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1953 (MCMLIII) was a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar, the 1953rd year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 953rd year of the 2nd millennium, the 53rd year of the 20th century, and the 4th year of the 1950s decade.
- 1 Events
- 2 Births
- 3 Deaths
- 4 Nobel Prizes
- 5 References
- January 5 – Samuel Beckett's play Waiting for Godot has its first public stage première in French as En attendant Godot at the Théâtre de Babylone in Paris.
- January 6 – The Asian Socialist Conference opens in Rangoon, Burma.
- January 7 – United States President Harry S. Truman announces the United States has developed a hydrogen bomb.
- January 12 – Estonian émigrés found a government-in-exile in Oslo.
- January 13 – "Doctors' plot": The state newspaper Pravda publishes an article alleging that many of the most prestigious physicians in the Soviet Union, mostly Jews, are part of a major plot to poison the country's senior political and military leaders.
- January 14
- January 15 – Georg Dertinger, foreign minister of East Germany, is arrested for spying.
- January 19 – 71.1% of all television sets in the United States are tuned into I Love Lucy to watch Lucy give birth to Little Ricky, which is more people than those who tuned into Dwight Eisenhower's inauguration the next day. This record has yet to be broken.
- January 20 – Dwight D. Eisenhower is sworn in as the 34th President of the United States.
- January 22 – The Crucible, a drama by Arthur Miller, opens on Broadway.
- January 24
- January 28 – Derek Bentley is executed for murder at Wandsworth Prison in London.
- January 31–February 1 – The North Sea flood of 1953 kills 1,836 people in the southwestern Netherlands (especially Zeeland), 307 in the United Kingdom and several hundred at sea, including 133 on the ferry MV Princess Victoria in the Irish Sea.
- February 1 – The surge of the North Sea flood continues from the previous day.
- February 3 – Batepá massacre: Hundreds of native creoles known as forros are massacred in São Tomé by the colonial administration and Portuguese landowners.
- February 5 – Walt Disney's feature film Peter Pan premieres.
- February 11
- February 12 – The Nordic Council is inaugurated.
- February 13 – Transsexual Christine Jorgensen returns to New York after successful sex reassignment surgery in Denmark.
- February 16 – The Pakistan Academy of Sciences is established in Pakistan.
- February 19 – Georgia approves the first literature censorship board in the United States.
- February 25 – Release, in France, of Jacques Tati's film Les Vacances de M. Hulot, introducing the gauche character of Monsieur Hulot.
- February 28
- March 1
- Joseph Stalin suffers a stroke after an all-night dinner with Soviet Union interior minister Lavrentiy Beria and future premiers Georgi Malenkov, Nikolai Bulganin, and Nikita Khrushchev. The stroke paralyzes the right side of his body and renders him unconscious until his death on March 5.
- Bernard Freyberg, 1st Baron Freyberg is made deputy constable and lieutenant governor of Windsor Castle.
- March 6 – Georgy Maksimilianovich Malenkov succeeds Joseph Stalin as Premier and First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.
- March 8 – The Thieves World, which had been transformed into the Russian mafia, are freed from prisons by the Malenkov regime which ends the Bitch Wars.
- March 13 – The United Nations Security Council nominates Dag Hammarskjöld from Sweden as United Nations Secretary General.
- March 14 – Nikita Khrushchev is selected First Secretary of the Soviet Communist Party.
- March 17 – The first nuclear test of Operation Upshot–Knothole is conducted in Nevada, with 1,620 spectators at 3.4 km (2.1 mi).
- March 18 – The Yenice–Gönen earthquake affected western Turkey with a maximum Mercalli intensity of IX (Violent), causing at least 1,070 deaths and $3.57 million in damage.
- March 19 – The 25th Academy Awards ceremony is held (the first one broadcast on television).
- March 25–26 – Lari Massacre in Kenya: Mau Mau rebels kill up to 150 Kikuyu natives.
- March 26 – Jonas Salk announces his polio vaccine.
- March 29 – A fire at the Littlefield Nursing Home in Largo, Florida, kills 33 persons, including singer-songwriter Arthur Fields.
- April 7 – Dag Hammarskjöld is elected United Nations Secretary-General.
- April 8 – Jomo Kenyatta is sentenced to seven years in prison for the alleged organization of the Mau Mau Uprising.
