Rahul Sharma (Editor)

April 1931

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The following events occurred in April 1931:

Contents

April 1, 1931 (Wednesday)

  • The Royal Navy battlecruiser HMS Glorious collided with the French ocean liner Florida in a dense fog about 60 miles off Gibraltar. Several crew members of the Florida were killed.
  • Stennes Revolt: Berlin SA commandant Walter Stennes was expelled from the Nazi Party after leading an internal rebellion.
  • Born: Ita Ever, actress, in Paide, Estonia; Rolf Hochhuth, author and playwright, in Eschwege, Germany
  • April 2, 1931 (Thursday)

  • Actress Pola Negri and Prince Serge Mdivani were divorced.
  • Seventeen-year old female baseball pitcher Jackie Mitchell struck out Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig in succession during an exhibition game between the New York Yankees and minor league Chattanooga Lookouts. Mitchell became a national media sensation, although it was questioned whether Ruth and Gehrig were actually trying or were merely going along with the publicity stunt.
  • April 3, 1931 (Friday)

  • Adolf Hitler accused Walter Stennes of plotting to violate the government's emergency dictatorship decree and issued an ultimatum to all SA members demanding they submit a written oath of allegiance by April 12 or face expulsion.
  • Born: William Bast, screenwriter and author, in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin (d. 2015); Gil Robbins, folk musician and actor, in Spokane, Washington (d. 2011)
  • April 4, 1931 (Saturday)

  • Vere Ponsonby, 9th Earl of Bessborough became the 14th Governor General of Canada.
  • April 5, 1931 (Sunday)

  • 187 communists were arrested in Berlin for conducting illegal demonstrations.
  • Born: Héctor Olivera, filmmaker, in Olivos, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • April 6, 1931 (Monday)

  • The trial of the nine Scottsboro Boys began, only nine days after their arrest.
  • Born: Suchitra Sen, film actress, in Pabna, British India (d. 2014)
  • April 7, 1931 (Tuesday)

  • The British Labour Party banned all supporters of Oswald Mosley from its ranks.
  • Walter Stennes sued Adolf Hitler and Joseph Goebbels for libel.
  • Anton Cermak was elected Mayor of Chicago by a landslide over the incumbent William Hale Thompson.
  • April 8, 1931 (Wednesday)

  • German Chancellor Heinrich Brüning and Foreign Minister Julius Curtius accepted an invitation to visit Britain in June.
  • The Dmitri Shostakovich ballet The Bolt premiered in Leningrad.
  • Born: John Gavin, actor and ambassador, in Los Angeles
  • Died: Erik Axel Karlfeldt, 66, Swedish poet
  • April 9, 1931 (Thursday)

  • Osachi Hamaguchi resigned as Prime Minister of Japan, having still not recovered from the attempt on his life in November.
  • Eight of the nine Scottsboro Boys were convicted and sentenced to death; a mistrial was declared for the ninth because of his youth. The executions were postponed pending court appeals.
  • Died: Nicholas Longworth, 61, American politician
  • April 10, 1931 (Friday)

  • Prussian Police President Albert Grzesinski ordered the weekly newspaper of the Stahlhelm banned for three months due to its attacks on the Prussian government.
  • Died: Kahlil Gibran, 48, Lebanese artist, poet and writer (cirrhosis of the liver and tuberculosis)
  • April 11, 1931 (Saturday)

  • 350 Bulgarian political prisoners were pardoned by royal decree on the occasion of Orthodox Easter celebrations.
  • Born: Luís Cabral, 1st President of Guinea-Bissau, in Bissau, Portuguese Guinea (d. 2009); Mustafa Dağıstanlı, sports wrestler, in Söğütpınar, Turkey; Johnny Sheffield, child actor, in Pasadena, California (d. 2010)
  • April 12, 1931 (Sunday)

  • Municipal elections were held in Spain. Voters overwhelmingly rejected the rule of King Alfonso XIII by electing republican candidates in 49 out of 50 provincial capitals.
  • April 13, 1931 (Monday)

  • The trial of Peter Kürten, charged with nine murders, began in Düsseldorf. Kürten took the stand and admitted to the crimes, but explained that he had been driven to take revenge on society for the harsh treatment he received in prison while serving time for burglaries and assaults.
  • April 14, 1931 (Tuesday)

  • King Alfonso XIII boarded a ship at Cartagena before dawn and fled Spain, although he did not officially abdicate. That night, provisional president Niceto Alcalá-Zamora stepped onto the balcony of the interior ministry building in Madrid and proclaimed the Second Spanish Republic to a cheering crowd of thousands.
  • Francesc Macià proclaimed a Catalan Republic.
  • The Montreal Canadiens defeated the Chicago Black Hawks 2-0 to win the Stanley Cup, three games to two.
  • Wakatsuki Reijirō became the new Prime Minister of Japan.
  • Berlin police Vice President Bernhard Weiß won a defamation lawsuit against Joseph Goebbels, who was ordered to pay 1500 Reichsmarks.
  • Died: Richard Armstedt, 79, German historian
  • April 15, 1931 (Wednesday)

