EVENTS IN MILITARY HISTORY
JAN | FEB |
MAR | APR |
MAY | JUN |
JUL | AUG |
SEP | OCT | NOV |
1777 - General George Washington
defeats the British led by British General Lord Charles Cornwallis, at
Princeton, New Jersey (War of Independence)
1911 - Naval Lieutenant Eugene Ely
became the first man ever to land an airplane on the deck of a ship, the
converted cruiser USS Pennsylvania, in San Francisco Bay.
1915 - Congress established the
United States Coast Guard.
1923 - American occupation forces,
stationed in Germany since the close of World War I, were recalled.
1942 - U.S. and Filipino troops
complete their withdrawal to a new defensive line along the base of the
Bataan peninsula (WW II)
1944 - Allies Land at Anzio, Italy
(World War II)
1945 - The Battle of the Bulge ended
(World War II)
1951 - Chinese communist forces
captured Seoul, Korea, from United Nations troops (Korean War)
1951 - Operation Thunderbolt began
1959 - Fidel Castro took control of
1966 - American forces move into the
Mekong Delta for the first time (Vietnam War)
1967 - Operation Cedar Falls began
against the Communist-held Iron Triangle area north of Saigon (Vietnam
1968 - Battle of Khe Sanh began
1968 - Tet Offensive began (Vietnam
1968 - Battle of Hue began (Vietnam
1973 - Signing of the Vietnam Peace
Accord (Vietnam War)
1991 - Allies start Operation Desert
Storm with attacks on Iraq (Persian Gulf War)
1763 - Treaty of Paris ended the
Seven Years War in Europe
1778 - The American frigate Ranger carried the Stars and Stripes to a
foreign port for the first time as it arrived in France
1795 - Navy Supply Corps established
1813 - The American ship USS Hornet sank the British sloop HMS Peacock
in an action off the coast of Guiana (north coast of South America)
during the war of 1812
1836 - Mexican General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna began his siege of
the Alamo Spanish mission in San Antonio, Texas.
1863 - General Joseph Hooker organized the Army of the Potomac
1863 - The Confederate ship Nashville was destroyed by the Union
ironclad vessel USS Montauk on the Ogeechee River in Georgia during the
American Civil War
1865 - The battle of Petersburg (American Civil War)
1898 - The battleship USS Maine was sunk following an explosion in the
harbor of Havana, Cuba.
1916 - The German Fleet was given orders to attack armed Allied merchant
ships without warning during WWI.
1916 - Beginning of the battle of Verdun, in France, which lasted ten
months (WW I)
1917 - British intelligence intercepted the "Zimmerman telegram," sent
to the Mexican government by the German foreign minister, promising
Mexico that the lands taken from it by the U.S. during the 1846-1848 war
would be returned if Mexico entered World War I on Germany's side and
the Germans won. The message was promptly relayed to the U.S. Government
1942 - A Japanese submarine surfaced off the coast of California,
shelling the coastline near the town of Ellwood.
1943 - Women's Marine Corps Auxiliary established.
1943 - The German Afrika Korps defeated American forces during the
battle of Kasserine Pass, in Tunisia (WW II)
1944 - Beginning of the German Army offensive against the Anzio
bridgehead in Italy (WW II)
1944 - U.S. Marines seized Parry Island from Japanese forces, completing
their takeover of the Marshall Islands in the Central Pacific (WW II)
1945 - U.S. Marines began the invasion of Iwo Jima in the Western
Pacific (WW II)
1966 - Operation White Wing, a search and destroy mission during the
1802 - Congress established the U.S.
Military Academy at West Point, N.Y.
1815 - Congress declared war against
the Barbary Pirates in Algeria, seeking an end to their interference
with American shipping in the Mediterranean Sea.
1836 - End of 13 day siege of the
Alamo, San Antonio TX, where 183 Americans held off 3,000 Mexican
1846 - American forces under General
Zachary Taylor moved across the Rio Grande River into Mexican territory,
officially beginning hostilities during the Mexican War.
