Famous People Who Died In 1938

Discover the most famous people died who died in the year 1938. This list includes people like Robert Johnson, Muhammad Iqbal, Clarence Darrow, Jane Toppan, Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay and many more. This list of celebrities is loosely sorted by popularity. People featured on this list, include political leaders, journalists, poets and philosophers who died in 1938. This list includes people from United States, Russia, Germany & France and many more countries.
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 1 
Mustafa Kemal Ataturk
(Founder of the Republic of Turkey,)
Mustafa Kemal Ataturk
62
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: May 19, 1881
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Thessaloniki
Died: November 10
Kemal Atatürk, known as the founding father of the Republic of Turkey, was its first president. He unified Turkey into a secular country and invested in education and women’s rights. He also popularized the Latin-based Turkish alphabet and made minorities speak Turkish in public. His policies are known as “Kemalism.” 
 2 
Robert Johnson
30
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: May 8, 1911
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Hazlehurst, Mississippi, United States
Died: August 16

Singer and guitarist Robert Johnson is remembered as a Delta blues legend. Lack of proper documentation of his early life led to various legends surrounding him, such as one that claimed he had made a deal with the Devil to excel in music. He also inspired an award-winning biography. 

 3 
Muhammad Iqbal
(One of the Most Important Figures in Urdu and Persian Literature)
Muhammad Iqbal
36
Birthdate: November 9, 1877
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Sialkot, Pakistan
Died: April 21

Muhammad Iqbal was a Scholar, poet, and politician. Born in British India (present-day Pakistan), Iqbal's poetry in Persian and Urdu languages is regarded as one of the greatest of the modern era. Also an influential politician, Muhammad Iqbal's vision of an independent Muslim state helped inspire the creation of Pakistan where he is recognized as the national poet.

 4 
Thomas Clayton Wolfe
(An Important Writer in Modern American Literature and One of the First Masters of Autobiographical Fiction)
Thomas Clayton Wolfe
7
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: October 3, 1900
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Asheville, North Carolina, United States
Died: September 15
Novelist Thomas Wolfe is remembered for his novels Look Homeward, Angel and Of Time and the River. He had also authored countless short stories and plays. His signature style included elements of autobiographical writing mixed with poetic and lyrical prose. His works influenced Beat Generation writers, too.
 5 
Clarence Darrow
7
Listed In: Lawyers & Judges
Birthdate: April 18, 1857
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Kinsman Township
Died: March 13
 6 
Marie of Romania
(Wife of Ferdinand I of Romania and Former Queen Consort of Romania (1914 - 1927))
Marie of Romania
5
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: October 29, 1875
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Eastwell Park, Kent, England
Died: July 10

Marie of Romania was a descendant of Queen Victoria and born as the Princess of Edinburgh, before she married King Ferdinand I and became the last queen of Romania. A visual artist and a patron of the Art Nouveau movement, she was also a skilled equestrian and driver.

 7 
Konstantin Stanislavski
(Co-founder of ‘Moscow Art Theatre’ and Developer of Stanislavski's System of Acting)
Konstantin Stanislavski
1
Birthdate: January 17, 1863
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Died: August 7

Legendary Soviet and Russian theatre-practitioner Konstantin Stanislavski, who played an instrumental role in promoting new Russian drama of his time, is best-known for co-founding the world-renowned Moscow Art Theatre and developing the Stanislavski's system of training and preparing actors. Sergeyevich was considered one of the prominent theatre directors of his day and also earned repute as a remarkable character actor.

 8 
Typhoid Mary
(The First Person to be Identified as an Asymptomatic Carrier of the Pathogenic Bacteria 'Salmonella Typhi')
Typhoid Mary
14
Listed In: Food Experts
Birthdate: September 23, 1869
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Cookstown, County Tyrone, Ireland
Died: November 11

Irish immigrant Mary Mallon, or Typhoid Mary, worked as a cook in affluent American households. When people started falling ill in and around places where Mary had worked, it was discovered that she was an asymptomatic carrier of typhoid. Escaping every time, she caused three deaths and was eventually forcibly isolated.

James Weldon Johnson
8
Listed In: Activists
Birthdate: June 17, 1871
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Jacksonville, Florida, United States
Died: June 26
 10 
George Mountbatten, 2nd Marquess of Milford Haven
(Military Leader)
George Mountbatten, 2nd Marquess of Milford Haven
2
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: December 6, 1892
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: New Palace, Darmstadt, Grand Duchy of Hesse, Germany
Died: April 8
 11 
Faustyna Kowalska
(Polish Catholic Religious Sister and Mystic)
Faustyna Kowalska
7
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: August 25, 1905
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Głogowiec, Poland
Died: October 5

Polish Catholic nun Faustyna Kowalska is remembered for her diary, which recorded her multiple visions of Jesus and was later published. She later got an artist to paint the Image of the Divine Mercy, based on her visions. Known as the Apostle of Divine Mercy, she was canonized as a saint in 2000.

