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

Today in History

December 30

39 Flavius Titus, Roman Emperor who crushed the Jewish Revolt in A.D. 70, was born (d. 13 September 81).

1370 Gregory XI (ca. 13361378), the last Avignon pope, was crowned.

1678 William Croft, English sacred music organist, choir director and composer, was born and baptized in Nether Eatington, Warwickshire, England (d. 14 August 1727).

1817 George Whitefield Coan, Presbyterian missionary to Persia, was born in Bergen, New York (d. 21 December 1879).

1823 American revivalist Charles G. Finney (17921875) was licensed to preach. A former lawyer, he had taken up preaching from his conversion.

1838 Hanover College was chartered by the Presbyterian General Assembly of Indiana. The school had been founded by John Finley Crowe as a seminary for training ministers.

1843 Cumberland University was chartered in Lebanon, Tennessee, under Presbyterian auspices. The school had been founded the previous year.

1852 Future U.S. President Rutherford B. Hayes (18221893) married Lemonade Lucy, so called because, as first lady, she forbade alcohol in the Executive Mansion. The Hayeses were both devout Methodists who began each day with prayer and organized Sunday evening worship services at the White House.

1878 Martin F. Kretzmann, secretary of the Missouri Synod, was born in Dudleytown, Indiana (d. 4 January 1963, Cincinnati, Ohio). He graduated from Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis) in 1901 and served as pastor in Vincennes, Indiana (19011904); East Saint Louis, Illinois (19041909); Kendallville (19091956) and Plainfield (1956-1962), Indiana. He retired in 1962 and became a preaching assistant in Cincinnati. He was secretary of the Missouri Synod 1920 to 1956 and a member of the Board of Directors of the synod from 1956 to 1959. He was also secretary of the Central District from 1918 to 1920. He was coeditor of The Devotional Bible, volume 1.

1892 Andrew A. Bonar (b. 29 July 1810), Scottish clergyman who was identified with the evangelical and revival movements of his day, died.

1894 K. G. Theodore Naether (18661904) sailed for India as missionary. Naether and Franz E. Mohn were the first Missouri Synod missionaries to India.

1900 J. I. Wilhelm Thomas, New Guinea missionary, died (b. 6 June 1843).

1904 Johann Heinrich Sieker, president of the Minnesota Synod and a founder of Concordia Collegiate Institute (Bronxville, New York), died (b. 23 October 1839 at Schweinfurth, Bavaria, Germany).

1933 Martin Enoch Waldeland, literary editor at Augsburg Publishing House, died (b. 18 September 1876 at Gunder, Clayton County, Iowa).

1937 Noel Paul Stookey, American folk singer and music producer, was born. Stookey first became a celebrity as Paul of the 1960s folk trio Peter, Paul and Mary. He is now a Christian recording artist, operating his own recording studio. He prefers his born-again name Noel.

1947 Alfred North Whitehead (b. 15 February 1861), English philosopher and theologian, died.

1961 Instituto Concordia (Sao Paulo, Brazil) opened.

2009 Michael J. Stelmachowicz died in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin (b. 18 September 1927, Saint Louis, Missouri). He was a graduate of Saint John's College (Winfield, Kansas), Concordia Teachers College (Seward, Nebraska) and Concordia Seminary (Saint Louis, Missouri). During his career he served as a Lutheran teacher, principal of Lutheran High School South (Saint Louis), professor and dean of students at Concordia Teachers College (Seward), superintendent of the Lutheran High School Association of Greater Detroit, Michigan; president of Saint John's College and Concordia Teachers College (Seward) and executive director of the Board for Higher Education of the Missouri Synod.