James Watt FRS FRSE (19 January 1736 – 25 August 1819) was a Scottish inventor, mechanical engineer, and chemist who improved on Thomas Newcomen’s 1712 Newcomen steam engine with his Watt steam engine in 1781, which was fundamental to the changes brought by the Industrial Revolution in both his native Great Britain and the rest of the world. Born in Greenock, Renfrewshire, Scotland. (d. 1819)
Robert E Lee
Robert E Lee (January 19, 1807 – October 12, 1870) was an American and Confederate soldier, best known as a commander of the Confederate States Army. He commanded the Army of Northern Virginia in the American Civil War from 1862 until his surrender in 1865. A son of Revolutionary War officer Henry “Light Horse Harry” Lee III, Lee was a top graduate of the United States Military Academy and an exceptional officer and military engineer in the United States Army for 32 years. Born Robert Edward Lee in Stratford Hall, Virginia. (d. 1870)
Edgar Allan Poe
Edgar Allan Poe (January 19, 1809 – October 7, 1849) was an American writer, editor, and literary critic. Poe is best known for his poetry and short stories, particularly his tales of mystery and the macabre. In January 1845, Poe published his poem “The Raven” to instant success. Poe is generally considered the inventor of the detective fiction genre and is further credited with contributing to the emerging genre of science fiction. Born Edgar Poe in Boston, Massachusetts. (d. 1849)
Sir Henry Bessemer
Sir Henry Bessemer (19 January 1813 – 15 March 1898) was an English inventor, whose steelmaking process would become the most important technique for making steel in the nineteenth century for almost one century from year 1856 to 1950. He also played a significant role in establishing the town of Sheffield as a major industrial centre. Born in Charlton, Hertfordshire, England. (d. 1898)
Paul Cézanne (19 January 1839 – 22 October 1906) was a French artist and Post-Impressionist painter whose work laid the foundations of the transition from the 19th-century conception of artistic endeavor to a new and radically different world of art in the 20th century. Cézanne’s often repetitive, exploratory brushstrokes are highly characteristic and clearly recognizable. Born in Aix-en-Provence, France. (d. 1906)
Captain Matthew Webb (19 January 1848 – 24 July 1883) was the first recorded person to swim the English Channel without the use of artificial aids for sport purpose. On 25 August 1875, Webb swam from Dover to Calais in less than 22 hours. Born in Dawley, England. (d. 1883)
Javier Pérez de Cuéllar
Pérez de Cuéllar KCMG (born January 19, 1920) is a Peruvian diplomat who served as the fifth Secretary-General of the United Nations from January 1, 1982 to December 31, 1991. Born Javier Felipe Ricardo Pérez de Cuéllar de la Guerra in Lima, Peru.
Patricia Highsmith (January 19, 1921 – February 4, 1995) was an American novelist and short story writer, known for her psychological thrillers, which led to more than two dozen film adaptations. Her first novel, Strangers on a Train, has been adapted for stage and screen numerous times, notably by Alfred Hitchcock in 1951. Highsmith wrote 22 novels and many short stories. Born Mary Patricia Plangman in Fort Worth, Texas. (d. 1995)
Jean Stapleton (born Jeanne Murray; January 19, 1923 – May 31, 2013) was an American character actress of stage, television, and film. Stapleton is best known for having portrayed Edith Bunker, the long-suffering, yet devoted wife of Archie Bunker, on the 1970s sitcom All in the Family. Stapleton was a three-time recipient of the Prime Time Emmy Award for leading actress in a comedy series and won two Golden Globes in the same category. Born Jeanne Murray in Manhattan, New York City. (d. 2013)
Markus Wolf (19 January 1923 – 9 November 2006) was head of the Main Directorate for Reconnaissance (Hauptverwaltung Aufklärung), the foreign intelligence division of East Germany’s Ministry for State Security (MfS, commonly known as the Stasi). He was the Stasi’s number two for 34 years, which spanned most of the Cold War. He is often regarded as one of the greatest spymasters of all time. Born Markus Johannes Wolf in Hechingen. (d. 2006)
Nicholas Colasanto (January 19, 1924 – February 12, 1985) was an American actor and television director, known for his role as “Coach” Ernie Pantusso in the American sitcom Cheers. Born in Providence, Rhode Island. (d. 1985)
Nina Bawden CBE FRSL JP (19 January 1925 – 22 August 2012) was an English novelist and children’s writer. She was shortlisted for the Booker Prize in 1987 and the Lost Man Booker Prize in 2010. She is one of very few who have both served as a Booker judge and made the shortlist as an author. Born in Ilford, Essex, England. (d. 2012)
Tippi Hedren (born January 19, 1930) is an American actress, animal rights activist and former fashion model. She received world recognition for her work in two of his films, the suspense-thriller The Birds in 1963, for which she won a Golden Globe, and the psychological drama Marnie in 1964. Hedren has appeared in over eighty films and TV shows including Charlie Chaplin’s final film, A Countess from Hong Kong (1967). Born Nathalie Kay Hedren in New Ulm, Minnesota.
