Today In History - Tuesday, September 1st


Luxembourg became the first country to complete the move to all digital television broadcasting.

Seven members and former members of the AFL-CIO form a new trade union organization, the Change to Win Federation.

Beslan school hostage crisis: Day 1: The Beslan School hostage crisis commences when armed terrorists take hundreds of school children and adults hostage in the Russian town of Beslan in North Ossetia. The crisis would go on to last for another two days, ending on September 3.

The death of Diana, Princess of Wales is announced by Buckingham Palace.

Uzbekistan declares independence from the Soviet Union

The Communist Labour Party of Turkey/Leninist is founded, following a split from the Communist Labour Party of Turkey.

A joint American-French expedition locates the wreck of the RMS ''Titanic''.

Cold War: Korean Air Lines Flight 007 is shot down by a Soviet Union jet fighter when the commercial aircraft enters Soviet airspace. All 269 on board die, including Congressman Lawrence McDonald.

Canada adopts a Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms as part of its Constitution.
The United States Air Force Space Command is founded.

A coup d'état in the Central African Republic overthrows President David Dacko.

Terry Fox's Marathon of Hope ends in Thunder Bay, Ontario.
Major General Chun Doo-hwan becomes President of South Korea, following the resignation of Choi Kyu-hah.

The American space probe Pioneer 11 becomes the first spacecraft to visit Saturn when it passes the planet at a distance of 21,000 kilometres (13,000 mi).

The SR-71 Blackbird sets (and holds) the record for flying from New York to London: 1 hour 54 minutes and 56.4 seconds.
The SR-71 Blackbird sets (and holds) the record for flying from New York to London in the time of 1 hour, 54 minutes and 56.4 seconds at a speed of 1,435.587 miles per hour (2,310.353 km/h).

In Reykjavík, Iceland, American Bobby Fischer beats Russian Boris Spassky and becomes the world chess champion.

Attempted assassination of King Hussein of Jordan by Palestinian guerrillas, who attack his motorcade.

A revolution in Libya brings Col. Muammar al-Gaddafi to power, which was later transferred to the People's Committees.
Trần Thiện Khiêm becomes Prime Minister of South Vietnam under President Nguyễn Văn Thiệu.


Indian Oil Corporation formed after merging Indian Oil Refineries and Indian Oil Company.

Channel Television launches to 54,000 households in the Channel Islands.

The Eritrean War of Independence officially begins with the shooting of the Ethiopian police by Hamid Idris Awate.

Iceland expands its fishing zone, putting it into conflict with the United Kingdom, beginning the Cod Wars.

The Old Man and the Sea, the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Ernest Hemingway, is first published.

The United States, Australia and New Zealand sign a mutual defense pact, called the ANZUS Treaty.

World War II: Nazi Germany attacks Poland, beginning the war in Europe. (See Invasion of Poland.)
General George C. Marshall becomes Chief of Staff of the United States Army.
The Wound Badge for Wehrmacht, SS, Kriegsmarine, and Luftwaffe soldiers is instituted. The final version of the Iron Cross is also instituted on this date.
Switzerland mobilizes its forces and the Swiss Parliament elects Henri Guisan to head the Swiss Army (an event that can happen only during war or mobilization).
Adolf Hitler signs an order to begin the systematic euthanasia of mentally ill and disabled people.
The Invasion of Poland, also known as the September Campaign, or the 1939 Defensive War (Polish: Kampania wrześniowa or Wojna obronna 1939 roku) in Poland, and alternatively the Poland Campaign (German: Polenfeldzug) or Fall Weiß (Case White) in Germany, was a joint invasion of Poland by Germany, the Soviet Union, and a small Slovak contingent that marked the beginning of World War II in Europe. The German invasion began on 1 September 1939, one week after the signing of the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, while the Soviet invasion commenced on 17 September following the Molotov-Tōgō agreement which terminated the Russian and Japanese hostilities (Nomonhan incident) in the east on 16 September.[14] The campaign ended on 6 October with Germany and the Soviet Union dividing and annexing the whole of Poland.

The morning after the Gleiwitz incident, German forces invaded Poland from the north, south, and west. As the Germans advanced, Polish forces withdrew from their forward bases of operation close to the Polish–German border to more established lines of defence to the east. After the mid-September Polish defeat in the Battle of the Bzura, the Germans gained an undisputed advantage. Polish forces then withdrew to the southeast where they prepared for a long defence of the Romanian Bridgehead and awaited expected support and relief from France and the United Kingdom. Those two countries had pacts with Poland and had declared war on Germany on 3 September, though in the end their aid to Poland in the September campaign was very limited.