- April 10 – The Melbourne Knights is founded as Croatia SC in Melbourne.
- April 13
- April 16
- President Eisenhower delivers his "Chance for Peace" speech to the National Association of Newspaper Editors.
- A four-story building in Chicago belonging to the Habar Corporation catches fire, killing 35 employees.
- April 17 – Mickey Mantle hits a 565-foot (172 m) home run at Griffith Stadium in Washington, D.C. Mantle's home run is believed to be the longest home run in baseball history by many historians.
- April 20 – Frank Sinatra and the arranger Nelson Riddle began their first recording sessions together at Capitol Records, which would result in some of the defining recordings of Sinatra's career.
- April 25 – Francis Crick and James Watson publish "Molecular Structure of Nucleic Acids: A Structure for Deoxyribose Nucleic Acid", their description of the double helix structure of DNA.
- May 2 – Hussein is crowned King of Jordan.
- May 5 – Aldous Huxley first tries the psychedelic hallucinogen, mescaline, inspiring his book The Doors of Perception.
- May 9 – France agrees to the provisional independence of Cambodia with King Norodom Sihanouk.
- May 10 – The town of Chemnitz in East Germany becomes Karl Marx Stadt.
- May 11 – The Waco tornado outbreak: A F5 tornado hits in the downtown section of Waco, Texas, killing 114.
- May 15 – The Standards And Recommended Practices (SARPS) for Aeronautical Information Service (AIS) were adopted by the ICAO Council. These SARPS are in Annex 15 to the Chicago Convention and 15 May is celebrated by the AIS community as “World AIS Day”.
- May 18 – At Rogers Dry Lake, Californian Jackie Cochran becomes the first woman to break the sound barrier (in a F-86 Sabrejet at an average speed of 652.337 miles-per-hour).
- May 25 – Nuclear testing: At the Nevada Test Site, the United States conducts its only nuclear artillery test: Upshot-Knothole Grable.
- May 29 – Sir Edmund Hillary from New Zealand and Tenzing Norgay from Nepal become the first men to reach the summit of Mount Everest.
- June 1 – Uprising in Plzeň: Currency reform causes riots in Czechoslovakia.
- June 2 – Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom at Westminster Abbey.
- June 7 – Italian general election: the Christian Democracy party wins a plurality in both legislative houses.
- June 7-9 – Flint–Worcester tornado outbreak sequence: A single storm-system spawns 46 tornadoes of various sizes, in ten states from Colorado to Massachusetts, over three days, killing 246.
- June 8
- June 9
- June 13 – Hungarian Prime Minister Mátyás Rákosi is replaced by Imre Nagy.
- June 16 – The Soviet Union and Yugoslavia open diplomatic relations.
- June 17 – Workers' Uprising in East Germany: The Soviet Union orders a division of troops into East Berlin to quell a rebellion.
- June 18
- Egypt declares itself a republic.
- Tachikawa air disaster: A United States Air Force Douglas C-124 Globemaster II crashes just after takeoff from Tachikawa Airfield near Tokyo, Japan, killing all 129 people on board in the worst air crash in history up to this time, and the first with a confirmed death toll exceeding 100.
- June 19
- June 30
- July 3 – First ascent of Nanga Parbat in the Pakistan Himalayas, the world's ninth highest mountain, is made by Austrian climber Hermann Buhl alone.
- July 4 – Strikes and riots hit coal mining regions in Poland.
- July 5 – The European Economic Community (EEC) holds its first assembly in Strasbourg, France.[dubious ]
- July 9 – The US Treasury formally renames the Bureau of Internal Revenue; the new name (which had previously been used informally) is the Internal Revenue Service.
- July 10 – The Soviet official newspaper Pravda announces that Lavrentiy Beria has been deposed as head of the NKVD.
- July 17 – The greatest recorded loss of United States midshipmen in a single event results from an aircraft crash near NAS Whiting Field.
- July 23 – Howard Hawks's musical film Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, starring Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell, is released by 20th Century Fox.
- July 26
- July 27 – The Korean War ends with the Korean Armistice Agreement: United Nations Command (Korea) (United States), People's Republic of China, North Korea sign an armistice agreement at Panmunjom and the north remains communist while the south remains capitalist.
- August 5 – Operation Big Switch: Prisoners of war are repatriated after the Korean War.
