Return to home1941 Jan 2,
The Andrews Sisters recorded what became a big hit for them, the
Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy.
1941 Jan 3, Canada & US
acquired air bases in Newfoundland with a 99 year lease.
1941 Jan 4, On the
Greek-Albanian front, the Greeks launched an attack towards Valona
from Berat to Klisura against the Italians.
1941 Jan 6, President Franklin
D. Roosevelt asked Congress to support the lend-lease plan to help
supply the Allies. In an address to Congress President Franklin
Roosevelt expressed the general world aims of the United States as
these "Four Freedoms": of speech and expression; of worship; from
want; and from fear. Oscar Cox had helped draft the Lend-Lease Act.
(HN, 1/6/99)(HNQ, 3/2/00)(WSJ, 2/18/05, p.W6)
1941 Jan 8, Robert Baden-Powell
(83), founder of the Boy Scout movement, died.
1941 Jan 9, Joan Baez, American
folk singer and Vietnam War protester, was born.
1941 Jan 9, Some 6,000 Jews
were exterminated in a pogrom in Bucharest, Romania. [see Jan 22]
1941 Jan 10, The Soviets and
the Germans agreed on the East European borders and the exchange of
1941 Jan 11, Adolf Hitler
ordered forces to be prepared to enter North Africa to assist the
Italian effort, marking the establishment of the Afrika Korps.
1941 Jan 11, Emanuel Lasker
(b.1868), German mathematician and chess player, died. In 1927 he
authored “Lasker’s Manual of Chess."
1941 Jan 13, James Joyce,
Irish-born novelist, died in Zurich, Switzerland. In 1983 Richard
Ellmann authored the 900-page "James Joyce" biography. In 1999 Edna
O'Brien authored the pocket bio "James Joyce."
(AP, 1/13/98)(SFC, 12/9/99, p.B1)
1941 Jan 15, British troops
landed in Ethiopia [and ended the Italian occupation].
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)(CNT, Nov.,1994, p.260)
1941 Jan 16, US vice admiral
Bellinger warned of an assault on Pearl Harbor.
1941 Jan 16, The US War Dept
formed the 1st Army Air Corps squadron for black cadets.
1941 Jan 20, US Pres. Franklin
D. Roosevelt was inaugurated for his 3rd term. It was the first time
any US president had been elected for more than two terms.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)
1941 Jan 20, Hitler met with
Mussolini and offered aid in Albania and Greece.
1941 Jan 21, Placido Domingo,
opera tenor (Pinkerton-Mme Butterfly), was born in Madrid, Spain.
1941 Jan 21, Richie Havens,
folk singer (Here Comes the Sun), was born in Brooklyn.
1941 Jan 21, Edwin Starr, US
singer (War), was born as Charles Hatcher.
1941 Jan 21, The United States
lifted the ban on arms to the Soviet Union.
1941 Jan 21, Australia &
Britain attacked Tobruk, Libya.
1941 Jan 21, British communist
newspaper "Daily Worker" was banned.
1941 Jan 22, British and
Australian troops captured Tobruk from Italians.
1941 Jan 22, The 1st mass
killing of Jews took place in Romania. [see Jan 9]
1941 Jan 24, Neil Diamond,
singer, actor (Jazz Singer), was born in Brooklyn, NY.
1941 Jan 27, The United States
and Great Britain began high-level military talks in Washington.
1941 Jan 28, French General
Charles DeGaulle's Free French forces sacked south Libya oasis.
1941 Jan 30, Dick Cheney was
born in Lincoln, Neb. He served as chief of staff for Pres. Ford
from 1975-1977. He was a US Rep. From 1979-1989 and served as the
Sec. of Defense for pres. George H.W. Bush from 1989-1993. From 1995
to 2000 he served as the CEO of Halliburton Corp. and in 2000 was
chosen by Gov. George W. Bush as a running mate.
(WSJ, 7/26/00, p.A28)
1941 Jan, The US War Dept.
formed an all-black flying unit that achieved fame as the Tuskegee
Airmen. On June 20 the Tuskegee program officially began with the
formation of the 99th Fighter Squadron at the Tuskegee Institute.
Their 1st mission was in June 1943. African-Americans were barred
from the Air Corps until this year, and then were shunted to
(SFC, 9/22/99, p.A24) (WSJ, 8/17/99, p.A1)(NPub,
1941 Feb 1, "Downbeat Magazine"
reported this day that Glenn Miller had inked a new three-year
contract with RCA Victor Records. The pact guaranteed Miller $750 a
side, the fattest record contract signed to that time.
(440 Int'l, 2/1/1999)
1941 Feb 3, The US Supreme
Court upheld the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, ruling that
Congress can fix minimum wages and maximum hours for US workers.
(AH, 2/06, p.14)
1941 Feb 4, The United Service
Organization (USO) was chartered, in order to provide recreation for
on-leave members of the US armed forces and their families.
1941 Roy Plunkett, chemist,
patented a product later called Teflon. He produced the substance in
1938 while trying to create a refrigerant for DuPont.
(Sm, 2/06, p.38)
1941 Feb 5, The SS Politician
wrecked off the coast of the Isle of Eriskay in the Hebrides. It
carried some 20,000 cases of whisky, which the natives hid from
customs agents. The story was told in the 1947 book “Whisky Galore"
by Compton Mackenzie. The book was made into a film in 1949.
1941 Feb 5, Andrew Barton
"Banjo" Paterson (b.1864), Australian poet and journalist, died. He
is best known for his song “Waltzing Matilda."
1941 Feb 6, The RAF cleared the
way as British took Benghazi, Libya, trapping thousands of Italians.
1941 Feb 6, Maximilien Luce
(b.1858), French anarchist and Neo-Impressionist painter, died.
1941 Feb 7, Frank Sinatra and
Tommy Dorsey Orch recorded "Everything Happens to Me."
1941 Feb 8, Japanese armored
barges crossed the Strait of Johore to attack Singapore.
1941 Feb 9, British troops
conquered El Agheila.
1941 Feb 9, Nazi collaborators
destroyed the pro-Jewish cafe Alcazar Amsterdam. Alcazar had refused
to hang "No Entry for Jews" signs in front.
1941 Feb 10, London severed
diplomatic relations with Romania. Romania’s indigenous fighter, the
IAR 80, saw service in defense of its homeland and against the
1941 Feb 10, Iceland was
attacked by German planes.
1941 Feb 11, Lt-Gen Erwin
Rommel arrived in Tripoli.
1941 Feb 14, "Reflections in a
Golden Eye" by Carson McCullers was first published.
1941 Feb 14, German Afrika
Korps landed in Tripoli, Libya.
1941 Feb 15, Duke Ellington 1st
recorded "Take the A Train."
(440 Int’l., 2/15/99)
1941 Feb 15, K Reinmuth
discovered asteroids #1561 Fricke & #1785 Wurm.
(440 Int’l., 2/15/99)
1941 Feb 16, The Italians lost
their last position in the Sudan.
1941 Feb 16, Kim Jong Il, son
of Kim Il Sung, was born in the far East of the Soviet Union. He
took over leadership of North Korea from his father in 1994.
1941 Feb 17, The SS Gairsoppa
was torpedoed by a German U-boat. The British ship was carrying some
219 tons of silver when it sank in the North Atlantic some 300 miles
(490 km) off the Irish coast. Of the 85 people on board, only one
survived. In 2011 Florida-based Odyssey Marine Exploration confirmed
the identity and location of the ship. In 2012 Odyssey Marine
Exploration said it had succeeded in removing about 43% of the
1941 Feb 19, George Orwell
published his essay “The Lion and the Unicorn: Socialism and the
English Genius," expressing his opinions on the situation in wartime
(Econ, 2/2/13, SR
1941 Feb 19, Nazi police were
attacked and driven away from Koco, Amsterdam by young Jews. Nazis
raided Amsterdam and rounded up 429 young Jews for deportation.
1941 Feb 19, Hamilton
Harty (61), composer, conductor, died.
1941 Feb 20, The U.S. sent war
planes to the Pacific. General George C. Kenney pioneered aerial
warfare strategy and tactics in the Pacific theater.
1941 Feb 20, The 1st transport
of Jews to concentration camps left Plotsk, Poland.
1941 Feb 20, Nazis ordered
Polish Jews barred from using public transportation.
1941 Feb 22, Arthur T "Bomber"
Harris became British Air Marshal.
1941 Feb 22, IG Farben started
building Buna-Werke in the Auschwitz extermination camp.
1941 Feb 26, Cowboys' Amateur
Association of America was organized in California.
1941 Feb 26, British took the
Somali capital in East Africa.
1941 Feb 26, Vichy-France made
religious education in school mandatory.
1941 Feb 26, Utrecht and
Zaandam struck against raid on Jews.
1941 Feb 26, Jan Keizer Zaanse,
February striker, was shot to death.
1941 Feb 27, Jewish musicians
came together in Berlin and performed Gustav Mahler’s Second
Symphony. In 2001 Martin Goldsmith authored "The Inextinguishable
Symphony: A True Story of Music and Love in Nazi Germany."
(SSFC, 4/8/01, BR p.5)
1941 Mar 1, W47NV, the 1st US
FM radio station to broadcast with a commercial license, went on the
air in Nashville, TN.
1941 Mar 1, Elmer Layden became
the 1st NFL commissioner.
1941 Mar 1, Himmler inspected
the Auschwitz concentration camp.
1941 Mar 1, Bulgaria joined
the Axis as the Nazis occupy Sofia.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)(HN, 3/1/98)
1941 Mar 3, Netherlands
NSB-leader Mussert visited Göring in Berlin.
1941 Mar 3, Moscow denounced
the Axis rule in Bulgaria.
1941 Mar 4, 18 Geuzen
resistance fighters were sentenced to death in The Hague.
1941 Mar 4, Serbian Prince Paul
1941 Mar 5, Britain severed all
relation with Bulgaria and prepared for an air attack on Bulgaria.
1941 Mar 6, John Gutzon de la
Mothe Borglum (b.1867), sculptor (Mount Rushmore), died.
1941 Mar 7, British troops
invaded Abyssinia (Ethiopia).
1941 Mar 7, 50,000 British
soldiers landed in Greece.
1941 Mar 7, Gunther Prien,
German U-boat commander and war hero (U-47), died in battle.
1941 Mar 8, Martial law was
proclaimed in Holland in order to extinguish any anti-Nazi protests.
1941 Mar 9, Italians launched a
large-scale counterattack across the center of the front against
Greece, which, despite the superiority of the Italian armed forces,
failed. After one week and 12,000 casualties, Mussolini called off
the counterattack and left Albania 12 days later.
1941 Mar 10, Vichy France
threatened to use its navy if Britain would not allow food to reach
1941 Mar 11, The Lend-Lease Act
was passed by the US Congress. It authorized the president to send
aid to nations whose defense he considered essential to US defense.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)(TMC, 1994, p.1941)
1941 Mar 13, Hitler issued an
edict calling for an invasion of the USSR
1941 Mar 14, Xavier Cugat and
his Orchestra recorded "Babalu."
1941 Mar 15, A blizzard in
North Dakota killed 151. [see Mar 16]
1941 Mar 15, Philippine
Airlines maid its maiden flight from Manila to Baguio.
(SFC, 9/24/98, p.A19)
1941 Mar 16, Chuck Woolery, TV
game show host, was born in Kentucky. He hosted Love Connection from
1983 to 1995.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chuck_Woolery)(SSFC, 7/6/08, p.B6)
1941 Mar 16, A blizzard hit
North Dakota and Minnesota killing 60. [see Mar 15]
1941 Mar 17, The National
Gallery of Art opened in Washington, D.C.
(AP, 3/17/97)(HN, 3/17/98)
1941 Mar 19, Jimmy Dorsey and
Orchestra recorded "Green Eyes" and "Maria Elena" for Decca Records.
1941 Mar 20, Nazi
German-Yugoslav pact was drawn.
1941 Mar 20, D.A. van den
Bosch, anti-Nazi clergyman (Amersfoort Camp), died.
1941 Mar 21, The last Italian
post in East Libya fell to the British.
1941 Mar 22, The Grand Coulee
Dam in Washington state went into operation.
1941 Mar 24, Joseph H. Taylor,
Jr., radio astronomer and physicist, was born.
1941 Mar 24, German troops
occupied El Agheila, Libya.
1941 Mar 25, Carolina Paprika
Mills in Dillon, SC, was incorporated.
1941 Mar 25, Yugoslavia joined
the Axis powers.
1941 Mar 26, Clinton Richard
Dawkins, British ethologist, evolutionary biologist and popular
science author, was born. He came to prominence with his 1976 book
“The Selfish Gene," which popularized the gene-centered view of
evolution and introduced the term meme.
1941 Mar 26, In Yugoslavia the
pro-Axis Prince Paul was toppled in a palace revolution in Belgrade
and Prince Peter was put in as head of state.
1941 Mar 27, Britain leased
defense bases in Trinidad to the U.S. for a period of 99 years.
1941 Mar 27, Tokeo Yoshikawa
arrived in Oahu, Hawaii, to begin spying for Japan on the U.S. Fleet
at Pearl Harbor.
1941 Mar 27, Hitler signed
Directive 27 for an assault on Yugoslavia.
1941 Mar 28, The Italian fleet
was routed by the British at the Battle of Matapan off the coast of
Greece. More than 2,000 Italian sailors died and five Italian ships
were destroyed. Mavis Batey (1921-2013) of British intelligence had
decoded a message that signaled the attack three days earlier.
(HN, 3/28/99)(SFC, 11/29/13, p.C4)
1941 Mar 28, Novelist and
critic Virginia Woolf (1882-1941), born as Virginia Stephen, died in
Lewes, England. She feared a mental breakdown and threw herself into
the River Ouse near her home in Sussex. Her body was never found.
She was an English novelist, essayist and critic and wrote standing
up. In 1997 "Art and Affection, A Life of Virginia Woolf" was
published. In 1997 a biography by Hermione Lee was published.
(WUD, 1994, p.1643)(SFC, 6/23/96, zone 1
p.2)(SFEM, 1/12/97, BR p.7)(AP, 3/28/97)(SFEC, 6/22/97, BR p.8)(HN,
1941 Mar 29, Terence Hill,
actor (Super Fuzz, They Call Me Trinity), was born in Venice, Italy.
1941 Mar 29, The British sank
five Italian warships off the Peloponnesus coast in the
Mediterranean. Captain Johnnie Walker was the Royal Navy’s most
effective weapon against the German U-boat menace.
1941 Mar 30, Graeme Edge, rock
drummer (Moody Blues-Your Wildest Dreams), was born in England.
1941 Mar 30, The U.S. seized
Italian, German and Danish ships in 16 ports.
1941 Mar 30, The German Afrika
Korps under General Erwin Rommel began its first offensive against
British forces in Libya.
1941 Mar 31, Germany began a
counter offensive in North Africa.
1941 Mar, Timely Comics, the
predecessor of Marvel Comics, introduced the "Captain America"
1941 Apr 1, Lillian Hellman's
"Watch on the Rhine," premiered in NYC.
1941 Apr 1, The US Navy took
over San Francisco Bay’s Treasure Island.
(SFC, 5/9/97, p.A28)
1941 Apr 1, The first
contract for advertising on a commercial FM radio station began on
W71NY in New York City.
