On This Date: August 2015


AUGUST 1, 1990
Iraq invades Kuwait. Canada sends a naval task group.

AUGUST 2, 1914
Germany invades Luxembourg, has mobilized 1.5 million men.

Ernest “Smokey” Smith, VC [Sharif Tarabay]

Ernest “Smokey” Smith, VC
Sharif Tarabay

AUGUST 3, 2005
Canada’s last surviving Victoria Cross recipient, Ernest “Smokey” Smith, VC, dies.

AUGUST 4, 1914
Britain declares war against Germany.

AUGUST 5, 1914
The government announces purchase of two submarines to aid HMCS Rainbow in the Pacific.

AUGUST 6, 2008
HMCS Ville de Québec assigned to the World Food Program, escorts more than 36 million kilograms of food to Somalia.

AUGUST 7, 1941
Canada’s first artillery success in downing enemy aircraft is credited to the 3rd Light Anti-Aircraft Regiment near Frinton, England.

AUGUST 8, 1974
Scandal-plagued U.S. President Richard Nixon announces he will resign.

Robert Hampton Gray, VC [Sharif Tarabay]

Robert Hampton Gray, VC
Sharif Tarabay

AUGUST 9, 1945
Lieut. Robert Hampton Gray sinks a Japanese destroyer and is posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross.

AUGUST 10, 1914
Canada orders 65,000 pairs of boots, 35,000 caps, 15,000 greatcoats, 40,000 jackets, 33,000 pairs of puttees and 150,000 pairs of socks.

AUGUST 11, 1718
Sir Frederick Haldimand is born. As governor of Quebec, he resettles United Empire Loyalists and Six Nations of Iroquois safely in Canada following the American Revolution.

AUGUST 12, 1961
Cold War animosity deepens with construction of the Berlin Wall, aimed at halting defections to the West.

AUGUST 13, 1814
The British fire on Fort Erie, beginning a protracted siege.

AUGUST 14, 1941
The U.S. and Britain sign the Atlantic Charter, setting out postwar aims.

AUGUST 15, 1948
The Republic of Korea (South Korea) is established; the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) follows three weeks later.

Harry Brown, VC [Sharif Tarabay]

Harry Brown, VC
Sharif Tarabay

AUGUST 16, 1917
Despite all odds, Private Harry Brown, VC, delivers a vital message regarding enemy movement on Hill 70. He dies hours later.

Sgt. H.E. Cooper, 48th Highlanders of Canada, Sicily, 1943. [LAC/PA-130215]

Sgt. H.E. Cooper, 48th Highlanders of Canada, Sicily, 1943.

AUGUST 17, 1943
Sicily is conquered; Canada incurs 2,310 casualties, including 562 killed.

AUGUST 18, 1944
HMC ships Ottawa, Kootenay and Chaudière sink U-621 in the Bay of Biscay.

AUGUST 19, 1812
Off Nova Scotia’s coast, British shot bounces off U.S. frigate Constitution, earning it the nickname Old Ironsides.

AUGUST 20, 1968
The Cold War heats up as Warsaw Pact troops occupy Czechoslovakia and crush anti-Soviet protests.

Falaise, 1944 [LAC/PA-135908]

Falaise, 1944

AUGUST 21, 1944
The Falaise Gap, a German escape corridor, is closed.

Filip Konowal, VC [Sharif Tarabay]

Filip Konowal, VC
Sharif Tarabay

AUGUST 22, 1917
Filip Konowal earns the Victoria Cross in the Battle of Lens by attacking and capturing enemy machine-guns.

AUGUST 23, 1903
Geological Survey of Canada explorer A.P. Low leads expedition to map Arctic islands and assert sovereignty.

AUGUST 24, 1990
HMC ships Athabaskan, Protecteur and Terra Nova leave for the Persian Gulf War.

AUGUST 25, 1944
Paris is liberated after more than four years of Nazi occupation.

AUGUST 26, 1918
In the Battle of the Scarpe, Lieutenant Charles Rutherford personally captures 45 enemies and three machine-guns by persuading them they are surrounded.

AUGUST 27, 1979
The Irish Republican Army assassinates British war hero Lord Louis Mountbatten.

AUGUST 28, 1963
“I Have a Dream,” Martin Luther King tells 200,000 who march on the U.S. Capitol in support of African American rights.

AUGUST 29, 1917
A mob of 5,000 starts a two-day riot in Montreal in protest of conscription.

AUGUST 30, 1956
An RCAF fighter aircraft shaves 90 minutes from coast-to-coast flight; new record: 5 hours.

AUGUST 31, 1946
The Women’s Royal Canadian Naval Service is disbanded.

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