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1913

Jan 23  In Turkey, following military defeats, young military men forcibly take control of the government, overthrowing the Sultan. These are men influenced by reformers who had studied in France. Their leader, Ismail Enver, a military officer, belong to the Committee of Union and Progress.

Jan 30  The British House of Lords rejects a bill designed to give a measure of self-government to much of Ireland.

Feb 3  The 16th Amendment to the United States Constitution is ratified, authorizing Congress the "power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several states, and without regard to any census or enumeration."

Feb 19  Encouraged by President Taft's ambassador to Mexico, General Victoriano Huerta overthrows President Madero and proclaims himself Provisional President of Mexico. Huerta puts Madero under guard at the national palace.

Feb 22  Huerta has Madero murdered. The Huerta administration claims that Madero was ambushed by a group not under its orders while Madero was being transferred to a prison.

Mar 4  Woodrow Wilson succeeds William Howard Taft as President of the United States.

Mar 11  Austria-Hungary and Russia agree to demobilizations that end their war crisis. Austro-Hungarian armies in the northeastern province of Galicia are to demobilize and Russia is to allow conscripts to return home, lowering Russia's military strength to normal peacetime levels. It signals to Serbia that Russia is not going to back Serbian ambitions to gain access to the Adriatic Sea or Montenegro's ambition to take the city of Scutari (Shkodër). The Habsburg regime in Austria is left with the impression that Russia will respond to intimidation. Some Russians believe that the tsar's government has sold out the Serbs. Meanwhile, Serbia has been willing to give up gains to the Adriatic coast. It doesn't want war with Austria-Hungary.

Mar 13  Pancho Villa, who has supported the presidency of Madero and has been in self-imposed exile in El Paso, Texas, returns to Mexico to rebuild his army and fight Huerta.

Mar 22  Sung Chiao-jen, a founder of the Guomindang political party and an outspoken critic of President Yuan Shikai's policies, is assassinated. A military advisor to the president is implicated. Newspapers supporting the Guomindang begin attacking President Yuan. With money from foreign banks, Yuan buys the loyalty of provincial governors and their armies.

Mar 26  In Mexico the governor of Coahuila, Venustiano Carranza, a wealthy, educated and dour liberal from a cattle-raising family, begins a well-organized rebellion against Huerta's government.

Mar 26  Since mid-November, Bulgarian forces have been surrounding the Ottoman Empire's city of Adrianople, in Thrace. Today they take the city.

Apr 6  The World's Fair opens in Ghent, Belgium, to run to October. Also in Belgium, in this Age of Empire, at the Palais du Congo, an open book commemorates Belgium's imperialism. It reads: "Does she [Belgium] not owe it to herself, to her honor, to continue the work of civilisation begun by the valiant colonizers, sleeping in the African bush, far from the Mother Country?" (from 1913, by Charles Emmerson, p 4)

Apr 8  The 17th Amendment to the US Constitution is passed, dictating the elections of senators in each state by popular vote. Senators had been chosen by their state legislators.

May 5  The US has put a limit on Japanese immigration, and Japanese in the United States are excluded from acquiring citizenship. Two days ago California passed a law restricting Japanese immigrants from owning land. Today California's governor, Hiram Johnson says "We have prevented the Japanese from driving the root of their civilization deep into Californian soil."

May 14  The Japanese feel they have been slapped in the face by the California law. They are angry over what they see as Americans believing that whites and the US are superior to them. Today, US Rear Admiral Bradley Fiske warns that a war with Japan is "not only possible, but even probable."

May 30  The Treaty of London is signed at an international conference of Europe's ambassadors. It focuses on borders and settles what will be called the First Balkan War.

Jun 4  Emily Davison, a British suffragette, runs in front of the King's horse, Anmer, at the Epsom Derby. She is trampled and dies 4 days later in hospital, never having regained consciousness.

Jun 8  In Berlin a stadium constructed for the 1916 Summer Olympics is dedicated with the release of 10,000 pigeons in front of an audience of 60,000 people. These Olympics will not be held.

