June 1944

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1944
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The following events occurred in June 1944:

June 1, 1944 (Thursday)

June 2, 1944 (Friday)

June 3, 1944 (Saturday)

June 4, 1944 (Sunday)

  • The Italian capital of Rome fell to the Allies. There was little fighting in the city itself as American tanks rolled along the Appian Way. The Germans ignored Hitler's order to blow up the Tiber bridges before retreating and the city's historic sites were left intact.[6]
  • Royal Air Force meteorologist Group Captain James Stagg recommended that Overlord be postponed one day from June 5 to the 6th because of bad weather. Dwight D. Eisenhower followed his advice and postponed D-Day by 24 hours.[10]
  • German submarine U-505 was captured off Río de Oro by ships of the U.S. Navy. The sub's codebooks, Enigma machine and other secret materials found on board would be of assistance to Allied codebreakers.
  • Born: Michelle Phillips, singer, songwriter, actress and member of The Mamas & the Papas, in Long Beach, California

June 5, 1944 (Monday)

June 6, 1944 (Tuesday)

  • D-Day: Operation Overlord commenced with the crossing of nearly 160,000 Allied troops over the English Channel to land on the beaches of Normandy, France.
  • Adolf Hitler was awoken at the Berghof around noon and informed of the Normandy landings. Hitler displayed no outward signs of distress and appeared to be confident that the invasion would be repulsed.[12]
  • War photographer Robert Capa took The Magnificent Eleven D-Day photographs.
  • The battle for Pointe du Hoc resulted in Allied victory, while the Battle of Merville Gun Battery was fought to inconclusive result.
  • The Battle of Port-en-Bessin began.
  • The British executed Operation Deadstick, Operation Houndsworth and Operation Mallard.
  • Stanley Hollis earned the only Victoria Cross to be awarded for D-Day.
  • Winston Churchill announced the Normandy landings in an address to the House of Commons. "I cannot, of course, commit myself to any particular details," Churchill said. "Reports are coming in in rapid succession. So far the Commanders who are engaged report that everything is proceeding according to plan. And what a plan! This vast operation is undoubtedly the most complicated and difficult that has ever occurred ... Nothing that equipment, science or forethought could do has been neglected, and the whole process of opening this great new front will be pursued with the utmost resolution both by the commanders and by the United States and British Governments whom they serve."[13]
  • The Norwegian destroyer Svenner was sunk off Sword Beach by a German torpedo boat, the only Allied ship to be sunk by German naval activity on D-Day.
  • President Roosevelt went on national radio at night to address the nation about the Normandy invasion. The president's address took the form a prayer. It began: "Almighty God: Our sons, pride of our Nation, this day have set upon a mighty endeavor, a struggle to preserve our Republic, our religion, and our civilization, and to set free a suffering humanity. Lead them straight and true; give strength to their arms, stoutness to their hearts, steadfastness in their faith."[14]
  • On the Eastern Front, the First Jassy–Kishinev Offensive ended in Soviet failure.
  • Operation Rösselsprung concluded. Although the activities of the Yugoslav Partisans were temporarily disrupted by the operation, it failed in its objective of capturing or killing Marshal Josip Broz Tito.
  • Japanese destroyer Minazuki was sunk in the Sibutu Passage by the American submarine Harder.
  • Born: Edgar Froese, artist and electronic musician, in Tilsit, East Prussia (d. 2015); Phillip Allen Sharp, geneticist and molecular biologist, in Falmouth, Kentucky; Tommie Smith, track & field athlete and AFL wide receiver, in Clarksville, Texas
  • Died: Jimmie W. Monteith, 26, U.S. Army officer and posthumous recipient of the Medal of Honor (killed in action on D-Day); John J. Pinder, Jr., 32, U.S. Army soldier and posthumous recipient of the Medal of Honor (killed in action on D-Day)

June 7, 1944 (Wednesday)

