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1927

Jan 7  In Mexico the Cristero War begins. Catholics who call themselves Cristeros take up arms against anti-clerical provisions of Mexico's 1917 Constitution. Trains will be blown up. Public schools will be attacked and burned and teachers killed. The government will retaliate.

Jan 7  The first transatlantic telephone call is made, from New York City to London, via radio waves.

Jan 19  Advancing Guomindang forces under the influence of Leftists have taken over the British concession in the cities of Hankow and Kiukiang. Britain sends troops to Shanghai to prevent the same from happening there and to save lives and property. In February the British will conclude an agreement with the Guomindang.

Jan 30  In Schattendorf Austria, 100 miles south of Vienna, right-wing veterans shoot and kill two Social Democrats, one an eight-year old boy, on their way to the train station after a demonstration. Outrage erupts among the Social Democrats.

Feb 19  A general strike in Shanghai protests the presence of British troops.

Mar 5  Some 1,000 US Marines arrive in Shanghai to "protect American property."

Mar 7  The US Supreme Court rules as unconstitutional a Texas law that bans Negroes from voting.

Mar 9  Italy's fascist government decides to revoke self-government in Libya.

Mar 10  In Bavaria, the ban against National Socialists (Nazis) is lifted. Adolf Hitler is now allowed to speak in public. In his first speech, Hitler attacks agreements that Germany made at Locarno.

Mar 12  Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek's army pushes into the Chinese section of Shanghai. They won't molest foreigners or their property and in a couple of days the foreigners will relax.

Mar 19  Bloody street fighting between Nazis and Communists takes place in Berlin.

Apr 12  The Guomindang's movement northward from Canton has been accompanied by a wave of strikes that bring production in China to a standstill, and peasant unrest has been encouraged, raising fears among landowners across China. Warlords have been going over to the side of the Guomindang's leader, Chiang Kai-shek. Wealthy Chinese businessmen offer moderates within the Guomindang their support if they rid the Guomindang of its leftists. Chiang Kai-shek has developed a dislike for Communists. His forces take control of Shanghai and turn against the Guomindang's Communists and against labor unions. In Shanghai, Chiang Kai-shek rounds up Communists and other Leftists. Hundreds of union supporters are murdered.

Apr 14  In Gothenburg Sweden, the first Volvo car rolls off the production line.

Apr 19  In China, Communists declare war on Chiang Kai-shek.

Apr 21  Japan's prosperity has been in decline. Factories have been closing and unemployment rising. Falling silk and rice prices have hurt Japanese farmers, and starvation became a real threat to millions of people in Japan's rural areas. A banking crisis has hit Japan – the Showa Financial Crisis. A run on banks has caused thirty-seven smaller banks to fold. A new prime minister, Tanaka Giichi, declares a three-week bank holiday. Large financial branches of the five great zaibatsu houses will survive and dominate Japanese finances until the end of World War II.

Apr 27  Actress Mae West is released after ten days in jail. She and the entire cast and producers of her Broadway play "Sex" had been imprisoned after 375 performances of their comedy-drama.

May 1  Hitler holds his first Nazi meeting in Berlin. The Jazz Age has spread to Germany. Hitler is a provincial who dislikes Berlin and the new hedonism.

May 8  French pilots Charles Nungesser and Francois Coli take off from Paris in their airplane named the White Bird in an attempt to cross the Atlantic. The Pilots and plane will vanish.

May 20  The Treaty of Jeddah is signed between King Ibn Saud and Britain. It recognizes the sovereignty of Saud in the territories known as Hejaz and Nejd.

May 16  The US Supreme Court rules that illegal income can be taxed. With this the US government will prosecute the Chicago area gangster Al Capone for tax evasion. Capone controls gambling, prostitution, distilleries and has a large share in a cleaning and dyeing plant chain. His income is estimated at $105 million per year.

May 18  In Bath Township, Michigan, on May 18, Andrew Kehoe, age 55, kills his wife, blows up an elementary school, killing 38, two teachers and four other adults, and then kills himself. Kehoe is described as a sore loser following an election for township clerk. He is described as having been intelligent, easily angered and impatient with people who disagreed with him, and fastidious about keeping himself clean and maintaining a neat appearance.

May 21  Joy erupts in response to the first non-stop solo transatlantic flight – from the US to France – by Charles Lindbergh.

May 22   A conference between the Liberals and Conservatives, brokered by the US, has produced a settlement. Within a week the Liberals will turn in 11,600 rifles, 303 machine guns and more that 5 million rounds of ammunition. But not everyone on the Liberal side goes along with the settlement and the occupation of their country by the US Marines.

May 24  The Mississippi has been flooding. It kills some 500 people and displaces thousands.

May 27  An earthquake in China's Qinghai (Xining) Province kills a reported 200,000 people.

Jun 1  André Gide has ended his travels through central Africa, including French Equatorial Africa. He publishes his journal, Travels in the Congo. It creates indignation in France regarding the mistreatment of blacks forced to work on the construction of 300 miles of railroad from Brazzaville to Pointe Noire – a project that over a ten-year period killed nearly ten thousand.

Jul 15  In Vienna, two are acquitted of killing two Social Democrats on January 30. Demonstrators chase away a small group of policemen. Police on horseback with their sabres drawn charge the demonstrators. The angry crowd storms the Palace of Justice and set fire to files, with flames leaping from building windows. Eighty-nine people are killed, five of them policemen. Six hundred are seriously wounded. It is a prelude to a civil war in 1934.

Jul 16  Augusto Sandino begins a war against the US occupation of Nicaragua. It starts with something like 500 of his men attacking a unit of 41 US Marines and a Nicaraguan garrison at Ocotal – a battle lasting no more than 24 hours. The Marines respond with airpower: seven planes. Sandino is said to have lost from 40 to 80 men.  But they live-on and fight for another five years.

Sep 14  On a summer day In Nice, France, Angela Isadora Duncan, age 50, American dance pioneer and bisexual leftist, says goodbye to friends and gets into the passenger seat of a sports car. As the car is driven off by a her handsome young companion, her long scarf gets caught in the car's rear wheel spokes and axle. She is partially decapitated and instantly killed.

Oct 6  The era of talking pictures begins with the opening of "The Jazz Singer," starring Al Jolson singing and dancing in black-face. The movie features both silent and sound-synchronized scenes.

Nov 12  The battle for toleration of continued disagreement and more Party democracy has been defeated. The "Left Opposition" within the party, including Leon Trotsky, has lost. Trotsky and Grigory Zinoviev are expelled from the Communist Party.

Nov 21  Unarmed coal miners on strike at the Columbine Mine in northern Colorado are fired up upon with machine guns. Six miners are killed.

Dec 19  A Communist Party Congress in December closes. Party delegates have condemned all deviation from what the Party in general has chosen as its positions and policies – a belief in closing ranks and in group-think. Party members who have supported the Opposition have been expelled from the Party. They are now to be seen as traitors and as threats to the development of proper ideas. Expelled Party members are to be fired from their regular jobs and their families are to be hounded. Trotsky will soon be sent into exile. Joseph Stalin has emerged as the Party's undisputed leader.

Dec 30  The Japanese are building what will be their great rail system. Today in Tokyo they open a commuter metro line, the Ginza Line.

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Copyright © 2015 by Frank E. Smitha. All rights reserved.