World War II Timeline | John's Notes

World War II Timeline

As I have read various books on the World War II period, I have wondered how various events relate to one another chronologically. I decided to start this timeline to help visualize those events. I consider this for now at least a work in progress as I will be adding entries from time to time.

If you are interested in this page, you may also find these other pages of interest:

The  World War II Resources” page is a collection of more than 510 links to museums, memorials, websites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and other sources with information on the World War II-era in history.

The “About WWII” page is a collection of links to posts that I have made over the years that are relevant to WWII.

Last updated February 18, 2021

 Pacific Theater  Date  European Theater
1918
  January 18 War-weary and starving German civilians take to the streets to demand “peace and bread.” The country is just days away from surrender. [4]
1919
  January 15 The Freikorps, or German volunteer units, quell an uprising by the Marxist Spartacus League in Berlin, Germany, killing ~150 civilians and #executing their leaders Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg [116]
  January 18 The Paris Peace Conference begins to negotiate treaties after World War I
  February The Polish-Soviet War begins. The war would last until 1920. The Treaty of Riga was signed on March 18, 1921, giving Poland control of present-day western Ukraine and West Belarus. Poland would lose this territory after World War II. [116]
  February 14 The Paris Peace Conference begins to negotiate treaties after World War I
  July The then-unknown Corporal Adolf Hitler is given the mission of infiltrating the Nazi party for German Army Intelligence
1920
  January 13

Workers from main Berlin industries left their posts & marched to Königsplatz. By 3.30pm in this highly combustible atmosphere shots were fired. SIPO troops (most of them Freikorps soldiers) protecting Reichstag used MGs to hold back the crowds. some 150k people gathered before Berlin’s parliament building, the Reichstag, to demonstrate against a bill limiting the power of Works Committees set up after WW1. Betriebsräte gave workers bigger influence on their companies’ policies: an important improvement.[141]

  January 21 The Paris Peace Conference ends
1921
  March 21 The Peace of Riga is signed ending the Polish-Soviet War
  May 30 The first Soviet tank unit is created. It numbered 4 tanks and had extensive support structures including a train, as the British-supplied Mark V tanks captured from the White Army are quite slow and unreliable [22]
  July 29 Hitler becomes the leader of the Nazi party
  August 10 The Treaty of Sèvres between the Allies and the Ottman Empire is signed in the exhibition hall of a porcelain factory – as the Greco-Turkish War rages on.
  November 4 The Nazi Party’s paramilitary Sturmabteilung or ‘SA’ is founded. They become known as the “brown-shirts” [4]
1922
The Washington Naval Treaty is signed by the United Kingdom, the United States, Japan, France, and Italy. February 6 They agree to limit the size of their naval forces.
  October The Russian Civil War ends with the communists in power
With LT Virgil Griffin at the controls, a Vought VE-7 became the first aircraft to launch from USS Langley (CV 1), the U.S. Navy’s first aircraft carrier. [121] October 17  
  October 29 Benito Mussolini is appointed the Prime Minister of Italy by the king
  October 30 In Italy, Fascist Benito Mussolini threatens violence if he is not allowed to form a government. King Victor Emmanuel III agrees to his demands [116]
  November 5 The Treaty of Rapallo was formally signed in Berlin. Germany and Russia would renounce all territorial and monetary claims against each other as the result of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk at the end of WW1, and the two nations were to engage in friendly relations. Russia was to provide heavy weapons and facilities for German military training, which was prohibited by the Treaty of Versailles; meanwhile, Germany was to conduct training for the Russian military and to provide Russia with an annual payment.
  December 30 Soviet Russia, Belorussia, Ukraine, and the Transcaucasian Federation, are renamed the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics by Vladimir I. Lenin [116]
1923
  January 11

French and Belgium troops occupy the German Ruhr valley in response to the Weimar Republic missing reparation payments due as part of the Treaty of #Versailles, which ended WWI. The occupation ended on August 25, 1925.  [116]

  January 31

Royal Canadian Naval Volunteer Reserve (RCNVR) created to augment RCNR, with units in Calgary, Charlottetown, Edmonton, Halifax, Hamilton, Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec City, Regina, Saint John, Saskatoon, Toronto, Vancouver & Winnipeg. [61]

  February 16 WWI allies give Memelland, formerly part of Prussia, Germany, to Lithuania where a large Lithuanian population lived. Lithuania took control of Memelland on January 23 when the allies and Germany decided to turn it into a free state. [116]
  October 23 German communists in Hamburg, Germany begins an unsuccessful insurrection during the Weimar Republic. The uprising was encouraged by leaders of the Soviet Union [116]
  November 8 The Beer Hall Putsch takes place, in which Adolf Hitler unsuccessfully leads the Nazis in an attempt to overthrow the German government. Hitler was arrested on 11 Nov 1923. He would be imprisoned for his action. While in prison he will write Mein Kampf [2, 49, 116]
1924
  December 20 Adolf Hitler was released from Landsberg Prison. Following his release, Hitler convinced the Chancellor of Bavaria to remove the ban on the Nazi Party [49]
1925
  January 3 Benito Mussolini dissolves parliament and becomes dictator of Italy [116]
1928
Japanese and Chinese troops clashed in Shandong, China [2] May 3  
  October 1 Joseph Stalin implements the first Five Year Plan in Soviet Russia. The Plan is a series of revolutionary economic reforms that, on the one hand, resulted in industrial growth. Yet the agricultural collectivisation policy causes mass famine. [39]
Michinomiya Hirohito is enthroned as the 124th Japanese monarch. He served until his death on January 7, 1989, becoming the longest serving #monarch in Japanese history. [116] November 10  
1929
  September 24 Lieutenant James H. Doolittle, U.S. Army Air Corps, makes the first completely blind aeroplane takeoff flight and landing solely by reference to instruments in the rear cockpit of his two-seat civil-registered Consolidated NY-2 Husky trainer NX7918. [8]
  October 29 Stock prices collapsed on the New York Stock Exchange amid panic selling that precipitated the Great Depression
  November 17 The MS-1 tank was first used in battle during the East China Railway conflict. The Red Army found many deficiencies with the tank, but its role in the conflict was decisive and a ceasefire was signed just a few days later. [22]
  December 27 Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin orders the liquidation of the kulaks, the affluent peasants/independent farmers, as a class. An estimated 3 million #kulaks were killed during the purge [116]
1930
  July 28 The first welded MS-1 hull was finished at the Izhora factory. Joining armor by welding was preferable to rivets, but this technology was not mastered until the T-26 and BT tanks were already in production [22]

