EDUCATOR RESOURCE: TIMELINE
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.
Reichstag elections: The Nazis gain 44 percent of the vote.
The Nazis establish the Dachau (Germany) concentration camp to imprison (without trial) people they consider their enemies.
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.
The Nazis declare a boycott of all Jewish businesses in Germany.
The Nazi government declares that Jews are debarred from working in the civil service and strips them of their equal rights.
Jewish dietary laws prohibited; no kosher butchering is allowed.
The school quota system limits the number of Jewish high school and university students in Germany.
The Nazis burn thousands of anti-Nazi Jewish-authored and “degenerate” books.
Forced sterilization of German citizens with congenital disabilities begins.
Germany is proclaimed a one-party state.
October 14 -- October 19
Germany quits the League of Nations and disarmament talks.
The Nazi Party gets 92 percent of the vote in one-party elections.
The German-Polish Non-Aggression Pact is signed.
“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.
German president Hindenburg dies: Hitler merges the offices of chancellor and president and becomes the Reichsfuehrer, thereby making him the sole and unrivaled leader of Germany.
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.
Military conscription in Germany begins, violating the Treaty of Versailles.
The German army becomes “all-Aryan,” meaning Jews are not allowed to serve.
The Nuremberg Laws are enacted, defining who is a Jew according to racial theory, banning marriage between Jews and non-Jews, and stripping Jews of German citizenship.
The German army enters the Rhineland (region along the Rhine River in western Germany), violating the Treaty of Versailles.
The Spanish Civil War begins.
The Olympic Games begin in Berlin (Germany).
The Four-Year Plan (the economic plan to prepare Germany for war) is unveiled.
The Rome-Berlin Axis Agreement is signed between Italy and Germany based on political interests.
Germany and Japan sign a military pact.
Pope Pius XI issues a statement against racism.
Buchenwald (Germany) concentration camp is established.
The German army is ordered to prepare for war.
Anschluss: Germany annexes Austria.
Recognition of Jewish organizations in Germany is revoked.
Jewish businesses have to register as such.
“Operation June”: Mass arrests of Jews in the Reich and banishment to concentration camps begin.
Anti-Jewish economic policies restrict Jews’ access to many fields of activity.
July 6 -- July 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.
Compulsory middle names (Sarah for women and Israel for men) for Jews in Germany are required in order to identify them as Jews.
The Munich Agreement: England and France accept German annexation of parts of Czechoslovakia.
Passports of German Jews are marked with the letter “J.”
17,000 Polish-born Jews are expelled from Germany to Poland; most are interned in Zbaszyn (Poland).
November 7 -- November 10
The Kristallnacht Pogrom: Almost one hundred Jews are murdered and Jewish synagogues and Jewish businesses are burned and vandalized across Germany and Austria.
Italy adopts antisemitic racial laws.
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.
Jewish children are banned from German schools.
Germans occupy Bohemia and Moravia, thus liquidating the Czechoslovak Republic.
The civil war in Spain ends.
The MS St. Louis, a ship with 937 Jewish refugees, is turned away by Cuba, the United States, and other countries, and returns to Europe.
Germany and the Soviet Union sign the Non-Aggression Pact; the pact includes a secret section that determines the partition of Poland.
Germany invades Poland, beginning World War II.
Great Britain, France, India, Australia, and New Zealand declare war on Germany.
The Soviets invade Poland.
Reinhard Heydrich (head of security police) orders the establishment of Jewish councils (Judenrate) and the concentration of Jews in the larger cities of Poland.
Poland is partitioned between Germany and the Soviet Union.
The Warsaw (Poland) Judenrat is established.
Jewish “resettlement” in the Lublin district of Poland begins; plans are made to establish a Jewish “reservation.”
The first ghetto is established in Piotrkow Trybunalski, Poland.
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.
Jews in Poland are required to wear the Jewish Badge (Star of David).
The Soviets invade Finland.
The Nazis initiate use of gas vans to eliminate patients with mental disabilities.
Jewish property in Generalgouvernement is registered.
The Katyn Massacre: The Soviets execute thousands of Polish officers in the Soviet-occupied part of Poland.
Germany invades Denmark and Norway.
The Lodz (Poland) ghetto is sealed.
Germany invades Belgium and the Netherlands; Neville Chamberlain resigns; Winston Churchill becomes the prime minister of England.
The Allies evacuate forces to England at Dunkirk.
Germany occupies Paris; the first deportation of Polish political prisoners to Auschwitz (Poland) concentration camp begins.
