Welcome to Concordia Historical Institute, Department of Archives and History for the Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod.

Today in History

January 8

482 Severinus of Noricum, an early missionary who preached Christianity in what is now Austria, died (b. ca. 410).

1198 Italian cardinal Lotario di Segni was elected pope, taking the name of Innocent III (ca. 11611216).

1438 The Council of Florence began at Ferrara, Italy, with the Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches in attendance.

1557 Margrave Albrecht of Brandenburg-Kulmbach, a hymnist, died at Pforzheim (b. 28 March 1522).

1560 Jan Łaski (Johannes a Lascow; John Laski, or Lasco), a Polish reformer and associate of Erasmus, died (b. 1499 probably at Lask, near Lodz, Poland).

1583 Simon Episcopius, an Arminian proponent who drew up the formula of faith held by Arminians, was born in Amsterdam, Netherlands (d. 4 April 1643).

1642 Mathematician, physicist, astronomer and devout Roman Catholic Galileo Galilei (b. 15 February 1564, Pisa, Italy), died in Arcetri, Italy, under house arrest by the Inquisition.

1736 Jean le Clerc (Clericus), learned theologian and Arminian, died (b. 19 March 1657).

1788 Jacob Leist, president of the Ohio Synod, was born in Snyder County, Pennsylvania (d. 7 November 1870).

1792 Lowell Mason, American sacred music composer, was born in Medfield, Massachusetts (d. 11 August 1872).

1825 C. H. Rudolph Lange, Lutheran educator and theologian, was born in Polish Wartenberg, Prussia (d. 2 October 1892).

1849 During the Italian Revolution of 18481849, a popular uprising in the Papal States deprived Pope Pius IX of his temporal powers and forced him to flee to Gaeta on the Italian Coast.

1854 Wm. Bengo Collyer, hymnist, died in Peckham, England (b. 14 April 1782, Blackheath, England).

1860 George Weller was born in New Orleans, Louisiana (d. 17 December 1924). He graduated from Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis) in 1882 and served as a pastor in Marysville, Nebraska. He later became director (president) and professor at Concordia Teachers College (Seward, Nebraska), where he served from 1894 to 1924.

1873 Ludwig Adolf Petri, anti-rationalist Lutheran theologian in Hanover, died (b. 16 November 1803, Lüthorst, Hannover, Germany).

1903 Clarence H. Peters was born in Linn, Kansas (d. 18 May 1984, Saint Louis). He graduated from Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis) in 1927 and served congregations in Venus and Scottsbluff, Nebraska, and Saint Louis. From 1944 to 1947 he was the secretary of the Missouri Synod Board for Foreign Missions, and from 1946 to 1962 he was the chairman of the Board for Young Peoples Work.

1920 J. A. O. (Jacob Aall Ottesen) Preus II, eighth president of the Missouri Synod, was born in Saint Paul, Minnesota (d. 13 August 1994).

1931 George Washington Sandt, Lutheran theologian and director of the Philadelphia seminary from 1904 to 1931, died (b. 22 February 1854, Belfast, Pennsylvania).

1956 Jim Elliot (b. 8 October 1927) and four other American Plymouth Brethren missionaries were martyred along the Curaray River by the Auca Indians in Ecuador.

1958 The India Evangelical Lutheran Church was organized.

1975 Louis Lochner, foreign correspondent for the Associated Press in Germany, died (b. 22 February 1887).

1979 The John of Beverley Chair for deaf ministries was established at Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis).

1996 Lewis W. Spitz Sr. (b. 31 July 1895, Minden, Nebraska), died in Saint Louis, Missouri. He graduated from Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis) in 1918. He served as pastor in Lovell, Wyoming, and Bertrand and Blue Hill, Nebraska. He was later a professor at Saint Paul's College (Concordia, Missouri) and Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis). His service to the Missouri Synod included membership on the Press Committee, the Board for Higher Education, the Board of Appeals and the Board for Young People's Work. He was also an associate editor of The Lutheran Witness, Der Lutheraner and the Concordia Theological Monthly. In 1930 he received his M.A. from Washington University (Saint Louis), and in 1943 he received his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. He retired in 1971.