Jan 2, us secretary of State John Hay announced the Open Door Policy to prompt trade with China. This policy rejected efforts to carve up China or restrict its




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1918       


Jan 7, The Germans moved 75,000 troops from the East Front to the Western Front.

Jan 8,    Mississippi became the first state to ratify the proposed 18th amendment to the US Constitution, which established Prohibition.

Jan 10, The US House of Representatives passed women's suffrage. The 19th Amendment for women's suffrage was also known as the Anthony Amendment in honor of Susan B. Anthony.

Jan 28, Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae (b.1872), Canadian MD and author of the poem Flanders Field (1915), died.

Jan 28, Leon Trotsky became leader of the Russian Communists.

Jan 31, Russia joined the rest of the world and adopted the Gregorian calendar. The next day became February 14, 1918.

Feb 5, The Soviets proclaimed the separation of church and state.

Feb 6, Britain granted women  30 and over the right to vote.

Feb 20, The Soviet Red Army seized Kiev, the capital of the Ukraine.

Mar 5, The Soviets moved the capital of Russia from Petrograd to Moscow.

Mar 9, Russian Bolshevik Party became the Communist Party.

Mar 14, An all-Russian Congress of Soviets ratified a peace treaty with the Central Powers.

Mar 22, Ukrainian mobs massacred the Jews of Seredino Buda.

Mar 31, Daylight Savings Time went into effect throughout the U.S. for the first time.

Mar, A flu epidemic began at Fort Riley, Kansas, where 48 men died. It was carried by recruits to Europe where it mutated and returned with a vengeance. [see May, 1918] The Spanish flu was later found to have been caused by a genetic fusion of pig and human viruses.

Apr 4, Battle of Somme [France], an offensive by the British against the German Army ended

Apr 21, Baron Manfred von Richthofen (25), the highest-scoring German ace of World War I with 80 victories, was killed in a dogfight over France's Somme Valley over Amiens. As he pursued a Canadian pilot with jammed guns, von Richthofen, flying a red Fokker triplane, broke one of his own flying rules by following his prey too long, too far and too low.

May, The German army staged a surprise offensive and rolled into the Marne Valley through the center of the French 6th Army. The Germans were held at bay by some 9,000 US Marines of the 5th and 6th Regiments of the 4th Brigade.

Jun 26, After a brief respite, the Germans began firing their huge 420 mm howitzer "Big Bertha" at Paris. During World War I, Germany’s 98-ton howitzer used to shell Verdun and Liege

Jul 17, Russian Tsar, Nicholas II, was executed at Ekaterinburg by the Bolsheviks under orders from Lenin. His wife, son, 4 daughters, and 4 servants were also executed. The family mass grave was discovered by a former KGB agent in 1979 in the Urals and only 9 bodies were found

Jul 19, German armies retreated across the Marne River in France.

Aug 6, The 2nd battle of the Marne ended.

Aug 16, US troops overthrew Archangel (Russia).

Aug, Lenin gave a command to suppress a peasant revolt in Penza with orders to hang no fewer than one hundred known kulaks.

Sep 1, US troops landed in Vladivostok, Siberia, and stayed until 1920.

Sep 11, US troops landed in Russia to fight the Bolsheviks.

Sep 29, Allied forces scored a decisive breakthrough of the Hindenburg Line

Oct 1, Damascus (Syria) fell to Arab forces as Turkish Ottoman officials surrendered the city.

Oct 8, Sgt. Alvin C. York almost single-handedly killed 25 German soldiers and captured 132 in the Argonne Forest in France. Corporal Alvin C. York's platoon was advancing toward the Decauville railway when they were hit with machine-gun fire from all sides. The doughboys captured one gun, but the noise drew the fire of the remaining German emplacements, killing six and seriously wounding three Americans. As the most senior of the remaining doughboys, York went out alone to engage the enemy with just his rifle and service revolver, picking off the machine-gunners one by one. York had single-handedly eliminated 35 machine guns, killed more than 20 Germans and taken 132 members of a Prussian Guards regiment as prisoners. A modest man, York shrugged off his heroic actions, saying, "It's over; let's forget it."

Oct 17, Yugoslavia proclaimed itself a republic.

Oct 20, Germany aimed at an armistice and agreed to further concessions.

Oct 22, The cities of Baltimore and Washington run out of coffins during the "Spanish Influenza" epidemic.

Oct 23, President Wilson felt satisfied that the Germans were accepting his armistice terms and agreed to transmit their request for an armistice to the Allies. The Germans had agreed to suspend submarine warfare, cease inhumane practices such as the use of poison gas, and withdraw troops back into Germany.

Oct 26, Germany’s supreme commander, General Erich Ludendorff, resigned, protesting the terms to which the German Government had agreed in negotiating the armistice. This set the stage for his later support for Hitler and the Nazis, who claimed that Germany did not lose the war on the battlefield but were "stabbed in the back" by politicians.
1918        Oct 31, In the worst global epidemic of the century, influenza (an acute, contagious respiratory viral infection) had been spreading around the world since May. Before it ended in 1919 20 million people were killed worldwide, about twice as many as World War I, with about 500-600,000 of them in the US. October was the deadliest month and some 195,000 died. It was estimated that 20-40 million people died worldwide.

