1847 – Annie Besant, important British writer, editor, social reformer, philosopher, women’s rights activist, orator, and supporter of Irish and Indian self-rule; she was put on trial for obscenity (and acquitted) after publishing a pamphlet on birth control.
1893 – Faith Baldwin, popular American author of romance fiction who published more than 100 novels, often focusing on women juggling career and family; many of her books were made into popular movies.
1899 – Ernest Haycox, American author of western fiction.
1911 – Fletcher Knebel, American author of popular political fiction.
1914 – Daniel J. Boorstin, Pulitzer Prize-winning American historian who served as Librarian of Congress.
1914 – Donald Allen Wollheim, science-fiction author, editor, publisher, and fan who has written under his own name and several pseudonyms, including David Grinnell.
1919 – Majrooh Sultanpuri (Asrar Hussain Khan), Indian poet who writes in Urdu, and Bollywood film lyricist.
1920 – David Herbert Donald, American historian, Lincoln biographer, and two-time Pulitzer winner.
1924 – Jimmy Carter (full name James Earl Carter, Jr.), Nobel Prize-winning American politician and U.S. President who has written 23 books on topics that include humanitarian work, aging, religion, and human rights; he has also written memoir, poetry, and a children’s book (illustrated by his daughter Amy).
1928 – Zhu Rongji, prominent Chinese politician who was mayor of Shanghai and Premier of the People’s Republic of China, and has written several books since retiring from office; he is also known as a philanthropist, and once acted in an opera.
1935 – Julie (Andrews) Edwards, children’s book author who is better known (using her maiden name, Andrews) as the iconic actress and singer who starred in The Sound of Music and Mary Poppins; her books are written as Julie Edwards and include the beloved novel, Mandy.
1940 – Michael Gruber, American author and ghostwriter who also has written magazine articles on biology and a children’s book; he has a PhD in marine sciences, has studied octopus behavior, and has worked as a chef, a rock band roadie, a White House environmental policy expert, and a speechwriter.
1944 – Gay Courter, bestselling American screenwriter, author, and novelist.
1946 – Tim O’Brien, American journalist, novelist, memoirist, and professor, best known for writing about the Vietnam War.
1949 – Isaac Bonewits, American Druid who published books on Neopaganism and magic.
1955 – Debbie Ford, bestselling American author of self-help books.
1959 – Brian P. Cleary, American author of humorous books for children about grammar and math.