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The FReeper Foxhole Remembers Claire Chennault & "The Flying Tigers" - Mar. 14th, 2003 ^

Posted on 03/14/2003 5:20:32 AM PST by SAMWolf

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General Claire Chennault & "The Flying Tigers"

The Flying Tigers were a group of American fighter pilots that flew for China in the early part of 1942. Led by a controversial American, Colonel Claire Chennault, they were actually called the "American Volunteer Group" (AVG), and achieved good success in their aerial battles against the Japanese.

They were a relatively small group of pilots, and never had more than 100 Curtis Warhawk P-40's (decorated with the famous red shark mouth) available. But at the time they were flying (early 1942), they were the only Americans doing ANYTHING against the Axis. With an American public reeling from Pearl Harbor and anxious to strike back "NOW!" the Flying Tigers were "the only game in town" at that point. Thus they received a lot of favorable press coverage, from reporters anxious to write about the only only Americans doing ANYTHING ANYWHERE against the Japanese.

The Flying Tigers comprised three squadrons:

1st Squadron - "Adam and Eves"
2nd Squadron - "Panda Bears"
3rd Squadron - "Hell's Angels"

The top aces of the Flying Tigers were: David Lee "Tex" Hill, Robert Neale, and Chuck Older. James Howard flew with the AVG; he later earned the Congressional Medal of Honor while flying P-51s for the 354th Fighter Group (Ninth Air Force) in Europe. Pappy Boyington was another Tiger who went on to greater fame; he had a falling out with Chennault, who gave him a Dishonorable Discharge. The mercurial Boyington never forgave him.

"Colonel" Claire Lee Chennault had been in China since the mid-Thirties; he called himself "Colonel," though his highest rank had been Major. An outspoken advocate of "pursuit" (as fighter planes were called then), in an Army Air Force dominated by strategic bomber theorists, he alienated many of his superiors. But in China, equipped with P-40's, he developed the basic fighter tactics that American pilots would use throughout the war. The Japanese planes used over China were much more maneuverable than his Warhawks, whose advantages were: speed in a dive, superior firepower, and better ability to absorb battle damage. Chennault worked out and documented the appropriate tactics that capitalized on the relative strengths of the American fighters: intercept, make a diving pass, avoid dogfighting, and dive away when in trouble. This remained the fundamental U.S. fighter doctrine throughout the Pacific War. My appreciation of the pilot's bravery and Chennault's tactical skills, however, doesn't change my assessment of the unfortunate and perhaps distracting role they played. The Chinese politics and Chinese-American relations at the time were quite complicated. The titular leader of China, Generalissimo Chiang Kai Chek, of the Kuomintang, was engaged in an endless three-way war: his Kuomintang vs. Mao's Communists vs. Japan. And his own power within the Kuomintang was dependent on balancing various warlords, cliques, and factions. Given the understandable problems posed by this situation, he always wanted more and more American aid, which he and his generals then wanted to use against internal enemies as well as Japan, or perhaps, not to use at all, but to hoard as symbols of their power.

General Chennault, got the Generalissimo's ear, and persuaded him that air power could sweep the Japanese from China, almost effortlessly and painlessly, just a few score American B-17 bombers would do the trick. Thus Chiang Kai Chek, General Chennault, Madame Chiang Kai Chek, and the powerful China Lobby used their combined influence with the American government to push Chennault's air power scheme.

Unfortunately, the adressing real issues in Nationalist China -- development of democratic or at least stable institutions, the rooting out of corruption in the Kuomintang, the training and deployment of useful Chinese infantry forces against Japan, improving the life of the ordinary villagers, etc. -- had no priority with the Generalissimo. Chennault's proposals seemed to offer such a promising way out.

The American government had its own problems, and couldn't scrape up the numbers of bombers envisioned. But keeping China in the war against Japan was understood to be in America's strategic interest (even before Pearl Harbor). What could be offered to Chiang was about 100 Curtis P-40 Warhawk fighter planes with volunteer military pilots to fly them. They fought with distinction, largely in the defense of Burma, and were absorbed into the United States Army Air Force's 23rd Fighter Group in July, 1942.

KEYWORDS: china; clairechennault; flyingtigers; freeperfoxhole; veterans; wwii
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The Lady's Story

These plans came together in July, 1941, when Chennault began to organize the American Volunteer Group (AVG). He acquired a chief of staff, Captain Harvey Greenlaw (who followed his boss's lead and promoted himself to Major), in Hong Kong in July, 1941. Along with Harvey came his beautiful wife, Olga Greenlaw, who kept the Group's War Diary and wrote about her experiences in The Lady and the Tigers. (The following paragraphs are based on her book. - ed.)

In August, 1941, the AVG started training in Toungoo, Burma, 175 miles north of Rangoon. Jack Newkirk, Sandy Sandell, John Armstrong, Red Probst, Oley Olson, Bob Little, Pete Atkinson, and other pilots were learning to fly Curtiss P-40's from a primitive airstrip. In these early days, they didn't have too much to do: flight training, drinking, fighting, and hunting. The lack of women (in the 1940's, read "white" women) was also a problem; Olga's personal role in alleviating that problem has been the subject of considerable gossip and speculation over the years.

May 1942, a handful of the legendary Flying Tigers stopped Japanese forces at the infamous Salween River Gorge. In a series of extremely hazardous missions, pilots of the AVG attacked Japanese columns on the Burma Road, and construction crews attempting to build a temporary bridge across the Salween Gorge.

The Flying Tigers were still training, they hadn't flown their first combat mission, when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor. As the Japanese threatened one Allied city after another, the British asked for a squadron of Flying Tigers to help defend Rangoon. Oley Olson's Third Squadron, "Hell's Angels," headed south, while the bulk of the AVG flew up to Kunming, to protect the terminus of the Burma Road. On December 20, the AVG engaged Japanese bombers for the first time, downing four and disrupting their bombing raid on Kunming. Over Burma, the Third Squadron also met with success, claiming six on the 23rd and ten on the 25th; before Jack Newkirk's Second Squadron relieved them.

