1923 1924 1925 - 1926(MCMXXVI) - 1927 1928 1929
1890s 1900s 1910s - 1920s - 1930s 1940s 1950s
19th century - 20th century - 21st century
1926 was a common year starting on Friday (link will take you to calendar).
- January 1 - Ireland's first regular radio service, 2RN (later Radio Éireann), begins broadcasting.
- January 1, Turkey switches to the Gregorian Calender after reforms set by Kamal Ataturk
- January 8 - Abdul-Aziz ibn Saud becomes the King of Hejaz
- January 12 - Freeman Gosden and Charles Correll premiere their radio program Sam 'n' Henry, in which the two white performers portrayed two black characters from Harlem looking for extra money during the Depression. It was a precursor to Gosden and Correll's more popular later program, Amos 'n' Andy.
- January 16 – BBC radio play about worker's revolution causes a panic in London
- January 26 - John Logie Baird demonstrates a mechanical television system.
- January 31 - British and Belgian troops leave Cologne
- February 9 - Flooding on London suburbs
- February 12 - Irish minister for Justice, Kevin O'Higgins, appoints the Committee on Evil Literature
- March 6 - The Shakespeare Memorial Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon is destroyed by fire
- March 16 - Robert Goddard launches the first liquid-fueled rocket, at Auburn, Massachusetts
- April 7 - Failed assassination attempt against Mussolini
- April 12 - By a vote of 45 to 41, the United States Senate unseats Iowa Senator Smith W. Brookhart and seats Daniel F. Steck, after Brookhart had already served for over one year.
- April 16 - Train crash in San Jose, Costa Rica - 178 dead
- April 21 - Princess Elizabeth born in London
- April 25 - Reza Khan is crowned Shah of Iran under the name "Pahlevi."
- May 1 - Coal miner's strike begins in Britain
- May 3 - General strike begins in support of the coal strike
- May 9 - Martial law in Britain because of the general strike
- May 9 - French navy bombards Damascus because of Druze riots
- May 9 - Admiral Richard E. Byrd and Floyd Bennett claim to have flown over the North Pole (later discovery of his diary seems to indicate that this did not happen).
- May 10 - Talks between government and strikers begins in UK
- May 12 - March 15 - Military coup by Jozef Pilsudski succeeds in Poland
- May 12 - UK general strike called off
- May 12 - Roald Amundsen flies over north pole
- May 12 - UK General Strike 1926: In the United Kingdom, a general strike by trade unions ends (the strike began on May 3).
- May 18 - Evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson disappears while visiting a Venice, California beach.
- May 26 - Rifkabyl rebels surrender in Morocco
- May 28 - Military coup by Manuel Gomes da Costa in Portugal
- June 4 - Ignacy Moscicki becomes president of Poland
- June 29 - Arthur Meighen returns to office as Prime Minister of Canada.
- July 1 - Kuomingtang begins a campaign in the northern China for unification
- July 9 - New military coup in Portugal, now by general Antonio Carmona
- July 12 - Lightning strike destroys an ammunition depot in Dover, New Jersey
- July 15 - BEST buses make its début in Mumbai.
- July 23 - Fox Film buys the patents of the Movietone sound system for recording sound onto film.
- August 1 - Failed assassination attempt against Miguel Primo de Rivera in Barcelona
- August 6 - Gertrude Ederle becomes the first woman to swim the English Channel from France to England
- August 6 - In New York, the Warner Brothers' Vitaphone system premieres with the movie Don Juan starring John Barrymore.
- August 18 - British miner's union begins negotiations with the government
- August 18 - A weather map is televised for the first time, sent from NAA Arlington to the Weather Bureau Office in Washington, D.C.
- August 22 - In Greece, Georgios Konfylis ousts Theodoros Pangalos
- August 25 - Pavlos Konduriotis announces that dictatorship is finished in Greece and becomes a president
- September 11 - Spain leaves the League of Nations
- September 11 - Aloha Tower is officially dedicated at Honolulu Harbor in the Territory of Hawai'i
- September 18 - Great Miami Hurricane: A strong hurricane devastates Miami, Florida, leaving over 100 dead and caused several hundred million dollars in damage; equal to nearly $100 billion dollars today.
- September 20 - Twelve cars full of gangsters open fire at the Hawthorne Inn, headquarters of Al Capone in Chicago. Only one of Capone's men is wounded
- September 25 - William Lyon Mackenzie King returns to office as Prime Minister of Canada.
- October 2 - Jozef Pilsudski becomes prime minister of Poland
- October 12 - British miners agree to end their strike
- October 20 - Hurricane kills 650 in Cuba
- October 23 - Decree in Italy bans women from holding public office
- October 31 - Magician Harry Houdini dies of gangrene and peritonitis that developed after his appendix ruptured.
- November 10 - In San Francisco, California, a necrophiliac serial killer named Earle Nelson (dubbed "Gorilla Man") kills and then rapes his 9th victim, a boardinghouse landlady named Mrs. William Edmonds.
