October 1927

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October 6, 1927: The Jazz Singer brings voices to screen
October 4, 1927: Work begins on proposed carving of Mount Rushmore in South Dakota
October 25, 1927: 293 die when the Principessa Mafalda sinks
The same mountain after 1934 completion [1]

The following events occurred in October 1927:

Saturday, October 1[edit]

For the same date in other years, see October 1.

Sunday, October 2[edit]

For the same date in other years, see October 2.

Monday, October 3[edit]

  • After General Francisco Serrano announced that he would run against former Mexican President Álvaro Obregón in the 1928 election, President Plutarco Elías Calles ordered Serrano's elimination. General Serrano and 12 of his men were intercepted on the road between Cuernavaca and Mexico City and arrested. After General Claudio Fox arrived, the 13 detainees were executed, on the spot, by the Mexican Army. Obregon's other rival, General Arnulfo Gomez, would be executed the next month. With no competitors, Obregon won the election, only to be assassinated two weeks afterward.[6]

For the same date in other years, see October 3.

Tuesday, October 4[edit]

For the same date in other years, see October 4.

Wednesday, October 5[edit]

Lugosi as Dracula

For the same date in other years, see October 5.

Thursday, October 6[edit]

  • At 8:45 pm, The Jazz Singer, starring Al Jolson, was presented for the first time. The Warner Brothers film was shown at the Warner Theater in New York, which had been specially wired for sound with the Vitaphone system. It was the first "talkie", with sound synchronized to the film, although much of it was silent, with title cards, and in cities without the sound system, was seen as another silent movie. The first words heard by the audience were Jolson, as Jakie Rabinowitz, shouting to an orchestra, ""Wait a minute! Wait a minute! I tell ya, you ain't heard nothin' yet!" In keeping with the film's theme of a conflict within a Jewish family, the film premiered after sunset on the eve of the Yom Kippur holiday.[11]
  • Born: Antony Grey, English gay rights activist, in Wilmslow (d. 2010)
  • Died: Amy Catherine Robbins Wells, 55, wife of science fiction author H. G. Wells. The character of Amy Robbins was portrayed by Mary Steenburgen in the 1979 science fiction film Time After Time, the premise being that Robbins was a 1979 bank employee who married Wells after traveling back to 1895.

For the same date in other years, see October 6.

Friday, October 7[edit]

  • Tommy Loughran, nicknamed The Philadelphia Phantom, became the light heavyweight boxing champion of the world, outpointing Mike McTigue in 15 rounds. Loughran retired in 1929 in order to pursue, unsuccessfully, the heavyweight title.[12]
  • The sudden collapse of the Kimberly-Clark factory in Appleton, Wisconsin, killed 9 people and injured 18 others.[13]
  • Born:
  • Died: John Shillington "Jack" Prince, 68, British cricketer and bicyclist. He also built tracks for bicycle, motorcycle and sprint car racing.

For the same date in other years, see October 7.

Saturday, October 8[edit]

For the same date in other years, see October 8.

Sunday, October 9[edit]

  • The fire department in Spokane, Washington, blamed a house fire on sunlight and a goldfish bowl, reporting that the glass bowl "acted as a lens, focusing the sun's rays to a single point of impact" to set aflame a curtain at the home of Mrs. E. C. Barrett.[17]
  • The Mexican Army battled anti-government rebels as the two forces met at Vera Cruz at 3:00 in the afternoon. The fighting lasted until 8:00 pm the next evening, and the insurrection against the Calles government was suppressed.[18]

For the same date in other years, see October 9.

Monday, October 10[edit]

For the same date in other years, see October 10.

Tuesday, October 11[edit]

  • Pilot Ruth Elder took off from New York in the airplane American Girl, with her co-pilot, George Haldeman, in an attempt to become the first woman to duplicate Charles Lindbergh's transatlantic crossing to Paris. Mechanical problems caused them to ditch the plane 360 miles from land, but they established a new over-water endurance flight record of 2,623 miles.[24]
  • Mona McLellan, real name Dr. Dorothy Cochrane Logan, arrived at Folkestone after reportedly breaking Gertrude Ederle's record for swimming the English Channel, with a new time of 13 hours and 10 minutes. For the feat, she won a $5,000 prize from the British newspaper News of the World. Days later, she revealed that her Channel swim had been a hoax, designed to demonstrate the lack of monitoring or verification of record-breaking attempts.[25]
  • Born: William J. Perry, U.S. Secretary of Defense 1994–1997, in Vandergrift, Pennsylvania

For the same date in other years, see October 11.