In January, eight pilots of the First Sqn. flew to Burma to reinforce Newkirk, among them Greg Boyington, whom Olga described as "a frequent caller ... popping in at odd times for coffee or whatever." He returned to the AVG in Kunming in time to participate in a bomber escort mission on January 22. Chinese pilots, flying Russian-made SB-2's, attacked Hanoi. Sandy Sandell reported that the bombers' poor formation flying rendered both the escort and the bombing ineffective. "If we'd met any Japs, we'd have been dead pigeons."

By January 24, the Flying Tigers had claimed 73 Japanese planes, while losing 5 of their own. Japanese records indicate they had lost about one-third that many, mostly bombers. Olga's "dear, silly Sandy" and Boyington were soon rotated to Burma, where Newkirk's handful of weary Warhawks continued to punish the Japanese bombers. On February 7, Sandell was testing a P-40 with a repaired tail; it stalled and spun in, killing him on impact. The plane was destroyed so completely that only the right wheel and tail wheel were salvageable.

Through mid-February of 1942, the Japanese advances continued; Singapore fell and Rangoon became untenable. About this time, Generalissimo and Madame Chiang Kai Chek hosted a dinner in honor of the AVG. Olga's version of the speeches is replete with sentiments like, "Boys .. you are angels, with or without wings," and "the indomitable courage of the Chinese people," and "a bond of friendship and friendship which serves us well in the crucible of war, and will serve us equally well when vistory is ours." Oblivious to the speeches, the war, and particularly, the Japanese in Burma, pressed on. The AVG contingent (the Third Squadron replacing the First) pulled back to an airdrome at Magwe in early March. On the 9th, Rangoon finally fell. The Group held a funeral (for some officers killed in a CNAC plane crash), a wedding (for Daffy Davis and Doreen), and a birthday party (for Olga). One of the pilots, Tom Jones, gave her a .25 caliber Colt pistol.

When her work as squadron diarist, newspaper editor, and den mother/confidante overwhelmed her, she did what any proper lady of that era did. She checked herself into the hospital for a week's rest. While there, she heard about the raid on Chiang Mai, when Jack Newkirk was killed. The Chiang Mai raid, in which four Flying Tigers destroyed fifteen Japanese planes on the ground (3.75 apiece), was largely the basis of Boyington's claim to have destroyed six Japanese planes with the AVG. Also in late March, the AVG finally quit Burma, its forces on that front re-assembled at Loiwing, just over the Chinese border.

During the spring of 1942, Chennault struggled to keep the AVG the independent air force that it had been, reporting directly to Chiang Kai Chek. Pressure mounted to subsume the AVG into the Chinese Army under "Vinegar Joe" Stilwell or into the regular US Army Air Force. Casualties kept mounting - Tom Jones and Bob Little were killed. During a short trip to Delhi, India, Tex Hill and others speculated about their futures in the USAAF. At this point, it became clear that the AVG was going to disband, the 23rd Fighter Group, under Col. Robert L. Scott, would take over its responsibilities. Tex hoped for a major's commission.

In the end, only five AVG pilots joined the 23rd Fighter Group, while nineteen went to work for CNAC, the Chinese National Airlines. Many factors contributed to this. Some AVG pilots were former Marines and Navy fliers, who weren't necessarily interested in flying for the Army. Others, notably Boyington, has lousy disciplinary records, and the USAAF didn't offer them commissions. Like Tex Hill, many felt that their combat experience entitled them to higher ranks in the unblooded Army Air Force. Finally, the USAAF officer responsible for inducting the AVG men used very little tact and told them to sign up, on the Army's terms, or else go home and face the draft boards.

Olga and Harvey Greenlaw returned to the States, where Olga penned The Lady and the Tigers. Not long afterwards, their tempestuous marriage finally ended, Olga remarried and Harvey moved to Mexico.

Interestingly, Colonel Robert L. Scott, author of the best-selling God is my Co-Pilot, never was a Flying Tiger. He commanded its successor organization, the 23rd F.G., but never served with the American Volunteer Group.

Thus, while there can be no doubt about the courage, tenacity, and tactical successes of the Flying Tigers, nor about the useful role they played in boosting American morale at a critical point, strategically, they typified so much that was wrong with the Nationalist Chinese government and the American efforts to help the Chinese people.

During the 1930s, the United States took a position of neutrality in regard to foreign aggression. When a civil war erupted in Spain in 1936, many Americans formed volunteer corps which traveled to Europe to fight on the side of the Spanish Loyalists opposing the Fascist Nationalists under Generalissimo Francisco Franco. Meanwhile, armed conflict had erupted between China and Japan a year earlier in 1935. As this war progressed in Asia, volunteers once again became a focal point in the fight against armed aggression. The American Volunteer Group--popularly known as "the Flying Tigers"--assisted China in the attempt to repel the Japanese invaders. Long before Pearl Harbor and the United States' entry into World War II, Americans fought the Japanese in Southeast Asia.
1 posted on 03/14/2003 5:20:32 AM PST by SAMWolf
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To: SAMWolf
Love those airpower stories SAM!
2 posted on 03/14/2003 5:21:27 AM PST by CholeraJoe (Curtis Loew was the finest picker who ever played the Blues)
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To: MistyCA; AntiJen; Victoria Delsoul; SassyMom; bentfeather; GatorGirl; radu; souris; SpookBrat; ...
The story begins with General Claire Lee Chennault. Born on September 06, 1893, in Commerce, Texas, Chennault grew up on a small cotton farm near the town of Waterproof in Franklin Parish, Louisiana. A graduate of Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, he volunteered for the Army when the United States declared war on Germany in 1917. He applied for flight training school but was rejected. Instead, he was accepted for officer training and commissioned a 1st Lieutenant in the infantry reserve on October 27, 1917. Transferring to the Signal Corps, Chennault worked in an observation balloon section. His repeated applications for flight training were ignored until October of 1918. He was accepted into flight training school and graduated on April 09, 1919. However, by this time, World War I had ended.