- August 8
- August 12
- August 13 – Four million workers go on strike in France to protest against austerity measures.
- August 17 – The first planning session of Narcotics Anonymous is held in Southern California (see October 5).
- August 18 – The second of the Kinsey Reports, Sexual Behavior in the Human Female, is published in the United States.
- August 19 – Cold War: The CIA helps to overthrow the government of Mohammad Mosaddegh in Iran, and retain Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi on the throne (see Operation Ajax).
- August 20
- August 25 – The general strike ends in France.
- September 4 – The discovery of REM sleep is first published by researchers Eugene Aserinsky and Nathaniel Kleitman.
- September 5 – The United Nations rejects the Soviet Union's suggestion to accept China as a member.
- September 7 – Nikita Khrushchev becomes head of the Soviet Central Committee.
- September 12 – U.S. Senator John Fitzgerald Kennedy marries Jacqueline Lee Bouvier at St. Mary's Church in Newport, Rhode Island.
- September 25 – The first German prisoners of war return from the Soviet Union to West Germany.
- September 26 – Rationing of cane sugar ends in the UK.
- October – The UNIVAC 1103 is the first commercial computer to use random-access memory.
- October 5
- October 6 – UNICEF, the United Nations Children's Fund, is made a permanent specialized agency of the United Nations.
- October 9
- October 10
- Roland (Monty) Burton wins the 1953 London to Christchurch air race in under 23 hours flying time.
- The Mutual Defense Treaty Between the United States and the Republic of Korea is concluded in Washington, D.C.
- October 12 – The play The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial opens at Plymouth Theatre, New York.
- October 22 – Laos becomes independent from France.
- October 23 – Alto Broadcasting System in the Philippines makes the first television broadcast in southeast Asia through DZAQ-TV. Alto Broadcasting System is the predecessor of what will later become ABS-CBN Corporation.
- October 30 – Cold War: U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower formally approves the top secret document of the United States National Security Council NSC 162/2, which states that the United States' arsenal of nuclear weapons must be maintained and expanded to counter the communist threat.
- November 5 – David Ben-Gurion resigns as prime minister of Israel.
- November 9 – Cambodia becomes independent from France.
- November 20
- November 21
- Puerto Williams is founded in Chile as the southernmost settlement of the world.
- November 25 – England loses 6–3 to Hungary at Wembley Stadium, their first ever loss to a continental team at home.
- November 29 – French paratroopers take Điện Biên Phủ.
- November 30 – Edward Mutesa II, the kabaka (king) of Buganda, is deposed and exiled to London by Sir Andrew Benjamin Cohen, Governor of Uganda.
- December – Hugh Hefner publishes the first issue of Playboy magazine in the United States, featuring a centerfold nude photograph of Marilyn Monroe; it sells 54,175 copies at $.50 each.
- December 2 – The United Kingdom and Iran reform diplomatic relations.
- December 6 – With the NBC Symphony Orchestra, conductor Arturo Toscanini performs what he claims is his favorite Beethoven symphony, Eroica, for the last time. The live performance is broadcast nationwide on radio, and later released on records and CD.
- December 7 – A visit to Iran by American Vice President Richard Nixon sparks several days of riots, as an reaction to the August 19 overthrow of the government of Mohammed Mossadegh by the US-backed Shah. Three students are shot dead by police in Tehran. This event becomes an annual commemoration.
- December 8 – U.S. president Dwight D. Eisenhower delivers his Atoms for Peace address to the United Nations General Assembly in New York City.
- December 10 – Albert Schweitzer is given the 1952 Nobel Peace Prize.
- December 17 – The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approves color television (using the NTSC standard).
- December 23 – The Soviet Union announces officially that Lavrentiy Beria has been executed.
- December 24 – Tangiwai disaster: A railway bridge collapses at Tangiwai, New Zealand, sending a fully loaded passenger train into the Whangaehu River; 151 are killed.
- December 25 – The Amami Islands are returned to Japan after 8 years of United States military occupation.
- December 30
- The Japanese 10 yen coin is issued with serrated edges for a 5-year period, beginning in 1953. All 10 yen coins since have had smooth edges.
- Heavy massive rain, landslides, and flooding in western and southwestern Japan kill an estimated 2,566, and injure 9,433, mainly at Kizugawa, Wakayama, Kumamoto, and Kitakyushu (June–August).
