1775– U.S. forces under Gen. Richard Montgomery captured Montreal. This was a two-pronged attack on Canada, with the goal of capturing Quebec entrusted to Benedict Arnold, who was leading a force through a hurricane ravaged Maine wilderness.
1776 – Captain John Paul Jones in Alfred with brig Providence captures British transport Mellish, carrying winter uniforms later used by Washington’s troops.
1789 – George Washington, inaugurated as the first president of the United States in April, returns to Washington at the end of his first presidential tour. For four weeks, Washington traveled by stagecoach through New England, visiting all the northern states that had ratified the U.S. Constitution. Washington, the great Revolutionary War hero and first leader of the new republic, was greeted by enthusiastic crowds wherever he went. Major William Jackson, who was Washington’s aide-de-camp during the Revolutionary War, accompanied the president, along with a private secretary and nine servants, including several slaves. The group traveled as far north as Kittering, Maine, which was still a part of Massachusetts at the time. Two years later, President Washington embarked on his first presidential visit to the southern states, making a 1,887-mile round-trip journey from his estate at Mount Vernon, Virginia.
1806– Pike’s Peak was discovered, but not climbed, by Lieutenant Zebulon Montgomery Pike during an expedition to locate the source of the Mississippi. Explorations by Lt. Zebulon Pike and Kit Carson mapped out much of the state.
1809– John A.B. Dahlgren, US Union Lt Adm and inventor (Civil war Dahlgren cannon), was born. He was born in Philadelphia, PA, and when he turned 16 he joined the U.S. Navy as a midshipman. After many years at sea he was assigned to the navy’s ordnance bureau at Washington, D.C. in 1847. When the Civil War broke out in 1861, he became the head of the Washington Navy Yard after Captain Franklin Buchanan resigned that post to enlist in the Confederate cause. In 1862 Dahlgren was promoted to captain and named head of the navy’s Ordnance Bureau. In July of 1863 Dahlgren was promoted to rear admiral and assigned command of the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron. Dahlgren weapons are usually divided into three groups – bronze boat howitzers and rifles, iron smoothbores, and iron rifles. The designer, John A.B. Dahlgren of the U.S. Navy, developed the weapons primarily for use on small boats that patrolled the waterways. The necessity for these weapons was demonstrated by the Navy’s experience during the Mexican War when small launches and other craft were assigned to patrol close to river and creek banks. Dahlgren was a Lieutenant when he was assigned to the ordnance department at the Washington Navy Yard. The first weapon systems were adopted by the Navy in 1850. These bronze 12- and 24-pounder pieces were specially designed for use on the small launches, but were also included on most naval vessels during the Civil War. His iron smoothbores were adopted in 1850 (9-inch gun) and 1851 (11-inch gun). Although these guns were designed for use against wooden ships, the iron-clad Monitor class ships carried two of these in their turrets. These weapons were later replaced by the 15-inch Dahlgrens in 1862. By the end of the Civil War, John Dahlgren, now a rear admiral, was responsible for the development and design of 12-pounder boat howitzers in several weight classifications (small, medium, and light), 20- and 24-pounder howitzers (some, including the 12-pounders, were rifled); 30-, 32-, 50-, 80-, and 150-pounder rifles; and 8-, 9-, 10-, 11-, 13-, 15-, and 20-inch rifles.
