July 15, 1741 - Vitus Bering, a Danish mariner working for Russia, landed on the Alaskan coast.
July 15, 1806 - Zebulon Pike, the U.S. Army officer who in 1805 led an exploring party in search of the source of the Mississippi River, sets off with a new expedition to explore the American Southwest. Pike was instructed to seek out headwaters of the Arkansas and Red rivers and to investigate Spanish settlements in New Mexico. Pike and his men left Missouri and traveled through the present-day states of Kansas and Nebraska before reaching Colorado, where he spotted the famous mountain later named in his honor. From there, they traveled down to New Mexico, where they were stopped by Spanish officials and charged with illegal
July 15, 1830 - 3 Indian tribes, Sioux, Sak & Fox, signed a treaty giving the US most of Minnesota, Iowa & Missouri.
July 15, 1862 - U.S.S. Carondelet, Commander Walke, U.S.S. Tyler, Lieutenant Gwin, and ram Queen of the West, carrying Army sharp shooters on reconnaissance of the Yazoo River, engaged Confederate ironclad ram Arkansas, Lieutenant Isaac N. Brown. In a severe fight as Union ships withdrew, Arkansas partially disabled Carondelet and Tyler. Entering the Mississippi, Arkansas ran through fire from the Union fleet to refuge under the Vicksburg batteries in a heavily damaged condition and with many casualties. Farragut's fleet pursued Arkansas, but, as the Flag Officer reported, "it was so dark by the time we reached the town that
July 15, 1863 - Boat crews from U.S.S. Stars and Stripe and Somerset, under Lieutenant Commander Crosman, landed at Marsh's Island, Florida, and destroyed some 60 bushels of salt and 50 salt boilers.
July 15, 1863 - Batteries at Grimball's Landing on the Stone River, South Carolina, opened a heavy fire on U.S.S. Pawnee, Commander Balch, and U.S.S. Marblehead, Lieutenant Commander Scott while Confederate troops assaulted a Union position on James Island under command of Brigadier General Alfred H. Terry. Though Pawnee, struck some 40 times by the accurate shorefire, and Marblehead were compelled to drop downriver, they nonetheless provided important support for the Union troops and were instrumental in forcing the Confederates to break off the attack. Brigadier General Terry reported that the ships "opened a most effective
July 15, 1870 - Georgia became the last of the Confederate states to be readmitted to the Union.
July 15, 1870 - Act of Congress establishes Navy Pay Corps, which later becomes the Navy Supply Corps.
July 15, 1918 - The Second Battle of the Marne began during World War I. This is the last German offensive, up the Marne toward Epernay.
July 15, 1918 - When German forces cross the Marne River they cut off two companies from the 109th Infantry and two companies of the 110th Infantry, 28th Division, all from Pennsylvania. These four companies found themselves surrounded and fought off repeated German assaults, as they fought their way south with the survivors regaining the division’s positions in the afternoon. They inflicted crippling losses on the enemy, but also lost heavily themselves. Out of about 500 men in the two companies of the 109th only about 150 men regained the safety of the rest of the division.
July 15, 1941 - Master spy Juan Pujol Garcia, nicknamed "Garbo," sends his first communique to Germany from Britain. The question was: Who was he spying for? Juan Garcia, a Spaniard, ran an elaborate multiethnic spy network that included a Dutch airline steward, a British censor for the Ministry of Information, a Cabinet office clerk, a U.S. soldier in England, and a Welshman sympathetic to fascism. All were engaged in gathering secret information on the British-Allied war effort, which was then transmitted back to Berlin. Garcia was in the pay of the Nazis. The Germans knew him as "Arabel," whereas the English knew him as Ga
July 15, 1942 - The first supply flight from India to China over the 'Hump' was flown to help China's war effort.
July 15, 1942 - First photographic interpretation unit set up in the Pacific.
July 15, 1943 - General Patton forms a provisional corps to advance on the west of the island while US 2nd Corps (Bradley) drives northward. In Catania the Axis forces retreat behind the Simeto River.
