October 1933

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October 17, 1933: Albert Einstein moves to the United States
October 16, 1933: Esquire, "the magazine for men", debuts
October 12, 1933: John Dillinger's gang breaks him out of jail

The following events occurred in October 1933:

October 1, 1933 (Sunday)[edit]

  • Thirty-three people were killed in the capsizing of the Japanese sightseeing boat Koun Maru off of the coast of the Kumamoto Prefecture.[1]
  • At the recommendation of the Nazi government, all patriotic Germans were expected to set aside the first Sunday of each month as an Eintopfsonntag (literally, a "one-pot Sunday"), with families to have a simple meal rather than a more expensive Sunday meal, and to contribute the difference to the Winterhilfswerk fund.[2]
  • Died: Te Rata Mahuta, 56, the fourth King of the Māori people in New Zealand[3]

October 2, 1933 (Monday)[edit]

October 3, 1933 (Tuesday)[edit]

  • A failed assassination attempt against Engelbert Dollfuss seriously injured him.[5]
  • A fire in Griffith Park in Los Angeles trapped more than 50 people employed by a Los Angeles County relief project.[6]
  • Cuban President Ramón Grau narrowly escaped assassination.[7]
  • Died:

October 4, 1933 (Wednesday)[edit]

  • The Schriftleitergesetz (Editorial Control Law) took effect in Germany, placing the press under the control of the government. All newspaper and magazine editors had to be members of the new "Reich League of the German Press", which banned non-Aryans as well as people married to non-Aryans.[8]

October 5, 1933 (Thursday)[edit]

  • A group of 1,000 delegates to the annual British Labour Party congress in Hastings opened their session with a moment of silence in memory of fellow workers in Germany who had lost their lives to Nazi oppression. The conference then unanimously passed two resolutions, one condemning Fascism and the other pledging to boycott goods manufactured in Germany as well as calling upon the League of Nations to protect Jews and other racial minorities in Germany.[9]
  • Born: Billy Lee Riley, American country musician, in Pocahontas, Arkansas (d. 2009)
  • Died:
    • Nikolai Yudenich, 71, former Russian general who led the Menshevik "White Army" against the Bolsheviks in the Russian Civil War
    • Renée Adorée (Jeanne de la Fonte), 35, French film actress, of tuberculosis
    • Harry G. Cooper, 69, a/k/a "Railroad Jack", college graduate turned hobo.[10]

October 6, 1933 (Friday)[edit]

  • UK Lord President of the Council Stanley Baldwin made a key speech on the subject of disarmament to a meeting of the Conservative Party in Birmingham. Baldwin spoke of the need for a disarmament convention, explaining, "I mean a limitation of armaments, a real limitation, such a one that if we, by the many gestures we have made of disarmament, find ourselves on some lower rating than the figures in such a convention, and some other country has higher figures, that country has to come down and we go up until we meet. No other form of convention would be negotiated by the Government; no other form of convention is in contemplation ... I would only add this: If that convention be signed, the nation that breaks it will have no friend in this civilised world."[11][12]
  • The Prussian Ministry of Justice issued a memorandum advocating euthanasia for persons afflicted with incurable diseases, under three conditions: the afflicted person demand that his misery be ended, two official doctors must certify that the person have an incurable ailment, and that a qualified physician administer the fatal drug.[13]
  • The musical romantic comedy film I'm No Angel starring Mae West was released.
  • Died: Wallace Rider Farrington, 62, Territorial Governor of Hawaii from 1921 to 1929

October 7, 1933 (Saturday)[edit]

October 8, 1933 (Sunday)[edit]

October 9, 1933 (Monday)[edit]

  • Spanish President Zamora dissolved the Cortes Generales and called new elections for November 19.[17]
  • Born:
    • Peter Mansfield, British physicist, and 2003 recipient of the Nobel Prize for his development of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), in Lambeth (d. 2017)
    • Joan Berger, American female professional baseball player AAGPBL Rookie of the Year in 1952, in Passaic, New Jersey
  • Died: Gus Winkler, 32, American gangster, in a shooting

October 10, 1933 (Tuesday)[edit]

October 11, 1933 (Wednesday)[edit]

  • The United States, United Kingdom and France agreed at Geneva that Germany's request for expansion of defensive armament should not be granted.[22]
  • The "International Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Women of Full Age" was signed in Geneva. It would enter into force on August 24, 1934 and be superseded by another convention on March 21, 1950.[23]

October 12, 1933 (Thursday)[edit]

  • Three members of John Dillinger's gang— Harry Pierpont, Russell Clark and Charles Makley— invaded the city jail in Lima, Ohio and freed him, killing Sheriff Jesse Sarber in the process.[24][25] [26]
  • U.S. Attorney General Homer Cummings announced that the Department of Justice would acquire the U.S. Army Disciplinary Barracks on California's Alcatraz Island, for the construction of the most secure federal penitentiary up to that time. Cummings told reporters, "Here may be isolated the criminals of the vicious and irredeemable type, so that their evil influence may not be extended to other prisoners who are disposed to rehabilitate themselves." Transfer took place the next day.[27] The first inmates would arrive at Alcatraz Island in 1934.

