1975 Boston begins court ordered busing of public schools
|1986 Japan auto making goes to Europe
Continuing its enormous expansion of the 1970s and early 80s, the
Nissan Motor Company Ltd. opened its Sunderland, England, plant, the
first Japanese automobile factory in Europe. Established in 1933 as
the Jidosha Seizo Company, Nissan remained a mid-size automobile manufacturer
until it entered the world market in the 1960s, when its sales grew
by leaps and bounds. Nissan, as well as several other Japanese manufacturers,
continued to grow through the next decade, propelled by the increasing
popularity of their fuel-efficient cars. Nissan eventually opened
plants in Australia, Peru, Mexico, the United States, and Germany.
1967 Uganda abolishes traditional tribal kingdoms, becomes
|1974 Ford pardons Nixon.
US President Gerald R. Ford preemptively pardons Richard M. Nixon
for any crimes he may have committed or participated in while in office.
Ford would later defend this action before the House Judiciary Committee,
explaining that he wanted to end the national divisions created by
the Watergate affair.
On 17 June
1972, seven men, including two members of the Nixon reelection campaign,
were arrested for breaking into and illegally wiretapping the Democratic
National Committee headquarters in Washington DC's Watergate Hotel.
Journalists and the Senate Select Committee on Presidential Campaign
Activities discovered a higher-echelon conspiracy surrounding the
incident, and a political scandal of unprecedented magnitude erupted.
On 17 May 1973, the special Senate
committee began televised proceedings on the rapidly escalating Watergate
affair, and one week later, Harvard law professor Archibald Cox was
sworn in as special Watergate prosecutor. During the Senate hearings,
former White House legal counsel John Dean testified that the Watergate
break-in had been approved by former Attorney General John Mitchell
with the knowledge of chief White House advisers John Ehrlichman and
H. R. Haldeman, and that the president had been aware of the cover-up.
Meanwhile, Cox and his staff began
to uncover widespread evidence of political espionage by CREEP, the
Nixon reelection committee, illegal wiretapping of thousands of citizens
by the administration, and corporate contributions to the Republican
Party in return for political favors. In July, the existence of what
were to be called the Watergate tapes, recordings of White House conversations
between Nixon and his staff, was revealed during the Senate hearings.
Cox subpoenaed these tapes, and after three months of delay, President
Nixon agreed to send summaries of the recordings. Cox rejected the
summaries, and Nixon fired him.
His successor as special prosecutor, Leon Jaworski, leveled indictments
against several high-ranking administration officials, including Mitchell
and Dean, who were duly convicted. Public confidence in the president
rapidly waned, and by July 30, 1974, the day that Nixon finally released
the Watergate tapes under coercion from the US Supreme Court, the
House Judiciary Committee had adopted three articles of impeachment
against President Nixon: obstruction of justice, abuse of presidential
powers, and hindrance of the impeachment process. On 09 August 1974,
Richard M. Nixon became the first president in US history to resign
1960 Penguin Books in Britain is charged
with obscenity for trying to publish the D.H. Lawrence novel Lady Chatterly's
1958 Oman turns over Gwadur (on Balufchistan
coast) to Pakistan
1957 Pope Pius XII encyclical
On motion pictures, radio, TV
United States, Australia, France, Great Britain, New Zealand, the Philippines,
Pakistan, and Thailand sign the mutual defense treaty that establishes the
Southeast Asia Treaty Organization (SEATO).
