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Today in World War II History—October 20, 1939 & 1944

First edition cover of By the Shores of Silver Lake by Laura Ingalls Wilder

First edition cover of By the Shores of Silver Lake by Laura Ingalls Wilder

80 Years Ago—October 20, 1939: Laura Ingalls Wilder’s By the Shores of Silver Lake is published.

Pope Pius XII publishes his first encyclical, Summi pontificatus, decrying racism, dictators, and treaty violations.

Premiere of Marx Brothers movie At the Circus.

Gen. Douglas MacArthur wading ashore at Leyte, Philippine Islands, 20 October 1944 (US National Archives: 111-SC-407101)

Gen. Douglas MacArthur wading ashore at Leyte, Philippine Islands, 20 October 1944 (US National Archives: 111-SC-407101)

75 Years Ago—Oct. 20, 1944: US Sixth Army lands on Leyte in the Philippines, led by Gen. Douglas MacArthur, who declares, “I have returned.”

Soviets and Yugoslavian partisans take Belgrade, Yugoslavia.

In the October Revolution, the presidents of both Guatemala and El Salvador are overthrown in military coups.