1673 – James Needham returned to Virginia after exploring the land to the west, which would become Tennessee.
1776 – Nathan Hale was arrested in NYC by the British for spying for American rebels.
1776 – NYC burned down in the Great Fire 5 days after British took over.
1780 – General Benedict Arnold, American commander of West Point, met with British spy Major John André to hand over plans of the important Hudson River fort to the enemy. Unhappy with how General George Washington treated him and in need of money, Arnold planned to “sell” West Point for 20,000 pounds–a move that would enable the British to cut New England off from the rest of the rebellious colonies. Arnold’s treason was exposed when André was captured by American militiamen who found the incriminating plans in his stocking. Arnold received a timely warning and was able to escape to a British ship, but André was hanged as a spy on October 2, 1780. Condemned for his Revolutionary War actions by both Americans and British, Arnold lived until 1801.
1922 – Congress authorized officers of the Customs and of the Coast Guard to board and examine vessels, reaffirming authority to seize and secure vessels for security of revenue under act of March 2, 1799.
1936 – The German army held its largest maneuvers since 1914.
1936 – The Spanish fascist junta named Franco generalissimo, supreme commander.
1939 – President Roosevelt addresses a special joint session of Congress and urges the repeal of the Neutrality Act provisions embargoing arms sales to belligerent countries. “Our acts must be guided by one single hard-headed thought — keeping America out of this war,” the president said. Allowing arms to be sold on a cash-and-carry basis would be “better calculated than any other means to keep us out of war.”
1941 – With America on the verge of entering World War II, the government needed a source of extra revenue to fund the war effort. To that end, Congress passed the Revenue Act of 1941, increasing the burden on America’s taxpayers to help pay for the upcoming conflict.
1942 – The U.S. B-29 Superfortress makes its debut flight in Seattle, Washington. It was the largest bomber used in the war by any nation. The B-29 was conceived in 1939 by Gen. Hap Arnold, who was afraid a German victory in Europe would mean the United States would be devoid of bases on the eastern side of the Atlantic from which to counterattack. A plane was needed that would travel faster, farther, and higher than any then available, so Boeing set to creating the four-engine heavy bomber. The plane was extraordinary, able to carry loads almost equal to its own weight at altitudes of 30,000 to 40,000 feet. It contained a pilot console in the rear of the plane, in the event the front pilot was knocked out of commission. It also sported the first radar bombing system of any U.S. bomber. The Superfortress made its test run over the continental United States on September 21, but would not make its bombing-run debut until June 5, 1944, against Bangkok, in preparation for the Allied liberation of Burma from Japanese hands. A little more than a week later, the B-29 made its first run against the Japanese mainland. On June 14, 60 B-29s based in Chengtu, China, bombed an iron and steel works factory on Honshu Island. While the raid was less than successful, it proved to be a morale booster to Americans, who were now on the offensive. Meanwhile, the Marianas Islands in the South Pacific were being recaptured by the United States, primarily to provide air bases for their new B-29s-a perfect position from which to strike the Japanese mainland on a consistent basis. Once the bases were ready, the B-29s were employed in a long series of bombing raids against Tokyo. Although capable of precision bombing at high altitudes, the Superfortresses began dropping incendiary devices from a mere 5,000 feet, firebombing the Japanese capital in an attempt to break the will of the Axis power. One raid, in March 1945, killed more than 80,000 people. But the most famous, or perhaps infamous, use of the B-29 would come in August, as it was the only plane capable of delivering a 10,000-pound bomb–the atomic bomb. The Enola Gay and the Bock’s Car took off from the Marianas, on August 6 and 9, respectively, and flew into history.
1943 – The US 5th Army reorients to the left as the British 8th Army moves to east side of the front. German forces are withdrawing all along the front with the exception of the passes leading to Naples.
1943 – American forces on Arundel discover that the Japanese forces have been evacuated.
1944 – US Task Force 38 conducts air strikes on Japanese targets on Luzon, particularly Manila and Manila Bay. Twelve American carriers are involved.
1944 – U.S. troops of the 7th Army, invading Southern France, crossed the Meuse River.
1945 – President Truman holds a cabinet meeting to discuss the question of sharing atomic secrets with the British and particularly the Soviet governments. He chose the topic because it was Secretary of War Stimson’s last day in government service; Stimson was retiring that afternoon. In the words of Undersecretary of State Acheson, “the discussion was unworthy of the subject.” Stimson desired only a diplomatic approach, not an openhanded passing of information American scientists sought. The presumption was that the Soviets would offer a quid pro quo for the cost of the nuclear project. Instead, some cabinet members misconstrued the debate to be whether to give away the secrets. They were totally unprepared to handle this complicated subject and hardly knew the difference between an at secret and common scientific knowledge. They responded by offering their opinions in airy detail. After the discussion, and reception of papers prepared thereafter (with the exception of Stimson’s, which was prepared well in advance), the president released an ambiguous public statement.