1953 Continental Trailways offers the first transcontinental
express bus service in the US The 5076 km ride from New York City to San
Francisco lasts eighty-eight hours and fifty minutes, of which only seventy-seven
minutes are non-riding time. The cost is $56.70. Nowadays, Greyhound charges
1954 SEATO established ^top^
Having been directed by President Dwight
D. Eisenhower to put together an alliance to contain any communist
aggression in the free territories of Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia,
or Southeast Asia in general, Secretary of State John Foster Dulles
forges an agreement establishing a military alliance that becomes
the Southeast Asia Treaty Organization (SEATO). Signatories, including
France, Great Britain, Australia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Pakistan,
Thailand, and the United States, pledge themselves to “act to meet
the common danger” in the event of aggression against any signatory
state. A separate protocol to SEATO designated Laos, Cambodia, and
“the free territory under the jurisdiction of the State of Vietnam
[South Vietnam]” as also being areas subject to the provisions of
The language of the treaty did not
go as far as the absolute mutual defense commitments and force structure
of the NATO alliance, instead providing only for consultations in
case of aggression against a signatory or protocol state before any
combined actions were initiated. This lack of an agreement that would
have compelled a combined military response to aggression significantly
weakened SEATO as a military alliance. It was, however, used as legal
basis for US involvement in South Vietnam. SEATO expired on 30 June
1951 Japan signs treaty of peace with 48 countries,
in San Francisco.
1950 The US Congress passes the
Defense Production Act to adjust the economy to the Korean "police
action". It includes wage and price controls.
1944 Germany's V-2 offensive against England begins
|1945 American troops occupy southern Korea.
US troops land in Korea to begin their postwar occupation of the southern
part of that nation, almost exactly one month after Soviet troops
had entered northern Korea to begin their own occupation. Although
the US and Soviet occupations were supposed to be temporary, the division
of Korea quickly became permanent. Korea had been a Japanese possession
since the early 20th century. During World War II, the allies
the United States, Soviet Union, China, and Great Britain made
a somewhat hazy agreement that
Korea should become an independent country following the war. As the
war progressed, US officials began to press the Soviets to enter the
war against Japan. At the Yalta Conference in February 1945, Soviet
leader Joseph Stalin pledged that his nation would declare war on
Japan exactly three months after Nazi Germany was defeated. A few
months later, at the Potsdam Conference in July and August 1945, it
was agreed that Soviet troops would occupy the northern portion of
Korea, while American forces would take a similar action in southern
Korea in order to secure the area and liberate it from Japanese control.
The occupations would be temporary, and Korea would eventually decide
its own political future, though no date was set for the end of the
US and Soviet occupations. On August 8, the Soviets declared war on
Japan. On August 9, Soviet forces invaded northern Korea. A few days
later, Japan surrendered. Keeping to their part of the bargain, US
forces entered southern Korea on 08 September 1945.
Over the next few years, the situation in Korea steadily worsened.
A civil war between communist and nationalist forces in southern Korea
resulted in thousands of people killed and wounded. The Soviets steadfastly
refused to consider any plans for the reunification of Korea. The
United States reacted by setting up a government in South Korea, headed
by Syngman Rhee. The Soviets established a communist regime in North
Korea, under the leadership of Kim Il-Sung. In 1948, the United States
again offered to hold national elections, but the Soviets refused
the offer. Elections were held in South Korea, and Rhee's government
received a popular mandate. The Soviets refused to recognize Rhee's
government, though, and insisted that Kim Il-Sung was the true leader
of all Korea.
the establishment of a communist government in North Korea, Soviet
troops withdrew in 1948; and US troops in South Korea followed suit
in 1949. In 1950, the North Koreans attempted to reunite the nation
by force and launched a massive military assault on South Korea. The
United States quickly came to the aid of South Korea, beginning a
three-year involvement in the bloody and frustrating Korean War. Korea
remains a divided nation today, and the North Korean regime is one
of the few remaining communist governments left in the world.
|1943 Italy's surrender made public
Dwight Eisenhower publicly announces the surrender of Italy to the
Allies, secretly agreed to on September 3, hours before the British
Eighth Army began the Allied invasion of the Italian peninsula, when
the Italian military had signed the surrender document in Sicily.
