World War II Timeline

  • Great Depression Begins

    Great Depression Begins
    When the stock market crashed in 1929, the world went into a serious economic decline of the 1930s. Many jobs were lost, and people were homeless.
  • Period: to

    World War II

  • Japan Conquers Manchuria in Northern China

  • Hitler Becomes Chancellor of Germany

    Hitler Becomes Chancellor of Germany
    Hitler became Chancellor of Germany because he led the fascist Nazi party, which was driven by racial superiority. He overthrew the German government and became Chancellor of Germany after the elections in 1932.
  • Roosevelt First Elected President

    Roosevelt First Elected President
    FDR was first elected president because many people trusted him after he helped the people who were badly affected by the Great Depression. He made the New Deal and was reelected before WWII.
  • Nuremberg Laws

    Nuremberg Laws
    The Nuremburg Laws were anti-Semitic laws that the Germans made. It affected Jews and other races. It progressively made their lives harder.
  • Hitler & Mussolini Form the Rome-Berlin Axis

  • Japan Invades China

  • Germany Invades Austria

    Germany Invades Austria
    Germany invaded Austria on March 12, 1938. The laws of Germany and its anti-Semitic acts were made there.
  • Britain's Appeasement of Germany

    Britain's Appeasement of Germany
    The Prime Minister of Britain, Neville Chamberlain, met with Hitler to reach an agreement. Germany would seize control of the Sudetenland and Hitler would stop looking for more territory. Winston Churchill thought that Hitler would break the appeasement.
  • Kristallnacht

    It was a pogrom (series of planned attacks) against Jews. It is referred to as “Night of Broken Glass”. Jewish homes, hospitals, and schools were destroyed and 91 Jews were killed, with another 30,000 going to concentration camps.
  • Germany & Soviet Union Have a Nonaggression Pact

  • Germany Invades Poland - blitzkrieg (start of WWII)

    Germany Invades Poland - blitzkrieg (start of WWII)
    Using blitzkrieg (German “lightning war” tactics), Germany invades Poland. They invaded Poland from the north, south and west.
  • Germany invades Denmark, Norway, Belgium, and France (Vichy France)

  • German air force (Luftwaffe) bombs London and other Civilian Targets in the Battle of Britain

  • Japan Joins the Axis Powers

  • Lend-Lease Act

    Lend-Lease Act
    The Lend-Lease Act was an act that allowed the US to lend weapons to Allies (Britain, Soviet Union, France and China). A total of $50.1 billion worth of supplies were shipped to the Allies.
  • Tuskgee Airmen

    Tuskgee Airmen
    African Americans were racially discriminated against in the army and outside as well. However, they completed about 1,500 missions during the war. Americans would not let African Americans fly until 1941.
  • Germany Invades the Soviet Union

  • Pearl Harbor

    Pearl Harbor
    Japan forces attack an American base in Hawaii, Pearl Harbor. Many ships were damaged or sunk, and 2,402 American soldiers were killed, with another 1,247 wounded. The result of this was that America declared war on the Japanese Empire, and Germany and Italy declared war on the US.
  • Japanese-American Internment

    Japanese-American Internment
    America relocated 127,000 Japanese-Americans to internment camps after the attack at Pearl Harbor. The camps weren’t as harsh as the camps in Europe, but they still weren’t pleasant to live in. About 112,000 Japanese Americans were on the West Coast.
  • The Nazis Implement the "Final Solution"

    The Nazis Implement the "Final Solution"
    The “Final Solution” was the answer to the Jewish question. It was a plan to annihilate the Jewish race from Europe. This can also be connected to the internment camps.
  • Bataan March

    Bataan March
    About 70,000 Filipino and Americans surrendered to Japan at the Bataan Peninsula. They marched 65 miles to a prison camp, where about 10,000 men died from beatings, shootings and starvation.
  • Manhattan Project