October 13, 1933 (Friday)[edit]

  • Thirty workers were killed in the explosion of a fireworks factory at Visakhapatnam in India.[28]
  • President Roosevelt gave the FBI principal jurisdiction over the Lindbergh kidnapping case, 19 months after the March 1, 1932 disappearance of Charles Lindbergh, Jr.[29]
  • The romantic comedy-drama film Bombshell starring Jean Harlow and Lee Tracy was released.

October 14, 1933 (Saturday)[edit]

  • Germany announced that it would withdraw from the League of Nations, after the three Allied Powers of World War I (France, the U.K. and the U.S.) denied its request to increase its military.[30]

October 15, 1933 (Sunday)[edit]

  • Esquire, which billed itself as "the magazine for men", published its first issue, with 100,000 copies that sold out quickly, despite the high cover price of fifty cents.[31]
  • The cornerstone for the future Haus der Deutschen Kunst (literally the "House of German Art"), was laid in Munich by Adolf Hitler on a special "German Art Day". Hitler's aide Albert Speer would later recount that the building's architect Paul Troost, had designed a ceremonial silver hammer for the event, but that the hammer broke while Hitler was using it. Troost would die four months later, and Hitler would tell Speer, "When that hammer shattered I knew at once it was an evil omen. Something is going to happen, I thought. Now we know why the hammer broke. The architect was destined to die."[32]
  • The Philadelphia Eagles played their first regular season NFL game, more than a month after the other teams had begun play, losing to the Giants at New York, 56-0.
  • Died: Nitobe Inazō, 71, Japanese diplomat and Christian

October 16, 1933 (Monday)[edit]

October 17, 1933 (Tuesday)[edit]

October 18, 1933 (Wednesday)[edit]

  • The Grumman F2F fighter airplane was given its first flight, piloted by Jimmy Collins.[38]
  • The last lynching in Maryland took place in the town of Princess Anne. George Armwood had been arrested two days earlier and charged with the rape of an 81-year-old woman. A mob of more than 1,000 people surrounded the Somerset County Jail, dragged him through the streets, hanged him, then brought the body back to the courthouse where it was hung from a telephone pole and burned.[39]

October 19, 1933 (Thursday)[edit]

  • William C. Bullitt and Henry Morgenthau, Jr. were sent by U.S. President Roosevelt to informally speak with Soviet trade representative Boris Skvirskii about the prospect of establishing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R.[40]
  • Died: Moses Orimolade, 55, Nigerian Yoruban religious leader who founded the Order of the Cherubim and Seraphim.

October 20, 1933 (Friday)[edit]

October 21, 1933 (Saturday)[edit]

October 22, 1933 (Sunday)[edit]

  • Voters in Iceland overwhelmingly approved the repeal of a 1915 law that had prohibited the sale of alcohol. In 1922, the law had been modified to grant an exception to wines imported from Spain.[44]

October 23, 1933 (Monday)[edit]

  • In his first bank robbery since escaping from jail and then raiding police stations for guns and bulletproof vests, John Dillinger and his gang robbed the Central National Bank in Greencastle, Indiana, taking $75,000. On the same day, Baby Face Nelson and his gang robbed the First National Bank of Brainerd, Minnesota, of $32,000.[25][45]

October 24, 1933 (Tuesday)[edit]

October 25, 1933 (Wednesday)[edit]

  • U.S. President Roosevelt reversed economic policy and began a program of buying gold at higher than the existing rate of $20.67 per ounce.[48]
  • What one author has described as "radio's first romantic adventure", Dangerous Paradise premiered on the NBC Blue Network (later renamed the ABC Radio Network).[49]

October 26, 1933 (Thursday)[edit]

  • After the Dillinger gang continued its string of robberies in Indiana, Governor Paul V. McNutt took the unusual response of calling out the Indiana National Guard to stop the criminals. The gang then fled to Chicago.[25]

