20 December 1941
On this date in 1941…
Southerner Claire Lee Chennault’s American Volunteer Group, the Flying Tigers, acting as part of the Chinese Air Force, were the first American forces to strike an offensive blow at the Japanese military when they dove on 10 Japanese bombers enroute to bomb Kunming, China. The Flying Tigers’ P-40 Warhawks shot down 4 Japanese planes and prevented any bombers from reaching the Chinese capital.
- 1606 – The “Susan Constant,” “Godspeed” and “Discovery” set sail from London. Their landing at Jamestown, Virginia, was the start of the first permanent English settlement in America.
- 1803 – The French flag was lowered in New Orleans to mark formal transfer of Louisiana Purchase from France to US for 27 million dollars.
- 1820 – Missouri imposed a $1 bachelor tax on unmarried men between age 21 & 50.
- 1860 – South Carolina became the U.S. state to secede from the Union.
- 1862 – General Earl Van Dorn’s Confederate cavalry destroyed General Ulysses Grant’s federal supply base at Holly Springs, Mississippi.
- 1893 – Georgia became the first state to pass an anti-lynching statute.
- 1907 – An explosion at a Yolande, Alabama coal mine killed 91 miners.
- 1957 – Elvis Presley was drafted by the U.S. Army and sent to Fort Chaffee, Arkansas for training.
- 1998 – In Houston, Texas a 27-year-old woman gave birth to the only known living set of octuplets.
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