General Claire Lee Chennault

Chennault served in the Army Air Corps throughout the next eighteen years. On February 25, 1937, the Air Corps Retirement Board recommended that he leave the service. Now age 43, Chennault had been offered a job training fighter pilots in China earlier in December of '36. As such, he retired on April 30, 1937, and sailed for China eight days later. The air war between China and Japan became more of an even match under his tutelage to the Chinese. Japanese bombers no longer assaulted targets beyond the range of their fighter escorts once Chennault's Chinese fighter pilots took to the air. But by the end of 1938, most of China's air force had been destroyed.

In August of 1941, the first recruits of the American Volunteer Corps, a group of trained and commissioned pilots recruited from the U.S. Armed Forces, arrived in Rangoon, Burma. These men were not serving in an official capacity for the United States. Rather, they had left the service and were--so far as international law was concerned--simply mercenaries and soldiers of fortune. This allowed the United States to maintain its state of neutrality. The AVG was equipped with P-40B Warhawk fighters. Chennault divided the group into three squadrons: 1st Pursuit Squadron (nicknamed the "Adams & Eves"), 2nd Pursuit Squadron (the "Panda Bears"), and 3rd Pursuit Squadron (the "Hell's Angels").

The 3rd Pursuit Squadron emblem: "Hells Angels"

The story of the origin of the AVG's nickname is somewhat varied. The Chinese Republic's national animal was the tiger. There was also the story that the shark's teeth painted on the nose of the planes represented the tiger shark, a creature deemed unlucky by Japanese fishermen. Some sources attributed the name as an homage to Chennault's old alma mater, LSU's "Fighting Tigers." The Chinese newspapers reportedly called the AVG the "Fei Hui," or "Flying Tigers," and the world press adopted it as a more colorful moniker than "American Volunteer Group." Whatever the case, Walt Disney studios designed the badge used by the group: a 'V' for Victory lying on its side with a winged tiger racing out of it. Of course, the AVG kept a tiger cub as a mascot along with a leopard.

A variation of the badge designed by Walt Disney studios for the Flying Tigers.

Chennault recognized the shortages of his unit in both pilots and aircraft. Pilots were only to engage the enemy on the most favorable terms. Dogfights were strictly forbidden. The P-40 could not out-turn a Japanese fighter. Instead, the tactic used was to gain altitude over the enemy and then dive, making a firing pass as they passed through the enemy formation and then continuing onward. Lighter Japanese planes could never accelerate fast enough to catch a Warhawk. Chennault's tactics of high speed hit-and-run paid off during a time when the AVG consistently faced and outfought a numerically superior enemy force.

A Chinese soldier guards a line of American P-40 fighter planes, painted with the shark-face emblem of the "Flying Tigers," at a flying field somewhere in China, cira 1942. Photo courtesy of National Archives.

In less than one year, the Flying Tigers claimed 299 kills of Japanese aircraft; impressive considering this was accomplished by some 60 pilots and nearly 200 ground crew. However, with Japan's surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, on December 07, 1941, the context of the war changed. The United States no longer needed to maintain neutrality. At midnight on July 04, 1942, the Flying Tigers were officially disbanded. Chennault returned to the Army Air Corps as a Brigadier General. Five pilots and 25 ground crew followed him back into the Air Corps into what became the 14th Air Force. The remaining members of the Tigers returned to their original branches of service.

In the United States, all of the 47 old planes would have been scrapped or sold immediately for salvage. All had been patched and repatched. Engine oil had been filtered and re-used until even the rugged Allison engines in the battered P-40s choked on it. Lack of plane tires was a serious problem.  The rocky Chinese air strips cut the four-ply tires to ribbons.  Many of the pilots went into combat with their tail-wheel tire casings stuffed with rags.

All of the P-40 engines were long overdue on major overhauls. Some engines had run-in air combat missions-as long as three hundred hours without adequate repair.

Throughout the sticky heat of the East China summer, Chennault's pilots and mechanics had worked and flown around the clock on occasion to keep the enemy off balance and the tiny force of planes in flying condition. Very few of the mechanics had coveralls. They worked in shorts and shoes to save their only change of clothing, blistered by the sun, chilled by the sudden cold rain storms. They worked from before sunrise until long after dark, by the light of kerosene lamp or hand flashlight, bitten raw by insects attracted by their lights.

"A Thousand Springs"
Ms. Anna Chennault.
3 posted on 03/14/2003 5:22:39 AM PST by SAMWolf (The French are cordially invited to come to Wisconsin and smell our dairy air)
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To: All
'Since the Flying Tigers first spread their wings in the skies above China, the enemy has learned to fear the intrepid spirit they have displayed in face of his superior numbers. They have become the symbol of the invincible strength of the forces now upholding the cause of justice and humanity. The Chinese people will preserve forever the memory of their glorious achievement.'

-- Generalissimo Chiang Kai-Shek

4 posted on 03/14/2003 5:23:04 AM PST by SAMWolf (The French are cordially invited to come to Wisconsin and smell our dairy air)
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To: All
The State of the Union is Strong!
Support the Commander in Chief

Click Here to Send a Message to the opposition!

5 posted on 03/14/2003 5:23:41 AM PST by SAMWolf (The French are cordially invited to come to Wisconsin and smell our dairy air)
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To: All

Thanks, Doughty!

6 posted on 03/14/2003 5:24:08 AM PST by SAMWolf (The French are cordially invited to come to Wisconsin and smell our dairy air)
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To: SAMWolf
Good Morning Everybody.

Chow time!
NG's and ER's to the front of the line.
Standing Operating Procedures state:
Click the Pics

Click here to Contribute to FR: Do It Now! ;-) Because Standing Child Hear

7 posted on 03/14/2003 5:24:26 AM PST by SAMWolf (The French are cordially invited to come to Wisconsin and smell our dairy air)
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To: CholeraJoe
WOW! You were quick today. Good Morning CholeraJoe.
8 posted on 03/14/2003 5:24:54 AM PST by SAMWolf (The French are cordially invited to come to Wisconsin and smell our dairy air)
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To: SAMWolf; All
Good Morning Sam, everyone.
9 posted on 03/14/2003 5:25:49 AM PST by Soaring Feather
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To: CholeraJoe; SAMWolf

Love those airpower stories SAM!