October 27, 1933 (Friday)[edit]

  • Charles Edward Washington, scheduled to be put to death in the electric chair in the District of Columbia jail, was given a two-day reprieve while awaiting death for the murder of a D.C. policeman. His partner, William Robinson, was already in the chair when the call from President Roosevelt came, and was executed as scheduled.[50] After the two days expired, Washington was 2 hours and 20 minutes away from another execution on October 30, when he received another reprieve.[51]
  • Grady Brooks was executed in Milledgeville, Georgia, for the murder of prison guard Lee Lindsay. Before going to the electric chair, the 19-year-old African-American confessed to 18 other murders, five of them when he was a 13-year-old child.[52]
  • Miss Grace Fryer became the 18th employee of an Orange, New Jersey, watch factory to die of radium poisoning. Miss Fryer had developed the disease almost twenty years earlier, and had painted watch faces with radium so that they would glow. As with the other workers, she moistened the paint brushes with her lips and ingested the carcinogenic element.[53]
  • Died: Ramon Casanelles, Spanish anarchist who assassinated Prime Minister Dato; in a motorcycle accident.

October 28, 1933 (Saturday)[edit]

October 29, 1933 (Sunday)[edit]

October 30, 1933 (Monday)[edit]

October 31, 1933 (Tuesday)[edit]

  • Samuel Insull, former utilities magnate who had fled the United States to avoid charges of swindling investors, was successful in avoiding extradition from Greece.[57]