Wednesday, October 12[edit]

  • Wright Field, located near Dayton, Ohio, was dedicated for use by the United States Army Air Corps. The land was created from Wilbur Wright Field and an additional acreage, and renamed in Wilbur's honor and that of Orville Wright. The field is now part of the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.
  • Florence Mills, the African-American actress who had become an international superstar while on tour in Europe, made a triumphant return to New York City. She would die of a ruptured appendix almost three weeks later, after postponing surgery "to attend to the demands of celebrity" [26]
  • Died: Alonzo M. Griffen, 80, American preacher, died while making an impassioned speech to the National Spiritualist Association of Churches convention in San Antonio

For the same date in other years, see October 12.

Thursday, October 13[edit]

For the same date in other years, see October 13.

Friday, October 14[edit]

  • Dieudonne Costas and Joseph Le Brix became the first persons to fly an airplane across the South Atlantic Ocean, and the first to make an east-to-west transatlantic crossing, departing Saint-Louis, Senegal and arriving in Port Natal, Brazil 21 hours and 15 minutes later, at 11:40 pm local time.[28]
  • Born: Roger Moore, English actor, in Stockwell, London (d. 2017)

For the same date in other years, see October 14.

Saturday, October 15[edit]

  • Oil was discovered in Iraq at 3:00 am the Baba Gurgur fields 50 miles south of Kirkuk, with a gusher that erupted after drilling had reached a depth of 1,500 feet. The strike created the first major oil field in the Middle East.[29]
  • Mustafa Kemal, later given the honorific Atatürk (Father of the Turks) began the speech called the Nutuk, for six hours a day over six days, "the primary source for the official Turkish version of the history of the resistance movement" [30]
  • Germany's highest court, the Staatsgerichtshof, declared itself to be the "Guardian of the Constitution" of the Weimar republic[31]
  • In a drive-by shooting on Manhattan's Norfolk Street, Louis "Lepke" Buchalter assassinated "Little Augie" Orgenstein, industrial racketeer, and wounded "Legs" Diamond. Lepke and Gurrah Shapiro[32]
  • The heart of General Tadeusz Kościuszko (1746–1817), a hero of the American Revolution, was returned to Warsaw in a bronze urn, after having been stored for 90 years in a museum at Rapperswil in Switzerland.[33]

For the same date in other years, see October 15.

Sunday, October 16[edit]

For the same date in other years, see October 16.

Monday, October 17[edit]

  • Ban Johnson, who had founded the American League in 1901, was forced to step down from the post of president of the AL.[35]
  • A revision of the constitution of the semi-independent Republic of Lebanon reduced the size of the legislature and gave President Charles Debbas the power to appoint one-third of its members. Lebanon remained a protectorate of France, through a High Commissioner.[36]
  • In the Teapot Dome scandal, the criminal trial of former Interior Secretary Albert B. Fall and former Mammoth Oil chief Harry F. Sinclair began.[37]
  • Born: Friedrich Hirzebruch, German mathematician specializing in algebraic geometry, and co-discoverer of the Hirzebruch-Riemann-Roch theorem, at Hamm

For the same date in other years, see October 17.

Tuesday, October 18[edit]

For the same date in other years, see October 18.

Wednesday, October 19[edit]

  • The case of Buck v. Bell was decided. Carrie Buck, who had fought all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court to have forced sterilization declared unconstitutional- and lost- was sterilized by Dr. Bell. She was one of 50,000 American women sterilized in accordance with state laws, and the case was cited by Nazi lawyers in the sterilization of 2,000,000 women.[39]
  • What would become the border between Singapore and Malaysia was worked out by agreement of the United Kingdom and the Sultan of the State of Johor.[40]
  • Born: Pierre Alechinsky, Belgian painter, in Brussels

For the same date in other years, see October 19.

