Aircraft of the Month - North American AT-6 Texan
An aircraft that doesn’t receive enough recognition by today’s civilians, is the North American AT-6 Texan. WWII fighter pilots had to log in around 70 to 80 hours of flight time in a AT-6 Texan before moving on to a Wildcat, Hellcat, P-40, or P-51. Navy and Marine Pilots flew and spent even more time at the controls of the Texan (SNJ-5’s & SNJ-6’s). In pilot training, the student knew he was headed for a real fighter aircraft if he could handle the AT-6 in dogfights. The Texan was placed in service in 1935 and played that all important role of preparing American Fighter Pilots for the rigors and skills needed for their trade. During WWII, the Texan served as the Instructor Aircraft. However, during the Korean War, modified Texans and SNJ’s saw combat area service in aerial surveillance and recon missions.
Fun Facts for October
October 6, 1949
In the Pacific War, American Troops listened to a Japanese Radio Announcer who went by the name of “Tokyo Rose”. She played the hot Songs and Big Band Hits of the day and in-between songs, Tokyo Rose used her soft and sexy voice to pass on Japanese propaganda to the troops. American Troops loved the music but ignored her propaganda. She was sentenced to 10 years for Treason. She was pardoned in 1977 by President Ford.
October 26, 1947
Hillary Rodham Clinton was born in Illinois. She was First Lady from 1993 to 2001. Elected to the U.S. Senate representing New York. Re-elected in 2006, Hillary later decided to run against Barack Obama for the Democratic Nomination for President. Hillary Clinton lost her first bid to become the first women elected America’s President. She served in 2008 as the U.S. Secretary of State. In 2016, Hillary did win the Democratic Nomination against Bernie Sanders to run for President in the General Election. However, she lost to the Republican Candidate Donald Trump.
October 26, 1825
America was fast moving west. Costing some $7 Million Dollars and eight years of hard labor, the Erie Canal was completed. The Canal not only linked the Hudson River with Lake Erie, but bypassed the British on the St. Lawrence River. The Erie Canal in 1825 provided Americans moving west a much faster means of travel into the Ohio and Illinois areas and into the then upper midwestern territories.
October 12, 1492
Christopher Columbus made landfall in the Caribbean Islands at an island he named El Salvador. This was the discovery of another world unknown to Europeans. He claimed everything he found in the name of the Spanish. He was looking for a western route to China for Trade and to his death really believed that he had found it. Because of this belief, Columbus named everyone he met in the New World – “Indians”.
Eddie Rickenbacker is born in 1890 in Columbus, Ohio. Eddie will be America’s leading Ace in the new form of warfare in the air. His first American Air Unit fights in the air over France and Rickenbacker is credited with 26 victories! He is given the Medal of Honor.
October 5, 1813
Chief Tecumseh is killed on this date at the Battle of the Thames in Ontario. He is Chief of the powerful Shawnee Indian Tribe which has been a constant thorn to American settlers, and sides with the British in the War of 1812. His Braves spread panic and fear all over the midwestern states burning homesteads, killing settlers, and taking captives for slaves. Just the same, Tecumseh is considered one of the most powerful Chiefs in American History, renowned even among Whites as an strong and stirring Orator.
October 4, 1957
American Education from College Students to Grade Schoolers undergoes a hurried and almost panicky transformation due to the Russians launching the first ever Satellite-into-Orbit around the Earth. This was the beginning of the Space Age and the Space Race. The then “Soviets” caused a convulsion inside the American Government and the nations educational society, leading to new approaches to math and science education.
October 2, 1987
The American Supreme Court saw its first Black American, Thurgood Marshall, sworn in as an associate justice of the United States Supreme Court. As a Justice, Marshall was keen on opposing discrimination, Free Speech, civil Liberties, and the death penalty.