 


The first flight of the B-17 Flying Fortress

1931
  January 26 Production of T-26 light tanks begins in Bolshevik Factory in Leningrad [2]
  January 31 The career of the Russian Renault in the Red Army as a fighting tank is over. Their guns were removed and the tanks were relegated to tanker schools having never seen battle. [22]
  August 20 The Red Army begins a large scale exercise that includes 61 MS-1 tanks. These exercises prove once more that the MS-1 is too slow to meet the requirements for a modern tank [22]
Japan invades Manchuria September 18  
  September 23

LTGEN Xi Qia began talks with Japanese occupation representatives in Mukden, China [2]

  September 26

Keel to USS Ranger (CV 4) laid @ Newport News, VA. She is 1st ship designed & constructed as an aircraftcarrier [107]

Pro-Japanese Zhang Jinghui plotts secession of Heilongjiang from China [2]

September 27  
  October 1 The British Air Ministry issues Specification F.7/30. This will lead to the Gloster Gladiator. [9]
  October 3  
  October 14 First flight of the Hawker Nimrod (HN1). British carrier-based single engine, single seat biplane fighter aircraft [8
Ma Zhanshan launches a failed attack on Japanese troops in northeastern China [2] November 4  
General Ma Zhanshan rejected the Japanese ultimatum [2] November 15  
Japanese Kwantung Army launches an offensive from Mukden toward Jinzhou in China [2] December 21  
Japanese troops reach the Taling River in northeastern China [2] December 31  
1932
Japanese troops capture Jinzhou, Liaoning Province, China [2] January 3  
  January 24 HMCS Skeena and Vancouver, of the Royal Canadian Navy, landed armed parties at Acajutla, El Salvador to protect British subjects threatened in a revolution [31]
Chinese and Japanese troops clash in Shanghai [2] January 28  
In the first major aircraft carrier action in the Far East, Japanese carrier aircraft bomb Shanghai, China causing 1,000 mostly civilian deaths [2] January 29  
Japanese troops capture Harbin, China February 4  
The Japanese carrier Hosho launchs sorties against Chinese positions in Shanghai February 5  
Ma Zhanshan surrenders to the Japanese in Heilongjiang, China [2] February 14  
The Chinese naval commander in Harbin surrenders 5 river gunboats to Japan [2] February 15  
  February 16 First flight of the Martin B-10, first all-metal monoplane bomber. It was the first all-metal monoplane bomber to go into regular use by the United States Army Air Corps and the first mass-produced bomber
League of Nations reviews the Japanese violation of Chinese sovereignty [2] February 19  
Chinese troops launch a failed counterattack in Shanghai March 1  
The League of Nations demand a ceasefire between Japanese and Chinese forces in China [2] March 4  
The Chinese back down at Shanghai per League of Nations request; Japanese attacks continue [2] March 6  
  March 7 First flight of the German Junkers Ju 52/3m, 3 engine transport aircraft
Li Haiching defeats pro-Japanese Xi Qia 35 miles north of capital of puppet Manchukuo state [2] March 29  
  July 8 First flight of the Supermarine Scapa (Nanuk/Solent/Southampton X), British general reconnaissance biplane twin engine flying boat. Developed from the Southampton, it formed the basis of the later Stranraer flying boat. [8]
  August 20 The T-35-1 prototype tank is completed. This 5-turreted colossus is the first step to the Soviet Union’s first mass produced heavy tank: the T-35A (later just T-35) [22]
Japanese troops capture the Shanhai Gate of the Great Wall of China September 18  
China appeals to the League of Nations over Japanese invasion [2] September 21  
Japanese troops attack Qiqihar, Nenjiang Province, China [2] November 17  
1933
  January 30 Adolf Hitler becomes chancellor of Germany after German President Paul von Hindenburg appoints him to the position. [2, 26, 116]
  February 3 A few days after becoming German’s chancellor, Adolf Hitler tells his generals the purpose of the #Wehrmacht was for “Conquering new Lebensraum in the East and ruthlessly Germanizing it.” [116]
Japanese and Manchukuo troops attack Rehe Province in China February 21  
Japanese troops capture Chaoyang, Rehe Province, China February 25  
  February 27 Germany’s Reichstag burns. Hitler blames communist terrorists for the blaze and declares a state of emergency. In the coming days, the Nazis will crack down on all political opposition and silence the press [2]
  September 13 The Nazis made racial science compulsory in all German schools. The Nazis indoctrinated the younger population through education by changing the core curriculum to emphasize sports, history and racial science [49]
  October 14 Nazi Germany announces that it is withdrawing from the League of Nations [116]
  December 30 First flight of The Polikarpov I-16, (TsKB-12) Soviet fighter aircraft of revolutionary design; it was the world’s first cantilever-winged monoplane fighter with retractable landing gear. [8]
1934
The Chinese 620th and 621st Regiments ambush Japanese troops near the Great Wall [2] March 6  
Japanese and Chinese troops clash at Gubeikou Pass of the Great Wall [2] March 10  
The Chinese 25th Division was ordered to fall back from Gubeikou Pass of the Great Wall [2] March 12  
Soviet troops capture Korla, Xinjiang, China [2] March 16  
Japanese troops capture Yiyuankou Pass of the Great Wall [2] March 21  
  March 27 The Enabling Act comes into effect, giving Hitler near-dictatorial powers [2]
Japanese troops capture Lengkou of the Great Wall of China [2] April 11  
The Japanese carrier Ryujo was commissioned into service [2] May 9/td>  
  July 26/td> The SS becomes an independent organization of the party with Heinrich Himmler at its helm [2]
  August 19 The German public voted 90 percent in favor of Chancellor Adolf Hitler becoming Führer und Reichskanzler (“leader and chancellor”), a new title created after the death of President Paul von Hindenburg earlier in the month
  October 7 First flight of the Tupolev ANT-40.1, a Soviet high speed twin-engine three-seat monoplane bomber [8]
  November 4 First flight of the Junkers Ju 86. German twin engine monoplane bomber and civilian airliner. The first prototype Ju 86, the Ju 86abi in bomber configuration, was fitted with Siemens SAM 22 radial engines. [8]
  November 16 The Air Ministry issues Specification F.5/34 requiring an eight gun aircraft with a closed cockpit and retractable landing gear. This will lead to the Supermarine Spitfire. [9]
  December 18 First flight of the Northrop XFT. American prototype fighter aircraft, single engine low-wing monoplane powered by a Wright Whirlwind radial [8]
Japan renounces the Naval Treaties of 1922 and 1930 [2] December 29  
1935
  January 3 Specification F.37/34 is issued by the Air Ministry for a Spitfire prototype [9]
  February 18 2 German noble women, Benita von Falkenhayn & Renate von Natzmer, are sentenced for high treason, beheaded in Berlin Ploetzensee prison. They spied for Polish secret service: both had an affair with a POL spy, Baron Jerzy Sosnowski (sought info on GER rearmament & airplanes) [141]
  February 24 First flight of the twin engine German Heinkel He 111
  April 12 First flight of the Bristol Blenheim (type 142), a British light bomber
  May 6 First flight of the Curtiss P-36 Hawk, also known as the Curtiss Hawk Model 75, American fighter aircraft. The P-36 was flown by the US Army Air Corp and allies in both theaters