Thursday, October 20[edit]

  • The Stamps Quartet, consisting of Odis Echols, Roy Wheeler, Palmer Wheeler, Dwight Brock, first recorded the gospel music bestseller "Give the World a Smile". The upbeat song inspired its own genre of gospel music.[41]

For the same date in other years, see October 20.

Friday, October 21[edit]

  • Groundbreaking was held for the George Washington Bridge on both shores of the Hudson River, and one in the river itself. The bridge would open eight months ahead of schedule, in October 1931.[42]

For the same date in other years, see October 21.

Saturday, October 22[edit]

  • Abie's Irish Rose closed after a run of 2,327 performances, after having opened on May 23, 1922. At the time, it was the longest running play in Broadway history, and was later passed by Life with Father in 1941.[43]
  • Died:

For the same date in other years, see October 22.

Sunday, October 23[edit]

Trotsky, Lev Kamenev and Zinoviev

For the same date in other years, see October 23.

Monday, October 24[edit]

For the same date in other years, see October 24.

Tuesday, October 25[edit]

For the same date in other years, see October 25.

Wednesday, October 26[edit]

For the same date in other years, see October 26.

Thursday, October 27[edit]

For the same date in other years, see October 27.

Friday, October 28[edit]

A Fokker F-VIII
Fox Movietone camera
  • Pan American Airways made the first regularly scheduled international flight by an American airline (and Pan Am's very first flight), with pilot Hugh Wells taking off from Key West, Florida, to Havana, Cuba, in a tri-motor Fokker F-VIII. Passenger service did not begin until January 16, 1928.[48] Pan Am's very last flight would also be international and from a Caribbean island to Florida, as Captain Mark Pyle brought Pan Am Flight 436 from Bridgetown, Barbados to a landing in Miami on December 4, 1991.
  • Fox Movietone News presented the first synchronized-sound newsreel, at the Roxy Theater in New York.[49]
  • In Cleggan Bay off the west coast of Ireland, 45 fishermen drowned when an unexpected storm blew in. Twenty-five were from County Galway (16 from the village of Rossadilisk (near Connemara and nine from Inishbofin, while twenty more were from County Mayo in Lacken (near Ballycastle) and in the Inishkea Islands. Marie Feeney, the granddaughter of one of the survivors, would write about the tragedy 75 years later in a 2002 book, The Cleggan Bay Disaster.[50]
  • Born: Roza Makagonova, Soviet actress, in Samara, RSFSR (d. 1995)

For the same date in other years, see October 28.

Saturday, October 29[edit]

  • The Central Committee of the Communist Party of the USSR adopted the resolution "On the Cleansing of Libraries from Ideologically Harmful Literature", requiring the removal of disapproved books across the Soviet Union.[51]
  • Born: Lt. Col. Yuri Nosenko, KGB agent who defected to the United States in 1964, and was imprisoned on suspicion of being a double agent until 1967; in Nikolayev, Ukrainian SSR. (d. 2008)

For the same date in other years, see October 29.

Sunday, October 30[edit]

  • Admiral Paul Kondouriotis, the President of Greece, survived an assassination attempt by a 25-year-old waiter. Zafioios Goussies shot President Kondouriotis in the head as the President was leaving a conference of Greece's mayors in Athens.[52]

For the same date in other years, see October 30.

Monday, October 31[edit]

  • The drifting ship Ryo Yei Maru was spotted off of Cape Flattery, Washington State. When the American freighter Margaret Dollar arrived, the rescuers found the emaciated bodies of all twelve of the Japanese ship's crew. The ship's engine had failed on December 23, 1926, during a gale, and the men on board slowly died of starvation, with the last one succumbing on May 11. Having drifted 5,000 miles, the ship was towed into Seattle. After a Buddhist funeral ceremony for the 12 men, their bodies were cremated and the vessel was burned.[53]
  • Born: Lee Grant, American actress, in New York City

For the same date in other years, see October 31.


