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Military History Anniversaries 1 thru 30 Apr
Significant events in U.S. Military History for the next 30 days are:
Apr 01 1745: French & Indian War: A fleet consisting of 19 transport ships escorted by 13
armed merchant vessels is carrying a total of 4,220 American colonial militiamen toward Cape
Breton Island, Nova Scotia. The goal is the capture of Louisbourg, the largest fort in North
America. It was built and garrisoned by the French to protect the entrance to the St. Lawrence
River and French Canada.
Apr 01 1865 – Civil War: Battle of Five Forks – In Siege of Petersburg, Confederate General
Robert E. Lee begins his final offensive. Casualties and losses: US 830 - CSA 2,950
Apr 01 1893 – The rank of Chief Petty Officer in the United States Navy is established.
Apr 01 1942 – WW2: Rationing - Anyone wishing to purchase a new toothpaste tube, then made
from metal, had to turn in an empty one.
Apr 01 1945 – WW2: Operation Iceberg – United States troops land on Okinawa in the last
campaign of the war.
Apr 01 1948 – Cold War: Berlin Airlift – Military forces, under direction of the Soviet–controlled
government in East Germany, set–up a land blockade of West Berlin.
Berliners watch a C-54 Skymaster land at Tempelhof Airport, 1948
Apr 01 1954 – President Dwight D. Eisenhower authorizes the creation of the United States Air
Force Academy in Colorado.
Apr 02 1865 – Civil War: The 9 month Siege of Petersburg is broken – Union troops capture the
trenches around Petersburg, Virginia, forcing Confederate General Robert E. Lee to retreat.
Casualties and losses: US 42,000 - CSA 28,000
Apr 02 1865 – Civil War: Confederate President Jefferson Davis and most of his Cabinet flee the
Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia.
Apr 02 1917 – WWI: U.S. President Woodrow Wilson asks the U.S. Congress for a declaration of
war on Germany.
Apr 02 1972 – Vietnam: The Easter Offensive begins – North Vietnamese soldiers of the 304th
Division take the northern half of Quang Tri Province.
Apr 03 1865 – Civil War: Union forces occupy the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia.
Apr 03 1942 – WW2: The Japanese begin their all–out assault on the U.S. and Filipino troops at
Apr 03 1943 – WW2: USS Pickerel (SS–177) sunk by Japanese minelayer Shirakami and
auxiliary subchaser Bunzan Maru off northern Honshu, Japan. 74 killed
Apr 03 1945 – WW2: US 1st Army conquers Hofgeismar, Germany
Apr 03 1946 – Post WW2: Japanese Lt. General Masaharu Homma is executed in the Philippines
for leading the Bataan Death March. He maintained that he had no knowledge of atrocities until
after they had occurred.
Apr 04 1917 – WWI: The U.S. Senate votes 90–6 to enter World War I on the Allied side.
Apr 04 1918 – WWI: The Battle of the Somme ends.
Apr 04 1945 – WW2: American troops liberate Ohrdruf forced labor camp in Germany. Also
Kassel is captured after a 4 day struggle with the German Army.
Apr 04 1975 – Vietnam: Operation Baby Lift – A United States Air Force C–5A Galaxy crashes
near Saigon, South Vietnam shortly after takeoff, transporting orphans – 172 die.
Apr 05 1862 – Civil War: The Battle of Yorktown begins.
Apr 05 1943 – WW2: American bomber aircraft accidentally cause more than 900 civilian deaths,
including 209 children, and 1300 wounded among the civilian population of the Belgian town of
Mortsel. The target is the Erla factory one kilometer from the residential area hit.
Apr 05 1951 – Cold War: Ethel and Julius Rosenberg are sentenced to death for performing
espionage for the Soviet Union.
Apr 05 1968 – Vietnam: Operation Pegasus was launched by the 1st Air Cavalry Division to
relieve the marines at Khe Sanh.
Apr 06 1862 – Civil War: The 2 day Battle of Shiloh begins – in Tennessee, forces under Union
General Ulysses S. Grant meet Confederate troops led by General Albert Sidney Johnston.
Casualties and losses: US 13,047 - CSA 10,699.
Apr 06 1865 – Civil War: The Battle of Sayler's Creek – Confederate General Robert E. Lee's
Army of Northern Virginia fights its last major battle while in retreat from Richmond, Virginia.
Casualties and losses: US 1,148 - CSA 7,700.
Apr 06 1866 – Post Civil War: The Grand Army of the Republic, an American patriotic
organization composed of Union veterans of the American Civil War, is founded. It lasts until
GAR Parade during the 1914 Encampment in Detroit, Michigan
Apr 06 1917 – WWI: The United States declares war on Germany.
