October 11th, 1939UNITED KINGDOM:
Scotland: A Pacifist candidate draws 1,060 votes at the Clackmannan and East Stirling by-election.
Westminster: The war secretary, Leslie Hore-Belisha, says 158,000 BEF troops are now in France.
U.S. freighter SS Sundance is detained at London by British authorities; freighter SS Black Tern is detained at Weymouth; and freighter Black Gull, which has been detained by the British since 6 October, is released. (Jack McKillop)
Corvette HMS Clematis laid down.
Edouard Daladier today formally rejected Hitler's peace proposals. Thus a man who
won the Croix de Guerre and the Legion d'Honneur in the Great War becomes his country's
leader in what is now being called the Second World War.
Short and broad, Daladier exudes determination and courage. He has been called a Jacobin, with a passion for national defence. He was born in Carpentras in 1884 and entered national politics after the war when he was elected to the Chamber of Deputies as a Radical Socialist. He later became a minister in six different governments before becoming Prime Minister for the first time on the same day that Hitler became Chancellor in 1933.
Berlin: A false radio report of the British government's fall and declaration of an armistice leads to open rejoicing.
The rest of the field army is called for 'extraordinary manoeuvres'. The Defence Forces are now being fully mobilized. The Finnish negotiator Juho Paasikivi, together with the military expert Colonel Aladar Paasonen, arrive at Moscow. (Mikko Härmeinen)
CANADA: Examination vessel HMCS Andree Dupre commissioned in Halifax. 285GRT/96nrt 5.0x23.7x12.8ft T3cy 12¾"21½"35"x24" 62nhp 500ihp 11k by Beauchemin and Cie, Sorel Province of Quebec, completed by The Transportation and Shipping Co Ltd, Sorel, Province of Quebec, renamed Naploeon L.; registered 1921 #138460 Napoleon L.; 1926 sold to The Sincennes McNaughton Line Ltd, Montreal, Province of Quebec, renamed Andree Dupre; 1928 transferred to Sin-Mac Lines Ltd, Montreal, Province of Quebec; 1934 transferred to Sincennes McNaughton Tugs Ltd, Montreal, Province of Quebec; 1935 sold to Manseau Shipyards Ltd, Sorel, Province of Quebec; 1937 sold to Marine Industries Ltd, Montreal, Province of Quebec; 1940-45 WW.II RCN as HMCS Andree Dupre Examination Vessel; 1945 sold to France renamed Remorqueur 16, of Port Autonome de Bordeaux; renamed 1956 Remorqueur 18.
Gate vessel HMCS Viernoe. Former fishing Vessel Viernoe #137002, of The National Sea C/S "VGNW". Built Selby, UK. Launched 1914, 273 tons, 130.3x22x12.5ft, 9kts, crew 4/28, 1-12pdr. Ex-WW I HMS Viernoe. Post WW.II, sold mercantile service, broken up 1954. (Dave Shirlaw)
Patrol vessel HMCS MacDonald commissioned. Assigned duty with RCAF. Built by Morton Engineering and Drydock Ltd. Quebec City, Province of Quebec. 210/36, 113x21x10.3ft, 10kts, twin screw, diesel, crew 4/23, 1-12pdr, 1-.303mg. Ex-RCMP, C/S "CGPF" Post WW.II, 1946 to Dept of Fisheries, renamed Howay, sold 1956, last noted 2001 owned by John Pelletreau of the ARSBC, used as a houseboat in Vancouver, British Columbia. (Dave Shirlaw)
Washington: President Roosevelt today ordered American scientists to investigate the feasibility of building an "atomic bomb". A group of refugee European scientists is concerned that its German colleagues might use atomic energy to provide Hitler with a weapon with unimagined destructive power. It was Albert Einstein who persuaded a banker friend of Roosevelt, Alexander Sachs, to warn the US president of the possibility of an atomic bomb. "What you're after", the president said, "is to see the Nazis don't blow us up." Then he called an aide and said: "This requires action."
Passenger liner SS Iroquois arrives safely in New York City from Cobh, Eire, with 566 passengers, having been accompanied for three days by Coast Guard cutter USCGC Campbell and destroyers USS Davis (DD-395) and USS Benham (DD-397) after the Germans had indicated it might be sunk (see 4 October). SS Iroquois is acquired by the USN on 22 July 1940, is converted to a hospital ship and commissioned as USS Solace (AH-5) on 9 August 1941. The ship is in Pearl Harbor when the Japanese attack on 7 December 1941.
The American Federation of Labor (AFL) declares its opposition to U.S. involvement in World War II. This stance is in line with the thinking of the majority of Americans and to show its impartiality, the union chooses to begin a boycott of German, Japanese and Russian goods.
Jazz great Coleman Hawkins records the jazz classic "Body and Soul", for Bluebird Records. (Jack McKillop)
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