1 January 1948 For the first time in the history of Japan, the Emperor opens the palace grounds to the public. About 100,000 people take advantage of the offer.
A republican constitution goes into effect in Italy.
A customs union between Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg (Benelux) goes into effect.
British railways are nationalized.
The General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade comes into effect.
About 700 Jewish refugees manage to reach the coast of northern Palestine, but two other ships carrying 11,000 Jews are escorted to Cyprus by the British.
Greek government forces lift the siege of Konitsa, after one week.
2 January 1948 With signing ceremonies in Paris, Rome, and Vienna, the United States pledges $522,000,000 in stopgap aid to France, Italy, and Austria.
3 January 1948 Police raid Communist Party headquarters in Rio de Janeiro. A gun battle ensues.
A Charm of Lullabies op.41, a cycle for voice and piano by Benjamin Britten (34) to five different authors, is performed for the first time, at The Hague.
4 January 1948 The Union of Burma (Myanmar) is declared independent of Great Britain, under President Sao Shwe Thaik and Prime Minister Thakin Nu.
Members of the Stern Gang bomb Arab National Committee Headquarters in Jaffa, killing 14 and injuring over 100.
South Africa annexes Prince Edward Island in the South Atlantic.
5 January 1948 Sexual Behavior in the Human Male by Alfred C. Kinsey is published by WB Saunders.
7 January 1948 Irgunists throw two bombs at the Jaffa Gate in Jerusalem, killing 18.
The Brazilian Chamber of Deputies votes to expel from office all Communist legislators in the country.
The magazines United States News and World Report announce that they are merging.
9 January 1948 600 Arabs cross the border from Syria into Lebanon and thence to attack the Jewish settlements of Kfar Szold and Dan. They are repulsed by British planes.
Symphony no.3 by Walter Piston (53) is performed for the first time, in Boston.
10 January 1948 Arabs make strong attacks near Jerusalem, Jaffa, and Lydda.
Andrey Zhdanov, First Secretary of the Leningrad Communist Party, convenes a meeting of musicians at the Party Central Committee in Moscow. He launches an all-out assault on “formalists”, Sergey Prokofiev (56), Aram Khachaturian (44), Dmitri Shostakovich (41) (all three of whom are present) and others. Their music is likened to a dentist’s drill. They are accused of elitism, and of abandoning “true” Soviet forms.
11 January 1948 Jews destroy the Jisr Banat Yacoub Bridge over the Jordan River to slow down Arab raids into the area.
12 January 1948 Stern Gang members relieve Barclay’s Bank in Tel Aviv of $37,000.
Actor and Jewish rights campaigner Solomon Mikhoels is killed in Minsk, on orders of Stalin. A car accident is staged to cover up the real cause of death.
In the case of Sipeul v. Board of Regents of the University of Oklahoma, the United States Supreme Court rules that states cannot racially discriminate in choosing law school applicants.
13 January 1948 Two courts having ruled that his marriage to Lina Llubera had no legal standing in the USSR, Sergey Prokofiev (56) marries Mariya (Mira) Cecilya Abramovna Mendelson, his companion since 1941.
14 January 1948 Arabs launch their first organized military action against the Jews. 1,000 attack the Etzion settlements 18 km southwest of Jerusalem in the Hebron Hills. The 30 Jewish defenders beat them off.
In the first execution of a woman in the Netherlands in over a century, Gestapo agent Ans van Dijk is killed by a firing squad.
15 January 1948 The Arab League announces in Cairo that the armies of its members will occupy all of Palestine whenever the British withdraw.
16 January 1948 Arabs capture the Etzion settlements 18 km southwest of Jerusalem.
17 January 1948 Representatives of the Netherlands and Indonesia agree on a cease-fire aboard the USS Renville off Batavia (Jakarta), to begin in 48 hours.
Arabs kill 35 Jews attempting to reinforce the settlement of Kfar Etzion, south of Jerusalem.
Fantasia for string orchestra by Peter Mennin (24) is performed for the first time, in New York.
18 January 1948 Mohandas Gandhi ends a five-day fast in New Delhi when Hindu, Moslem, and Sikh leaders pledge a guarantee of communal peace.
19 January 1948 The Arab High Commission in Jerusalem refuses to designate a liaison officer with the UN Palestine Committee.
20 January 1948 A bomb explodes 25 meters from where Mahatma Gandhi is addressing a meeting in Delhi.
17 members of the National Peasant Party are convicted of sedition and sentenced to up to ten years by a Bucharest court.
21 January 1948 100,000 workers in Cologne, 70,000 in Nuremberg, and 8,000 in Wiesbaden strike in protest to food shortages in Germany.
Great Britain refuses a UN request that a port in Palestine be opened to increased Jewish immigration.
23 January 1948 Vice-President Mohammed Hatta is named to succeed Amir Sjarifuddin as Prime Minister of Indonesia.
1,000,000 Bavarian workers stage a one-day strike to protest food shortages.
Symphony no.4 by David Diamond (32) is performed for the first time, in Boston Leonard Bernstein (29) conducting.
24 January 1948 The IBM Selective Sequence Electronic Calculator is unveiled in New York. Made up of 13,500 vacuum tubes and 21,000 electronic relays, it can deal with both data and instructions.
John Huston’s film The Treasure of the Sierra Madre is released in the United States.
Eight sonatas and four interludes from Sonatas and Interludes for prepared piano by John Cage (35) are performed for the first time, in McMillin Theatre of Columbia University. The program is moderated by Virgil Thomson (51).
25 January 1948 Soviet troops halt a British train heading for the British occupation zone and force it to return to Berlin.
Symphony no.2 by Robert Ward (30) is performed for the first time, in Constitution Hall, Washington.
26 January 1948 Chinese Communists capture the rail junction at Sinlitun, west of Mukden.
Two Children’s Songs for voice and piano by Witold Lutoslawski (35) to words of Tuwim is performed for the first time, in Kraków. Also premiered are Lutslawski’s Six Children’s Songs for voice and piano, performed completely for the first time. See 20 October 1947.
27 January 1948 The first commercial magnetic tape recorder, the Wireway, is put on sale by the Wire Recording Corporation of America. It costs $49.50.
28 January 1948 The Arab High Commission for Palestine announces that it is preparing a six-month supply of food for the upcoming war.
A piano suite from Marc Blitzstein’s (42) unperformed ballet The Guests is performed for the first time, in Severance Hall, Cleveland by the composer. See 20 January 1949.
29 January 1948 The Quest for orchestra by Roy Harris (49) is performed for the first time, in Murat Theatre, Indianapolis.
30 January 1948 Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi is shot and killed in New Delhi by Nathuram Vinayak Godse, editor of a Hindu extremist newspaper in Poona. Godse is immediately subdued by the surrounding crowd.
The Fifth Winter Olympic Games open in St. Moritz, Switzerland. The Winter Olympic games have not been held since 1936 in Garmisch-Partenkirchen.
The British government announces that it will not allow Jews in Palestine to organize and train for their defense.
The United Nations begins a three-day period of mourning in honor of Gandhi.
Variations, Chaconne and Finale for orchestra by Norman Dello Joio (35) is performed for the first time, in Pittsburgh.
31 January 1948 After a funeral procession through Delhi, witnessed by as many as 1,000,000 people, the mortal remains of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi are cremated by the banks of the Jumna River.
1 February 1948 The Federation of Malaya is created by Great Britain. The nine Malay states are granted internal autonomy.
An Arab truck bomb destroys the offices of the Palestine Post in Jerusalem, killing one person and injuring 20.
2 February 1948 The Indian government outlaws all communal organizations and private armies.
US President Truman proposes a ten-point civil rights program to Congress.
3 February 1948 Arabs attack the Central Prison in Jerusalem but are repulsed by guards.
About 1,500,000 German workers strike in Baden-Württemberg, Hanover, and Hamburg against food shortages.
The US Congress responds to President Truman’s civil rights proposals. He is accused of “stabbing the south in the back” and “kissing the feet of minorities.”
The Supreme Court of Chile rules that Senator Pablo Neruda must stand trial for criticizing the government. He will disappear tomorrow.
4 February 1948 Ceylon (Sri Lanka) is declared independent of Great Britain, under King George and Prime Minister Don Stephen Senanayake.
The Bulgarian Fatherland Front unites with four other parties, making the country a one-party state.
In general elections in Ireland, the ruling Fianna Fail Party loses eight seats and falls to an uneasy coalition lead by Fine Gael.
Cuatro madrigales amatorios, a cycle for voice and piano by Joaquín Rodrigo (46) to anonymous words, is performed for the first time, in Circulo Medina, Madrid, the composer at the piano. Also premiered is Rodrigo’s Barcarola for voice and piano to words of Kamhi (Sra. Rodrigo), the poet at the piano.
5 February 1948 General Johannes Blaskowitz, commander of German forces in the Netherlands at the time of the surrender, kills himself by jumping off a balcony in Nuremberg shortly before his trial is to begin.
Joaquín Rodrigo (46) begins teaching his music history course at the University of Madrid.
6 February 1948 The Hungarian Parliament nationalizes all firms over 100 workers.
Otto von Stuelpnagel, the first military governor of Paris, kills himself in his cell at Cherche-Midi Prison, Paris.
7 February 1948 Communist-led strikes and sabotage in southern Korea against transportation and communication causes 27 deaths and 150 arrests. About 50 locomotives are destroyed.
France and Spain agree to reopen their common border, which has been closed for two years.
8 February 1948 The Fifth Winter Olympic Games close in St. Moritz, Switzerland. In ten days of competition, 669 athletes from 28 countries took part.
The Southern Governors’ Conference, meeting in Wakulla Springs, Florida, names a committee to fight for “white supremacy.” The committee is led by Governor J. Strom Thurmond of South Carolina.
10 February 1948 Stalin sends an ultimatum to Tito requiring Yugoslavia to immediately form a federation with Bulgaria and sign an agreement to prior consultation with the USSR on all foreign policy matters.
British authorities stop Arabs from bringing firebombs and dynamite into the Old City of Jerusalem to blow up the Jewish Quarter.
Leftist rebels fire artillery shells into the heart of Thessaloniki, killing four people.
At a ceremony in the Kremlin, Sergey Prokofiev (56) is raised to the status of People’s Artist of the USSR. At the same time, the Central Committee of the CPSU is voting a resolution attacking Prokofiev, Dmitri Shostakovich (41), Aram Khachaturian (44) and other leading composers of the USSR. See 5 November 1947 and 11 February 1948.
11 February 1948 An article appears in the Communist Party daily Pravda entitled “On the opera The Great Friendship by Muradeli.” It attacks Sergey Prokofiev (56), Dmitri Shostakovich (41), and others who “persistently adhere to formalist perversion and many undemocratic tendencies. These include atonalism, dissonance, contempt for melody, and the use of chaotic and neuropathic dischords--all of which are alien to the artistic tastes of the Soviet peoples.”
The Royal Navy intercepts a Jewish refugee ship off Nahariya. The 679 passengers are transferred to Cyprus.
Sergey Mikhailovich Eisenstein dies of a heart attack in his Moscow apartment, aged 50 years.
12 February 1948 At the end of a 13-day mourning period in India and Pakistan, the ashes of Mohandas K. Gandhi are given to the Ganges in a ceremony at Allahabad.
14 February 1948 Order no.17 of the Chief Direction in Control of Representations and Repertoire of the Commission in Charge of the Arts under the Auspices of the Council of Ministers of the USSR is issued. It bans a long list of music by Sergey Prokofiev (56), Dmitri Shostakovich (41), and many other prominent Soviet composers. See 16 March 1949.
A public rehearsal of Trois Tâla by Olivier Messiaen (39) takes place at the Paris Conservatoire. Afterwards, Pierre Boulez (22) goes backstage and tells his teacher Messiaen that the piece makes him want to vomit. The relationship between the two will be cool for a few years.
15 February 1948 Movements 3, 4, and 5 of Turangalila-Symphonie by Olivier Messiaen (39) are performed for the first time, under the name Trois Tâla, at the Paris Conservatoire. See 2 December 1949.
16 February 1948 Arabs attack Tirat Ziv in northern Palestine but are repulsed.
Working at the McDonald Observatory in Texas, American astronomer Gerard Kuiper discovers Miranda, the fifth moon of Uranus to be observed from Earth.
The National Broadcasting Company begins airing its first regular news program, The Camel Newsreel Theatre. It consists of Fox Movietone newsreels.
Authorities in Quebec close two leftist newspapers under a law for the suppression of Communism.
17 February 1948 At a meeting of the All-Moscow Composers’ Union, Sergey Prokofiev’s (56) Sixth Symphony, Ode on the End of the War and Festive Poem are branded as worthless and evil.
President Gabriel González Videla of Chile lands at Discovery Bay on Antarctica to press his country’s claim to the area. It is also claimed by Great Britain. He is the first head of state to visit Antarctica.
18 February 1948 John Aloysius Costello of Fine Gael replaces Eamon de Valera of Fianna Fail as Prime Minister of Eire.
Physical Review receives a letter from Ralph Alpher, Hans Bethe, and George Gamow which reconciles the Big Bang Theory with observations.
