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This Day in WWII 19 July 1940 - 1944


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FirestoneAd-July1943.jpg Firestone Ad - July 1943

1940: General Sir Alan Brooke takes over from Ironside as C-in-C, Home Forces. Ironside becomes a Field Marshal.

1940: Hitler makes triumphant speech to Reichstag: accuses Allies of war mongering and appeals 'for the last time to reason'.

Betty%20Grable1.jpg *Betty Grable

1940: The Italian Cruiser, Bartolomeo Colleoni is sunk off Cape Spada, near Crete by HMAS Sydney.

1941: BBC announces the 'V Army', the resistance movement in Occupied Europe.

Betty%20Grable2.jpg Betty Grable

1941: George Armstrong executed at Wandsworth prison for spying. (LEARN MORE)

1941: Hitler issues Directive No.33. This states that Moscow is no longer the priority, but that once the Smolensk pocket has been reduced, then Army Group Centre is to hand over Panzer Group 3 to Army Group North and Panzer Group 2 to Army Group South. This will enable the flanks to be secured by capturing Leningrad in the North and overrunning the Ukraine in the South.

Betty%20Grable3.jpg Betty Grable

1942: German U-boats are withdrawn from positions off the U.S. Atlantic coast due to effective American anti-submarine countermeasures.

1942: Himmler orders Operation Reinhard, mass deportations of Jews in Poland to extermination camps.

Betty%20Grable4.jpg Betty Grable

1942: Japanese invasion fleet leaves Rabaul for Buna, New Guinea.

1943: USAAF planes bomb Rome for the first time, using carefully drawn maps in an attempt to avoid hitting the city's numerous historic churches. The effort is deemed nearly perfect; only one church is damaged, Basilica at San Lorenzo.

Betty%20Grable5.jpg Betty Grable

1944: The British 3rd Division is repulsed from Emiville four times as the Canadians clear the southern suburbs of Caen. The British 11th Armoured Division takes Bras and Hubert-Follie.

1944: The U.S. 34th Division captures Livorno on the Italian coast.

Betty%20Grable6.jpg Betty Grable

1944: The Russians claim to have crossed into Latvia.

1944: U.S. Marines invade Guam in the Marianas.

1945: In the largest B-29 bomb raid to date, 600 of the heavy bombers drop 4,000 tons of munitions on Japanese cities, including Choshi, Fukui, Hitachi, and Okazaki.

Betty%20Grable7.jpg Betty Grable

*Elizabeth Ruth Grable was born on December 18, 1916, in St. Louis, Missouri. Her mother Lillian was a stubborn and materialistic woman who was determined to make her daughter a star. Elizabeth, who later became Betty, was enrolled in Clark's Dancing School at the age of three. With her mother's guidance, Betty studied ballet and tap dancing. At 13, Betty and her mother set out for Hollywood with the hopes of stardom. Lillian lied about her daughter's age, and Ruth landed several minor parts in films in 1930, such as "Whoopee!" (1930), "New Movietone Follies of 1930" (1930), "Happy Days" (1929/I) and "Let's Go Places" (1930). In 1932 she signed with RKO Pictures. The bit parts continued for the next three years. Betty finally landed a substantial part in "By Your Leave" (1934). One of her big roles was in "College Swing" (1938). Unfortunately, the public didn't seem to take notice. She was beginning to think she was a failure. The next year she married former child star Jackie Coogan. His success boosted hers, but they divorced in 1940. When she landed the role of Glenda Crawford in "Down Argentine Way" (1940), the public finally took notice of this shining bright star. Stardom came through comedies such as "Coney Island" (1943) and "Sweet Rosie O'Grady" (1943).

The public was enchanted with Betty. Her famous pin-up pose during World War II adorned barracks all around the world. With that pin-up and as the star of lavish musicals, Betty became the highest-paid star in Hollywood. After the war, her star continued to rise. In 1947 the US Treasury Department noted that she was the highest paid star in America, earning about $300,000 a year - a phenomenal sum even by today's standards. Later, 20th Century-Fox, who had her under contract, insured her legs with Lloyds of London for a million dollars. Betty continued to be popular until the mid-50s, when musicals went into a decline. Her last film was "How to Be Very, Very Popular" (1955). She then concentrated on Broadway and nightclubs. In 1965 she divorced band leader Harry James, whom she had wed in 1943. Betty died July 2, 1973, of lung cancer at age 56 in Santa Monica, California. Her funeral was held July 5, 1973, 30 years to the day after her marriage to Harry James who, in turn, died on what would have been his and Grable's 40th anniversary, July 5, 1983. Her life was an active one, devoid of the scandals that plagued many stars in one way or another. In reality, she cared for her family and the family life more than stardom. In that way, she was a true star.'


Measurements: 34 1/2-24-36 (self-described 1940), 36-24-35 (at time of her famous WWII pin-up poster), 36-23-35 (at a fit in 1958), (Source: Celebrity Sleuth magazine)

Height: 5' 4" (1.63 m)

Wore size 5A shoes. (Source: Celebrity Sleuth magazine)

Had a relationship with George Raft for 2-1/2 years, and ended it because he could not get a divorce from his Catholic wife.

Was a somnambulist (sleep-walker)

Did Playtex 18-hour Shortie commercials in the 1960s using her famous pinup pose -- purportedly because she needed the money after her husband had spent her savings.

She and Harry James had two daughters, Victoria Elizabeth James (b. March 3, 1944) and Jessica James (b. May 20, 1947).

FirestoneAd-July1944.jpg Firestone Ad - July 1944

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So nothing of importance happened on this date in 1945? Let's see.... oh!

July 19, 1945: Montgomery Ward is seized by United States Army troops at the direction of Attorney General Francis Biddle because of its refusal to obey National War Labor Board orders. Montgomery Ward chairman Seward Avery is carried out of his office by troops.

July 19, 1945: In the largest B-29 bomb raid to date, 600 of the heavy bombers drop 4,000 tons of munitions on Japanese cities, including Choshi, Fukui, Hitachi, and Okazaki.

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After checking my post researching from years ago I found this...

In one of the odder moments of Chicago wartime life, Montgomery Ward chairman Sewell Avery was carried out of his office in April 1944, when he balked at an order from the War Labor Board.

I have this posted here.

I will edit and add the B-29 bombing raid to the post. Thanks Stans.

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