Pennsylvania Turnpike, September 1942, with prewar 70 mph speed limit sign still in place after wartime “Victory speed limit” enacted (Library of Congress: fsa 8b07393).
80 Years Ago—Oct. 1, 1940: Uranium from the Belgian Congo arrives at Staten Island, NY, for safekeeping; it will be used in the Manhattan Project.
The Pennsylvania Turnpike, the United States’ first long-distance highway, opens.
Insignia of the US OSS (Office of Strategic Services) in WWII
75 Years Ago—Oct. 1, 1945: The US Army Air Forces in the Mediterranean Theater of Operations (AAF/MTO) is inactivated.
US Office of Strategic Service (precursor to CIA) is disbanded.
British Observer Corps aircraft spotter on the roof of a building in London during the Battle of Britain, with St. Paul’s Cathedral in the background (US National Archives: 541899)
80 Years Ago—Sept. 30, 1940: Luftwaffe launches last major daylight raid on London, then switches to night raids.
75 Years Ago—Sept. 30, 1945: US Marines land at Tientsin, China.
US ends War Savings Time (year-round Daylight Savings Time).
Hall of Transportation and Palace of Fine and Decorative Arts, Golden Gate International Exposition, Treasure Island, CA (Library of Congress)
80 Years Ago—Sept. 29, 1940: Golden Gate International Exposition in San Francisco closes (on Treasure Island).
75 Years Ago—Sept. 29, 1945: British troops land at Batavia, Java to combat Indonesian nationalists.
British poster, WWII (Imperial War Museum)
80 Years Ago—Sept. 28, 1940: Britain renews call to evacuate mothers and children from London (489,000 will be evacuated by October 17).
First of 50 WWI-era US destroyers traded to Britain arrives in the UK.
Uruguay cracks down on Nazi infiltrators and expels 13 German spies.
75 Years Ago—Sept. 28, 1945: US Office of Censorship is disbanded.
Indonesians riot against the Dutch.
Galeazzo Ciano of Italy, Joachim von Ribbentrop of Germany, and Saburō Kurusu of Japan signing the Tripartite Pact at the Reich Chancellery in Berlin, 27 Sep 1940 (public domain via WW2 Database)
80 Years Ago—Sept. 27, 1940: Germany, Italy, and Japan sign the Tripartite Pact.
Germans begin census of Jews in occupied France, conducted by French police; Jews are required to register with police station by October 20 and Jewish-owned shops must post yellow “Entreprise Juive” signs by October 31.
Movie premiere of Busby Berkeley musical Strike up the Band, starring Judy Garland & Mickey Rooney.
75 Years Ago—Sept. 27, 1945: US Air Transport Command begins “Sunset Project”: return of planes, crews & passengers from the Pacific.
Robert Patterson becomes US Secretary of War.
Premiere of Roberto Rossellini’s Roma, Città Aperta, the first Italian neorealist film.
Peter Dewey, WWII (Photo: US Office of Strategic Services)
80 Years Ago—Sept. 26, 1940: Due to Japanese occupation of French Indochina, US extends embargo to ban export of all scrap iron and steel to Japan.
75 Years Ago—Sept. 26, 1945: First US casualty in Vietnam (French Indochina)—OSS (precursor to CIA) officer Lt. Col. Peter Dewey is killed by Viet Minh in Saigon, mistaken for a Frenchman.
Hungarian classical composer Béla Bartók dies of leukemia in New York City, age 64.
Pres. Sergio Osmeña of the Philippines and his family, Malacañang Palace, 1945 (public domain via government of the Philippines, via Wikipedia)
80 Years Ago—Sept. 25, 1940: In Norway, Nazis ban the constitution and depose the king, and Reichskommissar Josef Terboven is installed as head of government.
Nouméa, New Caledonia sides with the Free French.
75 Years Ago—Sept. 25, 1945: The Nazi party is declared illegal in Germany.
Last Soviet forces depart from Norway.
In the Philippines, Pres. Sergio Osmeña establishes a People’s Court to try collaborators.
Flag of Malta, featuring the George Cross, awarded to Malta during WWII
80 Years Ago—Sept. 24, 1940: King George of England institutes the George Cross and George Medal for civilian valor.
Vichy France launches air raid on British Gibraltar.
Vichy governor of Dakar, French West Africa refuses to surrender to Free French and British; French West Africa will stay loyal to Vichy until November 1942.
75 Years Ago—Sept. 24, 1945: Movie premiere of Mildred Pierce, starring Joan Crawford, who will win an Oscar for her performance.
Bantam jeep, towing a 37 mm Gun M3 piece, jumping over a small hill, New River, NC, 1941 (Library of Congress)
80 Years Ago—Sept. 23, 1940: Free French and British attempt to land at Dakar in French West Africa, but are repelled by Vichy French forces.
The design for the jeep is submitted to the US Army by Bantam, originally called the Pilot.
Rubble from a destroyed Buddhist Temple in Nagasaki, Japan, 24 Sep 1945 (US National Archives: 127-N-136176)
75 Years Ago—Sept. 23, 1945: Egypt demands modification of Anglo-Egyptian Treaty of 1936 to end British military presence in Egypt and to annex Anglo-Egyptian Sudan (not complete until 1954-56).
US Marines land at Nagasaki, Japan.
Statue of Paul Revere, Boston, erected 22 September 1940 (Photo: Sarah Sundin, July 2014)
80 Years Ago—Sept. 22, 1940: Under Japanese pressure, Vichy France ratifies treaty allowing Japanese to occupy air bases and harbors in Indochina; Japanese troops enter French Indochina later that night.
In Boston, the statue of Paul Revere is unveiled in Paul Revere Mall near the Old North Church.
US Gen. George Patton and Soviet Gen. Georgy Zhukov, Berlin, Germany, 7 Sep 1945 (US National Archives)
75 Years Ago—Sept. 22, 1945: Patton publicly criticizes US “de-Nazification” process for German officers.
In Japan, US Marines land at Sasebo and Kure.