Apr 06 1945 – WW2: the Battle of Slater's Knoll on Bougainville comes to an end. Casualties
and losses: AUS 189 - JP 1,624.
Apr 06 1972 – Vietnam: Easter Offensive – American forces begin sustained air strikes and naval
Apr 07 1712 – Tuscarora War: Col. John Barnwell, commanding a combined white militia and
friendly Indian force numbering about 300 men, again besieges this main encampment of the
hostile Tuscarora Indians. The Tuscarora had launched a surprise attack in September 1711,
killing about 130 colonists, prompting North Carolina to ask Virginia and South Carolina for
help. Barnwell's army was composed mostly of South Carolina militia. He had besieged the
hostiles’ fort in March, but agreed to a truce after the Indians began torturing their captives within
earshot of the militia. When the Tuscarora failed to honor part of their agreement, Barnwell
maintained the siege for 10 days, finally forcing the Indians to surrender. All captives were freed
and other conditions were met bringing the Tuscarora War to a close.
Apr 07 1862 – Civil War: Battle of Shiloh ends – the Union Army under General Ulysses S.
Grant defeats the Confederates near Shiloh, Tennessee.
Apr 07 1943 – WW2: Holocaust: In Terebovlia, Ukraine, Germans order 1,100 Jews to undress to
their underwear and march through the city of Terebovlia to the nearby village of Plebanivka.
There they are shot dead
Apr 07 1945 – WW2: The Japanese battleship Yamato, the largest battleship ever constructed, is
sunk 200 miles north of Okinawa while en–route to a suicide mission in Operation Ten–Go.
Apr 07 2003 – Gulf War: U.S. troops capture Baghdad; Saddam Hussein's regime falls two days
Apr 08 1864 - Civil War: Battle of Mansfield - Union forces are thwarted by the Confederate
army at Mansfield, Louisiana. Casualties and losses: US 2,117 - CSA 1,000.
Apr 08 1942 – WW2: The Japanese take Bataan in the Philippines
Apr 09 1782 – Revolutionary War: 4 day Battle of the Saintes begins. Casualties and losses: Brit
1,059 - FR 8,000 Est.
Apr 09 1865 – Civil War: Robert E. Lee surrenders the Army of Northern Virginia (26,765
troops) to Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Courthouse, Virginia, effectively ending the war.
Apr 09 1916 – WWI: The Battle of Verdun – German forces launch their third offensive of the
Apr 09 1942 – WW2: The Battle of Bataan/Bataan Death March – United States forces surrender
on the Bataan Peninsula
Apr 09 1945 – WW2: USS Snook (SS–279) missing. Most likely sunk by a combination of
Japanese naval aircraft in the Nansei Soto. 84 killed.
Apr 09 1981 – The U.S. Navy nuclear submarine USS George Washington (SSBN–598)
accidentally collides with the Nissho Maru, a Japanese cargo ship, sinking it.
Apr 09 2003 – Iraq Invasion: Baghdad falls to American forces; Saddam Hussein statue topples
as Iraqis turn on symbols of their former leader, pulling down the statue and tearing it to pieces.
Apr 10 1942 – WW2: Bataan Peninsula, Luzon, Philippines – After more than three months of
determined resistance, American and Filipino forces are compelled by hunger, disease and lack of
supplies to surrender to the Japanese army. Among these units are the survivors of two Guard
tank battalions, the 192nd from Illinois, Kentucky, Ohio and Wisconsin, and the 194th from
Minnesota and Missouri, as well as the 200th Coast Artillery (Anti–Aircraft) from New Mexico.
These men were subjected to the Bataan Death March with the survivors spending the next three
years in captivity.
Apr 10 1963 – USS Thresher (SSN–593) sank after a possible piping failure during deep
submergence tests off New England coast. 129 died
Apr 10 1972 – Vietnam: For the first time since NOV 67, American B–52 bombers reportedly
begin bombing North Vietnam.
Apr 11 1945 – WW2: American forces liberate the Buchenwald concentration camp in Germany.
German civilians are forced by American troops to bear witness to Nazi atrocities at Buchenwald
concentration camp, mere miles from their own homes, April 1945.
Apr 11 1951 – Korea: President Harry Truman relieves General of the Army Douglas MacArthur
of overall command in Korea.
Apr 12 1861 – Civil War: The war begins with Confederate forces firing on Fort Sumter, in the
harbor of Charleston, South Carolina.