  1. ^ attribution: Winkelvi
  2. ^ Michele Hilmes, Hollywood and Broadcasting: From Radio to Cable (University of Illinois Press, 1999) p37
  3. ^ Waldo, Ronald T. (2013). Pennant Hopes Dashed by the Homer in the Gloamin': The Story of How the 1938 Pittsburgh Pirates Blew the National League Pennant. Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Company, Inc. p. 8. ISBN 9780786472024.
  4. ^ Robert Moats Miller, Harry Emerson Fosdick: Preacher, Pastor, Prophet (Oxford University Press US, 1985) p385
  5. ^ Deborah Todd and Joseph A. Angelo, A to Z of Scientists in Space and Astronomy (Infobase Publishing, 2005) p29
  6. ^ Jurgen Buchenau, The Last Caudillo: Alvaro Obregon and the Mexican Revolution (John Wiley and Sons, 2011); "MEXICO CRUSHES MUTINY!- Gen. Serrano, Revolt Chief, with 13 Aids, Put to Death", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 5, 1927, p1
  7. ^ Patrick Straub, It Happened in South Dakota: Remarkable Events That Shaped History (Globe Pequot, 2010) pp66-67
  8. ^ Edmund Jan Osmańczyk and Anthony Mango, Encyclopedia of the United Nations and International Agreements: G to M (Taylor & Francis, 2003) p1134
  9. ^ "Liverpool Picks 1st Woman Lord Mayor", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 5, 1927, p1
  10. ^ Eric Nuzum, The Dead Travel Fast: Stalking Vampires from Nosferatu to Count Chocula (Macmillan, 2008) p205
  11. ^ William Guynn, The Routledge Companion to Film History (Taylor & Francis, 2010) p68; "The Screen: Al Jolson and the Vitaphone" NYT 10.7.27 p24
  12. ^ Nat Fleischer and Sam Andre, An Illustrated History of Boxing (Citadel Press, 2002) pp195-196
  13. ^ "9 DEAD IN MILL CRASH; DIG IN RUINS FOR BODIES", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 8, 1927, p1
  14. ^ Wes D. Gehring, Laurel & Hardy: A Bio-bibliography (Greenwood Publishing Group, 1990) p263 imdb.com
  15. ^ Leo Trachtenberg, The Wonder Team: The True Story of the Incomparable 1927 New York Yankees (Popular Press, 1995) pp122-123: "NEW YORK BEATS PIRATES 4 TO 3", Spokane Daily Chronicle, October 8, 1927, pII-2
  16. ^ George Galdorisi and Thomas Phillips, Leave No Man Behind: The Saga of Combat Search and Rescue (Zenith Imprint, 2009) pp24-25
  17. ^ "Gold Fish Bowl And Sun Join in Starting Blaze", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 10, 1927, p1
  18. ^ "ROUT REBELS AT VERA CRUZ!", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 11, 1927, p1
  19. ^ James H. Rial, Revolution from Above: The Primo de Rivera Dictatorship in Spain, 1923-1930 (Associated University Presse, 1986) p114
  20. ^ Cary D. Wintz and Paul Finkelman, Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance Volume 2 (Taylor & Francis, 2004) p986
  21. ^ Mark Tucker, Ellington: The Early Years (University of Illinois Press, 1995) p207
  22. ^ Sharon Chien Lin, Libraries and Librarianship in China (Greenwood Publishing Group, 1998) p60
  23. ^ Nancy Marlow-Trump, Ruby Keeler: A Photographic Biography (McFarland, 2005) p33
  24. ^ Lynn M. Homan, et al., Women Who Fly (Pelican Publishing, 2004) p46-47; "RUTH ELDER HOPS OFF!", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 11, 1927, p1
  25. ^ "London Woman Breaks Ederle Channel Mark", Miami News, October 11, 1927, p1; "Channel Swim Hoax Admitted by Prize Winner", Miami News, October 16, 1927, p1
  26. ^ Janus Adams, Sister Days: 365 Inspired Moments in African-American Women's History (John Wiley and Sons, 2000) p12
  27. ^ Ted Schwarz, Shocking Stories of the Cleveland Mob (The History Press, 2010) pp26-28
