The news round-up this month is a bit deceptive, because a lot of the important historical events of this month weren’t heavily covered at the time. The biggest event really is the escalation of the “Spanish Flu” to a pandemic, but no one knew in June that it would ultimately kill more people than the First World War. The Bolsheviks weren’t advertising the fact that they had begun killing off the Romanov royal family, either. And, the important document the British government sent to the Syrians, assuring them of the principle of national self-determination would have significant influence on the Treaty of Versailles, although it received little publicity at the time. Sometimes, we don’t know what the most significant events of our times are until we can look back at them with some perspective.
World War One:
The Battle of Belleau Wood begins June 1. The U.S. Army 2nd Infantry Division deployed troops, including the 5th and 6th Marine Regiments, to hold Belleau Wood near the Marne River in France after the towns of Château-Thierry and Vaux fell to the Germans.
Allied counterattacks in the Third Battle of the Aisne on June 3 halted the German advance at the Marne River. Allied casualties were massive at 127,000, including 98,000 French casualties and 29,000 British casualties. Germany suffered slightly more with 130,000 casualties
The Austro-Hungarian dreadnought battleship SMS Szent István is sunk on June 10 by two Italian MAS motor torpedo boats, off the Dalmatian coast.
The first airplane bombing raid by an American unit in France is carried out June 12.
Grand Duke Michael of Russia is murdered on June 12, thereby becoming the first of the Romanovs to be murdered by the Bolsheviks.
The “Spanish ‘flu” becomes pandemic. Over 30 million people die in the following 6 months.
RMS Kenilworth Castle, one of the Union-Castle Line steamships, collides with her escort destroyer HMS Rival on June 4 while trying to avoid her other escort, the cruiser HMS Kent.
V603 Aquilae, the brightest nova observed since Kepler’s of 1604, is discovered June 8.
The Declaration to the Seven, a British government response to a memorandum issued anonymously by seven Syrian notables after the Balfour Declaration and the Sykes-Picot Agreement became known, is published June 16. It assures Arabs of the British government’s support of the principle of national self-determination after the war is over.
Suspects in the Chicago Restaurant Poisonings are arrested on June 22, and more than 100 waiters are taken into custody, for poisoning restaurant customers with a lethal powder called Mickey Finn.
Marion Davies produced and starred in her second feature film Cecilia of the Pink Roses, released through Select Pictures on June 2.
Theda Bara starred in the silent drama Under the Yoke, released June 9, which became noteworthy in its controversy in later years for its depiction of Filipinos and the one-sided view of American occupation in the Philippines.
Robert Preston (actor, in “The Music Man” and “Victor/Victoria”) June 8.
Jane Bryan (actress, in “Kid Galahad” and “Brother Rat”) June 11.
Ellen Liiger (Estonian actress, known for the film adaptation of Karge meri) June 26.