 12 
Maud of Wales
( Queen of Norway as the Wife of King Haakon VII)
Maud of Wales
7
Birthdate: November 26, 1869
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: London, England, United Kingdom
Died: November 20

Daughter of King Edward VII of Norway, Maud of Wales, was known for being a tomboy and had even been nicknamed Harry, after a valiant admiral. She married Prince Carl of Denmark. After Carl took over as King Haakon VII of Norway, Maud became the queen of Norway, too.

 13 
Ernst Ludwig Kirchner
(German Expressionist Painter and Printmaker Who was One of the Founders of the Artists Group 'Die Brücke')
Ernst Ludwig Kirchner
4
Birthdate: May 6, 1880
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Aschaffenburg, Germany
Died: June 15

One of the pioneers of Expressionism, German painter Ernst Ludwig Kirchner co-established the artists’ group Die Brücke, or The Bridge. His iconic works such as Girl under Japanese Umbrella and Street, Berlin displayed psychological and erotic themes. Declared a "degenerate" by the Nazis, he later committed suicide.

 14 
Grey Owl
(Writer, Novelist)
Grey Owl
2
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: September 18, 1888
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Hastings
Died: April 13
 15 
Suzanne Valadon
(Painter)
Suzanne Valadon
1
Birthdate: September 23, 1865
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Bessines-sur-Gartempe, France
Died: April 7
Height: 5'0" (152 cm)
 16 
King Oliver
(Musician)
King Oliver
0
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: December 19, 1881
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Aben, Louisiana, United States
Died: April 10
 17 
Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay
(Indian Novelist and Short Story Writer of the Early 20th Century)
Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay
21
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: September 15, 1876
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Debanandapur, Bandel, India
Died: January 16

Iconic Bengali author Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay is best known for his works such as Devdas, Srikanta, and Parineeta, many of which have been made into films. Born into a poverty-stricken family, he found solace in literature and began writing in his teens. He was a prominent figure of the Bengali Renaissance.

 18 
Hans Christian Gram
(Danish Bacteriologist)
Hans Christian Gram
2
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: September 13, 1853
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Copenhagen, Denmark
Died: November 14

Hans Christian Gram was a Danish bacteriologist best remembered for developing a technique called Gram stain, which is still used today to classify bacteria. He achieved international recognition after developing the Gram stain technique. Hans Christian Gram also served as a professor at the University of Copenhagen.

 19 
Corneliu Zelea Codreanu
(Romanian Politician & Founder and Leader of the Legionary Movement (Iron Guard))
Corneliu Zelea Codreanu
4
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: September 13, 1899
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Huși, Romania
Died: November 30

Romanian far-right politician Corneliu Zelea Codreanu founded the anti-Semitic and fascist movement called Iron Guard, also known as the Legionary Movement. While the movement turned into a successful political party, it was crushed by King Carol II, while Codreanu was imprisoned and then shot to death while escaping.

 20 
Warner Oland
(Actor)
Warner Oland
1
Birthdate: October 3, 1879
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Bjurholm Municipality, Sweden
Died: August 6
Height: 5'11" (180 cm)
 21 
Harvey Samuel Firestone
(Entrepreneur)
Harvey Samuel Firestone
1
Listed In:
Birthdate: December 20, 1868
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Columbiana
Died: February 7
 22 
Georges Méliès
(One of the First Filmmakers to Use Storyboards & Fictional Narratives in Movies)
Georges Méliès
3
Birthdate: December 8, 1861
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: January 21

Initially a professional illusionist and later a film director, Georges Méliès became interested in motion pictures after watching the first real film made by Lumière brothers. Realizing the potential of film-making as an art, he soon started experimenting, making technical and narrative developments. Among the 400 films he made were Christ Walking on Water, A Trip to the Moon etc

 23 
Prince Nicholas of Greece and Denmark
(Prince)
Prince Nicholas of Greece and Denmark
3
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: January 22, 1872
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Athens, Greece
Died: February 8

Prince Nicholas of Greece and Denmark was the son of Queen Olga and George I of Greece. A talented painter, Nicholas was nicknamed Greek Nicky within the royal family to tell him apart from his cousin Nicholas II. In 1896, Prince Nicholas helped organize the Summer Olympics. He was godfather to George Simitis' son and future Prime Minister Kostas Simitis.