With Mussolini deposed from power and
the earlier collapse of the fascist government in July, General Pietro
Badoglio, the man who had assumed power in Mussolini's stead by request
of King Victor Emanuel, began negotiating with General Eisenhower
for weeks. Weeks later, Badoglio finally approved a conditional surrender,
allowing the Allies to land in southern Italy and begin beating the
Germans back up the peninsula.
Operation Avalanche, the Allied invasion of Italy, was given the go-ahead,
and the next day would see Allied troops land in Salerno.
Ever since Mussolini had begun to falter, Hitler had been making plans
to invade Italy to keep the Allies from gaining a foothold that would
situate them within easy reach of the German-occupied Balkans. On
08 September Hitler launches Operation Axis, the occupation of Italy.
As German troops enter Rome, General Badoglio and the royal family
flee Rome for southeastern Italy to set up a new antifascist government.
Italian troops began surrendering
to their former German allies. Where they resisted, as had happened
earlier in Greece, they were slaughtered (1646 Italian soldiers were
murdered by Germans on the Greek island of Cephalonia, and the 5000
that finally surrendered were ultimately shot).
One of the goals of Operation Axis was to keep Italian navy vessels
out of the hands of the Allies. When the Italian battleship Roma
headed for an Allied-controlled port in North Africa, it was sunk
by German bombers. The Roma was the first ship ever sunk
by a radio-controlled guided missile. More than 1500 crewmen drowned.
The Germans also scrambled to move Allied POWs to labor camps in Germany
in order to prevent their escape. In fact, many POWS did manage to
escape before the German invasion, and several hundred volunteered
to stay in Italy to fight alongside the Italian guerillas in the north.
On September 13, Nazi commandos rescue
Fascist leader Benito Mussolini from his prison in the Abruzzi Mountains.
Ten days later, Mussolini proclaims the Italian Social Republic, with
its headquarters in northern Italy.
On October 13, the Italian government, refusing to recognize Mussolini's
puppet state, would declare war against Nazi Germany. Since the beginning
of the war, the Italian Resistance visibly opposed Italy's Fascist
regime and its cooperation with the Nazis, organizing mountain guerilla
units, workers' strikes, and industrial sabotages. The Resistance
gained momentum after a government coup toppled Mussolini, and during
the Allied liberation, soldiers of the Resistance provided invaluable
aid to Allied troops.
|1943 US forces seize more of New Guinea
Gen. Douglas MacArthur's 503rd Parachute Regiment land and occupy
Nazdab, just east of Lae, a port city in northeastern Papua New Guinea,
situating them perfectly for future operations on the islands. New
Guinea had been occupied by the Japanese since March 1942. Raids by
Allied forces early on were met with tremendous ferocity, and they
were often beaten back by the Japanese occupiers.
Much of the Allied response was led by forces from Australia, as they
were most threatened by the presence of the Japanese in that sphere.
The tide began to turn in December 1942, as the Australians recaptured
Buna—but despite numerical superiority, the Japanese continued to
hang on, fighting to keep every square mile they had captured. Many
Japanese committed suicide, swimming out to sea, rather than be taken
In January 1943, the
Americans joined the Aussies in assaults on Sanananda, which resulted
in huge losses for the Japanese—7000 killed—and the first land defeat
of the war. As Japanese reinforcements raced for the next Allied targets,
Lae and Salamauam, in March, 137 American bombers destroyed the Japanese
transport vessels, drowning 3500 Japanese, as well as their much-needed
fuel and spare parts. On 08 September almost 2000 American and Australian
Airborne Division parachutists landed and seized Nazdab, which held
a valuable airfield. The Allies quickly established a functioning
airstrip and prepared to take the port city of Lae, one more step
in MacArthur's strategy to recapture New Guinea and the Solomons—and
eventually go back for the Philippines.
1939 FDR declares "limited national emergency" due to
war in Europe
|1941 Siege of Leningrad begins.
