On this day in 1611 Henry Hudson, his son, and 7 supporters are set adrift by the mutinous crew of the HMS Discovery. Hudson and his crew were in search of the fabled northwest passage when he discovered the bay that bears his name in Canada. He was trapped there by the weather for the winter and when the ice in the bay melted, his crewmen mutinied.
On this day in 1944 Franklin Roosevelt signed into legislation the GI bill. The war may have pulled the country out of the Great Depression, but the GI bill helped the economy boom afterward. It gave returning soldiers breaks on loans and education which allowed them a smooth transition back to everyday life. The result was a more educated populous and economic growth that was unprecedented.
On this day in 1945 the battle of Okinawa ended. The island had some of the fiercest fighting of the entire war due to the Japanese resolve to not surrender their homeland. Okinawa was defended by 100,000 Japanese soldiers, most of whom lost their lives in the defense of the island. This battle hastened the push for results with the Manhattan project. The United States did not want another drawn out battle for the remaining Japanese home islands.