This Week in 1945 (August 16–August 22)
This week (Aug 16-Aug 22) during the last year the Cubs went to the World Series (before 2016)…
World War II
*Mao Zedong and Chiang Kai-shek meet in Chongqing to discuss an end to hostilities between the Communists and the Nationalists in China. Those hostilities won’t end 1949.
In Pop Culture
*The novel Animal Farm by George Orwell is first published by Fredric Warburg.
*”Abbott & Costello In Hollywood” is released (co-starring Lucille Ball)
*From the Chicago Tribune: “BUSES TO PLAY LARGER ROLE IN CHICAGO TRANSIT – Many Car Lines Likely to Be Replaced: Rehabilitation of Chicago’s traction system will undoubtedly result in the replacement of many street car lines with bus routes according to Philip Harrington, the chairman of the Chicago Metropolitan Transit authority. “It is probable that street cars of the most modern type will be retained on the long routes with heavy traffic. Whatever is done must have an idea in view— to get the customer to leave his car at home. He’ll do it if mass transportation is good.” Harrington indicated there is no intention now to eliminate street cars and the L structures entirely, as New York is planning to do.”
*PRICE CHECK: The average salary $2900 a year. The minimum wage is $.43 per hour.
*Scheduled demonstrations at Polo Grounds and Ebbets Field to end segregation in organized baseball are called off.
*At the Polo Grounds, the Cubs beat the Giants twice, 3-1 & 8-0 to increase their lead to 7 ½ games over the three-time defending NL champion Cardinals.
*Dodgers Tommy Brown, 17, becomes the youngest player to hit a home run.
*The New York Times calls ’em like they sees ’em: “CUBS TOP DODGERS WITH BOROWY, 20-6; Flag-Bound Chicagoans Score Eight Times in Fourth: If, as it was intimated, the Cardinals put the chill on Brooklyn’s pennant hopes, said aspirations were virtually frozen by the pace-setting Cubs at Ebbets Field yesterday when Jolly Cholly Grimm’s lads crushed the Dodgers, 20-6.”
*Orville Wright is 74 this week. He has already outlived his brother Wilbur by 33 years, and is considered one of the most important figures in American aviation, serving on various official boards and committees, including the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, which will eventually become known as NASA.
*Mae West turns 52. She’s still considered a sex symbol in America. The inflatable yellow life vests used by American pilots were named after her during the war.
*Coco Chanel also celebrates her 52nd birthday this week. She is living in liberated France.
*Gene Roddenberry turns 23. He is serving as a pilot in the 5th Bombardment Wing of the Thirteenth Air Force.
Cub of the week: FRANK SECORY
Secory is a reserve outfielder for the 1945 Cubs, a friendly guy that is well-liked by his teammates. They don’t just like him because he’s nice. They like him because he has a habit of getting big hits in big games. He only gets nine hits and six RBI for the season, but a few of those manage to defeat the defending champion Cardinals. Frank will get another cup of coffee with the Cubs in 1946, but after that his major league career will be over.