Patsy Rowlands (19 January 1931 – 22 January 2005) was an English actress who is best remembered for her roles in the Carry On films series, and as Betty Lewis in the popular ITV Thames sitcom Bless This House. Born Patricia Amy Rowlands in Palmers Green, London, England. (d. 2005)
Richard Lester (born January 19, 1932) is an American film director based in Britain. Lester is known for his work with the Beatles in the 1960s and his work on the Superman film series in the 1980s. Born Richard Lester Liebman in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Bryan Pringle (19 January 1935 – 15 May 2002) was an English actor who appeared for decades in television, film and theatre productions. Pringle appeared in many films, beginning with Saturday Night and Sunday Morning (1960) and alongside Norman Wisdom in the 1965 film The Early Bird as the treacherous rival milkman, Austin. Pringle also made regular television appearances including as Cheese & Egg in The Dustbinmen. Born in Glascote, Tamworth, Staffordshire, England. (d. 2002)
Phillip “Phil” Everly (January 19, 1939 – January 3, 2014) with his brother Don (The Everly Brothers) were American country-influenced rock and roll singers, known for steel-string guitar playing and close harmony singing. The duo were elected to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986 and the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2001. Well known for the single “Bye Bye Love”. Born in Chicago, Illinois. (d. 2014)
Mike Reid (19 January 1940 – 29 July 2007) was an English comedian, actor, author and occasional television presenter from London, who is best remembered for playing the role of Frank Butcher in EastEnders and hosting the popular children’s TV show Runaround. Born Michael Reid in London, England. (d. 2007)
Tony Anholt (19 January 1941 – 26 July 2002) was a British television actor, known for his role as Charles Frere in the successful BBC drama series Howards’ Way (1985-90). His other appearances include Gerry Anderson’s Space: 1999 (1976-77) and The Protectors (1972-74). Born Anthony Anholt in Singapore. (d. 2002)
Michael Crawford, CBE (born January 19, 1942) is an English actor, comedian and singer. He has received great critical acclaim and won numerous awards during his career, which covers radio, television, film, and stagework on both London’s West End and on Broadway in New York City. He is best known for playing the hapless Frank Spencer in the popular 1970s British sitcom, Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em (which made him a household name), as well as for originating the title role in The Phantom of the Opera. Born Michael Patrick Smith in Sheerness, Kent, England.
Janis Joplin (January 19, 1943 – October 4, 1970) was an American rock singer and songwriter. She was one of the biggest female rock stars of her era. After releasing three albums, she died of a heroin overdose at the age of 27. A fourth album, Pearl, was released in January 1971, just over three months after her death. It reached number one on the Billboard charts. Born Janis Lyn Joplin in Port Arthur, Texas. (d. 1970)
Laurie London (born 19 January 1944) is an English singer, who achieved fame as a boy singer of the 1950s, for both his gospel and novelty songs recording in both English and German. He is best known for his hit single of the spiritual song “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands”. Born in Bethnal Green, East London.
Julian Barnes (born 19 January 1946) is an English writer. Barnes won the Man Booker Prize for his book The Sense of an Ending (2011), and three of his earlier books had been shortlisted for the Booker Prize: Flaubert’s Parrot (1984), England, England (1998), and Arthur & George (2005). Born Julian Patrick Barnes in Leicester, England.
