• 1933
  • 1934
  • 1935
  • 1936
  • 1937
  • 1938
  • 1939
  • 1940
  • 1941
  • 1942
  • 1943
  • 1944
  • 1945

1933

  • January 30 - February 1

    Adolf Hitler becomes chancellor of Germany.

  • February 27 - March 5

    Reichstag (German Parliament) arson leads to state of emergency. Hitler presents an emergency order that voids important basic civil rights.

  • March 5

    Reichstag elections: The Nazis gain 44 percent of the vote.

  • March 22

    The Nazis establish the Dachau (Germany) concentration camp to imprison (without trial) people they consider their enemies.

  • March 24

    The Nazis sponsor the Enabling Act, a bill that would give Hitler’s government dictatorial powers for four years. To make sure the law passes, the Nazis imprison Communists and potential opposition.

  • April 1

    The Nazis declare a boycott of all Jewish businesses in Germany.

  • April 7

    The Nazi government declares that Jews are debarred from working in the civil service and strips them of their equal rights.

  • April 21

    Jewish dietary laws prohibited; no kosher butchering is allowed.

  • April 25

    The school quota system limits the number of Jewish high school and university students in Germany.

  • May 10

    The Nazis burn thousands of anti-Nazi Jewish-authored and “degenerate” books.

  • July 14

    Forced sterilization of German citizens with congenital disabilities begins.

  • July 14

    Germany is proclaimed a one-party state.

  • October 14 - 19

    Germany quits the League of Nations and disarmament talks.

  • November 2

    The Nazi Party gets 92 percent of the vote in one-party elections.

1934

  • January 26

    The German-Polish Non-Aggression Pact is signed.

  • June 30

    “Night of the Long Knives”: Hitler orders the elimination of the main figures in the SA to prevent rivalry between the SA and the SS and the German army.

  • August 2

    German president Hindenburg dies: Hitler merges the offices of chancellor and president and becomes the Reichsfuehrer, thereby making him the sole and unrivalled leader of Germany.

1935

  • January 13

    Germany reclaims the Saar region (an area of Germany that was administered by France under League of Nations supervision following World War I in accordance with the Treaty of Versailles.

  • March 16

    Military conscription in Germany begins, violating the Treaty of Versailles.

  • May 31

    The German army becomes “all-Aryan,” meaning Jews are not allowed to serve.

  • September 15

    The Nuremberg Laws are enacted, defining who is a Jew according to racial theory, banning marriage between Jews and non-Jews, and making Jews second-class citizens.

1936

  • March 7

    The German army enters the Rhineland (region along the Rhine River in western Germany), violating the Treaty of Versailles.

  • July 16

    The Spanish Civil War begins.

  • August 1

    The Olympic Games begin in Berlin (Germany).

  • September 9

    The Four-Year Plan (the economic plan to prepare Germany for war) is unveiled.

  • October 25

    The Rome-Berlin Axis Agreement is signed between Italy and Germany based on political interests.

  • November 25

    Germany and Japan sign a military pact.

1937

  • March 21

    Pope Pius XI issues a statement against racism.

  • July 19

    Buchenwald (Germany) concentration camp is established.

  • November 5

    The German army is ordered to prepare for war.

1938

  • March 13

    Anschluss: Germany annexes Austria.

  • March 23

    Recognition of Jewish organizations in Germany is revoked.

  • June 14

    Jewish businesses have to register as such.

  • June 15

    “Operation June”: Mass arrests of Jews in the Reich and banishment to concentration camps begin.

  • July 6

    Anti-Jewish economic policies restrict Jews’ access to many fields of activity.

  • July 6 - 15

    Evian Conference: Representatives of Great Britain, United States, France, and other countries meet in Evian, France, to discuss the problem of Jewish refugees trying to emigrate from the Reich. The conference concludes with no practical outcome.

  • August 17

    Compulsory middle names (Sarah for women and Israel for men) for Jews in Germany are required in order to identify them as Jews.

  • September 29

    The Munich Agreement: England and France accept German annexation of parts of Czechoslovakia.

  • October 5

    Passports of German Jews are marked with the letter “J.”

  • October 28

    17,000 Polish-born Jews are expelled from Germany to Poland; most are interned in Zbaszyn (Poland).

  • November 7 - 10

    The Kristallnacht Pogrom: Almost one hundred Jews are murdered and Jewish synagogues and Jewish businesses are burned and vandalized across Germany and Austria.

  • November 10

    Italy adopts antisemitic racial laws.

  • November 12

    All Jewish businesses are forcibly handed over to Germans; Jews are forbidden from practicing medicine or law or attending universities; a fine of one billion Reichsmarks is imposed on Jews.

  • November 15

    Jewish children are banned from German schools.

