What Happened in October 1917

Historical Events

  • Oct 4 British assault on Broodseinde, France
  • Oct 6 Battle of Passchendaele: Canadian troops capture the village of Passchendaele in the Third Battle of Ypres, after 250,000 casualties on both sides

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Oct 8 Leon Trotsky named chairman of the Petrograd Soviet as Bolsheviks gain control

Russian Revolutionary Leon Trotsky
Russian Revolutionary
Leon Trotsky
  • Oct 10 Plymouth Theater opens at 236 W 45th St NYC
  • Oct 13 Soviets accept establishment of Petrograd Military
  • Oct 15 Chicago White Sox beat NY Giants, 4 games to 2 in 14th World Series

BattleExecution

Oct 15 Dutch exotic dancer Mata Hari is executed by firing squad for spying for Germany during WWI at Vincennes near Paris

Exotic Dancer, Courtesan and German Spy Mata Hari
Exotic Dancer, Courtesan and German Spy
Mata Hari
  • Oct 17 1st British bombing of Germany
  • Oct 19 Love Field in Dallas, Texas, is opened

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Oct 20 US suffragette Alice Paul begins a 7 month jail sentence for protesting women's rights in Washington

Suffragist Alice Paul
Suffragist
Alice Paul
  • Oct 21 1st Americans to see action on front lines of WWI: US troops enter front lines at Sommervillier under French command
  • Oct 21 Petrograds garrison accepts Revolutionary Military Committee
  • Oct 23 1st Infantry division "Big Red One" shoots 1st US shot in WW I

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Oct 23 Lenin speaks against Kamenev, Kollontai, Stalin & Trotsky

Marxist Revolutionary and Soviet Leader Vladimir Lenin
Marxist Revolutionary and Soviet Leader
Vladimir Lenin
Soviet General Secretary Joseph Stalin
Soviet General Secretary
Joseph Stalin
Russian Revolutionary Leon Trotsky
Russian Revolutionary
Leon Trotsky
  • Oct 24 Battle at Caporetto: German & Austria smash Italian army
  • Oct 25 Pan-Russian Congress opens in Petrograd
  • Oct 26 Petrograd Soviet accepts establishment of Military
  • Oct 26 World War I: Brazil declared in state of war with Central Powers.
  • Oct 27 20,000 women march in a suffrage parade in New York, US

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Oct 30 British government gives final approval to Balfour Declaration

British Prime Minister Arthur Balfour
British Prime Minister
Arthur Balfour
  • Oct 31 Eugene O'Neill's "In the Zone" premieres in NYC
  • Oct 31 World War I: Battle of Beersheba in southern Palestine - "last successful cavalry charge in history" performed by the 4th Australian Light Horse

Famous Birthdays

  • Oct 1 René A de Rooy, Suriname/Antillian poet (Juancho Picaflor)
  • Oct 2 Francis Jackson, British organist and composer, born in Malton, Yorkshire, England
  • Oct 2 William Marshall, American singer, bandleader and actor (State Fair, Pennsylvanians), born in Chicago, Illinois (d. 1994)
  • Oct 2 Christian de Duve, British cytologist and biochemist (Nobel 1974), born in Thames Ditton, Surrey (d. 2013)
  • Oct 4 Albert de Klerk, Dutch composer/conductor
  • Oct 4 Jan Murray, comedian (Treasure Hunt, Who Killed Teddy Bear), born in The Bronx, New York
  • Oct 5 Robert Adams, English sculptor and designer, born in Far Cotton, Northampton (d. 1984)

Person of interestFannie Lou Hamer

Oct 6 Fannie Lou Hamer, American civil rights activist (Freedom Summer, Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee), born in Montgomery County, Mississippi (d. 1977)