  • The Battle of Bréville began.
  • The British began Operation Perch, an attempt to encircle and capture the city of Caen.
  • Operation Tonga ended in Allied tactical victory.
  • Operation Hasty ended with less than half the original force returning safely to British lines.
  • German submarine U-629 was sunk in the English Channel by a B-24 of No. 53 Squadron RAF.
  • Japanese destroyer Hyanami became the second ship to be torpedoed and sunk in the Sibutu Passage by USS Harder in as many days.
  • American destroyer Meredith struck a mine in the English Channel and was severely damaged. Salvage efforts would be abandoned on June 9 when Luftwaffe bombing broke the ship in two.
  • Actress Judy Garland divorced her husband of three years, songwriter David Rose, on grounds of general cruelty.[15]

June 8, 1944 (Thursday)

June 9, 1944 (Friday)

June 10, 1944 (Saturday)

June 11, 1944 (Sunday)

June 12, 1944 (Monday)

  • U.S. and British forces in Normandy linked up near Carentan, forming a solid 50-mile battlefront with 326,000 men and 54,000 vehicles.[1]
  • German submarine U-490 was depth charged and sunk in the Atlantic Ocean by American warships.
  • U.S. Task Force 58 attacked Japanese facilities and shipping in preparation for the landings on Saipan, sinking one torpedo boat and twelve merchant ships of Japanese convoy CD-4.[22]
  • President Roosevelt gave his 30th and final fireside chat, on the subject of the opening of the Fifth War Loan Drive.

June 13, 1944 (Tuesday)

June 14, 1944 (Wednesday)

June 15, 1944 (Thursday)

June 16, 1944 (Friday)

  • The Treaty of Vis was signed in Yugoslavia, in an attempt by the Western Powers to merge the Yugoslav government in exile with the Communist Partisans fighting on the ground. The agreement provided for an interim government until the people could decide the postwar form of government in democratic elections.
  • The British Eighth Army in Italy took Foligno and Spoleto.[7]
  • Born: Henri Richelet, painter, in Frebécourt, France
  • Died: Marc Bloch, 57, French historian (shot by the Gestapo for his work in the French Resistance); George Stinney, 14, African-American youth convicted of murder and the youngest person in 20th century U.S. history to be sentenced to death and executed (death by electric chair)

June 17, 1944 (Saturday)

June 18, 1944 (Sunday)

June 19, 1944 (Monday)

  • The Battle of the Philippine Sea began. On the first day, the Japanese lost two aircraft carriers to American submarines: Shōkaku was torpedoed and sunk by Cavalla, while Taihō was sunk by USS Albacore.
  • In a massive coordinated sabotage operation, 100,000 Soviet partisan guerrillas detonated over 10,000 explosions to the rear of German Army Group Centre positions. Supply and communications were rendered inoperable for days.[24]
  • Changsha fell to the Japanese in China.[27]

June 20, 1944 (Tuesday)

  • The Battle of the Philippine Sea ended in American victory. Japanese aircraft carrier Hiyō was torpedoed and sunk by the USS Albacore, bringing total Japanese losses for the two-day battle to three carriers, two oilers and around 600 aircraft.
  • The Soviets captured Viipuri on the Karelian Isthmus.[1]
  • Nazi-subordinated Lithuanian Security Police carried out the Glinciszki massacre of 37 mostly Polish residents of the village of Glitiškės.
  • TWA Flight 277 en route from Stephenville, Newfoundland to Washington, D.C. crashed on Fort Mountain, Maine. All seven on board were killed.
  • British Minister of Production Oliver Lyttelton departed from the prepared text of a speech to the American Chamber of Commerce in London and stated, "Japan was provoked into attacking the Americans at Pearl Harbor. It is a travesty on history to ever say that America was forced into the war. Everyone knows were American sympathies were. It is incorrect to say that America was ever truly neutral even before America came into the war on an all-out fighting basis." These remarks were instantly controversial; U.S. Secretary of State Cordell Hull released a statement that same day calling Lyttelton's comment "entirely in error as to the facts and fails to state the true attitude of the United States both during the earlier stages of military preparation for world conquest by Germany and Japan and during the later aggressions by those two countries. This government from the beginning to the end was actuated by the single policy of self-defense against the rapidly increasing danger to this nation."[28][29]

June 21, 1944 (Wednesday)