July 15, 1943 - General Griswold replaces General Hester in command of operation in New Georgia. There is an air battle over Rendova in which the Americans lose 3 aircraft and claim to shoot down more than 40 Japanese planes.
July 15, 1943 - President Roosevelt creates a new office of economic warfare, headed by Leo Crowley. It replaces the previous board.
July 15, 1944 - Elements of the US 1st Army reach the outskirts of Lessay. From here to the Taute River, the advance is halted for regrouping. Heavy fighting takes place near St. Lo.
July 15, 1944 - US 5th Army advances toward Leghorn. The French Expeditionary Corps capture Castellina.
July 15, 1944 - Greenwich Observatory was damaged by German V1 rocket.
July 15, 1945 - The West End lights up again, ending over 2000 days of blackout and dim-out.
July 15, 1945 - American naval vessels bombard Muroran, the second biggest steel center in Japan, lying in Volcano Bay on the east side of the island of Hokkaido. Three battleships bombarded the Muroran and some 1000 carrier planes bombed the cities of Hakodati, Otaru, Abashiri, Kushiro, Asahigawa and Obihiro, all on Hokkaido.
July 15, 1945 - American B-29 Superfortress bombers, based in the Marianna Islands, raided an oil refinery at Kudamatsu on Honshu Island while fighters and bombers from Okinawa attacked objectives on Kyushu and southern Honshu.
July 15, 1948 - John J. Pershing (87), [Black Jack], US general (Mexico, WW I), died.
July 15, 1950 - The North Koreans penetrated the U.S. 24th Infantry Division's defense and crossed the Kum River. The 19th Infantry Regiment lost 20 percent of its fighting force, the 1st Battalion alone losing 338 out of 785. The 63rd Field Artillery Battalion was overrun and sustained heavy casualties.
July 15, 1950 - F-80s accounted for 85 percent of the enemy's losses to air attack. Far East Air Forces Commander, Lieutenant General George E. Stratemeyer, stated that he wouldn't trade the F-80 for all the F-47s and F-51s he could get. "It does a wonderful job in ground support and can take care of the top-side job if enemy jets appear."
July 15, 1950 - Republic of Korea President Syngman Rhee transferred operational control of the ROK Army to the United Nations Command.
July 15, 1953 - U.S. Air Force Captain James Jabara, 4th Fighter-Interceptor Wing, qualified as the second and last "triple ace" of the war -- 15 kills. He also was the second ranking jet ace of the war.
July 15, 1958 - President Eisenhower ordered 5,000 U.S. Marines to Lebanon, at the request of that country's president, Camille Chamoun, in the face of a perceived threat by Muslim rebels; to help end a short-lived civil war.
July 15, 1965 - The unmanned spacecraft Mariner 4 passes over Mars at an altitude of 6,000 feet and sends back to Earth the first close-up images of the red planet. Launched in November 1964, Mariner 4 carried a television camera and six other science instruments to study Mars and interplanetary space within the solar system. Reaching Mars on July 14, 1965, the spacecraft began sending back television images of the planet just after midnight on July 15. The pictures--nearly 22 in all--revealed a vast, barren wasteland of craters and rust-colored sand, dismissing 19th-century suspicions that an advanced civilization might exis
July 15, 1968 - Intel was founded. Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore had left Fairchild Semiconductor to form NM Electronics in Mountain View, Ca. In 1997 Tim Jackson published "Inside Intel: Andrew Grove and the Rise of the World’s Most Powerful Chip Company." Grove joined Intel in this year and became its president in 1979. They bought the rights to the name Intel from Intelco fro $15,000.