Zhang Jinghui is named Prime Minister of Manchukuo puppet state [2] May 21  
  September 10 The Iranian government expands their order with ČKD to 50 TNH tanks and 50 AH-IV tankettes. This might not seem like much, but this was a significant purchase that made up for losing the LT vz.35 contract to Škoda. [22]
  September 17 The first flight of the German Junkers 87, better known as the Stuka, one of the most feared aircraft of WW2. Although unsuccessful during the Battle of Britain, it remained in German service until the end of WW2 [60]
  October 3 Italian forces attack Abyssinia in the Second Italo-Ethiopian War. The last battle of the war, which Italy won, occurred on February 19, 1937. The Ethiopian Empire then became part of the Italian colony of Italian East Africa [116]
  November 6 flying from Brooklands the Hurricane prototype makes its first flight. It was powered by a Rolls-Royce ‘C’ engine and George Bulman, chief test pilot at Hawker, was at the controls. [9]
Chiang Kaishek is made the Premier of Republic of China [2] December 9  
  December 12 Lebensborn organization is founded within the SS in Germany. Its goal is to stop falling birth rates & promote Nazi eugenics. It provided welfare & encouraged births by unmarried women. These kids were adopted to SS members and others. [116]
  December 17 The DC-3 Dakota is first flown. Over 16,000 were built and 300+ still fly 85 years later. [134]
1936
  March 5 First flight of the Supermarine Spitfire. The Supermarine Spitfire is a British single-seat fighter aircraft used by the Royal Air Force and other Allied countries before, during, and after World War II
Kenkichi Ueda was made ambassador to Manchukuo puppet state [2] March 28  
  May 2 Emperor Haile Selassie of Abyssinia goes into exile [2]
  May 6 First flight of the Latécoère 298, French seaplane, single-engine, mid-wing cantilever monoplane, designed as a torpedo bomber, but also served as a dive bomber against land and naval targets, and as a maritime reconnaissance aircraft
Chiang Kaishek proclaims that Japan is waging a undeclared war in China [2] May 9  
The United States Navy orders 83 Curtiss SBC-3 Helldivers [9] August 19  
  October 1 During Spanish Civil War, General Francisco Franco is publicly proclaimed as Generalísimo of the National army and Head of State. He would remain dictator of Spain until his death on November 20, 1975 [116]
  October 3 First flight of the Italian Fiat BR.20 Cicogna (Stork) low-wing twin-engine medium bomber
Japanese-backed Mongolian troops march into Suiyuan, China [2] October 20  
  October 30 The Pz.Kpfw.I went into battle for the first time. Early reports indicated that its armour was insufficient even against rifle bullets, let alone Soviet 45 mm tank guns [22]
  November 1 Nazi Germany and Italy, reflecting their common interest in destabilizing the European order, announce a Rome-Berlin Axis one week after signing a treaty of friendship. [49]
  November 25 Signing of the Anti-Comintern Pact in Berlin [2]
Mengjiang-sponsored irregulars attack Bailingmiao, China [2] December 3  
  December 13 First flight of the PZL.37 Łoś. Polish twin-engine medium bomber. Extensively used in the defense of Poland during the rapid invasion of Poland by Germany in September 1939. [2]
First flight of the Mitsubishi Ki-21 ‘Sally’. Japanese twin engine bomber [8] December 18  
1937
  January 30 German Chancellor Adolf Hitler withdraws Germany’s signature from the Treaty of Versailles. The treaty that basically brought an end to World War I. [116]
  February 26 First flight of the Fiat G.50 Freccia (“Arrow”), MM334, WWII Italian fighter aircraft. Italy’s first single-seat, all-metal monoplane with an enclosed cockpit and retractable landing gear to go into production
The first flight of the Japanese Mitsubishi Ki-30 “Ann” light bomber February 27  
  March 1 The first British Bristol Blenheims enter service with the RAF 114 Squadron in Wyton
  April 11 First flight of the Junkers Ju 89 German four-engine heavy bomber prototype
1,500 Uyghur troops capture Old City district of Kashgar, China [2] May 30  
The Marco Polo Bridge Incident renewed hostilities between Japan and China July 7-9  
Some Japanese units are pulled from China as some politicians attempted to de-escalate [2] July 11  
Carrier Hosho launched aircraft in support of invasion of China [2] July 16  
The Japanese 20th Division clashes with Chinese troops at the city of Langfang [2] July 25  
A Japanese brigade attacks the Guanghua Gate of the Beiping, China city wall [2] July 26  
Japanese troops besiege the city of Tongzhou (Tungchow), China [2] July 27  
The Japanese 20th Division attacks Beiping, China [2] July 28  
Japanese troops attack Tianjin, China [2] July 29  
Defending troops in Tianjin, China are ordered to withdraw from the city [2] July 30  
Hideki Tojo leads Japanese troops at Battle of Chahar in China [2] August 1  
Chinese 29th Brigade under General Liu Ruzhen withdraws from Beiping, China [2] August 4  
Emperor Showa allows Chinese POWs to be deprived of treatment demanded by international law [2] August 5  
He Yingqin is made the commanding officer of the 4th War Area [2] August 6  
The Chinese Navy begins planning for the blockade of the mouth of the Yangtze River [2] August 7  
Japan declares Beiping and Tianjin secure [2] August 8  
Lt Oyama attempted to enter Hongqiao Airport without authorization and was killed by Chinese police [2] August 9  
Japanese warships bombard Shanghai, China [2] August 13  
Chinese fighters shoot down many Japanese bombers; Air Force Day declared [2] August 14  
The Chinese capital of Nanjing is subjected to bombing for the first time [2] August 15  
Japanese aircraft attack Chinese positions at Jiangyin [2] August 16  
Japanese light tanks halt a Chinese counter attack at Shanghai [2] August 17  
Japanese aircraft attack the cruiser Pinghai repeatedly near Shanghai [2] August 22  
Japanese aircraft sink cruiser Ninghai near Shanghai [2] August 23  
Japanese aircraft damage the Chinese gunboat Chuyou at Jiangyin, Jiangsu Province, China [2] August 29  
Japanese troops capture Datong, Shanxi, China and its large supply of coal [2] September 13  
The Yubari engages with the Chinese cruiser Zhaohe off Guangdong, China [2] September 14  
Japanese troops capture Luodian near Shanghai after fierce 4-day battle [2] September 15  
Japanese bombing kills 600 civilians in Nanjing [2] September 25  
Chinese Cruiser Zhaohe is sunk by Japanese aircraft off Guangdong, China [2] September 28  
Carrier aircraft from Ryujo attack Guangzhou, Guangdong, China [2] September 21  
Japanese aircraft bombard the Chinese coastal batteries overlooking Pearl River Delta [2] September 30  
The Japanese Chahar Expeditionary Force attacks Gouxian, Shanxi, China [2] October 2  
Jiang Dingwen is named the commanding officer of the Chinese 4th Army [2] October 4  
Japanese troops capture Gouxian, Shanxi, China [2] October 12 The first production Hawker Hurricane Mk I flies [9]
Chinese troops counterattack the Japanese at Xinkou, Shanxi, China [2] October 16  
The Guanxi Army arrives in Shanghai, China to reinforce the Chinese forces [2] October 17  
The Chinese 120th Div destroys 24 Japanese aircraft at Yangmingbao airfield [2] October 19  
Yingrui is sunk by Japanese carrier aircraft from Kaga off Jiangyin, China [2]/td>