Me three.

10 posted on 03/14/2003 5:27:12 AM PST by Sparta (I like RINO hunting)
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To: SAMWolf
Good morning SAM.

11 posted on 03/14/2003 5:28:58 AM PST by Aquamarine
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To: bentfeather
Morning Feather.
12 posted on 03/14/2003 5:28:58 AM PST by SAMWolf (The French are cordially invited to come to Wisconsin and smell our dairy air)
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To: SAMWolf
Fellow Louisianian bump!!!

Recently, a P-40 was uncovered in a lake in China by the ChiComs and an expedition from the US. It's the only original Flying Tigers P-40 ever recovered.
13 posted on 03/14/2003 5:29:51 AM PST by Sparta (I like RINO hunting)
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To: Sparta; Aquamarine
Good morning.

Do you know what condition it was found in and what they plan to do with it?
14 posted on 03/14/2003 5:32:43 AM PST by SAMWolf (The French are cordially invited to come to Wisconsin and smell our dairy air)
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To: SAMWolf
They plan on restoring in putting it in a museum. I don't think it will be flying any time soon.

I couldn't Google anything on it. I just recalled hearing about it from the History Channel.
15 posted on 03/14/2003 5:37:13 AM PST by Sparta (I like RINO hunting)
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To: Sparta
I figured they'd just put it in a museum, wonder which one will get it.
16 posted on 03/14/2003 5:41:06 AM PST by SAMWolf (The French are cordially invited to come to Wisconsin and smell our dairy air)
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To: CholeraJoe
On This Day In History