Hitler presents Mussolini with the Madagascar Plan, a plan to deport all Jews to the island near the shores of Eastern Africa.
The Vichy France government is formed.
The Battle of Britain begins.
Germany declares the “total blockade of Britain.”
The German “Blitz” on England reaches a climax with massive air raids on British cities.
The French government sets fierce anti-Jewish legislation.
Jewish businesses in occupied Netherlands are registered.
Jewish property in Belgium is registered.
The Warsaw ghetto is sealed.
The Krakow (Poland) ghetto is sealed.
Germany invades Yugoslavia and Greece.
Germany occupies Salonika, the largest Jewish community in Greece.
The Lublin (Poland) ghetto is sealed.
“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.
“Operation Barbarossa”: The German invasion of the Soviet Union marks the beginning of the “Final Solution.”
The Einsatzgruppen begin mass killings in the Soviet Union.
The Romanian “Iron Guard” kill 1,500 Jews in Iasi, Romania.
Germany occupies Lvov, Poland; 4,000 Jews are killed by July 3.
Einsatzgruppe D begins operating in Bessarabia (Romania); 160,000 Jews are shot by August 31.
The Kishinev (Romania) ghetto is established; 10,000 Jews are murdered.
Hermann Goering orders Heydrich to plan the “Final Solution.”
The murder of the Jews of Vilna (Lithuania) begins at Ponary, south of Vilna.
50,000 Jews are confined in the Bialystok (Poland) ghetto.
Murders in Pinsk (Belorussia); 10,000 are Jews killed in three days.
Jews in Slovakia and the protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia are ordered to wear the Jewish Badge.
The first experimental gassings are conducted at Auschwitz.
The siege of Leningrad (Russia) begins.
150,000 Jews are deported to Transnistria between Romania and the Soviet Union; 90,000 die.
German Jews are ordered to wear the Jewish Badge.
September 29 -- September 30
33,771 Jews are murdered at Babi Yar near Kiev (Ukraine).
The Vitebsk (Belorussia) ghetto is liquidated; Germans murder more than 16,000 Jews.
Deportation of German and Austrian Jews to ghettos in the East begins.
20,000 Jews are transported to Dalnik (Ukraine); Germans and Romanians murder all of them.
Germans murder thousands of Kovno (Lithuania) Jews.
The first transport (of prisoners of war) reaches Majdanek (Poland) extermination camp.
A ghetto-camp is established in Theresienstadt, near Prague (Czechoslovakia).
30,000 Riga (Latvia) Jews are arrested and subsequently shot at Rumbuli.
The Soviets launch a counteroffensive on Moscow.
The Japanese attack Pearl Harbor; the United States enters World War II; four days later, Germany and Italy declare war on the United States.
The German army issues “Night and Fog”: an order prescribing repressive measures against resistance movements in the German-occupied countries of Western Europe.
Gas vans are introduced at Chelmno (Poland) extermination camp.
Romanians murder more than 40,000 Jews at the Bogdanovka (Romania) camp.
33,500 of 57,000 Jews in Vilna have been murdered.
The Jewish underground in Vilna issues a partisan manifesto calling Jews to fight back against the Germans.
The concentration and expulsion of Dutch Jewry begins.
Germans begin deportation of more than 10,000 Jews from Lodz to Chelmno.
The Wannsee Conference takes place.
The Jewish underground is established in Vilna.
The Germans deport more than 30,000 Jews from Lodz to their deaths in Chelmno.
58,000 Slovakian Jews are deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau (Poland).
The first transport of approximately 1,000 French Jews to Auschwitz-Birkenau begins.
The Einsatzgruppen report that there are no Jews left in the Crimea.
The first mass killing in Sobibor (Poland) extermination camp occurs.
Jews in Holland are ordered to wear the Jewish Badge.
The Czech underground assassinates Reinhard Heydrich; in retaliation, the Germans obliterate the Czech village of Lidice.
Jews in Belgium and France are ordered to wear the Jewish Badge.
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.
Himmler orders elimination of all Jews in Generalgouvernement by the end of 1942.
The mass deportation from the Warsaw ghetto to Treblinka (Poland) extermination camp begins.
The Jewish Fighting Organization (Z.O.B.) is founded in Warsaw.
August 8 -- August 13
The US delays information on a plan to annihilate Jews to verify sources. Germans and Croatians begin deporting Croatian Jews to Auschwitz-Birkenau.
Deportations from Lvov to Belzec (Poland) extermination camp begin; 50,000 Jews are gassed.
The Battle of Stalingrad (Russia) begins.
The British begin a counteroffensive at El Alamein, Egypt.