- January 1 – Gary Johnson, American businessman and politician, 29th Governor of New Mexico
- January 2 – Vincent Racaniello, American virologist
- January 4 – George Tenet, former American Central Intelligence Agency director
- January 5
- January 6 – Malcolm Young, Australian musician (d. 2017)
- January 8 – Bruce Sutter, America baseball player
- January 10
- January 13 – John Wake, English cricketer
- January 15
- January 16 – Robert Jay Mathews, American neo-Nazi and founder of the terrorist group The Order (d. 1984)
- January 19
- January 21
- January 22
- January 23 – Robin Zander, American singer and guitarist (Cheap Trick)
- January 26
- January 28 – Colin Campbell, Canadian ice hockey player and executive
- January 29
- Nate Barnett, American basketball player
- Peter Baumann, German keyboard player and songwriter (Tangerine Dream)
- Paulin Bordeleau, Canadian ice hockey player
- Caesar Cervin, American soccer player
- Dennis Delaney, American actor and playwright
- Paul Fusco, American puppeteer and voice actor
- Steve March-Tormé, American singer-songwriter
- Kalevi Marjamaa, Finnish boxer
- Lynne McGranger, Australian actress
- Ronnie Moore, English footballer and manager
- Juan Paredes, Mexican boxer
- Louie Pérez, American singer-songwriter and guitarist
- Fred Riebeling, Australian politician
- Grażyna Szmacińska, Polish chess player
- Dwight Takamine, American politician
- Teresa Teng, Taiwanese singer (d. 1995)
- Yorie Terauchi, Japanese actress
- Charlie Wilson, American singer-songwriter; producer (The Gap Band)
- Hwang Woo-suk, South Korean veterinarian and academic
- Richard Younger-Ross, English politician
- January 31 – Sergei Ivanov, first deputy prime minister of Russia and former minister of defense of Russia
- February 2 – Duane Chapman, American bounty hunter
- February 4 – Kitarō, Japanese New Age musician
- February 7 – Dan Quisenberry, American baseball player (d. 1998)
- February 8 – Mary Steenburgen, American actress
- February 9
- February 10 – June Jones, American quarterback and current NCAA Football head coach at Southern Methodist University
- February 11 – Jeb Bush, American politician
- February 12 – Nabil Shaban, British disabled actor
- February 14 – Sergey Mironov, Russian statesman and Speaker of the Federation Council
- February 19
- February 20 – Riccardo Chailly, Italian orchestral conductor
- February 21 – William Petersen, American actor
- February 22 – Geoffrey Perkins, British comedy producer, writer, actor (d. 2008)
- February 25
- February 26 – Michael Bolton, American surburbia singer
- February 27
- February 28
- March 1 – Richard Bruton, Irish politician and economist
- March 2 – Russell Feingold, U. S. Senator
- March 3
- March 4
- March 5 – Tokyo Sexwale, South African businessman, politician, anti-apartheid activist, and former political prisoner
- March 6
- March 10 – Debbie Brill, Canadian high jumper
- March 11
- March 12
- March 14 – Johan Ullman, Swedish medical doctor, physicist and inventor
- March 15 – Kumba Iala, Guinea-Bissauan politician and 3rd President of Guinea-Bissau (d. 2014)
- March 16
- March 17 – Filemon Lagman, Filipino revolutionary (d. 2001)
- March 18 – Takashi Yoshimatsu, Japanese composer
- March 19 – Lenín Moreno, Ecuadorian politician and 44th President of Ecuador
- March 20 – Sándor Csányi, Hungarian business executive and banker
- March 23 – Chaka Khan, American soul singer
- March 24
- March 26
- March 28 – Melchior Ndadaye, 4th President of Burundi (d. 1993)
- April 2 – Jim Allister, Irish politician
- April 3
- April 4 – Robert Bertrand, Canadian politician
- April 6 – Andy Hertzfeld, American computer programmer
- April 9 – John Howard, English singer-songwriter
- April 10 – Heiner Lauterbach, German actor
- April 11
- April 14 – Eric Tsang, Hong Kong actor
- April 16
- April 17 – Linda Martin, Irish singer and television presenter, Eurovision Song Contest 1992 winner
- April 18 – Rick Moranis, Canadian actor
- April 19 – Ruby Wax, American-born British-based performer
- April 20 – Sebastian Faulks, British novelist
- April 22 – Juhani Komulainen, Finnish composer
- April 24 – Eric Bogosian, American actor, playwright, monologist, and novelist
- April 25 – Ron Clements, American animation director and producer
- April 28
- April 29
- April 30 – Merrill Osmond, American pop singer
- May 2 – Valery Gergiev, Russian/Ossetian conductor
- May 3 – Ibrahim Zakzaky, Shia-Islam cleric.