1814– Joseph Hooker (d.1879), Major General (Union volunteers), was born. One of the most immodest and immoral of the high Union commanders, “Fighting Joe” Hooker frequently felt slighted by his superiors and requested to be relieved of duty. The Massachusetts native and West Pointer (1837) had been posted to the artillery but was serving as a staff officer when he won three brevets in Mexico. Unfortunately for his later career he testified against Winfield Scott before a court of inquiry on the Mexican War. After a two-year leave he resigned on February 21, 1853, to settle in California where he was in the farming and land businesses. At the outset of the Civil War he became a colonel of the state militia but soon offered his services to Washington where his anti-Scott testimony came back to haunt him. As a civilian he witnessed the disaster at lst Bull Run and wrote to Lincoln complaining of the mismanagement and advancing his own claim to a commission. Accepted, his assignments included: brigadier general, USV (August 3, 1861, to rank from May 17); commanding brigade, Division of the Potomac (August – October 3, 1861); commanding division, Army of the Potomac (October 3, 1861 -March 13, 1862); commanding 2nd Division, 3rd Corps, Army of the Potomac (March 13 – September 5, 1862); major general, USV (May 5, 1862); commanding 3rd Corps, Army of Virginia (September 6-12, 1862); commanding lst Corps, Army of the Potomac (September 12-17, 1862); brigadier general, USA (September 20, 1862); commanding 5th Corps, Army of the Potomac (November 10-16, 1862); commanding Center Grand Division, Army of the Potomac (November 16, 1862-January 26, 1863); commanding Department and Army of the Potomac (January 26 – June 28, 1863); commanding llth and 12th Corps, Army of the Cumberland (September 25 – April 14, 1863); commanding 20th Corps, Army of the Cumberland (April 14 – July 28, 1864); and commanding Northern Department (October 1, 1864 – June 27, 1865). After leading a brigade and then a division around Washington he went with McClellan’s army to the Peninsula, earning a reputation for looking after his men during the siege operations at Yorktown. His other reputation as a heavy user of alcohol was not so enviable. He was particularly distinguished at Williamsburg and although he felt slighted by his commander’s report he was named a major general of volunteers from the date of the action. Further fighting for Hooker came at Seven Pines and throughout the Seven Days. Following its close he scored a minor success in the retaking of Malvern Hill from the Confederates. Transferred to Pope with his division, he took part in the defeat at 2nd Bull Run. Given command of a corps for the Maryland Campaign, he fought at South Mountain and was wounded in the foot early in the morning fighting at Antietam. Three days later he was named a regular army brigadier general. Returning to duty, he briefly commanded the 5th Corps before being given charge of the Center Grand Division when Burnside reorganized his army into these two-corps formations. After the defeat at Fredericksburg and the disastrous Mud March, Burnside was relieved. In a letter to the Army of the Potomac’s new commander, Hooker, Lincoln praised the general’s fighting abilities but strongly questioned Hooker’s previous criticism of commanders and feared that this might come back to haunt the new chief. Lincoln was also critical of the general’s loose talk on the need for a military dictatorship to win the war. Once in charge, Hooker’s headquarters were roundly criticized by many as a combination of bar and brothel. When he launched his campaign against Lee, Hooker swore off liquor. This may have hurt more than it helped. After a brilliantly executed maneuver around Lee’s flank and the crossing of two rivers, Hooker lost his nerve and withdrew his forces back into the Wilderness to await reinforcements from John Sedgewick’s command coming from Fredericksburg. Here he felt convinced that Lee was in retreat but was surprised by Jackson’s flank attack, which routed Oliver 0. Howard’s 11th Corps. To make matters worse Hooker was dazed by the effects of a shell striking a pillar on the porch of his headquarters. He lost control of the army and ordered a withdrawal. Kept in command, he led the army northward in the early part of the Gettysburg Campaign until he resigned on June 28, 1863, over control of the garrison at Harpers Ferry. On January 28, 1864, he received the Thanks of Congress for the beginnings of the campaign. With the Union defeat at Chickamauga, he was given charge of the Armv of the Potomac’s 1lth and 12th Corps and sent to the relief of the Army of the Cumberland at Chattanooga. In the battles around that place in November 1863 he did well in keeping open the supply lines and in the taking of Lookout Mountain. However, in Grant’s report his actions were overshadowed by the less distinguished role of Sherman. The next spring the two corps were merged into the new 20th Corps with Hooker at their head. He fought through the Atlanta Campaign but when McPherson was killed before the city and Howard received command of the Army of the Tennessee, he asked to be relieved. This was granted and he finished the war in the quiet sector of Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois. Brevetted major general in the regular army for Chattanooga, he was mustered out of the volunteers on September 1, 1866, and two years later was retired with the increased rank of major general. Always popular with his men, he lacked the confidence of his subordinate officers and was quarrelsome with his superiors. His nickname, which he never liked, resulted from the deletion of a dash in a journalistic dispatch that was discussing the Peninsula Campaign and “Fighting” was thereafter linked to his name. Popular legend has it that his name was permanently attached to prostitutes from his Civil War actions in rounding them up in one area of Washington. He died in Garden City, New York, on October 31, 1879, and is buried in Cincinnati.
1835– Texans officially proclaimed Independence from Mexico, and called itself the Lone Star Republic, after its flag, until its admission to the Union in 1845. In 2001 Randy Roberts and James S. Olson authored “A Line in the Sand,” a narrative of the Texas drive for independence.
1851 – The Denny Party lands at Alki Point, before moving to the other side of Elliott Bay to what would become Seattle.
1860– South Carolina’s legislature called a special convention to discuss secession from the Union.