20 February 1948 Twelve Jewish terrorists escape from the Central Prison in Jerusalem.
Eleven non-Communist members of the Czechoslovak cabinet resign. They are protesting the giving of all important police positions to Communists.
Lina (Llubera) Prokovieva, first wife of Sergey Prokofiev (56) is arrested off a Moscow street, charged with attempting to defect, stealing a secret document, and ties to a foreign embassy. She will not return to Moscow for eight years and will never see Prokofiev again.
L’âme heureuse, a ballet by Charles Koechlin (80) cobbled together from earlier compositions to a scenario by Charrat, is performed for the first time, at the Opéra-Comique, Paris.
Three Bagatelles for piano by Arthur Berger (35) is performed for the first time, over the airwaves of radio station WNYC, originating in New York.
21 February 1948 Communist forces capture Anshan south of Mukden.
Police in Prague, mostly communists, take over the radio stations, post offices, telegraph offices and railroad stations. The chairman of the Slovak government, Gustav Husak, removes non-communist ministers and replaces them with communists.
Dr. Karl Folkers and others administer a B12 substitute to a woman near death with pernicious anemia. She will soon recover. The disease is conquered.
Suite for woodwind quartet by Henry Cowell (50) is performed for the first time, in McMillin Theatre, Columbia University, New York.
22 February 1948 Arab truck bombs explode on Ben-Yehuda Street in Jerusalem, killing 46 people and injuring 130. An entire block is destroyed.
A Piano Sonata by Werner Egk (46) is performed for the first time, in Berlin.
23 February 1948 Hitoshi Ashida replaces Tetsu Katayama as Prime Minister of Japan.
Czechoslovak authorities announces the “discovery” of a plot by anti-Communists to overthrow the government. They raid the headquarters of the National Socialist Party and remove the Slovak Democratic Party from the Slovak cabinet. Citizens are forbidden from leaving the country without permission.
24 February 1948 Armed Czechoslovak communist workers take to the streets to forestall a counterrevolution. Anti-Communists are purged from office in government and communications. Foreigners are forbidden to enter the country.
Virgil Thomson’s (51) orchestral work The Seine at Night is performed for the first time, in the Music Hall, Kansas City, Missouri.
25 February 1948 Workers fill Wenceslas Square in support of the Communists. Czechoslovak President Edvard Benes accepts the resignations of some non-communist cabinet ministers. Prime Minister Gottwald replaces them with communists, thus completing the “February Coup.” Student protests against the new government are dispersed by police.
27 February 1948 Czechoslovak President Edvard Benes swears in the new cabinet.
28 February 1948 The last British troops depart from India.
John Cage (35) gives a lecture at Vassar College entitled “A Composer’s Confessions” wherein he mentions his idea of writing a silent composition of anywhere from three to four-and-a-half minutes. He will sell it to the Muzak Company.
Suite no.2 for orchestra by Walter Piston (54) is performed for the first time, in Dallas.
29 February 1948 Greek government forces capture Kakavi near Albania.
Czechoslovak Prime Minister Klement Gottwald declares that all landholdings larger than 50 hectares will be broken up.
Jews destroy a Cairo-Haifa train near Rehoveth killing 28 and injuring 35.
Violin Concerto no.2 by David Diamond (32) is performed for the first time, in Vancouver.
1 March 1948 The Central Committee of the Yugoslav Communist Party rejects Stalin’s ultimatum of 10 February.
The “Bizone” Central Bank is opened in Frankfurt-am-Main.
The Congress of Costa Rica votes to annul the disputed presidential election of 8 February.
Members of the House Un-American Activities Committee accuse Dr. Edward Condon, Director of the National Bureau of Standards, as “one of the weakest links in our atomic security.” He has already been cleared by a Commerce Department investigation.
2 March 1948 Stern Gang members detonate a truck bomb outside an Arab office building in Haifa, killing 14 people.
The British government expresses pessimism that the Jewish-Arab conflict in Palestine will ever be decided peacefully and that they will withdraw by 15 May.
3 March 1948 The Czechoslovak ambassadors to Canada, Turkey, and the United States resign their posts along with some of their staff.
Three Harvest Home Chorales for chorus, brass, timpani, and organ by Charles Ives (73) to words of Burgess, Gurney, and Alford, are performed for the first time, in Carnegie Hall, New York, approximately 50 years after they were composed.
4 March 1948 Arabs kill 17 young Jews near Ramallah.
5 March 1948 Haganah forces kill 15 armed Arabs near Tel Aviv.
6 March 1948 1,000 British troops, 500 policemen, and 300 dependents depart from Haifa.
The Birmingham, Alabama Board of Education bans Scholastic Magazine because it favors President Truman’s civil rights program.
Two Shorts and a Long for piano by Kenneth Gaburo (21) is performed for the first time, at the Eastman School of Music, Rochester, New York.
7 March 1948 Two American employees of the US Consulate in Saigon are murdered by members of the Viet Minh. They mistake them for French women.
Leonard Bernstein (29) resigns as music director of the New York City Symphony in protest against budget cuts.
8 March 1948 The Russian Question, a film with music by Aram Khachaturian (44), is released.
10 March 1948 Czechoslovak Foreign Minister Jan Masaryk, the highest ranking non-communist in the government, is found dead beneath the window of his residence in the Foreign Ministry building, Prague. Officially a suicide, foul play by the USSR is strongly suspected.
48-year-old Zelda Fitzgerald dies in a fire at Highland Hospital, Asheville, North Carolina where she is a patient.
11 March 1948 An Arab car bomb explodes outside the offices of the Jewish Foundation Fund in Jerusalem. 13 people are killed, 40 injured.
12 March 1948 The Arab High Commission in Palestine charges that the Jewish Agency has “set up laboratories for bacteriological warfare.”
Frammenti Sinfonici dal Balletto “Marsia” for orchestra by Luigi Dallapiccola (44) is performed for the first time, over the airwaves of Belgian Radio, originating in Brussels.
Habeyssée op.110, a suite for violin and orchestra by Florent Schmitt (77), is performed for the first time, in Paris.
Four Transcriptions from Emerson for piano by Charles Ives (73) is performed for the first time, in Town Hall, New York approximately 30 years after it was composed.
15 March 1948 Czinka Panna, a singspiel by Zoltán Kodály (65) to words of Balázs, is performed for the first time, at the Hungarian State Opera in Budapest. The work wins the Kossuth Prize today.
Sinfonietta no.2 for orchestra by Heitor Villa-Lobos (61) is performed for the first time, in Rome conducted by the composer.
16 March 1948 Former US State Department official Alger Hiss testifies before a federal grand jury in New York that he is not a communist and does not know Whittaker Chambers.
17 March 1948 Representatives of Belgium, France, Great Britain, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands sign a mutual defense treaty at Brussels.
18 March 1948 Chinese nationalist forces recapture Loyang (Luoyang), which the Communists took two days ago.
The Soviet Union recalls its military advisors from Yugoslavia.
Partita for piano by Arthur Berger (35) is performed for the first time, at Sarah Lawrence College, Bronxville, New York.
19 March 1948 The United States ambassador to the United Nations makes a speech calling partition of Palestine untenable and supporting trusteeship, to the shock of US President Truman and the rest of the world. It is a complete reversal of the US position.
20 March 1948 Soviet representatives walk out of the four-power Allied Control Council for Germany. Marshal Vassily Sokolovsky says that the Council “no longer exists as an organ of government.”
Given the non-cooperation of Yugoslavia, France, Great Britain, and the United States announce that they favor the reintegration of Trieste into Italy. The move is seen as an attempt to help non-communist parties in the upcoming Italian elections.
Partita for double string orchestra by Ralph Vaughan Williams (75) is performed for the first time, over the airwaves of the BBC. The work is a revision of his Double Trio. See 21 January 1939.
The first television broadcast of a major symphony orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra under Eugene Ormandy, takes place, followed one hour later by the NBC Symphony Orchestra under Arturo Toscanini.
21 March 1948 Papagaio do moleque for orchestra by Heitor Villa-Lobos (61) is performed for the first time, in the Maison Gaveau, Paris, under the baton of the composer.
24 March 1948 In a signing ceremony in Havana, the International Trade Organization is created by the United Nations.
25 March 1948 US President Truman qualifies the statements on Palestine made 19 March.
Nicaragua formally ends its aid to the Costa Rican government and withdraws its troops from the country.
26 March 1948 West Bengal outlaws the Communist Party and begins arresting about 400 alleged Communists.
27 March 1948 Arabs attack a truck convoy near Kabiri killing 45 Jews.
The Belgian government grants women equal political rights with men.
28 March 1948 In elections today for the National Assembly in Romania, 91% of the popular vote reportedly goes to the Communist Party and its allies.
30 March 1948 Denmark grants internal autonomy to the Faeroe Islands.
The USSR informs the western powers that it will begin inspecting all rail and highway traffic between the western occupation zones and Berlin.
Great Britain and the United States end most price controls in Bizonal Germany.
31 March 1948 Soviet authorities stop a Berlin-bound British train at Marienborn. The British refuse to allow the Soviets on board.
Jews blow up a train near Haifa killing 40 Arabs and injuring 60.
WH Auden hands over to Igor Stravinsky (65) the completed libretto to The Rake’s Progress in Washington, DC. At the same time, Stravinsky meets Robert Craft, the man who will champion his music for the rest of his life.
1 April 1948 Soviet administrators in their German occupation zone begin turning back highway, rail and river traffic to and from Berlin, citing “technical difficulties.” The process slowly escalates over three months. Today the United States flies about 7,000 kg of food into the city.
Electricity is nationalized in Great Britain.
A paper appears in the journal Physical Review written by George Gamow and Ralph Alpher. It describes a quantitative analysis for the Big Bang.
Symphony no.1 by Witold Lutoslawski (35) is performed for the first time, over the airwaves of Polish Radio, originating in Katowice. See 6 April 1948.
2 April 1948 Constantin Parhon replaces Mihai Sadoveanu as Chairman of the Presidium of Romania.
Des simplicius simplicissimus Jugend, a chamber opera by Karl Amadeus Hartmann (42) to words of Scherchen, Petzet, and the composer after von Grimmelshausen, is performed for the first time, in a concert setting in Munich. Also premiered is Hartmann’s Symphony no.4 for strings. See 20 October 1949 and 9 July 1957.
3 April 1948 Jews capture Kastel, west of Jerusalem.
After Congress debated the issue for three months, US President Truman signs the Foreign Assistance Act of 1948. Most of the appropriation is $5,300,000,000 for the Marshall Plan for European recovery. It also includes military aid for China, Greece, and Turkey, non-military aid for China, and money for UNICEF.
John Cage (35) makes his first visit to Black Mountain College in North Carolina. Here he will perform music to accompany dances by Merce Cunningham.
4 April 1948 Arabs begin bombarding kibbutz Mishmar Ha’emek, southeast of Haifa.
Duett-Concertino for clarinet, bassoon, strings, and harp by Richard Strauss (83) is performed for the first time, over the airwaves of Radio-Svizzera-Italiana originating in Lugano.
5 April 1948 Alfred Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach and eleven other directors of the Krupp munitions company are acquitted of conspiring to start the war and helping Hitler wage it. They remain on trial in Nuremberg for plundering occupied countries and using slave labor.
Romance del Comendador de Ocaña for soprano and orchestra by Joaquín Rodrigo (46) to words of Lope de Vega, is performed for the first time, in Teatro Español, Madrid.
6 April 1948 A mutual defense and friendship treaty between Finland and the USSR is signed in Moscow. The Soviets pledge not to interfere in Finland’s internal affairs if they remain neutral.
Symphony no.1 by Witold Lutoslawski (35) is performed before a live audience for the first time, in Katowice. See 1 April 1948.
Sonatas and Interludes for piano by John Cage (35) is performed completely for the first time, at Black Mountain College in North Carolina. See 11 January 1949.
7 April 1948 Chinese Communists capture Loyang (Luoyang).
The constitution for the World Health Organization (WHO) comes into effect.
Arabs recapture Kastel from the Jews who took it 3 April.
8 April 1948 Plaek Pibulsongkram replaces Khuang Aphaiwong as Prime Minister of Siam.
Fighting for the villages surrounding kibbutz Mishmar Ha’emek begins, southeast of Haifa.
The Boston Symphony Orchestra announces that its music director, Serge Koussevitzky, will retire next year and be replaced by Charles Munch.
9 April 1948 Jews retake Kastel from Arabs who captured it 7 April. They also take nearby Deir Yassin, killing a significant portion of the inhabitants in the process.
The European Recovery Program (Marshall Plan) goes into effect.
13:00 Jorge Eliécer Gaitán, leader of the Colombian Liberal Party, is shot to death outside his law office in Bogotá. Bystanders immediately beat the assassin to death, so viciously that identification becomes impossible. Mobs, blaming Conservatives for the murder, go on a rampage through Bogotá, killing 2,000 people, setting fires and causing great damage. Government buildings are invaded, including the Capitol building where Western Hemisphere diplomats are engaged in the Conference of American States. They are particularly seeking Conservative Foreign Minister Laureano Gómez who takes refuge in the US embassy. Fighting spreads to other cities in the country. This event is seen as the beginning of a brutal ideological civil war called La violenca which will last for 18 years.
