21 Oct 1938
  • HMS Gurkha (L52) was commissioned into service with Commander F. R. Parham in command. ww2dbase [AC]
  • Adolf Hitler issued the order to his top military commanders noting that German forces must be ready to seize the remainder of Czechoslovakia and Memel in Lithuania with minimal notice. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Kirishima launched a E8N1 Type 95 floatplane and photographed HMS Birmingham off Xiamen, China. ww2dbase [Main Article | Tabular Record of Movement | CPC]
  • Before dawn, HMS Birmingham sailed along the coast of Gulangyu island, an international zone, near Xiamen, China. At 0800 hours, she sailed into Xiamen harbor between four columns of Japanese war ships by surprise; Birmingham's crew was able to take photographs of classified Japanese naval equipment such as fire controls and radar antennae before the Japanese crew was able to cover them up. At 1100 hours, Birmingham set sail for Hong Kong. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Japanese troops captured the city of Guangzhou in Southern China nearly unopposed. The city was afire from both heavy Japanese bombing in the previous few days as well as from fires set by the retreating Chinese troops. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Japanese troops captured Chinese gunboat Yongji at Xinti, Hubei, China. ww2dbase [CPC]
Photo(s) dated 21 Oct 1938
Kirishima off Amoy, China, photographed by USS Pillsbury (DD-227), 21 Oct 1938, photo 1 of 3; note battleship Ise in backgroundKirishima off Amoy, China, photographed by USS Pillsbury (DD-227), 21 Oct 1938, photo 2 of 3Kirishima off Amoy, China, photographed by USS Pillsbury (DD-227), 21 Oct 1938, photo 3 of 3Battleship Kongo off Xiamen, Fujian Province, China, 21 Oct 1938; seen from destroyer USS Pillsbury

21 Oct 1938 Interactive Map

Timeline Section Founder: Thomas Houlihan
Contributors: Alan Chanter, C. Peter Chen, Thomas Houlihan, Hugh Martyr, David Stubblebine
Special Thanks: Rory Curtis

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Famous WW2 Quote
"The raising of that flag on Suribachi means a Marine Corps for the next 500 years."

James Forrestal, Secretary of the Navy, 23 Feb 1945