1941 Apr 1, Nazi's forbade Jews
access to cafes in Paris.
1941 Apr 2, USS Hornet with
Jimmy Doolittle's B-25s departed from SF.
1941 Apr 3, Walton's overture
"Scapino," premiered in Chicago.
1941 Apr 3, Churchill warned
Stalin of German invasion.
1941 Apr 3, Andre Michelin
(88), French tire manufacturer, died. In 2004 Herbert Lottman
authored "The Michelin Men: Driving an Empire," the story of Andre
and Edouard Michelin.
(MC, 4/3/02)(WSJ, 2/20/04, p.W5)
1941 Apr 3, Pal Teleki-von Szek
(61), PM Hungary (1920-21, 39-41), committed suicide.
1941 Apr 4, Field Marshal Erwin
Rommel captured the British held town of Benghazi in North Africa.
1941 Apr 5, German commandos
secured docks along the Danube River in preparation for Germany's
invasion of the Balkans.
1941 Apr 6, Italian-held Addis
Ababa surrendered to British and Ethiopian forces.
1941 Apr 6, German Foreign
Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop gave orders for the attack on
Yugoslavia to roll forward. Hitler ordered the Luftwaffe to bomb
Belgrade prior to the final drive into the capital. From August 6 to
10, more than 500 bombing sorties were flown against Belgrade,
inflicting more than 17,500 fatalities. Most of the government
officials fled, and the Yugoslav army began to collapse. German
Luftwaffe Marshall Alexander Lohr commanded a surprise air attack on
Belgrade and 17,000 died. Lohr was later tried and executed for the
p.A10)(WSJ, 5/20/99, p.A21)
1941 Apr 6, German troops
invaded Yugoslavia and Greece. Italian and Albanian forces attacked
and jointly occupied Yugoslavia. Germany, with support of Italy and
other allies defeated Greece and Yugoslavia.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)(SFC, 4/5/97, p.A20)(www,
1941 Apr 6-1941 Apr 7, The
Luftwaffe delivered a heavy blow to the British expedition when
German bombers seriously damaged Piraeus, the port of Athens sinking
seven merchant ships, sixty lighters and 25 caiques.
1941 Apr 9, The PGA established
a Golf Hall of Fame.
1941 Apr 9, In Czestochowa,
Poland, a ghetto for Jews was created. By the end of WW II some
45,000 of Czestochowa's Jews were murdered by the Germans, almost
the entire Jewish community living there.
1941 Apr 10, Paul Theroux,
author (The Great Railway Bazaar), was born.
1941 Apr 10, U.S. troops
occupied Greenland to prevent Nazi infiltration.
1941 Apr 11, Ellen Goodman,
Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist, was born.
1941 Apr 11, Germany bombers
blitzed Coventry, England.
1941 Apr 11, The Jewish Weekly
newspaper was taken control by Nazis.
1941 Apr 12, Vichy-France's
head of government Admiral Dalan consulted with Hitler.
1941 Apr 13, Margaret Price,
soprano (Pamlina-Die Zauberflote), was born in Tredegar, Wales.
1941 Apr 13, German troops
captured Belgrade, Yugoslavia. Hitler soon installed Gen. Milan
Nedic as a quisling leader. Nedic proceeded to wipe out the Jewish
community of Serbia. In 1997 Philip Cohen wrote "Serbia's Secret
War: Propaganda and the Deceit of History."
(HN, 4/13/99)(WSJ, 5/7/99, p.A18)
1941 Apr 13, There was a heavy
German assault on Tobruk.
1941 Apr 13, A Russian-Japan
no-attack treaty went into effect.
1941 Apr 14, Julie Christie,
actress (Dr Zhivago), was born in Assam, India.
1941 Apr 14, Pete Rose,
Cincinnati Reds, (most hits in majors), was born.
1941 Apr 14, The 1st massive
German raid in Paris rounded up 3,600 Jews.
1941 Apr 15, 1st helicopter
flight of 1 hour duration took place at Stratford, Ct.
1941 Apr 17, Office of Price
Administration OPA formed to handle war time rationing.
1941 Apr 17, British troop
landed in Iraq.
1941 Apr 17, Yugoslavia
surrendered to Germany ending 11 days of futile resistance against
the invading German Wehrmacht. More than 300,000 Yugoslav officers
and soldiers were taken prisoner. Italian and Albanian forces
attacked and jointly occupied Yugoslavia.
(SFC, 4/5/97, p.A20)(AP, 4/17/97)(MC, 4/17/02)
1941 Apr 18, In the village of
Audrini, Latvia, Boleslavs Maikovskis, chief of police for the
second precinct of Rezekne, ordered the arrest of all the 200-300
people in the village after Soviet partisans shot and killed several
policemen. He also ordered every house to be burned down. 200
villagers were then executed, but he claimed to have nothing to do
with the slaughter. He was charged with mass murder in Germany and
his trial began in 1988 but in Feb 1994 the court ruled that he was
too frail to continue.
(SFC, 5/8/96, p.C-2)
1941 Apr 19, Michel Roux, chef
de cuisine, was born.
1941 Apr 19, B. Brecht's 1939
play "Mutter Courage und ihre Kinder (Mother Courage and her
Children)," premiered in Zurich.
1941 Apr 20, Joni Evans,
publisher of Simon & Schuster, Random House, was born in NYC.
1941 Apr 20, Ryan O'Neal, actor
(Peyton Place, Paper Moon, was born in LA, Calif.
1941 Apr 21, Greece surrendered
to Nazi Germany.
1941 Apr 23, Greece Army
surrendered to Nazis; RAF flew Greek king George II to Egypt.
1941 Apr 24, British army began
the evacuation of Greece.
1941 Apr 24, Dutch Prince
Bernhard became an RAF pilot.
1941 Apr 26, First organ played
at a baseball stadium, Chicago, Illinois.
1941 Apr 27, Judith Blegen,
opera singer (Papagena-Magic Flute), was born in Missoula, Mont.
1941 Apr 27, The Greek army
capitulated to the Germans. Greece and the Greek islands were
secured by Hitler.
(SFC,10/29/97, p.A23)(HN, 4/27/98)
1941 Apr 28, Ann-Margret,
actress (Bye Bye Birdie, Tommy), was born in Valsjobya, Sweden.
1941 Apr 28, Last British
troops in Greece surrendered.
1941 Apr, Hungary under Admiral
Miklos Horthy, entered WWII as an ally of Germany.
1941 May 1, The motion picture
"Citizen Kane," directed and starring Orson Welles (24), premiered
in New York. Randolph Hearst attempted to bury the film by banning
all advertising in his newspapers. One in five Americans read a
Hearst paper at this time. Citizen Kane won an Academy Award. A PBS
special from the American Experience covered the story in 1996. His
biography, "Rosebud: The Story of Orson Welles" by David Thompson,
was published in 1996.
(WSJ, 1/25/96, p.A-16)(TMC, 1994, p.1941)(SFC,
6/9/96, BR p.15)
1941 May 1, General Mills
introduced Cheerioats, later renamed Cheerios. It was made possible
by the development of the “puffing gun" invented earlier by Lester
1941 May 1, A German assault
took place on Tobruk.
1941 May 2, Martin Bormann
succeeded Rudolf Hess as Hitler's deputy.
1941 May 2, Hostilities broke
out between British forces in Iraq and that country's pro-German
faction under PM Rashid Ali. There was a pro-Axis coup led by the
army. Quickly overthrown by British troops, a pro-British regime
under PM Nuri al-Said was installed, declaring war on the Axis
powers in 1943.
(HN, 5/2/99)(HNQ, 6/20/99)(SFC, 9/24/02, p.A10)
1941 May 3, There was a German
air raid on Liverpool.
1941 May 3, Pierre Seel (17)
was arrested in Alsace-Lorraine by the German Gestapo and tortured
for 10 days for his homosexuality. In 1994 he authored the memoir
“I, Pierre Seel, Deported Homosexual."
(SFC, 12/2/05, p.B5)
1941 May 5, A Pulitzer prize
was awarded to Robert E Sherwood (There shall be no night).
1941 May 5, Emperor Haile
Selassie returned to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
1941 May 6, Ghena Dimitrova,
soprano (Nabucco), was born.
1941 May 6, Bob Hope (b. May
29, 1903) began broadcasting his first USO radio show from March
Field at Riverside, Ca. The United Service Organizations (USO) began
operations this year and provided free coffee, donuts, and
entertainment to US military forces. The organization is supported
entirely by private citizens and corporations.
(SFC, 5/28/97, p.D5)(HN, 5/6/98)(SFEC, 9/8/96,
1941 May 6, Dictator Josef
Stalin assumed the Soviet premiership, replacing Vyacheslav M.
1941 May 7, Glenn Miller and
His Orchestra recorded "Chattanooga Choo Choo" for RCA Victor. It
became the first gold record in history.
(AP, 5/7/99)(SFC, 5/31/00, p.A23)
1941 May 7, British House of
Commons voted for Churchill (477-3).
1941 May 9, The German
submarine U-110 was captured at sea by the Royal Navy, revealing
considerable Enigma material. Enigma was the German machine used to
encrypt messages during World War II.
(HN, 5/9/99)(HNQ, 8/30/00)
1941 May 10, England’s House of
Commons was destroyed by a German air raid.
1941 May 10, Rudolf Hess
(d.93), a deputy of Adolf Hitler, parachuted into Scotland to see
the Duke of Hamilton on what he claimed was a peace mission. Hess
ended up serving a life sentence at Spandau prison until 1987, when
he apparently committed suicide.
(AP, 5/10/97)(ON, 4/02, p.7)
1941 May 11, London’s
Bridgewater House was bombed. A major work by French painter Paul
Delaroche, "Charles I Insulted by Cromwell's Soldiers" (1837)
depicting the British monarch shortly before his execution in 1649,
was thought to have been virtually destroyed. In 2009 it was
unrolled and found to be in good condition.
1941 May 11, The 1st
Messerschmidt 109F was shot down above England.
1941 May 12, Anthony Newman,
harpsichordist, organist (Bhajeb), was born in LA, Calif.
1941 May 13, Ritchie Valens,
singer (Donna, La Bamba), was born.
1941 May 13, Martin Bormann was
named head of Nazi Party Chancellery in Germany.
1941 May 14, French Admiral
Francois Darlan, leader of the armed forces of Vichy France,
broadcast to the citizens that only within the confines of the Third
Reich can France thrive.
1941 May 14, Some 3,600
Parisian Jews were arrested.
1941 May 15, Lainie Kazan,
singer, actress (Lust in the Dust, Beaches), was born in Brooklyn.
1941 May 15, Joe DiMaggio
started his 56-game hitting streak. The Yanks lost 13-1. In 2011
Kostya Kennedy authored “56: Joe DiMaggio and the Last Magic Number
1941 May 15, 1st British
1941 May 15, All preparations
for the German attack against Russia in Operation Barbarossa were to
1941 May 15, Nazi occupiers in
Netherlands forbade Jewish music.
1941 May 16, The last great
German air attack on Great Britain was at Birmingham.
1941 May 18, An Egyptian
1941 May 18, Italian army under
General Aosta surrendered to Britain in Ethiopia.
1941 May 19, Jane Brody, food
and health writer, was born.
1941 May 19, Nora Ephron,
screenwriter and director, was born.
1941 May 19, German occupiers
in Holland forbade bicycle taxis.
1941 May 19, The new 823.5-foot
Nazi battleship Bismarck left Gdynia, Poland, under the command of
Commander Gunther Lutjens.
1941 May 20, Germany invaded
Crete by air.
1941 May 21, The first U.S.
ship, the SS Robin Moor, was sunk by a U-boat.
1941 May 22, British troops
1941 May 24, Bob Dylan (Robert
Allen Zimmerman), singer and songwriter, was born in Minnesota. He
is famous for his songs "Hard Rain's Gonna Fall," and "Blowin' in
(SFC, 8/26/97, p.E3)(HN, 5/24/99)
1941 May 24, The German
battleship Bismarck sank the British dreadnought HMS Hood in the
North Atlantic. 1416 died with only three survivors.
(AP, 5/24/97)(HN, 5/24/99)(ON, 10/09, p.2)
1941 May 25, Some 5,000 drowned
in a storm at Ganges Delta region in India.
1941 May 26, American Flag
House, the Betsy Ross Home, was given to the city of Phila.
1941 May 26, Ark Royal airplane
sighted the German battleship Bismarck.
1941 May 26, German occupiers
began youth labor.
1941 May 27, Amid rising world
tensions, President Roosevelt proclaimed an "unlimited national
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)(AP, 5/27/97)
1941 May 27, The German
battleship Bismarck was sunk off France by British naval and air
forces with a loss of more than 2,100 lives. British ships rescued 4
officers and 106 of the crew. A German fishing vessel was reported
to have rescued another 100 men.
5/27/07)(ON, 10/09, p.5)
1941 May 29, Roy Crewsdon,
rocker (Freddie & The Dreamers), was born in Manchester.
1941 May 30, Serbia enacted
1941 May, Congresswoman Edith
Nourse Rogers introduced a house resolution, H.R. 4906, to establish
a civilian organization known as the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps
(WAAC), but the legislation sat undiscussed until after Pearl
Harbor. Several women’s groups were organized after America entered
the war and in July 1943, the WASPs came into being.
1941 May, Germany dropped 1,500
paratroopers on Crete in the first successful airborne invasion in
(TL, 1988, p.112)
1941 Jun 1, British troops
occupied Baghdad, Iraq.
1941 Jun 1, Germany banned all
1941 Jun 1, The German Army
completed the capture of Crete as the Allied evacuation ended.
1941 Jun 2, William Guest,
singer (Gladys Knight Show), was born in Atlanta, Ga.
1941 Jun 2, Stacy Keach, actor
(Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer), was born in Savannah, Ga.
1941 Jun 2, Charlie Watts,
drummer (Rolling Stones-Brown Sugar), was born.
1941 Jun 2, Baseball’s "Iron
Horse," Lou Gehrig, died in New York of a degenerative disease,
amyotrophic lateral sclerosis at 37. The best book on Gehrig is
"Iron Horse" by Ray Robinson. In 2005 Jonathan Eig authored
“Luckiest Man: The Life and Death of Lou Gehrig."
(AP, 6/2/97)(Econ, 5/7/05, p.79)
1941 Jun 3, German occupiers
stamped "J" on Jewish passports.
1941 Jun 4, Republic of Croatia
ordered all Jews to wear a star with the letter Z.
1941 Jun 4, Wilhelm II von
Hohenzollern (b.1859), the last German emperor (1888-1918), died in
1941 Jun 5, In China some 1,500
civilians died from suffocation in a single air raid shelter in
Chongqing, the provisional capital until the end of the war with
(Econ, 8/15/15, p.36)
1941 Jun 6, The U.S. government
authorized the seizure of foreign ships in U.S. ports.
1941 Jun 7, Jaime Laredo,
violinist (Queen Elisabeth of Belgium prize 1959), was born in
1941 Jun 7, Whirlaway won the
Belmont Stakes & the triple crown.
1941 Jun 9, Production began on
“The Maltese Falcon," starring Humphrey Bogart as detective Sam
Spade. The film was directed by John Huston (34).
