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Milestones, Dec. 12, 1938

3 minute read

Born. To Sir Oswald Mosley, 42, Great Britain’s blackest fascist, and his wife, The Honorable Diana Freeman-Mitford, 28: a son, their first common child; in London, same day their marriage was revealed (TIME, Dec. 5). Formally announcing the birth in his paper Action, Sir Oswald explained why his marriage had been kept secret: “We leave to financial democracy the custom of a man taking his wife around in public.”

Married. Sally Poor Clark, 18, night-club-singing sister-in-law of John Aspinwall Roosevelt; and George Xavier McLanahan, 25, socialite; in Boston. John Roosevelt was one of 16 ushers.

Divorced. Potter d’Orsay Palmer, playboy member of Chicago’s rich hotel family; by his third wife, Pauline, Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. heiress; in Sarasota, Fla. Grounds: habitual intemperance and cruelty. Palmer’s first two wives supposedly received divorce settlements totalling about $5,000,000, but the third Mrs. Palmer received only $250 a month alimony and counsels’ fees ($10,000). Few days after his divorce, Potter Palmer married Pluma Louise Lowery Abatiello, 23, roadhouse waitress.

Died. Irina & Galina, one year and 22 days old, famed baby twin girls, with one body, two heads, four arms; of pneumonia; 30 min. apart; in Moscow’s Ail-Union Institute of Experimental Medicine. Most coalescent twins (the result of incomplete separation of the ovum) are born dead or die soon after birth. Because Irina and Galina lived, acted like normal babies, they were a unique boon to researchers. Although they shared a common circulatory system, they had separate hearts whose rhythms did not coincide, separate stomachs, separate nervous systems. From the fact that they often slept at different times Soviet scientists evolved further proof of Pavlov’s theory of sleep: that it is initiated not by poisons in the blood stream but by the nervous system.

Died. Ray Ruddy, 27, swimmer who was considered one of the ablest water poloists in the world; day after he had fallen down a flight of stairs in his aunt’s home and cracked his skull on a radiator; in Manhattan. Son of the most famed water poloist in history, Coach Joe Ruddy of the New York Athletic Club, brother of four other star swimmers, Ray Ruddy won the President’s Cup for seven consecutive years, swam on three Olympic teams, won the National Long Distance Championship six years in a row.

Died. Lieut. General Otto von Lossow, 70, onetime Bavarian Reichswehr commander, who once called Hitler a “swashbuckling little ward politician” and suppressed the Munich Beer Hall putsch (1923); in Munich.

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