On This Day

April 1944 in History

Events in History

  • Apr 1 Japanese troops conquer Jessami, Eastern India
  • Apr 2 Palmiro Togliatti, leader of the Italian Communist Party returns to Italy from the Soviet Union
  • Apr 2 Soviet Army marches into pro-German Romania
  • Apr 3 British dive bombers attack German battleship Tirpitz at Kåfjorden, Norway
  • Apr 3 US Supreme Court (Smith v Allwright) "white primaries" unconstitutional
  • Apr 4 British troops capture Addis Ababa Ethiopia

Historic Event

Apr 4 French General Charles de Gaulle forms new regime in exile, with communists

  • Apr 4 Allied Bucharest bombings targeting railroads kills 5,000
  • Apr 5 140 Lancasters bomb aircraft factory in Toulouse
  • Apr 5 World War II: 270 inhabitants of the Greek town of Kleisoura are executed by the Germans
  • Apr 6 Jewish nursery at Izieu-Ain, France, overrun by Nazis

D-Day

Apr 7 World War II: General Montgomery speaks to generals at St. Paul's School about his vision for the upcoming D-Day landings

Catholic Encyclical

Apr 9 Pope Pius XII publishes encyclical Orientals Ecclesiae

  • Apr 10 "Patrolling the Ether" is shown on 3 TV stations simultaneously
  • Apr 10 Soviet forces liberate Odessa from the Axis powers
  • Apr 11 RAF bombs census bureau in The Hague

Historic Event

Apr 12 Lillian Hellman's "Searching Wind" premieres in NYC

  • Apr 13 South Carolina rejects black suffrage

Historic Event

Apr 13 Transport #71 departs Drancy (France) internment camp, taking 1,500 French Jews to Auschwitz concentration camp in Nazi German occupied Poland; an estimated 91 survived

  • Apr 13 New Zealand and the Soviet Union establish diplomatic relations
  • Apr 14 1st Jews transported from Athens arrive at Auschwitz
  • Apr 14 Freighter "Fort Stikene" explodes in Bombay India, killing 1,376

Historic Event

Apr 14 General Eisenhower becomes the Supreme Allied Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Force

  • Apr 14 Greek Colonel Venizelos forms government
  • Apr 19 Allied fleet attack Sabang Sumatra
  • Apr 20 Dutch Communist Party resistance fighter John Postma sentence to death
  • Apr 22 Allies land near Hollandia, New Guinea
  • Apr 24 1st Boeing B-29 arrives in China "over the Hump"
  • Apr 25 United Negro College Fund incorporates
  • Apr 26 1st B-29 attacked by Japanese fighters, one fighter shot down
  • Apr 26 Papandreou government in Greece forms

Meeting of Interest

Apr 28 Soviet leader Joseph Stalin meets Polish-American priest Stanislaus Orlemanski in Moscow to discuss religion and the future of post-war Poland

  • Apr 28 Exercise "Tiger" ends with 750 US soldiers dead in D-Day rehearsal after their convoy ships were attacked by German torpedo boats off Slapton Sands, Devon.
  • Apr 29 Raid by Dutch Resistance on the National Printing Office in The Hague to procure 10,000 Dutch identity cards.
  • Apr 30 NY Giant Phil Weintraub gets 11 RBIs

Birthdays in History

  • Apr 4 Magda Aelvoet, Belgian politician (Greens), born in Steenokkerzeel, Belgium
  • Apr 5 Ann Maxwell, American sci-fi author (Jaws of Menx), born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Apr 5 James Buckley, CEO (Baltic Exchange)
  • Apr 5 Peter T. King, American politician, U.S. House of Representatives from New York, born in Manhattan, New York
  • Apr 5 Pedro Rosselló, Puerto Rican politician, U.S. House of Representatives from Puerto Rico, born in San Juan, Puerto Rico
  • Apr 7 Gerhard Schröder, Chancellor of Germany
  • Apr 8 Christoph Hein, German writer and translator, born in Heinzendorf, Germany
  • Apr 8 Odd Nerdrum, Norwegian painter
  • Apr 11 R. J. B Knight, British deputy director (National Maritime Museum)
  • Apr 12 Lisa Jardine, British historian and writer, born in Oxford, England (d. 2015)
  • Apr 13 Charles Burnett, American film director (When It Rains; Glass Shield), born in Vicksburg, Mississippi
  • Apr 13 Susan Davis, American politician (U.S. House of Representatives from California (D), 2001-21), born in Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Apr 15 Dzhokhar Dudayev, separatist leader and President of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria (1991), born in Yalkhori, Chechen-Ingush (d. 1996)

Robert Hanssen

Apr 18 Robert Hanssen, American FBI agent and Soviet spy, born in Chicago, Illinois

  • Apr 19 James Heckman, American economist (Nobel Prize 2000), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • Apr 22 Steve Fossett, American adventurer (1st person to fly solo nonstop around the world in a balloon), born in Jackson, Tennessee (disappeared 2007)
  • Apr 26 David O'Brien Martin, American politician (Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New York), born in St. Lawrence Co., New York
  • Apr 26 Amien Rais, Indonesian politician (leader of Muhammadiyah 1995-2000), born in Surakarta, Dutch East Indies
  • Apr 27 Michael Fish, British TV weatherman, born in Eastbourne, Sussex, England
  • Apr 28 Elizabeth LeCompte, American theater director (founding member of The Wooster Group), born in New Jersey
  • Apr 28 Jean-Claude Van Cauwenberghe, Belgian politician
  • Apr 28 Alice Waters, American chef
  • Apr 29 Benedikte, Danish princess and second daughter of Frederick IX, born in Amalienborg Palace, Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Apr 30 Richard Shoff, American rocker (Sandpipers), born in Seattle

Deaths in History

  • Apr 4 John Peale Bishop, American poet (Undertaker's Garland), dies at 51
  • Apr 5 Isolde Kurz, German writer/poetess (Meine Mutter), dies at 90
  • Apr 9 Evgeniya Rudneva, Russian World War II heroine (b. 1920)
  • Apr 13 Paul Hazard, French critic and literature historian, dies at 65
  • Apr 15 Giovanni Gentile, Italian philosopher (The Doctrine of Fascism), dies at 68
  • Apr 19 Tommy Hitchcock, polo player (Westchester Cup 1924, 27), dies at 44
  • Apr 24 William Stephens, U.S. political figure (b. 1859)
  • Apr 28 Frank Knox, American politician (Republican VP candidate 1936), newspaper editor and Secretary of the Navy during World War II, dies at 70
  • Apr 29 Bernardino Machado, President of Portugal (1915–17, 1925–26), dies at 93
  • Apr 29 Billy Bitzer, American cinematography pioneer, dies at 72
  • Apr 30 Paul Poiret, French couturier, the most fashionable dress designer of pre-World War I, dies at 65