(SFCM, 2/6/05, p.10)
1941 Jun 13, Thousands of
Jewish community leaders were deported to Siberia as part of the
general purge. The Soviet Union, which had occupied the former
Romanian province a year earlier, loaded 22,600 Moldovans on cargo
trains bound for Siberia, where the deportees were used for forced
(WSJ, 1/2/02, p.A18)(AP, 6/13/06)
1941 Jun 14, In Latvia some
15,000 people were rounded up in one night and sent to Siberia.
(BN, 10/96, p.2)(BN, 10/97, p.1)
1941 Jun 14, In Lithuania the
Russian secret police gathered up some 40,000 men, women and
children and exiled them to Siberia in cattle cars. This was the
first of many shipments. Arrests and deportations totaled some
(WP, 6/29/96, p.A16)(Dr, 7/96, V1#1, p.3)
1941 Jun 16, The new Washington
National Airport opened southwest of DC. In 1945, Congress passed a
law that established the airport was legally within Virginia but
under the jurisdiction of the federal government. In 1998 it was
renamed Ronald Reagan National Airport.
1941 Jun 18, Joe Louis KO’d
Billy Conn in 13 for the heavyweight boxing title.
1941 Jun 18, Turkey signed a
peace treaty with Nazi Germany.
1941 Jun 19, US president
Roosevelt signed Two Ocean Navy Expansion Act.
1941 Jun 19, Cheerios Cereal
was invented, O-shaped cereal 1/2-inch diameter, .0025 ounce, 400=1
serving; first called Cheerie Oats.
1941 Jun 19, Romania ordered
Jews to evacuate Darabani.
1941 Jun 20, U.S. Army Air
Forces was established, replacing the Army Air Corps.
(HN, 6/20/98)(WSJ, 8/17/99, p.A1)
1941 Jun 22, Ed Bradley, CBS
news correspondent and one of the hosts of "Sixty Minutes," was
1941 Jun 22, Estonians started
armed resistance against Soviet occupation.
1941 Jun 22, Finland invaded
Karelia. When Germany attacked the Soviet Union in summer 1941,
Finland joined in and began re-taking the lost territory.
1941 Jun 22, German troops
invaded Russia and thereby violated the 1939 Russo-German
non-aggression pact. Under the codename Barbarossa, Germany invaded
the Soviet Union, the largest invasion of another country in
history. In 2005 Constantine Pleshakov authored “Stalin’s Folly,"
and David E. Murphy authored "What Stalin Knew." Both provide
accounts of the invasion and Stalin’s refusal to acknowledge warning
(AP, 6/22/97)(HN, 6/22/98)(WSJ, 6/22/05, p.D12)
1941 Jun 22, Germany occupied
the Baltic states.
1941 Jun 23, The German army
entered Kovno (Kaunas), Lithuania.
(WSJ, 1/19/08, p.W8)
1941 Jun 23, Juozas
Ambrzevicius (Juozas Brazaitis), one of the leaders of the
Lithuanian Activist Front (LAF), began serving as the acting PM of
the Provisional Government of Lithuania and continued to August 5,
1941. He died in exile in 1974. He published memoirs “All Alone"
(Lithuanian: Vienų vieni) in 1964 under the name of N. E. Sudūvis.
1941 Jun 24, President Franklin
Roosevelt pledged all possible support to the Soviet Union.
1941 Jun 24, The entire Jewish
male population of Gorzhdy, Lithuania, was exterminated.
1941 Jun 24, Germans advanced
into Russia and took Vilnius, Brest-Litovsk & Kaunas.
1941 Jun 25, Joe DiMaggio ran
his hitting streak to 45 straight games.
1941 Jun 25, Germans invaded
Dubno, Poland, and encouraged the Ukrainians to do whatever they
want to 12,000 Jews living there.
1941 Jun 25, Finland declared
war on the Soviet Union.
1941 Jun 25-26, Russians
counter attacked at Rovno, Poland.
1941 Jun 26, In Belarus Soviet
NKVD mass-executed prisoners from Minsk in the nearby Tsagelnya
forest. The wooden statue Mourning Ange, by sculptor Gennady
Matusevich, was later erected at the location. Commemorative events
are held every year in June. In 1942 Jonas Petruitis authored “Kaip
jie mus sušaudė" (How They Shot Us Down).
1941 Jun 26, Finland entered WW
II against Russia.
1941 Jun 26, Lithuanian
fascists massacred 2,300 Jews in Kovno.
1941 Jun 26, In Norway an
adviser to collaborationist leader Vidkun Quisling suggested in a
letter, four days after Hitler invaded the Soviet Union, that
northern Russia would be better used by Germanic peoples because
Slavic peoples "don't know how to make use of the land." The
document was not made public until 2010.
1941 Jun 28, German and
Romanian soldiers kill 11,000 Jews in Kishinev.
1941 Jun 28, German troops
occupied Galicia, Poland.
1941 Jun 29, Stokely Carmichael
(later Kwame Ture), African-American civil rights leader, was born
in Port-of-Spain and spent his first 11 years there.
(SFC, 11/16/98, p.A7)(HN, 6/29/98)
1941 Jun 29, Nazi divisions in
a surprise assault made sweeping advances toward Leningrad, Moscow,
and Kiev. Joseph Stalin had ignored warnings that Hitler would
betray the 1939 Nazi-Soviet non-aggression pact. Over 500,000 square
miles of Russian territory were taken in the first two months of the
1941 Jun 29, Polish statesman,
pianist and composer Ignace Jan Paderewski died in New York at age
(AP, 6/29/97)(SFC, 1/28/99, p.E3)
1941 Jun 30, Charles E. Hughes
(1862-1948), Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court, retired. He
expanded freedom of the press and ruled against some of FDR’s New
Deal Legislation. Hughes served 2 terms on the court, 1910-1916 and
1941 Jun, President Franklin D.
Roosevelt froze German and Italian assets in the United States.
1941 Jun, Former
Lithuanian Pres. Aleksandras Stulginskis and his wife were arrested
by the Soviet NKVD and deported to a gulag in the Krasnoyarsk
region. His wife was deported to the Komi area. After World War II
in 1952 he was officially sentenced by the Soviet authorities to 25
years in prison for his anti-socialist and clerical policies in
pre-war Lithuania. Released after Joseph Stalin's death in 1956, he
was allowed to emigrate, yet he refused and returned to Lithuanian
1941 Jun, In the northeastern
city of Iasi, Romania, up to 12,000 people are believed to have died
as Romanian and German soldiers swept from house to house to killing
Jews. Those who did not die were systematically beaten, put in
cattle wagons in stifling heat and taken to a small town, where what
happened to them would be concealed. Of the 120 people on the train,
just 24 survived. In 2010 a mass grave was found containing the
bodies of an estimated 100 Jews killed by Romanian troops in a
forest near the town of Popricani, about 350 km northeast of
Bucharest. It contained the bodies of men, women and children who
were shot in 1941.
(AP, 6/14/03)(AP, 11/5/10)
1941 Jul 1, Commercial black
and white television broadcasting began in the US under approval by
the FCC. NBC’s New York station was the 1st to transition from radio
to TV. “Truth or Consequences" with host Ralph Edwards became the
1st commercial TV show for NBC. WW II disrupted TV’s progress.
“Truth or Consequences" prospered on radio and returned to TV in
(http://www.tvhistory.tv/History%20of%20TV.htm)(SFC, 11/17/05, p.B5)
1941 Jul 3, Harlan Fiske Stone
(1872-1946) was sworn in as Chief Justice on the US Supreme Court.
1941 Jul 3, German soldiers
arrive in Kolomiya, (later part of Ukraine) which belonged to Poland
at this time, and tacked up posters the declared in three languages
"Death to All Jews." Blanca Rosenberg (d.1998) wrote a memoir in
1993, "To Tell at Last," that described how she survived the
(SFC, 9/29/98, p.C2)
1941 Jul 4, Howard Florey &
Norman Heatley meet for 1st time, 11 days later they successfully
1941 Jul 4, Latvia partisans
shot 416 Jews dead.
1941 Jul 4, Politburo of
Yugoslav communist party reorganized.
1941 Jul 5, German troops
reached the Dnieper River in the Soviet Union.
1941 Jul 6, German planes
attacked the SS Devon off the east coast of England. Reginald
Earnshaw (14) died in the attack after serving for several months.
In 2010 he was hailed as the youngest known British service casualty
in World War II.
1941 Jul 7, Although a neutral
country, the United States sent troops to occupy Iceland to keep it
out of Germany’s hands.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)(HN, 7/7/98)
1941 Jul 7, Nazis executed
5,000 Jews in Kovno, Lithuania.
1941 Jul 8, Twenty B-17s flew
in their first mission with the Royal Air Force over Wilhelmshaven,
1941 Jul 8, All Jews living in
Baltic States were obligated to wear Star of David.
1941 Jul 10, Jelly Roll Morton
(b.1885 as Ferdinand Joseph Le Menthe), jazz musician, died in Los
Angeles, Ca. He was a virtuoso pianist, bandleader and composer who
some call the first true composer of jazz music. Morton was a
colorful character who liked to generate publicity for himself by
bragging. His business card referred to him as the "Creator of Jazz
and Swing." He was born September 20, 1890 in the Creole of
Color community in the Faubourg Marigny neighborhood of downtown New
Orleans, Louisiana. He took the name "Morton" by Anglicizing the
name of his step-father, Mouton. In 2003 Howard Reich and William
Gaines authored "Jelly's Blues: The Life, Music and Redemption of
Jelly Roll Morton." In 2005 Rounder Records released an 8-CD set
titled “Jelly Roll Morton: The Complete Library of Congress
Recordings by Alan Lomax."
1941 Jul 10, In Jedwabne,
Poland, some 300-400 Jews were herded into a barn by the local
villagers and burned to death. In 1949 a communist-era court
convicted 12 Poles in the massacre, saying they assisted German
forces in the killings. In 2001 Jan Tomasz authored "Neighbors: The
Destruction of the Jewish Community in Jedwabne." According to
Gross, some 1,600 Jews were killed in Jedwabne.
(SFC, 3/16/01, p.A16)(SFC, 3/31/01, p.A12)(AP,
1941 Jul 11(Jun 11), The 2nd
great roundup of Jews of Amsterdam took place.
1941 Jul 11(Jun 11),
Vichy-French planes bombed Tel Aviv and killed 20 Jews.
1941 Jul 12, Moscow was bombed
by the German Luftwaffe for the first time.
1941 Jul 13, Britain and the
Soviet Union signed a mutual aid pact, providing the means for
Britain to send war materiel to the Soviet Union.
1941 Jul 14, Vichy French
Foreign Legionaries signed an armistice in Damascus, allowing them
to join the Free French Foreign Legion.
1941 Jul 14, 6,000 Lithuanian
Jews were exterminated at Viszalsyan Camp.
1941 Jul 16, Dag Solstad,
Norwegian novelist and playwright, was born.
1941 Jul 17, The longest
hitting streak in baseball history ended when the Cleveland Indians
pitchers held NY Yankee Joe DiMaggio, the Yankee Clipper, hitless
for the first time in 57 games. His hitting streak ended with 56
(www.baseball-almanac.com/feats/feats3.shtml)(SFC, 3/9/99, p.A10)
1941 Jul 17, Brigadier-General
Brehon Somervell gathered a small group of officer’s from the army’s
construction division and told them they were to build a single
headquarters to house the entire war department, then scattered over
sites, in Virginia.
(Econ, 6/30/07, p.93)
1941 Jul 18, SS troops drowned
40 Jews in Dvina River in Belorussia.
1941 Jul 19, British Prime
Minister Winston Churchill launched his "V for Victory" campaign in
Europe. The BBC World Service began regular broadcasting
throughout Europe with the opening four notes of Beethoven's
Fifth Symphony, which in Morse Code spell V for "Victory."
(AP, 7/19/97)(MC, 7/19/02)
1941 Jul 21, France accepted
Japan’s demand for military control of Indochina.
1941 Jul 21, Himmler ordered
the building of the Majdanek concentration camp. The camp was built
in eastern Poland as a principal site to exterminate Jews. It
contained 7 gas chambers.
(SFC, 3/5/98, p.A14)(MC, 7/21/02)
1941 Jul 21, 200 Jewish Torahs
were burned in Ukraine.
1941 Jul 22, George Clinton,
American musician and the principal architect of P-Funk was born in
North Carolina. He was the mastermind of the bands Parliament and
Funkadelic during the 1970s and early 1980s.
1941 Jul 23, Douglas Bader
(1910-1982), legless British RAF pilot, was shot down over France
and captured by the Germans. He was liberated when the US First Army
arrived on April 16, 1945. The 1956 film “Reach for the Sky" was
based on the 1954 book by Paul Brickhill: “Reach for the Sky: The
Story of Douglas Bader, Hero of the Battle of Britain."
(ON, 9/05, p.9)
1941 Jul 23, German and
Romanian troops reoccupied Moldova as part of Operation Barbarossa.
(WSJ, 1/2/02, p.A18)
1941 Jul 24, The U.S.
government denounced Japanese actions in Indochina.
1941 Jul 24, Nazis massacred
the entire Jewish population of Grodz, Lithuania.
1941 Jul 25, The U.S.
government froze Japanese and Chinese assets.
1941 Jul 26, Benjamin Lee Whorf
(1897), American linguist, died. He had argued that different
languages condition or restrain the mind’s habits of thought.
1941 Jul 27, The German army
1941 Jul 27, Japanese forces
landed in Indo-China.
1941 Jul 28, Riccardo Muti,
conductor (Philadelphia Orch), was born in Napoli, Italy.
1941 Jul 28, A Japanese army
landed in Cochin, China (modern day Vietnam).
1941 Jul 29, David Warner,
actor (Star Trek VI, Time Bandits), was born in Manchester, NH.
1941 Jul 30, Paul Anka, singer
and song-writer, was born in Ottawa. He later composed the song "My
(G&M, 7/30/97, p.A24)
1941 Jul 31, The U.S. Army
established the Military Police Corps.
1941 Jul, Artist Marc Chagall
and his wife Bella Rosenfeld departed France for America. On the
same day that he left Vichy police deported some 1,200 other Jewish
refugees to forced labor in north Africa.
(Econ, 9/20/08, p.102)
1941 Jul, In northwestern
Lithuania some 9,000 Jews were killed by Lithuanian police.
(WSJ, 1/19/08, p.W8)
1941 Jul, The 16,000 sq. mile
area of the Ukraine named Transnistria was granted by Hitler to the
Romanian dictator Ion Antonescu for Romania’s participation in the
war against the soviet Union. Jews from Bessarabia, Bukovina and
Moldova were transferred here and many thousands were murdered from
1941-1944 by the Romanian Gendarmeric, the Einsatrzgruppe D,
Ukrainian police and Sonderkommando R.
(WSJ, 7/30/97, p.A15)
1941 Aug 1, The Grumman TBF
Avenger torpedo plane made its first flight.
1941 Aug 1, Luftwaffe bombed
the German 23rd division.
1941 Aug 2, The summary of an
FBI probe of GM senior executives with links to Adolph Hitler found
collusion Germany by James D. Mooney, president of GM Overseas
Corp., but no evidence of any disloyalty to America.
(SSFC, 1/7/07, p.E6)
1941 Aug 2, Buffy Sainte-Marie,
folksinger and songwriter, was born in Saskatchewan, Canada.
1941 Aug 2, German 11th Army
surrounded 20 Russian divisions at Uman.