Dolly Parton (born January 19, 1946) is an American singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, record producer, actress, author, businesswoman, and philanthropist, known primarily for her work in country music. Parton is the most honored female country performer of all time. Achieving 25 certified Gold, Platinum, and Multi-Platinum awards, she has had 25 songs reach No. 1 on the Billboard country music charts, a record for a female artist. She has 41 career top 10 country albums, a record for any artist, and she has 110 career charted singles over the past 40 years. All-inclusive sales of singles, albums, hits collections, and digital downloads during her career have topped 100 million worldwide. She has garnered nine Grammy Awards, two Academy Award nominations, ten Country Music Association Awards, seven Academy of Country Music Awards, three American Music Awards, and is one of only seven female artists to win the Country Music Association’s Entertainer of the Year Award. Parton has received 47 Grammy nominations. She has composed over 3,000 songs, notably “I Will Always Love You”, “Jolene”, “Coat of Many Colors”, and “9 to 5”. Born Dolly Rebecca Parton in Sevier County, Tennessee.
Robert Palmer (19 January 1949 – 26 September 2003) was an English singer-songwriter, musician, and record producer. Palmer received a number of awards throughout his career, including two Grammy Awards for Best Male Rock Vocal Performance, an MTV Video Music Award, and two Brit Award nominations for Best British Male. His album Riptide featured the US No. 1 and UK No. 5 single “Addicted to Love”. The single was accompanied by a memorable and much-imitated music video. Born Robert Allen Palmer in Batley, West Riding of Yorkshire, England. (d. 2003)
Dennis Taylor (born 19 January 1949) is a retired professional snooker player and current BBC snooker commentator. Winner of two ranking events, he is best known for winning the 1985 World Championship, beating World number one Steve Davis on the final black in one of the sport’s most memorable finals. He also won the Grand Prix in 1984 and the Masters in 1987. Taylor is also well known for his sense of humour and his trademark oversized spectacles. He made regular appearances on the snooker game show Big Break. Born Denis Taylor in Coalisland, County Tyrone, Northern Ireland.
Desi Arnaz Jr
Desi Arnaz Jr. (born January 19, 1953) is an American actor and musician. He is the son of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz. From 1968 to 1974, Desi Arnaz and his sister Lucie played opposite their mother in Here’s Lucy as her children. Born Desiderio Alberto Arnaz IV in Los Angeles, California.
Linda Hayden (born 19 January 1953) is an English film and television actress. She is best known for her roles in 1970s British horror films and sex comedies. Born Linda M Higginson in Stanmore, Middlesex, England.
Katey Sagal (born January 19, 1954) is an American actress and singer-songwriter. She is known for playing Peggy Bundy on Married… with Children, Leela on Futurama, and Cate Hennesy on 8 Simple Rules. The actress is also known for her role as Gemma Teller Morrow on the FX series Sons of Anarchy, for which she won a Golden Globe in 2011. Born Catherine Louise Sagal in Los Angeles, California.
Sir Simon Rattle OM CBE (born 19 January 1955) is an English conductor. He rose to international prominence during the 1980s and 1990s, while Music Director of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (1980-98). Rattle has been principal conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic since 2002. He took up this position of Music Director of the London Symphony Orchestra from September 2017. Born Simon Denis Rattle in Liverpool, Merseyside, England.
Martin Bashir (born 19 January 1963) is a British journalist. After initially gaining prominence on British television with his BBC interview with Diana, Princess of Wales, and then his controversial fly on the wall documentary with pop singer Michael Jackson on ITV, Bashir was a political commentator for MSNBC and a correspondent for NBC’s Dateline NBC. Born Martin Henry Bashir in Wandsworth, London, England.
Stefan Edberg (born 19 January 1966) is a Swedish former world no. 1 professional tennis player (in both singles and doubles). He won six Grand Slam singles titles and three Grand Slam men’s doubles titles between 1985 and 1996. He also won the Masters Grand Prix and was a part of the Swedish Davis Cup-winning-team four times. Born Stefan Bengt Edberg in Västervik, Sweden.
Jenson Button MBE (born 19 January 1980) is a British racing driver currently under contract with McLaren-Honda, as a reserve driver. He won the 2009 FIA Formula One World Championship, driving for Brawn GP. Button announced in September 2016 that he would be giving up his seat at the end of the 2016 season. Born Jenson Alexander Lyons Button in Frome, Somerset, England.