Birthdates which occurred on March 14:
1623 Adam-Nicolas Gascon composer
1681 Georg Philipp Telemann Magdeburg Germany, late baroque composer
1692 Peter Musschenbroek Dutch physician/physicist (Leyden jar)
1726 Josef Antonin Stepan composer
1727 Johann Gottlieb Goldberg composer
1755 Pierre-Louis Couperin composer
1782 Thomas Hart Benton (Representative), "Old Bullion"
1795 Rubert Lucas Pearsall composer
1800 James Bogardus US inventor/builder (made cast-iron buildings)
1803 F G Klopstock writer
1804 Johann Strauss the Elder Viennese violinist/composer (Radetzky March)
1808 Catharinus Putnam Buckingham Brigadier General (Union volunteers)
1815 Josephine Lang composer
1816 Montgomery Dent Corse Alexandria VA, Brigadier General (Confederate Army), died in 1895
1820 Victor Emmanuel II King of Sardinia (1849-61)/Italy (1861-78)
1821 Jens Worsaae Denmark, archaeologist
1823 Roswell Sabine Ripley Brigadier General (Confederate Army), died in 1887
1826 William Fisk Sherwin composer
1829 Charles Charlesworth England (dies at 7 of old age)
1831 Leon Leopold Lewandoski composer
1833 John Sappington Marmaduke Major General (Confederate Army)
1833 Lucy Hobbs Taylor 1st US woman dentist (1866)
1835 Giovanni V Schiaparelli Italian astronomer (Mars)
1835 Manuel Fernandez Caballero composer
1837 Charles Ammi Cutter US librarian (Expansive classification/originated Cutter system)
1844 King Umberto I of Italy (1878-1900)
1847 Antonio de Castro Alves Brazilian poet (Espumas Flutuantes)
1854 Paul Ehrlich Germany, bacteriologist (Nobel-1908)
1854 Thomas Riley Marshall (D) 28th Vice President (1913-21)
1862 Vilhelm FK Bjerknes Norwegian/US physicist/meteorology
1864 [John] Casey Jones RR engineer (Ballad of Casey Jones)
1873 Joannes DJ Aengenent sociologist/bishop of Haarlem (1928-35)
1874 Anton F Philips president-director of Philips
1874 Mary Carr Philadelphia PA, actress (Forbidden Trail, Pack Up Your Troubles)
1875 Isadore Gilbert Mudge US, librarian/author/bibliographer (Thackeray Dictionary)
1875 Norman Houstoun O'Neill composer
1878 Carel T Scharten Dutch poet/writer (Forces of the Future)
1879 Albert Einstein Ulm Germany, (E=mc²/Theory of Relativity, Nobel 1921)
1880 Oscar (Bachigaloupi) Tourniaire actor/director (Pink Kate)
1883 Juan Manen composer
1884 Albert Egges van Giffen Dutch archaeologist
1884 Winter Haynes Watts composer
1887 George Creten Belgian sculptor/painter
1887 Lawrence Collingwood composer
1891 John P Strijbos Dutch writer (Wandering through South-Africa)
1892 Olive Netta Parsons co-founder (Collet's Bookshop)
1894 Josef Schelb composer
1895 Frans Ganshof Belgian historian
19-- Imhotep Gary Byrd radio personality (WLIB-NY)
19-- Tamara Tunie Bouquette Philadelphia PA, actress (Jessica-As the World Turns)
19-- Tim Rossovich Palo Alto CA, actor (When the Whistle Blows)
1903 Molla Mustafa Barzani Iran, Kurd leader (KDP)
1905 Raymond Aron French sociologist/political scientist
1906 Ulvi Cemal Erkin composer
1907 Björn-Erik Höijer Swedish writer (Nu dansar Sara)
1908 Maurice (Jean Jacques) Merleau-Ponty French philosopher
1908 Nikolay Petrovich Rakov composer
1909 André Pieyre de Mandiargues French writer (Margin)
1911 Pete Piute [Morris Kaufman], New York NY, comedian (Village Barn)
1912 Les Brown Reinerton PA, orchestra leader (& his band of renown)
1913 Witold Rudzinski composer
1914 Fiorenzo Marini Italy, épée (Olympics-gold-1960)
1914 Henry Ralph Carr soldier
1914 Jiri Reinberger composer
1915 Alexander Brott composer
1915 Carlos Surinach Barcelona Spain, composer (Monte Carlo)
1915 Kenneth Rowntree painter
1917 Macha Louis Rosenthal critic/poet
1918 Dennis Patrick Philadelphia PA, actor (Dear Dead Delilah, Dallas, Rituals)
1919 Luther Henderson Jr Kansas City MO, orchestra leader (Polly Bergen Show)
1919 Max Shulman novelist (Many Loves of Dobie Gillis, Tender Trap)
1920 Dorothy Tyler-Odam Great Britain, high jumper (Olympics-silver-1936, 1948)
1920 Hank Ketcham cartoonist (Dennis the Menace)
1921 Lis Hartel Denmark, equestrian dressage (Olympics-silver-1952, 56)
1922 Colin Fletcher author (Walking Through Time)
1922 Les Baxter US, singer/orchestra leader/composer (Born Again)
1923 Diane Arbus photographer/innovator
1925 John Barrington Wain England, novelist/poet (Hurry on Down)
1925 John Wain England, novelist/poet (Hurry on Down)
1926 François d'Assise Morel composer
1927 Bill Rexford auto racer
1927 Joop F Wolff Dutch editor (Truth)/Dutch politician (CPN)
1928 Frank Borman Gary IN, astronaut (Gemini 7, Apollo 8)/CEO-Eastern Airlines
1929 Thomas Bell Jr race horse trainer
1930 Dieter Schnebel German vicar/composer
1930 Ray Flockton cricketer (prolific New South Wales batsman of 50's)
1931 Bob Goalby golfer (British Open-1968, Canadian Open-1968, New Zealand-1970)
1931 Phil Phillips [Baptiste] rock vocalist (Sea Of Love)
1933 Michael Caine [Maurice J Micklewhite] Bermondsey London England, actor (Blame it on Rio, Alfie, Educating Rita)
1933 Quincy Jones Jr Chicago IL, jazz & R&B producer/composer/singer (We Are The World)
1934 Eugene A Cernan Chicago IL, Captain USN/astronaut (Gemini 9, Apollo 10 17)
1934 Shirley Scott swing/blues organist (with Stanley Turrentine)
1935 Jo van den Booren composer
1936 Bob Charles Carterton New Zealand, PGA golfer (1963 Houston Open)
1937 Peter van der Merwe cricketer (South African captain of mid-1960's)
1938 Johnny Gleeson cricketer (mystery spinner for Australia 1966-72)
1939 Bertrand Blier Paris France, novelist/director (Going Places)
1939 William Benjamin Lenoir Miami FL, astronaut (STS-5)
1940 Eleanor Bron Stanmore Middlesex England, actress (Women in Love, Bedazzled)
1941 Wolfgang Petersen Emden Germany, actor (Shattered, Enemy Mine)
1942 Jerry Jeff Walker Oneonta NY, country singer (Mr Bojangles)
1942 John Whittaker English real estate developer (Peel Holdings)
1942 Rita Tushingham Liverpool England, actress (Green Eyes, Doctor Zhivago)
1943 Jim Pons Santa Monica CA, bassist (Turtles-Happy Together)
1944 Clyde Lee NBAer
1944 Peter Paul Zahl writer
1945 Herman[us J] van Veen Netherlands, cabareter/singer/composer/writer
1945 Michael Martin Murphey Dallas TX, country singer (Wildfire)
1945 Walter Parazaider Chicago IL, rock saxophonist (Chicago-If You Leave Me Now)
1946 Jasper Carrott English comedian (Jane & the Lost City, Detectives)
1946 Steve Kanaly Burbank CA, actor (Fleshburn, Ray Krebbs-Dallas)
1946 Wes Unseld NBA all-star (Baltimore Bullets, MVP 1969)
1947 Billy Crystal Long Beach NY, comedian (Soap, Saturday Night Live, City Slickers)
1947 Jan [AJ] te Veldhuis Dutch MP (VVD)
1947 Janis Schmitt St Louis MO, playmate (February, 1978)
1947 Jimmy O'Rourke rocker
1947 William Jefferson (Representative-Democrat-LA)
1950 Michael Ford son of President Gerald & Betty Ford
1951 Rick Dees radio disc jock (KIIS Los Angeles)
1952 David Byrne guitarist/vocalist (Talking Heads-Burning Down the House)
1952 J Fred Muggs chimp (Today show)
1953 Tim McKee US, 400 meter medley swimmer (Olympics-silver-1972)
1954 Adrian Zmed Chicago IL, actor (TJ Hooker, Dance Fever)
1954 David La Croix race horse trainer
1954 Jann Browne country singer (Mexican Wind)
1955 Boon Gould rock guitarist (Level 42-Hot Water)
1956 Natalya Dmitriyevna Kuleshova Russia, cosmonaut
1956 Tessa Sanderson Kingston Jamaica, British javelin thrower (Olympics-gold-84)
1958 Albert Alexandre Louis Pierre Prince of Monaco/bobsledder (Olympics-1988)
1959 Patrick Dupond Paris France, dancer (La Bayadere)
1960 George Horvath Sweden, pentathlete (Olympics-1980)
1960 Helen Hopkins Donneybrook Australia, golfer (Australian International 1983)
1961 Gary Dell'Abate Uniondale Long Island New York, producer (Howard Stern Show, Private Parts)
1961 Grigoriy Kornev Russian speed walker (world record 5 km)
1961 Russell Todd actor (Jamie Frame-Another World)
1962 Kirby Puckett centerfielder (Minnesota Twins)
1963 Bruce Reid cricketer (brilliant left-arm Australia pace bowler 1985-92)
1963 Pedro Duque Madrid Spain, engineer/astronaut (STS 78 alternate, sk-95)
1964 Donald Evans NFL defensive end/tackle (New York Jets)
1964 Richard Migliore jockey
1965 John Stephenson cricketer (England opening bat in one Test vs Australia 1989)
1965 Kevin Brown Mcintyre GA, pitcher (Florida Marlins)
1966 Darcy Wakaluk Pincher Creek, NHL goalie (Dallas Stars)
1966 Tertius Bosch cricketer (South African pace bowler 1992)
1967 Edward M Fincke Pittsburgh PA, Captain USAF/astronaut
1967 Melissa Brennan Reeves Eatontown NJ, actress (Jennifer-Days of our Lives)
1967 Vijay Yadav cricketer (Indian wicket-keeper between More & Mongia)
1968 Megan Follows actress (Chase, Anne of Green Gables)
1969 Greg Biekert NFL linebacker (Oakland Raiders)
1969 Larry Johnson NBA forward (Charlotte Hornets, New York Knicks)
1969 Laura Leighton actress (Sydney-Melrose Place, The Other Woman)
1969 Ty[rel] Bennion Seattle WA, rower (Olympics-1996)
1970 Meredith Salenger actress (Dream a Little Dream, The Kiss)
1970 Thomas McLemore NFL tight end (Indianapolis Colts)
1971 Ernie Brown CFL defensive tackle (Calgary Stampeders)
1972 Antowain Smith running back (Buffalo Bills)
1972 Aris Brimanis Cleveland OH, NHL defenseman (Philadelphia Flyers)
1972 Clover Maitland Australian field hockey goal keeper (Olympics-96)
1972 Tom Barndt NFL/WLAF guard (Kansas City Chiefs, Scottish Claymores)
1973 Chris Sullivan defensive end (New England Patriots)
1974 Justine Joyce Australian rower (Olympics-96)
1976 Sarah Elizabeth Ulmer Auckland New Zealand, 3k independent pursuit cyclist (Olympics-96)
1982 Kate Maberly actress (Secret Garden)
1983 Jordan Taylor Hanson Tulsa OK, singer-Hanson (MMMBop)
1989 Oliver Bernsen son of Corbin Bernsen & Amanda Pays