  • Queen Victoria Eugenie and her family boarded a train and departed Spain to join Alfonso in exile. Even when passing through staunchly republican areas, large crowds of people cheered and applauded the procession.
  • Ernie Lombardi made his major league baseball debut with the Brooklyn Robins, going 2-for-2.
  • Born: Helen Maksagak, politician, in Bernard Harbour, Northwest Territories, Canada (d. 2009)
  • Died: Joe Masseria, 45, Sicilian-born American Mafia boss (assassinated)
  • April 16, 1931 (Thursday)

  • Exiled Spanish king Alfonso was mobbed by thousands of admirers upon his arrival in Paris to reunite with his family.
  • Serenade for Chamber Orchestra by Bohuslav Martinů was first performed in Paris.
  • Born: John Littlejohn, blues guitarist, in Lake, Mississippi (d. 1994)
  • April 17, 1931 (Friday)

  • Alfonso released a statement saying he was still the king of Spain and expressing confidence that upcoming elections would return him to power.
  • The Catalan Republic was called off after talks with the provisional Spanish government.
  • April 18, 1931 (Saturday)

  • The Earl of Willingdon became the Viceroy of India.
  • Arsenal F.C. won its first Football League title.
  • April 19, 1931 (Sunday)

  • Louis Chiron won the Monaco Grand Prix.
  • Born: Fred Brooks, computer scientist, in Durham, North Carolina
  • April 20, 1931 (Monday)

  • The British House of Commons passed a bill allowing movie theatres and other places of amusement to open on Sundays.
  • The German Supreme Court shortened the ban duration of the weekly newspaper of the Stahlhelm to May 1.
  • James P. Henigan won the Boston Marathon.
  • Died: Sir Cosmo Duff-Gordon, 5th Baronet, 68, British baronet and Titanic survivor
  • April 21, 1931 (Tuesday)

  • Great Britain and its Dominions extended diplomatic recognition to the Second Spanish Republic as Alfonso arrived in London.
  • April 22, 1931 (Wednesday)

  • Germany recognized the Second Spanish Republic.
  • German serial killer Peter Kürten was sentenced to death.
  • Born: John Buchanan, politician, in Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada
  • Died: Isabella, Princess of Asturias, 79
  • April 23, 1931 (Thursday)

  • The provisional Spanish government called for general elections on June 21.
  • The crime film The Public Enemy, featuring James Cagney in the role that made him a star, was released.
  • April 24, 1931 (Friday)

  • New York Governor Franklin D. Roosevelt vetoed a state bill which would have allowed physicians to prescribe medicinal liquor, explaining he was not unsympathetic to its purpose but that the bill was unworkable in its present form due its many "complicated and extravagant provisions".
  • Born: Bridget Riley, op artist, in West Norwood, London, England
  • April 25, 1931 (Saturday)

  • West Bromwich Albion defeated Birmingham 2-1 in the FA Cup Final at Wembley Stadium.
  • The Porsche automobile company was founded in Stuttgart.
  • April 26, 1931 (Sunday)

  • Mount Diablo State Park was dedicated in northern California.
  • Born: Paul Almond, television and film screenwriter, director and producer, in Montreal, Quebec, Canada (d. 2015)
  • Died: George Herbert Mead, 68, American philosopher, sociologist and psychologist
  • April 27, 1931 (Monday)

  • The Zangezur earthquake occurred along the border between Armenia and Azerbaijan, killing almost 3,000.
  • On Budget Day in the United Kingdom, Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Snowden introduced a land value tax and an increase in the gasoline tax. The budget still projected a deficit of £37.4 million.
  • Gangster Legs Diamond was shot in the head while dining in a roadside inn near Cairo, New York, but survived.
  • Born: Igor Oistrakh, violinist, in Odessa, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union
  • April 28, 1931 (Tuesday)

  • An oil well in Gladewater, Texas exploded, killing 14.
  • April 29, 1931 (Wednesday)

  • At least 41 were killed when a fire broke out on the Cairo–Alexandria express train.
  • Wes Ferrell of the Cleveland Indians pitched a 9-0 no-hitter against the St. Louis Browns.
  • Born: Frank Auerbach, German-born British painter, in Berlin; Lonnie Donegan, musician, in Glasgow, Scotland (d. 2002)
  • April 30, 1931 (Thursday)

  • About 50 workmen were killed when 1,000 tons of airplane bombs exploded in a naval laboratory near Niterói, Brazil.
  • Died: Sammy Woods, 64, Australian-born English sportsman
  • References

    April 1931 Wikipedia


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