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January 10: The Siege of Dunlap's Station, Project Diana Success, and Other Events of the Date
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January 10: The Siege of Dunlap's Station, Project Diana Success, and Other Events of the Date


A number of important events have taken place on January 10 in U.S. history. Here is our take on the most interesting and valuable of them.

1791 – Northwest Indian Wars: the Siege of Dunlap's Station

As Americans continued expanding to the Northwest, Native American tribes continued to suffer. The Siege of Dunlap's Station was just another episode in this story, taking place January 10–11, 1791, during the Northwest Indian War. It was fought between the Western Confederacy of American Indians and European-American settlers in what became the southwestern region of the U.S. state of Ohio.

This was one of the Indians' few unsuccessful attacks during this period though, as at that time Native Americans could fight almost as well as “the Europeans.” The battle took place shortly after the Harmar Campaign attacks and unprecedented defeat of U.S. Army forces. A few months after the siege, the Army's St. Clair's campaign famously failed.

Interestingly, this small episode, a week after the so-called Big Bottom Massacre in what became southeast Ohio, turned into an iconic event: Ohioans felt that traitors had tortured innocent civilians. The battle itself brought relatively low losses on both sides, as 2 Americans and 15 Native Americans were killed.

1946 - Project Diana Success

As the Cold War was just around the corner, the U.S. strongly needed something to counter the “future” enemy of the war-torn Soviet Union. The former allies did their best to annihilate those who fought by their side less than a year ago. And as many thought at that time, those future battles would be fought in space.

Project Diana, named for the Roman moon goddess, was an experimental project of the U.S. Army Signal Corps in 1946 to bounce radar signals off the moon and receive the reflected signals. This was the first experiment in radar astronomy and the first active attempt to probe another celestial body. It was the inspiration for later EME (Earth-Moon-Earth) communication techniques.

The first successful echo detection came on January 10, 1946 at 11:58 am local time by John H. DeWitt and his chief scientist E. King Stodola, however it’s unknown if it was real or not: It might have been just another piece of fake news to inspire American military scientists.

According to the official story, Project Diana marked the birth of radar astronomy later used to map Venus and other nearby planets, and was a necessary precursor to the US space program. It was the first demonstration that terrestrial radio signals could penetrate the ionosphere, opening the possibility of radio communications beyond the earth for space probes and human explorers. It also established the practice of naming space projects after Roman gods, e.g., Mercury and Apollo.

1984 – International Relations: the Re-Establishment of U.S.–Holy See Relations

Probably not many people today know that from 1867 to 1984 the U.S. did not have diplomatic relatons with the Holy See.

Several presidents designated personal envoys to visit the Holy See periodically for discussions of international humanitarian and political issues. Postmaster General James Farley was the first of these representatives and was the first high ranking government official to normalize relations with the Holy See in 1933 when he set sail for Europe, along with Soviet Commissar of Foreign Affairs Maxim Litvinov on the Italian Liner SS Conte Di Savoia "Count of Savoy."

In Italy, Farley had an audience with Pope Pius XI and dinner with Cardinal Pacelli, who was to succeed to the papacy in 1939. Indeed, it’s quite hard to believe that the U.S. and Holy See didn’t have any kind of diplomatic relations for 117 years, yet, it’s easy to remember JFK was hated by many Americans simply because he was a Catholic, as the Vatican has historically been accused of being un-American.

Finally, on January 10, 1984, international relations between the U.S. and the Holy See were re-established, which was a relief for dozens of millions of American Catholics.

These are the most notable events in U.S. history that occurred on January 10, at least in our view.

Author: USA Really