1939

  • March 15

    Germans occupy Bohemia and Moravia, thus liquidating the Czechoslovak Republic.

  • March 28

    The civil war in Spain ends.

  • June 6

    The MS St. Louis, a ship crowded with 937 Jewish refugees, is turned away by Cuba, the United States, and other countries, and returns to Europe.

  • August 23

    Germany and the Soviet Union sign the Non-Aggression Pact; the pact includes a secret section that determines the partition of Poland.

  • September 1

    Germany invades Poland, beginning World War II.

  • September 3

    Great Britain, France, India, Australia, and New Zealand declare war on Germany.

  • September 17

    The Soviets invade Poland.

  • September 21

    Reinhard Heydrich (head of security police) orders the establishment of Jewish councils (Judenrate) and the concentration of Jews in the larger cities of Poland.

  • September 28

    Poland is partitioned between Germany and the Soviet Union.

  • October 4

    The Warsaw (Poland) Judenrat is established.

  • October 7

    Jewish “resettlement” in the Lublin district of Poland begins; plans are made to establish a Jewish “reservation.”

  • October 8

    The first ghetto is established in Piotrkow Trybunalski, Poland.

  • October 26

    Civil administration (Generalgouvernement) is established in Poland; Polish elite are persecuted and murdered; slave labor is imposed on Jews between the ages of 14–60.

  • November 23

    Jews in Poland are required to wear the Jewish Badge (Star of David).

  • November 30

    The Soviets invade Finland.

  • December 2

    The Nazis initiate use of gas vans to eliminate patients with mental disabilities.

1940

  • January 24

    Jewish property in Generalgouvernement is registered.

  • March

    The Katyn Massacre: The Soviets execute thousands of Polish officers in the Soviet-occupied part of Poland.

  • April 9

    Germany invades Denmark and Norway.

  • April 30

    The Lodz (Poland) ghetto is sealed.

  • May 10

    Germany invades Belgium and the Netherlands; Neville Chamberlain resigns; Winston Churchill becomes the prime minister of England.

  • May 26

    The Allies evacuate forces to England at Dunkirk.

  • June 14

    Germany occupies Paris; the first deportation of Polish political prisoners to Auschwitz (Poland) concentration camp begins.

  • June 18

    Hitler presents Mussolini with the Madagascar Plan, a plan to deport all Jews to the island near the shores of Eastern Africa.

  • July 10

    The Vichy France government is formed.

  • August 8

    The Battle of Britain begins.

  • August 17

    Germany declares the “total blockade of Britain.”

  • September 7

    The German “Blitz” on England reaches a climax with massive air raids on British cities.

  • October 3

    The French government sets fierce anti-Jewish legislation.

  • October 22

    Jewish businesses in occupied Netherlands are registered.

  • October 28

    Jewish property in Belgium is registered.

  • November 15

    The Warsaw ghetto is sealed.

1941

  • March 20

    The Krakow (Poland) ghetto is sealed.

  • April 6

    Germany invades Yugoslavia and Greece.

  • April 9

    Germany occupies Salonika, the largest Jewish community in Greece.

  • April 24

    The Lublin (Poland) ghetto is sealed.

  • June 6

    “Commissar Order”: Prior to the German invasion of the Soviet Union, the Wehrmacht high command authorizes its soldiers to murder any “suspect” of opposition, mainly Jews and Communists, thereby making the German army involved in war crimes in the occupied territories.

  • June 22

    “Operation Barbarossa”: The German invasion of the Soviet Union marks the beginning of the “Final Solution.”

  • June 23

    The Einsatzgruppen begin mass killings in the Soviet Union.

  • June 28

    The Romanian “Iron Guard” kill 1,500 Jews in Iasi, Romania.

  • June 30

    Germany occupies Lvov, Poland; 4,000 Jews are killed by July 3.

  • July 1

    Einsatzgruppe D begins operating in Bessarabia (Romania); 160,000 Jews are shot by August 31.

  • July 24

    The Kishinev (Romania) ghetto is established; 10,000 Jews are murdered.

  • July 31

    Hermann Goering orders Heydrich to plan the “Final Solution.”

  • July

    The murder of the Jews of Vilna (Lithuania) begins at Ponary, south of Vilna.

  • August 1

    50,000 Jews are confined in the Bialystok (Poland) ghetto.

  • August 5

    Murders in Pinsk (Belorussia); 10,000 are Jews killed in three days.

  • September 1

    Jews in Slovakia and the protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia are ordered to wear the Jewish Badge.

  • September 3

    The first experimental gassings are conducted at Auschwitz.

  • September 8

    The siege of Leningrad (Russia) begins.

  • September 15

    150,000 Jews are deported to Transnistria between Romania and the Soviet Union; 90,000 die.

  • September 19

    German Jews are ordered to wear the Jewish Badge.