Oct-Nov, Some 2,021 people in SF died of the flu. San Franciscans wore protective face masks during the [Spanish] flu epidemic of this year. Researchers in 1997 attempted to isolate the virus from victims buried in the Arctic and Alaska.

Nov 3, The Austro-Hungarian Empire dissolved.

Nov 3, There was a mutiny of the German fleet at Kiel.This was the first act leading to German's capitulation in World War I.

Nov 4, Austria signed an armistice with Allies.

Nov 9, Germany was proclaimed a republic. Kaiser Wilhelm II announced that he would abdicate. He then fled to the Netherlands.

Nov 11, At ten minutes past five in the morning, German and Allied negotiators placed the final signatures on the armistice that would end World War I six hours later.

Nov 17, Influenza deaths reported in the U.S. far exceeded World War I casualties.

Nov 28, Kaiser Wilhelm of Prussia and Germany, abdicated.

Dec 3, The Allied Conference ended in London; Germany was required to pay to full limits for the war.

Dec 7, Spartacists called for a German revolution.

-GM bought Chevrolet.

-The influenza epidemic killed 11,000 people in Philadelphia.

People in San Francisco wore protective face masks during the [Spanish]  flu epidemic of this year

-In Canada Vancouver workers staged a general strike after a union organizer was killed under mysterious circumstances by a posse seeking draft dodgers outside the mining town of Cumberland.

-Nikolay Bukharin, member of the central committee of the Bolshevik Party and editor of Pravda, led the "Left Communists" in opposition to V.I. Lenin's signing the Brest-Litovsk treaty with Germany and withdrawing Russia from World War I. .

-The Influenza Pandemic killed between 20 and 40 million people worldwide. It has been cited as one of the most devastating epidemics in history, its toll surpassing the number of people killed in WWI and the Black Death Plague outbreak of 1347 to 1351. More than 28% of Americans were infected with influenza and 600,000 died, suffocating as their lungs filled with fluid. As the numbers of patients soared, medical personnel and facilities were overwhelmed and emergency tent hospitals, such as the one seen above, were established in many cities. At the height of the epidemic, the death rate was so high that a nationwide shortage of gravediggers and caskets resulted. While the terrifying epidemic continued into 1919, the number of deaths began to decline in November 1918, as the number of susceptible people dwindled.

-The war of attrition continues in Russia. The Belarussians or White Russians, joined by many émigrés, almost destroy the Communist Revolution but fail.

1919       


Jan. 5, The National Socialist Party (Nazi) formed.

Jan 13, California voted to ratify the Prohibition amendment.

Jan 16, Nebraska, Wyoming and Missouri became the 36th, 37th and 38th states to ratify Prohibition, which went into effect a year later. Prohibition became law in the US with the passage of the Volstead Act on Oct 28, which enforced and defined the 18th Amendment. It was passed over President Wilson's veto with the necessary two-thirds majority of state ratification.

Jan 18, The World War I Peace Congress, held to negotiate peace treaties ending World War I, opened in Versailles, France.

Jan 25, The League of Nations plan was adopted by the Allies.

Feb 23, Fascist Party was formed in Italy by Benito Mussolini.

Feb 27, The Bolsheviks took Lithuania and joined it with Belarus as a single Soviet republic.

Mar 19, A typhoid epidemic raged in Petrograd, Russia, killing 200 daily.

Mar 30, Gandhi announced resistance against Rowlatt Act.

Apr 20, Polish Army captured Vilno (Vilnius), Lithuania from Soviet Army.

May 6, Paris Peace Conference disposed of German colonies; German East Africa was assigned to Britain & France, German SW Africa to South Africa

Jun 6, Finland declared war on Bolsheviks.

Jun 20, Treaty of Versailles: Germany ended the incorporation of Austria.

Jun 28, The Treaty of Versailles was signed in France, ending (WW I) World War I. The first world war began in 1914 and ended on this date. Germany signed the Treaty of Versailles under protest

Jul 31, Germany's Weimar Constitution was adopted by the republic's National Assembly. The Weimar Republic became Germany’s 1st democratic government.

Aug 10, Ukrainian National Army massacred 25 Jews in Podolia, Ukraine.

Aug 31, John Reed formed the Communist Labor Party in Chicago, with the motto, "Workers of the world unite!"

Aug, The British regime banned Ireland’s Sinn Fein.

Sep 11, US marines invaded Honduras (again).

Sep 12, Adolf Hitler joined the German Worker's Party. In 2004 Robert O. Paxton authored "The Anatomy of Fascism," on the rise and fall of Hitler and Mussolini.

Sep 27, British troops withdrew from Archangel.