Nazi Germany's siege of Leningrad would last 900 days. Some citizens
were forced to subsist on bread made from sawdust while others worked
through the winter in makeshift military factories without heat. Although
many perished from starvation, bombings, and the cold, the city's
determined resistance held the German troops at bay and helped turn
the tide of World War II. When the siege finally ended in January
of 1944, Leningrad's population had been reduced from 2'500'000 to
During World War II,
German forces begin their siege of Leningrad, a major industrial center
and the USSR's second-largest city. The German armies were later joined
by Finnish forces that advanced against Leningrad down the Karelian
Isthmus. The siege of Leningrad, also known as the 900-Day Siege though
it lasted a grueling 872 days, and resulted in the deaths of some
one million of the city's civilians and Red Army defenders.
Leningrad, formerly St. Petersburg,
capital of the Russian Empire, was one of the initial targets of the
German invasion of June 1941. As German armies raced across the western
Soviet Union, three-quarters of Leningrad's industrial plants and
hundreds of thousands of its inhabitants were evacuated to the east.
More than two million residents remained, however, and the evacuated
were replaced by refugees who fled to Leningrad ahead of the German
advance. All able-bodied persons in the city men, women, and
children were enlisted to build antitank fortifications along
Leningrad's edge. By the end of July, German forces had cut the Moscow-Leningrad
railway and were penetrating the outer belt of the fortifications
around Leningrad. On 08 September German forces besieged the city,
but they were held at bay by Leningrad's fortifications and its 200'000
Red Army defenders. That day, a German air bombardment set fire to
warehouses containing a large part of Leningrad's scant food supply.
Aiming to tighten the noose around
Leningrad, the Germans launched an offensive to the east in October
and cut off the last highways and rail lines south of the city. Meanwhile,
Finnish forces advanced down the Karelian Isthmus (which had been
seized from Finland by the Soviets during the Russo-Finnish War of
1939 to 1940) and besieged Leningrad from the north. By early November,
the city was almost completely encircled, and only across Lake Ladoga
was a supply lifeline possible.
German artillery and air bombardments came several times a day during
the first months of the siege. The daily ration for civilians was
reduced to 125 grams of bread, no more than a thick slice. Starvation
set in by December, followed by the coldest winter in decades, with
temperatures falling to -40 degrees Fahrenheit. People worked through
the winter in makeshift armament factories without roofs, building
the weapons that kept the Germans just short of victory.
Residents burned books and furniture to stay warm and searched for
food to supplement their scarce rations. Animals from the city zoo
were consumed early in the siege, followed before long by household
pets. Wallpaper paste made from potatoes was scraped off the wall,
and leather was boiled to produce an edible jelly. Grass and weeds
were cooked, and scientists worked to extract vitamins from pine needles
and tobacco dust. Hundreds, perhaps thousands, resorted to cannibalizing
the dead, and in a few cases people were murdered for their flesh.
The Leningrad police struggled to keep order and formed a special
division to combat cannibalism.
Across frozen Lake Ladoga, trucks made it to Leningrad with supplies,
but not enough. Thousands of residents, mostly children and the elderly,
were evacuated across the lake, but many more remained in the city
and succumbed to starvation, the bitter cold, and the relentless German
air attacks. In 1942 alone, the siege claimed some 600'000 lives.
In the summer, barges and other ships braved German air attack to
cross Lake Ladoga to Leningrad with supplies.
In January 1943, Red Army soldiers broke through the German line,
rupturing the blockade and creating a more efficient supply route
along the shores of Lake Ladoga. For the rest of the winter and then
during the next, the "road of life" across the frozen Lake Ladoga
kept Leningrad alive. Eventually, an oil pipeline and electric cables
were laid on the lake bed. In the summer of 1943, vegetables planted
on any open ground in the city supplemented rations.
