Sept. 1, 1894: In drought-stricken northern Minnesota, two small forest fires converge near the town of Hinckley and grow into a massive firestorm. At least 400 die as Hinckley and five other small towns are destroyed.

Marine Stewardship CouncilSept. 1, 1914: Martha, a passenger pigeon, dies at the Cincinnati Zoo. Martha is believed to be the very last member of a species that used to cloud the skies of the Midwestern U.S. by the hundreds of thousands.

Sept. 1, 1965: The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area is established along a 40-mile stretch of the Delaware River between Pennsylvania and New Jersey. The site is a battleground over the proposed construction of the Tocks Island Dam. The dam’s advocates say it’s needed for flood control, but the opponents, outraged over the possible loss of 40 miles of scenic river, win out. The dam project officially dies in 1992.

Sept. 1, 1988: As the U.S. presidential election campaign heats up, Vice President George H.W. Bush bashes his rival, Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis on the governor’s own turf. Referring to Boston’s “Harbor of Shame,” Bush accuses Dukakis of hindering the harbor’s cleanup.

Sept. 1, 2010: A pioneering ratings system meant to ensure consumers that they’re buying environmentally sound seafood (at right) comes under attack. The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) is criticized in an “opinion” piece in the journal Science. Penned by prominent marine scientists like Daniel Pauly, an early endorser of the MSC. Environmentalists and scientists have criticized MSC for approving several fisheries believed to be environmentally harmful.

Sept. 1, 2012:  The European Union delivers on a 2008 commitment by completing its total phase out of the sale of incandescent lightbulbs.

Photo: Walmart Stores/Flickr

This feature is compiled by Peter Dykstra, an MNN contributor and publisher of Environmental Health News and The Daily Climate.