Knoxville: Summer of 1915 for voice and orchestra by Samuel Barber (38) to words of Agee, is performed for the first time, in Boston.
10 April 1948 Egyptian irregulars attack the Negev kibbutz Kfar Darom with tanks and infantry but will be beaten off tomorrow.
Arabs begin firing artillery shells into the New City of Jerusalem.
14 former SS officers convicted yesterday for their part in the deaths of 2,000,000 Soviet citizens, are sentenced to death in a US court in Nuremberg. Two are sentenced to life imprisonment and five receive shorter prison terms.
11 April 1948 Orchestersonate no.1 by Werner Egk (46) is performed for the first time, in Darmstadt, conducted by the composer.
A group supporting the insurrection of José Figueres captures Limón, Costa Rica.
The Colombian government announces that it has taken control of most city centers throughout the country.
12 April 1948 Arabs begin a wholesale retreat from Mishmar Ha’emek.
Joaquín Rodrigo (46) is awarded the Cervantes Grand Prize for his tone poem Ausencias de Dulcinea. See 19 April 1948.
13 April 1948 A new Romanian constitution on the Soviet model is approved by Parliament.
Battling factions in the civil war in Costa Rica agree to a cease-fire.
As a convoy of clearly marked medical vehicles carrying 104 Jewish doctors, nurses, and medical students makes its way to Hadassah Hospital on Mt. Scopus, Jerusalem, Arabs attack. Only 28 Jews survive. British troops make only minimal attempts to intervene.
600 rebel policemen surrender in Bogotá, thus ending the violence which began 9 April.
Two Chinese Songs op.29 by Vincent Persichetti (32) are performed for the first time, in Town Hall, New York.
14 April 1948 The British House of Commons votes to abolish the death penalty for murder, but retains it for treason, piracy, and sabotage.
A committee of the US Senate issues a report on its investigation of wartime military procurement. It calls the relationship between Howard Hughes and Maj. General Bennett Myers “obviously corrupt.” Hughes’ reconnaissance plane and flying boat are called “failures.” It criticizes the Army Air Force for not checking on his contracts more vigorously.
15 April 1948 President Manuel Roxas y Acuña of the Philippines dies of a heart attack at Clark Field after making a speech to US Air Force officers.
16 April 1948 Elpidio Quirino y Rivera replaces Manuel Roxas y Acuña as President of the Philippines.
As British troops withdraw from Safed (Zefat) north of the Sea of Galilee, Arabs begin bombarding the Jewish quarter.
The Greek army begins an offensive against leftist rebels in the north of the country.
The Organization for European Economic Development is founded by Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany (western occupation zones), Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland, Trieste, Turkey, and the United Kingdom. It will become the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in 1961.
The United Nations General Assembly opens an emergency session to deal with the situation in Palestine.
17 April 1948 I Looked Back Suddenly, a song for voice and piano by Hugo Weisgall (35) to words of Wolfe, is performed for the first time, in New York.
18 April 1948 The Chinese National Assembly votes a “temporary amendment” to the constitution giving President Chiang Kai-shek leave to run the country as he sees fit.
Jews attack out of surrounded Tiberias (Teverya), on the Sea of Galilee and succeed in cutting the Arab districts of the town in two. The Arab population flees.
19 April 1948 The first All-Union congress of Soviet Composers meets in Moscow. They condemn Benjamin Britten (34), Gian-Carlo Menotti (36), and Olivier Messiaen (39) as being “impregnated with extreme subjectivism, mysticism, and disgusting facetiousness.”
Haganah announces that Tiberias (Teverya) is completely under Jewish control.
Voting held today and yesterday in Italy give a clear victory to conservative and centrist parties in opposition to communists and fascists. Western powers feared a good showing by Communists would lead Italy into Soviet hands.
The Union of Burma is admitted to the United Nations.
President Teodoro Picado Michalski of Costa Rica gives up the fight against rebels led by José Figueres. He calls the rebels “patriots of unquestioned honesty” and goes into exile in Nicaragua.
Ausencias de Dulcinea for bass-baritone, four sopranos, and orchestra by Joaquín Rodrigo (46) to words of Cervantes is performed for the first time, in Teatro Español, Madrid.
20 April 1948 As the British withdraw from their cease-fire positions in Haifa to a perimeter covering only the port, Jews attack Arab positions at the Rashmiyah Bridge.
The British announce that all water traffic from its occupation zone and Berlin has been stopped by the Soviet Union.
Santos León Herrera becomes acting President of Costa Rica at the head of a provisional government until a new president can be chosen.
21:55 A shotgun blast rips through a window at the home of United Auto Workers president Walter Reuther in Detroit. Reuther is seriously wounded in the arm and chest, but will survive. Detroit Police use the attack as an excuse to harass leftists in the union. The perpetrators will never be identified.
21 April 1948 As part of ongoing experiments into recording of sound at Radiodiffusion Télevision Française, Pierre Schaeffer (37) discovers that by placing a volume control between the microphone and disc cutter, he is able to remove the attack from recorded bell tones.
The UN Security Council approves a plan for a plebiscite in Kashmir on its future.
Symphony no.6 by Ralph Vaughan Williams (75) is performed for the first time, in the Royal Albert Hall, London.
22 April 1948 Arab leaders in Haifa agree to peace terms including Jewish domination of the city. Four-fifths of Haifa’s Arab population flees in panic.
Leonard Bernstein (29) sails from New York aboard RMS Queen Mary. He is to conduct in several European cities, and then take up duties as the artistic director of the Palestine Philharmonic Orchestra.
Wood Notes for orchestra by William Grant Still (52) is performed for the first time, in Orchestra Hall, Chicago.
23 April 1948 Arabs claim a “massacre” took place in Haifa, but the British commander states that Arab casualties were limited to about 100 killed, 100 injured in combat.
The Arab High Commission for Palestine advises the UN Security Council that a truce is not possible as long as Jews insist on abiding by the UN plan for partition.
Dreams that Money Can Buy, a film with music by Darius Milhaud (55), John Cage (35) and David Diamond (33), is released in the United States. It was shown at the Venice Film Festival last September.
24 April 1948 Dmitri Shostakovich (41) addresses the First All-Union Congress of Soviet Composers. He repents the sin of “formalism” and accepts the direction of the Party vowing to make folkloric melody the foundation of all his future works.
Victorious rebel José Figueres enters San José, Costa Rica after defeating holdouts against the 19 April peace agreement.
25 April 1948 Irgunists begin an attack on Jaffa.
Jews withdraw from Lydda.
26 April 1948 All Czechoslovak businesses over 49 employees are nationalized.
King Abdullah of Transjordan communicates with the British government in Palestine, demanding complete sovereignty over the entire mandate. He says that he will lead an invasion with other Arab League states before the expiration of the mandate.
The British authorities in Palestine end press censorship.
The Jewish National Council in Tel Aviv announces a provisional government for the Jewish state headed by David Ben Gurion. It is to take power immediately on the expiration of the mandate.
Jews begin an offensive in Jerusalem by assaulting the Arab town of An Nabi Samu’il north of the city. They are repulsed. Jews make advances into the Katamon district in the south of Jerusalem against Iraqis.
Night. Jews capture the Sheikh Jarrah district of Jerusalem only to be forced by the British to withdraw as it is on their evacuation route. Upon withdrawal, the British will return the area to Jewish control.
27 April 1948 Chinese Communists capture Weihsien (Weixian) in Shantung (Shandong) Province.
An Iraqi counterattack into Katamon fails. The Jews complete their conquest of this district of Jersusalem.
Arabs loot and burn the customs house at Lydda airport.
The Stern Gang relieves Barclay’s Bank in Tel Aviv of $1,000,000.
Haganah and Irgun reach an agreement. Irgun will operate under the supervision of Haganah. With the agreement concluded, Haganah moves to support the Irgunists in Jaffa, capturing several suburbs.
28 April 1948 All Czechoslovak construction, apartments, and radio stations are nationalized.
Jews capture the Arab villages of Ein Aeitun and Biria, west of Safed (Zefat), thus breaking the Arab siege of the Jewish quarter of Safed.
Jewish successes in Jaffa are halted when British planes go into action against them. The Jews threaten the harbor which is being used by the British for evacuation.
Orpheus, a ballet by Igor Stravinsky (65), is performed for the first time, at the City Center, New York conducted by the composer.
29 April 1948 Dawn. On the fourth day of the Battle for Jaffa, Jewish attackers reach the sea and complete the encirclement of the city.
30 April 1948 British forces enter the Battle for Jaffa on the side of the Arabs. Their tank assault is halted by Jewish infantry.
Land Rover automobiles are introduced at the Amsterdam Auto Show.
The public prosecutor in Munich decides not to appeal the court decision of 17 October 1947 exonerating Werner Egk (46).
The charter of the Organization of American States is signed in Bogotá by representatives of Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, the United States, Uruguay, and Venezuela. It will take effect 13 December 1951.
1 May 1948 Reinforced British troops resume their attacks with tanks and planes against the Jews in Jaffa. After furious fighting, the British withdraw. Arab residents and fighters begin fleeing the city in hordes.
As he exits a church in Athens, Christos Ladas, Justice Minister of Greece, is assassinated. He is overseeing the arrest, deportation and execution of thousands of Greek citizens believed to hold left-of-center views. Mikis Theodorakis (22) is arrested at his parents’ home. He will be charged with crimes his 15 cellmates are charged with and sentenced to exile on the island of Ikaria.
Man in his labour rejoiceth for chorus and brass by John Ireland (68) to words of Bridges is performed for the first time, in Harringay Arena, London.
3 May 1948 In the case of Shelley v. Kraemer, the United States Supreme Court rules that courts may not enforce racially restrictive housing covenants.
Walter Piston (54) wins the Pulitzer Prize in Music for his Symphony no.3. See 9 January 1948.
4 May 1948 Transjordanian armor and local infantry attack the Etzion settlements southeast of Jerusalem. Greatly outnumbered, the Jews repulse the attack.
The Naked and the Dead, Norman Mailer’s first novel, is published.
Symphony no.4 by Bernard Rogers (55) is performed for the first time, in Rochester, New York conducted by Howard Hanson (51).
5 May 1948 Jews begin a major offensive into northeastern Palestine.
Dalton Trumbo, one of the Hollywood Ten, is found guilty of contempt of Congress.
Evangeline, an opera by Otto Luening (47) to his own words after Longfellow, is performed for the first time, at Brander Matthews Theatre, Columbia University, New York conducted by the composer.
6 May 1948 A Jewish attack on Safed fails.
The Greek government announces that they have executed 213 people who took part in the leftist revolt of 1944. Some of those killed were accused of killing collaborators with the Germans.
The High Court of Justice Investigating Committee in Paris exonerates Gen. Maxim Weygand of collaboration with the Germans.
Hamlet, a film with music by William Walton (46), is shown publicly for the first time, in the Odeon Theatre, Leicester Square, London.
7 May 1948 The law of last 6 December, banning strikes under penalty of death, is repealed by the Greek government.
Longing for Jerusalem for tenor, chorus, and organ by David Diamond (32) to words of Jehuda Ha-Levi is performed for the first time, in the Park Avenue Synagogue, New York.
8 May 1948 Former Prime Minister U Saw and five others are hanged in Rangoon for the murder of Prime Minister U Aung San and six others last July.
Haganah effectively controls northern Palestine.
A cease-fire is agreed to by all three sides in Jericho.
José Figueres replaces Santos León Herrera at the head of and eleven-man junta to govern Costa Rica.
The United States Supreme Court rules that agreements barring African-Americans from buying or living on land are legally unenforceable.
9 May 1948 The Czechoslovak National Assembly approves a new constitution based on the Soviet model. The country is now a people’s democratic republic.
In a radio address, Governor Fielding Wright of Mississippi urges blacks desirous of equality to “make your home in some other state than Mississippi.”
Brief Elegy for oboe and strings by Ulysses Kay (31) is performed for the first time, at the National Gallery of Art, Washington.
Vincent Persichetti (32) plays a farewell organ recital at the Arch Street Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia where he has been organist for 16 years.
10 May 1948 Koreans residing in the US occupation zone go to the polls to elect a National Assembly. It is the first election by universal adult suffrage and the first use of the secret ballot in the history of Korea.
Jews begin an all-out attack against Arab positions in Safed (Zefat). After fierce fighting, the Arabs flee.
22 hours before a scheduled nationwide strike, US President Truman seizes the railroads. The strike is called off.
11 May 1948 Hymn, Chorale and Fuguing Tune no.8 for string quartet by Henry Cowell (51) is performed for the first time, at Florida State University, California.
12 May 1948 Transjordanian armor and infantry begin an all-out assault on the Etzion settlements southeast of Jerusalem.
Luigi Einaudi replaces Enrico de Nicola as President of Italy.
The Southern Methodist Church announces in Columbia, South Carolina that racial segregation is “the will of God.”
Prayer to the Father of Heaven for chorus by Ralph Vaughan Williams (75) to words of Skelton is performed for the first time, in the Sheldonian Theatre, Oxford.
13 May 1948 As British troops leave Jaffa, Jewish forces move in and take control of the city.
Kfar Etzion, 18 km southeast of Jerusalem surrenders to attacking Arabs. About 35 Jews are murdered by Arabs after surrendering.
