firebreaker Chip, American professional wrestler
  • 1963
    James Denton, American actor
  • 1964
    Kazushige Nojima, Japanese game scenario writer
  • 1964
    Ozzie Guillén, Venezuelan-born baseball player and manager
  • 1964
    Ron Harper, American basketball player
  • 1965
    Anton Weissenbacher, Romanian footballer
  • 1965
    Colin Calderwood, Scottish footballer
  • 1965
    Greg Kriesel, American bassist (The Offspring)
  • 1965
    Heather Small, British Soul Singer
  • 1965
    John Michael Montgomery, American singer
  • 1965
    Sophie, Countess of Wessex, the wife of Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex
  • 1965
    Warren Joyce, English footballer
  • 1966
    Rainn Wilson, American actor
  • 1966
    Stacey Dash, American actress
  • 1966
    Tracii Guns, American guitarist
  • 1968
    Melissa Rivers, American reporter and actress
  • 1968
    Nick Anderson, American basketball player
  • 1969
    Nicky Wire, British musician (Manic Street Preachers)
  • 1969
    Patrick K. Kroupa, American computer hacker
  • 1970
    Edwin McCain, American singer-songwriter
  • 1970
    Kerri Kenney-Silver, American actress
  • 1970
    Mitch Benn, UK comedian, songwriter and actor
  • 1970
    Skeet Ulrich, American actor
  • 1971
    Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, American drummer (The Roots)
  • 1971
    Brian Giles, American baseball player
  • 1971
    Derrick Green, American singer (Sepultura)
  • 1971
    Gary Barlow, English singer (Take That)
  • 1971
    Gerard McDonnell, Irish mountaineer (d. 2008)
  • 1971
    Wakanohana Masaru, Japanese sumo wrestler, the 66th Yokozuna
  • 1973
    Princess Mathilde, Duchess of Brabant
  • 1974
    David Dei, Italian footballer
  • 1975
    David Eckstein, American baseball player
  • 1975
    Norberto Fontana, Argentine racing driver
  • 1976
    Gretha Smit, Dutch speed skater
  • 1976
    Kirsty Gallacher, Scottish television presenter
  • 1977
    Melody, Belgian singer
  • 1977
    Sid Wilson, American Musician, (Slipknot)
  • 1978
    Allan Søgaard, Danish footballer
  • 1978
    Joy Giovanni, American actress and glamour model
  • 1978
    Luciano Zauri, Italian footballer
  • 1978
    Sonja Kesselschläger, German heptathlete
  • 1979
    Asaka Kubo, Japanese gravure idol of 20th Century
  • 1979
    Shang Yi, Chinese footballer
  • 1979
    Will Young, British singer
  • 1980
    Brigitte Olivier, Belgian judoka
  • 1980
    Philippe Cousteau, Jr., French oceanographer; grandson of Jacques Cousteau
  • 1981
    Brendan Fevola, Australian Rules Football Player
  • 1981
    Crystal Lowe, Canadian actress
  • 1981
    Daniel Cudmore, Canadian actor
  • 1981
    Freddy Guzmán, Dominican baseball player
  • 1981
    Jason Richardson, American basketball player
  • 1981
    Owen Hargreaves, English footballer
  • 1982
    Fredrik Strømstad, Norwegian footballer
  • 1982
    Joe Swash, English actor
  • 1983
    Geovany Soto, Puerto Rican baseball player
  • 1983
    Mari Yaguchi, Japanese singer (Morning Musume)
  • 1983
    Paula Taylor, English-Thai actress, model and presenter
  • 1984
    Olivia Hallinan, English actress
  • 1984
    Toni Gonzaga, Filipina actress and singer
  • 1986
    Derek Fathauer, American professional golfer
  • 1987
    Marco Simoncelli, Italian motorcycle racer (d. 2011)
  • 1988
    Benjamin Ulrich, German rugby player
  • 1988
    Denisse Lara, American singer-songwriter
  • 1988
    Jeffrén Suárez, Spanish footballer
  • 1989
    Washington, Brazilian footballer
  • 1991
    Jolyon Palmer, English racing driver; son of Jonathan Palmer

Who Died On January 20?