 

October 23  
Chinese 524th Regiment withdraws into Sihang Warehouse in Shanghai [2] October 26  
The Chinese recently escaped from the Sihang Warehouse in Shanghai into the international zone are interned [2] November 1  
The keel of Battleship No. 1 is laid down at the Kure Naval Arsenal. [2] November 4  
The Japanese 10th Army lands at Jinshanwei in the south of Shanghai [2] November 5 Hitler conducts the Hossbach Conference, a secret conference held in the Reich Chancellery, where Hitler announces his intention to conduct war in Europe. Colonel Friedrich Hossbach took the minutes at the conference, hence the name. [116]
  November 6 Italy joined the Anti-Comintern Pact [2]
Chinese troops begin to retreat from Shanghai, China [2] November 8 Gloster Gauntlets of No. 32 Squadron achieve the first radar-controlled airborne interception when a civil airliner is intercepted over the Thames. [9]
Japanese troops begin the occupation of Shanghai, China [2] November 9  
Chuichi Nagumo was named the commandant of the mine warfare school [2] November 15  
Chiang Kaishek orders govt agencies to evacuate Nanjing, China [2] November 16  
The Wufu defensive line between Shanghai and Nanjing is overrun by Japanese troops [2] November 19  
Chinese government agencies begin to evacuate Nanjing for Hankou. [2] November 20  
The Japanese Central China Area Army requests Tokyo for permission to assault Nanjing [2] November 22  
German businessman Rabe in Nanjing voices concerns of Japanese atrocities to Hitler [2] November 25  
Xicheng defensive line between Shanghai and Nanjing is overrun by Japanese troops [2] November 26  
General Tang Shengzhi advised foreign residents in Nanjing to depart [2] November 27  
Japanese troops reach outskirts of Nanjing and demand surrender of the city December 2 Delegates from Russia and Germany meet at Brest-Litovsk to sign an armistice and open negotiations for a formal peace treaty. Berlin is hoping to end its two-front war so it can concentrate its forces for a decisive victory in the West. [4]
Japanese 9th and 16th Divs attacked Chinese 66th and 83rd Corps east of Nanjing [2] December 3  
Japanese troops reach the outskirts of Nanjing and demanded surrender [2] December 9  
Japanese troops began the assault on Nanjing, China [2] December 10 First flight of the Lockheed Hudson B-14L (Mk.1) N7205. American-built light twin engine bomber & coastal reconnaissance aircraft built initially for the RAF. [8]
Japanese atrocities at Nanjing begin with the execution of 1500 Chinese POWs [2]

 