  • September 29 - 30

    33,771 Jews are murdered at Babi Yar near Kiev (Ukraine).

  • October 8

    The Vitebsk (Belorussia) ghetto is liquidated; Germans murder more than 16,000 Jews.

  • October 15

    Deportation of German and Austrian Jews to ghettos in the East begins.

  • October 24

    20,000 Jews are transported to Dalnik (Ukraine); Germans and Romanians murder all of them.

  • October 28

    Germans murder thousands of Kovno (Lithuania) Jews.

  • October

    The first transport (of prisoners of war) reaches Majdanek (Poland) extermination camp.

  • November 24

    A ghetto-camp is established in Theresienstadt, near Prague (Czechoslovakia).

  • November 30

    30,000 Riga (Latvia) Jews are arrested and subsequently shot at Rumbuli.

  • December 6

    The Soviets launch a counteroffensive on Moscow.

  • December 7

    The Japanese attack Pearl Harbor; the United States enters World War II; four days later, Germany and Italy declare war on the United States.

  • December 7

    The German army issues “Night and Fog”: an order prescribing repressive measures against resistance movements in the German-occupied countries of Western Europe.

  • December 8

    Gas vans are introduced at Chelmno (Poland) extermination camp.

  • December 21

    Romanians murder more than 40,000 Jews at the Bogdanovka (Romania) camp.

  • December 22

    33,500 of 57,000 Jews in Vilna have been murdered.

  • December 31

    The Jewish underground in Vilna issues a partisan manifesto calling Jews to fight back against the Germans.

1942

  • January 14

    The concentration and expulsion of Dutch Jewry begins.

  • January 16

    Germans begin deportation of more than 10,000 Jews from Lodz to Chelmno.

  • January 20

    The Wannsee Conference takes place.

  • January 21

    The Jewish underground is established in Vilna.

  • February 24

    The Germans deport more than 30,000 Jews from Lodz to their deaths in Chelmno.

  • March 26

    58,000 Slovakian Jews are deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau (Poland).

  • March 28

    The first transport of approximately 1,000 French Jews to Auschwitz-Birkenau begins.

  • April 8

    The Einsatzgruppen report that there are no Jews left in the Crimea.

  • May

    The first mass killing in Sobibor (Poland) extermination camp occurs.

  • May 3

    Jews in Holland are ordered to wear the Jewish Badge.

  • May 27

    The Czech underground assassinates Reinhard Heydrich; in retaliation, the Germans obliterate the Czech village of Lidice.

  • June 1

    Jews in Belgium and France are ordered to wear the Jewish Badge.

  • June 2

    The BBC announces 700,000 Jews have been killed in Poland.

  • June 22 - July

    The first transports of Jews from Drancy internment camp in France to Auschwitz-Birkenau begin; Germans begin deporting Belgian and Dutch Jews to Auschwitz-Birkenau.

  • July 19

    Himmler orders elimination of all Jews in Generalgouvernement by the end of 1942.

  • July 22

    The mass deportation from the Warsaw ghetto to Treblinka (Poland) extermination camp begins.

  • July 28

    The Jewish Fighting Organization (Z.O.B.) is founded in Warsaw.

  • August 8 - 13

    The US delays information on a plan to annihilate Jews to verify sources. Germans and Croatians begin deporting Croatian Jews to Auschwitz-Birkenau.

  • August 10

    Deportations from Lvov to Belzec (Poland) extermination camp begin; 50,000 Jews are gassed.

  • September 12

    The Battle of Stalingrad (Russia) begins.

  • October 23

    The British begin a counteroffensive at El Alamein, Egypt.

  • October 28

    The first deportations from Theresienstadt to Auschwitz-Birkenau begin.

  • November 8

    The Allies invade North Africa.

  • November 19

    The Soviets counterattack near Stalingrad (Russia).

  • November 25 - 26

    A massive round-up of Norwegian Jewry by Germans and Norwegian collaborators begins.

  • December

    Deportations to Belzec stop.

  • December 17

    The Allies condemn German mass murder.

1943

  • January 18

    Jews launch an armed resistance to deportations from the Warsaw ghetto.

  • February 2

    The Germans surrender at Stalingrad.

  • February 5

    The deportation of 10,000 Jews from Bialystok to Treblinka begins.

  • February 25

    The first transports from Salonika to Auschwitz-Birkenau begin.

  • February 26

    The first transport of Sinti-Roma reaches Auschwitz-Birkenau.

  • March 4

    Jews of Thrace (Greece) are deported to Treblinka.

  • March 20

    The first deportations from Salonika arrive at Auschwitz-Birkenau.

  • April 19

    The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising begins.

  • April 19

    Bermuda Conference: A conference convened by the United States and Great Britain ostensibly to find solutions for wartime refugees.