Jun 8  In the New York Times, an article about Germany's emperor, Wilhelm II, appears. It's written by the founder of the German peace movement, Alfred Fried. He writes: His glory [King Wilhelm] as a man of peace, great enough now, will become greater, and his wish to figure in history as a hero of peace will be fulfilled."

Jun 11-15  In the Philippine Islands, the Battle of Bud Bagsak is won in four days by US and Philippine troops commanded by General John J. "Black Jack" Pershing. Their enemy is 500 Moro rebels, Muslims armed mostly with kampilan swords.

Jun 19  In South Africa, parliament passes a law forbidding blacks from owning or buying land from whites.

Jun 29  The Second Balkan War erupts when Bulgaria, dissatisfied with its share of the spoils of the First Balkan War, attacks its former allies Serbia and Greece. Bulgaria now has a defense treaty with Austria. Montenegro is siding with Serbia. Romania has warned Bulgaria that it will not remain neutral.

Jul 10  Romania declares war on Bulgaria.

Jul 12  The Ottoman Empire declares war on Bulgaria and advances into Thrace.

Jul 22  Bulgaria ends its alignment toward Russia and allies with Austria and German (the Central Powers).

Aug 10  Bulgaria has been defeated militarily by the combined forces of Serbia, Greece and Romania. Delegates from Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia, Montenegro and Greece sign the Treaty of Bucharest, which ends the Second Balkan War. Romania is given a southern portion of the Dobruja region on the Black Sea, between it and Bulgaria. Bulgaria is granted a small portion of Macedonia and a strip of Aegean coastline including the port of Dedeagach (Alexandroúpolis). Serbia gains control over what had been northern and central Macedonia. Greece acquires what had been southern Macedonia.

Sep 16  Archduke Franz Ferdinand has plans to inspect Habsburg troops in Bosnia in 1914.

Sep 29  The Treaty of Constantinople (Istanbul) ends hostilities between the Ottoman Empire and Bulgaria.

Oct 1  Pancho Villa's troops take Torreón in north-central Mexico (about 600 kilometers south of the US border) after a 3-day battle, following a retreat by Huerta's force. President Wilson announces that if Huerta doesn't resign from power the US will force him out of office.

Oct 3  President Wilson signs the Revenue Act of 1913. A federal income tax is wanted to compensate for revenue lost with the reduction of tariff duties.

Nov 6  Mohandas Gandhi is arrested while leading a march of Indian miners in South Africa.

Dec 1  The Ford Motor Company introduces the first moving assembly line, reducing chassis assembly time from 12½ hours in October to 2 hours, 40 minutes.

Dec 3  A Serbian journal in Chicago editorializes on Archduke Ferdinand's proposed visit to Sarajevo in 1914: "Take holy vengeance! Death to the Habsburg dynasty!" Serb youths in Bosnia have been oppressed by Austrian authorities responding to Serb nationalism. Teenage boys in Sarajevo jumped at the opportunity to join a conspiracy to assassinate the Archduke. Their leader is a nineteen year-old: Gavrilo Princip.

Dec 9  Germany's Kaiser Wilhelm sends one of his generals, Liman von Sanders, to Turkey to advance that country militarily. This will disturb Russia's military leaders.

Dec 26  In London, The Daily Chronicle editorializes, stating: "It requires no gift of prophecy to foretell that this mad competition in military expenditure will end in disaster." (Charles Emmerson, 1913, p 448.)

Dec 31  The year 1913 ends with leading strategists in Austria-Hungary still favoring war against Serbia, and against Russia if Russia intervenes. Austria-Hungary's military leaders fear Russia's growing military capability, and they favor getting the war with Serbia over with before Russia strengthened its military forces.

Dec 31  In London, The Daily Graphic welcomes Europe having weathered wars in the Balkans. The paper expresses concern about Mexico and the Middle East but looks back on the year 1913 as having "spared us Armageddon."

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