Apr 12 1862 – Civil War: The Andrews Raid (the Great Locomotive Chase) occurred, starting
from Big Shanty, Georgia (now Kennesaw). Some of Andrews' raiders were the first to be
awarded the Medal of Honor by the US Congress for their actions
Apr 12 1864 – Civil War: Battle (Massacre) of Fort Pillow: Confederate forces kill the majority
of the African American soldiers and many of the white soldiers that surrendered at Fort Pillow,
Tennessee. Casualties and losses: US 574 - CSA 100.
1885 color poster of the "Fort Pillow Massacre".
Apr 12 1865 – Civil War: Mobile, Alabama, falls to the Union Army.
Apr 13 1776 – Revolutionary War: American forces are surprised in the Battle of Bound Brook,
New Jersey. During the battle, most of the 500–man garrison escaped. Casualties and losses: US
40 to 120 - GB 7.
Apr 13 1861 – Civil War: Fort Sumter surrenders to Confederate forces. Casualties and losses:
US 2 - CSA 0
Apr 13 1972 – Vietnam: The Battle of An Loc begins
Apr 14 1918 – WWI: Douglas Campbell is 1st US ace pilot (shooting down 5th German plane)
Apr 14 1945 – WW2: US 7th Army & allies forces captured Nuremberg & Stuttgart in Germany
Apr 15 1900 – Philippine-American War: Filipino guerrillas launch a surprise attack on U.S.
infantry and begin a four-day siege of Catubig, Philippines.
Apr 15 1952 – The maiden flight of the B-52 Stratofortress
Apr 16 1862 – Civil War: The one hour Battle at Lee's Mills (part of the 29 day Seige of
Yorktown) in Virginia. Casualties and losses: US 165 - CSA 75.
Apr 16 1863 – Civil War: Union Admiral David Dixon Porter leads 12 ships past the heavy
barrage of Confederate artillery at Vicksburg, Mississippi. He lost only one ship, and the
operation speeded General Ulysses S. Grant's movement against Vicksburg.
Apr 16 1945 – WW2: American troops enter Nuremberg Germany
Apr 16 1945 – The United States Army liberates Nazi Sonderlager (high security) prisoner-ofwar camp Oflag IV-C (better known as Colditz).
Apr 16 1947 – Cold War: Bernard Baruch, an American financier and presidential advisor,
delivered a speech saying we are today in the midst of a cold war using the term for the first to
describe the relationship between the United States and the Soviet Union. Although no official
dates are set it is generally acknowledged it did not end until 1991.
Apr 16 1953 – Korean War: Battle of Pork Chop Hill (Hill 255) began .
Apr 17 1864 – Civil War: The 4 day Battle of Plymouth begins. Confederate forces attack
Plymouth, North Carolina resulting in a Confederate victory. Casualties and losses: US 2,000 CSA 800.
Apr 17 1961 – Bay of Pigs Invasion: A group of CIA financed and trained Cuban refugees lands
at the Bay of Pigs in Cuba with the aim of ousting Fidel Castro. Casualties and losses: Cuba
4,176 - Cuban Exiles/US 1,320.
Apr 18 1775 – American revolutionaries Paul Revere, William Dawes and Samuel Prescott ride
though the towns of Massachusetts warning that "the British are coming."
Paul Revere, 1903
William Dawes
Samuel Prescott
Apr 18 1848 – Mexican–American War: American victory at the battle of Cerro Gordo opens the
way for invasion of Mexico.
Apr 18 1942 – WW2: James H. Doolittle bombs Tokyo and other Japanese cities.
Apr 18 1943 – WW2: The mastermind of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor (Admiral Isoroku
Yamamoto) is shot down by American P–38 fighters while traveling in a bomber.
Apr 18 1944 – WW2: USS Gudgeon (SS–211) missing. Most likely sunk by Japanese naval
aircraft (901st Kokutai) southwest of Iwo Jima. 79 killed.
Apr 18 1988 – Iran–Iraq War: The United States launches Operation Praying Mantis against
Iranian naval forces in the largest naval battle since World War II.
Apr 19 1775 – American Revolution: The war begins with an American victory in Concord
during the battles of Lexington and Concord. Casualties and losses: Americans 93 - GB 300.
Apr 19 1861 – Civil War: Baltimore riot of 1861 – a pro–Secession mob in Baltimore, Maryland,
attacks United States Army troops marching through the city.
Apr 19 1951 – Korean War: General Douglas MacArthur retires from the military.
Apr 19 1989 – A gun turret explodes on the USS Iowa, killing 47 sailors.
USS Iowa's Turret Two explodes
Apr 20 1775 – Revolutionary War: the Siege of Boston begins, following the battles at Lexington
and Concord.
