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This Day in Pop Culture for December 21

Crossword Puzzle

1913: The First Crossword Puzzle

Arthur Wynne was born in 1871 in Liverpool England where his father served as the editor of the local Liverpool Mercury newspaper. In 1891, he immigrated to the United States living in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where he began to work for the Pittsburgh Press. In 1913, while working for New York World, he began creating games for the newspaper’s “Fun” section. On this day, he published a “Word Cross Puzzle” which is credited for being the first crossword puzzle. However, the design was set in a diamond shape instead of the customary square. A few weeks after the first puzzle was printed, a second one was published, but there was a typesetting error which named it a “Cross-Word” puzzle. From then on out, his puzzle were knowns as “Crossword Puzzles.”


  • 1937: Jane Fonda (actress)
  • 1940: Frank Zappa (singer)
  • 1948: Samuel L. Jackson (actor)
  • 1950: Jeffrey Katzenberg (film producer)
  • 1954: Chris Evert (tennis player)
  • 1957: Ray Romano (actor)
  • 1959: Florence Griffith Joyner (Olympic sprinter)
  • 1965: Andy Dick (actor)
  • 1966: Kiefer Sutherland (actor)

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Jeffrey Totey View All

I write about pop culture, arts and entertainment in the greater Seattle area.

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