1862 - Confederate ironclad CSS
Virginia destroyed Union vessels USS Cumberland and USS Congress, and
damaged the USS Minnesota in waters off Hampton Roads and Fort Monroe,
1915 - Congress established the U. S.
1918 - Second Battle of the Somme in
France began with a German offensive.
1941 - General Erwin Rommel began his
first offensive against the British Army in Libya.
1942 - The first American "Seabees"
saw action in New Caledonia, an island in the southwest Pacific, as they
landed and began construction of base facilities.
1949 - U.S. Air Force Captain James
Gallagher completed the first non-stop flight around the world,
refueling several times in mid flight.
1965 - First US ground combat force,
the 3,500 man 9th Marine Expeditionary Brigade, arrived at Danang, South
1972 - North Vietnamese forces
launched a massive attack south across the Demilitarized zone, during
the Vietnam War.
1775 - British troops under LTC
Francis Smith, with MAJ John Pitcairn, Royal Marines, as second in
command, marched to Lexington MA and fired on American minutemen on the
town green, beginning the American Revolution (Revolutionary War).
1776 - The Continental brig Lexington captures the British ship Edward.
1836 - General Sam Houston and his Texan forces defeated Mexican General
Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna at the Battle of San Jacinto (War for Texas
1861 - South Carolina state troops under GEN P.G. T. Beauregard began
the bombardment of Fort Sumter, in the harbor of Charleston, SC,
beginning the Civil War
1865 - GEN Robert E. Lee surrendered his remaining Confederate forces to
GEN Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Courthouse, Virginia, effectively
ending the Civil War.
1893 - Rank of Chief Petty Officer created in the United States Navy
1908 - United States Army Reserve established
1915 - Poison gas was first used in battle by the Germans against the
British at the Battle of Ypers, Belgium (World War I).
1917 - The Navy takes control of all wireless radio stations in the
1941 - German Luftwaffe raid on the city of Coventry, England. Much of
the city was destroyed, including parts of the medieval cathedral.
Winston Churchill, the British prime minister, had advance notice of the
raid as the Allies had the German "Ultra" code, but Churchill could not
warn the city, lest the Germans became aware of how Churchill had
received the information (WWII).
1942 - Fall of Bataan and start of the Bataan Death March (WWII).
1942 - The Navy accepts African Americans for general service.
1945 - Lieutenant Junior Grade Ann Purvis and Ensign Jane Kendeigh
become the first Navy flight nurses to land on an active battlefield
1945 - Carrier aircraft defeat the last Japanese Navy sortie at the
Battle of East China Sea; Yamato, the world's largest battleship, and
five other ships are sunk.
1945 - Invasion of Okinawa began (WW II).
1945 - German Unconditional Surrender to Italian Allies (WW II).
1945 - American planes sank the IJNS Yamato, largest battleship ever
built, off the Japanese coast. The Yamato had never fired a shot against
an enemy vessel (WWII).
1953 - Battle of Pork Chop Hill (Hill 255) began (Korean War).
1968 - Operation Pegasus was launched by the 1st Air Cavalry Division to
relieve the marines at Khe Sanh (Vietnam War).
1975 - The former imperial capital of Hue fell to North Vietnamese
troops, along with the entire Thua Thien Province (Vietnam War).
1979 - The first Trident submarine, USS Ohio (SSBN 726), is launched at
1991 - Persian Gulf War official cease fire begins (Persian Gulf War).
1756 - French & Indian War began,
lasting for seven years.
1846 - The U.S. declared war against Mexico. Mexican troops under
General Mariano Arista were defeated at Palo Alto, Texas, by U.S. Army
under General Zachary Taylor. (Mexican American War)
1863 - Confederate General Robert E. Lee defeated Union troops under
Union General Joseph Hooker at the Battle of Chancellorsville, VA, with
the considerable aid of Confederate General Thomas J. (Stonewall)
Jackson, who decisively routed the Union right wing. (Civil War)
1940 - German troops invaded Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg.
