This Day in U.S. Military History……February 15

15 February

1726 – Abraham Clark, Declaration of Independence signer, was born.
1762 – The British capture Fort Martiniqe, the main French port in the West Indies, and then St. Lucia and Grenada. Later in the year, Britain will also overrun the Spanish colonial outposts of Cuba and of Manila in the Philippines.
1764 – The city of St. Louis was established as a French trading post. Pierre Laclede Ligue and stepson Auguste Chouteau notched a couple of trees that marked the site for Laclede’s Landing that became St. Louis.
1798 – The first serious fist fight occurred in Congress.
1799 – The 1st US printed ballots were authorized in Pennsylvania.1804 – New Jersey became the last northern state to abolish slavery.
1834 – In Madrid, the Van Ness Convention settles disputes between the US and Spain.

1838 – In defiance of the new “gag rule” adopted 19 December 1837, Representative John Quincy Adams introduces 350 petitions against slavery into the House. The petitions are tabled.

1856 – USS Supply, commanded by LT David Dixon Porter, sails from Smyrna, Syria, bound for Indianola, Texas, with a load of 21 camels intended for experimental use in the American desert west of the Rockies.
1861 – Ft. Point was completed & garrisoned. It never fired cannon in anger.
1862 – Grant [on his 3rd day there] launched a major assault on Fort Donelson, Tenn.
1862 – Four Confederate gunboats under Commodore Tattnall attacked Union batteries at Venus Point, on Savannah River, Georgia, but were forced back to Savannah. Tattnall was attempting to effect the passage of steamer Ida from Fort Pulaski to Savannah.

1869 – Charges of treason against Jefferson Davis were dropped.

1911 – Congress transferred Fort Trumbull, New London, CT from War Department to Treasury Department for the use of the USRCS.
1918 – The 1st WW I US army troopship was torpedoed & sunk off Ireland by Germany.
1919 – The American Legion was organized in Paris.

1941 – President Roosevelt sends James B. Conant, President of Harvard University, to Britain to discuss military technology.
1943The Germans broke the U.S. lines at the Fanid-Sened Sector in Tunisia. Troops under the command of Rommel, now commanding the Italian 1st Army, join the Axis offensive. A detachment of the 15th Panzer Division, along with Italian armor, strikes Gafsa and captures the town. Most of Rommel’s forces are defending the Mareth Line where the last of the rearguard is now arriving from Libya.
1944Allied aircraft bomb the historic monastery on the crest of Monte Cassino. German forces, which have not occupied the position previously, move into the ruins of the monestary. The New Zealand Corps (part of US 5th Army) follows-up the bombing with an assault which fails.
1944 – The 3rd Amphibious Force (Admiral Wilkinson) lands elements of the New Zealand 3rd Division (General Barrowclough) on the Green Islands, north of Bougainville. US Task Force 39 (Admiral Merrill) provides escort.
1945 – During the day, the US 8th Air Force raids Dresden where the fire storm continues.
1945 – A regiment from US 11th Corps is landed at the southern tip of Bataan on Luzon to help in the operations of the remainder of the corps. The fighting in Manila continues.
1945 – American USAAF B-24 and B-29 bombers raid Iwo Jima in preparation for the landings later in the month. They drop a daily average of 450 tons of bombs over the course of 15 days (6800 tons).

1951The communists were defeated at Chipyong-ni by the U.S. 2nd Infantry Division’s 23rd Infantry Regimental Combat Team (RCT) and the French Battalion. At the climax of the battle, the 1st Cavalry Division’s Task Force Crombez broke through to support the encircled 23rd RCT. After three days of intense combat and having suffered perhaps 8,000 casualties, the Chinese forces withdrew. The 23rd RCT suffered 52 killed, 42 missing and 259 wounded in action. This was the first major battlefield defeat of the Chinese communist forces in the war.
1951 – President Truman stated that the United Nations had authorized General MacArthur to recross the 38th parallel.

1967 – Thirteen U.S. helicopters were shot down in one day in Vietnam.
1985 – The STS 51-E vehicle was moved to the launch pad.
1989 – The Soviet Union announced that the last of its troops had left Afghanistan, after more than nine years of military intervention.
1991 – Iraq proposed a conditional withdrawal from Kuwait, an offer dismissed by President Bush as a “cruel hoax.”
1994 – US asked Aristide to adopt a peace plan for Haiti.
1994 – Navy chief Adm. Frank Kelso II agreed to early retirement because of criticism over the Tailhook sex abuse scandal.
1999Coast Guard recruiting ads began appearing on World Wrestling Federation cable television programs. The sponsorship package, which maintained the Coast Guard’s status as a PSA advertiser, included an in-program media feature called “The Coast Guard Rescue of the Week,” which aired during the show while a wrestler saved a teammate. WWF superstars also appeared at recruiting centers and Coast Guard units. The controversial recruiting program was approved of by the Commandant.
2000 – In Iraq a 2nd UN official quit in protest that sanctions were undermining humanitarian efforts.
2001 – President Bush said the Pentagon should review its policy on civilian participation in military exercises like the emergency ascent drill a Navy submarine was performing when it sank a Japanese fishing vessel off Hawaii.
2002 – American and Belgian officials said Sanjivan Ruprah, a Kenyan diamond mine owner, offered details between al Qaeda and the arms-trading operations of Victor Bout, a Russian broker described as the head of the world’s largest arms-trafficking organization.
2003 – American warplanes bombed two anti-aircraft missile sites in southern Iraq.2004 – Iraqi police arrested No. 41 on the American military’s most-wanted list, Baath Party official Mohammed Zimam Abdul-Razaq.

About topshot

Marine Corps Vietnam Veteran, Hunter, Fisherman, Home Chef, Retired Construction Superintendent and Carpenter. A firm believer in America First and the Constitution and a Fiscal Conservative. Strong supporter of Americas Military and Political Responsibility.
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