1949 – In Germany the Allied Occupation Statute came into force. The functions of the military government were transferred to the Allied high commission. The Federal Republic of [West] Germany was created under the 3-power occupation.
1950 – X Corps, under Lieutenant General Edward M. Almond, assumed command of all U.N. forces ashore in the Inchon/Seoul area from Vice Admiral J. D. Struble’s Joint Task Force Seven.
1951 – Operation SUMMIT, the first helicopter landing of a combat unit in history, took place. It included the airlifting of a reinforced company of Marines and 17,772 pounds of cargo into the Punchbowl area.
1951 – Operation CLEAVER took place. This one-day tank and infantry raid by elements of the U.S. 24th Infantry Division at the eastern end of the Iron Triangle near Kumsong inflicted heavy losses on the communist.
1952 – USAF Captain Robinson Risner, 4th Fighter-Interceptor Wing, destroyed his fifth and sixth MiG-15 near Sinuiju to become the 20th jet ace of the Korean War.
1953 – North Korean pilot Lieutenant Ro Kim Suk landed his aircraft at Kimpo airfield outside Seoul. The Soviet Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15, powered by a jet engine superior to those then used in American fighter planes, first saw combat in Korea during November 1950, where its performance shifted the balance of air power to Russian-backed North Korea. On April 26, 1953, two U.S. Air Force B-29s dropped leaflets behind enemy lines, offering a $50,000 reward and political asylum to any pilot delivering an intact MiG-15 to American forces for study. Although Ro denied any knowledge of the bounty, he collected the reward, and American scientists were able to examine the MiG-15.
1955 – The last allied occupying troops left Austria.
1974 – US Mariner 10 made a 2nd fly-by of Mercury.
1984 – Mid East Force begins escort of U.S. flagged vessels in Persian Gulf.
1987 – A U.S. helicopter gunship disabled an Iranian vessel, the “Iran Ajr,” that was caught laying mines in the Persian Gulf; four Iranian crewmen were killed, 26 wounded and detained.
1992 – President Bush addressed the U.N. General Assembly, offering U.S. support to strengthen international peacekeeping.
1992 – Former defense secretaries Melvin Laird and James R. Schlesinger told a congressional committee the Pentagon had known American airmen were alive in Laos at the end of the Vietnam War and were not returned.
1996 – The board of all-male Virginia Military Institute voted to admit women.
1998 – In New York Wadih el Hage, a Texas American citizen who served as the personal secretary for Osama bin laden in Sudan, was indicted for lying to a Manhattan grand jury investigating bin Laden.
1998 – In Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, Mustafa Mahmoud Said Ahmen of Egypt and Rashid Saleh Hemed of Tanzania were charged with murder in connection with the bombing of the US Embassy.
2000 – A Belgrade court found Pres. Clinton and other world leaders guilty of war crimes for the 1999 NATO bombing of Yugoslavia. 14 leaders were sentenced in absentia to 20 years in prison. The 120-page indictment charged the leaders for the deaths of 546 Yugoslav army soldiers, 138 Serbian police officers and 504 civilians, including 88 children.
2001 – A US unmanned reconnaissance plane was downed in Afghanistan.
2001 – A US Taurus rocket, made by Orbital Sciences, carrying a NASA satellite failed to launch and probably plunged into the Indian ocean.
2001 – In Afghanistan the ruling Taliban rejected Pres. Bush’s ultimatum and to give up Osama bin Laden. The Taliban also threatened to hang Afghan aid workers if they communicate with their int’l. counterparts.
2001 – Terrorist suspects were arrested in Britain (4), France (7), Germany (2 warrants), Peru (3 detained) and Yemen (20 detained). Lofti Raissi, an Algerian pilot arrested in Britain, was later described as the “lead instructor” to 4 of the hijackers. Raissi was released Feb 12, 2002, for lack of evidence.
2002 – Iraq rejects U.S. efforts to secure new U.N. resolutions threatening war. Iraqi state-run radio announces Baghdad will not abide by the unfavourable new resolutions adopted by the U.N. Security Council. U.N. chief inspector Hans Blix says he expects an advance team of inspectors to be in Iraq by October 15, and some early inspections could be carried out soon afterward.
2003 – NASA’s $1.5 billion Galileo mission ended a 14-year exploration of the solar system’s largest planet and its moons with the spacecraft crashing by design into Jupiter at 108,000 mph.
2004 – The new $219 million Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian opened in Washington DC. It included some 800,000 artifacts collected by George Gustav Heye (1874-1957).
2004 – President Bush, defending his decision to invade Iraq, urged the U.N. General Assembly to stand united with the country’s struggling government.
2004 – US forces killed 6 Afghan guerrillas following a rocket attack on a helicopter.
2004 – Iran revealed that it started converting tons of raw uranium as part of a process that could be used to make nuclear arms.
2004 – A posting on an Islamic Web site claimed that the al-Qaida-linked group led by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi has slain US hostage Jack Hensley.
2004 – A Turkish construction company announced that it was halting operations in neighboring Iraq in a bid to save the lives of 10 employees kidnapped by militants.