Deaths which occurred on March 14:
0840 Eginhard French nobleman/biographer (Vita Karoli Magni), dies at 69
1272 Re Enzo Italian poet/son of Emp Frederik II von Hohenstaufen, dies
1298 Petrus Johannis Olivi South France theologist, dies
1490 Charles I Duke of Savoy, dies at 21
1559 Jacques d'Auchy Walloon baptist merchant, executed
1573 Claude II of Lotharingen, duke of Aumale/murdered Admiral Coligny, dies
1590 Philip van Egmont General/prince of Gavere, dies in battle at 30
1612 Philip Galle Flemish engraver, dies at about 74
1647 Frederik Hendrik count of Nassau/prince of Orange, dies at 63
1682 Jacob I van Ruysdael physician/landscape painter, dies at about 53
1757 John Byng English Admiral (Minorca), executed at 52
1760 Anton Filtz composer, dies at 26
1768 Vigilio Blasio Faitello composer, dies at 58
1801 Christian Friedrich Penzel composer, dies at 63
1803 Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock German poet, dies at 78
1811 August Henry Fitzroy English premier (1768-70), dies at 75
1861 Abraham Louis Niedermeyer composer, dies at 58
1883 Karl Marx German philosopher (Communist Manifesto), dies at 64
1899 Emile Erckmann French writer (Waterloo), dies at 76
1903 Johannes H Weissenbruch Dutch landscape painter, dies at 88
1925 Walter Camp father of American football, dies at 65
1932 George Eastman US industrialist (Kodak-camera), suicide at 77
1944 Pavel Grigor'yevich composer, dies at 66
1953 Klement Gottwald premier/President of Czechoslovakia, dies at 56
1954 Ludomir Michal Rogowski composer, dies at 72
1958 Eugeen Van de Velde Flemish musicologist/critic/composer, dies at 64
1961 Akiba Rubinstein Polish chess player (opening theorist), dies at 78
1968 Erwin Panofsky German/US art historian/iconologist, dies
1969 Ben Shahn US painter, dies at 70
1973 Murat B "Chic" Young US comic strip artist (Blondie), dies at 72
1975 Susan Hayward actress (Young & Willing), dies at 56
1976 Alberta Franklin silent screen actress, dies at 79
1976 Busby Berkeley US choreographer/director (Strike Up the Band), dies at 80
1976 Martha Saalfeldt writer, dies
1981 Ken Barrington cricketer (82 Tests for England, 6806 runs), dies
1981 René Clair French director (It Happened Tomorrow), dies at 82?
1982 Kirill Vladimirovich Molchanov composer, dies at 59
1983 Maurice Ronet actor (Circle of Love, Frantic, Sphinx), dies at 55
1984 Aurelio Peccei Italian businessman/CEO (Club Rome), dies at 75
1986 Benno Ammann composer, dies at 81
1986 Edith Atwater Chicago IL, actress (Phyllis-Love on a Rooftop), dies at 74
1986 Jozef Kresanek composer, dies at 73
1986 Marlin Perkins TV host (Wild Kingdom) at 80
1989 Edward Abbey (environmental author) dies after surgery at 62
1989 Zita Empress of Austria/Queen of Hungary, dies at 96
1991 Howard Ashman song writer (Under the Sea), dies of AIDs at 40
1991 Jef Houthuys Belgian union leader (ACV, 1968-87), dies at 68
1991 Jerome "Doc" Pomus lyricist (Save Last Dance for Me), dies at 65
1991 Robert Maroff dies at 57
1992 C V Wood Jr theme park developer (Disneyland), dies of cancer at 71
1992 Jean Poiret French actor/writer (La Cage aux Folles), dies at 65
1992 Ralph James actor (Orson-Mork & Mindy), dies at 67
1992 Steven Brian Pennell 1st execution in Delaware in 45 years, at 34
1994 Abdelkader Alloula Algerian playwright, murdered
1994 Sally Mary Caroline Belfrage writer, dies at 57
1995 Gerard Thomas Victory composer, dies at 73
1995 Johan W "Jo" van Marle CEO (KNVB, 1980-93), dies at 70
1995 William A Fowler US nuclear/astro-physicist (Nobel 1983), dies at 83
1996 Dewi Lorwerth Ellis Bebb rugby international/journalist, dies at 57
1996 Nico Kiasashvii professor of English Literature, dies at 69
1996 Vic Marshall chemist, dies at 74
1997 Fred Zinnemann (director) dies of heart attack at 89
1997 John Curtis Jr president/CEO (Luby's Cafe), commits suicide at 58