  1. ^ "Steamer Capsizes", Pittsburgh Press, October 2, 1933, p1
  2. ^ Irene Guenther, Nazi 'Chic'?: Fashioning Women in the Third Reich (Berg, 2004) p233
  3. ^ Angela Ballara, Te Kingitanga: The People of the Māori King Movement (Auckland University Press, 1996) p108
  4. ^ Don B. Wilmeth, The Cambridge Guide to American Theatre (Cambridge University Press, 2007) p56
  5. ^ "Dollfuss Is Shot But Will Live; Assassin Held", Oakland Tribune, October 3, 1933, p1
  6. ^ "Fifty Trapped, Die in Flames", Pittsburgh Press, October 4, 1933, p1
  7. ^ "President of Cuba Escapes Assassins", Pittsburgh Press, October 3, 1933, p1
  8. ^ Jeffrey Herf, The Jewish Enemy: Nazi Propaganda During World War II And the Holocaust (Harvard University Press, 2006) p18
  9. ^ "8,000,000 Workers Pledge German Boycott". Chicago Daily Tribune. Chicago. October 6, 1933. p. 2.
  10. ^ "'Railroad Jack,' High Brow Hobo, Reaches Trail's End" Pittsburgh Press, October 7, 1933, p1
  11. ^ "Britain Rejects Hitler's Claim for More Arms". Chicago Daily Tribune. Chicago. October 7, 1933. p. 1.
  12. ^ "Leader's speech, Birmingham 1933". BritishPoliticalSpeech. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  13. ^ "Prussia Urges Incurables Be Put to Death". Chicago Daily Tribune. Chicago. October 7, 1933. p. 6.
  14. ^ "OTT's Homer Wins World Series For Giants", Pittsburgh Press, October 8, 1933, pS-1
  15. ^ "Spanish President Dissolves Cortes", Pittsburgh Press, October 9, 1933, p23
  16. ^ "Koroki Te Rata Mahuta Tawhiao Potatau Te Wherowhero", by Angela Ballara, Dictionary of New Zealand Biography online
  17. ^ "Spanish Cortes Dead; Election Battle Opens". Chicago Daily Tribune. Chicago. October 10, 1933. p. 5.
  18. ^ "Seven Killed as Air Liner Explodes, Falls in Flames"", Pittsburgh Press, October 11, 1933, p1
  19. ^ "Crash of Air Liner Is Laid to Bomb", Pittsburgh Press, October 14, 1933, p1
  20. ^ "Aeronautical Mass Murder", in Encyclopedia of Murder and Violent Crime, Eric Hickey, ed. (SAGE, 2003), p1
  21. ^ Edmund Jan Osmańczyk and Anthony Mango, Encyclopedia of the United Nations and International Agreements: A to F (Taylor & Francis, 2003) p1980-1981
  22. ^ "Big Powers Forbid Germany to Re-Arm", Pittsburgh Press, October 11, 1933, p1
  23. ^ Multilateral Treaties Deposited with the Secretary-General, Volume 1 (United Nations Publications, 2005) p460
  24. ^ William B. Breuer, J. Edgar Hoover and His G-Men (Greenwood Publishing Group, 1995) p136
  25. ^ a b c G. Russell Girardin and William J. Helmer, Dillinger: The Untold Story (Indiana University Press, 2005)
  26. ^ "Kill Sheriff, Take Robber from Ohio Jail", Chicago Daily Tribune, October 13, 1933, p1
  27. ^ David A. Ward and Gene G. Kassebaum, Alcatraz: The Gangster Years (University of California Press, 2009) p49
  28. ^ "Fireworks Factory Blast Fatal to 30", Pittsburgh Press, October 14, 1933, p1
  29. ^ Ronald Kessler, The Bureau: The Secret History of the FBI (Macmillan, 2003) p30
  30. ^ "GERMANY QUITS LEAGUE OF NATIONS", Pittsburgh Press, October 14, 1933, p1; Leopold Schwarzschild, Chronicle of a Downfall: Germany 1929-1939 (I.B. Tauris, 2010) p114
  31. ^ David E. Sumner, The Magazine Century: American Magazines Since 1900 (Peter Lang, 2010) p83
  32. ^ Albert Speer, Inside the Third Reich (Simon and Schuster, 1970) p49
  33. ^ "Labor Party Shows Gains in Norway", Lethbridge (AB) Herald, October 18, 1933, p4
  34. ^ Jim Powell, FDR's Folly: How Roosevelt and His New Deal Prolonged the Great Depression (Random House Digital, 2004) p136
  35. ^ Donald R. Raichle, New Jersey's Union College: A History, 1933-1983 (Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 1983) p30
  36. ^ Walter Isaacson, Einstein: His Life and Universe (Simon and Schuster, 2007) p425
  37. ^ Cornel West and Eddie S. Glaude, African American Religious Thought: An Anthology (Westminster John Knox Press, 2003) p570
  38. ^ Cory Graff, F6F Hellcat at War (Zenith Imprint, 2009) p18
  39. ^ Barbara Allen, Sense Of Place: American Regional Cultures (University Press of Kentucky, 1992) pp84-86; "Mob Lynches Man Accused in Attack Case", Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, October 19, 1933, p1; "1001 Black Men – #197, George Armwood"
  40. ^ Edward M. Bennett, Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Search for Security: American-Soviet Relations, 1933-1939 (Rowman & Littlefield, 1985) p16
  41. ^ "379 Missing in Storm", Pittsburgh Press, October 21, 1933, p1
  42. ^ Richard C. Frucht, Eastern Europe: An Introduction to the People, Lands, and Culture, Volume 1 (ABC-CLIO, 2004) p78
  43. ^ Howard Pollack, George Gershwin: His Life And Work (University of California Press, 2006) p550
  44. ^ "Voting in Iceland Dooms Prohibition", Pittsburgh Press, October 23, 1933, p1
  45. ^ John Toland, The Dillinger Days (Da Capo Press, 1995) p136
  46. ^ Philip Charles Farwell Bankwitz, Maxime Weygand and Civil-Military Relations in Modern France (Harvard University Press, 1967) p169
  47. ^ Edgar A. Haine, Railroad Wrecks (Associated University Presses, 1993) pp154-155
  48. ^ Herbert Levy, Henry Morgenthau, Jr: The Remarkable Life of FDR's Secretary of the Treasury (Skyhorse Publishing, 2010)
  49. ^ a b Jim Cox, Historical Dictionary of American Radio Soap Operas (Scarecrow Press, 2005)
  50. ^ "President Roosevelt Spares Condemned Man When Death in Chair Is But 4 Minutes Away", Pittsburgh Press, October 27, 1933, p1
  51. ^ "Man Again Escapes Chair", Pittsburgh Press, October 30, 1933, p1
  52. ^ "Youth Confesses Killing 19 Persons", Pittsburgh Press, October 27, 1933, p1
  53. ^ "18th Victim Dies of Radium Poison", Pittsburgh Press, October 27, 1933, p1
  54. ^ "Duce Launches Italy on Drive to 'Conquer' World". Chicago Daily Tribune. October 29, 1935. p. 15.
  55. ^ Bill Jaker, et al., The Airwaves of New York: Illustrated Histories of 156 Am Stations in the Metropolitan Area, 1921-1996 (McFarland, 1998) p12
  56. ^ Antony Beevor, The Battle for Spain: The Spanish Civil War, 1936-1939 (Penguin, 2006) p40
  57. ^ "Greek Verdict Lauds Insull, Liberates Him", Pittsburgh Press, November 1, 1933, p1