World War II

  • Nuremberg Laws

    Nuremberg Laws
    At the annual party rally in Nuremberg, a new set of rules were introduced relating to Jews. The Jews were not to be with anybody with German blood. The laws did not define Jews as somebody who practiced the Jewish religion, but anybody who has grandparents who were Jewish.
  • Munich Pact

    Munich Pact
    The Munich Pact was an attempt to avoid war at all costs (appeasement). It was signed at the Munich Conference in 1938 by Great Britain, Italy, France, and Germany. They let Germany take Sudetenland in Czechoslovakia, but it didn't matter because Hitler continued to conquer the rest of Czechoslovakia anyway. The Munich Pact also had provisions for Hungary and Poland to claim parts of Czechoslovakia.
  • Germany Invades Poland

    Germany Invades Poland
    On this day in 1939, German forces bombard Poland on land and from the air, as Adolf Hitler seeks to regain lost territory and ultimately rule Poland. World War II had begun. The German invasion of Poland was a primer on how Hitler intended to wage war--what would become the "blitzkrieg" strategy.
  • Neutrality Act is passed

    Neutrality Act is passed
    Although President Roosevelt has declared American neutrality in the war in Europe, a Neutrality Act is signed that allows the US to send arms and other aid to Britain and France.
  • Lend Lease Bill

    Lend Lease Bill
    Roosevelt introduces his 'Lend Lease' bill to the House of Representatives. This allowed the fighting allies to pay the USA back in kind, but after the war. He likened this to 'lending a neighbour a garden hose to put out a fire'.
  • Atlantic Charter

    Atlantic Charter
    the Atlantic Charter, a joint proclamation by the United States and Britain declaring that they were fighting the Axis powers to "ensure life, liberty, independence and religious freedom and to preserve the rights of man and justice."
  • Germany and Italy declare war on USA

    Germany and Italy declare war on USA
    In support of their Axis ally Japan, Germany and Italy declare war on the United States on December 11. In the United States, Congress responds by approving President Roosevelt’s request for a declaration of war against Germany and Italy.
  • Bataan Death March

    Bataan Death March
    The Bataan Death March was a 70-mile forced march of American and Filipino prisoners of war by Japanese forces during World War II. Anyone who fell behind, complained, had a souvenir taken from a fallen Japanese soldier, or even looked at one of the Japanese wrong was bayoneted or shot. Some prisoners were shot for stopping to fill their canteens at a road-side ditch. In total, some 18,000 - 20,000 of the POWs died on the Bataan Death March, which ended up taking one week.
  • The Doolittle Raid

    The Doolittle Raid
    air attack on Japan, launched from the aircraft carrier Hornet and led by Lieutenant Colonel James H. Doolittle. The modern B-25B "Mitchell" medium bomber was selected as the delivery vehicle
  • Battle of Coral Sea

    Battle of Coral Sea
    The Battle of the Coral Sea was a major naval battle of World War II between the Imperial Japanese Navy and Allied naval and air forces from the United States and Australia. The battle was the first fleet action in which aircraft carriers engaged each other. It was also the first naval battle in history in which neither side's ships sighted or fired directly upon the other.
  • WAAC established

    WAAC established
    The Womans Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC) was established “for the purpose of making available to the national defense the knowledge, skill, and special training of women of the nation.” The women were pleased but unhappy about not being part of a regular army.
  • Battle of Midway

    Battle of Midway
    The Battle of Midway, fought over and near the tiny U.S. mid-Pacific base at Midway atoll, represents the strategic high water mark of Japan's Pacific Ocean war. Prior to this action, Japan possessed general naval superiority over the United States and could usually choose where and when to attack. After Midway, the two opposing fleets were essentially equals, and the United States soon took the offensive.
  • Battle of Stalingrad

    Battle of Stalingrad
    The Battle of Stalingrad was a major battle of World War II in which Nazi Germany and its allies fought the Soviet Union for control of the city of Stalingrad. The battle was the largest battle on the Eastern Front and was marked by brutality and disregard for military and civilian casualties. The heavy losses inflicted on the German army made it a turning point in the war.
  • Operation Torch