On this day...
1558 Ferdinand I appointed Holy Roman emperor
1559 Storm floods ravage Gorinchem, Dordrecht & Woudrichem, Netherlands
1590 Battle at Ivry: French King Henri IV beats Catholic League
1629 England granted a royal charter to Massachusetts Bay Colony
1644 England grants patent for Providence Plantations (now Rhode Island)
1653 Johan van Galen beats English fleet at Livorno
1689 Scotland dismisses Willem III & Mary Stuart as king & queen
1734 Prince Willem KHF van Orange marries George II's daughter Mary Anne
1743 1st American town meeting (Boston's Faneuil Hall)
1794 Eli Whitney patents the cotton gin
1800 Luigi Chiaramonti crowned Pope Pius VII
1812 Congress authorizes war bonds to finance War of 1812
1821 African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church founded (New York)
1826 General Congress of South American States assembles at Panamá
1836 HMS Beagle/Charles Darwin leaves Australia
1840 José Zorilla's "El Zapatero y el Rey" premieres in Madrid
1843 Boston conducts its 1st town meeting (Faneuil Hall)
1845 -5.3ºF (-20.7ºC) in Groningen
1862 Battle of New Bern NC: General Burnside conquers New Bern
1864 Rossini's "Petite Messe Solennelle" premieres in Paris France
1864 Union troops occupy Fort de Russy, Louisiana
1870 California legislature approves act making Golden Gate Park possible
1875 Smetana's "Vysehrad" premieres
1885 Gilbert & Sullivan's opera "Mikado" premieres in London
1888 2nd largest snowfall in New York NY history (21")
1889 August Strindberg's "Froken Julie" premieres in Copenhagen
1896 Sutro Baths (San Francisco) opens by Cliff House (closed Sept 1, 1952)
1899 Stanley Cup: Montréal Shamrocks beat Winnipeg Victorias, 6-2
1900 Hugo de Vries rediscovers Mendel's laws of genetics
1900 US currency goes on gold standard
1901 1st performance of Anton Bruckner's 6th Symphony in A
1903 1st national bird reservation established in Sebastian FL
1903 Stanley Cup: Ottawa Silver 7 sweep Rat Portage Thisles in 2 games
1903 WB Yeats & Lady Gregory's "Hour-glass" premieres in Dublin
1906 Calgary City Rugby Football Club forms
1908 Stanley Cup: Montréal Wanderers beat Toronto Trolley Leaguers, 6-4
1909 Amsterdam Social-Democratic Party (SDP) forms
1912 King Vittorio Emanuel III of Rome injured during assassination attempt
1913 John D Rockefeller gives $100 million to Rockefeller Foundation
1914 Serbia & Turkey sign peace treaty
1915 German cruiser Dresden blows itself up near coast of Chile
1916 Battle of Verdun: German attack on Mort-Homme ridge, West of Verdun
1918 1st concrete ship to cross the Atlantic (Faith) is launched, San Francisco
1922 KGU-AM in Honolulu HI begins radio transmissions
1922 KSD-AM in Saint Louis MO begins radio transmissions
1922 WGR-AM in Buffalo NY begins radio transmissions
1923 Allies accepts Vilnus taking East-Galicië in Poland
1923 German Supreme Court prohibits NSDAP
1923 President Warren G Harding became 1st President filing income tax report and pay taxes
1931 1st theater built for rear movie projection (New York NY)
1933 Civilian Conservation Corp, begins tree conservation
1933 Winston Churchill wants to boost air defense
1935 36-Folsom becomes 1st line to use 1-man streetcars
1936 Federal Register, 1st magazine of the US government, publishes 1st issue
1937 Battle of the Century: Fred Allen & Jack Benny meet on radio
1937 Pope Pius XI publishes anti-Nazi-encyclical Mit brennender Sorge
1939 England draw with South Africa at Durban on the 10th day
1939 Nazi Germany dissolves Republic of Czechoslovakia
1940 27 killed, 15 injured when truck full of migrant workers collides with a train outside McAllen TX
1941 Nazi occupiers of Holland forbid Jewish owned companies
1941 Xavier Cugat & his Orchestraestra record "Babalu"
1945 RAF bomb cuts railway link Hannover-Hamm
1946 Belgian government of Spaak, forms
1948 Freedom Train arrives in San Francisco
1950 FBI's "10 Most Wanted Fugitives" program begins
1951 During Korean War, US/UN forces recapture Seoul
1951 Earthquake at Euskirchen, Germany
1953 KOLR TV channel 10 in Springfield MO (CBS) begins broadcasting
1953 Nikita Khrushchev succeeds Malenkov as Secretary of Communist Party
1954 Braves Henry Aaron homers in his 1st exhibition game
1954 KDAL (now KDLH) TV channel 3 in Duluth-Superior MN (CBS) begins
1954 Louise Suggs wins LPGA Titleholders Golf Championship
1954 NBA Baltimore Bullets end a 32 game road losing streak
1955 Prince Mahemdra becomes king of Nepal
1956 Satchel Paige signs with the Birmingham Black Barons (Negro League)
1957 Indonesian government of Sastroamidjojo resigns
1958 RIAA (Recording Industry Association of American)is created and certifies 1st gold record (Perry Como's Catch A Falling Star)
1958 South Africa government disallows ANC
1958 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
1958 USSR performs atmospheric nuclear test
1960 14 die in a train crash in Bakersfield CA
1960 Wilt Chamberlain (Philadelphia) sets NBA playoff record of 53 points
1961 George Weiss becomes president of New York Mets
1962 Disarmament conference opens in Geneva without France
1962 Gordie Howe (Detroit Red Wings) is 2nd NHLer to score 500 goals
1963 San Francisco's Guy Rodgers ties NBA record with 28 assists
1964 "Girl Who Came to Supper" closes at Broadway NYC after 112 performances
1964 Dallas jury sentences Jack Ruby to death for Lee Harvey Oswald murder
1965 Israeli cabinet approves diplomatic relations with West Germany
1967 1st NFL-AFL common draft, Baltimore Colts pick Bubba Smith
1967 JFK's body moved from temporary grave to a permanent memorial
1968 CBS TV suspends Radio Free Europe free advertising because RFE doesn't make it clear it is sponsored by the CIA
1968 POM performs atmospheric nuclear test at Maralinga Australia
1969 Barbara Jo Rubin becomes 1st woman jockey to win at Aqueduct
1969 Seymour Nurse scores 258 in his last Test Cricket innings, West Indies vs New Zealand
1971 Barbra Streisand appears on "The Burt Bacharach Special" on CBS TV
1971 South Vietnamese troops flee Laos
1971 The Rolling Stones leave England for France to escape taxes
1972 NBA's Cincinnati Royals announce they are moving to Kansas City
1973 Liam Cosgrave appointed president of Ireland
1976 Jockey Bill Shoemaker wins his 7,000th race
1976 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
1978 Marines terminate Molukse action in Province house (1 dead)
1978 NFL permanently adds 7th official (side judge)
1980 3rd Emmy Sports Awards presentation
1980 Polish airliner crash kills all 87 aboard (22 are US amateur boxers)
1980 World Ice Dance Championship in Dortmund West Germany won by Krisztina Regoczy & Andras Sallay (Hungary)
1980 World Ice Pairs Figure Skating Championship in Dortmund won by Marina Cherkasova & Sergei Shakhrai (USSR)
1980 World Ladies Figure Skating Championship in Dortmund won by Anett Potzsch
1980 World Men's Figure Skating Championship in Dortmund won by Jan Hoffmann (German Democratic Republic)
1982 Sally Little wins LPGA Olympia Gold Golf Classic
1982 Sidath Wettimuny scores Sri Lanka's 1st Test Cricket century
1983 OPEC cut oil prices for 1st time in 23 years
1984 Challenger moves to Vandenberg AFB for mating of STS 41-C mission
1985 11th People's Choice Awards: Bill Cosby wins 4 awards
1985 Michael Secrest (US) completes 24 hour ride of 516 miles, 427 yards
1986 European Space Agency's Giotto flies by Halley's Comet (605 km)
1987 New York Met Darryl Strawberry charges Red Sox pitcher Al Nipper during spring training exhibition game, causes bench clearing brawl
1987 Providence, with Billy Donovan's 25 points, beats Austin Peay 90-87
1987 Skier Piotr Fijas jumps record 194 meter
1990 4th Soul Train Music Awards: Soul II Soul, Janet Jackson
1990 Mikhail S Gorbachev becomes president of the Soviet Congress
1991 British Court of Appeal frees "Birmingham 6" who had been unjustly sentenced in August 1975 to life imprisonment
1991 Emir of Kuwait returns to Kuwait City, after the Iraqis leave
1991 World Ice Dance Championship in Munich won by Isabel & Phil Duchesnay (France)
1991 World Ice Pairs Figure Skating Championship in Munich won by N Mishkutenok & A Dmitriev (USSR)
1991 World Ladies Figure Skating Championship in Munich won by Kristi Yamaguchi (USA)
1991 World Men's Figure Skating Championship in Munich won by Kurt Browning (Canada)
1992 Farm Aid V
1992 New York Mets Daryl Boston, Vince Coleman & Dwight Gooden accused of rape
1992 Soviet newspaper "Pravda" suspends publication
1993 "Conversations with My Father" closes at Royale NYC after 462 performances
1993 "Face Value" closes at Cort Theater NYC after performances
1993 "Saint Joan" closes at Lyceum Theater NYC after 49 performances
1993 3,000th performance of "Nunsense"
1993 Johan Koss skates world record 5 km (6 :6.57)
1993 Meg Mallon wins LPGA Ping/Welch's Golf Championship
1993 Ricky Ponting hits twin tons for Tasmania aged 18 years 84 days
1994 Mexican banker/billionaire Alfredo Harp Helu kidnapped
1994 Soyuz TM-21 launches with V Dezyurov, G Strekalov & N Thagard
1995 1st time 13 people in space
1996 Australia beat West Indies by 5 runs in amazing cricket World Cup semi
1996 Crufts show at NEC Birmingham, (1995 winner, Joshua, an Irish setter)
1997 68 year old Gordie Howe signs AHL contract with Syracuse Crunch
1997 Iranian military plane crashes, killing 80
1997 Olympics gold medalist Michael Johnson wins 67th James E Sullivan Award
1997 President Clinton trips & tears up his knee requiring surgery