- May 4 – Salman Hashimikov, Soviet heavyweight wrestler
- May 5 – Dieter Zetsche, German auto executive
- May 6
- May 7 – Ian McKay, British soldier, (VC recipient) (d. 1982)
- May 8 – Alex Van Halen, Dutch-born American rock musician
- May 11 – David Gest, American entertainer, producer and television personality (d. 2016)
- May 14
- May 15
- May 16 – Pierce Brosnan, Irish actor
- May 19 – Victoria Wood, English comic performer (d. 2016)
- May 20 – Robert Doyle, Australian politician
- May 23 – Agathe Uwilingiyimana, 4th Prime Minister of Rwanda (d. 1994)
- May 24 – Alfred Molina, English actor
- May 26 – Michael Portillo, English politician
- May 29
- May 30 – Colm Meaney, Irish actor
- May 31 – Kathie Sullivan, American singer
- June 1
- June 2 – Keith Allen, British actor
- June 3 – Erland Van Lidth De Jeude, Dutch-born wrestler, opera singer and actor (d. 1987)
- June 4 – Susumu Ojima, Japanese entrepreneur
- June 5 – Kathleen Kennedy, American film producer
- June 7
- June 8 – Ivo Sanader, 8th Prime Minister of Croatia
- June 10 – John Edwards, American politician
- June 11
- June 12 – Michael Donovan, Canadian voice actor
- June 13
- June 15
- June 19 – Lesley Nicol, English actress
- June 20 – Ulrich Mühe, German actor (d. 2007)
- June 21 – Benazir Bhutto, Prime Minister of Pakistan (d. 2007)
- June 22
- June 24
- June 29
- July 1
- David Gulpilil, Australian traditional dancer and actor
- Sangay Ngedup, former Prime Minister of Bhutan
- Mohammad Tofiq Rahim, Iraqi Kurdish politician
- Mike Haynes, American football player
- Alan Sunderland, English footballer
- Pat Donovan, American football offensive lineman
- Lawrence Gonzi, 11th Prime Minister of Malta
- Nasir Ali Mamun, Bengali portrait photographer
- Jadranka Kosor, Croatian politician
- July 2 – Nacer Sandjak, Algerian football manager and former player
- July 3
- July 6 – Nanci Griffith, American folk singer-songwriter
- July 9 – François Diederich, Luxembourgish chemist
- July 10
- July 11 – Mindy Sterling, American actress
- July 13 – Gil Birmingham, Native American actor
- July 14 – Bebe Buell, American model and singer
- July 15
- July 17 – Nuria Bages, Mexican actress
- July 19
- July 21 – Jeff Fatt, purple Wiggle from 1991-2012
- July 22 – Sylvia Chang, Taiwanese actress
- July 23 – Najib Abdul Razak, current Prime Minister of Malaysia
- July 24
- July 25 – Tim Gunn, American fashion expert
- July 27 – Yahoo Serious, Australian filmmaker
- July 29
- July 31
- August 1
- August 2 – Butch Patrick, American child actor and musician
- August 4 – Antonio Tajani, Italian politician, President of the European Parliament
- August 5 – Rick Mahler, American baseball player (d. 2005)
- August 8 – Nigel Mansell, English 1992 Formula 1 world champion
- August 9 – Jean Tirole, French Nobel Prize-winning economist
- August 11 – Hulk Hogan, American professional wrestler
- August 12 – Carlos Mesa, President of Bolivia
- August 14
- August 15
- August 16 – Kathie Lee Gifford, American singer and actress
- August 17 – Herta Müller, German Nobel Prize-winning writer
- August 18 – Louie Gohmert, American politician
- August 19 – Benoît Régent, French actor (d. 1994)
- August 20
- August 21 – Géza Szőcs, Hungarian poet and politician
- August 24 – Ron Holloway, American tenor saxophonist
- August 26
- August 27 – Alex Lifeson, Canadian rock musician (Rush)
- August 29 – James Quesada, Nicaraguan-born anthropologist
- August 30 – Robert Parish, American basketball player
- August 31 – György Károly, Hungarian author
- September 2 – John Zorn, American musician