  28. ^ James P. Harrison, Mastering the Sky: A History of Aviation from Ancient Times to the Present (Da Capo Press, 2000) p100; Richard Bak, The Big Jump: Lindbergh and the Great Atlantic Air Race (John Wiley and Sons, 2011) pp252-253 "FRENCH FLYERS CONQUER ATLANTIC", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 15, 1927, p.1
  29. ^ Daniel Yergin, The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money, & Power (Simon and Schuster, 1991)
  30. ^ Gareth Jenkins, Political Islam in Turkey: Running West, Heading East? (Macmillan, 2008) p98
  31. ^ Ellen Kennedy, Constitutional Failure: Carl Schmitt in Weimar (Duke University Press, 2004) p151
  32. ^ Howard Abadinsky, Organized Crime (Cengage Learning, 2009) p77
  33. ^ "Heart of Hero Kosciusko Sent Back to Poland", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 16, 1927, p1
  34. ^ Penny Van Oosterzee, Dragon Bones: The Story of Peking Man (Basic Books, 2000) pp98-100
  35. ^ Robert Wiggins, The Federal League of Base Ball Clubs: The History of an Outlaw Major League, 1914-1915 (McFarland, 2008) p304
  36. ^ Martin Sicker, The Middle East in the Twentieth Century (Greenwood Publishing Group, 2001) p74
  37. ^ Robert Grant and Joseph Katz, The Great Trials of the Twenties: The Watershed Decade in America's Courtrooms (Da Capo Press, 1998) p218
  38. ^ a b "French Jurors Free Avenger of Pogrom Dead". Chicago Daily Tribune. October 27, 1927. p. 19.
  39. ^ Harry Bruinius, Better for All the World: The Secret History of Forced Sterilization and America's Quest for Racial Purity (Random House Digital, Inc., 2006) p1
  40. ^ Lin Sien Chia, Southeast Asia Transformed: A Geography of Change (Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, 2003) p77
  41. ^ W. K. McNeil, Encyclopedia of American Gospel Music (Taylor and Francis, 2005) p370
  42. ^ Sharon Reier, The Bridges of New York (Courier Dover Publications, 2000) pp99-100
  43. ^ Gabrielle H. Cody and Evert Sprinchorn, The Columbia Encyclopedia of Modern Drama, Volume 1 (Columbia University Press, 2007) p4
  44. ^ R. J. Overy, The Dictators: Hitler's Germany and Stalin's Russia (W. W. Norton & Company, 2004) p27
  45. ^ Stuart R. Schram and Nancy Jane Hodes, Mao's Road to Power: From the Jinggangshan to the establishment of the Jiangxi Soviets, July 1927-December 1930 (M.E. Sharpe, 1992) p283
  46. ^ "Henry Ford Sees First New Type Car Produced; Low, With Graceful Lines, and Fifty-Mile Speed", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 24, 1927, p1
  47. ^ "LINER SINKS; 880 MISSING", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 26, 1927, p1; "Radio Snaps Tense Story of Last Moments on Liner", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 27, 1927, p2; "LINER DEATHS SET AT 300", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 28, 1927, p1; "293 Is Liner Toll; Rescue Ships in Port", Milwaukee Sentinel, October 29, 1927, p3
  48. ^ "Early Airlines- Pan American Airways", Flying Magazine (March 1964) p53
  49. ^ John C. Tibbetts, The American theatrical film: stages in development (Popular Press, 1985) p208
  50. ^ "New book tells of tragic night when 45 men died", by Lorna Siggins, The Irish Times (March 11, 2002)
  51. ^ Evgeny Dobrenko, The Making of the State Reader: Social and Aesthetic Contexts of the Reception of Soviet Literature (Stanford University Press, 1997) p194
  52. ^ "President of Greece Shot"Milwaukee Sentinel, October 31, 1927, p1
  53. ^ Bill Gulick, A Traveler's History of Washington (Caxton Press, 1996) pp149-152; "Ship's Log Tells a Grim Story of Starvation Death", Ellensburg (OR) Daily Record, November 2, 1927, p1