Civil Rights Activist Fannie Lou Hamer
Civil Rights Activist
Fannie Lou Hamer
  • Oct 7 June Allyson, actress (Till the Clouds Roll By, Vegas), born in The Bronx, New York
  • Oct 8 Danny Murtaugh, American baseball manager (Pittsburgh Pirates), born in Chester, Pennsylvania (d. 1976)
  • Oct 8 Hans Poser, German composer, born in Tannenbergsthal (d. 1970)
  • Oct 8 Billy Conn, American boxer, born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (d. 1993)
  • Oct 8 Walter Lord, American author (A Night to Remember), born in Baltimore, Maryland (d. 2002)
  • Oct 9 Kusuo Kitamura, Japanese 1500m freestyle swimmer (Olympic gold 1932), born in Kōchi, Japan (d. 1996)
  • Oct 10 Ilona Ference, American actress (Quatermass II, Star of My Night), born in Bar Harbor, Maine (d. 1996)
  • Oct 10 Thelonious Monk, American jazz pianist and composer, born in Rocky Mount, North Carolina (d. 1982)
  • Oct 11 Franz Alphons Wolpert, German composer, born in Wiesentheid, Germany (d. 1978)
  • Oct 12 Hans Bentz van den Berg, Dutch actor (Last Train), born in Blaricum, Netherlands (d. 1976)
  • Oct 13 Burr Tillstrom, puppeteer (Kukla, Fran & Ollie), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • Oct 15 Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr, American historian (1946 Pulitzer-Age of Jackson), born in Columbus, Ohio (d. 2007)
  • Oct 15 Jan Miner, American actress (Crime Photographer), born in Boston, Massachusetts (d. 2004)
  • Oct 16 Alice Pearce, American comedienne and actress (On the Town, Bewitched), born in NYC, New York (d. 1966)
  • Oct 17 Marsha Hunt, actress (Jennifer-Peck's Bad Girl, Jigsaw), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • Oct 17 Martin Donnelly, cricketer (brilliant lefty bat for NZ post-war)
  • Oct 17 Sumner Locke Elliott, Australian-born American novelist (d. 1991)
  • Oct 20 Efrain Jonckheer, premier Dutch Antilles
  • Oct 20 Jean-Pierre Melville, director (A Cop), born in Paris, France
  • Oct 20 Ken Cranston, cricketer (England all-rounder captained once in 1948)
  • Oct 21 Dizzy Gillespie, [John B], jazz trumpeter, a creator of modern jazz

Person of interestJoan Fontaine

Oct 22 Joan Fontaine, British-American actress (Gunga Din, Ivanhoe, Rebecca), born in Tokyo, Japan (d. 2013)

Actress Joan Fontaine
Actress
Joan Fontaine
  • Oct 23 Robert Bray, American actor (Corey-Lassie, Stagecoach West), born in Kalispell, Montana (d. 1983)
  • Oct 24 Marshall Goldberg, NFL halfback (Chicago Cardinals)
  • Oct 25 Lee MacPhail, American Baseball Hall of Fame executive (AL President), born in Nashville, Tennessee (d. 2012)
  • Oct 26 Mario Biaggi, American politician (Rep-D&R-NY, 1969-88), born in New York (d. 2015)
  • Oct 27 Jack Plimsoll, South African cricketer (South African lefty quick, 3-143 in only Test 1947), born in Kalk Bay, South Africa (d. 1999)
  • Oct 27 Oliver Tambo, South African lawyer, anti-apartheid politician and co-founder (African National Congress), born in Nkantolo, Bizana, South Africa (d. 1993)
  • Oct 27 Augustine Harris, British Bishop of Middlesbrough, born in West Derby, Liverpool (d. 2007)
  • Oct 28 Jack Soo [Goro Suzuki], Japanese-American actor (Flower Drum Song, Barney Miller), born in Oakland, California (d. 1979)
  • Oct 29 Henry Carlsson, Swedish soccer (Olympic gold 1948)
  • Oct 30 Bobby Bragan, American baseball player
  • Oct 30 Nikolai Vasilievich Ogarkov, Soviet field marshal (d. 1994)
  • Oct 31 Erik Routley, English Congregational minister, composer and musicologist, born in England (d. 1982)
  • Oct 31 William H. McNeill, Canadian-born historian (Rise of the West), born in Vancouver, British Columbia (d. 2016)

Famous Weddings

  • Oct 21 Irish poet and playwright William Butler Yeats (52) weds Georgie Hyde-Lees (25)

Famous Deaths

  • Oct 9 Hussain Kamil, sultan of Egypt (1914-17), dies at 63
  • Oct 11 Harry Trott, cricketer (Aust capt played 24 Tests 1888-1898), dies
  • Oct 13 Florence La Badie, American actress

Person of interestMata Hari

Oct 15 Mata Hari [Margaretha Geertruida Zelle], Dutch dancer, courtesan and convicted German WWI spy, executed by firing squad at 41

Exotic Dancer, Courtesan and German Spy Mata Hari
Exotic Dancer, Courtesan and German Spy
Mata Hari
  • Oct 17 Maria J "Marie" Bakker, actress/wife of Maarten Stranger, dies at 59
  • Oct 22 Bob Fitzsimmons, English boxer (b. 1863)
  • Oct 27 Arthur Rhys-Davids, English flying ace (WW I), dies at 20
  • Oct 28 Prince Christian of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Augustenburg (b. 1831)
  • Oct 31 Tibby Cotter, Australian cricketer and fast bowler (49 wickets for Australia) and member of the 12th Regiment who captured Beersheba in the world's last successful cavalry charge, dies at 33