In early 1944, Soviet forces approached Leningrad, forcing German
forces to retreat southward from the city on January 27. The siege
was over. A giant Soviet offensive to sweep the USSR clean of its
invaders began in May. The 872-day siege of Leningrad cost an estimated
one million Soviet lives, perhaps hundreds of thousands more. The
Soviet government awarded the Order of Lenin to the people of Leningrad
in 1945, paying tribute to their endurance during the grueling siege.
The city did not regain its prewar population of three million until
1930 NYC public schools begin teaching Hebrew
| 1935 Huey P. Long is shot.
is shot at point-blank range, in the corridor outside the main hall
of the state capitol in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, by Dr. Carl Austin
Weiss, Jr, who is then killed on the spot by Long's bodyguards. Mortally
wounded, Long would die two days later. Apparently Dr. Weiss was avenging
his father-in-law, who had had lost his job as a Louisiana judge,
because he was not part of the Long political machine and Long publicly
Huey Long, nicknamed
the "Kingfish" after a character on the popular Amos 'n' Andy radio
show, and called a demagogue by critics, was a larger-than-life populist
leader who boasted that he bought legislators "like sacks of potatoes,
shuffled them like a deck of cards."
In 1928 Long had become the youngest governor of Louisiana at age
34. His brash style alienated many people, including the heads of
the biggest corporation in the state, Standard Oil. Long preached
the redistribution of wealth, which he believed could be done by heavily
taxing the rich. One of his early propositions, which met with much
opposition, was an "occupational" tax on oil refineries. Later, Long
would develop these theories into the Share Our Wealth society, which
promised a $2500 minimum income per family.
Long also abolished the state's poll tax on voting and gained free
textbooks for every student. His motto was "Every Man a King." His
populism led to an impeachment attempt, but he successfully defeated
the charges. In 1930, he won the election for US senator but declined
to serve until the successor he picked for governor was elected in
Soon after vigorously campaigning
for Franklin Roosevelt in 1932, Long, with his own designs on the
office, began loudly denouncing the new president. In response, many
of his allies in the Louisiana legislature turned against him and
would no longer vote for his candidates. In an effort to regain power
in the state, Long managed to pass a series of laws giving him control
over the appointment of every public position in the state, including
every policeman and schoolteacher.
Pius XI issues the encyclical Rerum
Orientalium, promoting study of the history, doctrine and liturgy
of Eastern Orthodoxy. He recommends that priests apply themselves to special
studies at the Oriental Institute in Rome, founded in 1917 by Benedict XV.
1925 Germany is admitted into the League of Nations.
1920 US Air Mail service begins (NYC to SF)
Germany begins a new offensive in Argonne on the Western Front.
1st appearance of "The Pledge of Allegiance" (Youth's Companion)
1864 George McClellan accepts nomination as Democratic
candidate for President
1863 Confederate Lieutenant
Dick Dowling with 47 Texas volunteers thwarts a Union naval landing at Sabine
Pass (Fort Griffin), northeast of Galveston, Texas.
Lincoln makes a speech about when you can fool people
Oxford Movement leader, John Henry Newman, 44, resigns from the
Church of England convinced that it had severed itself from its ancient
episcopal moorings and true apostolic succession and became a Roman
1845 A French column surrenders at Sidi
Brahim in the Algerian War
1796 Battle of Bassano French beat Austrians
|1810 The Pacific Fur Company's first ship
leaves for Oregon ^top^
The sailing ship Tonquin leaves
New York with 33 employees of Jacob Astor's new Pacific Fur Company
on board. Six months later, the Tonquin would arrive at the mouth
of the Columbia River, where Astor's men establish the town of Astoria
and begin trading for furs with the Indians. Thus began the first
major American involvement in the lucrative far western fur trade.
