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History's Happenings for September 2

Allies Accept Japanese Surrender

On this day in 1945, the Japanese government signed the official document of surrender on board the battleship U.S.S. Missouri, anchored in Tokyo Bay. Supreme Allied Commander in the Pacific, General Douglas MacArthur, presided over the ceremonies, and the surrender document was signed in turn by a senior military officer from each Allied nation which fought in the Pacific theater.

Hostilities had officially ceased two weeks earlier, on August 14. VJ Day was officially August 15.

MacArthur went on to become the occupation governor of Japan.

Great Fire of London

(Stay tuned for a write-up on this event.
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Treasury Department Established

The Department of the Treasury, established in 1789, was one of the first Executive departments founded upon the new Constitution, along with the Departments of War and State, and the Attorney General's Office. The Department was an extension of the Treasury that existed under the Articles of Confederation.

Today the Department is probably the most complex, at least in its diversity of responsibilities. Chief operating bureaus and divisions include the Infernal (sorry ... Internal) Revenue Service (IRS), the Secret Service, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (BATF), the Comptroller of the Currency, the Bureau of Engraving and Printing (stamps, paper money), the U.S. Mint (coins), the Bureau of Public Debt, the Federal Law Enforcement Center (law enforcement training), the Office of Thrift Supervision (oversees lending practices), the U.S. Savings Bond Division, and the Financial Management Service.


Sherman Occupies Atlanta

The capture of Atlanta, on September 1-2, 1864, represented the jumping-off point for Maj. General William T. Sherman's infamous "march to the sea", which ended in Savannah. But as important as Atlanta was to the South, the victory, combined with Admiral Farragut's nearby success in the battle of Mobile Bay, gave Union spirits a boost, and enhanced Lincoln's re-election chances in November.

The latter point seems poor reason for a devastating military crusade. But Sherman's sweep through Georgia represented one of the earliest acts of "total war" -- the conduct of war in such a way as to destroy not only the enemy's forces, but also his sources of supply and support, and thereby his will to fight. In destroying farms, plantations and factories all across the State, it was hoped that the long, bloody war could be brought to a speedier conclusion -- an outcome that would benefit both sides.

Alabama Blocks School Integration

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First ATM Machine

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Titanic Wreckage Found

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Labor Day

The idea of Peter J. McGuire, then-president of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America, Labor Day was recognized as a national holiday by Act of Congress on June 28, 1894

The first Labor Day parade was held on September 5, 1882 in New York City.

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