    Operation Torch
    Operation Torch was the name given to the Allied invasion of French North Africa in November 1942. Operation Torch was the first time the British and Americans had jointly worked on an invasion plan together. Three landing sites were chosen – Casablanca, Oran and Algiers. French resistance had been minimal as were Allied casualties
  • Casablanca Conference

    Casablanca Conference
    From January 14 to January 24, 1943, was held in Casablanca, Morocco. The purpose of the conference took steps toward planning the allied strategy and the end of the war. Initially, it was a meeting between Roosevelt, Churchill. Stalin was supposed to come but he didn't. The conference gave a direction for the rest of the war.
  • Battle of Tarawa

    Battle of Tarawa
    Tarawa's military significance lay in its strategic position as the entrance of the U.S. push through the central Pacific to the Philippine Islands. The Battle of Tarawa was partly a product of poor U.S. planning. The marines sustained nearly 3,000 casualties, and there were only 17 Japanese survivors.
  • D-day Invasion

    D-day Invasion
    The Western Allies landed in northern France, opening the long-awaited "Second Front" against Adolf Hitler's Germany. Though they had been fighting in mainland Italy for some nine months, the Normandy invasion was in a strategically more important region, setting the stage to drive the Germans from France and ultimately destroy the National Socialist regime.
  • Concentration Camps Discovered

    Concentration Camps Discovered
    The Russian army marched near Lublin in Poland and they came across the abandoned Majdanek concentration camp, whose prisoners already had been herded off on a death march away from the advancing Russian troops. Majdanek was burned in attempt hide its existance as the Germans retreated from the region but the remains of gas chambers were evident. This was the first major concentration camp discovered by those fighting against Germany.
  • Battle of the Bulge

    Battle of the Bulge
    The Battle of the Bulge, fought over the winter months of 1944 – 1945, was the last major Nazi offensive against the Allies in World War Two. The battle was a last ditch attempt by Hitler to split the Allies in two in their drive towards Germany and destroy their ability to supply themselves.
  • Battle of Iwo Jima

    Battle of Iwo Jima
    The Battle of Iwo Jima was a major battle in which the United States fought for and captured the island of Iwo Jima from the Empire of Japan. The capture of Iwo Jima was part of a three-point plan the Americans had for winning the war in the Far East. The Americans won by a land-slide, and there was absolutely no way the Japanese could have won.
  • Battle of Okinawa

    Battle of Okinawa
    The capture of Okinawa was part of a three-point plan the Americans had for winning the war in the Far East. It resulted in the largest casualties with over 100,000 Japanese casualties and 50,000 casualties for the Allies. The Battle of Okinawa has been called the largest sea-land-air battle in history.
  • Adolf Hitler commits suicide

    Adolf Hitler commits suicide
    Hitler was in distress because the Soviets were going to invade his bunker. Hitler and his wife then went back into their private quarters, and several moments later a gunshot was heard. After waiting a few moments, at 3:30 p.m., Bormann and Goebbels entered and found the body of Hitler sprawled on the sofa, dripping with blood from a gunshot to his right temple. Eva Braun had died from swallowing poison
  • V-E Day

    V-E Day
    This day marked Europe's Victory over Germany. The unconditional surrender of Germany was ratified on May 8th. London celebrated for two days
  • The Atomic Bomb

    The Atomic Bomb
    The decision to use the atomic bomb was made by President Truman. The justification for using the atomic bomb was that it ended the war, or at least ended it sooner. Within the first two to four months of the bombings, the acute effects killed 90,000–166,000 people in Hiroshima and 60,000–80,000 in Nagasaki, with roughly half of the deaths in each city occurring on the first day.
  • Surrender of Japan

    Surrender of Japan
    The surrender of Japan in brought the hostilities of World War II to a close. The ceremonies took place on board the battleship USS Missouri, anchored with other United States' and British ships in Tokyo Bay