Browsing: August 16

A Brief History On August 16, 1927, the Dole Air Race began, with 8 airplanes taking off from Oakland, California and heading to Honolulu, Hawaii.  Of the 8 planes that managed to get into the air and race, 6 were lost with the loss of 10 men.  Only 2 of the planes made it to Hawaii.  Sometimes races of any type go wrong, horribly wrong, and people or animals end up dead or maimed, sometimes not even the participants!  Here we list 5 disastrous races.  Which races would you add to the list? Digging Deeper 1.  Dole Air Race, 1927. Also known…

A Brief History On August 16, 1945, the last Emperor in China, Puyi of Manchuria, was captured by the Soviet Army.  Puyi, also known as Henry Puyi, was the last Qing Emperor of China from 1908 to 1912, deposed while still a child (born 1906) by the Xinhai Revolution of 1912.  The former Xuantong Emperor lived quietly until the Japanese occupation of Manchuria (Manchukuo) in 1932. Digging Deeper The Japanese made Puyi their puppet ruler of Manchukuo, and in 1934 declared him Emperor Datong, the Kangde Emperor of Manchukuo.  This regime lasted only until the end of Japanese occupation in…

A Brief History On August 16, 1942, while on routine anti-submarine patrol, the 2 man crew of US Navy Blimp L-8 disappeared without a trace.  The unmanned blimp drifted about aimlessly until crash landing in Daly City, California.  No trace of the crew or reason for their disappearance has ever been found. Digging Deeper (Note: An unrelated disaster, the 1964 Republican National Convention was held in the modern city limits of Daly City, although History usually refers to the convention as being held in San Francisco.  Barry Goldwater was nominated for President, and went on to lose by a record…

A Brief History On August 16, 1944, the Nazis flew the prototype of the Ju-287 for the first time.  Manufactured by the German aircraft company Junkers, it was a 4-engine, jet-powered bomber whose forward-swept wings made it radically different from any other airplane in existence at the time. Digging Deeper With a turbojet engine on each side of its nose, and another under each wing, the Ju-287 flew to speeds of almost 350 mph, which was fast but still not fast enough. Originally it was supposed to have been equipped with even more powerful jet engines, but developmental difficulties meant that Junkers had to go with what was available, the Jumo…

A Brief History On August 16, 1812, General William Hull of the U.S. Army surrendered Fort Detroit to an inferior English force.  American forces numbered about 2,100, while the combined English and Native American forces only numbered just over 1,300.  Hull was court-martialed, convicted and sentenced to death.  Luckily President Madison gave him a reprieve.  History is full of military blunders and dunderheads, and here we list 10 (in no particular order) of those unfortunate men who found themselves in a position to prove just what lousy tacticians they were.  Who would you add to the list?  (Hint:  There are a stunning number of really bad…