  • May 8

    The leaders of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising die.

  • June 1

    The Lvov ghetto is liquidated.

  • June 21

    Himmler orders liquidation of all ghettos in occupied Soviet territories.

  • June 28

    Four crematoria are completed at Auschwitz-Birkenau.

  • July 10

    The Allies invade Sicily (Italy).

  • July 25

    Mussolini is deposed.

  • August 2

    The uprising at Treblinka begins.

  • August 8

    The first of five organized groups leave the Vilna ghetto to join the partisans.

  • August 15

    The Bialystok ghetto is liquidated.

  • September 1

    The Vilna underground uprising fails.

  • September 3

    Belgian Jews are arrested for deportation to Auschwitz-Birkenau.

  • September 23

    The Vilna ghetto is liquidated.

  • October 1 - 2

    Danish Jews are rescued.

  • October 14

    The uprising at Sobibor begins.

  • October 18

    Jews of Rome are deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau.

  • October 21

    The Minsk (Belorussia) ghetto is liquidated.

  • October 25

    Dnepropetrovsk (Ukraine) is liberated; 15 of 80,000 Jews remain.

  • November 3

    Germans launch “Operation Harvest Festival” (Erntefest), concentrated large scale mass executions to liquidate all remaining Jews in the Lublin district and Lublin ghetto.

  • November 17

    Jewish partisans liberate Jews in Borshchev (Ukraine).

1944

  • January 26

    The War Refugee Board is established.

  • January 27

    The Siege of Leningrad ends.

  • March 18

    Hitler orders German troops into Hungary.

  • March 24

    President Roosevelt warns Hungary to refrain from anti-Jewish measures.

  • April 7

    Two Jewish prisoners deliver “Auschwitz Protocols.”

  • April 16

    The Hungarian government registers Jews and confiscates their property.

  • May 11

    Allied forces mount a major offensive in central Italy.

  • May 15

    Mass deportations of Hungarian Jews to Auschwitz-Birkenau begin.

  • June 4

    Americans occupy Rome.

  • June 6

    D-Day (Invasion of Normandy)

  • June 13

    Germany launches the first V-1 rockets at England.

  • July 3

    Minsk is liberated; few of 80,000 Jews survive.

  • July 7

    The Hungarian government halts deportations.

  • July 8

    The Kovno ghetto is liquidated.

  • July 13

    Jewish partisans help liberate Vilna; 2,500 of 57,000 Jews survive.

  • July 20

    An attempt to assassinate Hitler fails.

  • July 22

    Lvov is liberated; 110,000 Jews are dead.

  • July 23

    The Red Cross visits Theresienstadt.

  • July 25

    The Soviet Army liberates Majdanek.

  • August 7

    The liquidation of the Lodz ghetto begins; 74,000 Jews are deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau.

  • August 28

    The Slovak National Uprising begins.

  • September 4

    Antwerp (Belgium) is liberated; fewer than 5,000 Jews survive.

  • September 28

    Churchill announces formation of Jewish Brigade.

  • October 3

    The Polish uprising in Warsaw is crushed.

  • October 7

    The Sonderkommando uprising at Auschwitz-Birkenau begins.

  • November

    Germans stop gassings at Auschwitz-Birkenau.

  • November 8

    Deportations from Budapest (Hungary) resume.

  • December 16

    The Battle of the Bulge

  • January

1945

  • January 16

    The Soviets liberate half of Budapest.

  • January 17

    The Soviets liberate Warsaw; few Jews remain.

  • January 18

    Auschwitz-Birkenau is abandoned; the death march of prisoners begins.

  • January 19

    The Soviets liberate the Lodz ghetto.

  • January 27

    The Soviets liberate Auschwitz-Birkenau.

  • February 1

    40,000 prisoners are marched out of Gross-Rosen (Poland) concentration camp.

  • February 13 - 14

    Royal Air Force (RAF) and United States Air Force (USAF) air raids devastate Dresden (Germany).

  • April 11

    Americans liberate Buchenwald.

  • April 12

    President Roosevelt dies; he is succeeded by Harry Truman.

  • April 15

    British forces liberate Bergen-Belsen (Germany) concentration camp.

  • April 25

    American and Soviet troops meet at the River Elbe near Torgau, Germany.

  • April 28

    Mussolini is shot.

  • April 30

    Hitler and his companion, Eva Braun, commit suicide.

  • May 2

    The Soviets occupy Berlin.

  • May 5

    Mauthausen (Austria) concentration camp is liberated by the US Army.

  • May 7

    Germany surrenders to the Allies.

  • May 8

    V-E (Victory in Europe) Day

  • July 16

    The Potsdam Conference

  • August 6 - 9

    The United States drops atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki (Japan).

  • October 18

    The Nuremberg Trials begin.