1861 – President Lincoln pays a late night visit to General George McClellan, who Lincoln had recently named general in chief of the Union army. The general retired to his chambers before speaking with the president. This was the most famous example of McClellan’s cavalier disregard for the president’s authority. Lincoln had tapped McClellan to head the Army of the Potomac-the main Union army in the East-in July 1861 after the disastrous Union defeat at the First Battle of Bull Run. McClellan immediately began to build an effective army, and he was elevated to general in chief after Winfield Scott resigned on October 31. McClellan drew praise for his military initiatives but quickly developed a reputation for his arrogance and contempt toward the political leaders in Washington. After being named to the top post, McClellan began openly to cavort with Democratic leaders in Congress and show his disregard for the Republican administration. To his wife, he wrote that Lincoln was “nothing more than a well-meaning baboon,” and Secretary of State William Seward was an “incompetent little puppy.” Lincoln made frequent evening visits to McClellan’s house to discuss strategy. On November 13, Lincoln, Seward, and Presidential Secretary John Hay stopped by to see the general. McClellan was out, so the trio waited patiently for his return. After an hour, McClellan came in and was told by a porter that the guests were waiting. McClellan headed for his room without a word, and only after Lincoln waited another half-hour was the group informed of McClellan’s retirement to bed. Hay felt that the president should have been greatly offended, but Lincoln casually replied that it was “better at this time not to be making points of etiquette and personal dignity.” Lincoln made no more visits to the general’s home.
1878– New Mexico Governor Lew Wallace offered amnesty to many participants of the Lincoln County War, but not to gunfighter Billy the Kid.
1893– Queen Lili’uokalani met with Albert Willis, the new US Minister to Hawaii, and refused pardon for the Provisional Government.
1941 – The United States Congress amends the Neutrality Act of 1935 to allow American merchant ships access to war zones, thereby putting U.S. vessels in the line of fire. In anticipation of another European war, and in pursuit of an isolationist foreign policy, Congress passed the Neutrality Act in August 1935, forbidding the sale of munitions by U.S. firms to any and all belligerents in any future war. This was a not-so-subtle signal to all governments and private industries, domestic and foreign, that the United States would play no part in foreign wars. Less than two years later, a second Neutrality Act was passed, forbidding the export of arms to either side in the Spanish Civil War. The original 1935 act was made even more restrictive in May 1937, forbidding not only arms and loans to warring nations, but giving the president of the United States the authority to forbid Americans from traveling on ships of any warring nation, to forbid any U.S. ship from carrying U.S. goods, even nonmilitary, to a belligerent, and to demand that a belligerent nation pay for U.S. nonmilitary goods before shipment–a “cash and carry” plan. But such notions of strict neutrality changed quickly once World War II began. The first amendment to the act came as early as September 1939; President Roosevelt, never happy with the extreme nature of the act, fought with Congress to revise it, allowing for the sale of munitions to those nations under siege by Nazi Germany. After heated debate in a special session, Congress finally passed legislation permitting such sales. Addressing the prospect of direct U.S. intervention in the war, President Roosevelt proclaimed, also in September 1939, that U.S. territorial waters were a neutral zone, and any hostile power that used those waters for the prosecution of the war would be considered “unfriendly” and “offensive.” Finally, when the U.S. destroyer Reuben James was sunk by a German sub in October 1941, the Neutrality Act was destined for the dustbin of history. By November, not only would merchant ships be allowed to arm themselves for self-defense, but they would also be allowed to enter European territorial waters. America would no longer stand aloof from the hostilities.
1942– Lt. Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower flew to Algeria to conclude an agreement with French Admiral Jean Darlan. It recognizes Admiral Darlan as the head of French civil government in North Africa. General Giraud is placed in command of the French armed forces. The Admiral was assassinated soon after.
1942 – Off the coast of Guadalcanal, a Japanese convoy of 11 transports carrying 11,000 men and equipment escorted by Admiral Tanaka’s “Tokyo Express” approaches the island. Admiral Abe command two battleships, two cruisers and 14 destroyers to give cover and to bombard Henderson Field airstrip to prevent American attacks. To the north, two further Japanese carriers are within striking range. American Admiral Callaghan, commanding a force of five cruisers and eight destroyers plots an interception course. In the early morning hours, Admiral Callaghan’s force comes upon the Japanese force led by Admiral Abe. In an action lasting about half an hour, two Japanese cruisers are sunk and almost all other vessels suffer damage. The Americans lose two cruisers and four destroyers. The Japanese transport convoy turns back. Later in the day, the battleship Hiei, already badly damaged, is torpedoed by American aircraft and scuttled. After the battle, criticism concerning the effective use of the American radar is leveled. Problems are blamed on mismatched equipment and poor communication between the ships.