1941 Aug 2, Jews were expelled
from Hungarian Ruthenia.
1941 Aug 3, Beverly Lee, singer
(Shirelles-Soldier Boy), was born in Passaic, NJ.
1941 Aug 3, Martha Stewart,
cookbook author, actress (Those Two), was born.
1941 Aug 5, The German army
completed taking 410,000 Russian prisoners in Uman and Smolensk
pockets in the Soviet Union.
1941 Aug 7, In Romania 551 Jews
were shot in the Kishinev ghetto.
1941 Aug 9, US President
Franklin Roosevelt and PM Winston Churchill met at Placentia Bay,
Newfoundland. Their meeting produced the August 14 Atlantic Charter,
an agreement between the two countries on war aims, even though the
US was still a neutral country.
1941 Aug 10, Great Britain and
the Soviet Union promised aid to Turkey if it was attacked by the
1941 Aug 11, Elizabeth
Holtzman, DA (D-Rep-NY, Watergate Committee), was born in Brooklyn.
1941 Aug 11, Soviet bombers
raided Berlin but caused little damage.
1941 Aug 12, Deborah Walley,
actress (Mothers-in-Law), was born in Bridgeport, Ct.
1941 Aug 12, Jennifer Warren,
actress (Slap Shot, Fatal Beauty, Mutant), was born in NYC.
1941 Aug 12, French Marshal
Henri Philippe Petain announced full French collaboration with Nazi
1941 Aug 13, A prototype of the
GEE or AMES Type 7000 British radio navigation system was lost on a
raid over Hanover, Germany. GEE was devised by Robert Dippy and
developed at the Telecommunications Research Establishment (TRE) at
Swanage. Dippy later went to the United States where he worked on
the development of the LORAN system. Loran, long-range navigation,
later fell out of favor with the development of satellite-based
1941 Aug 13, Red army evacuated
1941 Aug 14, The Atlantic
Charter was created in 1941. It was a joint declaration of peace
aims and a statement of principles by US Pres. Roosevelt and British
Prime Minister Churchill that renounced aggression.
(HFA, '96, p.36)(WUD, 1944, p.1683)(AP, 8/14/97)
1941 Aug 14, Josef Jakobs,
German spy, was executed in Tower of London.
1941 Aug 15, Lithuanian Jews in
Kaunas were herded into the Slobodka ghetto.
1941 Aug 18, The concentration
camp at Amersfoort, Netherlands, opened.
1941 Aug 19, The final German
assault on Tallinn began.
1941 Aug 20, Slobodan
Milosevic, premier of Serbia, was born.
1941 Aug 20, Police raided the
11th district of Paris and took over 4,000 Jewish males.
1941 Aug 20, Adolf Hitler
authorized the development of the V-2 missile.
1941 Aug 21-Sep 26, The Soviet
Union’s greatest defeat in WWII occurred during the encirclement of
the Ukrainian city of Kiev. The Germans took some 665,000 Soviet
1941 Aug 22, Nazi troops
1941 Aug 25, British and Soviet
forces entered Iran, opening up a route to supply the Soviet Union.
1941 Aug 25, German troops
conquered Novgorod, Leningrad.
1941 Aug 27, The Soviet armada
began to move out of Tallinn. By the next day 5 ships were sunk by
German bombers and Soviet ships began to encounter minefields set by
the Kriegsmarine and Finnish Navy. The Soviets succeeded in
evacuating 165 ships, 28,000 passengers and 66,000 tons of equipment
1941 Aug 27, The Shah of Iran
abdicated the throne to his son Reza Pahlavi. Britain forced Reza
Shah to abdicate and installed his son Mohammed.
1941 Aug 27, The Prime Minister
of Japan, Fumimaro Konoye, issued an invitation for a meeting with
1941 Aug 28, Paul Peter
Plishka, bass (Met Opera), was born in Old Forge, Penn.
1941 Aug 28, The German U-boat
U-570 was captured by the British and renamed Graph.
1941 Aug 29, Robin Leach,
host for Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, was born.
1941 Aug 29, Henri Louis
(40), French officer, resistance fighter, was executed.
1941 Aug 29, The German
Einsatzkommando in Russia killed 1,469 Jewish children.
1941 Aug 30, The World War II
siege of Leningrad began as Nazi forces took Mga.
1941 Aug 31, The radio program
"The Great Gildersleeve," a spin-off of Fibber McGee & Molly,
made its debut on NBC.
(AP, 8/31/97)(MC, 8/31/01)
1941 Aug 31, Alan Lomax,
musicologist for the US Library of Vongress, traveled to
Mississippi, introduced himself to McKinley Morganfield, aka Muddy
Waters, and began recording his Delta Blues songs.
(ON, 8/20/11, p.4)
1941 Aug 31, Marina Tsvetaeva
(b.1892), Russian poet and writer, died. She wrote six plays in
verse and narrative poems, including The Tsar Maiden (1920), and her
epic about the Civil War, The Swans' Encampment, which glorified
those who fought against the communists.
1941 Aug, The US placed an
embargo on oil shipments to Japan in response to Japan’s occupation
of French Indochina (later Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam).
(Econ, 12/6/14, p.24)
1941 Aug, In Germany public
protests curtailed the Nazi euthanasia program that had already
gassed some 70,000 mentally handicapped German adults and children.
(WSJ, 3/23/04, p.D8)
1941 Aug, 23 German U-boats
were sunk this month (80,000 ton).
1941 Sep 1, Jews living in
Germany were required to wear a yellow Star of David.
1941 Sep 3, Nazis made the 1st
use of Zyclon-B gas in Auschwitz on Russian prisoners of war.
1941 Sep 4, German submarine
U-652 fired at the U.S. destroyer Greer off Iceland, beginning an
undeclared shooting war.
1941 Sep 6, Jews over the age
of 6 in German-occupied areas were ordered to wear yellow Stars of
(AP, 9/6/97)(HN, 9/6/98)
1941 Sep 6, Emperor Hirohito of
Japan gave his sanction "with misgivings" to simultaneous efforts to
negotiate peace with the US and to prepare for an attack if the
(SFC, 10/3/00, p.A10)
1941 Sep 6, Jews of Vilna,
Poland (Lithuania), were confined to their ghetto.
1941 Sep 8, The 900-day Siege
of Leningrad by German forces began during World War II. The Siege
of Leningrad, 400 miles northwest of Moscow, took place with Germany
spread along a 2,000 mile front. It led to the death of at least one
million Russians from starvation and disease. Leningrad has since
been renamed to St. Petersburg. In 2011 Anna Reid authored
“Leningrad: The Epic Siege of World War II."
(WSJ, 2/21/96, p.A-15)(AP, 9/8/06)(Econ, 8/27/11,
1941 Sep 8, The entire Jewish
community of Meretsch, Lithuania was exterminated.
1941 Sep 9, Otis Redding, rock
bassist (Sitting on the Dock of the Bay), was born in Dawson, Ga.
1941 Sep 10, Stephen Jay Gould
(d.2002), biologist, paleontologist and writer, was born in NYC. His
books included “Time’s Cycle" and “The Panda’s Thumb."
(HN, 9/10/00)(SFC, 5/21/02, p.A6)
1941 Sep 11, FDR ordered any
Axis ship found in American waters be sunk on sight, in response to
submarine attacks on US vessels.
1941 Sep 11, Ground breaking
ceremonies were held for the Pentagon. The 38-acre Pentagon was
built in Arlington, Va., over the next 2 years. Construction was
ordered by Brig. Gen. Brehon B. Sommervell to consolidate the 17 War
Dept. buildings. It cost $83 million and was located on a plot known
as Arlington Farms, that was bordered by 5 roads. In 2006 James
Carroll authored “House of War: The Pentagon and the Disastrous Rise
of American Power."
(SFC, 9/12/01, p.A6)(Econ, 5/27/06, p.81)
1941 Sep 11, Charles A.
Lindbergh sparked charges of anti-Semitism with a speech in Des
Moines, Iowa, in which he blamed "the British, the Jewish and the
Roosevelt administration" for trying to draw the United States into
World War II. Lindbergh had joined the America First Committee which
opposed US entry into the war.
(SFEC, 11/15/98, Par p.29)(USAW, 5/19/02,
1941 Sep 12, The US ship Busko
captured the 1st German ship in WW II.
1941 Sep 13, David
Clayton-Thomas (singer: group: Blood Sweat and Tears: You Made Me So
Very Happy, Spinning Wheel), was born.
1941 Sep 15, Nazis killed 800
Jewish women at Shkudvil, Lithuania.
1941 Sep 19, "Mama" Cass
Elliot, singer for the Mamas & Papas, was born as Ellen Naomi
1941 Sep 19, German army
1941 Sep 19, Nazi's force all
German Jews from the age of 6 to wear Stars of David.
1941 Sep 19, 1st meeting of
partisans Tito and Draza Mihailovic in Yugoslavia.
1941 Sep 21, The US launched
its 1st Liberty-ship, "Patrick Henry."
1941 Sep 21, The German Army
cut off the Crimean Peninsula from the rest of the Soviet Union.
1941 Sep 23, Germans staged an
air raid on the Russian naval base at Kronstadt. The battleship
1941 Sep 24, There was a bomb
explosion in German headquarters in Hotel Continental in Kiev.
1941 Sep 26, Bechtel launched
its first ship from the Marin shipyard in California. A total of 18
Liberty ships were built by Bechtel. The engines were made at the
Joshua Hendy Iron Works in Sunnyvale and shipped in by rail.
(SFEC, 5/9/99, Z1 p.4)
1941 Sep 26, In Ukraine some
33,711 Jews of Kiev were killed over 3 days before Yom Kippur in the
ravine at Babi Yar by the Nazis. Over the next 2 years some 100-200
thousand more people, mostly Jews, were killed at the site.
(SFC, 10/29/96, p.A6)(SFC, 6/25/01, p.A8)(SFC,
6/26/01, p.A8)(AP, 11/16/07)
1941 Sep 28, Ted Williams ended
the baseball season with .406 batting avg.
1941 Sep 29, 30,000 Jews were
gunned down in Kiev when Henrich Himmler sent four strike squads to
exterminate Soviet Jewish civilians and other "undesirables."
1941 Sep 30, 3,721 Jews were
buried, some still alive, at Babi Yar ravine (near Kiev) Ukraine.
[See Sep 26,29]
1941 Sep 30, 53 U-boats sunk
1941 Sep, Jean "Max" Moulin was
smuggled to London to meet Charles de Gaulle, leader of the French
Resistance, and the other exiled French leaders. In January 1942 the
SOE parachuted him back into France, to set up an organized
1941 Oct 2, Gilbert Gable,
mayor of Port Orford, Ore., announced with some pals that they were
fed up of being neglected by legislators in Salem and Sacramento and
began promoting a 51st state named Jefferson with Yreka as the
(SSFC, 6/3/01, p.A26)(AH, 2/05, p.20)
1941 Oct 2, Operation Typhoon,
a German all-out drive against Moscow, began in earnest. In 2006
Rodric Braithwaite authored “Moscow 1941: A City and Its People at
10/2/97)(http://www.bartcop.com/arc4110.htm)(Econ, 9/23/06, p.95)
1941 Oct 2, 6 Paris synagogues
were bombed by Gestapo.
1941 Oct 3, The film "Maltese
Falcon," starring Humphrey Bogart as detective Sam Spade, opened. It
was directed by John Huston (34).
(HN, 10/3/00)(SFCM, 2/6/05, p.10)
1941 Oct 3, Adolf Hitler
declared in a speech in Berlin that Russia is "broken" and would
"never rise again."
1941 Oct 3, Nazi's blew up 6
synagogues in Paris.
1941 Oct 3, All elderly Jewish
men of Kerenchug Ukraine, were killed by SS.
1941 Oct 4, Jackie Collins,
actress, author, was born in London, England. Her books included
"The world Is Full of Married Men (1968), "Stud" (1969), "Bitch"
(1979) and "Deadly Embrace" (2002).
(MC, 10/4/01)(SSFC, 8/4/02, Par p.14)
1941 Oct 4, Anne Rice,
novelist, was born in New Orleans, La. Her books included "Interview
with a Vampire."
(HN, 10/4/00)(MC, 10/4/01)
1941 Oct 5, Former Supreme
Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis (b.1856), the first Jewish member of
the nation's highest court (1916-39), died in Washington at age 84.
In 2009 Melvin Urofsky authored “Louis D. Brandeis: A Life."
(AP, 10/5/99)(Econ, 9/26/09, p.97)
1941 Oct 6, German troops
renewed their offensive against Moscow.
1941 Oct 7-1941 Oct 8, There
was a massacre of over 3,700 Jews over a 2-day period near
Svencionys, Lithuania. Vincas Valkavickas, a prison guard during the
massacre, emigrated to the US in 1950 and was forced to leave in
1999 for concealing his wartime service.
1941 Oct 8, Jesse Jackson,
civil rights leader, was born in Greenville, SC.
(HN, 10/8/98)(MC, 10/8/01)
1941 Oct 8, Construction began
on the 430-acre Birkenau extermination camp, 1.5 miles away from
(MC, 10/8/01)(WSJ, 8/14/02, p.A8)
1941 Oct 8, The Germans arrived
in Mariupol, Ukraine, and immediately instituted anti-Jewish
(WSJ, 1/19/08, p.W8)
1941 Oct 9, President Franklin
D. Roosevelt requested congressional approval for arming U.S.
1941 Oct 10, German U-boat
torpedoes hit the US destroyer Kearney.
1941 Oct 10, Soviet troops
halted the German advance on Moscow.
1941 Oct 12, Russian government
moved from Moscow to Volga as Nazis closed in on Moscow.
1941 Oct 12, Thousands of Jews
were killed in Ivano Frankivsk, Ukraine, by men of the Security
Police (Sicherheitspolizei; SiPo), assisted by members of the German
Order Police (Ordnungspolizei) and the railroad police.
1941 Oct 13, Paul Simon,
songwriter, singer, musician, was born. He played guitar and
recorded with Garfunkel: Bridge Over Troubled Water, Mrs. Robinson,
Scarborough Fair, The Sounds of Silence; solo: Me and Julio,
Kodachrome, 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover, Rock and Roll Hall of
1941 Oct 13, Nazis killed
11,000 Jewish children and old people.
1941 Oct 14, The 1st mass
deportations took place at Kovno, Lodz, Minsk & Riga.
1941 Oct 15, The 1st mass
deportation of German Jews to Eastern Europe.
1941 Oct 15, The Japanese Tojo
regime was formed. [see Oct 17]
1941 Oct 15, Odessa, a Russian
port on the Black Sea which had been surrounded by German troops for
several weeks, was evacuated by Russian troops.
1941 Oct 16, Germany advanced
within 60 miles of Moscow.
1941 Oct 16, Antanas Gustaitis
(b.1898), Lithuanian aviation engineer, was shot to death in Moscow.
He had designed 9 ANBO airplanes.
1941 Oct 17, The U.S. destroyer
Kearney was damaged by a German U-boat torpedo off Iceland; 11
people were killed.
1941 Oct 17, Gen’l. Hideki Toho
(1885-1948) became Premier and Minister of War in Japan. When the
bellicose war minister and most powerful man in Japan, Army General
Hideki Tojo, became prime minister, there no longer was a chance of
avoiding war with Britain and the United States.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)(HN, 2/21/98)
1941 Oct 18, Spy Richard Sorge
was arrested in Tokyo.