During the Sino-Japanese War at the Battle of Nanking, Japan sinks the neutral U.S. ship, the USS Panay. It was escorting evacuees and three oil tankers when it was sunk. Japan agreed to pay $2 million in reparations as a result [116]
December 12  
Japanese forces take Nanking, China during the Sino-Japanese War. Some estimate that as many as 300,000 soldiers and citizens were massacred by the Japanese in what is known as the Rape of Nanking [2, 116] December 13  
Japanese 6th Div troops massacre 2000 Chinese outside of Hanzhong Gate of Nanjing [2] December 15  
The 20th Company of Japanese 16th Div kills 7000 Chinese east of Zijin Mtn near Nanjing [2] December 16  
Japanese 13th Div began to burn remains of their thousands of victims in Nanjing [2] December 19  
Japanese Domei News Agency reports Nanjing returning to normalcy [2] December 20  
  December 23 The first production version of the Vickers Wellington Mk I flies, this was powered by two Bristol Pegasus X engines [9]
Japanese occupation forces begin registering men in Nanjing [2] December 28  
Japanese occupation forces begin registering men in Nanjing [2] December 29  
Japanese occupation forces in Nanjing, China began registering women [2] December 31  
1938
  January 14

In Berlin, AdolfHitler received Polish Minister of Foreign Affairs JózefBeck. He assured him that the Third Reich did not intend to infringe the rights of Poland in Gdańsk while making clear that Germany is planning Anschluss – the annexation of Austria. [55]

Koki Hirota messaged other diplomats about Japanese brutality in Nanjing [2] January 17  
George Fitch departed Nanjing with film containing scenes of Japanese atrocities [2] January 19  
The cruiser Kuma supports the Japanese landing at Yantai, China [2] February 2  
Japanese troops take 20 Chinese women from Ginling College for comfort houses [2] February 4 The Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (OKW) is formed under Wilhelm Keitel [2]
The International Committee in Nanjing makes 450 complaints of rape and murder to Japanese embassy [2] February 5  
The Japanese begin a 6-month-long aerial bombardment campaign against Chongqing [2] February 18  
The Chinese Air Force attacked Matsuyama Airfield on Taiwan [2] February 23  
Dr. Robert Wilson estimates that 100k Chinese have been killed in Nanjing [2] March 7  
  March 11 Hitler formally issued a directive for the invasion of Austria [2]
  March 12 Germany annexed Austria; Hitler visits Linz on the same day [2]
The Japanese 10th Division advances into Jiangsu Province, China [2] March 14  
Chinese troops form a defensive line 75 miles north of Xuzhou [2] March 15  
The Japanese attack on Tengxian, Jiangsu Province, China is repulsed [2] March 16  
The Chinese 31st Division arrives at Jiangsu Province in response to a Japanese attack [2] March 21  
Japanese troops begin to march toward Taierzhuang, Jiangsu Province, China [2] March 22  
Chinese stumble upon Japanese rear artillery position at Taierzhuang, China [2] March 25  
House-to-house fighting begins in Taierzhuang, Jiangsu, China [2] March 27  
Chinese attack on Japanese troops at Taierzhuang, China ends in failure [2] March 29  
Troops from the Chinese First War Area arrive at Xuzhou [2] April 5  
  April 10 Reichstag elections in Germany require all voters to approve union with Austria [2]
Japanese Chief of Army General Staff Prince Kotohito authorizes use of poison gas in Inner Mongolia [2] April 11  
  April 19 The first of four pre-production Messerschmitt Bf 110B-01 fighters took flight [2]
  April 24 Nazi agitators in Sudetenland demanded autonomy with the Carlsbad Decrees [2]
Japanese captured Xuzhou, China [2] April 30  
  May 3 Construction begins on the Flossenburg Concentration Camp [2]
2,000 SNLF naval infantry troops land near Xiamen, China [2] May 10  
Japanese troops capture the Hulishan and Baishi forts at Xiamen, China [2] May 11  
Chinese troops abandon Xiamen, China for nearby Songyu [2] May 12  
  May 16 German generals tell Hitler 12 divisions were ready to move into Czechoslovakia on command [2]
Japanese bombers attack Guangzhou, killing 750 and wounding 1,350 [2] May 28 Hitler orders the military to prepare for an invasion of Czechoslovakia [2]
Japanese troops begin to march for Wuhan [2] June 11  
The Japanese 11th Army captures the airfield outside of Anqing, Anhui, China [2] June 12  
Japanese troops reach Madang, Jiangxi Province, China [2] June 16  
Arthur Chin and John Wong, in Gladiators, shoot down G3M bombers over Guangdong [2] June 24  
Japanese Special Naval Landing Force troops landed behind Chinese lines at Madang [2] June 26  
Japanese troops capture Hukou, Jiangxi Province, China [2] July 4  
The Japanese minelayer Kamome strikes a mine in the Yangtze River [2] July 6  
The Japanese Navy orders the sunken Chinese cruiser Pinghai to be raised [2] July 11  
Japanese diplomats demand that Soviet troops withdraw from Lake Khasan area [2] July 14  
30 I-15 fighters are delivered to the Chinese Air Force at Lanzhou [2] July 18  
Japanese troops capture Jiujiang, Jiangxi, China [2] July 26  
The Japanese 106th Division marches south from Jiujiang, Jiangxi Province, China [2] July 27  
Xue Yue takes command of the Chinese 1st Army [2] August 1  
  August 2 Soviet reinforcements arrive in the Lake Khasan region [2]
Japanese and Chinese troops clash south of Jiujiang, Jiangxi, China [2] August 4  
Japanese troops capture Huangdanao in Jiangxi Province, China [2] August 5  
Japanese and Chinese troops clash at Jinjiashan, Jiangxi, China [2] August 6  
Japanese troops capture Dengjiahe in Jiangxi Province, China [2] August 7  
The Chinese 90th Division repulses Japanese assaults at Shizishan, Jiangxi, China [2] August 8  
Soviet troops drive the Japanese out of the Lake Khasan region, northeastern China [2] August 9  
Hitler Youth members arrive at Yokohama, Japan [77] August 16  
  August 17 All Jews who have ‘non-Jewish’ first names are forced to adopt the middle name ‘Sara’ or ‘Israel’. These antisemitic measures are just a small part of the Nazi campaign to isolate and exclude the Jewish population. [49]
The Japanese 106th Div and Japanese 101st Div launch an offensive in Jiangxi, China [2] August 20  
  August 24 Two tanks and seven drivers are secretly sent from Czechoslovakia to the USSR to demonstrate the LT vz. 35 tank to the Red Army. The tank proves superior to the T-26, but not good enough to purchase a license. [22]
Japanese troops capture Tianjia, Anhui, China [2] August 29  
Elements of the Japanese 2nd Army Group capture Liuan, Hubei, China [2] September 6 opening of a Nazi party rally, Nürnberg, Germany [77]
  September 15 Chamberlain and Hitler meet at Berchtesgaden to discuss the Czechoslovakia issue [2]
Japanese troops capture the city of Shang, Hubei Province, China [2] September 16  
  September 19 The UK and France recommend that Czechoslovakia cede Sudetenland to Germany [2]
  September 20 DuPont receives a patent for nylon, the first wholly synthetic fabric, discovered by organic chemist Wallace Carothers in 1935. [29]