1942 – Loss of USS Juneau (CL-52) during Battle of Guadalcanal results in loss of Five Sullivan Brothers. In the aftermath of Juneau’s loss, the Navy notified Mr. and Mrs. Thomas F. Sullivan of Waterloo, Iowa, that all five of their sons were missing in action. Two of the brothers had served previous four-year enlistments in the Navy and so, when all five brothers enlisted together on 3 January 1942, the Navy was the obvious choice. They had also insisted on serving together on the same ship. Although the accepted Navy policy was to separate family members, the brothers had persisted and their request was approved. It was later learned, through survivors’ accounts, that four of the brothers died in the initial explosion. The fifth, George Thomas, despite being wounded the night before, made it onto a raft where he survived for five days before succumbing either to wounds and exhaustion or a shark attack. The brothers received the Purple Heart Medal posthumously and were entitled to the American Defense Service Medal, Fleet Clasp; Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with four engagement stars and the World War II Victory Medal. They had also earned the Good Conduct Medal. They were survived by their parents, Mr. Thomas F. Sullivan and Mrs. Alleta Sullivan, a sister, Genevieve Sullivan, and by Albert Leo Sullivan’s wife, Katherine Mary Sullivan. Their son, James Thomas, was twenty-two months old at the time of his father’s death. The service record transcripts for the five Sullivan brothers, as written on 16 January 1943 by the Bureau of Naval Personnel follow: Albert Leo Sullivan, Francis Henry Sullivan, George Thomas Sullivan, Joseph Eugene Sullivan, Madison Abel Sullivan.
1943 – Fifth Fleet carriers begin long range night bombing attacks on Japanese positions in Gilberts and Marshalls in preparation for landings. American B-17 Flying Fortresses bomb Tarawa atoll in preparation for the coming landings.
1943 – On Bougainville, the third wave of the US landing force comes ashore. This includes the rest of the US 37th Infantry Division and the 21st Marine Division. Task Force 39 (Admiral Merrill) provides cover. The cruiser Denver is hit by a torpedo during the landing operation. Some fighting takes place on the Numa-Numa trail.
1943 – American General Clark, commanding US 5th Army, indicates to British General Alexander, Commander in Chief of Allied forces in Italy, that he believes attacks by his army should be halted for the present.
1944 – The Coast Guard-manned frigate USS Rockford, in concert with the Navy minesweeper USS Ardent, attacked and sank the Japanese Navy submarine I-12 mid-way between Hawaii and California. There were no survivors. In sinking I-12, Ardent and Rockford unwittingly avenged the atrocity I-12 had perpetrated on 30 October 1944 when, after sinking the Liberty Ship John A. Johnson, the submarine had rammed and sunk the lifeboats and rafts and then machine-gunned the 70 survivors.
1944 – Elements of US 3rd Army have crossed the Moselle River north of Thionville and constructed a bridge at Cattenom. South of Metz, other elements from US 12th Corps are attacking toward Morhange and Falquemont. To the south, German forces withdraw from St. Die under pressure from forces of the US 7th Army. Churchill visits French troops in the Vosges.
1944 – German U-978 sinks 3 Liberty ships in the English Channel.
1944 – Aircraft from US Task Force 38 (McCain) attack shipping and land targets on Luzon. American planes claim a Japanese cruiser and 4 destroyers sunk.
1950 – Operations Plan 116-50, which outlined the procedures for an emergency evacuation of U.N. forces from the Korean peninsula, was issued.