  • The British Eighth Army reached the German defensive Trasimene Line in Italy.[30]
  • The British destroyer Fury struck a mine off Sword Beach, Normandy and was declared a total loss.
  • Oliver Lyttelton rose in the House of Commons to give an "explanation" for his remarks of the previous day. "I was trying, in a parenthesis, to make clear the gratitude which this country feels for the help given to us in the war against Germany, before Japan attacked the United States," Lyttelton said. "The words I used, however, when read textually, and apart from the whole tenor of my speech, seemed to mean that the help given us against Germany provoked Japan to attack. This is manifestly untrue. I want to make it quite clear that I do not complain of being misreported, and any misunderstanding is entirely my own fault. I ask the House to believe, however, that the fault was one of expression and not of intention. I hope this apology will undo any harm that the original words may have caused here or in the United States."[31]
  • Born: Ray Davies, rock guitarist, vocalist and songwriter for The Kinks, in Fortis Green, London, England

June 22, 1944 (Thursday)

June 23, 1944 (Friday)

June 24, 1944 (Saturday)

  • Hitler ordered all but one division of the German LIII Korps, encircled near Vitebsk, to break out.[1]
  • The British cargo ship Derrycunihy was sunk off Normandy with great loss of life by a Luftwaffe acoustic mine.
  • On the Normandy front the Germans deployed a new weapon—the unmanned Mistel aircraft.[33]
  • Japanese submarine I-52 was depth charged and sunk southwest of the Azores by a Grumman TBF Avenger.
  • German submarine U-1225 was depth charged and sunk west of Bergen by a PBY Canso of No. 162 Squadron RCAF.
  • The Adelaide Mail in Australia published an article revealing that Ern Malley, supposedly a poet who had died as a complete unknown in 1943 but whose poems had recently been published in the avant-garde magazine Angry Penguins to great acclaim, never existed at all. Ern Malley's entire biography and body of work was a hoax created in a single afternoon by the writers James McAuley and Harold Stewart, calculated to embarrass Angry Penguins editor Max Harris by demonstrating how easy it was to write meaningless poetry in the modernist style and get intellectuals to praise it.[34][35]
  • Born: Jeff Beck, rock guitarist, in Wallington, London, England

June 25, 1944 (Sunday)

June 26, 1944 (Monday)

June 27, 1944 (Tuesday)

June 28, 1944 (Wednesday)

June 29, 1944 (Thursday)

June 30, 1944 (Friday)

References

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  2. ^ Gehlen, Reinhard (1972). The Service: The Memoirs of Reinhard Gehlen. New York: World Publishing Co. p. 94. ISBN 978-0-529-04455-6. 
  3. ^ Bowman, John Stewart (1998). Facts about the American Wars. H. W. Wilson Co. p. 465. ISBN 978-0-8242-0929-2. 
  4. ^ Kaiser, Don (2011). "K-Ships Across the Atlantic" (PDF). Naval Aviation News. 93 (2). Retrieved March 1, 2016. 
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  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "1944". MusicAndHistory. Retrieved March 1, 2016. 
  8. ^ Shevlin, Maurice (June 4, 1944). "16-1 Shot Beats Pensive in Belmont Stakes". Chicago Daily Tribune. p. Part 2, p. 1. 
  9. ^ Donvan, John; Zucker, Caren (2016). In a Different Key: The Story of Autism (eBook). Crown Publishing. ISBN 978-0-307-98568-2. 
  10. ^ Klein, Christopher (June 4, 2014). "The Weather Forecast That Saved D-Day". History. Retrieved March 1, 2016. 
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  12. ^ Grier, Peter (June 6, 2015). "D-Day June 6, 1944: How did Hitler react?". The Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved March 1, 2016. 
  13. ^ "Liberation of Rome: Landings in France". Hansard. June 6, 1944. Retrieved March 1, 2016. 
  14. ^ "A 'Mighty Endeavor:' D-Day". Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum. Retrieved March 1, 2016. 
  15. ^ "Judy Garland Gets Divorce". San Jose Evening News. San Jose, California. June 7, 1944. p. 6. 
  16. ^ "War Diary for Thursday, 8 June 1944". Stone & Stone Second World War Books. Retrieved March 1, 2016. 
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  18. ^ "U-441". Uboat.net. Retrieved March 1, 2016. 
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  22. ^ "IJN Escort CD-4: Tabular Record of Movement". Imperial Japanese Navy Page. Retrieved March 1, 2016. 
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