Jan 5 In California, construction of the Golden Gate Bridge begins.
Jan 28 Some Muslims in India have joined together to work for independence and separation. The word Pakistan comes into being.
Jan 30 Adolf Hitler begins his first government service as the Germany's Reichskanzier (chancellor or prime minister), appointed by President Hindenburg. Many expect him to start fixing Germany's problems.
Jan 30 In the United States, another to be known for fixing people's troubles, the Lone Ranger, begins his program on radio.
Feb 1 Chancellor Hitler delivers his "Proclamation" to the German Nation." It begins: "More than fourteen years have passed since the unhappy day when the German people, blinded by promises from foes at home and abroad, lost touch with honor and freedom, thereby losing all." Well into his speech he says that, "Communism with its method of madness is making a powerful and insidious attack upon our dismayed and shattered nation." He promises to end the nation's economic distress and attendant personal miseries, and ends: "May God Almighty give our work His blessing, strengthen our purpose, and endow us with wisdom and the trust of our people, for we are fighting not for ourselves but for Germany."
Feb 9 At Oxford University, with World War I in mind, students debate the resolution that "this House will in no circumstance fight for king and country." The resolution passes. A similar sentiment is prevalent at U.S. universities.
Feb 27-28 Germany's parliament building, the Reichstag, is set afire. The fire is described as the work of Communists trying to overthrow the government. The public accepts the explanation. An emergency decree is passed, nullifying some rights of all German citizens and allowing their "preventive detainment." Communist Party leaders are arrested.
Mar 4 To a gathering at the Berlin Sportspalace, Hitler associates Marxism with the mass starvation in the Ukraine, and he associates Marxism with both communists and Germany's Social Democrats, blurring over the differences between these two groups, while communists were avoiding an alliance with the Social Democrats and calling them frauds and "social fascists." Stalin is on a similar tack, lumping his political opponents into a single group he calls "fascists."
Mar 4 Franklin Roosevelt takes office.
Mar 5 Roosevelt closes banks for a few days in order to stop "heavy and unwarranted withdrawals of gold and currency" and to stop "increasingly extensive speculative activity." Other issues are involved. Roosevelt is beginning his move against deflation.
Mar 5 In Germany, elections for parliament are held. Hitler's party wins 43.9 percent rather than the more than 50 percent that Hitler was expecting. He is forced to maintain a coalition with the German National People's Party. The Nazis begin a boycott of Jewish businesses throughout Germany.
Mar 12 President Roosevelt delivers his first "fireside chat." He begins: "I want to talk for a few minutes with the people of the United States about banking." He goes on to say, "Some of our bankers had shown themselves either incompetent or dishonest in their handling of the people's funds. They had used the money entrusted to them in speculations and unwise loans."
Mar 15 The Dow Jones Industrial Average rises from 53.84 to 62.10, a gain of 15.34 percent. This will be the Dow's largest one-day percentage gain.
Mar 20 Heinrich Himmler, Hitler's SS paramilitary leader, opens the first Nazi concentration camp, at Dachau.
Mar 23 Hitler has moved for a vote in the Reichstag that allows him to make laws without consulting the Reichstag – the Enabling Act. Support from the Catholic political party (the Centre Party) and the jailing of Communist delegates allow Hitler the two-thirds majority he needs for passage.
Mar 27 Japan has declared its holdings in Manchuria an independent country. League of Nations members have voted overwhelmingly against recognizing Japan's rule in Manchuria (Manchukuo). Japan announces that it intends to withdraw from the League in two years. Emperor Hirohito regrets this and is hopeful that good relations with other countries can be maintained.
Mar 31 The world's economic crisis is accompanied by a temporary end to Uruguay's democracy. Gabriel Terra, president since 1931, dissolves parliament and begins ruling by decree. The constitution is abrogated, newspapers are censored and university professors are jailed or put in isolation on an island, the “Isla de Flores.”
Apr 5 President Roosevelt declares a national emergency and issues Executive Order 6102, making it illegal for U.S. citizens to own gold.
Apr 7 In the United States, beer that is no more than 3.2 percent alcohol is made legal again.
Apr 19 The United States officially abandons the gold standard of exchange – except for a few gold coins. The move allows the government more flexibility in adjusting the money supply.
Jul 1 What began as suppression of communists is being extended to other political opponents of the Nazis. By now in Germany it is illegal to belong to any political party other han the Nazis. Germany is becoming a single-party state. Germany's communist party is not allowed the 81 seats it has won in elections. (Bloodlands, p 63)
Jul 20 The Vatican signs a concordant with the new German government. Pope Pius XI, who dislikes fascism, sees Germany as a bulwark against Communism which he believes is the greatest danger to civilization.
Sep 8 King Faisal, of the Hashim (Hashimite) family, friend of the British and ruler of Iraq, dies of a heart attack while in Switzerland. He is to be succeeded by his son, Faisal II.
Oct 8 In Germany, Ewald Banse, a school teacher, has written a book that describes the League of Nations as having forbidden biological warfare. But, Banse asserts, with national survival at stake "every method is permissible." The German government is concerned about Germany's image abroad, bans the book and orders all copies confiscated. (Human Smoke, p. 44-45.)
Oct 14 Germany announces its withdrawal from the League of Nations.
Oct 17 Albert Einstein arrives in the United States as a refugee from Germany.
Oct 17 Hitler assures the US ambassador that attacks on Americans for not giving the Hitler salute would end attacks by young toughs who might not have recognized the Americans as foreigners.
October In Egypt, the "Young Egypt" (Misr al-Fatah) paramilitary movement begins, modeled after Hitler's National Socialists, with Green (for Islam) shirts, the Roman (Nazi) salute and translations of Nazi slogans. Its leader is Ahmed Husayn. Two fifteen-year-old members are Gamal Abdel-Nasser and Anwar Sadat.
Nov 8 Roosevelt unveils the Civil Works Administration, an organization designed to create jobs for more than 4 million of the unemployed, which will pump more money into the economy.
Nov 11-13 The prairie grasses that had previously held the soil have been replaced by plowing. Winds blow dry topsoil across the Dakotas, Oklahoma, Kansas and nearby states in what for the year is a series of dust storms.
Dec 19 Rains have been continuous for days, and the great Los Angeles flood is on its way, to be sung about by Woody Guthrie. Thunder rocks the Los Angeles area, and lightning marks a signicant event. Margaret Smitha, 24, native Californian, bookkeeper at Van Ausdall motors, near the corner of Santa Monica and Doheny boulevards in West Hollywood, wife of Carl Smitha, auto mechanic at Van Ausdall Motors, gives birth to a boy they name Frank.
Dec 31 This year "some two hundred thousand Germans were locked up, most of them men seen as left-wing opponents of the regime ... most of these peple were released after short periods" — a strategy of intimidation. (Bloodlands, p 63)
Dec 31 This year in the Ukrainian Soviet Republic, "a few tens of thousands of city dwellers actually died of starvation ... the result of Stalin's First Five-Year Plan ... He had trasnformed the market into the plan, farmers into slaves, and the wastes of Siberia and Kazakhstan into a chain of concentration camps." (Bloodlands, p 23–24)
Copyright © 2006-2013 by Frank E. Smitha. All rights reserved.