 24 
Alma Gluck
(Romanian-American Opera Singer Who Was the First Musician to Sell a Million Record Copies)
Alma Gluck
3
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: May 11, 1884
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ias,i, Bucharest, Romania
Died: October 27

Initially a stenographer, Romanian-born American opera singer Reba Fiersohn, better known as Alma Gluck, started her music career after her marriage and soon found success with her performances at the Metropolitan Opera. She scripted history by scoring the first million-selling phonograph record and also co-founded the American Woman's Association.

 25 
Joseph Strauss
(American Structural Engineer Who Revolutionized the Design of 'Bascule Bridges')
Joseph Strauss
3
Listed In: Engineers
Birthdate: January 9, 1870
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
Died: May 16

Best known for designing the Golden Gate Bridge, engineer Joseph Strauss specialized in movable bridges and developed the concepts of the bascule bridge and the vertical-lift bridge. Born to a pianist mother and a painter-writer father, he later also penned poems such as The Mighty Task is Done.

 26 
Reginald Johnston
(Commissioner of Weihaiwei (1927–1930) ,Former diplomat who served as the tutor and advisor to Puyi, the last Emperor of China)
Reginald Johnston
0
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: October 13, 1874
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Edinburgh, Scotland
Died: March 6
 27 
Benjamin Cardozo
(Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from 1932 to 1938)
Benjamin Cardozo
1
Listed In: Lawyers & Judges
Birthdate: May 24, 1870
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: July 9

American lawyer Benjamin Cardozo had served as the Associate Justice of the US Supreme Court. More of a liberal, he supported the modification of existing legal principles to make them more modern. He is remembered for his mild-mannered nature and for his contribution to the American common law.

 28 
Max Factor Sr.
(American makeup designer)
Max Factor Sr.
2
Birthdate: September 15, 1877
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Łódź, Poland
Died: August 30

Known for his pioneering contribution to the make-up industry in Hollywood and for his revolutionary products such as Supreme Greasepaint, Max Factor Sr. was a Polish Jew, who moved to the US in the early 1900s. He founded his own brand of cosmetics, popularized the word “make-up,” and won an honorary Academy Award.

 29 
Alfonsina Storni
(Argentine Poet and Playwright of the Modernist Period)
Alfonsina Storni
2
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: May 29, 1892
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Sala Capriasca, Switzerland
Died: October 25

Alfonsina Storni was an Argentine playwright and poet of the modernist period. She was one of the first women to find success in the Argentine literature and theater scene, which were dominated by men. Her literary works not only inspired her readers but also inspired other writers. 

 30 
Pearl White
(Actress)
Pearl White
4
Birthdate: March 4, 1889
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Green Ridge
Died: August 4
 31 
Gabriele D'Annunzio
(Former Member of Italian Chamber of Deputies (1897-1900))
Gabriele D'Annunzio
1
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: March 12, 1863
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Pescara, Italy
Died: March 1

Known for literary works like Il Piacere and La Gioconda, Italian journalist, poet and playwright Gabriele D'Annunzio dominated the second period of Italian Decadentism. He became a national war hero during the First World War. His political endeavours include establishing and leading the short-lived Italian Regency of Carnaro in Fiume. He is often described as the forerunner of Italian fascism.  

 32 
Jigoro Kano
(Japanese Educator, Athlete, and the Founder of Judo)
Jigoro Kano
4
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: December 10, 1860
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Hyogo, Japan
Died: May 4

Legendary Japanese athlete Jigoro Kano is remembered as the founder of judo. A fine educator, he had also had a 23-year stint as the principal of 2 schools, which later became the University of Tsukuba. He was also the first Asian to be part of the International Olympic Committee.

 33 
Edmund Husserl
(German Philosopher, Mathematician and Founder of Phenomenology)
Edmund Husserl
6
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: April 8, 1859
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Prostějov, Czechia
Died: April 27

Edmund Husserl was a German philosopher of Moravian origin. He established the school of phenomenology. He studied mathematics, physics, and astronomy at the University of Leipzig and worked as an assistant to mathematician Karl Weierstrass. He later became a professor of philosophy and taught for several years. He is considered a major figure in 20th-century philosophy.  

 34 
Lady Ottoline Morrell
(Writer)
Lady Ottoline Morrell
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: June 16, 1873
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Tunbridge Wells, Kent, England
Died: April 21
 35 
Suzanne Lenglen
(French Tennis Player)
Suzanne Lenglen
4
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: May 24, 1899
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: July 4
Height: 5'6" (168 cm)
 36 
Lev Shestov
(Former existentialist and religious philosopher best known for his critiques of both philosophic rationalism and scientism)
Lev Shestov
1
Birthdate: February 12, 1866
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Kyiv, Ukraine
Died: November 19
 37 
Isabelo de los Reyes
(Co-Founder of the Philippine Independent Church 'Iglesia Filipina Independiente')
Isabelo de los Reyes
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: July 7, 1864
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Vigan
Died: October 10

Isabelo de los Reyes, also known as Don Belong, was a prominent Filipino politician and activist who co-founded the independent Philippine church Iglesia Filipina Independiente. A labor leader and author, too, he served as the senator of the Philippines. He also wrote extensively on folklore, religion, and history.