The first deportations from Theresienstadt to Auschwitz-Birkenau begin.
The Allies invade North Africa.
The Soviets counterattack near Stalingrad (Russia).
November 25 -- November 26
A massive round-up of Norwegian Jewry by Germans and Norwegian collaborators begins.
Deportations to Belzec stop.
The Allies condemn German mass murder.
Jews launch an armed resistance to deportations from the Warsaw ghetto.
The Germans surrender at Stalingrad.
The deportation of 10,000 Jews from Bialystok to Treblinka begins.
The first transports from Salonika to Auschwitz-Birkenau begin.
The first transport of Sinti-Roma reaches Auschwitz-Birkenau.
Jews of Thrace (Greece) are deported to Treblinka.
The first deportations from Salonika arrive at Auschwitz-Birkenau.
The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising begins.
Bermuda Conference: A conference convened by the United States and Great Britain ostensibly to find solutions for wartime refugees.
The leaders of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising die.
The Lvov ghetto is liquidated.
Himmler orders liquidation of all ghettos in occupied Soviet territories.
Four crematoria are completed at Auschwitz-Birkenau.
The Allies invade Sicily (Italy).
Mussolini is deposed.
The uprising at Treblinka begins.
The first of five organized groups leave the Vilna ghetto to join the partisans.
The Bialystok ghetto is liquidated.
The Vilna underground uprising fails.
Belgian Jews are arrested for deportation to Auschwitz-Birkenau.
The Vilna ghetto is liquidated.
October 1 -- October 2
Danish Jews are rescued.
The uprising at Sobibor begins.
Jews of Rome are deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau.
The Minsk (Belorussia) ghetto is liquidated.
Dnepropetrovsk (Ukraine) is liberated; 15 of 80,000 Jews remain.
Germans launch “Operation Harvest Festival” (Erntefest), concentrated large scale mass executions to liquidate all remaining Jews in the Lublin district and Lublin ghetto.
Jewish partisans liberate Jews in Borshchev (Ukraine).
The War Refugee Board is established.
The Siege of Leningrad ends.
Hitler orders German troops into Hungary.
President Roosevelt warns Hungary to refrain from anti-Jewish measures.
Two Jewish prisoners deliver “Auschwitz Protocols.”
The Hungarian government registers Jews and confiscates their property.
Allied forces mount a major offensive in central Italy.
Mass deportations of Hungarian Jews to Auschwitz-Birkenau begin.
Americans occupy Rome.
D-Day (Invasion of Normandy)
Germany launches the first V-1 rockets at England.
Minsk is liberated; few of 80,000 Jews survive.
The Hungarian government halts deportations.
The Kovno ghetto is liquidated.
Jewish partisans help liberate Vilna; 2,500 of 57,000 Jews survive.
An attempt to assassinate Hitler fails.
Lvov is liberated; 110,000 Jews are dead.
The Red Cross visits Theresienstadt.
The Soviet Army liberates Majdanek.
The liquidation of the Lodz ghetto begins; 74,000 Jews are deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau.
The Slovak National Uprising begins.
Antwerp (Belgium) is liberated; fewer than 5,000 Jews survive.
Churchill announces formation of Jewish Brigade.
The Polish uprising in Warsaw is crushed.
The Sonderkommando uprising at Auschwitz-Birkenau begins.
Germans stop gassings at Auschwitz-Birkenau.
Deportations from Budapest (Hungary) resume.
The Battle of the Bulge
The Soviets liberate half of Budapest.
The Soviets liberate Warsaw; few Jews remain.
Auschwitz-Birkenau is abandoned; the death march of prisoners begins.
The Soviets liberate the Lodz ghetto.
The Soviets liberate Auschwitz-Birkenau.
40,000 prisoners are marched out of Gross-Rosen (Poland) concentration camp.
February 13 -- February 14
Royal Air Force (RAF) and United States Air Force (USAF) air raids devastate Dresden (Germany).
Americans liberate Buchenwald.
President Roosevelt dies; he is succeeded by Harry Truman.
British forces liberate Bergen-Belsen (Germany) concentration camp.
American and Soviet troops meet at the River Elbe near Torgau, Germany.
Mussolini is shot.
Hitler and his companion, Eva Braun, commit suicide.
The Soviets occupy Berlin.
Mauthausen (Austria) concentration camp is liberated by the US Army.
Germany surrenders to the Allies.
V-E (Victory in Europe) Day
The Potsdam Conference
August 6 -- August 9
The United States drops atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki (Japan).
The Nuremberg Trials begin.