- November 10 - Michinomiya Hirohito is crowned the 124th Emperor of Japan
- November 15 - The NBC radio network opens with 24 stations (it was formed by Westinghouse, General Electric and RCA).
- November 24 - The village of Rocquebillier in French Riviera is almost destroyed in a massive hail
- November 25 - Death penalty re-established in Italy
- November 27 - Vesuvius erupts
- November 27 - In Williamsburg, Virginia, the restoration of Colonial Williamsburg begins.
- December 2 - British prime minister Stanley Baldwin ends the martial law that had been declared due to general strike
- December 3 - Agatha Christie disappears from her home in Surrey; on December 14 she is found in Harrogate hotel
- December 18 - Turkey converted to Gregorian calendar making 'tomorrow' January 1 1927
- December 25 - In Japanese History, end of the Taishō period and beginning of the Shōwa era and the period of Japanese expansionism
- League of Nations Slavery Convention abolishes all types of slavery.
- Afghanistan declares monarchy.
- Lebanon becomes a republic.
- Eamon de Valera organizes Fianna Fáil.
- The short-lived Western Australian Secession League is founded.
- International African Institute is founded.
- January 3 - George Martin, English producer of The Beatles
- January 8 - Evelyn Lear, American soprano
- January 8 - Hanae Mori, Japanese fashion designer
- January 8 - Soupy Sales, American comedian
- January 11 - Lev Demin, cosmonaut (d. 1998)
- January 12 - Ray Price, American singer
- January 14 - Maria Schell, Austrian actress (d. 2005)
- January 14 - Tom Tryon, American actor and novelist (d. 1991)
- January 17 - Moira Shearer, Scottish actress and dancer
- January 19 - Fritz Weaver, American actor
- January 20 - Patricia Neal, American actress
- January 20 - David Tudor, American pianist and composer (d. 1996)
- January 21 - Steve Reeves, American actor (d. 2000)
- January 27 - Fritz Spiegl, Austrian journalist (d. 2003)
- January 29 - Abdus Salam, Pakistani physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1996)
- February 2 - Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, President of France
- February 6 - Haskell Wexler, American cinematographer
- February 7 - Konstantin Feoktistov, cosmonaut
- February 8 - Neal Cassady, American writer (d. 1968)
- February 8 - Audrey Meadows, American actress (d. 1996)
- February 11 - Paul Bocuse, French chef
- February 11 - Alexander Gibson, British conductor and founder of the Scottish Opera
- February 11 - Leslie Nielsen, Canadian actor
- February 12 - Paul Kurtz, American philosopher
- February 16 - John Schlesinger, British film director (d. 2003)
- February 20 - Richard Matheson, American author
- February 20 - Bob Richards, American track and field athlete
- February 22 - Kenneth Williams, English actor (d. 1988)
- February 28 - Svetlana Alliluyeva, Russian author
- March 1 - Pete Rozelle, American commissioner of the National Football League (d. 1996)
- March 2 - Murray Rothbard, American economist (d. 1995)
- March 3 - James Merrill, American poet (d. 1995)
- March 6 - Alan Greenspan, American economist and Chairman of the Federal Reserve
- March 6 - Andrzej Wajda, Polish film director
- March 8 - Sultan Salahuddin (d. 2001)
- March 13 - Carlos Roberto Reina, President of Honduras (d. 2003)
- March 15 - Norm Van Brocklin, American football player (d. 1983)
- March 16 - Jerry Lewis, American comedian
- March 16 - Charles Goodell, American politician (d. 1987)
- March 17 - Siegfried Lenz, German writer
- March 18 - Peter Graves, American actor
- March 24 - Dario Fo, Italian author, Nobel Prize laureate
- March 30 - Ingvar Kamprad, Swedish businessman
- March 31 - John Fowles, English writer (d. 2005)
- April 1 - Charles Bressler, American tenor
- April 1 - Anne McCaffrey, American author
- April 2 - Jack Brabham, Australian race car driver
- April 3 - Gus Grissom, astronaut (d. 1967)
- April 6 - Sergio Franchi, Italian tenor and actor (d. 1990)
- April 6 - Gil Kane, Latvian-born cartoonist (d. 2000)
- April 6 - Ian Paisley, British politician
- April 7 - Dame Joan Sutherland, Australian soprano
- April 9 - Hugh Hefner, American magazine editor
- April 17 - Gerry McNeil, Canadian hockey player (d. 2004)
- April 21 - Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom
- April 22 - James Stirling, Scottish architect (d. 1992)
- April 24 - Thorbjörn Fälldin, Prime Minister of Sweden
- April 26 - Michael Mathias Prechtl, German illustrator (d. 2003)
- April 30 - Cloris Leachman, American actress
- May 5 - Ann B. Davis, American actress
- May 8 - Don Rickles, American comedian and actor