 


No. 49 Squadron based at RAF Scampton receives the first Handley Page Hampdens to enter RAF service. It replaces the Hawker Hinds they were using [9]
Japanese bombing kills 600 civilians in Nanjing [2] September 25  
  September 27 British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain calls the Czech crisis in a broadcast on BBC Radio as “a quarrel in a far-away country between people of whom we know nothing” thus indicating he still favored acceding to Hitler’s demands in the Sudetenland
  September 29 German, Italian, French, British leaders meet at Munich to decide on Czechoslovakia [2]
  September 30

The #Munich Agreement giving the Sudetenland in Czechoslovakia to Germany is signed by Germany, Italy, Britain and France [116]


UK PM Chamberlain declares ‘peace for our time’ after Sudetenland appeasement [2]
  October 1

Hitler annexes Czechoslovakia’s Sudetenland. “It is the last territorial claim which I have to make in Europe,” the Nazi leader assures the world [4, 116]


Germans begin arresting those opposing the Nazis in Sudetenland [2]
  October 4 First flight of the Dornier Do 217 V-1, German WWII twin engine bomber prototype, more powerful version of the Dornier Do 17 [8]
  October 5 A law is passed that decreed all Jews have to have the letter ‘J’ stamped on their passport. These measures were just a small part of the Nazi campaign to completely isolate and exclude the Jewish population [49]/td>
Japanese troops resume the offensive in the Dabie Mountains region of Hubei, China [2] October 6  
Chinese troops envelope elements of the Japanese 101st and 106th Divisions in Jiangxi, China [2] October 7  
The Japanese 106th Div is largely wiped out by Chinese troops at Battle of Wanjialing [2] October 10 The Czech Sudetenland is ceded to Hitler after the Munich Agreement, in a move now regarded as one of the worst cases of appeasement. There was to be no peace in their time. It was signed by Germany, France, Great Britain and Italy on September 30. [39,116]
Japanese troops land at Daya Bay near Guangzhou, China [2] October 12  
Chinese troops withdrew from the Wanjialing area in Jiangxi, China [2] October 13  
  October 14 First flight of the Curtiss P-40 Warhawk. American single-engine, single-seat, all-metal fighter and ground attack aircraft, modification of the previous Curtiss P-36 Hawk [8]
Japanese troops capture the city of Guangzhou in Southern China [2] October 21  
Japanese troops reach the southern borders of Wuhan, Hubei, China [2] October 22  
Japanese troops capture Humen, Guangdong Province, China [2] October 23  
Japanese troops capture Huangpo, Anhui, China [2] October 24 von Ribbentrop meets with Józef Lipski, a Polish Ambassador to Germany. Ribbentrop demands the Polish permission for the German annexation of the Free City of Gdańsk. Lipski fefuses. The Danzig crisis was one of the reasons of the German aggression on Poland in 1939. [55]
Japanese troops capture Sanshui, Guangdong, China [2] October 25  
Japanese forces finally capture Wuchang and Hankou, China. The Battle of Wuhan had begun with air raids in February, though the ground offensive did not begin until June. October 26  
  October 28 Germany expells 15,000 to 17,000 Jews of Polish origin across Polish border [2]
  October 31 Poland rejects German invite to join the Anti-Comintern Pact [2]
  November 2 Arbitration of Vienna gives Hungary southeastern Slovakia and Ruthenia [2]
  November 9 Jewish shops and synagogues were smashed throughout Germany in Kristallnacht or the Night of the Broken Glass, begins. Nazis in #Germany burned and vandalized synagogues, Jewish homes, schools and businesses, killing ~100 Jews. ~30,000 Jewish men were arrested and sent to concentration camps. [2, 116]
  November 21 Prompted by Kristallnacht, a refugee crisis debate takes place in the House of Commons. This led to the creation of the Kindertransport, which helped 10,000 child refugees escape to the UK. [131]
Japanese carrier Kaga launches strikes against Chinese positions near Guangzhou [2]

 


Chinese troops capture Bailingmiao, Suiyuan, China [2]