1941 Oct 18, The Germans forces
in Mariupol, Ukraine, murdered some 9,000 local Jews.
(WSJ, 1/19/08, p.W8)
1941 Oct 20, Nazi occupiers
murdered 500 inhabitants of Kragujevac, Serbia.
1941 Oct 22, Charles Minot Dole
was informed by US Army Chief of Staff George C. Mitchell and Sec.
of War Henry Stimson that the 87th Mountain Infantry Division would
soon be constituted at Fort Lewis, Washington. Some 3,500 volunteers
from the National Ski Patrol were soon recruited for the division.
(ON, 4/2011, p.6)
1941 Oct 22, Guy Moquet (17)
was executed by a German firing squad, one of dozens of communists
condemned by an official in France's collaborationist Vichy regime
in reprisal for the murder of a German officer.
1941 Oct 22-23, Some 39,000
[20,000] Jews were killed by Romanian troops over 2 days in Odessa.
Many of them were burned to death in a public square or in
warehouses that were locked shut. Altogether some 90,000 Jews were
killed in Odessa.
(SFC, 6/15/98, p.A11)(WSJ, 3/23/04, p.D8)
1941 Oct 23, Walt Disney's
cartoon film, "Dumbo," was released.
1941 Oct 24, Adolph Hitler met
with Heinrich Himmler, head of the SS, and Reinhard Heydrich, the
man in charge of the forthcoming genocide program, and pronounced:
"It’s not a bad idea, by the way, that public rumor attributes to us
a plan to exterminate the Jews."
(WSJ, 4/12/00, p.A26)
1941 Oct 25, Anne Tyler,
novelist, was born. Her work included "The Accidental Tourist"
and "Ladder of Years."
1941 Oct 25, Germany attacked
1941 Oct 25, 16,000 Jews were
massacred in Odessa, Ukraine. [see Oct 22-23]
1941 Oct 26, US savings bonds
went on sale.
1941 Oct 27, In a broadcast to
the nation on Navy Day, President Franklin Roosevelt declared:
"America has been attacked, the shooting has started." He did not
ask for full-scale war yet, realizing that many Americans were not
yet ready for such a step.
1941 Oct 27, The Chicago Daily
Tribune dismissed the possibility of war with Japan, editorializing,
"She cannot attack us. That is a military impossibility. Even our
base at Hawaii is beyond the effective striking power of her fleet."
1941 Oct 27, Nazis directed the
evacuation of the gypsy ghetto in Belgrade.
1941 Oct 31, The Mt. Rushmore
sculpture was completed after 14 years of work. [see 1927]
(HFA, '96, p.40)(HN, 10/31/01)
1941 Oct 31, The US Navy
destroyer "Reuben James" was torpedoed by a German U-boat off
Iceland, killing 115, even though the United States had not yet
entered World War II.
1941 Oct 31, 13 U boats were
sunk this month (62,000 ton).
1941 Oct, The US Army
established the Umatilla Munitions Depot on 20,000 acres of desert
and sagebrush in Oregon just 6 weeks before the bombing of Pearl
1941 Oct, British, USSR and
other allied forces invaded Iran to break up the Iran-Nazi alliance.
Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, left the country
under disguise with the Italian delegation and relocated to Germany.
(SSFC, 1/8/06, p.D8)
1941 Oct, In Czechoslovakia PM
Alois Elias was sentenced to death for high treason and espionage.
He was executed on June 19, 1942.
1941 Oct, Josip Broz Tito,
Yugoslav communist leader, directed the organizing of Albanian
(www, Albania, 1998)
1941 Oct-1941 Nov, Nazi doctor
Aribert Heim, dubbed "Dr. Death," worked at the Mauthausen
concentration camp near Linz, Austria, as camp doctor. Heim fled
Germany in 1962.
1941 Nov 1, Japanese marine
staff officers Suzuki and Maejima arrived in Pearl Harbor.
1941 Nov 1, Chetniks attacked
Tito's partisans in Uzice, Yugoslavia.
1941 Nov 2, German troops
1941 Nov 3, Hirohito's accord
on Yamamoto's attack plan on Pearl Harbor failed.
1941 Nov 5, Japanese marine
staff officers Suzuki and Maejima left Pearl Harbor.
1941 Nov 6, USA lent Soviet
Union $1 million.
1941 Nov 6, Einsatz death
groups killed 15,000 Jews of Rovno, Ukraine.
1941 Nov 7,
British air attacks hit Berlin, Mannheim and Ruhrgebied.
1941 Nov 7, Russians paraded
across Red Square commemorating the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution and
afterward went directly to the front to defend Moscow from the
approaching Nazi forces.
1941 Nov 10, Freedom House was
founded by a group of prominent individuals, including Eleanor
Roosevelt and Wendell Willkie. It emerged from an amalgamation of
two groups that had been formed, with the quiet encouragement of
President Franklin D. Roosevelt, to encourage popular support for
American involvement in World War II at a time when isolationist
sentiments were running high in the United States.
1941 Nov 10, Churchill promised
to join the U.S. "within the hour" in the event of war with Japan.
1941 Nov 12, Madame Lillian
Evanti and Mary Cardwell Dawson established the National Negro Opera
1941 Nov 12, Germany's drive to
take Moscow halted.
1941 Nov 13, A German U-boat,
the U-81 torpedoed Great Britain's premier aircraft carrier, the HMS
Ark Royal. The ship sank the next day.
1941 Nov 15, Cow Palace opened
in Daly City, Ca. Construction labor was largely supplied by the
(GTP, 1973, p.113)(SFC, 2/28/08, p.A11)
1941 Nov 15, The German siege
of Sevastopol began.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)
1941 Nov 15, The German final
attack on Moscow began. They advanced to within 25 miles of the
center of Moscow.
1941 Nov 17, German Luftwaffe
general and World War I fighter-ace Ernst Udet committed suicide.
The Nazi government told the public that he died in a flying
1941 Nov 18, British troops
opened an attack on Tobruk, North Africa.
1941 Nov 18, Mussolini's forces
left Abyssinia (Ethiopia).
1941 Nov 19, The ship HMAS
Sydney was sunk off the west coast of Australia in a battle with the
German raider Kormoran, with the loss of all 645 on board. The
Kormoran also sank, but 318 of the German vessel's crew of 397 were
rescued. The 9,500 ton Kormoran had been disguised as a Dutch
merchant ship when it opened fire on the Sydney. The government
banned all media from reporting the news for 12 days as it scrambled
to explain what happened. In March, 2008, the wrecks of the Kormoran
and the Sydney were found. In 2009 a military inquiry said Navy
Capt. Joseph Burnett made "errors of judgment" in the tragedy.
(AFP, 8/10/07)(AP, 3/16/08)(Reuters, 4/8/08)(AP,
1941 Nov 20, Ambassadors Nomura
and Kurusu handed over Japan’s last diplomatic note.
1941 Nov 21, Juliet Mills,
actress (Nanny & the Professor, QB VII), was born in London
1941 Nov 22, Tom Conti, actor
(Reuben Reuben, American Dreamer), was born in Paisley, Scotland.
1941 Nov 22, British cruiser
Devonshire sank the German sub Atlantis.
1941 Nov 23, U.S. troops moved
into Dutch Guiana [Surinam] to guard the bauxite mines.
1941 Nov 23, German troops
conquered Klin, NW of Moscow.
1941 Nov 24, "Life
Certificates" were issued to some Jews of Vilna. The rest were
1941 Nov 24, Indian infantry
attacked German tanks at Sidi Omar.
1941 Nov 25, German Jews in
Netherlands were declared stateless.
1941 Nov 26, The US issued an
edict that "the government of Japan will withdraw all military,
naval, air and police forces from China and Indochina."
(SFC, 1/19/02, p.A19)
1941 Nov 26, Congress adopted a
joint resolution, permanently setting the date of Thanksgiving on
the fourth Thursday of November. President Franklin Roosevelt signed
a bill establishing the fourth Thursday in November as the national
(HN, 11/26/98)(HNPD, 11/26/98)
1941 Nov 26, The Japanese fleet
departed from the Kurile Islands en route for its attack on Pearl
1941 Nov 26, Free French
General Georges Catroux was placed in control of Syria and Lebanon.
Shortly after taking up this post, Catroux recognized the
independence of Syria and Lebanon in the name of the Free French
1941 Nov 27, Jefferson seceded
from Oregon and California. Jefferson was the winning name for a new
state made of California’s northern Siskiyou, Del Norte and Trinity
counties along with Oregon’s southern Curray County. California’s
Gov. Culbert L. Olson was soon informed that until roads were
repaired, Jefferson would be forced to rebel every Thursday. In 2008
calls for a Jefferson state gained steam and included an additional
5 counties in southern Oregon and 2 more in northern California.
(AH, 2/05, p.21)(SSFC, 10/5/08, p.A11)
1941 Nov 27, British 13th Army
corp. reached Tobruk, North Africa.
1941 Nov 27, USSR began a
counter offensive, causing Germans to retreat.
1941 Nov 28, Eddy Arnold and
Sally Katherine wed.
1941 Nov 28, The aircraft
carrier USS Enterprise departed Pearl Harbor to deliver F4F Wildcat
fighters to Wake Island. This mission saved the carrier from
destruction when the Japanese attacked.
1941 Nov 28, German troops
1941 Nov 29, The passenger ship
Lurline sent a radio signal of sighting Japanese war fleet steaming
east across the northern Pacific.
1941 Nov 29, In Riga, Latvia,
the Nazis separated the men over 16 from their families. That night
half the ghetto population were massacred.
(SFEC, 11/1/98, p.A15)
1941 Nov 30, 101 year old
Nyack-Tarrytown (NY) ferry makes it's last run.
1941 Nov 30, Japanese Emperor
Hirohito consulted with admirals Shimada and Nagano.
1941 Nov, The Albanian
Communist Party was founded; Enver Hoxha became the first secretary.
(www, Albania, 1998)
1941 Nov, The first British SAS
operation, planned to see troops parachute deep behind enemy lines
and destroy German and Italian aircraft at two airfields in Libya,
took place. Strong winds and driving rain caused chaotic conditions,
with several soldiers becoming injured as they attempted to
parachute and one plane shot down, killing 15 troops and the crew.
In 2011 a 600-page book, called "The SAS War Diary," detailed the
regiment's role in the invasions of Sicily and Italy and famed D-Day
landings in France.
1941 Nov, Some 4,000 who
remained in Gomel, Belarus, were shot by the Nazis. Most of the
40,000 who had lived there had managed to escape before the Nazis
1941 Nov, In Germany Amin
al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, met with Adolf Hitler and
reportedly urged Hitler to exterminate Jews.
(SFC, 10/22/15, p.A2)
1941 Nov, Nazis in the Ukraine
set up a concentration camp near the village of Gvozdavka-1, near
Odessa, and killed about 5,000 Jews. Their mass grave was found in
1941 Dec 1, The first Civil Air
Patrol in the U.S. was organized.
1941 Dec 1, British declared a
state of emergency in Malaya following reports of Japanese attacks.
1941 Dec 1, British cruiser
Devonshire sank the German sub Python.
1941 Dec 1, Japanese emperor
Hirohito signed a declaration of war. Japan’s Tojo rejected U.S.
proposals for a Pacific settlement as fantastic and unrealistic.
(HN, 12/1/98)(MC, 12/1/01)
1941 Dec 2, Naval Intelligence
ended the bugging of the Japanese consul.
1941 Dec 2, Yamamoto ordered
his fleet to Pearl Harbor.
1941 Dec 1-7, In Latvia during
the first week of the month some 20-30,000 Jews were taken by the
Nazis from the Riga ghetto to nearby Rumbuli forest, shot and buried
in mass graves.
(SFEC, 11/1/98, p.A14)
1941 Dec 4, The Chicago Tribune
and the Washington Herald published FDR's top secret plan to invade
Europe in 1943.
(SFC, 12/29/99, p.E1)
1941 Dec 4, In Yreka, Ca., the
new state of Jefferson elected John C. Childs (71) as its 1st
(AH, 2/05, p.22)
1941 Dec 4, Nazi ordinances
placed the Jews of Poland outside protection of courts.
1941 Dec 4, Operation Taifun
(Typhoon), which was launched by the German armies on October 2,
1941 as a prelude to taking Moscow, was halted because of freezing
temperatures and lack of serviceable aircraft. Temperatures near
Moscow fell to 40 degrees below zero the breech-blocks of German
rifles froze solid. The engines of their vehicles would not start.
The Soviets began a counter-attack with 17 armies and their T-34
tanks that included 25 Siberian divisions and the Nazis were forced
to retreat in panic.
(SFC,10/29/97, p.A23)(HN, 12/4/98)
1941 Dec 5, President Roosevelt
sent a message to Japanese Emperor Hirohito expressing hope that
gathering war clouds would be dispelled. Hirohito smiled
enigmatically, knowing that Japan would attack Pearl Harbor the next
1941 Dec 5, US aircraft carrier
Lexington and 5 heavy cruisers steamed out of Pearl Harbor.
1941 Dec 5, Sister Elizabeth
Kenny's new treatment for infantile paralysis, polio, was approved.
1941 Dec 5, Russian offensive
in Moscow drove out the Nazi army.
1941 Dec 6, John Nelson,
conductor (Les Troyens of Berlioz), was born in San Jose, Costa
1941 Dec 6, Richard Speck, mass
murderer (killed 8 student nurses in 1966), was born.
1941 Dec 6, President Franklin
D. Roosevelt issued a personal appeal to Emperor Hirohito to use his
influence to avoid war.
1941 Dec 6, NYC Council agreed
to build Idlewild (Kennedy) Airport in Queens.
1941 Dec 6, Dutch and British
pilots saw Japanese invasion fleet at Singapore.
1941 Dec 7, At 7:50 a.m. [7:55
a.m.] Japan launched an aerial attack on the U.S. naval base at
Pearl Harbor, the home base of the U.S. Pacific fleet, and forced US
entry into the war. They also attacked the Philippines, the Int’l.
Settlement at Shanghai, Thailand and Hong Kong. Relations between
Japan and the United States had been strained for a decade as both
nations sought to dominate the Pacific. Long aware that a Japanese
surprise attack on the naval base at Pearl Harbor could precede war,
U.S. authorities were still woefully unprepared when 363 Japanese
fighters, dive-bombers and torpedo planes sunk or damaged eight
battleships and three light cruisers, destroyed 188 planes and
killed 2,400 men in just over two hours. The Battleship Arizona lost
1,177 men. An estimated 900 were entombed in the sunken ship. The US
lost  19 ships, 140 aircraft and 2,300 [2,338] lives. In all
2,403 people were killed and 1,178 were wounded; 187 planes were
destroyed and 159 damaged. The Japanese lost 29 planes and 5 midget
submarines. The next day, President Franklin D. Roosevelt denounced
December 7, 1941, as a "date which will live in infamy" as he asked
Congress to declare war on Japan.
(SFC12/6/96, p.A5)(SFC,12/5/97, p.A29)(AP,
1941 Dec 7, At 2:20 p.m. the
"Final Memorandum" document was delivered to Sec. of State Cordell
Hull in Washington DC. In it Japan notified the US that it was
"impossible to reach an agreement through further negotiations."