In Damascus, the Arab League declares war on all Jews in Palestine.
Mass for male chorus and organ by Roy Harris (50) is performed for the first time, in St. Paul’s Chapel, Columbia University, New York.
14 May 1948 Noon. British troops withdraw from Jerusalem. Immediately, Arabs and Jews begin to battle for the city.
16:06 David Ben-Gurion, leader of the provisional Jewish government in Palestine, proclaims the State of Israel, in a secret radio broadcast from the Tel Aviv Museum of Art. Eleven minutes later, the new government receives recognition by the United States.
Jews capture Kadesh and Malkieh near the Lebanese border but the Lebanese launch a fierce counterattack. The Jews retreat in good order.
Evening. Arabs drive Jews from the Zion Gate, thus isolating the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem.
20:00 The Jews of Massuot Yitzhak, one of the Etzion settlements southeast of Jerusalem, surrender to the Arabs.
15 May 1948 Midnight. The British mandate over Palestine ends.
00:11 The armed forces of Egypt, Transjordan, Syria, Lebanon, and Iraq, along with local Arab irregulars, rejecting the United Nations partition plan, invade the newly proclaimed State of Israel. Invading Egyptians attack kibbutz Nirim, southwest of Gaza but are beaten off. They lay siege to nearby kibbutz Kefar Darom. Syrian troops attack Samakh (Zemah) at the southern end of the Sea of Galilee but are repulsed. Transjordanian troops occupy Jericho.
17:15 Arabs begin bombarding the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem.
Chaim Weizmann is named first Head of State of Israel.
Pierre Schaeffer (37) writes, “This determination to compose with materials taken from an existing collection of experimental sounds, I name musique concrète to mark well the place in which we find ourselves, no longer dependent upon preconceived sound abstractions, but now using fragments of sound existing concretely and considered as sound objects defined and whole...”
Aaron Copland (47) becomes chairman of the League of Composers in New York.
16 May 1948 Arabs launch a ground assault against the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem.
Iraqi troops cross the Jordan and lay siege to Gesher.
Symphony no.3 by Wallingford Riegger (63) is performed for the first time, in New York.
17 May 1948 David Ben-Gurion becomes first Prime Minister of the State of Israel.
In a surprise attack, Israeli troops take Malkieh near Lebanon.
The USSR recognizes the State of Israel.
e.e. cummings Songs op.26 for voice and piano by Vincent Persichetti (32) are performed for the first time, at the Philadelphia Art Alliance.
18 May 1948 Syrian armor overruns Samakh (Zemah) at the southern end of the Sea of Galilee.
19 May 1948 03:25 In the midst of the battle for the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem, Israeli sappers blow a hole in the Zion Gate thus providing reinforcements to the besieged defenders.
Egyptian troops attack kibbutz Yad Mordechai, northeast of Gaza.
Syrians walk into Shaar Hagolan and Masada south of Samakh (Zemah) without opposition.
Israeli troops attack Acre (Akko).
Transjordanian forces attack the Sheikh Jarrah section of Jerusalem and support the defense of the Old City.
Leonard Bernstein (29) withdraws his resignation as conductor of the New York City Symphony.
20 May 1948 Syrians assault kibbutzim Degania, east of Samakh (Zemah) but are forced to retreat.
After bitter street-by-street resistance, the Arabs surrender Acre (Akko).
Count Folke Bernadotte, nephew of King Gustaf V of Sweden, is chosen by the UN to seek a mediated peace in the Middle East.
The United States requires all Soviet traffic into its German occupation zone to pass through Helmstedt in the British zone.
Symphony no.4 “1848” by Darius Milhaud (55) is performed for the first time, in Paris, under the baton of the composer.
21 May 1948 Israeli forces reoccupy Samakh (Zemah), Shaar Hagolan and Masada without opposition.
The Yugoslav government nationalizes all retail establishments except cafes, pharmacies, and shops which produce their own merchandise.
Screenwriters Dalton Trumbo and John Howard Lawson are sentenced to one year in jail and $1,000 fines for refusing to tell Congress whether or not they were communists.
Solitude for chorus by György Ligeti (24) to words of Weöres is performed for the first time, in Budapest.
First Suite for Strings by Lou Harrison (31) is performed for the first time, at the National Institute of Arts and Letters as part of a ceremony awarding creative grants to Harrison, Henry Cowell (51), and Vincent Persichetti.
Danzas de Panama for string quartet by William Grant Still (53) is performed for the first time, in the Los Angeles County Museum.
22 May 1948 Arab irregulars attack kibbutz Ramat Rachel, which commands the southern approach to Jerusalem. They virtually destroy the settlement but Jewish reinforcements chase them off.
A Transjordanian attack from the north of Jerusalem blunders into withering Israeli defense near the Mandelbaum Gate.
US Consul General in Jerusalem, Thomas C. Wasson, is fatally wounded by a sniper. He will die tomorrow.
All royal property in Romania is confiscated by the government, including 159 castles. The immediate royal family is stripped of citizenship.
After debating military intervention for a week, the UN Security Council votes to request the warring sides in the Middle East to stop fighting.
Works for solo piano by György Ligeti (24) are performed for the first time, in Budapest: Two Capriccios and Invention for piano.
Incidental music to the radio documentary Broken Arrow by Colin McPhee (48) is performed for the first time, over the airwaves of the CBS radio network, originating in Minneapolis.
23 May 1948 Yesterday’s events at kibbutz Ramat Rachel are repeated.
Furious fighting takes place around Notre Dame de France at the entrance to the New City of Jerusalem. The Arabs gain a foothold in the building but are forced to withdraw.
String Quartet no.1 by Karel Husa (26) is performed for the first time, in Prague.
24 May 1948 Wong Wen-hao (Weng Wenhao) is named Prime Minister of the Republic of China.
After a furious defense of five days, the Israelis evacuate kibbutz Yad Mordechai, northeast of Gaza.
Egyptian, Transjordanian, and local Arab troops assault kibbutz Ramat Rachel for a third time. After initial gains, local Arabs arrive for an orgy of looting. The Transjordanians withdraw and the attack fails.
The Empire Windrush departs Kingston making for Tilbury, Essex. It carries 492 passengers from Trinidad and Jamaica, the first of the migration from the West Indies to the British Isles.
Benjamin Britten’s (34) ballad opera The Beggar’s Opera to words of Gay is performed for the first time, in Cambridge.
Trio for violin, cello, and piano by Charles Ives (73) is performed for the first time, at Baldwin-Wallace College, Berea, Ohio, 45 years after it was composed.
25 May 1948 Israeli forces assault Latrun, commanding the Jersualem-Ramla road. They retreat in disorderly fashion with high casualties.
Három Weöres-dal, three songs for voice and piano by György Ligeti (24) to words of Weöres, are performed for the first time, in Budapest, the composer at the keyboard.
Lob der Torheit, a cantata for vocal soloists, chorus, and orchestra by Bernd Alois Zimmermann (30) to words of Goethe, is performed for the first time, in Cologne.
26 May 1948 Elections in South Africa are a victory for the right wing National Party and its Afrikaner ally. They win 79 of 153 seats and will bring apartheid into being.
For the purposes of inheritance, the estate of Anton Webern (†2) is assessed in a district court ruling in Mödling. Total value: $24.52.
27 May 1948 Narayan Vinayak Godse and eight others are indicted in a New Delhi court for the murder of Mohandas K. Gandhi.
In a furious attack, Arabs capture one-third of the remaining territory of the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem. King Abdullah of Transjordan enters the Old City and is proclaimed “King of Jerusalem.”
Three Interludes for string orchestra by Kenneth Gaburo (21) is performed for the first time, in Rochester, New York, conducted by Howard Hanson (51).
28 May 1948 The Israelis agree to the surrender and evacuation of the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem. For the first time in 2,000 years there are no Jews in the Old City.
The Romanian government nationalizes all oil imports and exports.
Attorney-General of the United States, Tom C. Clark, publishes a list of 32 organizations he claims are “subversive.”
29 May 1948 The Second International Congress of Composers and Musicologists meeting in Prague, commits to the Soviet model of Socialist Realism. This will cause Witold Lutoslawski (35) to fall out of official favor. He will be dropped from the leadership of the Union of Polish Composers.
30 May 1948 Israeli forces make a second assault on Latrun, commanding the Jersualem-Ramla road. It fails.
Elections to a new 300-member Parliament take place in Czechoslovakia. All members returned are Communists or their allies.
William Walton (46) is awarded an honorary doctorate from Trinity College, Dublin.
31 May 1948 The newly elected Korean National Assembly convenes in Seoul and names Syngman Rhee chairman. Seats are reserved for representatives of the Soviet zone who boycotted the election.
A conference in London attended by France, the UK, the US, and the Benelux countries agrees to set up a limited German state in the three western occupation zones next year.
Adame miroir op.283, a ballet by Darius Milhaud (55) to a story of Genet, is performed for the first time, in Théâtre Marigny, Paris.
1 June 1948 Egyptian forces attack kibbutz Negba near Ashdod without success.
Nine Preludes op.231b for organ by Darius Milhaud (55) are performed for the first time, in Paris.
2 June 1948 Israeli troops attack the Egyptian column north of Ashdod but are repulsed with heavy losses.
Seven former SS and death camp staff are hanged in Landsberg Prison, west of Munich.
3 June 1948 The battle for Janin (Jenin), 75 km north of Jerusalem, between Israelis and Iraqis begins.
The world’s largest reflector telescope, the 200” (508 cm) Hale telescope at Palomar Mountain, California is dedicated.
A referendum in Newfoundland votes 44.6% for responsible government, 41.1% for confederation with Canada and 14.3% for continued government by commission.
4 June 1948 Daniel François Malan replaces Jan Christiaan Smuts as Prime Minister of South Africa.
After furious fighting, Israeli forces retire in good order from Janin (Jenin).
Israeli troops capture Kakun east of Netanya.
Duke Ellington (49) sails from New York aboard the Media for a tour of Great Britain. The British Musicians’ Union does not allow the band to perform so he is accompanied only by singer Kay Davis and musician/dancer Ray Nance.
5 June 1948 In a ceremony on a French cruiser off Haiphong, a provisional government for Vietnam is created, independent within the French Union.
Benjamin Britten’s (34) cantata St. Nicholas op.42 for vocal soloists, chorus, strings, percussion, and organ to words of Crozier is performed for the first time, at the opening of the first Aldeburgh Festival.
6 June 1948 Lebanese, Syrian, and other Arab forces push the Israelis out of Malkieh, near Lebanon.
Abraxas, a ballet by Werner Egk (47) to his own story after Heine, is performed for the first time, in the Bayerische Staatsoper, Munich.
7 June 1948 President Edvard Benes of Czechoslovakia resigns rather than sign the new communist constitution. Communist Klement Gottwald becomes acting President.
Egyptian forces overrun kibbutz Nitzanim near Ashdod.
8 June 1948 A Munich court absolves Richard Strauss (83) of any wrongdoing in his involvement with the Nazi regime.
Egyptian forces assault Israeli positions atop Hill 69, two km west of Nitzanim. The defenders retreat in disarray to Beit Daras.
Gunther Schuller (22) marries Marjorie Black, a music student, in New York.
The Texaco Star Theatre appears for the first time over the airwaves of NBC television. The first of its rotating hosts is Milton Berle. In September he becomes the permanent host.
9 June 1948 Israeli troops make a third assault on Latrun, commanding the Jersualem-Ramla road. It fails.
10 June 1948 Syrian troops capture Mishmar Hayarden, just across the Jordan.
Quartet for string instruments op.112 by Florent Schmitt (77) is performed for the first time, in Strasbourg.
11 June 1948 09:00 A United Nations cease-fire between Israel and the five Arab nations invading it goes into effect.
The Romanian government nationalizes transportation, industry, mining, insurance, and all remaining banks.
14 June 1948 Klement Gottwald, the communist prime minister, becomes President of Czechoslovakia.
15 June 1948 Australia ends rationing of meat and clothing.
Antonín Zápotocky replaces Klement Gottwald as Prime Minister of Czechoslovakia.
Soviet authorities halt all coal shipments by rail to Berlin.
A Presto for cello and piano by Leos Janácek (†19) is performed for the first time, in Brno 38 years after it was composed.
16 June 1948 The Hungarian Parliament nationalizes Catholic schools.
18 June 1948 Count Folke Bernadotte arrives on the island of Rhodes to begin Middle East peace negotiations.
The Soviet Union bans all road and rail passenger traffic from the West to Berlin.
Columbia Records, the Columbia Broadcasting System, and Philco demonstrate for the first time, in New York, an unbreakable twelve-inch vinylite disc called the LP Microgroove. The new technology was developed by Dr. Peter Goldmark, Director of CBS Engineering Research and Development Laboratories. It is capable of playing recorded music for 45 minutes.
19 June 1948 Chinese communist troops capture Kaifeng, 750 km northwest of Shanghai.
20 June 1948 The Royal Hellenic Air Force uses napalm for the first time, supplied by the United States, against leftist rebels in the Grammos Mountains.
Soviet troops stop US freight trains bound for Berlin. Rather than submit to inspection, the trains withdraw.
