On This Day … 23 September


  • 1338 – The Battle of Arnemuiden, in which a French force defeats the English, is the first naval battle of the Hundred Years’ War and the first naval battle in which gunpowder artillery is used.
  • 1409 – The Battle of Kherlen is the second significant victory over Ming dynasty China by the Mongols since 1368.
  • 1459 – The Battle of Blore Heath, the first major battle of the English Wars of the Roses, is won by the Yorkists.
  • 1561 – King Philip II of Spain issues cedula, ordering halt to colonizing efforts in Florida.
  • 1779 – American Revolution: John Paul Jones, naval commander of the United States, on board the USS Bonhomme Richard, wins the Battle of Flamborough Head.
  • 1780 – American Revolution: British Major John André is arrested as a spy by American soldiers exposing Benedict Arnold’s change of sides.
  • 1803 – Second Anglo-Maratha War: The Battle of Assaye is fought between the British East India Company and the Maratha Empire in India.
  • 1806 – Lewis and Clark return to St. Louis after exploring the Pacific Northwest of the United States.
  • 1821 – Tripolitsa, Greece, is captured by Greek rebels during the Greek War of Independence.
  • 1868 – Grito de Lares (“Lares Revolt”) occurs in Puerto Rico against Spanish rule.
    • Grito de Lares (Puerto Rico).
  • 1899 – Philippine-American War: The American Asiatic Squadron destroys a Filipino battery at the Battle of Olongapo.
  • 1905 – Norway and Sweden sign the “Karlstad treaty”, peacefully dissolving the Union between the two countries.
  • 1932 – The unification of Saudi Arabia is completed.
  • 1938 – The Czechoslovak army is mobilised in response to the Munich Agreement.
  • 1942 – World War II: The Matanikau action on Guadalcanal begins: US Marines attack Japanese units along the Matanikau River.
  • 1943 – World War II: The Nazi puppet state known as the Italian Social Republic is founded.
  • 1950 – Korean War: The Battle of Hill 282 is the first US friendly-fire incident on British military personnel since World War II.

People (Births)

  • 1791 – Theodor Körner, German soldier and author (d. 1813).
  • 1890 – Friedrich Paulus, German general (d. 1957).
  • 1900 – Bill Stone, English soldier, one of the last five surviving First World War veterans who served in the United Kingdom’s armed forces and one of the last two surviving seamen worldwide, along with Claude Choules (d. 2009).
  • 1936 – Tareq Suheimat, Jordanian physician, general, and politician (d. 2014).
  • 1961 – William C. McCool, American commander, pilot, and astronaut (d. 2003).

People (Deaths)

  • 1193 – Robert de Sablé, French knight.
  • 1573 – Azai Hisamasa, Japanese warlord (b. 1524).
  • 1850 – José Gervasio Artigas, Uruguayan general and politician (b. 1764).
  • 1913 – Donato Álvarez, Argentinian general (b. 1825).
  • 1917 – Werner Voss, German lieutenant and pilot (b. 1897).
  • 1992 – James Van Fleet, American general (b. 1892).
  • 2009 – Paul B. Fay, American sailor and politician, United States Secretary of the Navy (b. 1918).
  • 2012 – Pavel Grachev, Russian general and politician, 1st Minister of Defence for Russia (b. 1948).
  • 2013 – Abdel Hamid al-Sarraj, Syrian colonel and politician (b. 1925).

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