November 24 Adolf Hitler orders generals to plan an invasion of Danzig, but avoid Poland [2]
  December 2 First flight of the Brewster F2A Buffalo, US Navy’s first monoplane fighter aircraft and one of the first US WWII monoplanes with an arrester hook and other modifications for aircraft carriers.a [8]
Chinese troops launch an attack on Henglingguan Pass in northern China [2] December 10  
  December 12 First flight of the Fairey Albacore, British single-engine carrier-borne biplane torpedo bomber. The Albacore was a three-seat biplane, with fixed taildragger landing gear, and three crew consisting of pilot, navigator, and radio operator/rear gunner [8]
Japanese bombers make the first daylight attack on Chongqing, China [2] December 26  
1939
Japanese bombers attack Chongqing, China during the day [2] January 7  
Japanese bombers attack Chongqing, China during the day [2] January 10  
  January 24 Hermann Göring creates the Central Office for Jewish Emigration. Reinhard Heydrich is appointed Head of the Office, charged with the job of forcing Jewish people to leave Nazi Germany. [126]
First flight of the Lockheed P-38 Lightning, it became operational on May 29, 1942 January 27 The P-38 was the primary long-range fighter of United States Army Air Forces until the appearance of large numbers of P-51D Mustangs
  January 30 Hitler delivers a speech at the Reichstag where he tells the German public and the world that should another war occur, it will mean the annihilation of the Jewish race in Europe. 9 months later the first ghetto is established in Piotrków Trybunalski in occupied Poland. [55, 118]
Japanese Special Naval Landing Forces land at Haikou, Hainan [2] February 10  
Japanese troops land at Sanya on the southern coast of Hainan island [2] February 11  
  February 14 The Bismarck is launched – the biggest battleship ever made by Germany, only matched by her sister ship, the Tirpitz [146]
40 Chinese fighters shoot down 9 Japanese bombers near Lanzhou [2] February 20  
  March 11 Hitler issues a ultimatum for Czechoslovakia to hand over Bohemia and Moravia [2]
Chinese troops begin advancing toward Nanchang, China [2] March 12 Germans demand that Tiso declare Slovakian independence to weaken Czechoslovakia [2]
  March 13 Germany threatens, with force, the Slovakians to declare independence [2]
  March 14 Slovakia and Ruthenia declare independence from Czechoslovakia [2]
Chinese troops report Japanese usage of chemical weapons at Jiangxi Province [2] March 20  
The Japanese 6th Division crosses the Xuishui River and march towards Wuning, China [2] March 21  
Japanese troops defeat the Chinese 102nd Division west of Nanchang, China [2] March 25  
Japanese troops capture Wucheng, Jiangxi Province, China [2] March 26  
The Japanese 101st Division captures Nanchang, Jiangxi Province, China [2] March 27  
The Japanese 101st Division secures Nanchang in Jiangxi Province, China [2] March 28  
The Japanese 6th Division captures Wuning, Jiangxi Province, China [2] March 29  
  March 31 Chamberlain pledges that Britain will use force to protect Polish borders [2]
First flight of Mitsubishi A6M1 Zero (Zeke), long range fighter aircraft operated by the Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service. The prototype A6M Zero fighter took its maiden flight at Kagamigahara airfield [2] April 1  
  April 6  
  April 14 Roosevelt writes to Hitler and Mussolini in an attempt to maintain peace [2]
  April 19 Italian ambassador in Berlin reports the likeliness of war [2]
The Chinese 32th Army crosses the Fu River near Nanchang, Jiangxi Province, China [2] April 23  
The Chinese counter offensive toward Nanchang, reaches the outskirts of the city [2] April 25  
The Troops of the Chinese 3rd and 9th War Areas breach into southern Nanchang, China [2] April 26 The USAAF places an order for 524 P-40 fighters [2]
USAAF placed an order April 26 for 524 P-40 fighters
Chinese troops launch a second counterattack on Nanchang [2] May 2  
Chinese 4th Air Group shoots down 7 Japanese bombers over Chongqing [2] May 3  
Chinese troops attack Japanese positions at Nanchang, Jiangxi Province, China May 4  
Chinese 26th Division breakes through to the Xinlong airfield at Nanchang [2] May 5  
Zhu Jiaxun, in I-15bis fighter, attacks Japanese airfield in Guangdong [2] May 6 Ribbentrop told Ciano that Hitler did not yet have desire for war over Danzig [2]
Chinese call off the offensive toward Nanchang, Jiangxi Province, China [2] May 9  
Mongolian and Manchukuoan cavalry units enter into a dispute [2] May 11  
Japanese 23rd Division drives off Mongolian troops in Mongolia Area of China [2] May 14  
Chinese counterattack in Hubei Province began to wear down the Japanese [2] May 15  
  May 16 Raeder presents Hitler naval plans against Poland, France, and Britain [2]
  May 17 The first production version of the Handley Page Hereford flies [9]
  May 18  
Chinese troops capture Zaoyang, Hubei Province, China [2] May 19  
  June 1 The Fw-190 fighter makes its maiden flight at Bremen, Germany [2]
4,400 civilians die of asphyxiation in Chongqing air raid shelter during Japanese bombing [2] June 5  
The Japanese blockade the British concession in Tianjin, China [2] June 14  
  June 19 The German Army reported that thus far 168 officers had been infiltrated into Danzig [2]
  June 26 The German Gestapo begins to put undesired Czechs in concentration camps [2]
The Japanese Army 2nd Air Brigade attacks the Soviet airfield at Tamsagbulag, Mongoli [2] June 27  
The Japanese Carrier Hiryu is commissioned into service [2] July 5  
  July 6 The last remaining Jewish enterprises in Germany are closed [2]
  July 7 First flight of the Latécoère 299, French 3 seat reconnaissance-torpedo bomber prototype derived from the Late 298 [8]
Soviet forces counterattack Japanese forces in the Mongolia Area of Chin [2] July 9  
Japanese bombers attack Chongqing, China [2] July 11  
  July 14 Royal Romanian Air Force began operating He 112 fighters [2]
  July 25 The maiden flight of the Avro Manchester prototype took place [9]
  July 26 Adolf Eichmann is charged with deporting Czech Jews [2]
Crown Prince Yi Un is made the commanding officer of the Japanese 2nd Brigade [2] August 1  
Prince Morihiro is transferred from China back to Japan [2] August 2  
  August 4 Polish customs officials on the Danzig border begin carrying arms [2]
Japanese troops attack Ruichang, Jiangxi, China [2] August 10  
  August 17 The German military is ordered to supply the SS with 150 Polish Army uniforms [2]
  August 19 Joseph Stalin announces to the Politburo his intention to befriend Germany [2]

 


The Allied raid on Dieppe, France ended in major failure [2]

  August 23 Berlin and Moscow surprise the world by announcing a treaty of non-aggression. A secret protocol hidden within the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact clears the way for a joint German and Soviet invasion of Poland. [2,4,49]
  August 25 The UK and Poland renewed mutual defense agreement to counter Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact [2]
Japanese troops are defeated at the Battle of Khalkhin Gol [2] August 27  
  August 29 The British Admiralty orders the mobilisation of the Fleet for war [90]

 


A Polish destroyer squadron departs for Britain as an invasion seems imminent [2]

  August 31 Hitler gives the formal order for the invasion of Poland [2]

 


Operation Himmler, a series of false flag attacks near the Polish borders, are put into motion. One of them was the faked “Polish attack” on the radio station in Gliwice. [55]

  September 1 Germany invades Poland [2,4]

 


The Polish Navy launches Operation Worek – the defence of Poland’s Baltic coast with its five submarines. The plan is to defend the coast from naval bombardment and prevent German troops from landing [93]


The 1st and 2 divisions are authorized as the Canadian Active Service Force of the Canadian Army. The Royal Canadian Navy, Royal Canadian Navy Reserve, and Royal Canadian Navy Volunteer Reserve are placed on active service. [31]

  September 3 The UK and France declare war on Germany. The ‘Phoney War‘ begins.