1942 - Congress created the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC).
1942 - Fall of Corregidor (WW II)
1942 - Battle of the Coral Sea, the first major naval action fought
without either side having visual contact with enemy forces. (WW II)
1945 - German forces surrendered Berlin to the Russians. (WW II)
1945 - The German military in Europe surrendered unconditionally to GEN
Eisenhower and other allied commanders in a French school building at
Rheims, France, ending World War II in Europe. V-E Day (Victory in
Europe Day) was formally proclaimed on 8 May. (WW II)
1968 - Mini-Tet (Vietnam War)
1972 - Operation Linebacker (Vietnam War)
1975 - Capture and Release of SS Mayaguez by Khmer Rouge forces, the
first battle action of the United States Navy boarding a ship at sea
1775 - The United States Army was
founded. The Continental Congress named Colonel George Washington of
Virginia Commander-in-Chief of the American Army.
1865 - The American Civil War
ended with the surrender of the last Southern forces, led by GEN Edmund
Kirby-Smith, at Shreveport LA (Civil War)
1877 - Henry Ossian Flipper, the
first African-American graduate of West Point, was commissioned a second
1916 - Congress authorized The
Army Reserve Officers Training Corps.
1927 - Captain Charles A. Lindbergh, an Army reservist, completed the
first non-stop transatlantic airplane flight from New York to Paris in
1940 - The British began evacuating 338,000 British and French troops
from Dunkirk, a Belgian coastal city. (WW II)
1941 - Allies invade Syria and Lebanon (WW II)
1941 - Germany attacks the Soviet Union (WW II)
1942 - The decisive Battle of Midway opened in the Central Pacific. (WW
1944 - D-Day invasion of Normandy by Allied troops. Operation "Overlord"
was the largest air and sea operation in military history. (WW II)
1944 - The Battle of Saipan (WW II)
1944 - GI Bill signed into law.
1949 - The first African-American graduate of the Naval Academy was W.A.
1950 - The Korean War began with US troops arriving on June 29th.
1951 - The US Eighth Army launched attacks against Chinese forces all
along the front lines in Korea, slowly driving the enemy back. (Korean
1967 - The USS Liberty was attacked by Israel, a controversy that
1972 - The National Committee for Employer Support of the National Guard
and Reserve created.
1775 - George Washington took
command of the Continental Army at Cambridge, MA. (American
1814 - American force led by GEN Jacob Brown defeated British force led
by GEN Phineas Riall at Chippewa River, just north of British Fort Erie
(near Niagara Falls, NY). A gray-uniformed Brigade led by young American
BG Winfield Scott drove the British back. Scott's men wore gray because
Army contractors had run out of blue cloth. To this day, West Point
cadets wear gray to commemorate this victory (War of 1812).
1863 - Confederate forces under GEN Robert E. Lee, defeated after three
days of fighting at the battle of Gettysburg, PA, began their withdrawal
to the South (American Civil War).
1898 - American naval victory over the Spanish at Santiago, Cuba
1907 - Founding of the Aeronautical Division of the US Army Signal
Office; the forerunner of the US Army Air Force and later the U.S. Air
1914 - World War I began
1915 - U.S. Marines landed in Haiti following the assassination of the
Haitian president Vilbrun Guillaume. The Marines remained as occupation
forces for nine years.
1918 - Establishment of the Army Warrant Officer Corps in the Mine
Planter Service of the Coast Artillery (Official Birthday 9 July 1918)
1918 - Beginning of the Second Battle of the Marne in Northern France
between German forces on one side and French, American, British, and
Italian troops on the other side. The battle ended on 4 August (World
1926 - U.S. Army Air Corps established.
1943 - The U.S. Army's Fourth Division, part of General Omar Bradley's
II Corps, captured San Stefano in Sicily (World War II).
1944 - The island of Saipan in the Marianas (Western Pacific) fell to
U.S. troops following their defeat of Japanese defenders (World War II).