Note: Some Holidays are only applicable on a given "day of the week"

Memphis TN : Cotton Carnival (held for 5 days) - - - - - ( Tuesday )
New Mexico : Arbor Day - - - - - ( Friday )

Religious Observances

Religious History
1559 French-born Swiss reformer John Calvin wrote in a letter: 'If your labors, where you now are, are sterile, and if here an abundant harvest awaits them, which is the most forcible tie? the one by which God draws you hither, or the one that detains you there?'
1908 Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary was chartered in Waco, Texas. Originally named Baylor Theological Seminary, the school campus relocated in 1910 to Fort Worth.
1912 Death of Albert L. Peace, 68. One of the noted Scottish organists of his day, Peace composed many cantatas, organ pieces and hymn tunes __ including the enduring ST. MARGARET, to which the Church today sings George Matheson's "O Love That Will Not Let Me Go."
1937 English Bible expositor Arthur W. Pink wrote in a letter: 'Neither the nearness nor the remoteness of Christ's return is a rule to regulate us in the ordering of our temporal affairs. Spiritual preparedness is the great matter.'
1961 The New Testament of the New English Bible was simultaneously published by both the Oxford and Cambridge University Presses. (The complete Old & New Testament of the NEB was published in 1970.)

Thought for the day :
" He who falls in love with himself will have no rivals. "
17 posted on 03/14/2003 6:20:45 AM PST by Valin (Age and deceit beat youth and skill)
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To: SAMWolf; Sparta; southerngrit
Ought to go to Chennault Field, wouldn't you think?

Or the Warbirds Museum at Falcon Field in Mesa, Arizona.
18 posted on 03/14/2003 6:28:12 AM PST by HiJinx (Butcher of Baghdad, soon-to-be unemployed, seeks oppressible nation...)
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