- May 15 - Peter Shaffer, English playwright
- May 26 - Miles Davis, American jazz trumpeter (d. 1991)
- June 1 - Andy Griffith, American actor
- June 1 - Marilyn Monroe, American actress (d. 1962)
- June 3 - Allen Ginsberg, American poet (d. 1997)
- June 6 - Klaus Tennstedt, German conductor (d. 1998)
- June 11 - Frank Plicka, Czech-born photographer
- June 21 - Conrad Hall, Tahitian-born cinematographer (d. 2003)
- June 25 - Ingeborg Bachmann, Austrian writer (d. 1973)
- June 28 - Mel Brooks, American entertainer
- June 30 - Paul Berg, American chemist, Noble Prize laureate
- July 1 - Robert Fogel, American economist, Nobel Prize laureate
- July 1 - Hans Werner Henze, German composer
- July 4 - Alfredo Di Stefano, Argentine-born footballer
- July 8 - Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, Swiss-born psychiatrist (d. 2004)
- July 9 - Ben Roy Mottelson, American-born physicist, Nobel Prize laureate
- July 15 - Leopoldo Galtieri, Argentine dictator (d. 2003)
- July 16 - Stanley Clements, American actor (d. 1981)
- July 16 - Irwin Rose, American biologist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry
- July 28 - Walt Brown, American Presidential candidate
- August 3 - Tony Bennett, American singer
- August 3 - Anthony Sampson, British journalist and biographer (d. 2004)
- August 11 - Aaron Klug, Lithuanian-born chemist, Nobel Prize laureate
- August 14 - René Goscinny, French comic book writer (d. 1977)
- August 19 - Arthur Rock, American venture capitalist
- September 7 - Don Messick, American voice actor (d. 1997)
- September 15 - Jean-Pierre Serre, French mathematician
- September 16- John Knowles, American author (d. 2001)
- September 21 - Donald A. Glaser, American physicist, Nobel Prize laureate
- September 21 - Noor Jehan, Pakistani and Indian actress (she could have been born in 1929)
- September 23 - John Coltrane, American jazz saxophonist (d. 1967)
- September 26 - Masatoshi Koshiba, Japanese physicist, Nobel Prize laureate
- October 15 - Michel Foucault, French philosopher (d. 1984)
- October 15 - Karl Richter, German conductor (d. 1981)
- October 18 - Chuck Berry, American musician
- October 25 - Galina Vishnevskaya, Russian soprano
- October 29 - Jon Vickers, Canadian tenor
- November 2 - Tsung-Dao Lee, Chinese physicist, Nobel Prize laureate
- November 3 - Valdas Adamkus, President of Lithuania
- November 23 - Sri Satya Sai Baba, Spritual leader
- November 23 - R.L. Burnside, American musician
- November 25 - Poul Anderson, American author (d. 2001)
- December 9 - Henry Way Kendall, American physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1999)
- December 13 - George Rhoden, Jamaican athlete
- December 16 - James McCracken, American tenor (d. 1988)
- December 17 - Allan V. Cox, American geologist (d. 1987)
- December 20 - Sir Geoffrey Howe, British politician
- December 21 - Joe Paterno, American football coach
- December 23 - Robert Bly, American poet
- February 21 - Heike Kamerlingh Onnes, Dutch physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1853)
- March 5 - Clément Ader, French engineer and inventor, airplane pioneer (b. 1841)
- April 30 - Bessie Coleman, American pilot (b. 1892)
- May 16 - Mehmed VI, last Ottoman Sultan (b. 1861)
- May 26 - Simon Petlyura, Ukrainian independence fighter (b. 1879)
- June 10 - Antoni Gaudí, Catalan architect (b. 1852)
- June 14 - Mary Cassatt, American artist (b. 1844)
- July 12 - Gertrude Bell, English archaeologist, writer, spy, and administrator known as the "Uncrowned Queen of Iraq" (b. 1868)
- July 26 - Robert Todd Lincoln, American statesman and businessman (b. 1843)
- August 22 - Charles W. Eliot, President of Harvard University (b. 1834)
- August 23 - Rodolfo Valentino, Italian actor (b. 1895)
- September 15 - Rudolf Christoph Eucken, German writer, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1846)
- September 21 - Leon Charles Thevenin, French telegraph engineer (b. 1857)
- October 20 - Eugene V. Debs, American labor and political leader (b. 1855)
- October 31 - Harry Houdini, Hungarian-born magician (b. 1874)
- October 31 - Charles Vance Millar, Canadian businessman (b. 1853)
- December 4 - Ivana Kobilca, Slovenian painter (b. 1861)
- December 5 - Claude Monet, French painter (b. 1840)
- December 25 - Emperor Taisho, 123rd Emperor of Japan (b. 1879)
- December 29 - Rainer Maria Rilke, Austrian poet (b. 1875)
- Physics - Jean Baptiste Perrin
- Chemistry - Theodor Svedberg
- Medicine - Johannes Andreas Grib Fibiger
- Literature - Grazia Deledda
- Peace - Aristide Briand, Gustav Stresemann
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