(SFC, 12/9/99, p.C2)
1941 Dec 7, Evidence arose in
1999 that one of five Japanese mini submarines penetrated Pearl
Harbor and hit at least one ship with torpedoes. In 1999 Robert B.
Stinnett published "Day of Deceit: The Truth About FDR and Pearl
Harbor." Edward Latimer "Ned" Beach (1918-2002), former Navy captain
authored "Scapegoats! A Defense of Kimmel and Short at Pearl
(SFC, 12/7/99, p.A1)(WSJ, 12/7/99, p.A24)(SFC,
1941 Dec 7, Australian bombers
landed on Timor and Ambon.
1941 Dec 7, The 8 month German
siege of Tobruk, Libya, ended.
1941 Dec 7, The 1st Japanese
submarine was sunk by a US ship, the USS Ward.
1941 Dec 8, The United States
entered World War II as Congress declared war against Japan, a day
after the attack on Pearl Harbor.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)(SFEC, 12/15/96, p.T7)(AP,
1941 Dec 8, A US tanker was
shelled by a Japanese submarine off Cape Mendocino.
(Ind, 1/27/00, 5A)(Ind, 2/2/02, 5A)
1941 Dec 8, Japanese bombers
1941 Dec 8, Japan attacked the
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)(SFEC, 12/15/96, p.T7)(AP,
1941 Dec 8, Japanese troops
occupied Hong Kong.
(SFEC, 6/22/97, p.A14)
1941 Dec 8, Japanese General
Yamashita began his attack against the British army at Singapore.
General Tomoyuki Yamashita earned the name "Tiger of Malaya" for his
masterful capture of Singapore and the whole Malay Peninsula from
the British, who had a superior number of troops. Yamashita’s
forces landed on the northern Malay Peninsula and southern Thailand
on December 8, 1941, and moved rapidly southward toward Singapore,
which surrendered on February 15, 1942. The peninsula and Singapore
remained under Japanese control throughout the war. Later in the
war, while defending the Philippines from Gen. MacArthur‘s return,
Yamashita's troops wantonly slaughtered more than 100,000 Filipinos
in Manila. He was later tried and executed for war crimes.
(HN, 12/8/98)(HNQ, 4/5/00)
1941 Dec 8, The Nazi Chelmno
extermination camp opened in Poland.
(WUD, 1994 p.252)(MC, 12/8/01)
1941 Dec 8, Russians took
Krijukovo back from Germany.
1941 Dec 8-9, In Latvia a final
sweep of the Jewish ghetto in Riga resulted in over 800 bodies
burned and thrown into a mass grave at a cemetery next to the
ghetto. These events were later recalled in the book "Endless
Miracles," by survivor Jack Ratz, who was 14 at the time, but went
with the men on Nov 29.
(SFEC, 11/1/98, p.A15)
1941 Dec 9, Franklin D.
Roosevelt told Americans to plan for a long war.
1941 Dec 9, 1st US WW II
bombing mission in Far East took place over Luzon, Philippines.
1941 Dec 9, China declared war
on Japan, Germany and Italy.
1941 Dec 9, Hitler ordered US
1941 Dec 10, The US submarine
Sealion was sunk in an air attack at Manila Bay. 10 crewman were
captured by the Japanese and shipped to work in a Mitsubishi copper
mine in northern Japan.
(SSFC, 6/17/01, Par p.5)
1941 Dec 10, British battleship
Prince of Wales sank off Singapore.
1941 Dec 10, Japanese troops
invaded the Filipino island of Luzon and overran Guam.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)(HN, 12/10/98)(MC, 12/10/01)
1941 Dec 10, The siege of
Tobruk in North Africa, was raised.
1941 Dec 11, The US declared
war on Germany and Italy. Germany and Italy declared war on the
United States; the U.S. responded in kind.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)(TL, 1988, p.112)(AP,
1941 Dec 11, A Japanese
invasion fleet attacked Wake Island, which was defended by 439 US
marines, 75 sailors and 6 soldiers. The defenders sank 4 Japanese
ships, damaged 8 and destroyed a submarine.
(SFC, 12/12/01, p.A2)
1941 Dec 11, Guam was occupied
by Japanese troops.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)
1941 Dec 12, Buzz Wagner, the
first official American ace of World War II, took off on a lone
reconnaissance mission over Aparri, Philippines. Because of
devastating losses by the U.S. fighter force two days earlier,
orders had come down restricting confrontation with enemy fighters
if at all possible. His reconnaissance mission turned into a combat
mission when he descended from a patch of clouds and found himself
practically on top of two Japanese destroyers. Spotted and chased by
a pair of Japanese fighters, Wagner eluded the enemy and took out
five of 12 enemy planes. Four days later, Wagner and two associates
went into combat over Vigan and left behind 17 enemy planes
destroyed or burning, with an unknown number of Japanese dead lying
on the runway. The mission garnered the most devastating results of
the air war to date.
1941 Dec 12, German occupying
army searched house to house in Paris looking for Jews.
1941 Dec 13, U-81 torpedoed the
British aircraft carrier Ark Royal.
1941 Dec 14, US Treasury Sec.
Henry Morgenthau asked his assistant Harry Dexter White to prepare a
paper outlining the possibilities for coordinated monetary
arrangements between the US and its allies. White’s proposal said
the primary goal should be to stabilize the exchange rates of the
Allied countries to encourage the flow of capital. The later led to
the establishment of the gold standard at Bretton Woods, N.H., in
(WSJ, 10/15/98, p.A22)
1941 Dec 14, U.S. Marines made
a stand in battle for Wake Island.
1941 Dec 14, German Field
Marshal Wilhelm Keitel ordered the construction of defensive
positions along the European coastline.
1941 Dec 15-1941 Dec 23,
Catholic Sisters Jula Ivanisevic, Berchmana Leidenix, Krizina
Bojanc, Antonija Fabjan and Bernadeta Banja, who helped the poor
regardless of religion in the majority Serb village of Pale, Bosnia,
were killed in Gorazde and thrown into the River Drina. The sisters
were beatified in 2011.
1941 Dec 17, German troops led
by Rommel began to retreat in North Africa.
1941 Dec 18, The US Navy
purchased the dry dock and shipyard at Hunters Point, SF, from
Bethlehem Steel Co., eleven days after Japan’s attack on Pearl
(SFC, 6/9/15, p.A8)
1941 Dec 18, Defended by 610
fighting men, the American-held island of Guam fell to more than
5,000 Japanese invaders in a three-hour battle.
1941 Dec 18, German submarine
1941 Dec 18, Japanese troops
landed on Hong Kong. [see Dec 8,19]
1941 Dec 18 - 1941 Dec 24,
Japanese submarines attacked eight US merchant ships off the West
Coast sinking two and damaging two others. Seven of the attacks were
inside California coastal waters.
(Ind, 2/2/02, 5A)(SFC, 12/7/13, p.C4)
1941 Dec 19, US Attorney
General Francis Biddle issued Circular No. 3591 to all federal
prosecutors to drop references to peonage and label such files as
“Involuntary Servitude and Slavery." This was in response to Pres.
Roosevelt’s fear that mistreatment of blacks would be used in
propaganda by Japan and Germany.
(WSJ, 3/29/08, p.W8)
1941 Dec 19, US Office of
Censorship was created to control info about WW II.
1941 Dec 19, Hitler took
complete command of German Army.
1941 Dec 19, Japanese landed on
Hong Kong and clashed with British troops.
1941 Dec 20, The Flying Tigers,
American pilots in China, entered combat against the Japanese over
1941 Dec 20, Japanese troops
landed on Mindanao.
1941 Dec 22, The cartoon
character Archie Andrews, drawn by Montana and written by Vic Bloom,
first appeared in Pep Comics #22. In 2014 Archie Comics said the
Archie character will be heroically sacrifice himself in Life with
1941 Dec 22, British Prime
Minister Winston Churchill arrived in Washington for a wartime
conference with President Roosevelt.
1941 Dec 23, US Marines and
Navy defenders on Wake Island capitulated to a second Japanese
invasion. In 1995 Brig. Gen. John F. Kinney co-wrote “Wake Island
Pilot: A World War II Memoir."
(AP, 12/23/97)(HN, 12/23/00)(SFC, 7/11/06, p.B5)
1941 Dec 23, The Japanese
occupied Hong Kong.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)
1941 Dec 23, The 440-foot
tanker Montebello was sunk off the California coast near Cambria by
Japanese submarine I-21. The crew of 38 survived. In 1996 it was
found that the 4.1 million gallon cargo of crude oil appeared
(SFC, 11/30/96, p.A19)(SFC, 8/27/10, p.A12)
1941 Dec 24, The 1st ships of
Admiral Nagumo's (Pearl Harbor) fleet returned to Japan.
1941 Dec 25, The USS President
Coolidge, a luxury liner repurposed for medical transport, arrived
in San Francisco with 125 men wounded in the Dec 7 attack at Pearl
(SFC, 12/7/13, p.C4)
1941 Dec 25, Free French
occupied the French Islands of St. Pierre and Miquelon off the
1941 Dec 25, Japan announced
the surrender of the British-Canadian garrison at Hong Kong. Major
John Crawford (d.1997) and some 1,975 Canadian soldiers were
captured and incarcerated at the Sham Shui Po prison camp at Kowloon
for 44 months.
(G&M, 7/30/97, p.A24)(HN, 12/25/02)(AP,
1941 Dec 25, In northwestern
Lithuania some 400 young Jewish women were killed by Lithuanian
(WSJ, 1/19/08, p.W8)
1941 Dec 26, Winston Churchill
became the first British prime minister to address a joint meeting
of the U.S. Congress.
1941 Dec 26, General Douglas
MacArthur declared Manila an open city in the face of the onrushing
1941 Dec 27, Japanese bombers
attacked Manila, despite its claim as an open city.
1941 Dec 31, General MacArthur
reported that U.S. lines in Manila had been pushed back by the
1941 Dec, Wonder Woman, a comic
book character created by William Moulton Marston (1893-1947) made
her debut in All Star Comics #8.
1941 Dec, Cecil Green (d.2003
at 102), Eugene McDermott, J. Eric Jonsson and H. Bates Peacock
purchased Geophysical Service Inc. in Dallas, Texas. In 1951 the
name was changed to Texas Instruments.
(SFC, 4/17/03, p.A22)
1941 Dec, For a week in
December 1941, Japanese submarines prowled the U.S. Pacific
coastline, searching for merchant ships to sink.
1941 Dec, A US tanker was
shelled by a Japanese submarine off Cape Mendocino.
(Ind, 1/27/00, 5A)
1941 Dec, David Ben-Gurion
(1886-1973), Israeli leader, traveled to Washington to speak with
Pres. F.D. Roosevelt regarding a Jewish state. He waited for 10
weeks at the Ambassador Hotel but was refused a meeting.
(http://tinyurl.com/kkvdh)(Econ, 8/5/06, p.28)
1941 Dec, Claude Albert Buss
(d.1998 at 94) was the senior American political figure on Manila
when it was occupied by the Japanese. He surrendered Manila and was
taken to Tokyo where he spent 2 years in solitary confinement.
(SFC, 11/23/98, p.A21)
1941 Dec, In Romania
authorities ordered the dissolution of all Jewish organizations.
Chief Rabbi Alexander Safran (1910-2006) helped set up the Jewish
Council, an underground organization comprising all sectors of the
Jewish population. The council used its links with Romanian church
officials, the Vatican and the royal family in a bid to prevent the
mass deportation of Romania's Jews to the Nazi extermination camps.
1941 Dec-1942 Jan, A massacre
of Jews began when Romanian and Ukrainian troops nailed shut one of
the pigsties' doors and windows in Bogdanovka, then torched it,
burning all inside alive. The killing went on for three weeks in
late December 1941 and early January 1942. An estimated 48,000
people were killed.
1941 Mahmoud Darwish,
Palestinian poet, was born in a village that later became part of
Israel. His later work included the poem "State of Siege." In 2003
"Unfortunately It Was Paradise," a translation of his work into
English, was published
(SSFC, 11/3/02, p.D6)
1941 Rev. Jesse Jackson was
(SFC, 8/24/96, p.E3)
1941 Don Glen Viet, later known
as Captain Beefheart, was born. He was a friend of Frank Zappa and
became known for his blues singing and painting. In 2002 Mike Barnes
authored "Captain Beefheart: The Biography."
(SSFC, 3/17/02, p.M3)
1941 Georges Braque, master of
color, painted "Mandolin and Score."
(WSJ, 3/3/97, p.A16)
1941 Juan Miro created his
painting “Ciphers and Constellations in Love With a Woman."
(SSFC, 12/19/04, p.E1)
1941 Piet Mondrian moved to the
US and painted "New York City I" in rhythmic and cheerful color and
(WSJ, 6/6/95, p.A-14)
1941 Pablo Picasso painted
"Woman Seated in an Armchair," "Head of a Woman" and "Still Life
with Blood Sausage."
(SFEC, 9/20/98, DB p.39)(SFC, 10/10/98, p.E8)
1941 James Agee wrote "Let Us
Now Praise Famous Men," an account of poverty in Appalachia. 61
photographs by Walker Evans were included.
(WSJ, 7/27/99, p.A21)
1941 Vera Brittain authored
"England’s Hour," an account of life under the Blitzkrieg.
(WSJ, 1/21/02, p.A1)
1941 Claude Albert Buss,
scholar and diplomat, published "War and Diplomacy in East Asia."
(SFC, 11/23/98, p.A21)
1941 James M. Cain published
1941 Eugene O’Neill wrote his
one-act play "Hughie."
(WSJ, 8/28/96, p.A10)
1941 Noel Coward’s play "Blithe
Spirit" was recognized as elegant high comedy.
(TL, 1988, p.112)
1941 John L. Goldwater (d.1999
at 83) created the Archie comic book character. Betty, Veronica and
Jugghead were added later. The character was put on TV in the late
60s in "Archie: To Riverdale and Back." A TV movie based on Archie
was broadcast in 1990. Bob Montana (d.1975) created the Archie
character for Pep Comics.
(SFC, 3/1/99, p.A19)(SFC, 12/24/01, p.A18)
1941 Plastic Man debuted in US
comic books. After an accident at a chemical plant gives Eel O'Brian
the ability to stretch and alter his shape, he renounces his
criminal past and becomes the longest arm of the law. Green Arrow
also appeared in US comic books. The Emerald Archer learns his
skills while trapped on a desert island. He later escapes to become
a modern Robin Hood.
1941 Siegfried Giedion, a Swiss
art historian, published his influential book: "Space, Time and
(TL, 1988, p.112)
1941 In Northern California
William Randolph Hearst wrote his poem "The Song of the River" at
his Winton estate on the McCloud River in the foothills of Mount
(SFEC, 8/11/96, p.A19)
1941 James Hilton authored
“Random Harvest." It was turned into a 1942 film starring Ronald
Colman and Greer Garson and directed by Mervyn LeRoy.
1941 "Paddle-to-the-Sea" by
Holling Clancy Holling was published.
(SFEC, 2/27/00, BR p.12)
1941 Arthur Koestler
(1905-1983), Hungarian novelist and essayist, authored “Darkness at
Noon," a story of life in Stalin’s Russia.
