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

Today in History

October 15

1389 Pope Urban VI died (b. ca. 1318).

1567 Martin Chemnitz (1522–1586) became superintendent of Brunswick.

1582 Pope Gregory XIII (15021585) implemented the Gregorian calendar. In Italy, Poland, Portugal and Spain, October 4 of this year was followed directly by October 15.

1701 Marie-Marguerite d'Youville, Canadian saint, was born (d. 23 December 1771). She founded the Grey Nuns or Sisters of Charity of Montreal and was the first Canadian-born person to be elevated to sainthood.

1764 Edward Gibbon (17371794) observes a group of friars singing in the ruined Temple of Jupiter in Rome, which inspired him to begin work on The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.

1779 Johan Olof Wallin, hymnist, was born at Stora Tuna, Sweden (d. 30 June 1839).

1784 Thomas Hastings, hymnist and composer, was born in Litchfield (or Washington), Connecticut (d. 15 May 1872).

1834 The Basel Mission began work in India.

1838 Martin Stephan (17771846), leader of the Saxon Immigration to Perry County, Missouri, was placed under house arrest by the Dresden authorities.

1840 In Mehlville, Missouri, the German Evangelical Church Society (Kirchenverein) of the West was founded. It became the German Evangelical Synod of North America in 1872, and the German was dropped in 1925. The denomination merged with the Reformed Church in June 1934 at Cleveland, Ohio, to form the Evangelical and Reformed Church. This group merged with the Congregational Christian Churches in 1957 to form the United Church of Christ.

1844 Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche, German philosopher and poet, was born (d. 25 August 1900).

1851 George Foote Moore, American Old Testament scholar, was born in West Chester, Pennsylvania (d. 1931).

1865 Jacob Tanner, professor at Concordia College (Moorhead, Minnesota) and Luther Seminary (Saint Paul, Minnesota), was born in Molde, Norway (d. 25 January 1964).

1880 Germany’s Cologne Cathedral was completed 633 years after construction began.

1881 William Temple, Anglican clergyman and Archbishop of Canterbury, was born in Exeter, England (d. 26 October 1944).

1888 Beale Melanchthon Schmucker, American Lutheran liturgiologist, died (b. 26 August 1827, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania).

1900 Charles Fox Parham (18731929) opened the Bethel Bible Institute in Topeka, Kansas, where Agnes Ozman and other students would speak in tongues New Years Eve and begin the modern Pentecostal movement.

1906 Samuel Porter (Sam) Jones (b. 1847), American evangelist, died.

1932 A small party of supporters gathered in Liverpool, England, to send Gladys Aylward (19021970), a 28-year-old parlor maid, off on a dangerous missionary journey to China. Though she had been turned down by the missions agency she applied to, she went on to become one of the most amazing single woman missionaries of modern history. Her dramatic rescue of a hundred orphans is told in the movie The Inn of the Sixth Happiness, starring Ingrid Bergman.

1949 Billy Graham (b. 7 November 1918) skyrocketed to national prominence with an evangelistic crusade in Los Angeles.

1979 Alfred Martin Rehwinkel died (b. 25 June 1887). He graduated from Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis) in 1910 and served parishes in Pincher Creek and Edmonton, Alberta. He also taught at Concordia College (Edmonton, Alberta), Saint Johns College (Winfield, Kansas) and Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis).