Nazi Germany

  • Prussian victory in the Franco-Prussian War

    France was defeated in the Franco-Prussian War, which also led to the creation of the unified German nation-state.
  • Wilhelm II became Emperor of Germany

  • Birth of Adolf Hitler

    Adolf Hitler was born in the small town of Braunau in Austria
  • The appointment of General Schlieffen

    Alfred von Schlieffen became the Chief of the Imperial German General Staff
  • The completion of the Schlieffen Plan

    Schlieffen completed his memorandum on German war plans.
  • Schlieffen retires

    Schlieffen retired and was replaced by Helmuth von Moltke.
  • Schlieffen's death

    The death of General von Schlieffen.
  • Hitler moves to Munich

    (NON-SPECIFIC DATE) Hitler moved from Austria to Munich in order to avoid compulsory military service in the Austrian armed forces.
  • Assassination of the Archduke

    The assassination of Archduke Franz-Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary and his wife in Sarajevo.
  • Kaiser offers support to Austria-Hungary

    Kaiser Wilhelm II and Chancellor von Bethmann Hollweg offered unconditional support to Austria-Hungary in dealing with Serbia.
  • Austria's ultimatum

    Austria issued an ultimatum to Serbia, giving Serbia 48 hours to reply.
  • Serbia's response

    Serbia replied to the ultimatum, accepting most of the demands.
  • Outbreak of World War One

    Austria-Hungary, backed by Germany, declared war on Serbia.
  • Russian mobilisation

    Tsar Nicholas II authorised Russian mobilisation.
  • Germany declared war on Russia

    Germany declared war on Russia. France and Germany began to mobilise.
  • Hitler joined the Germany army

    (NON-SPECIFIC DATE) After the outbreak of World War One, Hitler joined the German army. He had to request permission to sign up for the Bavarian Army, because of his Austrian citizenship.
  • Invasion of Luxembourg

    German troops invaded Luxembourg. Germany issued an ultimatum to Belgium, demanding access through Belgian territory.
  • Germany declared war on France

    Germany declared war on France. Italy announced its decision to remain neutral.
  • Britain declared war on Germany

  • Austria-Hungary declared war on Russia

  • Failure of the Schlieffen Plan

    The Battle of the Marne marked the failure of the Schlieffen Plan.
  • Hindenburg appointed Chief of the General Staff

    Paul von Hindenburg appointed Chief of the General Staff
  • Unrestricted submarine warfare

    Germany announced the policy of unrestricted submarine warfare.
  • US declares war on Germany

  • October Revolution in Russia

    The Bolsheviks came to power in Russia.
  • Treaty of Brest-Litovsk

    Germany imposed the severe Treaty of Brest-Litovsk on defeated Russia.
  • Allies break German line near Amiens

  • German High Command hands power to Reichstag

    Hindenburg and Ludendorff inform the Kaiser that the war was lost and the German High Command hands power to the stunned Reichstag. They recommend peace with the Triple Entente and the Reichstag begins to negotiate an armistice.
  • Max von Baden appointed Chancellor

    Prince Max von Baden appointed chancellor, and a civilian government came to power.
  • Revolution - Kiel Mutiny

    Mutiny in parts of the German navy at Kiel and Wilhelmshaven.
  • Abdication of the Kaiser and appointment of Friedrich Ebert

    Kaiser Wilhelm II abdicated and then went into exile. Prince Max handed the chancellorship to Friedrich Ebert, leader of the SPD. Philipp Scheidemann declared Germany to the be a republic and the Ebert-Groener Pact was signed.
  • Armistice signed

    The armistice was signed, bringing an end to World War One
  • Formation of German Communist Party

  • Revolution - Spartacist Uprising began in Berlin

  • Freikorps units began to suppress the Spartacists

  • Elections held

    Elections were held for a new German parliament.
  • First meeting of the Weimar Republic

    The first meeting of the new parliament took place in Weimar. Phillip Scheidemann became the new chancellor. Friedrich Ebert became the first President of the Weimar Republic.
  • Scheidemann government resigned

    The Scheidemann government resigned rather than sign the Treaty of Versailles.
  • German signed the Treaty of Versailles

    Germany signed the Treaty of Versailles. The allied blockade of Germany was lifted.
  • Hitler joined the German Workers' Party in Munich

    (APPROXIMATE DATE) After investigating the party on 12 September, Hitler received a postcard informing him of his new status as a member of the party.
  • Kapp Putsch

  • The SA was formed

    SA (Sturmabteilung) was formed.
  • First reparation payment

    Germany made its first reparation payment to the Allies.
  • Occuption of the Ruhr

    Germany began to default on the delivery of coal as part of the reparation payment to France in November, as well as their timber reparation payments in December. French and Belgium troops occupied the Ruhr and Germany declared a policy passive resistance.
  • Hyperinflation

    The exchange rate for the US dollar equalled more than 350,000 marks. The German economy experienced hyperinflation.
  • Gustav Stresemann became chancellor

  • End of passive resistance

    Stresemann ends the policy of passive resistance.
  • Enabling Act

    The Reichstag passed an Enabling Act, giving the Stresemann government the power to deal with hyperinflation.
  • New currency introducted

    A new currency, the Rentenmark, was introduced. The Stresemann government fell.
  • Munich Beer Hall Putsch

    (8-9 NOVEMBER) The Nazis attempted to take power in Munich in the Beer Hall Putsch.
  • Hitler sentenced to prison

    Hitler was sentenced to five years' imprisonment as a result of his involvement in the Putsch. He began work on Mein Kamp.
  • The Dawes Plan announced

    The Dawes Plan, which revised Germany's reparation payment, was announced.
  • Hitler left prison

    Hitler left prison after serving nine months of his sentence. He was afforded a number of luxuries and treated favourably during his imprisonment.
  • President Friedrich Ebert died

  • Hindenburg became President

  • Last of French troops left the Ruhr

  • Treaty of Berlin

    Germany and the Soviet Union signed the Treaty of Berlin
  • Germany joined the League of Nations

    Germany joined the LON after the negotiation of the Locarno Treaty with the Allies in October 1925. The Treaty was a series of agreements whereby Germany, France, Belgium, Great Britain, and Italy mutually guaranteed peace in western Europe.
  • Reichstag elections

    The Reichstag elections were held. The Nazi Party won only 12 seats. Nazi Party membership reached 178,000.
  • The Young Plan signed

    The Young Plan reduced Germany's reparation figure.
  • Great Depression begins

  • Fall of the Müller government

  • Heinrich Brüning appointed chancellor

  • Reichstag elections held

    Elections for the Reichstag were held. The Nazis won 18.3 per cent of the vote, and 107 seats.
  • Unemployment reaches 4.9 million in Germany

  • Hoover declares one-year postponement of reparation payments

  • Emergency Decrees

    (NON-SPECIFIC DATE) Nine Presidential Emergency Decrees were issued to deal with the economy
  • Hitler became German citizen

    On 25 February 1932, the interior minister of Brunswick, Dietrich Klagges, who was a member of the NSDAP, appointed Hitler as administrator for the state's delegation to the Reichsrat in Berlin, making Hitler a citizen of Brunswick, and thus of Germany.
  • Presidential Elections

    No one candidate won an absolute majority
  • Second round of presidential elections

    Paul von Hindenburg, at 83, was re-elected president.
  • Fall of the Brüning government

  • Franz von Papen appointed chancellor

  • Reichstag elections

    The Nazis won 230 seats, becoming the largest party in the German parliament
  • Hitler offered vice-chancellor

    Hitler was offered the position of vice-chancellor, but he rejected it.
  • Reichstag dissolved

    The Reichstag met and was immediately dissolved. Papen hoped to destroy the alliance between the Nazis and the Centre Party, and suspended elections. The Communists put forward a vote of no-confidence in the Papen government. The Nazis and the Centre Party supported the Communist motion. Papen called another election.
  • Reichstag elections

    The Nazi vote declared and the KPD vote increased. The Papen government resigned.
  • General Kurt von Schleicher appointed chancellor

  • Papen and Hitler meet to discuss alliance

    (NON-SPECIFIC DATE) Papen and Hitler met twice in secret to discuss a political alliance and orchestrate the fall of the Schleicher government.
  • Unemployment reached almost 6 million

  • Fall of Schleicher government

  • Hitler appointed Chancellor

    Hitler appointed Chancellor of Germany and Papen became vice-chancellor.
  • Reichstag Fire

  • Presidential Decree

    Presidential decree was issued For the Protection of People and State. The regulations suspended important provisions of the German constitution, especially those safeguarding individual rights and due process of law.
  • Air Ministry began in secret

    (NON-SPECIFIC DATE) A secret Air Ministry operation began under the control of Hermann Göring.
  • Reichstag elections

    The Nazis won 43.9 percent of the vote.
  • First concentration camps opened in Germany

    First concentration camp established in Dachau shortly after Hitler became Chancellor.
  • Goebbels appointed Minister for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda

  • Reichstag of the Third Reich opened

    The first Reichstag of the Third Reich opened with a special ceremony at Potsdam.
  • Enabling Act passed

    The "Law for the Removal of the Distress of People and State" passed in the Reichstag
  • Law for the Coordination of the States with the Reich issued

    This internal consolidation of power to remake Germany as a Nazi state was known as Gleichschaltung. The term is a German word that means “coordination” or “synchronization.” Under Gleichschaltung, German political, social, and cultural life were rearranged to serve Nazi goals.
  • Law for the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service issued

    Excludes Jews and other political opponents of the Nazis from all civil service positions. The law initially exempts those who had worked in the civil service since August 1, 1914, those who were veterans of World War I, or those with a father or son killed in action in World War I.
  • Law Against Overcrowding of German Schools passed

    Removed many Jewish students from schools.
  • The Gestapo is established

    The Gestapo (Geheime Staatspolizei) - the secret police - was set up.
  • Burning of un-German books

  • Trade Union Movement abolished

    The German Labour Front (DAF) was set up in its place.
  • SS assumed control of concentration camp system

  • Law Against the Establishment of Political Parties issued

    The Nazi Party became the only legal political party in Germany.
  • Reich Chamber of Culture established

  • Hereditary Farm Law passed

    Banned Jews from owning farmland.
  • Editorial Law passed

    Gave the government control over the press.
  • Germany left League of Nations

  • Reichstag elections

    The Nazi Party won every seat in the German parliament
  • Polish-German Non-Aggression Pact signed

  • Law for the Reconstruction of the Reich issued

    Effectively abolished all German states, further unifying the German nation.
  • Reichstag abolished

  • Himmler appointed Head of Gestapo

  • People's Court established

    Set up as part of the Judicial System to deal with crimes against the state.
  • Law for the Promotion of Marriage passed

    (NON-SPECIFIC DATE) Married couples who were passed as "genetically healthy" were eligible for a loan of 1000 Reichmarks, provided the woman gave up her job at the time of the wedding and took no paid employment as long as her husband was earning an income. One quarter of the loan was cancelled on the birth of each child. Childless couples and single men paid more taxes to help fund the financial arrangement.
  • Night of the Long Knives

    Ernst Röhm and the leadership of the SA were suppressed.
  • Hindenburg died. Hitler becomes Führer.

    President Paul von Hindenburg died. The position of president was abolished and Hitler combined the offices of president and chancellor. The German army swore a personal oath of loyalty to Hitler himself.
  • Conscription re-introduced

    Germany violated the Treaty of Versailles by reintroducing conscription
  • Italy invaded Abyssinia

  • German troops re-occupied the Rhineland

  • Spanish Civil War began

    German and Italian troops entered Spain to assist General Franco.
  • Olympic Games held in Berlin

  • Lebensborn program began

    (NON-SPECIFIC DATE) The Four-Year Plan for economic self-sufficiency and rearmament commenced. The Lebensborn program began under the control of the SS.
  • German-Italian treaty initiated the Rome-Berlin axis

  • Neville Chamberlain became Prime Minister of Britain

  • Hossbach Memorandum

    The summary of a meeting in Berlin on 5 November 1937 between German dictator Adolf Hitler and his military and foreign policy leadership in which Hitler's future expansionist policies were outlined.
  • Unemployment dropped to 1 million

  • The Anschluss

    Germany incorporated Austria into the Reich.
  • De-certification of Jewish doctors

    (NON-SPECIFIC DATE) All Jewish doctors were removed from the medical register and were permitted to treat only Jewish patients. Forced to refer to themselves as "sick-treaters" rather than doctors.
  • Further restriction of Jewish freedoms

    (AUGUST-OCTOBER) All Jewish lawyers were deprived of their right to work. All Jews were required to add the names "Sarah" or "Israel" to their names. All Jewish businesses had to be registered. All Jews were required to have the letter "J" stamped in red in their passports.
  • Munich Conference

    The Munich Agreement or Munich Betrayal was an agreement concluded at Munich on 30 September 1938, by Nazi Germany, the United Kingdom, the French Third Republic, and the Kingdom of Italy. It provided "cession to Germany of the Sudeten German territory" of Czechoslovakia.
  • Kristallnacht (The Night of Broken Glass)

    (9-10 NOVEMBER) The destruction of Jewish synagogues and property across much of Germany. New regulations excluded the Jewish population from theatres, concert halls, cinemas, parks, swimming pools, restaurants and holiday resorts. Jewish children were totally excluded from German school.s
  • Hitler's annihilation speech

    Hitler delivered a speech to the Reichstag in which he threatened the annihilation of the Jews.
  • Germany occupied Czechoslovakia

    Germany occupied the rest of Czechoslovakia. Britain and France respond by giving guarantees to Poland
  • Soviet-German Non-Aggression Pact was signed

    Also referred to as Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact.
  • Germany invaded Poland

  • Outbreak of World War Two

  • Britain and France declared war on Germany

  • Start of T4 program

    (NON-SPECIFIC DATE) Hitler ordered the start of T4, the involuntary euthanasia program in Germany.
  • Germany invaded Norway and Denmark

  • Germany invaded Holland, Belgium, Luxembourg and France

  • German troops entered Paris

  • Surrender of France

  • The Battle of Britain began

  • The start of the Blitz

  • Deportations to the Warsaw Ghetto (Poland) began

  • Afrika Korps arrive in North Africa

    General Erwin Rommel leads the Africa Korps.
  • Germany invaded Greece

  • Germany invaded Yugoslavia

  • Operation Barbarossa began

    Germany began the invasion of the Soviet Union.
  • Preparation for the Final Solution

    Reinhard Heydrich received orders from Hermann Göring to prepare for the "final solution of the Jewish problem".
  • Yellow Star of David

    All Jews required to wear the yellow Star of David.
  • Deportations of Jews from Greater Germany to the East began

  • Pearl Harbor attack

    Japan attacked the United States naval base at Pearl Harbor
  • Germany declared war on the United States

  • The Wannsee Conference

    Plans were confirmed for a European-wide deportation of the Jews, and genocide.
  • Albert Speer appointed Minister for Armaments and Munitions

  • Germans begin "total war"

    Goebbels called on Germans to wage "total war".
  • The Battle for Stalingrad begins

  • Treblinka extermination camp opened in Poland

  • Battle of El Alamein begins

  • First American bombing raids began over Germany

  • Germany surrenders in Stalingrad

  • Himmler orders liquidation of all Polish ghettos

    SS chief Heinrich Himmler orders the liquidation of remaining ghettos in the Generalgouvernement and removal of the Jews capable of work to forced-labor camps and those incapable of work to killing centers in German-occupied Poland
  • Mussolini overthrown in Italy

  • Soviet troops enter Poland

  • Hungarian Jews were sent to Poland

  • D-Day

    Battle of Normandy
  • Paris was liberated

  • Auschwitz ceased to function as an extermination camp

  • Hitler returned to Berlin to make his last stand

  • Dresden destroyed in air raid

  • Allies cross Rhine River

  • Death of Franklin D Roosevelt

  • Soviet troops began the offensive to take Berlin

  • Mussolini was executed

  • Soviet troops took the ruins of German Reichstag building

  • Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun committed suicide

  • Joseph Goebbels and his wife committed suicide after killing their six children

  • The war in Europe came to an end