July 15, 1971 - In a surprise announcement, President Richard Nixon says that he will visit Beijing, China, before May 1972. The news, issued simultaneously in Beijing and the United States, stunned the world. Nixon reported that he was visiting in order "to seek normalization of relations between the two countries and to exchange views on questions of concern to both sides." Privately, Nixon hoped that achieving a rapprochement with China, North Vietnam's major benefactor, would convince Hanoi to negotiate a peaceful settlement to the Vietnam War. The announcement was preceded by an April 6 invitation for the U.S. Table Tenn
July 15, 1972 - CGC Absecon was decommissioned and transferred to the South Vietnamese Navy. This was the last of the seven 311-foot Casco-class cutters to be transferred to the South Vietnamese. She was commissioned as the Tham Ngu Lao (HQ-15) on 15 July 1972. She was seized by the North Vietnamese when the South fell in 1975. The North Vietnamese gave her the hull number HQ-1 but did not apparently name her. She was refitted with two or possibly four SS-N-2 launchers.
July 15, 1975 - Three American astronauts blasted off aboard an Apollo spaceship hours after two Soviet cosmonauts were launched aboard a Soyuz spacecraft for a mission that included a linkup of the two ships in orbit.
July 15, 1987 - Former National Security Adviser John Poindexter testified at the Iran-Contra hearings that he had never told President Reagan about using Iranian arms sales money for the Contras in order to protect the president from possible political embarrassment.
July 15, 1990 - Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev and visiting West German Chancellor Helmut Kohl held talks on the issue of a united Germany’s membership in NATO.
July 15, 1993 - Authorities in Los Angeles announced eight arrests in connection with an alleged plot by white supremacists to ignite a race war by bombing a black church and killing prominent black Americans. Christopher Fisher, leader of the Fourth Reich Skinheads, was later sentenced to more than 8 years in federal prison while defendant Carl Daniel Boese was sentenced to nearly 5 years in prison; both had pleaded guilty to arson and conspiracy charges.
July 15, 1998 - Direct flights between the US and Cuba resumed after 2 years. US authorities expanded a "security zone" to include most of the Florida coast to prevent anti-Castro protestors from entering Cuban waters.
July 15, 1998 - Richard Butler, chief of UNSCOM, ordered Scott Ritter in mid-July to place a listening device in UNSCOM headquarters.
July 15, 1998 - Iraq and Syria sign an agreement to build a second oil pipeline between the two countries. No information is available on the new line's capacity or the route it will take; however, U.S. State Department spokesman James P. Rubin states that implementation of the agreement would be a violation of United Nations sanctions against Iraq.
July 15, 1998 - The Pentagon ramped up its efforts to scuttle Lockheed Martin’s slated mega-merger with fellow defense giant Northrop Grumman. In particular, the administration announced plans to bring Lockheed to court on anti-trust charges. The Pentagon’s hardball play came a few months after it had first announced its opposition to the proposed $10.7 billion deal. During the intervening time, the government had attempted to work with both Lockheed and Northrop to make their union more palatable. But, despite Lockheed’s willingness to divest nearly $1 billion in assets, the Pentagon still felt that the merger would staunch
July 15, 2000 - Iran test-fired an upgraded version of its 800-mile range, Shabab-3 missile.
July 15, 2002 - John Walker Lindh agreed to serve 20 years in prison for fighting in Afghanistan in a plea bargain with the government. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison on Oct 4.
July 15, 2002 - A federal agency approved Navy plans for a sonar system to search out enemy submarines despite potential injury to whales and dolphins.
July 15, 2002 - Osama bin Laden is alive and planning another attack on the United States, said an Arab journalist with close ties to the militant's associates. This ‘new’ attack has not yet materialized.
July 15, 2002 - A court in Pakistan sentenced British-born Islamic militant Sheikh Ahmed Omar Saeed to death for the kidnap and murder of U.S. reporter Daniel Pearl, drawing a threat of reprisals and calls for Muslims to respond. A Pakistani judge convicted four Islamic militants in the kidnap-slaying of Wall Street Journal correspondent Daniel Pearl.
July 15, 2003 - Four US crew members were killed in a fiery crash of a Navy helicopter in Italy.
July 15, 2004 - In Iraq attackers detonated a car bomb near police and government buildings in the western city of Haditha, killing 10 people. PM Alawi announced the formation of a new national security agency to fight the insurgency.