U.S. Naval Chronology Of W.W.II, 1939

1939 09/01 Fri. World War II begins as German troops invade Poland. Italy announces neutrality. 09/03 Sun. Great Britain, France, Australia, and New Zealand declare war on Germany. 09/05 Tue. President issues two Neutrality Proclamations; one according to Neutrality Act of 1937 which forbids shipment of arms and munitions to belligerents, the other in accordance with international law. President orders a Neutrality Patrol by Navy to report and track any belligerent air, surface, or underwater naval forces approaching Atlantic coasts of the United States or the West Indies. 09/06 Wed. Navy begins formation of Neutrality Patrol for Atlantic Ocean under Commander Atlantic Squadron (Rear Adm. A. W. Johnson). 09/08 Fri. President proclaims a "limited national emergency" and orders increase in enlisted strengths of all armed forces; naval enlisted men from 110,813 to 145,000; Marine Corps enlisted strength form 18,325 to 25,000; and authorizes recall to active duty of officers, men, and nurses on retired lists of Navy and Marine Corps. Allies announce a long-range blockade of Germany. 09/10 Sun. Canada declares war on Germany. 09/11 Mon. Adm. W. D. Leahy, USN (Ret.), takes office as Governor of Puerto Rico. Germany announces counter-blockade of Allies. 09/16 Sat. British Admiralty announces establishment of convoy system for its merchant shipping; first Halifax-United Kingdom convoy sails. 09/17 Sun. Russian forces invade Poland. 09/21 Thu. President asks for repeal of arms embargo provisions of Neutrality Act of 1937. 09.27 Wed. Warsaw surrenders unconditionally to Germany and Russia; Poland ceases to resist the invaders. 09/29 Fri. Poland is partitioned by Germany and Russia. 10/02 Mon. Act of Panama is approved by Conference of Foreign Ministers of American Republics meeting in Panama City. A neutrality zone some 300 miles in breadth is to be patrolled by the United States Navy. Germany notifies the United States that merchant vessels must submit to visit and search. 10/05 Thu. Hawaiian Detachment of United States Fleet is formed under Commander Scouting Force (Vice Adm. A. Andrews). 10/09 Mon. German armored cruiser DEUTSCHLAND seizes United States freighter CITY OF FLINT as contraband carrier, en route from New York to United Kingdom. 11/04 Sat. Neutrality Act of 1939 becomes law. This act repeals the arms embargo and substitutes a policy of "cash and carry"; prohibits United States vessels and citizens from entering combat zones; establishes the National Munitions Control composed of the Secretaries of States, Treasury, War, Navy, and Commerce. President declares area around British Isles a combat zone. 11/28 Tue. Russia denounces 1932 Non-Aggression Pact with Finland. 11/30 Thu. Russian forces invade Finland. 12/17 Sun. German armored cruiser ADMIRAL GRAF SPEE is scuttled off Montevideo, Uruguay. 12/19 Tue. German passenger liner COLUMBUS is scuttled about 450 miles east of Cape May, N. J., when intercepted by British destroyer. 12/27 Wed. United States protests British seizure of mail en route to Europe.