(HN, 9/5/98)(SFEC, 1/2/00, BR p.5)(WSJ, 8/26/06,
1941 Gypsy Rose Lee, strip
tease queen, authored “The G-String Murders."
1941 Wassily Leontief
(1906-1999), Russian-born economist, published his book “The
Structure of American Economy." It included a large table showing
the flow of commodities and services among American households. In
1973 he won the Bank of Sweden Prize in Economic Sciences.
(Econ, 7/15/06, p.67)(http://tinyurl.com/qfkgw)
1941 Janet Lewis (1899-1998)
published "The Wife of Martin Guerre," a historical novel on about
16th century France. The story was turned into an opera in 1961 with
music by William Bergsma. In 1984 a French film version was released
"The Return of Martin Guere." An American version, "Somersby," was
made in 1993 set during the Civil War.
1941 Daphne du Maurier authored
the novel "Frenchman's Creek."
(SFEC, 2/20/00, p.T12)
1941 Frances Macgregor (d.2002
at 95), sociologist and photographer, published ""Twentieth Century
Indians." The collection of photos helped prompt Congress to devote
more money to Indian reservations.
(SFC, 2/8/02, p.A25)
1941 Robert McCloskey (d.2003),
author and illustrator, wrote "Make Way for Ducklings." It was set
in Boston and became a children's classic.
(WSJ, 7/2/03, p.D8)
1941 H.L. Mencken (1880-1956)
published the 2nd volume of his “Days" trilogy, “Newspaper Days."
The first volume was “Happy Days" and the 3rd was “Heathen Days."
(WSJ, 9/29/07, p.W8)
1941 Phyllis Moir wrote "I Was
Winston Churchill’s Private Secretary."
(SFEM, 12/15/96, p.16)
1941 Paul Nash completed his
masterpiece of war wreckage "Totes Meer" (Dead Sea).
(TL, 1988, p.112)
1941 Alberto Moravia in his
novel "The Fancy Dress Party" presented a satirical portrait of
(TL, 1988, p.112)
1941 Margret E. Rey (1906-1996)
and her husband Hans A. Rey (d.1977) published their first "Curious
George" book with Houghton Miflin. Six more came out over 25 years.
The Reys were German Jews and had escaped with the original
manuscript out of Germany in 1940. A film version was produced in
(SFC, 12/23/96, p.A16)(SSFC, 11/11/01, Par
p.25)(WSJ, 2/2/06, p.D8)
1941 Leo Rosten (1908-1997)
wrote Hollywood: "The Movie Colony, The Movie Makers." It was one of
the first sociological examinations of the film industry.
(SFC, 2/21/97, p.A25)
1941 Budd Schulberg authored
the novel “What Makes Sammy Run," a classic satire on a young man’s
climb in Hollywood.
(WSJ, 12/16/06, p.P10)
1941 Bertram Smythies (d.1999
at 86), British naturalist, published "The Birds of Burma." Most of
the original copies were lost but a 2nd edition in 1953 was
(SFC, 8/3/99, p.A20)
1941 George R. Stewart,
novelist, wrote "Storm." A fictional character in the book called a
hurricane "Maria." The idea of naming hurricanes with female names
was taken up by military meteorologists in WW II.
(SFEC, 2/15/98, Z1 p.8)
1941 George E. Taylor (d.2000
at 94), historian and political scientist, authored "America in the
(SFC, 4/21/00, p.D4)
1941 Eudora Welty sold a
collection of short stories to Doubleday. The book was titled "A
Curtain of Green." Welty had preferred "The Key and Other Stories"
as the title.
(SFEC, 12/6/98, BR p.12)
1941 British writer Rebecca
West, pen name for Cicely Isabel Fairfield (1892-1983), authored
“Black Lamb and Grey Falcon," on the history and culture of
1941 Ira Gershwin (d.1983),
Kurt Weill and Moss Hart (d1961) collaborated in the production of
"Lady in the Dark."
(SFC, 5/10/97, p.E4)
1941 "The Hut Sut Song,"
written by attorney Leo V. Killion, became a hit. It was a spoof on
Swedish folk songs and was used in the 1953 film "From Here to
(SFC, 10/31/00, p.A25)
1941 The 1942 film Casablanca
was set in 1941 in Morocco. In 1998 Richard E. Osborne published his
book "The Casablanca Companion: The Movie Classic and Its Place in
History," in which the events of the movie are tied to the actual
events of history.
(SFEC, 1/25/98, Par p.6)
1941 Wystan Hugh Auden
(d.1973), English born American poet, critic and playwright, wrote
the libretto for Benjamin Britten’s first music drama, "Paul
(WSJ, 4/23/98, p.A16)
1941 Alex Kramer (d.1998 at 94)
and his wife, Joan Whitney, wrote the song "High On a Windy Hill,"
which began a No. 1 hit for Jimmy Dorsey. The Canadian-born
songwriter wrote most of his 125 songs with his wife.
(SFC, 2/17/98, p.B8)
1941 Bluesman Muddy Waters
recorded "Plantation Recordings" (Columbia). His songs included
"Hoochie Coochie Man" and "I Got My Mojo Workin."
(NH, 9/96, p.62)(SFEC, 10/27/96, DB p.9)
1941 Jay McShann recorded
(SFC, 8/22/96, F4)
1941 Gene Kruppa, jazz drummer,
hired Anita O'Day (1919-2006) as his vocalist.
(WSJ, 7/28/99, p.A21)(SFC, 11/24/06, p.A1)
1941 Shostakovich, a local fire
warden, composed his Seventh Symphony, the "Leningrad," during the
German siege of his native city.
(SFC, 10/18/96, C9)(WSJ, 6/8/98, p.A21)
1941 Michael Tipett, English
composer, completed his oratorio "A Child of Our Time."
(TL, 1988, p.112)
1941 The US Air Force Band was
formed as part of the US Army Air Corp.
(SFC, 10/12/97, DB p.11)
1941 Roman Cycowski, former
singer in the popular European group, Comedian Harmonists, took up a
job as cantor of the Beth Israel Temple in SF and served for 25
(WSJ, 2/5/98, p.A20)
1941 In San Francisco a
building opened on western Taraval near Ocean Beach. It was
initially a bait shop that connected to a bar called the Oar House,
surrounded by empty streets and sand dunes. It later became known as
the Riptide neighborhood bar.
(SSFC, 12/7/08, p.A2)
1941 In San Francisco the
Lakeside Medical Center at 2501 Ocean Ave., designed in Art Moderne
style by Harold Stoner, was completed.
(SSFC, 4/25/10, p.C2)
1941 In San Francisco
construction began on the Union Square Garage, the 1st underground
parking facility and air-raid shelter.
(SSFC, 7/21/02, p.F2)
1941 Audley Cole became the
first black operator hired by San Francisco Muni. One of his
co-workers was beaten for trying to train him.
(SFC, 10/6/99, p.A4)
1941 San Francisco parks
employee Fred Levy took over a tiny lab at the former Ethan Allen
School at Seventh and Bryant streets and named it the San Francisco
Photography Center. In the 1950s it moved to Scott Street and Duboce
(SFC, 6/16/12, p.E1)
1941 In SF Sam Mooshei opened
the Persian Aub Zam Zam bar on Haight St.
(SSFC, 12/3/00, p.A24)
1941 In Nevada the El Rancho
Vegas opened with 63 rooms. It was the first major resort built on
the Las Vegas strip. It was destroyed by fire in 1960.
(SFEC, 5/10/98, DB p.64)
1941 The United Council of
Church Women, a major ecumenical group, was founded.
(SFC, 3/30/97, Z1. p.7)
1941 Charles A. Federer Jr.
(d.1999 ) founded Sky and Telescope Magazine for amateur
(SFC, 10/5/99, p.A26)
1941 Gerald Ford (1908-2006),
41st vice-president and 38th president of the United States,
graduated from Yale University law school.
(SFC, 12/27/06, p.A11)
1941 Henry Luce, the founder of
Time and Life, tagged this era "The American Century."
(SFEC, 6/13/99, p.D7)
1941 Diana Trilling (1905-1996)
began her ten year stint as literary editor of The Nation.
(SFC, 10/25/96, p.A24)
1941 Cheerios, the breakfast
cereal, began to be produced.
(SFC, 8/24/96, p.E3)
1941 The Berelson Co. under
William E. Berelson (d.1997 at 90) initiated the commercial freezing
of strawberries in Cal.
(SFC, 5/15/97, p.A26)
1941 Batting helmets were worn
for the first time in baseball.
(WSJ, 10/15/98, p.B8)
1941 Pres. Roosevelt issued a
top-secret order to equip a civilian schooner as a warship and send
it south of the Philippines where the Japanese fleet was believed to
be patrolling. The Japanese attacked Pearl harbor before the Lanikai
wooden schooner set sail.
(SFC, 11/3/00, p.D5)
1941 Pres. Franklin Roosevelt
invoked the Trading With the Enemy Act of 1917 to authorize the Fed
to restrict consumer installment loans in order to suppress
consumption and free resources for the war effort.
(Econ, 6/1/13, p.75)
1941 Pres. Franklin D.
Roosevelt appointed Rexford Guy Tugwell as governor of Puerto Rico.
Under his direction the island became an experiment in central
(Econ, 7/11/15, p.34)
1941 In the US rubber was
(TMC, 1994, p.1941)
1941 The Federal Communications
Commission adopted a US television standard of 525 lines per
(SFC, 12/29/99, p.E3)
1941 Voice of America (VOA) was
created shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor. In 2003 Alan L.
Heil, Jr. authored "Voice of America: A History."
(Econ, 7/26/03, p.78)
1941 The Iroquois, the Sioux
and the Ojibwe (Chippewa) tribes declared war on Germany. The
Iroquois Confederacy, having declared war on Germany in 1917, had
never made peace and so automatically became party to World War II.
1941 The US Army asked Prof.
Ancel Keys (1904-2004) of the Univ. of Minnesota to help develop an
army ration that soldiers could carry in combat. His package was
called the K ration.
(SFC, 11/24/04, p.B6)
1941 Carl Karcher (1917-2008),
an Ohio-born farm boy, bought a hot-dog stand in southern California
and soon expanded to 3 stands and then a drive-in barbecue joint
called Carl’s. In 1956 he opened his first two Carl’s Jr. fast-food
burger outlets, which were among the first to later offer salad bars
and grilled-chicken sandwiches. By 2008 there were 1,121 Carl’s Jr.
restaurants in the US and 3,036 franchised or company-operated
(WSJ, 1/19/08, p.A10)
1941 The US annual median
income was $1,070, or about $20 per day.
(SFEC, 9/28/97, Z1 p.2)
1941 Matt Cvetic (d.1962 at 53)
infiltrated the Communist party in Pittsburgh. The 1951 film "I Was
a Communist for the FBI" was based on his true story. In 2001 Daniel
J. Leab authored "I Was a Communist for the FBI."
(WSJ, 2/12/00, p.A25)
1941 US scientists began work
on the Manhattan Project to develop an atomic bomb.
(TL, 1988, p.112)
1941 Walter H. Zinn (d.2000 at
93), nuclear physicist, oversaw the construction of the world's
first nuclear reactor in Chicago. Zinn directed the Argonne center
to develop nuclear power for peaceful use from 1946-1956.
(SFC, 2/26/00, p.A19)
1941 The first urban freeway
was constructed in Michigan.
(WSJ, 5/8/97, p.A16)
1941 Barney Kilgore (32) was
named managing editor of the Wall Street Journal. He developed the
(WSJ, 5/2/07, p.C1)
1941 Henry Ford threatened to
close down in union disputes but finally signed a union contract
just months before Pearl Harbor.
(WSJ, 6/19/96, Adv. Supl)
1941 A strike at Disney led to
the departure of a group of animators who formed United Pictures of
(WSJ, 7/31/97, p.A1)
1941 Liebmann Brewery, maker of
Rheingold Beer, began promoting the beer with pictures of model Jinx
Falkenburg (d.2003 at 84), a Chilean-born actress and tennis player.
(SFC, 7/4/03, p.A25)(SFC, 8/29/03, p.A28)
1941 Tower Records was founded
in Sacramento, Ca., by Russ Solomon in his father’s Tower Cut-Rate
Drugs store. In 1987 the company went bankrupt and closed after 46
years of operation.
(SFC, 8/3/13, p.E1)
1941 Willy’s Motors began
delivery of a reconnaissance vehicle that came to be known as the
(F, 10/7/96, p.69)
1941 West Bend Aluminum Co. of
West Bend, Wisc., began producing its penguin aluminum ice bucket.
(SFC, 1/21/98, Z1 p.3)
1941 In Britain the first test
flight of Frank Whittle’s jet engine was made. Plans for the engine
were then secretly taken to the US where General electric worked on
an American version.
(TL, 1988, p.112)(SFC, 8/10/96, p.A20)
1941 Penicillin was discovered
by Dr. Alexander Fleming. [see 1928,1929]
(TMC, 1994, p.1941)
1941 Prof. William Reeves
(1916-2004) and William M. Hammon isolated the 2 viruses that caused
western equine and St. Louis encephalitis and proved that they were
carried by a mosquito named Culex tarsalis.
(SFC, 9/21/04, p.B7)
1941 George Beadle, geneticist,
and Edward Tatum, chemist, identified genetic mutations that
disabled specific steps in the synthesis of a complex molecule. They
thus showed that a gene was a thing on a chromosome that specified
(NH, 6/01, p.33)
1941 The Alaskan Kenai National
Moose Range was established over a site of 1.7 million acres.
(AAM, 3/96, p.84)
1941 Los Angeles began
diverting water from 4 of the 5 streams that feed Mono Lake.
(NH, 9/96, p.62)
1941 The Narragansett Bay Plum
Beach Lighthouse at North Kingston, R.I., closed. A restoration in
2003 removed 60 tons of pigeon guano.
(SFC, 12/2/03, p.A2)
1941 John Roebling sold his
1,050 acres of the Lake Wales Ridge in Florida to his friend Richard
Archibald for one dollar. In 1974 Archibald purchased 3,000 more
acres of the Ridge to add to his Archibald Biological Station. [see
(PacDisc, Spring ‘96, p.6)
1941 Henri Bergson (1859-1941),
French philosopher, died. He is said to have taught that man acts
first and thinks later as opposed to Descartes who said man thinks
before he acts.
(AHD, 1971, p.125)(WSJ, 11/21/95, p.A-12)
1941 Frederic J. Fisher
(1878-1941) died. He and his brother Charles T. Fisher (1880-1963)
established the Fisher Body Co. in 1908. They sold their operations
to GM in 1926.
(WSJ, 6/19/96, Adv. Supl)
1941 Howard Heinz (b.1877), son
of food founder Henry Heinz, died. He had taken over company
operations in 1919 following the death of his father.
1941 Jorge Amado (1912-2001),
Brazilian Communist novelist, was exiled to Argentina.
(SFC, 8/9/01, p.D2)
1941 The Brazilian government
founded the steelmaker CSN. It was privatized in the early 1990s.
(Econ, 11/14/09, SR p.10)
1941 The British seized Eritrea
from the Italians.
(WSJ, 5/26/00, p.A22)
1941 Britain created its
Special Air Service (SAS) to create havoc behind German lines.
(Econ, 10/22/05, p.60)
1941 Pelham Graham (PG)
Wodehouse (1881-1975), English-US writer, made 5 radio broadcasts
from Nazi Germany. This kept him out of England for the last 34
years of his life.