1955 – FBI agents search the home of John Graham, a chief suspect in the United Airlines plane explosion that killed all 44 people on board on November 1. The jet, which exploded shortly after departing from Denver, contained a hole near the cargo hold and traces of dynamite residue, suggesting that a bomb was responsible for the crash. Within a week, FBI agents began delving into the background of everyone connected to the flight. One of the passengers onboard the flight, Daisie King, was a wealthy woman traveling to visit her daughter. Although the suitcase that she had checked-in had been obliterated by the explosion, her carry-on bag contained a newspaper clipping about her son, John Graham, who had been involved in forgery and theft. When FBI agents questioned Graham on November 10, he told the detectives that his mother had packed shotgun ammunition in her suitcase. Graham’s wife provided more intriguing information: just before Graham took his mother to the airport, he had placed a gift-wrapped package in her luggage, explaining that the present was a jewelry tool kit. Graham denied any knowledge of this gift but the FBI obtained a search warrant to investigate further. A search of the Graham home turned up the ammunition that Mrs. King had allegedly packed, a small roll of copper wire, and a life insurance policy for Mrs. King, naming Graham as the designated beneficiary. Graham’s wife later revealed that he had ordered her to claim that she had been mistaken about the gift package. Faced with mounting evidence against him, Graham suddenly confessed to planting a bomb in his mother’s suitcase. He told the agents that he had taken a job in an electronics store to learn how to construct the bomb, which consisted of 25 sticks of dynamite, a battery, and a timer. At his televised trial, Graham retracted his confession but was found guilty. He was executed in the gas chamber in January 1957. Graham was a criminal and not a terrorist, but his actions exposed vulnerabilities and trail blazed tactics and methods that would be used by future terrorists.
1957 – First firing of Regulus II bombardment missile.
1967 – President Lyndon Johnson is briefed on the situation in Vietnam by Gen. William Westmoreland, Ambassador Ellsworth Bunker, and Robert W. Komer, the head of the Civil Operations and Revolutionary Development Support program. They painted an optimistic picture that led Johnson to state on television on November 17 that, while much remained to be done, “We are inflicting greater losses than we’re taking…We are making progress.” Such pronouncements haunted President Johnson and his advisers only two months later, when the communists launched a massive offensive during the Tet New Year holiday in January 1968.
1971– The U.S. space probe Mariner 9 went into orbit around Mars. NASA’s Mariner 9 circled Mars and revealed dried beds of rivers that flowed billions of years ago.
1982– Near the end of a weeklong national salute to Americans who served in the Vietnam War, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial is dedicated in Washington after a march to its site by thousands of veterans of the conflict. The long-awaited memorial was a simple V-shaped black-granite wall inscribed with the names of the 57,939 Americans who died in the conflict, arranged in order of death, not rank, as was common in other memorials. The designer of the memorial was Maya Lin, a Yale University architecture student who entered a nationwide competition to create a design for the monument. Lin, born in Ohio in 1959, was the daughter of Chinese immigrants. Many veterans’ groups were opposed to Lin’s winning design, which lacked a standard memorial’s heroic statues and stirring words. However, a remarkable shift in public opinion occurred in the months after the memorial’s dedication. Veterans and families of the dead walked the black reflective wall, seeking the names of their loved ones killed in the conflict. Once the name was located, visitors often made an etching or left a private offering, from notes and flowers to dog tags and cans of beer. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial soon became one of the most visited memorials in the nation’s capital. A Smithsonian Institution director called it “a community of feelings, almost a sacred precinct,” and a veteran declared that “it’s the parade we never got.” “The Wall” drew together both those who fought and those who marched against the war and served to promote national healing a decade after the divisive conflict’s end.
1986– US president Reagan confessed to weapon sales to Iran.
1990– Secretary of State James A. Baker III told reporters in Hamilton, Bermuda, the Persian Gulf crisis threatened world recession and the loss of American jobs. Members of Congress demanded a larger role in US Gulf policy following President Bush’s decision to send more US troops to the region.
1990 – President George H. W. Bush extends the initial mobilization of all Reserve Component units called in support of Operation Desert Shield from 90-days to 180-days (soon to be increased to 360-days) as the mission changes from defending Saudi Arabia from Iraqi invasion to compelling the Iraqi Army to withdraw from Kuwait. Along with this announcement came his decision to send an additional 200,000 troops (all branches) to the Southwest Asia theater.
As the American build up of forces in Saudi Arabia changed from defensive to offensive, among the Air Force units deployed were two Air Guard fighter units, both flying F-16 ‘Flying Falcon’ fighters. These were South Carolina’s 169th Tactical Fighter Group and New York’s 174th Tactical Fighter Wing. This images shows one of the F-16’s for the 169th preparing for take off. Note the white “fox head” insignia behind the cockpit. The unit’s nickname is the “Swamp Foxes” after Revolutionary War militia guerilla leader Francis Marion, known as the ‘Swamp Fox.’
1993 – GIs kill a Somali armed with a grenade launcher near the Embassy Compound.
1995– A car bomb killed 7 people, including five Americans, and injured about 60 at a military training facility in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
1996– Sgt. Loren B. Taylor, a drill sergeant who’d had sex with three women recruits at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., was given five months in prison and a bad-conduct discharge in the first sentencing of the burgeoning Army sex scandal.