- September 4
- September 6 – Anne Lockhart, American actress
- September 7 – Mammootty, Indian actor
- September 8 – Stu Ungar, American poker player (d. 1998)
- September 10 – Amy Irving, American actress
- September 11 – Lesley Visser, American sportscaster and journalist
- September 12
- September 13 – Ann Dusenberry, American film actress
- September 18 – Betsy Boze, American dean and CEO, Kent State University at Stark
- September 19 – Probal Dasgupta, Indian linguist and Esperantist
- September 21 – Andrew Heermans, American musician, recording engineer, music producer
- September 22 – Ségolène Royal, French politician
- September 23 – Alexey Maslov, commander-in-chief of the Russian Ground Forces
- September 27 – Greg Ham, Australian rock musician (Men at Work)
- September 28 – Jim Diamond, Scottish singer-songwriter (PhD) (d. 2015)
- September 29
- September 30 – Deborah Allen, American singer
- October 1
- October 2 – Brandon Wilson, American author and explorer
- October 4 – Kerry Sherman, American actress
- October 7 – Tico Torres, American Drummer (Bon Jovi)
- October 9 – Tony Shalhoub, American actor
- October 12
- October 14
- October 15
- October 16 – Martha Smith, American model and actress
- October 21
- October 22 – Loyiso Nongxa, South African mathematician
- October 24
- October 26 – Keith Strickland, American musician (The B-52's)
- October 27
- October 29 – Lorelei King, American Actress a.k.a. Tabs Wildcat
- October 31 – Michael J. Anderson, American actor
- November 1 – Susan Tse, Hong Kong actress and opera singer
- November 3 – Dennis Miller, American comedian and radio host
- November 4
- November 5 – Florentino V. Floro, Filipino dwarf judge
- November 7 – Ottfried Fischer, German actor and Kabarett artist
- November 8 – John Musker, American animation director
- November 11
- November 13
- November 14 – Dominique de Villepin, Prime Minister of France
- November 15 – Alexander O'Neal, American singer
- November 17 – Patrick J. Nause, Electrition
- November 18
- November 19
- November 23 – Francis Cabrel, French singer
- November 24
- November 25 – Graham Eadie, Australian rugby player
- November 27
- November 28 – Pamela Hayden, American voice actress
- November 29
- December 2 – Joel Fuhrman, American certified family physician
- December 6
- December 8
- December 9 – John Malkovich, American actor and film director
- December 13
- December 14 – Vangelis Meimarakis, Greek lawyer and politician, 4th Greek Minister for National Defence
- December 17
- December 18 – Khas-Magomed Hadjimuradov, Chechen bard
- December 21 – András Schiff, Hungarian concert pianist and conductor
- December 22
- December 24 – John Breck, Scottish actor (d. 1984)
- December 26
- December 28 – Tatsumi Fujinami, Japanese professional wrestler
- December 29
- December 30
- December 31 – James Remar, American actor
- Sheila Andrews, American surburbian musician (d. 1984)
- Jacques Gounon, French CEO, the Chairman of Eurotunnel
- Peter Lord, British film producer and director
- Jing Jing Luo, Chinese composer
- Phil Ortiz, American animator
- January 1
- January 4
- January 7 – Osa Johnson, American adventurer and documentary filmmaker (b. 1894)
- January 8 – Charles Edward Merriam, American political scientist (b. 1874)
- January 9 – Marguerite Pitre (aka Madame le Corbeau), Canadian murderer (b. 1909)
- January 13 – Edward Marsh, English polymath and civil servant (b. 1872)
- January 21 – Mary Mannering, early 20th century English stage actress (b. 1876)
- January 28 – James Scullin, 9th Prime Minister of Australia (b. 1876)