Napalm was used for the first time during the American invasion of
Tinian in the Marianas.
1950 - General of the Army Douglas MacArthur was named commander of all
UN forces in Korea (Korean Conflict).
1953 - The Korean War ended.
1970 - Siege of Fire Base Ripcord began (Vietnam War)
1973 - Congress refuses to extend the military draft law. The military
draft expired automatically on July 1, 1973
1782 - The Purple Heart Medal was
established by Congress.
1790 - US Coast Guard established.
1801 - The USS Enterprise seized the Tripolitan corsair Tripoli in naval
action in the Mediterranean Sea (War with Tripoli).
1864 - Admiral David Farragut, USN, exclaiming "Damn the torpedoes, full
speed ahead," ran through a Confederate minefield at Mobile Bay,
Alabama, and captured a defending group of Confederate ships (American
1914 - Germany declared war on Russia and France declared full
mobilization for war (World War I).
1914 - Britain declared war on Austria-Hungary (World War I).
1941 - Beginning of the three-year siege of Leningrad by German troops
(World War II).
1942 - US Marines landed on Guadalcanal, in the Solomon Islands, the
first American amphibious operation in World War II.
1945 - The US Army Air Force bomber Enola Gay, piloted by COL Paul
Tibbets, dropped the first atomic bomb on the city of Hiroshima, Japan.
(World War II).
1945 - The second atomic bomb is dropped by a U.S. plane on Nagasaki,
1945 - The Empire of Japan surrendered to the Allied forces, ending
World War II.
1950 - Defense of Pusan/Naktong Perimeter began (Korean War).
1952 - The Battle of Bunker Hill (Hill 122) began (Korean War).
1982 - Eight hundred U.S. Marines landed in Beirut, Lebanon, as part of
a multinational force overseeing the withdrawal of PLO fighters.
1990 - Operation Desert Shield began.
The Peace Treaty of Versailles was signed between the USA, Britain,
France, and Spain, ending the American Revolution.
1787 - United States Constitution Approved
1814 - US Naval Captain Oliver Hazard Perry defeated a British flotilla
in the Battle of Lake Erie (War of 1812).
1814 - During a British naval attack on the City of Baltimore, Francis
Scott Key composed a poem entitled "The Star Spangled Banner."
1847 - American forces captured Mexico City, effectively ending the
1864 - Confederate troops abandoned Atlanta in the face of continuing
attacks by federals under General W.S. Sherman (Civil War).
1899 - Founding of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States
1908 - LT Thomas E. Selfridge was killed at Ft. Myer, VA, in a plane
flown by Orville Wright. Selfridge was the first man to die in an
1939 - German troops invaded Poland, beginning World War II.
1939 - Britain and France declared war on Germany (World War II).
1941 - British Naval forces sank the German battleship Bismarck off the
French coast (World War II).
1943 - The allied invasion of Italy began (World War II).
1945 - V-J Day, Japan signed formal surrender (World War II).
1951 - Battle of Heart Break Ridge began (Korean War).
1962 - United States Naval Sea Cadet Corps Incorporated
1967 - Siege of Con Thien Began (Vietnam War).
1969 - President Richard Nixon ordered resumption of heavy bombing of
North Vietnamese targets (Vietnam War)
1994 - Operation Uphold Democracy began (Haiti).
- British troops under General Lord Charles Cornwallis surrendered to
General Washington at Yorktown, Virginia, effectively ending the
1775 - The US Navy was established.
1901 - The first British Navy submarine was commissioned.
1944 - Battle of Leyte Gulf
1950 - The invasion of North Korea started.
1952 - Battle of Hill 598 began, Korean War
1957 - The Soviet Union launched Sputnik I, first man-made earth
1962 - The U.S. began its blockade of Cuba to compel the Russians to
remove long-range missiles aimed at the United States.
1964 - The Chinese exploded their first atomic bomb.
1965 - The Battle of the La Drang Valley, Vietnam War.