The American Legend herself, “Molly Pitcher”, was born on this date, near Trenton, New Jersey. Her real name is Mary Ludwig Hays. But – Americans know her as “Molly Pitcher”! During the Battle of Monmouth in 1778, George Washington’s newly trained Continental Army emerges from Valley Forge to present battle with British General Clinton and his veteran British Army. Up to this time, Mary, along with other women, had been nicknamed “Molly Pitcher”, for carrying pitchers of water for the soldier’s thirst and to cool off their cannon barrels. During this engagement, Mary’s Husband, a gunner in the American Artillery under General Henry Knox is cut down next to his cannon. As the British advance towards Knox’s Artillery, as Mary witnesses the death of her husband, many of the cannoneers starting to waver. Mary Hays man’s her husband’s cannon and starts to load it herself. She fires into the British and screams for the American Cannoneers to return to their cannon! Inspired by her bravery, they do just that. Mary Hays, “Molly Pitcher” keeps manning the cannon until the battle is won. General Henry Knox presents “Molly Pitcher” to General Washington, explaining her story and actions. It is said that Mary Hays is made a full non-commissioned officer, a Sargent, and that she is known for the rest of her life as “Sargent Molly”, brightly etched in American History.
October 14, 1912
Did you know that President Theodore Roosevelt was shot on this date while campaigning in Milwaukee, Wisconsin? Being a tough and rugged individual, he still went to where he was scheduled to speak and with the bullet still lodged in his chest, gave his speech with none the wiser. He recovered in about two weeks. It seems his glass case, a thick overcoat, and his “folded’ speech may have just slowed the bullet down enough that a serious mortal wound was avoided.
October 14, 1947
The so called “sound barrier”, what pilots call this hidden and unseen phenomena, is finally “broken” or penetrated successfully by American Ace, U.S. Captain Chuck Yeager. His aircraft, “Glamorous Glennis”, is a specially manufactured for high speed ‘rocket-powered” aircraft dropped from a belly of the World War Two bomber.
October 17-25, 1944
The Battle of Leyte Gulf. It is the largest naval action in World History and takes several days to complete. What is left of the Japanese Imperial Fleet hurls itself against the U.S. Navy in a desperate bid to defeat the Americans. With no carrier planes to speak of, the Japanese Navy sends its Carriers on a diversion, while launching their Surface Fleet against the main battle line American Carriers. The Japanese fail to find the main American Carriers, only to attack the smaller Jeep Carriers off Leyte Gulf. The Japanese Navy suffers defeat and destruction, losing many of its heavy warships.
October 22, 1962
Many Americans still remember watching President John F. Kennedy appearing on their Televisions, informing Americans that a War with Russia was very close. Kennedy went on to explain that Russian Missiles were found in Cuba, a Soviet Satellite Country under the Leadership of the Communist Fidel Castro. Kennedy demanded the Missiles removed and announced to the world that a naval quarantine was now in effect. Americans lived through six very tense days, watching developments as the two super powers stared at each other. The Russians finally announced the Missiles would be removed.
October 21, 1967
In Washington, DC. Protesters gathered in the nation’s capital to against the U.S. Government’s continued involvement in the Vietnam War. Casualty lists were very high and many younger people were questioning “why” the war was taking place and “why fight the North Vietnamese”? Thousands of anti-war protesters tried to storm the Pentagon and suffered 250 arrests. Military and Police used nightsticks, water hoses, and in some cases rifle butts to stop the protesters. However, more protests around the country took place.
October 31, 1941
A month away before the attack on Peral Harbor in Hawaii, South Dakota witnessed the completion of the Mount Rushmore National Memorial Monument. It took 14 years to complete and featured the Heads of several great Presidents: Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. Mount Rushmore is in the Black Hills region of western South Dakota.
October 30, 1938
America was thrown into alarm by a simple Radio Broadcast that simply fooled listeners into thinking that an attack by outer space Martians was taking place in live time! The production of Actor Orson Welles, called “The War of the Worlds” was a forerunner of live dramatization that fooled many listeners into believing a real invasion was taking place. If anything, it proved beyond any doubt the power of Radio over a populace.
October 28, 1919
Just as the first World War in Europe was ending, the U.S. Congress voted to end all sales of Alcoholic drinks. Called the Volstead act, it ushered in what is known to history as “Prohibition” and the era of Gangsterism. Prohibition lasted some 14 years and was finally ended by President Roosevelt. However, organized crime had developed into such complex establishments during this era, that it still exists today and gives governments and local communities huge problems.
October 27, 1787
Young America is transformed by the first of 85 publishing’s, called the Federalist Papers. The confederation of American States must re-organize into a untied structure and the Federalist Papers argue for the States to adopt the new U.S. Constitution and form a Federal Centered Government. They are written by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay.
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