- January 30 – Lionel Belmore, English actor (b. 1867)
- February 1 – William Sydney Marchant, British colonial official (b. 1894)
- February 2 – Alan Curtis, American actor (b. 1909)
- February 5 – Iuliu Maniu, 32nd Prime Minister of Romania (b. 1873)
- February 9 – Cecil Hepworth, English director (b. 1874)
- February 12 – Hal Colebatch, Australian politician (b. 1872)
- February 19
- February 21 – Konrad Krafft von Dellmensingen, Bavarian general (b. 1862)
- February 23 – Sir Cecil Hunter-Rodwell, British colonial administrator (b. 1874)
- February 24 – Gerd von Rundstedt, German field marshal (b. 1875)
- February 25 – Sergei Winogradsky, Russian scientist (b. 1856)
- February 27 – Paul Hurst, American actor (b. 1888)
- March 2 – James Lightbody, American middle distance runner (b. 1882)
- March 3 – James J. Jeffries, American boxing champion (b. 1875)
- March 5
- March 7 – Edward Sedgwick, American director (b. 1892)
- March 13 – Johan Laidoner, Commander-in-chief of the Estonian Army (b. 1884)
- March 14 – Klement Gottwald, 5th President of Czechoslovakia (b. 1896)
- March 15 – Carl Stockdale, American actor (b. 1874)
- March 20 – Graciliano Ramos, Brazilian writer (b. 1892)
- March 23
- March 24
- March 28 – Jim Thorpe, Native-American athlete and a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame (b. 1887)
- March 31 – Ivan Lebedeff, Russian actor (b. 1895)
- April 2
- April 4 – King Carol II of Romania (b. 1893)
- April 9
- April 11
- April 20 – Erich Weinert, German writer, Communist, and member of the KPD (b. 1890)
- April 27 – Maud Gonne, English-born Irish republican revolutionary, memoirist; former wife of John MacBride (b. 1866)
- April 29 – Kiki de Montparnasse, French artists' model (b. 1901)
- May 1 – Everett Shinn, American painter (b. 1876)
- May 8 – Anna Rüling, German journalist, "the first known lesbian activist" (b. 1880)
- May 16
- May 19 – Dámaso Berenguer, Spanish soldier and politician, former Prime Minister (b. 1873)
- May 21 – Ernst Zermelo, German logician and mathematician (b. 1871)
- May 27 – Jesse Burkett, American baseball player (Cleveland Spiders) and a member of the MLB Hall of Fame (b. 1868)
- May 29 – Man Mountain Dean, American professional wrestler (b. 1891)
- May 30 – Dooley Wilson, American actor (b. 1886)
- May 31 – Vladimir Tatlin, Soviet painter and architect (b. 1885)
- June 1 – Alex James, Scottish football (soccer) player (b. 1901)
- June 5
- June 9 – Godfrey Tearle, American actor (b. 1884)
- June 15 – Henry Scattergood, American cricketer (b. 1877)
- June 18 – René Fonck, French aviator, top Allied World War I Flying Ace (b. 1894)
- June 19
- June 23 – Albert Gleizes, French artist and theoretician (b. 1881)
- June 30 – Elsa Beskow, Swedish author and illustrator of children's books (b. 1874)
- July 1 – Totius, Afrikaans poet. (b. 1877)
- July 9 – Annie Kenney, British working-class suffragette (b. 1879)
- July 11 – Oliver Campbell, American tennis player (b. 1871)
- July 12 – Herbert Rawlinson, English actor (b. 1885)
- July 16 – Hilaire Belloc, French-born British writer and historian (b. 1870)
- July 17 – Maude Adams, American actress (b. 1872)
- July 20 – Dumarsais Estimé, 30th President of Haiti (b. 1900)
- July 26 – Nikolaos Plastiras, Greek general and politician, former Prime Minister of Greece (b. 1883)
- July 29 – Richard William Pearse, New Zealand airplane pioneer (b. 1877)
- July 31 – Robert A. Taft, American politician, United States Senate Majority Leader (b. 1889)
- August 1 – Jānis Mendriks, Soviet Roman Catholic priest (b. 1907) [importance?]
