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On This Day in History - 13th December


1797Heinrich Heine, German romantic poet and writer
1925Dick Van Dyke, American actor and comedian, of stage and screen
1929Christopher Plummer, Stage and screen actor
1942Howard Brenton, Playwright of the controversial 'Romans In Britain'
1948Jeff Skunk Baxter, Of the Pop group, 'The Doobie Brothers'
1952John Francome, Champion jockey
1954Jim Davidson, Popular English comedian


1577Francis Drake set sail from Plymouth, in the Golden Hind, on his round the world voyage
1642New Zealand was discovered by the Dutch navigator, Abel Tasman
1847Emily Bronte, under the pseudonym 'Ellis Bell', published 'Wuthering Heights'
1904In London, the Metropolitan Underground railway system went electric
1926Writer Agatha Christie vanished from her Surrey home, to be found in a Harrogate Hotel under an assumed name
1982At Greenham Common air-base, 1,000 women staged a sit-in blockade in protest against 'Cruise' missiles
1984Bucks Fizz member Mike Nolan, was seriously injured in a road accident, and put on a 'life support'system
1990The United Nations launched an aid appeal, when a new famine threatened Ethiopia