(Econ, 11/20/04, p.87)
1941 In Burma Aung San founded
the Burmese Army. He is considered the father of the nation.
(SFEC, 1/19/97, Par p.4)
1941 Eritrea was the focal
point of American participation in the early part of the war. The
first American military advisors and contract civilians arrived in
1941 The French colonialists
chose Norodom Sihanouk (19) from the ranks of royalty to serve as
king of Cambodia.
(WSJ, 5/15/03, p.A8)
1941 Physicist Neils Bohr met
with Werner Heisenberg in Copenhagen. In 2000 the meeting was
portrayed in a play by Michael Frayn: "Copenhagen.’
(WSJ, 4/12/00, p.A24)
1941 Germany invaded Yugoslavia
and Ante Pavelic led a pro-Nazi dictatorship that controlled
newly-independent Croatia. Alojzije Stepinac, archbishop of Zagreb,
initially embraced the Pavelic government.
(SFEC, 10/4/98, p.A22)
1941 The Germans seized Latvia
and many Latvians joined the Nazi ranks. The Latvian Legion was
formed under the German Waffen SS and its 2 divisions helped prolong
the war by defeating the Soviet Army in several battles. Viktors
Arajs headed the feared Kommando unit that was responsible for war
crimes against Jews.
(SFC, 4/798, p.A14)
1941 Hitler completed his
seizure of the Balkans and began his blitz of London and then sent
148 divisions against his former ally, Russia.
(TMC, 1994, p.1941)
1941 The amber room in St.
Petersburg was dismantled by German officers and shipped to
Konigsberg for safekeeping. The Allied bombing in 1945 was thought
to have destroyed the work.
(SFC, 3/22/97, p.A16)
1941 Japan invaded Indonesia
and ended the Dutch era of colonial power. East Timor, under
Portuguese for some 400 years, was also invaded.
(SFC, 10/12/96, p.A13)
1941 Japanese forces land in
Thailand. After negotiations Thailand allows Japanese to advance
towards British-controlled Malay Peninsula, Singapore and Burma.
1941 Japan’s Tokai Bank was
founded. In 2001 it joined with Sanwa Bank and Tokyo Trust Bank to
form UFJ Holdings. In 2005 it became part of the Mitsubishi UFJ
(WSJ, 9/23/08, p.C1)
1941 Melanija Vanaga
(1905-1997) was exiled to Siberia after being snatched from her home
in Latvia. Her story: “Suddenly, a Criminal: Sixteen Years in
Siberia" became available in English in 2015.
1941 In Lithuania arrests and
deportations totaled some 34,260 people.
(Dr, 7/96, V1#1, p.3)
1941 In Lithuania Alexandras
Lileikis (d.2000 at 93) was chief of the Saugumas secret police
force of Vilnius. He ordered the arrests of Jewish men, women, and
children, who were turned over to the occupying Germans and
subsequently executed. Lileikis was indicted in 1998, but maintained
his innocence until he died.
(SFC, 5/25/96, p.A2)(SFC, 9/29/00, p.D6)
1941 The German minority in
Lithuania was repatriated in accord with German and Russian
(DrEE, 9/28/96, p.3)
1941 At the Rainis Forest in
the Telsiai region 74 Lithuanians were killed by Soviet NKVD and KGB
(Voruta #27-28, 7/1996, p.2)
1941 In Lithuania German forces
slaughtered some 12,000 Jews in Stoklishki (Alytus).
(WSJ, 1/19/08, p.W8)
1941 In Mexico Rev. Marcial
Maciel founded the Legion of Christ, a conservative Roman Catholic
order to minister to the wealthy and multiply its beneficial impact
on society. In 1946 Pope Pius XII ordered Father Maciel to recruit
Latin American leaders. In 1997 8 men went public with allegations
of sexual abuse by Father Maciel dating to the 1940s and 1950s.
(WSJ, 1/21/06, p.A13)
1941 In Mexico Fidel Velasquez
Sanchez (1900-1997) was first elected head of the Confederation of
(SFEC, 6/22/97, p.D8)
1941 Peru and Ecuador went to
war over a border conflict.
(WSJ, 1/20/98, p.A1)
1941 At Auschwitz 152 Polish
Catholics were killed by the Nazis.
(SFC, 5/29/99, p.A14)
1941 Polish Franciscan friar
Maximilian Kolbe was sent to Auschwitz after Nazi officials
discovered he had been hiding Jews. He was canonized by Polish-born
Pope John Paul II in 1982. He was hailed as a martyr for
volunteering to die in the place of another man.
1941 Nazi documents from this
year showed that the Einsatzgruppe, a Nazi-run Serbian police unit,
executed 11,164 people, mostly Serbian Jewish men, suspected
communists and Gypsies [see 1942]. The unit was allegedly run by
Peter Egner, who emigrated to the US in 1960, and received
citizenship in 1966. In 2009 Serbian authorities sought his
extradition. In 2010 Serbia issued an international warrant for the
arrest of Egner (88), who has denied the accusations.
(AP, 4/14/09)(AP, 4/2/10)(AP, 11/26/10)
1941 According to later day
Holocaust researchers a force in Ukraine under the command of Roman
Shukhevych took part in pogroms in which 4,000 Jews were killed. In
2007 Shukhevych was posthumously named a Hero of Ukraine.
1941 Ukraine nationalist leader
Stepan Bandera (1912-1959) fell out with the Nazis, after the
Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists declared Ukraine's
independence, and he was sent to a concentration camp. He won back
Germany's support in 1944 and was released. His group was involved
in the ethnic cleansing that killed tens of thousands of Poles
across the Austro-Hungarian Empire between 1942 and 1944.
1941 In Venezuela Romulo
Betancourt founded Accion Democratica, a centrist political party.
1941 The Viet Minh, a
nationalist movement led by Communists, was founded in Vietnam. Pham
Van Dong was a founding member.
(SFC, 5/3/00, p.A24)
1941-1942 The Baroness Hilla Rebay, onetime
mistress of Solomon Guggenheim and the first director of his museum,
painted her "Animato," what may well be the first abstract image of
a female orgasm.
(WSJ, 2/14/96, p.A-12)
1941-1942 Taylor’s "Practical Encyclopedia of
Gardening" was published.
(WSJ, 8/5/97, p.A16)
1941-1942 Varian Fry (d.1967) helped some 2,000
refugees escape from Nazi-occupied France.
(SFC, 3/9/98, p.C2)
1941-1942 The Asiatic fleet composed of US,
Australian, Dutch and British allies struggled to slow down the
Japanese advance while outnumbered 10:1. In the 1st three months the
Americans lost 22 ships, 1,826 men, and 519 men taken prisoner.
(SFC, 8/23/97, p.A4)
1941-1942 About 80,000 Czech Jews were rounded up
and sent to Terezin, a holding camp, prior to being sent to
Auschwitz. The survival rate was 10%.
(SFC, 2/4/97, p.A2)
1941-1942 In Greece an estimated 300,000 people
died from a winter famine.
1941-1942 Nearly 80,000 Jews, or 90% of Latvia's
prewar Jewish population, were killed during this period.
1941-1942 In Lithuania at the beginning of the war
there were about 60,000 Jews in Vilnius. A year later, only 18,000
remained. In 1998 Schoschana Rabinovici published her non-fiction
account: "Thanks To My Mother" a description of the murder of Polish
Jews in Vilnius through the eyes of a child.
(SFEC, 4/26/98, BR p.8)
1941-1942 The German siege of Sevastopol lasted
from Nov 15 to Jul 2.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)
1941-1942 Some 97% of the Gottscheers were moved
north within Slovenia from the area of Kocevje to Rann (later
Brezice). Their peak population numbered some 25,000. They were
driven out of their new homes by Yugoslav partisans after which they
wound up in Austria and then dispersed around the world.
(SFC, 6/16/99, p.A12)
1941-1943 In the US the government classified some
600,000 residents of Italian descent as enemy aliens. In Pittsburg,
California, some 2,000 of 7,000 residents were forced to move.
(SFEC, 12/26/99, p.C13)
1941-1943 The three Jewish Bielski brothers,
escaped Nazi-occupied Poland and established a refuge in the forests
of Belarus. By the end of WWII they succeeded in saving some 1,200
men, women and children. In 2003 Peter Duffy authored "The Bielski
Brothers: The True Story of Three Men Who Defied the Nazis, Saved
1,200 Jews and Built a Village in the Forest." Their story was
depicted in the 2009 film “Defiance," directed by Edward Zwick.
(SSFC, 7/13/03, p.M4)(WSJ, 1/2/08, p.W1)
1941-1944 Germany occupied the Crimean peninsula.
(SFC, 1/4/99, p.A8)
1941-1944 Necdet Kent (d.2002), Turkish diplomat,
was posted to Marseilles, France, and gave Turkish citizenship to
dozens of Turkish Jews living in France who did not have proper
identity papers to save them from deportation to the Nazi gas
1941-1944 In Latvia Herbert Cukurs (b.1900) served
as a deputy to the leader of the Arajs Commando, an auxiliary police
unit formed after German forces captured Latvia. The unit played a
central role in the near annihilation of Latvia's Jewish community.
After the war Cukurs fled to South America where Mossad agents
assassinated him in Uruguay in 1965.
1941-1944 About 250,000 Latvians fought alongside
either the Germans or the Soviets during this period. Some 150,000
Latvians died in the fighting.
1941-1944 Alexandras Lileikis was chief of the
Saugumas secret police force of Vilnius, Lithuania. He ordered the
arrests of Jewish men, women, and children, who were turned over to
the occupying Germans and subsequently executed.
(SFC, 5/25/96, p.A2)
1941-1944 The Lithuanian Security Police, also
referred to as Saugumas, was a Lithuanian Nazi
collaborationist police force that operated during this period. It
had a staff of approximately 400 people, 250 of them in Kaunas
and around another 130 in Vilnius. Kazys Gimžauskas, a deputy in the
Vilnius branch under Aleksandras Lileikis, returned to Lithuania
after US authorities began to investigate him in 1996. Gimzauskas
was convicted in 2001 of participation in genocide.
4/4/10, Par. p.5)
1941-1944 Some 40,000 Jews are believed to have
been slaughtered in Vilnius, Lithuania. An estimated 60,000 Jews
lived there when the Nazis moved in and fewer than 5,000 remained
when the Soviets recaptured the country. The Nazis killed some
240,000 Jews in Lithuania.
(SFC, 5/25/96, p.A2)(SFEC, 11/24/96, p.A15)
1941-1944 Jonas Stelmokas served as a unit
commander in 2 voluntary Nazi-sponsored detachments that helped the
Nazis kill thousands of Jews and partisans. In 1997 he was to be
deported from Lansdowne, Pa., in the US after he was accused of
being a former member of the Lithuanian police force that helped
Nazis kill Jews. In 1998 Stelmokas (82) was ordered to be deported
(SFEC,11/10/97, p.A4)(SFC, 4/24/98, p.A3)
1941-1944 The Siege of Leningrad, 400 miles
northwest of Moscow, took place and led to the death of at least one
million Russians from starvation and disease. Leningrad has since
been renamed to St. Petersburg. It broke in Jan, 1944.
(WSJ, 2/21/96, p.A-15)
1941-1945 The 1985 book "Eagle Against the Sun" by
Ronald H. Spector is one of the best single volume histories of WW
(WSJ, 5/24/01, p.A20)
1941-1945 In 2006 Evan Thomas authored “Sea of
Thunder: Four Commanders and the Last Great Naval Campaign
1941-1945," a study of the Pacific Campaign of World War II.
(WSJ, 12/16/06, p.P11)
1941-1945 American industry delivered more than
276,000 military aircraft. That was not only for US Army, Navy
and Marine Corps, but also for allies as diverse as Britain ,
Australia , China and Russia.
1941-1945 During WW II some 368 underwater mines
were placed to guard the entrance to the SF Golden Gate.
(G, Winter, p.2)
1941-1945 Ralph K. Davies spent the war years as
petroleum administrator for Interior Secretary Harold Ickes.
(SFC, 6/23/98, p.A11)
1941-1945 Industrialist Henry J. Kaiser, who
helped build the Hoover and Grand Coulee dams, established bay area
ship yards that were able to launch a "Liberty Ship" every 24 hours.
He expanded a health plan begun on his earlier dam projects that
grew to become Kaiser Permanente, the world’s largest health
maintenance organization. The Kaiser Richmond yard built 747 ships.
(SFEC, 3/1/98, p.W31)(SFEC, 5/9/99, Z1 p.4)
1941-1945 Croatia was occupied by Nazi forces and
with its Moslem allies some 700,000 Serbs and 75,000 Jews and
Gypsies were killed. [This was a letter with reference to the
Encyclopedia Britannica as source material] The Independent State of
Croatia was set up after the German and Italian invasions and run by
the fascist Ustashe regime as a puppet state. The central Ustashe
aim was to cleanse Croatia of "foreign" elements and to turn Croatia
into a "100% Roman Catholic state." Jasenovac is the site of the
largest Ustashe death camp, and some estimates claim as many as
several hundred thousand dead. Ante Pavelic was the leader of the
(WSJ, 10/11/95, p. A-1)(WSJ, 4/3/96, p.A-22)(WSJ,
1941-1945 The Herzegovina region of Bosnia became
a stronghold of the Croatian Ustashe movement allied to the Nazis.
Local clergy was seen condoning and supporting Ustashe mass slayings
of ethnic Serbs.
(SFC, 4/15/97, p.A10)
1941-1945 Some 148,000 Bessarabian Jews were
killed in Rybnitsa and other ghettos and concentration camps on the
East bank of the Dniester during the Nazi occupation.
(WSJ, 1/2/02, p.A18)
1941-1945 In Theresienstadt, Czechoslovakia, the
German SS ran Jewish ghetto as a holding station for Jews on their
way to death camps.
1941-1945 Gen’l. Hideki Toho served as Premier and
Minister of War in Japan.
(WUD, 1944, p.1683)
1941-1945 Some 1600-2000 German soldiers were
killed in Montenegro in clashes with Yugoslav communist partisans
1941-1953 Joseph Stalin (1879-1953), (Josif
Vissarionovitch Dzhugashvili), Communist party leader. He was Sec.
of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1922-1953, and
Premier from 1941-1953.
(AHD, 1971, p.1255)(AHD, p.1255)
1941-1945 In 2005 Catherine Merridale authored
“Ivan’s War: The Red Army 1941-1945.
(Econ, 10/22/05, p.86)
1941-1945 Sweden maintained neutrality during the
war but allowed German troops to cross its territory to invade the
Soviet Union. It also allowed 250,000 German troops to use the
railroad system to travel between occupied Norway and Germany. The
Swedish navy provided escort service for German military supply
ships and Swedish industry helped make up for German losses in the
ball-bearing industry due to Allied bombing raids.
(SFEC, 6/21/98, p.A13)
1941-1971 Jean Lipman (d.1998 at 88) edited Art in
America. She grew the magazine up from a scholarly journal into an
influential art publication.
(SFC, 6/26/98, p.D4)
1941-1983 Wagon Wheel dinner sets were
manufactured of cream-colored clay from Ada, Okla. After 1956 they
were made of red clay from Sapulpa, Okla.
(SFC, 7/29/98, Z1 p.23)