1997– Iraq expelled 6 Americans on a UN weapons inspection team. The United Nations decided to withdraw all weapons inspectors from Iraq after Saddam Hussein ordered Americans on the U.N. team out.
1999– The Navy recovered the cockpit voice recorder from EgyptAir Flight 990, which crashed into the Atlantic Ocean October 31st with the loss of all 217 people aboard.
2000– The vote count in Florida was set to conclude though absentee ballots remained. Lawyers for George W. Bush failed to win a court order barring manual recounts of ballots in Florida. Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris announced she would end the recounting at 5 p.m. the next day – prompting an immediate appeal by lawyers for Al Gore.
2000– Two US F-16 military jets collided over waters off of northern Japan. One pilot was rescued and the other was missing.
2001– Pres. Bush issued an order to try int’l. terrorists by a special military tribunal.
2001– President Bush and Russian President Vladimir Putin met at the White House, where they pledged to slash Cold War-era nuclear arsenals by two-thirds but remained at odds over American plans to develop a missile defense shield.
2001– Kabul falls. The night of November 12, Taliban forces fled from the city of Kabul, leaving under cover of darkness. By the time Northern Alliance forces arrived the next afternoon only bomb craters, burned foliage, and the burnt out shells of Taliban gun emplacements and positions were there to greet them. A group of about twenty hardline Arab fighters hiding in the city’s park were the only remaining defenders. This Taliban group was killed in a brief 15-minute gun battle, being heavily outnumbered and having had little more than some shrub to shield them. After these forces were neutralized Kabul was in the hands of the US/NATO forces and the Northern Alliance. The fall of Kabul marked the beginning of a collapse of Taliban positions across the map. Within 24 hours, all of the Afghan provinces from the Iranian border, and the city of Herat, to northeastern Afghanistan, and the city of Jalalabad. Taliban holdouts in the north, comprised of mainly Pakistani volunteers, fell back to the northern city of Kunduz to make a stand.
2001– Eight foreign aid workers, two Americans, two Australians and four Germans, held captive in Afghanistan for three months were freed from a prison by anti-Taliban fighters.
2001– An anthrax tainted letter was received by a pediatrician in Santiago. It was postmarked from Switzerland and marked for return to Florida. It was actually mailed from NY through a NY-based subsidiary of the Swiss Post office. The letter was later believed to have been contaminated in a lab.
2001– Spanish police arrested 11 people with suspected links to Osama bin Laden.
2001 – Al-Qaeda and Taliban forces, possibly including bin Laden, were concentrating in Tora Bora, 50 kilometers (31 mi) southwest of Jalalabad. Nearly 2,000 al-Qaeda and Taliban fighters fortified themselves in positions within bunkers and caves.
2001 – In the first such act since World War II, US President George W. Bush signs an executive order allowing military tribunals against foreigners suspected of connections to terrorist acts or planned acts on the United States.
2002– Irv Rubin (57), Jewish Defense League leader, died nine days after what federal authorities said was a suicide attempt in jail.
2002– Iraq accepted a tough new U.N. resolution that will return U.N. weapons inspectors to the country after nearly four years.
2002– Philippine Muslim gunmen linked to the al Qaeda network have demanded a ransom of 16 million pesos ($300,000) for their seven Indonesian and Filipino hostages kidnapped in June and August.
2003– Pres. Bush said the US wants Iraqis to take more responsibility for governing their troubled country and said coalition forces are determined to prevail over terrorists.
2009 – NASA claims to have discovered water after the LCROSS satellite crashes near the South Pole of the Moon.
2013 – One World Trade Center becomes the tallest building in the United States.
Congressional Medal of Honor Citations for Actions Taken This Day
*CALLAGHAN, DANIEL JUDSON
Rank and organization: Rear Admiral, U.S. Navy. Born: 26 July 1892, San Francisco, Calif. Appointed from: California. Entered service at: Oakland, Calif. Other Navy award: Distinguished Service Medal. Citation: For extraordinary heroism and conspicuous intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty during action against enemy Japanese forces off Savo Island on the night of 12-13 November 1942. Although out-balanced in strength and numbers by a desperate and determined enemy, Rear Adm. Callaghan, with ingenious tactical skill and superb coordination of the units under his command, led his forces into battle against tremendous odds, thereby contributing decisively to the rout of a powerful invasion fleet, and to the consequent frustration of a formidable Japanese offensive. While faithfully directing close-range operations in the face of furious bombardment by superior enemy fire power, he was killed on the bridge of his flagship. His courageous initiative, inspiring leadership, and judicious foresight in a crisis of grave responsibility were in keeping with the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life in the defense of his country.