Toast of the Town, a weekly variety show from New York starring Ed Sullivan, makes its debut over the airwaves of CBS television. Later called The Ed Sullivan Show, it will run until 1971.
21 June 1948 Chakravarti Rajagopalacharia replaces Louis Francis Albert Victor Nicholas, Earl Mountbatten of Burma as Governor-General of India.
Haganah attacks Irgunists trying to clandestinely land arms near Natahya.
A single currency is instituted in the three western occupation zones of Germany.
SSEM or the Small-Scale Experimental Machine, designed and built at the University of Manchester, makes its first successful run of a program. It is the first machine that has all the components now regarded as characteristic of the computer. And it was the first computer that could store any user program in electronic memory and process it at electronic speed.
Duke Ellington (49) and his two companions begin a two-week engagement at London’s Palladium Theatre.
22 June 1948 Haganah shore batteries destroy an Irgun ship trying to clandestinely land arms at Tel Aviv.
After a Big Four meeting in Berlin ends in stalemate, the USSR announces that it will introduce currency reform in its sector of Germany, including all of Berlin.
23 June 1948 Irgun leader Menachem Begin announces that he does not recognize the Israeli government and calls David Ben-Gurion a “lunatic dictator.”
France, Great Britain, and the US announce that their western deutschmark will be introduced into the western sectors of Berlin.
24 June 1948 Soviet authorities ban all shipments of any kind between the west German occupation zones and Berlin. They also cut off all power to the western sectors of Berlin. Great Britain retaliates by ending shipments of coal and steel from the Ruhr to the Soviet occupation zone.
The Roman Catholic Church in Hungary excommunicates all members of the National Assembly who voted to nationalize Catholic schools.
US President Truman signs a bill reintroducing conscription.
Oliver Twist, a film with music by Arnold Bax (64), is shown for the first time, in the Odeon Theatre, Marble Arch, London. When the film is shown in Berlin next February, the showing is halted by Polish Jews who claim the character of Fagin is anti-Semitic. See 20 February 1949.
25 June 1948 The UK and the US end all shipments of any kind from western Germany to the Soviet occupation zone. The USSR ends all deliveries of food and fuel to western Berlin.
The Greek army captures Mt. Boufos after a week of fighting.
The Times of London reports that Viscountess Wimborne, who died last 19 April, left £10,000, her residence Lowndes Cottage, a Bentley, and other effects to William Walton (46). Alice Wimborne once hoped to marry Walton.
26 June 1948 US President Truman orders that all airplanes available to the European command be pressed into service to airlift vital supplies to the city of Berlin, now effectively blockaded by the Soviets.
28 June 1948 A series of earthquakes and fire destroys most of the city of Fukui, Japan. Over 3,000 are killed.
The Cominform makes charges against Yugoslavia and its leader, Josip Broz Tito, in an article in Rude Pravo, Prague. They accuse Tito of retreating from Marxism-Leninism and following a nationalistic, anti-Soviet line. It expels Yugoslavia from the Cominform and calls on Yugoslav communists to overthrow Tito.
A state of emergency is declared in Great Britain in the face of a wildcat strike by 19,000 dockworkers.
US President Truman signs a bill making available $6,030,710,228 in foreign aid, most of which will go to the European Recovery Program (Marshall Plan).
29 June 1948 A US Army court in Yokohama sentences Maj. General Yoshitaka Kawane and Colonel Kurataro Hirano to death for their part in the Bataan Death March.
South Africa bans interracial marriages.
The Communist Party of Yugoslavia denies all Cominform charges against it and makes counter-charges against the Soviet Union.
About 2,500 workers in Berlin try to take over the building housing the Soviet-run Radio Berlin but are turned back by police.
30 June 1948 Dockworkers in Great Britain return to work.
Bulgaria backs the Cominform stand against Yugoslavia.
1 July 1948 The Soviet Union withdraws from the Allied Command for Berlin and institutes a division between East and West Berlin.
Authorities in Hungary arrest Father Odon Lenard, secretary of the Catholic Action, and three other priests for “inciting against democracy.”
Idlewild Airport (officially New York International) is opened for business in New York.
2 July 1948 The communist Popular Democratic Union, suffers serious losses in a general election in Finland. They will be left out of the new coalition.
3 July 1948 Albania announces that it has ended trade relations with Yugoslavia and ordered various Yugoslav missions out of the country.
5 July 1948 The National Health Service goes into effect in Great Britain.
7 July 1948 British forces go into action against communist insurgents in three states of Malaya.
Parliamentary elections in the Netherlands leave the major parties virtually unchanged in strength.
A number of Los Angeles celebrities, including Igor Stravinsky (66) and Arnold Schoenberg (73), attend a dinner at the Beverly Hills Hotel for Alma Mahler Gropius Werfel. The two composers manage to avoid each other.
8 July 1948 The United Nations cease-fire between Israel and the Arabs ends 24 hours early, as Egyptian forces launch an offensive east from the coast toward Negba. The initial attack on Beit Daras fails.
The western allies impose electricity conservation measures on Berlin. The elevated railroad is closed. Residences are limited to four hours of electricity per day. Electricity to small businesses is ended.
9 July 1948 Egyptian troops attack the village of Julis, without success.
The Romanian government announces that all shipments of oil to Yugoslavia have ended.
With the resolution of a wage dispute coming yesterday, the US Army releases the nation’s railroads to their owners.
Heitor Villa-Lobos (61) enters Memorial Hospital of Sloan-Kettering Institute in New York where he will undergo surgery to treat cancer of the bladder.
10 July 1948 An Israeli attempt to retake Mishmar Hayarden in Galilee fails. A Syrian counterattack also fails. This begins nine days of fruitless attacks and counterattacks.
Israeli forces capture Lydda (Lod), 16 km southeast of Tel Aviv.
Egyptian troops attack the village of Julis, again without success.
Incidental music to Slowacki’s play Fantasy by Witold Lutoslawski (35) is performed for the first time, in Warsaw.
11 July 1948 One day after surrendering and promising to live in peace, Arab citizens of Lydda (Lod) rise up and begin killing Israelis. After much loss of life, the revolt is put down by the Israelis who then force all Moslem Arabs to leave the town.
12 July 1948 The National Assembly in Seoul adopts a constitution for Korea to take effect in August. Radio broadcasts from the north announce that a rival Korean government will be set up in the Soviet occupation zone.
Israeli troops capture Ramla without a shot fired and force the inhabitants to evacuate to Arab-held territory.
Egyptian forces attack Negba, east of Majdal (Ashkelon), without success. They are forced to withdraw.
13 July 1948 Der Herr vom andern Stern, a film with music by Werner Egk (47) is shown for the first time, in the Filmbühne Wien, Berlin.
14 July 1948 Palmiro Togliatti, leader of the Italian Communist Party, is shot in the head and chest outside the Chamber of Deputies in Rome by Antonio Pallante, a law student. This creates riots throughout the country over the next three days. Togliatti will survive.
15 July 1948 The United Nations Security Council votes to impose a second truce to take effect at 05:45 on 17 July for Jerusalem and 17:45 for the rest of the former mandate.
Kurt Weill’s (48) college opera Down in the Valley to words of Sundgaard is performed for the first time, at Indiana University in Bloomington. See 4 January 1950.
16 July 1948 Israeli troops take Nazareth against little resistance.
At the end of three days of rioting in Italy following the attempt on the life of Palmiro Togliatti, 21 people have died, 200 have been injured.
John Huston’s film Key Largo is shown for the first time, in New York.
17 July 1948 After the Israeli capture of Nazareth, the Arabs abandon central Galilee, retreating east.
Israeli troops assault the Old City of Jerusalem, blowing their way through the New Gate, but are forced to withdraw.
President José Figueres of Costa Rica outlaws the Communist Party.
A convention of southern Democrats meeting in Birmingham, Alabama nominates Governor J. Strom Thurmond of South Carolina and Governor Fielding L. Wright of Mississippi as candidates for President and Vice-President. One speaker criticizes President Truman’s civil rights program saying that it threatens “to make Southerners into a mongrel, inferior race by forced intermingling with Negroes.”
18 July 1948 Three hours before the cease-fire, the Israelis make a fourth attempt to take Latrun, on the Jerusalem-Ramla road, without success.
A second United Nations truce in the Arab-Israeli war goes into effect. In the ten days since the end of the first truce, Israeli forces have had important successes.
A mob in Cairo stones a vacationing American to death.
US B-29 bombers arrive in Great Britain carrying atomic weapons. They begin the permanent US nuclear presence in the country.
19 July 1948 Deirdre of the Shadows for piano by Henry Cowell (51) is performed for the first time, at Colorado State College in Greeley.
20 July 1948 A federal grand jury in New York indicts twelve members of the national board of the Communist Party of the United States for advocating the violent overthrow of the government.
Duke Ellington (49), his two companions, and a British trio perform at the Salle Pleyel, Paris.
22 July 1948 The Israelis begin to operate the Haifa oil refinery, which has been closed for seven months.
A second referendum in Newfoundland votes 52% for confederation with Canada, 48% for responsible territorial government.
23 July 1948 Great Britain outlaws the Communist Party in Malaya and Singapore.
DW Griffith dies in Hollywood at the age of 73.
24 July 1948 Syngman Rhee is inaugurated as President of the new Korean republic.
A convention of the newly founded Progressive Party meeting in Philadelphia, nominates former Vice-President Henry Wallace for President and Senator Glen Hearst Taylor for Vice-President.
25 July 1948 The rationing of bread ends in Great Britain.
Canção do marinheiro, the first of the Modinhas e canções Album no.1 for voice and piano by Heitor Villa-Lobos (61), to words of Vicente, is performed for the first time, in the Salão Leopoldo Miguez, Escola Nacional de Música, Rio de Janeiro.
26 July 1948 President Truman signs two executive orders mandating complete racial equality in the armed forces and the civil service of the United States.
The US Congress convenes in Washington, having been called back into session by President Truman.
Mississippi for chorus and piano by William Grant Still (53) to words of Arvey is performed for the first time, over the airwaves of the ABC radio network.
Magdalena, a musical comedy by Heitor Villa Lobos (61) to words of Forrest and Wright, is performed for the first time, in Los Angeles.
27 July 1948 André Marie replaces Robert Schuman as Prime Minister of France.
In a speech to the US Congress, President Truman challenges them to act on eleven bills still pending from the regular session.
29 July 1948 The Games of the Fourteenth Olympiad of the Modern Era open in London. The Summer Olympic games have not been held since Berlin, 1936. This is the first Olympics to be televised, although the spectators on hand for the opening ceremonies outnumber those watching at home.
Social Democrat Karl August Fagerholm replaces Mauno Pekkala as Prime Minister of Finland. Communists are not part of the new minority government.
29 former directors of IG Farbenindustrie are acquitted in a US court in Nuremberg of committing crimes against peace and conspiring to wage aggressive war. Nine are convicted of plundering occupied countries. Four are convicted of using slave labor and inhuman treatment at a Farben plant at Auschwitz. All convicted receive sentences of seven years or less.
Der Vorwurf, a concert aria for baritone, trumpet, trombone, and strings by Hans Werner Henze (22) to words of Werfel, is performed for the first time, in Darmstadt.
Igor Stravinsky (66) files suit in Los Angeles against Leeds Music Corp. alleging they used his name as the composer of Summer Moon, a song based on a theme in Firebird. He further alleges that the addition of common lyrics damaged his standing as a serious composer. See 9 March 1949.
30 July 1948 President Zoltán Tildy of Hungary resigns when his son-in-law, the Minister to Egypt, is arrested in Budapest charged with treason and espionage.
By the passing of the British Citizenship Act, all citizens of the Commonwealth are British subjects.
Duke Ellington (49), Kay Davis, and Ray Nance board the Queen Elizabeth in Cherbourg making for New York.
Elizabeth Terrill Bentley, who says she was a communist spy during World War II, testifies before a US Senate committee that she received classified information from 20 government employees directly and from 20-30 indirectly. She also claims to have collected Communist Party dues from William Remington, a high official at the Commerce Department.
31 July 1948 In a US court in Nuremberg, six of the twelve former directors of Krupp munitions manufacturers are found guilty of using slave labor and plundering occupied countries. Five other former directors are found guilty on the slave labor counts only. One is acquitted. Sentences range from two years, ten months to twelve years.
Testifying before the House Un-American Activities Committee, confessed communist spy Elizabeth Terrill Bentley accuses Lauchlin Currie and Harry Dexter White of furnishing communist spy rings with information during the war. Currie was an administrative assistant in the White House from 1939-1945 and White worked in the Treasury Department, later becoming Asst. Secretary of the Treasury. She names Nathan Gregory Silvermaster, a former employee at three government agencies, as an NKVD agent in charge of a spy ring. She also names Victor Perlo of the War Production Board as a communist who provided her with information. She goes on to name several other government employees who she claims are communists or provided information.
2 August 1948 Lee Bum Suk is named the first Prime Minister of Korea.
Louis Budenz, a college professor and former editor of the Daily Worker, testifies before a US Senate committee, generally corroborating the testimony of Elizabeth Terrill Bentley. He says that there are hundreds of communists in important government positions.