  • 250
    Pope Fabian
  • 1156
    Bishop Henry, patron saint of Finland
  • 1191
    Frederick VI, Duke of Swabia (b. 1167)
  • 1479
    King John II of Aragon (b. 1397)
  • 1568
    Myles Coverdale, English Bible translator
  • 1612
    Rudolf II, Holy Roman Emperor (b. 1552)
  • 1663
    Isaac Ambrose, English Puritan divine (b. 1604)
  • 1666
    Anna of Austria, wife of Louis XIII of France and regent (b. 1601)
  • 1707
    Humphrey Hody, English theologian (b. 1659)
  • 1709
    François de la Chaise, French confessor of Louis XIV of France (b. 1624)
  • 1739
    Francesco Galli-Bibiena, Italian architect/designer (b. 1659)
  • 1751
    John Hervey, 1st Earl of Bristol, English politician (b. 1665)
  • 1770
    Charles Yorke, Lord Chancellor of Great Britain (b. 1722)
  • 1779
    David Garrick, English actor (b. 1717)
  • 1810
    Benjamin Chew, Chief Justice of colonial Pennsylvania (b. 1722)
  • 1819
    King Charles IV of Spain (b. 1748)
  • 1837
    Sir John Soane, English neo-classical architect (b. 1753)
  • 1841
    Minh Mang, the second emperor of the Nguyen Dynasty of Vietnam (b. 1791)
  • 1848
    Christian VIII of Denmark (b. 1786)
  • 1850
    Adam Oehlenschläger, Danish poet (b. 1779)
  • 1852
    Ōnomatsu Midorinosuke, Japanese sumo wrestler, the 6th Yokozuna (b. 1794)
  • 1873
    The Blessed Father Basil Anthony Marie Patrice Moreau, Founder of the Congregation of Holy Cross (b. 1799)
  • 1875
    Jean-François Millet, French painter (b. 1814)
  • 1877
    Dato Maharajalela Lela, Malay nationalist.
  • 1891
    King Kalākaua, of Hawaiʻi (b. 1836)
  • 1900
    John Ruskin, English art critic (b. 1819)
  • 1901
    Zénobe Gramme, Belgian engineer (b. 1826)
  • 1908
    John Ordronaux, American Civil War army surgeon, a professor of medical jurisprudence, and pioneering mental health commissioner (b. 1830)
  • 1913
    José Guadalupe Posada, Mexican engraver and illustrator (b. 1852).
  • 1920
    Georg Lurich, Estonian wrestler (b. 1876)
  • 1924
    Ivor Crapp, Australian rules football umpire (b. 1872)
  • 1936
    King George V of the United Kingdom (b. 1865)
  • 1940
    Omar Bundy, American army general (b. 1861)
  • 1944
    James McKeen Cattell, American psychologist (b. 1860)
  • 1947
    Josh Gibson, American baseball player (b. 1911)
  • 1954
    Fred Root, English cricketer (b. 1890)
  • 1962
    Robinson Jeffers, American poet (b. 1887)
  • 1965
    Alan Freed, American disk jockey (b. 1922)
  • 1971
    Gilbert M. ‘Broncho Billy’Anderson, American actor, director, writer, and producer (b. 1880)
  • 1971
    Minanogawa Tōzō, Japanese sumo wrestler, the 34th Yokozuna (b. 1903)
  • 1973
    Amilcar Cabral, Guinea Bissauan and Cape Verdian politician (b. 1924)
  • 1973
    Lorenz Böhler, Austrian physician (b. 1885)
  • 1979
    Gustav Winckler, Danish singer (b. 1925)
  • 1980
    William Roberts, British painter (b. 1895)
  • 1983
    Garrincha, Brazilian footballer (b. 1933)
  • 1984
    Johnny Weissmuller, American swimmer and actor (b. 1904)
  • 1988
    Dora Stratou, Greek choreographer and folklorist (b. 1903)
  • 1988
    Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan, Pashtun Nationalist & non-violent freedom fighter (b. 1890)
  • 1989
    Alamgir Kabir, Bangladeshi film director (b. 1938)
  • 1990
    Barbara Stanwyck, American actress (b. 1907)
  • 1990
    Hayedeh, Persian singer (b. 1942)
  • 1993
    Audrey Hepburn, Anglo-Dutch actress (b. 1929)
  • 1994
    Sir Matt Busby, Scottish football player and coach (b. 1909)
  • 1996
    Gerry Mulligan, American musician (b. 1927)
  • 1997
    Curt Flood, American baseball player (b. 1938)
  • 1998
    Bobo Brazil, American professional wrestler (b. 1924)
  • 2002
    Carrie Hamilton, actress and singer, daughter of comedienne/actress Carol Burnett (b. 1963).
  • 2003
    Al Hirschfeld, American caricaturist (b. 1903)
  • 2003
    Bill Werbeniuk, Canadian snooker player (b. 1947)
  • 2003
    Craig Kelly, American snowboarder (b. 1966)
  • 2003
    Nedra Volz, American actress (b. 1908)
  • 2004
    Guinn Smith, American athlete (b. 1920)
  • 2005
    Jan Nowak-Jeziorański, Polish journalist, writer, and politician (b. 1913)
  • 2005
    Miriam Louisa Rothschild, British zoologist, entomologist, and author (b. 1908)
  • 2005
    Parveen Babi, Indian Actress and Model (b. 1949)
  • 2005
    Per Borten, Prime Minister of Norway (b. 1913)
  • 2005
    Roland Frye, American literary critic and theologian (b. 1921)
  • 2006
    Dave Lepard, Swedish rock singer and guitarist (b. 1980)
  • 2009
    David Newman, American jazz musician, nicknamed “Fathead” (b. 1933)
  • 2009
    Sheila O'Nions Walsh (aka Sheila Walsh, Sophie Leyton), English romance writer (b. 1928)
  • 2009
    Stéphanos II Ghattas, Patriarch Emeritus of Alexandria for the Coptic Catholic Church (b. 1920)
  • 2009
    Stan Hagen, Canadian politician (b. 1940)

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