During the colonial era, the powerful
British Hudson's Bay Company, along with several French companies
based in Montreal, had dominated the North American fur trade. But
slowly and timidly, Americans began to establish their own fur companies
in the early nineteenth century, particularly after Thomas Jefferson
doubled the size of the United States with the Louisiana Purchase
of 1803, and the Lewis and Clark Expedition (1804-6) reported that
the vast new American territory was rich in beaver. Based on their
explorations, Lewis and Clark suggested that furs could be carried
over the Rockies by horse to the Columbia River and from there shipped
to the Orient more cheaply than the British or French could move furs
eastward to Europe.
a rare business opportunity, the German-born immigrant John Jacob
Astor organized his Pacific Fur Company and dispatched the Tonquin
for the Oregon coast to try and make Lewis and Clark's proposal a
reality. But while the small trading post of Astoria initially quickly
proved a success, the American control of the Pacific Northwest fur
trade did not last. By late 1813, Astor's partners, who were mostly
Canadian, decided to sell out to the British North West Company, and
during the War of 1812 the British Navy took control of Astoria.
With the British temporarily dominating
the region, Astor decided to dissolve the Pacific Fur Company and
focus his efforts on his American Fur Company, an enterprise that
eventually came to control three-quarters of the American fur trade.
Despite the loss of his first Pacific coast outpost at Astoria, Astor's
profits from his American Fur Company, the War of 1812, and large
investments in real estate, eventually made him the wealthiest American
of his day and established one of the great enduring family fortunes.
1760 Montréal surrendered by the French to the British.
1755 Battle of Lake George: British forces under
William Johnson defeat the French and the Indians..
1636 Harvard College (later University) is founded by
the Massachusetts Puritans at New Towne. It was the first institution of
higher learning established in North America, and was originally founded
to train future ministers.
|1664 New Amsterdam surrenders to the British.
Dutch Governor Peter Stuyvesant surrenders New Amsterdam (about 120
houses and 1000 inhabitants), the capital of New Netherland, to an
English naval squadron under Colonel Richard Nicolls with 300 soldiers.
Stuyvesant had hoped to resist the English, but he was an unpopular
ruler, and his Dutch subjects refused to rally around him. Five years
later, New Amsterdam's name was changed to New York, in honor of the
Duke of York, who organized the mission.
The colony of New Netherland was established by the Dutch West India
Company in 1624 and grew to encompass all of present-day New York
City and parts of Long Island, Connecticut, and New Jersey. A successful
Dutch settlement in the colony grew up on the southern tip of Manhattan
Island and was christened New Amsterdam.
To legitimatize Dutch claims to New Amsterdam, Dutch governor Peter
Minuit formally purchased Manhattan from the local tribe from which
it derives it name in 1626. According to legend, the Manhattans
Indians of Algonquian linguistic stock agreed to give up the
island in exchange for trinkets valued at only $24. However, as they
were ignorant of European customs of property and contracts, it was
not long before the Manhattans came into armed conflict with the expanding
Dutch settlement at New Amsterdam. Beginning in 1641, a protracted
war was fought between the colonists and the Manhattans, which resulted
in the death of more than 1000 Indians and settlers.
In 1664, New Amsterdam passed to English control, and English and
Dutch settlers lived together peacefully. In 1673, there was a short
interruption of English rule when the Netherlands temporary regained
the settlement. In 1674, New York was returned to the English, and
in 1686 it became the first city in the colonies to receive a royal
charter. After the US War of Independence, it became the first capital
of the United States.
1628 John Endecott arrives
with colonists at Salem, Massachusetts, where he will become the governor.
1565 Turkish siege of Malta broken by Maltese and Knights
of Saint John.
1529 Ottoman Sultan Suleiman re-enters
Buda and establishes John Zapolyai as the puppet king of Hungary.
1522 Spanish navigator Juan de Elcano returns to Spain,
completes the first circumnavigation of the globe, expedition begins under
1380 Russians defeat Tatars
at Kulikovo, beginning decline of Tatars.
a six-month siege, Jerusalem surrenders to the 60'000 soldiers of Titus'
Roman army. Over a million Jewish citizens perished in the siege and, following
the city's capture, another 97'000 are sold into slavery.