3 August 1948 String Quartet no.2 by Peter Sculthorpe (19) is performed for the first time, in Melbourne.
Communist Arpád Szákasits replaces Zoltán Tildy as President of Hungary. Appearing before the House Un-American Activities Committee, former communist Whittaker Chambers accuses eight members of the Roosevelt administration of being communists. They include former State Department official Alger Hiss.
William Remington testifies before the Senate committee that he did give Elizabeth Bentley information, but that none of it was classified. He denies ever being a communist.
4 August 1948 Exactly two months after they sailed for Europe, Duke Ellington (49), Kay Davis, and Ray Nance arrive back in New York.
Nathan Silvermaster testifies before the House Un-American Activities Committee, denying the accusations of espionage brought by Elizabeth Bentley saying, “she is a neurotic liar.” He refuses to answer any questions about his personal associations since he is still under grand jury investigation.
5 August 1948 Israel proposes direct negotiations between itself and the Arab countries presently invading the Holy Land.
Alger Hiss appears before the House Un-American Activities Committee and denies that he was ever a communist or that he has ever met Whittaker Chambers.
US President Truman tells newsmen that he believes the investigations of the House Un-American Activities Committee “serve no useful purpose…They are slandering a lot of people who don’t deserve it.” He says that they contain no information not already known to the FBI and calls them a “red herring” to divert attention from the “do-nothing” Republican Congress.
6 August 1948 UN negotiator Count Folke Bernadotte transmits Israel’s offer of yesterday to the Arab League in Cairo. Before he can deliver it, Egypt denounces it.
Willem Drees replaces Louis Joseph Maria Beel as Prime Minister of the Netherlands.
7 August 1948 The US Congress adjourns after passing only three pieces of legislation of the eleven demanded by President Truman when he called them back. The White House denounces two of the bills passed.
8 August 1948 Greek government forces reach the Albanian border in two places.
In Moscow, the Lenin All-Union Academy of Agricultural Sciences declares that Mendel’s laws of genetics are an “alien foreign bourgeois biology.”
9 August 1948 Expected to be a star witness before the House Un-American Activities Committee, alleged Communist courier Alexander Koral declines to answer questions and invokes his rights under the fifth amendment to the Constitution. Twelve other persons named by Elizabeth Terrill Bentley and Whittaker Chambers appear. Five refuse to answer questions, seven deny all charges laid against them.
11 August 1948 In the case of Bank of NSW v. Commonwealth, the High Court of Australia rules that the government’s nationalization of banks is unconstitutional.
The Greek government announces the capture of Alevista Mountain, an important rebel base in the north.
In further testimony before the House Un-American Activities Committee, Elizabeth Terrill Bentley names Anatoly Gromov, first secretary of the Soviet embassy in Washington, as the man who gave her $2,000. This is the first direct link to the Soviet Union.
12 August 1948 Oksana Stepanova Kosenkina, a chemistry teacher, dives from the third floor of the Soviet consulate in New York and is critically injured. Soviet officials have been holding her since 7 August intending to transport her back to the Soviet Union. She will survive. At about the same time, Mikhail Ivanovich Samarin and his wife, two other Soviet teachers, having testified secretly before the House Un-American Activities Committee, renounce their Soviet citizenship.
13 August 1948 Wilderness Stair: Diversion of Angels, a ballet by Norman Dello Joio (35), is performed for the first time, at Connecticut College, New London. See 20 October 1949.
14 August 1948 The Games of the Fourteenth Olympiad of the Modern Era close in London. In 17 days of competition, 4,104 athletes from 59 countries took part.
John Cage (35) produces a performance of Erik Satie’s (†23) The Ruse of Medusa at Black Mountain College in North Carolina. Buckminster Fuller plays Medusa, while Merce Cunningham plays a mechanical monkey. The set is created by Willem de Kooning while his daughter plays Medusa’s daughter. The director is Arthur Penn. Cage plays the music.
15 August 1948 The Republic of Korea, under first President Syngman Rhee, is established in the American occupation zone south of the 38th parallel.
The Strangler, a ballet by Bohuslav Martinu (57) to a story by Fitzgerald, is performed for the first time, in New London, Connecticut.
17 August 1948 In a highly charged executive session of the House Un-American Activities Committee in a New York hotel room, Alger Hiss and Whittaker Chambers are called to confront each other. On closer examination, Hiss testifies that he once knew Chambers, but many years ago and by a different name. He continues to deny that he was ever a member of the Communist Party.
18 August 1948 Maria Provaznikova, an official of the Czechoslovak Olympic team, announces in London that she will seek asylum in the United States.
19 August 1948 Chinese President Chiang Kai-shek decrees Financial and Economic Emergency Measures in a last ditch effort to save his government.
20 August 1948 The expulsion of Yakov Lomakin, the Soviet Consul-General in New York, by the US government is made public.
Three works for piano by John Cage (35) are performed for the first time, at Black Mountain College, North Carolina: In a Landscape for a dance by Louise Lippold, and Orestes and Suite for Toy Piano, both to dances by Merce Cunningham.
22 August 1948 A constitution for the World Council of Churches is ratified in Amsterdam.
The Greek National Army assaults leftist rebels in the mountains of Vitsi. The rebels do not budge.
Soviet military police capture Thomas Headen, deputy chief of the American Military Government of Berlin, in the US part of the Potsdamer Platz. He will be released tomorrow. It is the latest in a series of incursions by Soviets into the western zones of Berlin.
Poland announces the execution in Krakow of Joseph F. Buehler, state secretary during the German occupation, for the killing of 2,000,000 Jews and he deportation of 2,000,000 Poles.
Louisiana Story, a film with music by Virgil Thomson (51), is shown for the first time, in the Cally Picture House, Edinburgh, Scotland. See 2 May 1949.
25 August 1948 In a public repeat of their private meeting on 17 August, Alger Hiss and Whittaker Chambers testify before the House Un-American Activities Committee. Hiss testifies for six hours, Chambers for three. Chambers repeats his charges that State Department official Hiss is or was a communist. Hiss denies all charges.
The Soviet Union ends all consular relations with the United States. Soviet consulates in New York and San Francisco, as well as the US consulate in Vladivostok, are closed. Plans for a US consulate in Leningrad are cancelled.
The First Symphony of Hans Werner Henze (22) is performed completely for the first time, in Bad Pyrmont. See 9 April 1964.
26 August 1948 Communists invade city hall in Berlin demanding the resignation of the predominantly non-communist city assembly. The raid is repeated tomorrow.
27 August 1948 The US Air Force announces that it is spending $260,000 a day to transport essential supplies to Berlin.
28 August 1948 Two French UN observers are killed when their plane is fired on at an Egyptian air base near Gaza.
The Czechoslovak government arrests a Dutch embassy official, Bortolomeus Van Dam, and several Czechs in an alleged espionage conspiracy.
In a preliminary report, the House Un-American Activities Committee asserts that it has proven that over the last five years, foreign and domestic communists have worked together on espionage. They claim that the alleged failure of the Attorney General to prosecute communists is testimony of how much influence communists have in the government.
31 August 1948 Robert Schuman replaces André Marie as Prime Minister of France.
1 September 1948 North Shensi Radio announces that a North China Peoples Government has been constituted in an undisclosed location. It consists of a 528-member assembly and 39 peoples commissars.
An assembly convenes in Bonn to draft a constitution for western Germany. Konrad Adenauer, the former mayor of Cologne, is elected president of the assembly.
In an official effort to end “formalism” in Soviet music, Dmitri Shostakovich (41) is removed from his positions at the Leningrad and Moscow Conservatories effective today.
As part of the US presidential campaign, Republican challenger Thomas Dewey declares that President Truman has allowed Communists to gain high positions of power in the government.
3 September 1948 Edvard Benes, former President of Czechoslovakia who resigned 7 June, dies from the effects of a stroke at his home in Sezimovo Usti.
4 September 1948 Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands abdicates her throne and is succeeded by her daughter Juliana.
6 September 1948 Communist mobs once again surge into Berlin City Hall and break up a meeting of the city assembly. 19 west-sector policemen are arrested by Soviet-sector policemen. Non-communist assembly members flee to the British sector while those left conduct an assembly meeting. The building is surrounded by Soviets and their supporters, trapping west-sector police and officials inside.
7 September 1948 French officials negotiate an agreement for the release of 19 west-sector policemen held in the Berlin City Hall.
8 September 1948 19 west-sector policemen are released from Berlin City Hall by the Soviets but are subsequently abducted from the French by east-sector police.
President Juan Perón of Argentina threatens to hang anyone who opposes his plans to change the constitution.
9 September 1948 The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, under first President Kim Il-Sung, is established in the Soviet occupation zone north of the 38th parallel.
250,000 anti-communist Berliners rally near the Reichstag. They throw stones at a Soviet war memorial and remove a Soviet flag from the Brandenburg Gate. Soviet soldiers open fire, killing one person and injuring 22 others. British soldiers restore order.
Marsia, a ballet by Luigi Dallapiccola (44) to a scenario by Milloss, is performed for the first time, at Teatro La Fenice, Venice.
Missa brevis for vocal soloists, chorus, and orchestra by Zoltán Kodály (65) is performed for the first time, in Worcester Cathedral conducted by the composer. See 11 February 1945.
10 September 1948 Former King Ferdinand of Bulgaria dies in exile in Coburg, possibly a victim of foul play.
Henri Queuille replaces Robert Schuman as Prime Minister of France.
11 September 1948 The man most responsible for the existence of Pakistan, and its first Governor-General, Mohammed Ali Jinnah, dies in Karachi of a heart attack.
13 September 1948 Indian troops invade the princely state of Hyderabad.
William Walton (46) sails from Genoa for Buenos Aires where he is to be a delegate to a conference of the Performing Rights Society. The group is meeting in Buenos Aires in hopes of inducing Argentina to sign the Bern Convention on copyright.
Kurt Weill’s (48) vaudeville Love Life, to words of Lerner, is performed for the first time, in the Shubert Theatre, Boston. It is generally successful. See 7 October 1948.
14 September 1948 After three weeks of bitter fighting in the mountains of Vitsi, the Greek National Army is sent into retreat by leftist rebels.
15 September 1948 L’apothéose de Molière for chamber orchestra by Darius Milhaud (56) is performed for the first time, on Capri.
16 September 1948 The life sentence of Ilse Koch for atrocities at Buchenwald is reduced to four years by the US Army.
17 September 1948 After five days of fighting, the Nizam of Hyderabad surrenders to invading Indian troops.
Count Folke Bernadotte, the United Nations mediator for the Middle East, and Colonel André Pierre Serot, chief United Nations observer in Jerusalem, are murdered by Jewish extremists in Jerusalem. The Israeli government arrests 200 suspects in search of the assassins.
Concerto for two pianos, with two harps and percussion by Bruno Maderna (28) is performed for the first time, in Venice.
18 September 1948 Indonesian communists attempt a coup in Maliun, killing officials of the republican government.
The UN Security Council confirms Ralph Bunche as temporary successor to Folke Bernadotte as chief Middle East negotiator.
19 September 1948 The USSR announces that it will withdraw all its troops from North Korea by 1 January.
Communist gangs in the Soviet sector of Berlin force newsstands to stop selling western news publications.
The Stern Group announces that it is disbanding as a military organization and that its members will join the Israeli army.
Parliamentary elections in Sweden result in a near majority for the ruling Social Democrats and big gains for the Liberal Peoples Party.
20 September 1948 The government of the Indonesian Republic votes emergency powers to President Sukarno to deal with the communist insurgency in Maliun.
Two former Nazi officials in Denmark, Werner Best and Otto Bovensiepen, are sentenced to death by a Danish court.
The final report of UN peace negotiator Folke Bernadotte makes several recommendations based on two premises: 1. Peace must be restored in the Middle East by any means possible, and 2. A Jewish state called Israel exists in and there are no sound reasons for assuming that it will not continue to do so.
The Israeli cabinet adopts emergency measures to combat Jewish terrorism. The Irgun Zvai Leumi disbands and turns over large quantities of weapons to the Israeli government. Their members will join the army.
The Arab League announces the creation of an Arab Palestine government in Gaza. King Abdullah of Transjordan denounces the move and forbids such a government to operate.
22 September 1948 14 people are killed, 47 injured when a bomb explodes in the Jewish quarter of Cairo.
23 September 1948 A Jewish merchant, Shafiq Ades, is hanged in Basra for allegedly sending arms to Zionists, before 12,000 cheering Arabs.
The former Nazi commander of Budapest, Imre Nidosi, is hanged in that city.
24 September 1948 After nine days of fighting, Tsinan (Jinan) falls to Chinese communist forces.
The three western powers in Berlin retaliate for the actions of 19 September and ban publications licensed by the USSR.
Speaking in Buenos Aires, President Juan Perón alleges a plot to assassinate him and his wife, led by US embassy official John Francis Griffith. 16 people have been arrested, including the leader of the Labor Party. The speech leads to violent demonstrations by his followers which cause 80 injuries.
25 September 1948 From Jewish Folk Poetry, a cycle for three solo voices and piano by Dmitri Shostakovich (48), is performed for the first time, privately at a party celebrating his 42nd birthday. A public performance is unlikely in the current official mood of anti-Semitism. See 15 January 1955.
