October 16, 1813
Beginning of the Battle of Leipzig (through October 19). The Battle of Leipzig was one of the decisive battles against Napoleon. Napoleon had retreated from Moscow and would be defeated at Waterloo by Wellington and Blücher.
October 16, 1854
Birth of Karl Kautsky in Prague, Austrian Empire (now in the Czech Republic). Kautsky studied at the University of Vienna and there joined the Social Democratic Party. He was a close friend of Friedrich Engels. He the primary author of the Erfurt Program which oriented the party to an evolutionary variety of Marxism.
October 16, 1927
Birth of Günter Grass in Danzig, Germany (now in Poland). Grass is doubtlessly the most known of Germany’s living novelists. After WWII he was a member of the literary association , Gruppe 47. Die Blechtrommel appeared in 1959, Katz und Maus in 1961, Hundejahre in 1963, Örtlich betäubt in 1969, Der Butt in 1977, Unkenrufe in 1992 and Ein weites Feld in 1995. The film version of Die Blechtrommel won an Academy Award in the United States.
October 16, 1946
Joachim von Ribbentrop (as well as a number of other Nazi leaders), Nazi foreign minister, is executed in Nürnberg, Germany by the War Crimes Commission. He had met Hitler and joined the Nazi Party in 1932. In 1935 he negotiated the agreement with Great Britain which allowed the building of a German navy (disallowed by the Versailles Treaty). In 1939 he negotiated the non aggression pact with the Soviet Union. He was tried by the Nürnberg court after the war, found guilty of war crimes and hanged. While in prison he wrote his memoirs, Zwischen London und Moskau.
October 16, 1963
Election of Ludwig Erhard as Chancellor.
October 16, 1973
Henry Kissinger, an immigrant from Germany, wins the Nobel Peace Prize.
October 16, 1994
The Federal Republic of Germany holds parliamentary elections. The CDU/CSU gets 41.4% of the vote, the SPD 36.4%, the FDP 6.9%, the Green Party 7.3%. The CDU/CSU-FDP coalition continues. Helmut Kohl (CDU) continues as chancellor.