*KEPPLER, REINHARDT JOHN
Rank and organization: Boatswain’s Mate First Class, U.S. Navy. Born: 22 January 1918, Ralston, Wash. Accredited to: Washington. Other Navy award: Navy Cross. Citation: For extraordinary heroism and distinguished courage above and beyond the call of duty while serving aboard the U.S.S. San Francisco during action against enemy Japanese forces in the Solomon Islands, 1213 November 1942. When a hostile torpedo plane, during a daylight air raid, crashed on the after machine-gun platform, Keppler promptly assisted in removal of the dead and, by his capable supervision of the wounded, undoubtedly helped save the lives of several shipmates who otherwise might have perished. That night, when the ship’s hangar was set afire during the great battle off Savo Island, he bravely led a hose into the starboard side of the stricken area and there, without assistance and despite frequent hits from terrific enemy bombardment, eventually brought the fire under control. Later, although mortally wounded, he labored valiantly in the midst of bursting shells, persistently directing fire-fighting operations and administering to wounded personnel until he finally collapsed from loss of blood. His great personal valor, maintained with utter disregard of personal safety, was in keeping with the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.
Rank and organization: Commander, U.S. Navy, U.S.S. San Francisco. Place and date: Battle off Savo Island, 1213 November 1942. Entered service at: Colorado. Born: 12 August 1911, Washington, D.C. Other Navy award: Silver Star. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and exceptionally distinguished service above and beyond the call of duty as communication officer of the U.S.S. San Francisco in combat with enemy Japanese forces in the battle off Savo Island, 1213 November 1942. In the midst of a violent night engagement, the fire of a determined and desperate enemy seriously wounded Lt. Comdr. McCandless and rendered him unconscious, killed or wounded the admiral in command, his staff, the captain of the ship, the navigator, and all other personnel on the navigating and signal bridges. Faced with the lack of superior command upon his recovery, and displaying superb initiative, he promptly assumed command of the ship and ordered her course and gunfire against an overwhelmingly powerful force. With his superiors in other vessels unaware of the loss of their admiral, and challenged by his great responsibility, Lt. Comdr. McCandless boldly continued to engage the enemy and to lead our column of following vessels to a great victory. Largely through his brilliant seamanship and great courage, the San Francisco was brought back to port, saved to fight again in the service of her country.
SCHONLAND, HERBERT EMERY
Rank and organization: Commander, U.S. Navy, U.S.S. San Francisco Place and date: Savo Island, 12-13 November 1943. Entered service at. Maine. Born: 7 September 1900, Portland, Maine. Citation: For extreme heroism and courage above and beyond the call of duty as damage control officer of the U.S.S. San Francisco in action against greatly superior enemy forces in the battle off Savo Island, 12-13 November 1942. In the same violent night engagement in which all of his superior officers were killed or wounded, Lt. Comdr. Schonland was fighting valiantly to free the San Francisco of large quantities of water flooding the second deck compartments through numerous shell holes caused by enemy fire. Upon being informed that he was commanding officer, he ascertained that the conning of the ship was being efficiently handled, then directed the officer who had taken over that task to continue while he himself resumed the vitally important work of maintaining the stability of the ship. In water waist deep, he carried on his efforts in darkness illuminated only by hand lanterns until water in flooded compartments had been drained or pumped off and watertight integrity had again been restored to the San Francisco. His great personal valor and gallant devotion to duty at great peril to his own life were instrumental in bringing his ship back to port under her own power, saved to fight again in the service of her country.
Rank and organization: Rear Admiral, U.S. Navy. Born: 10 August 1889, Indianapolis, Ind. Appointed from: Indiana. Citation: For extraordinary heroism and conspicuous intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty during action against enemy Japanese forces off Savo Island on the night of 11-12 October and again on the night of 12-13 November 1942. In the earlier action, intercepting a Japanese Task Force intent upon storming our island positions and landing reinforcements at Guadalcanal, Rear Adm. Scott, with courageous skill and superb coordination of the units under his command, destroyed 8 hostile vessels and put the others to flight. Again challenged, a month later, by the return of a stubborn and persistent foe, he led his force into a desperate battle against tremendous odds, directing close-range operations against the invading enemy until he himself was killed in the furious bombardment by their superior firepower. On each of these occasions his dauntless initiative, inspiring leadership and judicious foresight in a crisis of grave responsibility contributed decisively to the rout of a powerful invasion fleet and to the consequent frustration of a formidable Japanese offensive. He gallantly gave his life in the service of his country.