The Soviet Red Army's invasion of Eastern Poland on 17 September, in accordance with a secret protocol of the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, rendered the Polish plan of defence obsolete. Facing a second front, the Polish government concluded the defence of the Romanian Bridgehead was no longer feasible and ordered an emergency evacuation of all troops to neutral Romania. On 6 October, following the Polish defeat at the Battle of Kock, German and Soviet forces gained full control over Poland. The success of the invasion marked the end of the Second Polish Republic, though Poland never formally surrendered.

On 8 October, after an initial period of military administration, Germany directly annexed western Poland and the former Free City of Danzig and placed the remaining block of territory under the administration of the newly established General Government. The Soviet Union incorporated its newly acquired areas into its constituent Belarusian and Ukrainian republics, and immediately started a campaign of sovietization. In the aftermath of the invasion, a collective of underground resistance organizations formed the Polish Underground State within the territory of the former Polish state. Many of the military exiles that managed to escape Poland subsequently joined the Polish Armed Forces in the West, an armed force loyal to the Polish government in exile.

SMJK Sam Tet is founded by Father Fourgs from the St. Michael Church, Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia.

Ahmet Zogu declares Albania to be a monarchy and proclaims himself king.

The Great Kantō earthquake devastates Tokyo and Yokohama, killing about 105,000 people.

The Fountain of Time opens as a tribute to the 100 years of peace between the United States and Great Britain following the Treaty of Ghent.

St. Petersburg, Russia, changes its name to Petrograd.
The last passenger pigeon, a female named Martha, dies in captivity in the Cincinnati Zoo.

The armored cruiser Georgios Averof is commissioned into the Greek Navy. It now serves as a museum ship.

The International Federation of Intellectual Property Attorneys is established.

Alberta and Saskatchewan join the Canadian confederation.

A Trip to the Moon, considered one of the first science fiction films, is released in France.

The Tremont Street Subway in Boston opens, becoming the first underground rapid transit system in North America.

Great Hinckley Fire: A forest fire in Hinckley, Minnesota, kills more than 400 people.

The army of Mohammad Ayub Khan is routed by the British at the Battle of Kandahar, ending the Second Anglo-Afghan War

Emma Nutt becomes the world's first female telephone operator when she is recruited by Alexander Graham Bell to the Boston Telephone Dispatch Company.

A murder conviction effectively forces the violent Irish anti-owner coal miners, the "Molly Maguires", to disband.

Cetshwayo ascends to the throne as king of the Zulu nation following the death of his father Mpande.

Franco-Prussian War: the Battle of Sedan is fought, resulting in a decisive Prussian victory.

American Civil War: the Confederate Army General John Bell Hood orders the evacuation of Atlanta, ending a four-month siege by General William Tecumseh Sherman.

American Civil War: Battle of Chantilly - Confederate Army troops defeat a group of retreating Union Army troops in Chantilly, Virginia.

A solar superstorm affects electrical telegraph service.

Narcissa Whitman, one of the first English-speaking white women to settle west of the Rocky Mountains, arrives at Walla Walla, Washington.

The high honor of Order of St. Gregory the Great is established by Pope Gregory XVI of the Vatican State to recognize high support for the Vatican or for the Pope, by a man or a woman, and not necessarily a Roman Catholic.

Former US Vice President Aaron Burr is acquitted of treason.

Juno, one of the four largest asteroids in the Main Belt, is discovered by the German astronomer Karl Ludwig Harding.

Massachusetts Bay colonists rise up in the bloodless Powder Alarm.

The Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa is founded in San Luis Obispo, California.

Catherine II of Russia endorses Ivan Betskoy's plans for a Foundling Home in Moscow

The Liberty Bell arrives in Philadelphia.

King Louis XIV of France dies after a reign of 72 years-the longest of any major European monarch.

Battle of Tippermuir: James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose defeats the Earl of Wemyss's Covenanters, reviving the Royalist cause.

Adi Granth, now known as Guru Granth Sahib, the holy scripture of Sikhs, was first installed at Harmandir Sahib.

Lady Anne Boleyn is made Marquess of Pembroke by her fiancé, King Henry VIII of England.

The Spanish fort of Sancti Spiritu, the first one built in modern Argentina, is destroyed by natives.

Tumu Crisis - Mongols capture the Emperor of China.

Tvrtko I writes ''in castro nostro Vizoka vocatum'' from old town Visoki.

King Stephen V of Hungary writes his walk to the antiquum castellum near Miholjanec, where the Sword of Attila was recently discovered.

Siege of Constantinople: The Muslim armada with 1,800 ships, is defeated by the Byzantine navy through the use of Greek fire.

Possible start of first Byzantine indiction cycle.