Apr 20 1861 – Civil War: Robert E. Lee resigns his commission in the United States Army in
order to command the forces of the state of Virginia.
Apr 20 1945 – WW2: US troops capture Leipzig, Germany, only to later cede the city to the
Soviet Union.
Apr 20 1945 – WW2: Fuehrerbunker: Adolf Hitler makes his last trip to the surface to award Iron
Crosses to boy soldiers of the Hitler Youth.
Apr 21 1836 – Texas Revolution: General Sam Houston defeats Santa Anna at the Battle of San
Jacinto. Texas wins independence from Mexico
Apr 21 1918 – WWI: German fighter ace Manfred von Richthofen, known as "The Red Baron",
is shot down and killed over Vaux sur Somme in France.
Richthofen wearing the Blue Max, Prussia’s highest military order
Apr 21 1942 – World War II: The most famous (and first international) Aggie Muster is held on
the Philippine island of Corregidor, by Brigadier General George F. Moore (with 25 fellow Texas
A&M graduates who are under his command), while 1.8 million pounds of shells pounded the
island over a 5 hour attack.
Apr 22 1863 –- Civil War: Grierson's 15 day Raid begins - troops under Union Army Colonel
Benjamin Grierson attack central Mississippi.
Apr 22 1898 – Spanish–American War: The United States Navy begins a blockade of Cuban
ports and the USS Nashville captures a Spanish merchant ship.
Apr 22 1915 – WWI: The use of poison gas in World War I escalates when chlorine gas is
released as a chemical weapon in the Second Battle of Ypres.
Apr 22 1943 – WW2: USS Grenadier (SS–210) scuttled after Japanese seaplane attacks (936
Kokutai) damaged the boat the previous day, off Penang, Malaysia. 76 POWs, 4 later died.
Apr 22 1945 – WW2: Fuehrerbunker – After learning that Soviet forces have taken Eberswalde
without a fight, Adolf Hitler admits defeat in his underground bunker and states that suicide is his
only recourse.
Apr 22 1951 – Ticker–tape parade for General MacArthur in NYC.
Apr 22 2008 – The United States Air Force retires the remaining F-117 Nighthawk aircraft in
Apr 23 1899 – Quingua, Luzon, Philippine Islands — An American force consisting of four
battalions of infantry from Nebraska and Iowa plus a battery of guns from the Utah Light
Artillery, is fiercely engaged by Filipino insurgents about 20 miles north of the capital of Manila.
Apr 24 1805 – U.S. Marines attack and capture the town of Derna in Tripoli from the Barbary
Apr 24 1918 – WWI: First tank–to–tank combat, at Villers–Bretonneux, France, when three
British Mark IVs met three German A7Vs.
Apr 24 1944 – WW2: 1st Boeing B–29 arrives in China "over the Hump"
Apr 24 1948 – Cold War: The Berlin airlift begins to relieve surrounded city. Ends 12 May 1949.
Fatalities: 40 Britons and 31 Americans
Berliners watch a C-54 skymaster land at Tempelhof Airport, 1948
Apr 24 1967 – Vietnam: American General William Westmoreland says that the enemy had
gained support in the U.S. States that gives him hope that he can win politically that which he
cannot win militarily.
Apr 24 1980 – A rescue attempt of the U.S. hostages held in Iran fails when a plane collides with
a helicopter in the Iranian desert. Eight U.S. servicemen die.
Apr 25 1846 – Mexican–American War: Thornton Affair – Open conflict begins over the
disputed border of Texas, triggering the Mexican–American War.
Apr 25 1862 – Civil War: Forces under Union Admiral David Farragut demand the surrender of
the Confederate city of New Orleans, Louisiana.
Apr 25 1864 – Civil War: The Battle of Marks' Mills. Casualties and losses: US 1,500 - CSA 293.
Result: Confederate victory.
Apr 25 1945 – WW2: Elbe Day – United States and Soviet troops meet in Torgau along the River
Elbe, cutting the Wehrmacht of Nazi Germany in two, a milestone in the approaching end of
World War II in Europe.
Apr 25 1951 - Korean War: Assaulting Chinese forces are forced to withdraw after heavy fighting
with UN forces, primarily made up of Australian and Canadian troops, at the Battle of Kapyong.
Casualties and losses: UN 146 - CH/NK ~1,000.
Apr 25 1960 – The U.S. Navy submarine USS Triton completes the first submerged
circumnavigation of the globe.