SPURRIER, JUNIOR J.
Rank and organization: Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company G, 134th Infantry, 35th Infantry Division. Place and dare: Achain, France, 13 November 1944. Entered service at: Riggs, Ky. Birth: Russell County, Ky. G.O. No.: 18, 15 March 1945. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty in action against the enemy at Achain, France, on 13 November 1944. At 2 p.m., Company G attacked the village of Achain from the east. S/Sgt. Spurrier armed with a BAR passed around the village and advanced alone. Attacking from the west, he immediately killed 3 Germans. From this time until dark, S/Sgt. Spurrier, using at different times his BAR and Ml rifle, American and German rocket launchers, a German automatic pistol, and handgrenades, continued his solitary attack against the enemy regardless of all types of small-arms and automatic-weapons fire. As a result of his heroic actions he killed an officer and 24 enlisted men and captured 2 officers and 2 enlisted men. His valor has shed fresh honor on the U.S. Armed Forces.
*GRANT, JOSEPH XAVIER
Rank and organization: Captain (then 1st Lt.), U.S. Army, Company A, 1st Battalion, 14th Infantry, 25th Infantry Division. Place and date: Republic of Vietnam, 13 November 1966. Entered service at: Boston, Mass. Born: 28 March 1940, Cambridge, Mass. G.O. No.: 4, 29 January 1968. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Company A was participating in a search and destroy operation when the leading platoon made contact with the enemy and a fierce fire-fight ensued. Capt. Grant was ordered to disengage the 2 remaining platoons and to maneuver them to envelop and destroy the enemy. After beginning their movement, the platoons encountered intense enemy automatic weapons and mortar fire from the front and flank. Capt. Grant was ordered to deploy the platoons in a defensive position. As this action was underway, the enemy attacked, using “human wave” assaults, in an attempt to literally overwhelm Capt. Grant’s force. In a magnificent display of courage and leadership, Capt. Grant moved under intense fire along the hastily formed defensive line repositioning soldiers to fill gaps created by the mounting casualties and inspiring and directing the efforts of his men to successfully repel the determined enemy onslaught. Seeing a platoon leader wounded, Capt. Grant hastened to his aid, in the face of the mass of fire of the entire enemy force, and moved him to a more secure position. During this action, Capt. Grant was wounded in the shoulder. Refusing medical treatment, he returned to the forward part of the perimeter, where he continued to lead and to inspire his men by his own indomitable example. While attempting to evacuate a wounded soldier, he was pinned down by fire from an enemy machine gun. With a supply of hand grenades, he crawled forward under a withering hail of fire and knocked out the machine gun, killing the crew, after which he moved the wounded man to safety. Learning that several other wounded men were pinned down by enemy fire forward of his position, Capt. Grant disregarded his painful wound and led 5 men across the fire-swept open ground to effect a rescue. Following return of the wounded men to the perimeter, a concentration of mortar fire landed in their midst and Capt. Grant was killed instantly. His heroic actions saved the lives of a number of his comrades and enabled the task force to repulse the vicious assaults and defeat the enemy. Capt. Grant’s actions reflect great credit upon himself and were in keeping with the finest traditions of the U.S. Army.
Rank and organization: Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army, 74th Infantry Detachment (Long Range Patrol), 173d Airborne Brigade. Place and date: Binh Dinh Province, Republic of Vietnam, 13 November 1968. Entered service at: Minneapolis, Minn. Born: 21 September 1939, Budapest, Hungary. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. S/Sgt. Rabel distinguished himself while serving as leader of Team Delta, 74th Infantry Detachment. At 1000 hours on this date, Team Delta was in a defensive perimeter conducting reconnaissance of enemy trail networks when a member of the team detected enemy movement to the front. As S/Sgt. Rabel and a comrade prepared to clear the area, he heard an incoming grenade as it landed in the midst of the team’s perimeter. With complete disregard for his life, S/Sgt. Rabel threw himself on the grenade and, covering it with his body, received the complete impact of the immediate explosion. Through his indomitable courage, complete disregard for his safety and profound concern for his fellow soldiers, S/Sgt. Rabel averted the loss of life and injury to the other members of Team Delta. By his gallantry at the cost of his life in the highest traditions of the military service, S/Sgt. Rabel has reflected great credit upon himself, his unit, and the U.S. Army