    Manhattan Project
    FDR signed an order which allowed America to build an atomic bomb, to use against the Japanese. It took three years to build and was tested in the desert. It was dropped on Hiroshima, Japan on August 6, 1945.
  • British forces stop the German Advance at El Alamein

  • Battle of Midway

    Battle of Midway
    The Battle of Midway is considered a turning point in World War II. The American and Japanese Navies fought off the island of Midway in the Pacific. Japan was hit with a heavy loss – they lost four carriers and 250 planes, while America lost one carrier and 150 planes.
  • Guadalcanal

    America won their first big battle on Japanese land, the island Guadalcanal. Americans used the Navajo Native American’s secret language. With this confusing language, they could transmit important messages and they recruited about 400 Navajos.
  • German Forces Surrender at Stalingrad

    German Forces Surrender at Stalingrad
    In September 1942, German forces attacked Stalingrad, a city in Russia. Hitler refused to let his army back down, even when they begged.
  • Rosie the Riveter

    Rosie the Riveter
    Rosie the Riveter represented feminism and women’s economic power during World War II. When the war started, many jobs were left open because men were enlisted into the army. Women took over their jobs, like in World War I.
  • D-Day

    The Allies invaded France, which later became to be known as the largest seaborne invasion in history. After midnight on June 6, the Allies invaded with 5,000 ships and 150,000 soldiers. Hitler was expecting something like this to happen.
  • Battle of the Bulge

    Battle of the Bulge
    The Battle of the Bulge was the final German assault in Belgium and Luxembourg. The battle ended on January 25, 1945. 120,000 Germans died, and 80,000 American soldiers died.
  • Yalta Conference

    Yalta Conference
    Allied leaders (Roosevelt, Churchill and Stalin) attended the Yalta Conference. There, they discussed the plans for the end of the war and the future of Europe. They also talked about establishing a postwar international peacekeeping organizations.
  • Iwo Jima

    Iwo Jima
    The U.S. invaded Iwo Jima, and won the battle on March 16. This provided a landing strip for U.S. airplanes, coming back from battle against Japan.
  • Okinawa

    The U.S. invaded Okinawa and won the battle on June 22. This also provided an island for base air operations for the U.S. During this battle, there were many Japanese kamikazes (suicide bombers) involved.
  • Roosevelt Dies, Truman Becomes President

  • Marshall Plan

    Marshall Plan
    The Marshall Plan was a plan that Congress approved Secretary of State George Marshall’s plan to help boost European economies. The U.S. gave more than $13 billion dollars to the nations of Europe.
  • Allied Forces Advance on Berlin, Germany Surrenders

    Allied Forces Advance on Berlin, Germany Surrenders
    Russia reached Berlin and Hitler committed suicide on April 30. After that, on May 8, German leaders surrendered and signed an unconditional surrender.
  • Formation of the United Nations

    Formation of the United Nations
    On April 25, 1945, 50 nations met in San Francisco to discuss a new peacekeeping organization to replace the weak and ineffective League of Nations. On June 26, 1945, all 50 nations ratified the charter, creating a new international peacekeeping body known as the United Nations. President Roosevelt had urged Americans not to turn backs on the world again.
  • Potsdam Conference

    Potsdam Conference
    The Potsdam Conference took place between July 17 and August 2, 1945. The Allies hosted the conference to plan the war’s end, and one decision was to put Nazi war criminals on trial.
  • Atomic Bombs Dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki

    Atomic Bombs Dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki
    America uses a B-29 bomber to drop the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, which killed about 75,000 inhabitants. When Japan refused to surrender, America dropped another bomb on August 9, on Nagasaki which killed another 40,000.
  • Japanese Officials Sign an Official Letter of Surrender on the U.S.S. Missouri, Ending World War II

  • Nuremberg Trials

    Nuremberg Trials
    The Nuremberg Trials took place between November 20, 1945 and October 1, 1946. There were 24 defendants, and 19 were found guilty, and 12 were sentenced to death. All of them were charged with crimes against humanity.