Apr 25 1972 - Vietnam War: Nguyen Hue Offensive - The North Vietnamese 320th Division
forces 5,000 South Vietnamese troops to retreat and traps about 2,500 others northwest of
Apr 25 1975 – Vietnam: As North Vietnamese forces close in on the South Vietnamese capital
Saigon, the Australian Embassy is closed and evacuated, almost ten years to the day since the first
Australian troop commitment to South Vietnam.
Apr 26 1865 – Civil War: Confederate General Joseph E. Johnston surrenders his army to
General William Tecumseh Sherman at the Bennett Place near Durham, North Carolina. Also the
date of Confederate Memorial Day for most states.
Apr 26 1865 – Union cavalry troopers corner and shoot dead John Wilkes Booth, assassin of
President Lincoln, in Virginia.
Apr 26 1945 – World War II: Filipino troops of the 66th Infantry Regiment, Philippine
Commonwealth Army, USAFIP–NL and the American troops of the 33rd and 37th Infantry
Division, United States Army were liberated in Baguio City. All had fought against the Japanese
forces under General Tomoyuki Yamashita.
Apr 26 1945 – WW2: Battle of Bautzen – last successful German tank–offensive of the war and
last noteworthy victory of the Wehrmacht.
Apr 27 1777 – American Revolution: The Battle of Ridgefield: A British invasion force engages
and defeats Continental Army regulars and militia irregulars at Ridgefield, Connecticut.
Casualties and losses: US 100 - GB 194. Result: Tactical British victory; Strategic American
Apr 27 1805 – First Barbary War: United States Marines and Berbers attack the Tripolitan city of
Apr 27 1813 – War of 1812: United States troops capture the capital of Upper Canada York
(present day Toronto, Canada).
Apr 27 1865 – The steamboat SS Sultana, carrying 2,400 passengers, explodes and sinks in the
Mississippi River, killing 1,700, most of whom are Union survivors of the Andersonville and
Cahaba Prisons.
Apr 27 1975 – Vietnam: Saigon is encircled by North Vietnamese troops.
Apr 28 1942 – As result of a Gallup Poll the war is titled WW2
Apr 28 1965 – Latin America Interventions: The U.S. Army and Marines invade the Dominican
Apr 28 1965 – U.S. Marines invade Dominican Republic, stay until October 1966
Apr 28 1970 – Vietnam: U.S. President Richard M. Nixon formally authorizes American combat
troops to fight communist sanctuaries in Cambodia.
Apr 29 1781 - American Revolution: British and French ships clash in the Battle of Fort Royal
off the coast of Martinique. Result: French tactical victory.
Apr 29 1862 – Civil War: New Orleans, Louisiana falls to Union forces under Admiral David
Apr 29 1945 – WW2: The German army in Italy unconditionally surrenders to the Allies.
Apr 29 1945 – WW2 - Fuehrerbunker: Adolf Hitler marries his longtime partner Eva Braun in a
Berlin bunker and designates Admiral Karl Dönitz as his successor. Both Hitler and Braun
commit suicide the following day.
Apr 29 1945 – The Dachau concentration camp is liberated by United States troops.
Apr 29 1946 – The International Military Tribunal for the Far East convenes and indicts former
Prime Minister of Japan Hideki Tojo and 28 former Japanese leaders for war crimes.
Apr 29 1970 – Vietnam: United States and South Vietnamese forces invade Cambodia to hunt
Viet Cong.
29 Apr 1975 – Vietnam: Operation Frequent Wind: The U.S. begins to evacuate U.S. citizens
from Saigon prior to an expected North Vietnamese takeover. U.S. involvement in the war comes
to an end.
01 May 1945 - WW2: Start of Operation Chowhound to help feed civilians in the Netherlands via
food airdrops who were in danger of starvation in the Dutch famine
Apr 29 1990 – Cold War: Wrecking cranes began tearing down Berlin Wall at Brandenburg Gate
Apr 30 1943 – WW2: Operation Mincemeat – The submarine HMS Seraph surfaces in the
Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Spain to deposit a dead man planted with false invasion plans
and dressed as a British military intelligence officer.
Apr 30 1945 – WW2: Adolf Hitler commits suicide in his bunker. Karl Donitz becomes his
Apr 30 1972 – Vietnam: The North Vietnamese launch an invasion of the South.
Apr 30 1975 – Vietnam: Fall of Saigon. Communist forces gain control of Saigon. The Vietnam
War formally ends with the unconditional surrender of South Vietnamese president Duong Van
Apr 30 2004 – U.S. media release graphic photos of American soldiers abusing and sexually
humiliating Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison.
[Source: Various Mar 2014 ++]