 38 
Samuel Insull
(Business Magnate)
Samuel Insull
1
Listed In: Business People
Birthdate: November 11, 1859
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: London, England, United Kingdom
Died: July 16
 39 
Karel Čapek
(Czech Writer and Playwright Who is Best Known for His Science Fiction)
Karel Čapek
2
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: January 9, 1890
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Malé Svatoňovice, Czechia
Died: December 25

Karel Čapek was a Czech writer, critic, and playwright. He is best remembered for his science fiction work, including his play Rossum's Universal Robots and his novel War with the Newts. Credited with introducing the word robot, Karel Čapek's works were celebrated after World War II. He was also nominated for the prestigious Nobel Prize in Literature on seven occasions.

 40 
Leopold Godowsky
(Virtuoso Pianist, Composer and Teacher, Termed as ‘Buddha of the Piano’ by Famous Musicians)
Leopold Godowsky
0
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: February 13, 1870
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Soshly, Lithuania
Died: November 21

Leopold Godowsky was a renowned Polish-born American pianist, composer and teacher counted among the most highly regarded performers of his day. Notable works of the virtuoso, who was reputed for his remarkable piano technique, includes his compositions like Java SuiteWalzermasken, Passacaglia and Triakontameron; and 53 Studies on Chopin's Études, a set of 53 arrangements of Études by Frédéric Chopin.  

 41 
Ynes Mexia
(Mexican-American Botanist Best Known For Her Large Collection of Plants)
Ynes Mexia
0
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: May 24, 1870
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Washington, D.C., United States
Died: July 12

Ynes Mexia was a Mexican-American botanist best remembered for her large collection of specimens of plants and flora originating from the sites of Mexico, Peru, and Colombia. She collected more than 150,000 specimens over a period of 16 years, during which she encountered various challenges, including dangerous terrain, poisonous berries, earthquakes, and bogs. 

 42 
Frigyes Karinthy
(Author)
Frigyes Karinthy
1
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: June 25, 1887
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Budapest, Hungary
Died: August 29

Hungarian author Frigyes Karinthy was the first to state the concept of six degrees of separation, in his short story Chains. Initially a journalist, he later mastered the short story format and also penned novels such as Voyage to Faremido. He also wrote the script for the film The Stork Caliph.

 43 
Ödön von Horváth
(Writer)
Ödön von Horváth
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: December 9, 1901
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Rijeka, Croatia
Died: June 1

Born to an Austro-Hungarian diplomat, Ödön von Horváth grew up studying in Hungarian but later became one of the finest writers of German literature. The writer of iconic plays such as Italian Night and Tales from the Vienna Woods, he was a significant anti-fascist playwright. He died in a thunderstorm.

 44 
Octavian Goga
(37th Prime Minister of Romania (1937 - 1938))
Octavian Goga
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: April 1, 1881
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Rășinari, Sibiu County, Romania
Died: May 7

Right-wing Romanian politician Octavian Goga was a significant part of the Romanian nationalistic movement and the Romanian National Party. He later formed the National Christian Party and led Romania as its prime minister. He was a talented poet, playwright, and journalist, too, and penned works such as The Olt River.

 45 
Valery Chkalov
(Test Pilot Who Was Awarded the Title Hero of the Soviet Union (1936))
Valery Chkalov
0
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: February 2, 1904
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Chkalovsk, Russia
Died: December 15
 46 
Robert Wiene
(German Film Director, Screenwriter and Producer)
Robert Wiene
0
Birthdate: April 27, 1873
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Wrocław, Poland
Died: July 17
 47 
Charles Édouard Guillaume
(Discoverer of Invar and Elinvar)
Charles Édouard Guillaume
0
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: February 15, 1861
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Fleurier
Died: May 13

Born in Switzerland, Charles Édouard Guillaume grew up to win the Nobel Prize in Physics for his discovery of the nickel-steel alloys invar and elinva. He also served the International Bureau of Weights and Measures as its director, while his research covered horology and space radiation, too.

 48 
Branislav Nušić
(Playwright)
Branislav Nušić
1
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: October 20, 1864
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Belgrade
Died: January 19
 49 
William Glackens
(American Painter)
William Glackens
0
Birthdate: March 13, 1870
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: May 22
 50 
Bruno Taut
(Expressionist architect who became known for the Glass Pavilion at the Cologne Werkbund Exhibition of 1914)
Bruno Taut
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: May 4, 1880
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Konigsberg, Germany
Died: December 24