Douglas C-47 Skytrain of US Air Transport Command, 1940s (US Air Force photo)
75 Years Ago—Aug. 26, 1942: Mussolini’s oldest son, Benito, whom he denied, is murdered in an asylum in Mombello, Italy, where he’d been forcibly interned, age 26.
First US Army Air Force C-47 cargo planes depart for Britain (51st Troop Carrier Wing).
The Duke of Kent shakes hands with a BOAC pilot as he boards a Liberator of Ferry Command, Prestwick, Scotland, 1941-43. (Imperial War Museum)
75 Years Ago—Aug. 25, 1942: RAF officer Prince George, Duke of Kent, brother of King George VI, is killed in a plane crash in Scotland, age 39, the first death of a member of the Royal family in military service in 450 years.
Japanese land at Milne Bay on Papua New Guinea.
Bomb exploding on the flight deck of carrier USS Enterprise during Battle of the Eastern Solomons, 24 Aug 1942 (US National Archives)
75 Years Ago—Aug. 24, 1942: In the Battle of the Eastern Solomons, aircraft from carrier USS Saratoga sink Japanese carrier Ryujo; Japanese carrier aircraft damage carrier USS Enterprise.
In one of the last cavalry charges in history, Italians successfully charge Soviets at Izbushensky, Russia.
US and Mexico agree to allow Mexican temporary farm workers in US; 200,000 Mexican braceros will work in US during war.
US poster, WWII
Children’s Khorovod (Barmaley Fountain), Stalingrad, Russia, Aug 1942 (public domain via WW2 Database)
75 Years Ago—Aug. 23, 1942: Battle of Stalingrad officially begins: German Army Group B reaches the Volga River near Stalingrad.
Soldiers of the Brazilian Expeditionary Force during the Battle of Monte Castello, Italy, 29 November 1944 (public domain via Wikipedia)
75 Years Ago—Aug. 22, 1942: Brazil declares war on Germany and Italy after 16 ships lost to German U-boats, opening airbases to cover Allied shipping and opening the South Atlantic air route; Brazil will be the only South American country to send troops to fight overseas—Brazilian troops will serve with distinction in Italy.
Germans reach northern suburbs of Stalingrad.
Capitol Records releases its first hit, Ella Mae Morse’s “Cow Cow Boogie.”
Map of the Battle of the Tenaru River, Guadalcanal, 21 Aug 1942 (US Army Center of Military History)
75 Years Ago—Aug. 21, 1942: Japanese attack on Guadalcanal at the Ilu (Tenaru) River, but are soundly defeated by US Marines.
In Hartford, CT, five German spies are convicted of espionage, including Gerhard Kunze, the former leader of the German-American Bund (a Nazi group).
US Marine Corps (and maybe Navy) Grumman F4F-4 Wildcats at Henderson Field, Guadalcanal, 1942 (US Navy photo)
75 Years Ago—Aug. 20, 1942: “Cactus Air Force” arrives at Henderson Field on Guadalcanal: 31 US Marine F4F-4s and SBD-3s.
US Twelfth Air Force activated at Bolling Field, DC, under Lt. Col. Roger Browne, designated to go to North Africa.
Dim-out regulations issued on US West Coast.
Patch of the US Twelfth Air Force
British Churchill tanks and landing craft burning on the Dieppe beach, France, 19 Aug 1942 (public domain via WW2 Database)
75 Years Ago—Aug. 19, 1942: British & Canadians make disastrous raid on Dieppe, France; of 6100 soldiers, 1179 are killed, 2190 captured—mostly Canadians.
Forty-nine US Rangers participate in Dieppe raid in first combat by these commando troops.
RAF Mustang I fighter planes (P-51s) cover Dieppe raid—first victory by a Mustang.
75 Years Ago—Aug. 18, 1942: Japanese land at Basabua near Gona, New Guinea, undetected.
Lt. Col. Evans Carlson, USMC, Carlson’s Raiders, after the Makin Island Raid, August 1942 (US Naval History and Heritage Command)
75 Years Ago—Aug. 17, 1942: US Eighth Air Force flies first official bombing mission: 12 B-17s of 97th Bomb Group hit marshalling yards in Rouen, France.
“Carlson’s Raiders”: 221 US Marines conduct two-day raid on Makin in the Gilbert Islands to destroy a radio station; first amphibious landing from subs.