Just weeks before the US national elections, the House Un-American Activities Committee says that its final report will show that Soviet agents were able to gain atomic secrets and that Presidents Roosevelt and Truman and Attorney General Tom Clark knew of it and did nothing about it.
26 September 1948 Meat rationing ends in New Zealand.
The three western powers break off negotiations in Moscow over Berlin, claiming that the USSR has reneged on a previous agreement.
27 September 1948 The House Un-American Activities Committee releases its 18,000-word report. It names Soviet agents and their US contacts and accuses Presidents Roosevelt and Truman of doing nothing about it. Everyone named in the report denies the accusations.
28 September 1948 After eleven years away, Arab leader Haj Amin al-Husseini returns to Palestine at Gaza. Much of the exile was spent as a guest of the Nazi government in Germany.
Spain bans the film Gentleman’s Agreement because it sympathizes with Jews, considered “enemies of the Church.”
Louisiana Story, a film with music by Virgil Thomson (51), is released in the United States.
29 September 1948 United States Ambassador Warren Austin hands Secretary-General Trygve Lie a note formally objecting to the blockade of Berlin, thus bringing the matter before the United Nations.
The US Justice Department responds to the report of two days ago by saying all the allegations are already known to them and that there is “absolutely no competent proof” to warrant prosecutions. They claim the committee is engaging in “political gymnastics” just weeks before the national election.
The Philadelphia Orchestra resolves a pay dispute with its musicians by raising minimum wages. Its cancellation of the upcoming season is rescinded.
30 September 1948 Indonesian troops recapture Madiun from communists.
Fighting resumes in the Arab-Israeli war. A week of back and forth fighting begins near Faluja, east of Majdal (Ashqelon).
Jonathan Lloyd is born in London.
1 October 1948 Haj Amin al-Husseini is elected president of the Arab Palestine National Assembly.
Four Anniversaries for piano by Leonard Bernstein (30) is performed for the first time, in Cleveland.
The Supreme Court of the State of California rules 4-3 that a state law prohibiting marriage between whites and “Negroes, Mongolians, Malayans or mulattoes” is unconstitutional.
2 October 1948 The Arab Palestine National Assembly declares the independence of Palestine as an Arab state.
Leonard Bernstein (30) becomes music director of the Israel Philharmonic.
Mary Leakey discovers a shattered skull of Proconsul africanus outside Rusinga, Kenya. It is the first skull of a fossilized ape ever found.
5 October 1948 An earthquake in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan (USSR) kills 110,000 people.
The first Concert de bruit of musique-concrète by Pierre Schaeffer (38) is broadcast over the airwaves of Paris Radio. The five works performed are Étude aux chemins de fer, Étude aux tourniquets, Étude violette, Étude noire and Étude pathétique. Reactions of listeners are mixed.
6 October 1948 Potato rationing ends in the western occupation zones of Germany.
Summer and Smoke by Tennessee Williams opens in New York to mixed reviews.
7 October 1948 The government of Japanese Prime Minister Hitoshi Ashida resigns in the midst of a bribery scandal. Two members are under arrest.
Kurt Weill’s (48) vaudeville Love Life, to words of Lerner, is performed for the first time in New York at the 46th Street Theatre. It is generally successful. See 13 September 1948.
8 October 1948 The government of Spain agrees to rescind its ban on the film Gentleman’s Agreement but reserves the right to make changes in the film.
10 October 1948 La bonne cuisine for voice and piano by Leonard Bernstein (30) to words of Dutoit (tr. Bernstein), is performed for the first time, in New York.
11 October 1948 The Seven Storey Mountain by Thomas Merton is published by Harcourt Brace.
The Young Guard, Part 1, a film with music by Dmitri Shostakovich (42), is shown for the first time.
12 October 1948 The government of Burma places all farm land under state ownership and votes to compensate private owners. The land is to be redistributed to farmers.
13 October 1948 After a week of meetings in Paris, six members of the UN Security Council not involved in the Berlin dispute, give up trying to broker a compromise with the Big Four.
14 October 1948 Shigeru Yoshida replaces Hitoshi Ashida as Prime Minister of Japan.
Chinese communist forces capture Chinhsien (Jinxi) in southern Manchuria.
Whittaker Chambers testifies before a federal grand jury in New York that he has never committed espionage. He is lying.
Toccata for orchestra by Walter Piston (54) is performed for the first time, in Bridgeport, Connecticut.
15 October 1948 Israeli planes bomb Egyptian bases at El Arish, Gaza, Majdal (Ashqelon), Rafa, and Beit Hanun.
16 October 1948 The Philippine government rules the Communist Party illegal.
In action around Faluja, Israeli forces drive to within 600 meters of Beit Hanun and attack Egyptians in Iraq el-Manshiyya using tanks for the first time. The attack fails.
Calligrammes, a cycle for voice and piano by Francis Poulenc (49) to words of Apollinaire, is performed for the first time, privately in the Paris salon of the Comtesse Marie-Blanche de Polignac, the composer at the keyboard. See 20 November 1948.
17 October 1948 Israeli forces attack south against the Egyptians and capture the Faluja crossroads.
18 October 1948 The USSR bans all motor traffic between western Berlin and the Soviet-occupied area surrounding it.
19 October 1948 Communist forces retake Chefu (Yantai) in Shantung (Shandong).
Israeli forces take Walaga, west of Jerusalem.
20 October 1948 After a siege of a year culminating in a three-day push, Chinese communist forces capture Changchun, the capital of Manchuria.
Communists begin a revolt in southern Korea, taking control of Yeosu and Suncheon.
Israeli troops capture Huleiqat, opening the way to the Negev.
21 October 1948 Israeli forces capture Beersheba (Be’er Sheva).
22 October 1948 Israeli forces capture Beit Hanun, blocking the coastal road in an attempt to cut off the Egyptian escape route.
Israeli troops reach within a few kilometers of Bethlehem.
A third United Nations cease-fire between Israel and its Arab enemies, Egypt and Transjordan, goes into effect.
Xerography, invented by Chester F. Carlson, is publicly demonstrated in New York.
Toccata Concertante for orchestra by Irving Fine (33) is performed for the first time, in Symphony Hall, Boston.
23 October 1948 South Korean forces put down the revolt in the south of the country and restore order. 3,000 people are arrested.
Chinese communist forces capture Kaifeng.
French troops take over seven of the country’s coal mines after a week of labor unrest.
24 October 1948 Sinfonietta by Francis Poulenc (49) is performed for the first time, over the airwaves of the BBC originating in London.
Afterthought for voice and piano by Leonard Bernstein (30) to his own words, is performed for the first time, in Town Hall, New York.
25 October 1948 The Greek government declares martial law in the Peloponnesus.
The Young Guard, Part 2, a film with music by Dmitri Shostakovich (42), is shown for the first time.
26 October 1948 The USSR vetoes a Security Council resolution demanding the lifting of travel restrictions to Berlin.
27 October 1948 South Korean troops complete the recapture of Yeosu from communist rebels.
Igor Stravinsky’s (66) Mass for chorus and double wind quintet is performed for the first time, at the Teatro alla Scala, Milan.
Incidental music to Camus’ play L’etat de siége by Arthur Honegger (56) is performed for the first time, in the Théâtre de Marigny, Paris at the premiere of the play.
28 October 1948 Israeli forces begin an offensive against Arab positions in northern Galilee.
A US court in Nuremberg convicts eleven high German military officials of crimes against humanity. Sentences range from time served to life imprisonment.
A filmed version of One Touch of Venus with music by Kurt Weill (48) is shown for the first time, in New York.
29 October 1948 Israeli troops capture Tarshiha (Me’ona) near the Lebanese border.
The declaration of martial law on 25 October by the Greek government is extended to the entire country.
30 October 1948 Having captured the entire Galilee, Israeli forces turn north into Lebanon.
An orchestral suite from music for the film The Red Pony by Aaron Copland (47) is performed for the first time, in Houston. See 8 March 1949.
31 October 1948 The US government advises its citizens to leave Peking and Tientsin.
1 November 1948 Chinese communist forces crush nationalists at Mukden (Shenyang), 620 km northeast of Peking.
All health care and movie theatres in Romania are nationalized.
Turkey stops issuing permits to its Jewish citizens to go to Israel. However, many Jews gain permits to other countries, then travel from there to Israel.
Paul Hindemith’s (52) Cello Sonata is performed for the first time, over the airwaves of the BBC.
2 November 1948 The Romanian government nationalizes the film industry.
National elections in the United States give a surprise victory to President Harry Truman, ensuring his reelection over Thomas E. Dewey, Governor of New York, Strom Thurmond, Governor of South Carolina, and former Vice President Henry Wallace. His Democratic Party gains nine seats in the Senate and 75 in the House of Representatives, winning back control of both.
3 November 1948 In a New Delhi court, Narayan Vinayak Godse confesses to the murder of Mohandas Gandhi. He asks to be put to death.
The American electorate awakens to learn that, contrary to all expectations, they have elected President Harry S. Truman to a second term.
The first bathyscaphe, created by Auguste Piccard, makes an unmanned first test off Dakar, reaching a depth of 1,371 meters.
Prelude, Fugue, Postlude for organ by Arthur Honegger (56) from his music for Amphion, is performed for the first time, in Geneva.
4 November 1948 Chinese communists capture the Manchurian port of Yingkow (Yingkou).
The United Nations Security Council calls on all forces in the Middle East War to withdraw to positions they held before the recent Israeli Negev offensive by 25 November.
American Folk Songs for Children by Ruth Crawford Seeger (47) is released by Doubleday.
Francis Poulenc (49) and Pierre Bernac give the first recital on their first North American tour, at the Dumbarton Oaks estate in Washington.
A Survivor from Warsaw for speaker, male chorus, and orchestra by Arnold Schoenberg (74) to his own words, is performed for the first time, in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
5 November 1948 The South Korean government orders the arrest of all leftists.
The US government advises its citizens to leave Nanking.
Tegel airfield is put into operation to receive airlift provisions. It is the third Berlin airport.
MA Johnson is acquitted of murder in the death of Isaiah Nixon, the only black resident of Montgomery County, Georgia. Johnson admitted killing Nixon, who insisted on voting in the Democratic primary, but said he thought he had a gun in his pocket.
Piano Sonata no.4 by Ernst Krenek (48) is performed for the first time, in San Francisco, California.
6 November 1948 Leni Riefenstahl is acquitted in a denazification court in Villingen, in the French occupation zone.
7 November 1948 Belgium ends the rationing of all foods except sugar.
Darius Milhaud’s (56) Violin Concerto no.2 is performed for the first time, in Paris.
Francis Poulenc (49) and Pierre Bernace perform in Town Hall, New York to prolonged applause. The press is very laudatory.
9 November 1948 General fighting breaks out again between Israel and the Arabs as the third United Nations truce ends. Israeli troops capture the fortress of Iraq es-Suweidan (Iraq Suwaydan) from Egyptian defenders on their sixth attempt.
10 November 1948 President Chiang Kai-shek places Nanking and Shanghai under martial law because of threats from surging communist forces.
12 November 1948 On the last day of the Japanese War Crimes trials former Prime Minister Hideki Tojo, General Iwane Matsui (oversaw the “Rape of Nanking”), Lt. General Akira Muto (commander in the Philippines), General Kenji Doihara (commander in Malaya and Indonesia), Koki Hirota (former prime minister), General Heitaro Kimura (vice-minister of war) and General Seishiro Itagaki (responsible for starving prisoners in Indonesia) are sentenced to death, 16 defendants receive life imprisonment and two others are given lesser sentences. The court pronounced the “national guilt” of Japan for its aggressive actions since 1928.
Fifteen former guards at Mauthausen are hanged in Landsberg Prison, west of Munich.
Umberto Menotti Maria Giordano dies in Milan, aged 81 years, two months, and 15 days.
All 45,000 longshoremen on the east coast of the United States go on strike.
13 November 1948 The South Korean government declares martial law in its southern provinces.
The US Army reports that Jewish refugees are leaving Germany at the rate of 4,000 per month, presumably for Israel. Since 15 May, 15,000 Jews have left Germany.
Arnold Schoenberg (74) writes to the editors of Saturday Review for Literature in protest to Thomas Mann’s unlicensed use of his twelve-tone method in his novel Doctor Faustus.
Two works by Duke Ellington (49) are performed for the first time, in Carnegie Hall, New York: The Tattooed Bride and Symphomaniac, the latter a collaboration with Billy Strayhorn.
15 November 1948 An exhibition of the works of Andrew Wyeth, including the first showing of Christina’s World, opens at the Macbeth Gallery in New York.
Suite in D by Michael Tippett (43), celebrating the birth of Prince Charles, is performed for the first time, over the airwaves of the BBC Third Programme.
Louis Stephen St. Laurent replaces William Lyon Mackenzie King as Prime Minister of Canada.
17 November 1948 Bachianas Brasileiras no.9 for string orchestra by Heitor Villa-Lobos (61) is performed for the first time, in the Teatro Municipal, Rio de Janeiro.
19 November 1948 King Farouk of Egypt decrees his own divorce from Queen Farida. She has produced three daughters.
The MIT chapter of Alpha Chi Sigma, a chemistry fraternity, disbands because its national leadership refuses to rescind a rule that membership be limited to “non-Semitic members of the Caucasian race.”