- August 7 – Abner Powell, Major League Baseball player (b. 1860)
- August 11 – Tazio Nuvolari, Italian racing driver (b. 1892)
- August 15 – Ludwig Prandtl, German physicist (b. 1875)
- August 22 – Jim Tabor, American baseball player (b. 1916)
- August 25 – Jessie Aspinall, Australian doctor, first female junior medical resident at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital (b. 1880)
- August 30
- September 2 – General Jonathan Wainwright, American Medal of Honor recipient (b. 1883)
- September 5 – Francis Ford, American actor and director (b. 1881)
- September 7 – Nobuyuki Abe, Japanese politician and military leader, former Prime Minister (b. 1875)
- September 8 – Fred M. Vinson, Chief Justice of the United States (b. 1890)
- September 12
- September 13 – Mary Brewster Hazelton, American painter (b. 1868)
- September 15 – Erich Mendelsohn, German architect (b. 1887)
- September 17 – Wenxiu, consort of China's last emperor Puyi (b. 1909)
- September 24 – Jacobo Fitz-James Stuart, 17th Duke of Alba, Spanish aristocrat (born 1878)
- September 26 – Xu Beihong, Chinese painter (b. 1895)
- September 27 – Hans Fritzsche, senior Nazi official, one of only three acquitted at the Nuremberg trials (b. 1900)
- September 28 – Edwin Hubble, American astronomer (b. 1889)
- September 30
- October 3 – Arnold Bax, English composer (b. 1887)
- October 6 – Porter Hall, American actor (b. 1888)
- October 8
- October 11 – Robin Bush, younger sister of President George Walker Bush (b. 1949)
- October 12 – Hjalmar Hammarskjöld, Swedish politician, 13th Prime Minister of Sweden, leaders of World War I (b. 1862)
- October 13 – Millard Mitchell, American actor (b. 1903)
- October 14 – Arthur Wimperis, English illustrator and playwright (b. 1874)
- October 20 – Robert Brooke-Popham, British air chief marshal (b. 1878)
- October 25 – Holger Pedersen, Dutch linguist (b. 1867)
- October 27 – Thomas Wass, English cricketer (b. 1873)
- November 5 – Harry A. Marmer, Ukrainian-born American mathematician and oceanographer (b. 1885)
- November 8
- November 9
- November 18 – Ruth Crawford Seeger, American composer (b. 1901)
- November 21 – Larry Shields, American musician (b. 1893)
- November 22 – Syed Sulaiman Nadvi, Indian/Pakistani historian, biographer, littérateur and scholar of Islam (b. 1884)
- November 27 – Eugene O'Neill, American writer, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1888)
- November 28 – Rudolf Bauer, German-born painter (b. 1889)
- November 29
- November 30 – Francis Picabia, French painter and poet (b. 1879)
- December 5 – Jorge Negrete, Mexican singer and actor (b. 1911)
- December 10 – Abdullah Yusuf Ali, Indian-born Islamic scholar and translator (b. 1872)
- December 14 – Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, American writer (b. 1896)
- December 19 – Robert Andrews Millikan, American physicist Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1868)
- December 21 – Nicholas H. Heck, American geophysicist, oceanographer, and surveyor (b. 1882)
- December 23 – Lavrentiy Beria, Minister of Internal Affairs of the Soviet Union (executed) (b. 1899)
- December 25
- December 27
- December 31 – Albert Plesman, Dutch aviation pioneer (b. 1889)
- Physics – Frits (Frederik) Zernike
- Chemistry – Hermann Staudinger
- Medicine – Hans Adolf Krebs, Fritz Albert Lipmann
- Literature – Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill
- Peace – George Catlett Marshall
- Stratton, J.M. (1969). Agricultural Records. John Baker. ISBN 0-212-97022-4.
- Grieve, Hilda (1959). The great tide: The story of the 1953 flood disaster in Essex. Essex County Council.
- Urschel, Donna. "The Death of Stalin". Library of Congress. Retrieved 2010-08-09.
- "Chance for Peace Speech". Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial Commission. April 16, 1953. Archived from the original on November 22, 2010. Retrieved 9 August 2010.
- Watson, J. D.; Crick, F. H. C. (1953). "Molecular structure of nucleic acids: a structure for deoxyribose nucleic acid". 171. Nature: 737–738. Retrieved 9 August 2010.
- "Dinard – Viking". Simplon Postcards: The Passenger Ship Website. 2005. Retrieved 2012-10-22.
- "HISTORIC AIRCRAFT: THE FLYING BOXCAR". eLIBRARY.RU. Retrieved 2012-01-19.
- Weiner, J. S.; Oakley, K. P.; Le Gros Clark, W. E. (1953-11-20). "The Solution of the Piltdown Problem". Bulletin of the British Museum (Natural History), Geological Series. 2 (3): 141–6.
- "Piltdown Man forgery". The Times. London. 1953-11-21. p. 6.