1968 - The Bombing of North Vietnam ended.
1969 - Battle of Loc Ninh, Vietnam War
1971 - Operation Jefferson Glenn, the last major operation in which US
ground forces participated in Vietnam
1973 - Egypt and Syria launched military offensive against Israel
1983 -Terrorist attack on Marine Barracks, Beirut
1983 - Operation Urgent Fury, Grenada
1993 - Battle of Bakhara Market, Mogadishu, Somalia
2000 - Bombing of the USS Cole by Al-Queda terrorists
2001 - Operation Enduring Freedom began in Afghanistan
2001 - War on Terror Began
1775 - Continental Congress
establishes two battalions of Marines. Samuel Nicholas was appointed
"Captain of Marines" on 28 November 1775, and promoted to major on June
25, 1776. Because of his senior status among other Marine officers of
the Revolution, he is numbered as the first Commandant.
1775 - Americans under General Richard Montgomery capture the British
fort of Saint Johns. (War of Independence)
1861 - The Confederate raider Nashville captured and burned the Union
clipper ship Harvey Birch in the Atlantic Ocean. (Civil War)
1864 - Union General W.T. Sherman began his march to the sea from
Atlanta, GA, in an effort to cut the Confederacy in two. (Civil War)
1865 - Dr. Mary E. Walker, the first female surgeon in the Union Army,
is presented with the Medal of Honor, the first woman to receive that
1910 - First airplane flight
from the deck of a ship.
1917 - American troops were first engaged in fighting attacking German
troops near the Rhine-Marne Canal in France. (World War I)
1918 - World War I ends at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the
eleventh month with the signing of an Armistice. (World War I)
1942 - Operation Torch begins with Allied landings in northwest Africa
(World War II).
1943 - U.S. Marines landed on Tarawa in the Gilbert Islands, one of the
bloodiest campaigns waged by American forces against the Japanese in the
Pacific (World War II).
1965 - Battle of Chu Pon-ia Drang River, Vietnam. U.S. 1st Calvary
fought North Vietnamese regulars for four days (Vietnam War).
1967 - American troops broke a North Vietnamese assault at Loc Ninh,
near the Cambodian border (Vietnam War).
1968 - Battle of Nui Chom Mountain. The 4th Bn, 31st Infantry, 196th Inf
Bde fought and destroyed the 21st NVA Regiment on Nui Chom Mountain
southwest of Da Nang, Vietnam in a fierce six day battle. Cpl Michael
Crescenz received the Medal of Honor as they fought inch by inch up the
steep mountain. (Vietnam War)
1775 - The first official American
flag (not the Stars and Stripes) was raised for the first time over the
Navy flagship Alfred.
1778 - British troops under COL
Archibald Campbell occupied Savannah, GA (American Revolution).
1812 - The US frigate Constitution
defeats the British frigate Java (War of 1812).
1814 - Treaty of Ghent (Belgium)
signed, ending the War of 1812 between the United States and England.
1846 - American troops occupied
Ciudad Victoria in northeastern Mexico (Mexican War).
1860 - South Carolina secedes from
the Union and South Carolina troops seize the Federal arsenal in
Charleston (Civil War).
1898 - The Treaty of Paris was signed
by American and Spanish representatives, ending the Spanish-American
1921 - The first helium-filled
balloon, a U.S. Navy dirigible, flew from Hampton Roads, VA to
1941 - Japanese attack Pearl Harbor.
The United States declared war on Germany, Japan and Italy (World War
1944 - Battle of the Bulge began
(World War II).
1946 - The official end of World War
1972 - The Paris Peace talks
temporarily fail and President Nixon orders a resumption of full-scale
bombing of targets in North Vietnam (Vietnam War).
1989 - Operation Just Cause, the
invasion of Panama, begins.
1991 - The USSR went out of existence
after 74 years.
1992 - Operation Restore Hope -
America's intervention in Somalia began.
(Courtesy of the VetJobs.com
Veterans Eagle Monthly Newsletter)