Music for Piano by Irving Fine (33) is performed (officially) for the first time, in Boston. (It may have been performed as many as four times previous to this around the Boston area)
Suite from “The Quiet One” for orchestra by Ulysses Kay (31) is performed for the first time, in Times Hall, New York conducted by the composer.
20 November 1948 Leonard Bernstein (30) conducts members of the Israel Philharmonic in a concert at Beersheba for the Israeli soldiers who liberated it only a month ago. Among the thousands of listeners, sitting mostly on the ground, are soldiers, airmen, civilians, local Arabs, and a number of camels. The Egyptians, seeing the mass of people as a possible attack, withdraw troops from the Jerusalem front to counter the expected Israeli assault.
Calligrammes, a cycle for voice and piano by Francis Poulenc (49) to words of Apollinaire, is performed publicly for the first time, in Town Hall, New York, the composer at the keyboard. See 16 October 1948.
21 November 1948 Virgil Thomson’s (51) Meditation for orchestra is performed for the first time, in the Orpheum Theatre, Vancouver.
22 November 1948 Chinese communists take Paoting (Baoding), 175 km west of Tientsin, after it is abandoned by nationalists.
24 November 1948 Dr. Ralph Bunche announces that the demands of the 4 November Security Council resolution have been met.
Organum for orchestra by Carl Ruggles (72) is performed for the first time, in Carnegie Hall, New York. See 20 April 1947.
25 November 1948 Longshoremen’s strikes on both coasts of the United States are settled.
26 November 1948 An orchestral suite from music to the film Louisiana Story by Virgil Thomson (52) is performed for the first time, in the Philadelphia Academy of Music. See 22 August 1948 and 2 May 1949.
27 November 1948 Matyas Rákosi, General Secretary of the Hungarian Workers Party, tells his Culture-Political Division to work against western and bourgeois elements in the arts.
The General Confederation of Labor calls off an eight-week French coal strike. It has effectively collapsed.
Evocation op.17a for orchestra by Wallingford Riegger (63) is performed for the first time, in Vancouver.
28 November 1948 The first Polaroid Land Camera goes on sale in a Boston department store. This first commercially successful self-developing camera costs $89.75.
The national executive council of Phi Kappa Psi fraternity suspends its Amherst College chapter after they admitted a black student.
“Dirge” from the Symphony no.2 “Age of Anxiety” by Leonard Bernstein (30) is performed for the first time, in Tel Aviv the composer playing the piano part. See 8 April 1949.
29 November 1948 A constituent assembly in New Delhi adopts a constitutional amendment abolishing untouchability.
Scott of the Antarctic, a film with music by Ralph Vaughan Williams (76), is shown for the first time, in the Empire Theatre, Leicester Square, London.
30 November 1948 The City Council of Berlin is split, thus recognizing a de facto division of the city. Communist Friedrich Ebert is elected mayor of East Berlin.
Opposing military commanders in Jerusalem sign a cease-fire for the city.
1 December 1948 A conference in Jericho votes to join Transjordan with the territories that its army has conquered in Palestine. The new nation would be called the Kingdom of Jordan under King Abdullah. The idea is rejected by Egypt, Syria, and Iraq. Riots in Damascus cause eight deaths.
President José Figueres of Costa Rica disbands the army, saying it is no longer needed.
2 December 1948 250,000 Chinese nationalist defenders of Suchow (Suzhou) retreat south from the city, leaving it to the communists.
A constituent assembly in New Delhi adopts a constitutional Charter of Liberty.
Whittaker Chambers leads federal agents to a pumpkin patch on his Westminster, Maryland farm and retrieves microfilm copies of secret government documents. He said he hid them there in case the farm was searched by communist agents. The House Un-American Activities Committee immediately seizes the documents and claims they are proof of a massive communist spy-ring in the United States.
3 December 1948 The Chinese ship SS Kiangya carrying refugees to South China explodes in the China Sea, 80 km south of Shanghai. 1,100 people are killed.
The Philippine government sends a naval vessel to Shanghai to evacuate all Philippine nationals in the country.
Merck & Co. announces that they have crystallized Vitamin B-12.
Sergey Prokofiev’s (57) opera The Story of a Real Man to words of Mendelson and the composer after Polevoy, is performed for the first time, in a private, concert setting for Communist Party and Union of Composers officials at the Kirov Theatre, Leningrad. The composer’s doctors allow him to attend the performance, but not the discussion following. The work is condemned by the audience.
Quattro liriche di Antonio Machado for voice and piano by Luigi Dallapiccola (44) is performed for the first time, over the airwaves of Belgian Radio originating in Brussels.
4 December 1948 The House Un-American Activities Committee claims that there are 800 US communists who are “the high officers of a secret army now being drilled to overthrow our government.”
5 December 1948 Residents of the three western sectors of Berlin vote for an assembly for their half of the city.
6 December 1948 A cease-fire is agreed to between Israel and Iraq in the north of the country.
7 December 1948 The cabinet of Transjordan agrees to King Abdullah’s acceptance of the crown of a united Transjordan and Palestine.
Wheat Field at Noon for orchestra by Virgil Thomson (52) is performed for the first time, in the Columbia Auditorium, Louisville, Kentucky.
8 December 1948 A denazification court in Bayreuth fines Winifred Wagner DM6,000 and places her on probation for two-and-a-half years.
Piano Sonata no.1 by David Diamond (33) is performed for the first time, in Town Hall, New York.
Five Postludes for piano by Kenneth Gaburo (22) is performed for the first time, in Rochester, New York.
9 December 1948 István Dobi replaces Lajos Dinnyés as Prime Minister of Hungary. Ten of the 15 ministers in his government are Communists.
Witold Lutoslawski (35) wins the Music Prize of the City of Warsaw for his music for children.
10 December 1948 President Chiang Kai-shek extends martial law to all of China held by his government except Taiwan and the western provinces.
The United Nations General Assembly adopts the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Israeli forces launch a major offensive in the Negev and break through the Egyptian lines.
11 December 1948 Officials of Canada and Newfoundland sign an agreement in Ottawa for the admission of Newfoundland into the Canadian confederation.
Irving Fine (34) writes to Aaron Copland (48) that Harvard University has decided against renewing his appointment. He thinks anti-Semitism was part of the decision.
12 December 1948 A communist army reaches the Nanking-Suchow (Suzhou) railroad, about 60 km north of Nanking, the nationalist capital.
The United Nations General Assembly declares that the government of the Republic of Korea is the sole legitimate government for all Korea.
Violin Concerto no.1 by Hans Werner Henze (22) is performed for the first time, in Baden-Baden. The work was commissioned by Berlin Radio and was scheduled for performance there, but plans were changed due to the blockade of Berlin.
13 December 1948 The parliament of Transjordan approves the annexation of Arab-held lands on the west bank of the Jordan River.
Overture for string quartet in e minor by Franz Schubert (†120) is performed publicly for the first time, in Town Hall, New York.
William Walton (46) marries Susana Valeria Rosa Maria Gil Passo, daughter of an Argentinian lawyer, in a ceremony in civil court, Buenos Aires.
14 December 1948 Variations and Capriccio for violin and piano by Norman Dello Joio (35) is performed for the first time, in Carnegie Hall.
Elegy and Paean for viola and orchestra by Roy Harris (50) is performed for the first time, in Houston.
15 December 1948 About 2,000 postal and telegraph workers in East Berlin refuse to sign loyalty oaths to the new communist government. They are sacked.
The first nuclear reactor in France goes online just outside Paris.
In the Clinique Cécile in Lausanne, a large stone is removed from the bladder of Richard Strauss (84).
A federal grand jury indicts former State Department official Alger Hiss on two counts of perjury.
16 December 1948 French officials blow up two towers in their sector of Berlin used by Soviet-sector radio stations.
The Kingdom of Cambodia is granted independence within the French Union.
17 December 1948 Lester Cole, who was fired for refusing to answer questions about communists before a House committee, wins his law suit against MGM in a Los Angeles court. MGM is ordered to reinstate Cole in his job and pay him $74,250 in back pay.
18 December 1948 Chinese communist forces surround Peking.
Circe, an opera by Werner Egk (47) to his own words after Calderón de la Barca, is performed for the first time, in Berlin. See 2 June 1966.
A court in Ellisville, Mississippi rules that Davis Knight is “part Negro” and sentences him to five years in prison for marrying a white woman.
19 December 1948 Dutch forces in the Netherlands East Indies begin a second military action against Indonesia. They capture Yogyakarta and Bukittinggi. An emergency Indonesian government is declared at Payakumbuh under Sjafruddin Prawiranegara. The republican leaders, Sukarno, Hatta, and Sjahrir as well as many other Indonesian political and military leaders, are captured by the Dutch.
Sonata no.2 for violin alone by Ernst Krenek (48) is performed for the first time, in the National Gallery of Art, Washington.
20 December 1948 By this day all of Indonesia except parts of Sumatra is under the direct control of the Netherlands.
Laurence Duggan, President of the Institute of International Education, jumps from the 16th floor of a New York office building to his death. Later in the day, the House Un-American Activites Committee announces that Duggan’s name was mentioned in executive session as giving secret documents to Whittaker Chambers when Duggan was working for the State Department.
21 December 1948 The Allied Command is reconstituted in Berlin without the Soviet Union.
The Dail Eireann passes the Republic of Ireland Act which separates Ireland from any connection with the British crown. It will take effect next 29 April.
The Propaganda Section of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union denounces Sergey Prokofiev’s (57) opera The Story of a Real Man.
Whittaker Chambers denies that he ever received any secret documents from Laurence Duggan.
22 December 1948 19 Asian countries begin a boycott of the Netherlands over Indonesia. The United States suspends postwar aid for the Netherlands.
Israeli forces capture the strategic Hill 86 south of Gaza.
Four Excursions op.20 for piano by Samuel Barber (38) are performed completely for the first time, in New York Times Hall. See 4 January 1945.
Concert Music for orchestra by Robert Ward (31) is performed for the first time, in Strong Vincent Auditorium, Erie, Pennsylvania.
23 December 1948 Former Japanese Prime Minister Hideki Tojo, General Iwane Matsui, Lt. General Akira Muto, General Kenji Doihara, Koki Hirota, General Heitaro Kimura and General Seishiro Itagaki are hanged as war criminals at Sugamo Prison, Tokyo.
After three furious counterattacks, the Egyptians force the Israelis off Hill 86, south of Gaza.
The House Un-American Activities Committee calls 20 US unions “communist-controlled.” They call 13 high union officials communists.
24 December 1948 General Douglas MacArthur orders the release of all “Class A” war crimes suspects still in custody because their cases are similar to those recently acquitted.
The United Nations Security Council calls for an end to hostilities in Indonesia.
US Attorney General Tom Clark announces that an FBI investigation showed Laurence Duggan to be “a loyal employee of the US government.” Duggan jumped to his death 20 December.
25 December 1948 Madiun, Java falls to Dutch troops.
Israeli troops take the T’Mille Hills northeast of El Auja (Nizzana).
26 December 1948 Ode in Memory of Vladimir Ilyich Lenin for orchestra by Aram Khachaturian (45) is performed for the first time, in Moscow Conservatory Bolshoy Hall.
27 December 1948 Israeli forces capture El Auja (Nizzana) and cross the border into Egypt.
When the Catholic Church in Hungary refuses to make concessions to the government, József Cardinal Mindszenty and 13 others are arrested.
28 December 1948 Prime Minister Nokrashy Pasha of Egypt is shot and killed by 21-year-old veterinary student Abdel Hamid Ahmed Hassan, a member of the Moslem Brotherhood, in the elevator of a Cairo office building. The Brotherhood dislikes Nokrashy’s failure to defeat Israel.
Egyptian defenders of Iraq el-Manshiya near Faluja repel another Israeli attack.
Hymne for voice and piano by Francis Poulenc (49) to words of Racine is performed for the first time, in Town Hall, New York.
29 December 1948 Israeli forces take Abu Agella (Abu ‘Aweigila) and reach to within five km of El Arish where they halt. Both objectives are within Egypt. Other units attack the airfield at Bir el-Hamma to the west but are repulsed.
30 December 1948 Pope Pius XII excommunicates all Catholics who participated in the arrests of 27 December.
Paul Hindemith’s (53) Wind Septet is performed for the first time, in Milan.
Cole Porter’s Kiss Me Kate opens at the New Century Theatre, New York.
Two suites for solo voices, chorus and orchestra from the musical comedy Magdalena by Heitor Villa-Lobos (61) are performed for the first time, in Rio de Janeiro.
31 December 1948 The Netherlands accepts a United Nations cease-fire proposal for Java. Its military drive through the islands is essentially complete.
GD Searle & Co. markets dimenhydrinate tablets, later registered as Dramamine®.
Howard Hanson’s (52) Piano Concerto is performed for the first time, in Boston the composer conducting. On the same program is the premiere of Lukas Foss’ (26) Recordare for orchestra. This work is dedicated to Mohandas K. Gandhi and was begun on the day of his death.
©2004-2012 Paul Scharfenberger
20 November 2012
Last Updated (Tuesday, 20 November 2012 07:12)