Oct 8, The U.S. Senate and House of Representatives passed the Volstead Prohibition Enforcement Bill. It was named for Representative Andrew Volstead of Minnesota and enforced the ban on the sale or consumption of alcoholic beverages. This rang in the era of prohibition. 1920        Jan 2, Isaac


1920       


Jan 14, Berlin was placed under martial law as 40,000 radicals rushed the Reichstag; 42 are dead and 105 are wounded.

Jan 16, Prohibition began as the 18th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution took effect. It was later repealed by the 21st Amendment. Alcohol was outlawed in the US with the passage of the 18th amendment. It was made law on Jan 16,1919, but became effective on this day. At the time US authorities expected few violations of the new law. Over the next fourteen years,

Jan 19, US Senate voted against membership in the League of Nations.

Feb 1, The Royal North West Mounted Police was formed as the Royal Northwest Mounted Police merged with Dominion Police and incorporated as the federal organization called the Dominion Police. The name Royal Canadian Mounted Police was adopted.

Feb 24, A fledgling German political party held its first meeting of importance at Hofbrauhaus in Munich; it became known as the Nazi Party, and its chief spokesman was Adolf Hitler.

Mar 13, The Kapp Putsch took place, involving a group of Freikorps troops who gained control of Berlin and installed Wolfgang Kapp as chancellor. The national government fled to Stuttgart and called for a general strike. The strike crippled Germany's ravaged economy and the Kapp government collapsed after only four days on March 17.

Apr 1, Germany's Workers Party changed its name to Nationalist Socialist German Worker's Party (Nazis). The National Socialist (Nazi) party was born in Munich in the 1920s.

Apr 24, British Mandate over Palestine went into effect and lasted for 28 years. The British organized a police force with some 3,000 British, Arab and Jewish officers.

Jun 13, The U.S. Post Office Department ruled that children may not be sent by parcel post.

Jun 15, Three African Americans were lynched in Duluth, Minnesota, by a white mob of 5,000.

Aug 10, The Ottoman sultanate at Constantinople signed the Treaty of Sevres with the Allies and associated powers. It promised a homeland for the Kurds, but the nationalist government in Ankara did not sign the treaty. It set the borders of Turkey recognized Armenia as an independent state.

Aug 18, Tennessee became the 36th state to ratify the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, which guaranteed the right of all American women to vote. This completed the three-quarters necessary to put the amendment into effect

Sep 27, Eight Chicago White Sox players were charged with fixing the 1919 World Series.

Nov 2, The first radio broadcast in the United States was made from Pittsburgh. Westinghouse built a radio station on its factory roof. KDKA in Pittsburgh broadcast returns from the Harding-Cox presidential election.

Nov 21, Mussolini's squad began terror and 11 died in Bologna, Italy.

Dec 14, George Gipp (b.1895) died in Indiana from pneumonia and a strep infection during his senior year at Notre Dame. He was buried in northern Michigan. Gipp was the school's first All-American and set a school career rushing record that stood for more than 50 years. Ronald Reagan portrayed Gipp in the 1940 movie "Knute Rockne, All American," in which he made famous the phrase "win one for the Gipper."

-Charles Ponzi (37), an immigrant from Italy, began selling notes in Boston with 50% interest payments payable in 45 days. In 1921 he pleaded guilty to mail fraud. He was released from prison in 1924 and went to Florida for the land boom offering investors profits of 200%. He again spent time in jail and was eventually deported and died broke.

-In the late 1920s the Cosa Nostra was formed with 24 crime families coast to coast. Each family had an identical paramilitary structure with a national commission that set rules and policies. This structure was not publicly revealed until the public testimony of Joe Valachi in 1964

-Arthur Meighen, Unionist Party, served as the 9th Prime Minister of Canada.


1921       


Feb 20, Riza Khan Pahlevi seized control of Iran. Pahlevi marched into Tehran with 2,500 soldiers and took over the government. Britain helped topple the Qajar dynasty and replaced it with Reza Shah Pahlavi, a former military officer.

Mar 21, Lenin’s New Economic Policy (NEP) was promulgated by decree.

Jul 27, Canadians Sir Frederick Banting and Charles Best isolated insulin at the University of Toronto.

Jul 29, Adolf Hitler became the president of the Nationalist Socialist German Workers’ Party

Dec 6, British and Irish representatives signed a treaty in London providing for creation of an Irish -Free State a year later on the same date. The partition created Northern Ireland. Ireland’s 26 southern counties became independent from Britain forming the Irish Free State.

-Mao Tse-tung, a young librarian, formed the Chinese Communist Party. Their 1st meeting was held in Shanghai.

-Mohandas Gandhi began peaceful the noncooperation movement against British rule. The Non-cooperation Movement of 1920-'22 sought to induce the British government to grant self-government to India. The movement grew from the Amritsar massacre of April 1919, when the British killed some 400 Indians. The movement marked the transition of Indian nationalism from a middle class to a mass movement

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