 


Within hours U30 torpedoes & sinks passenger liner SS ATHENA, killing 118. Fifty-four Canadians are amongst the dead including, crew member Hannah Baird & she is the 1st Canadian merchant sailor killed in WWII. [2, 61]

 


Neville Chamberlain addresses the nation in a public broadcast, saying that Adolf Hitler had ignored Britain’s ultimatum to withdraw German troops from Poland, and so consequently a state of war existed between Britain and Germany. [18]
  September 4

The Polish submarine, Orzel, leaves its patrol area in the Gulf of Gdańsk under the instructions of Commander Henryk Kłoczkowski. It faces attack from the air and braves minefields to reach the deeper waters of the Baltic [93]


British air force bombs German warships at Kiel [11]

  September 5  
  September 6

German troops capture the Upper Silesian industrial area in Poland [2]


The first British troops arrive in France [11]

  September 7

The British Ministry of Supply appeals to fishermen, their wives and other volunteers to make camouflage nets for the war effort. [21]

  September 8  
  September 9 The first troops of the British Expeditionary Force sails in convoy to France [1]

 


The Polish Army makes its sole major offensive of the war, forcing the Germans to withdraw from Warsaw in the battle of Bzura. This was the largest battle in the invasion of Poland [1, 2]


Around 300 soldiers of the Polish 74th Infantry Regiment are murdered in cold blood by their German captors, near Ciepielów. The man who ordered the massacre, Colonel Walter Wessel, was never brought to justice [105]
  September 10 Canada declares war on Nazi Germany. More than 1 million of the country’s 11 million citizens will serve in the Second World War; 44,000 will be killed. 1st time Canadian Parliament declares war independently from Britain. Naval Service HQ in Ottawa signals all RCN commands, “Grapnel Germany repetition Grapnel Germany,” authorizing offensive operations against Germany. [4, 31, 51, 61]

 


The German terror in Bydgoszcz reaches its bloody apogee with the “pacification” of the suburb of Szwederowo. By the end of the day, some 120 Poles had been executed and a further 900 are taken prisoner. [105]
  September 11 Polish submarines are ordered to break through to Britain or to be interned in Sweden; many will fight for the Allies [1]

 


“Lord Haw Haw” (US-born British subject William Joyce) begins broadcasting anti-British propaganda to Britain on “Germany Calling” radio show on Radio Hamburg [1]

  September 12 The Anglo-French Supreme War Council agrees to postpone military operations [1]
  September 13 The 60,000 survivors in the Radom Pocket in Poland surrenders. [2]

 


British civilians are allowed to carry torches (flashlights) in blackout if screened with tissue paper [1]

  September 14 The Germans take Gdynia, the only remaining Polish port [1]

 


Off the Hebrides, the German submarine U-39 attacks carrier HMS Ark Royal but misses and is sunk by British destroyers Faulknor, Foxhound, and Firedrake, making it the first U-boat sunk in WWII [1]

The USSR and Japan sign a ceasefire in Moscow, officially ending Battle of Khalkhin Gol [2] September 15  
  September 16 Polish troops destroy 22 tanks of Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler regiment [2]

 


In Poland, the Germans take Brest-Litovsk and surround Warsaw [1]


The first German U-boat attack on an Allied North Atlantic convoy; U-31 sinks British freighter Aviemore in convoy OB-4 off Land’s End [1]


Convoy HX-1, the first ‘fast’ convoy out of Halifax sails for Great Britain. All ships arrive safely in Liverpool two weeks later [11, 31]
Japanese 101st and 106th Divisions march for Changsha, China [2] September 17 The Soviet Union invades war-torn Poland. Soviet troops (allied with Germany) surround Polish troops. Moscow’s plan is all part of a secret deal worked out between Hitler and Stalin in the infamous Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact. 150 Polish military and civilian planes fly to Romania; the pilots will make their way to Britain to fight again. [1,2, 4, 11, 55, 105]
  September 18 German and Soviet troops link at Brest-Litovsk, Poland. A Soviet-German joint victory parade is held [1, 2]>

 


Roman Orlik stages his famous ambush, knocking out three German tanks with his TKS tankette. Even German medium tanks are relatively lightly armoured and vulnerable to his 20 mm cannon. [22]

 


The British aircraft carrier Courageous is torpedoed [11]

 


Polish cryptographers flee to Paris with vital information on the German Enigma codes [1]

The Japanese use poison gas against Chinese troops along Sinchiang River in drive to Changsha, China [1,2] September 19  
  September 20 Germany announces that Jews must surrender their radios [1]

 


The first aerial engagement of the war between the RAF and the Luftwaffe takes place over France [1]


German troops withdrew west to the Soviet-German demarcation line [2]


A Fairey Battle of No. 88 Squadron scores the first RAF aerial victory of the Second World War, shooting down a Messerschmitt Bf 109 [9]

  September 21 German SS Gen. Reinhard Heydrich produces a plan to remove Polish Jews, intelligentsia, clergy, and nobility to ghettos [1]

 


The Romanian Prime Minister Armand Călinescu is assassinated by the Fascist Iron Guard for supporting Poland [1]


The Polish Southern Army surrenders at Tomaszov and Zamosz, Poland [2]

  September 22 Britain begins rationing of petrol (20 gallons/month for automobiles) [1]

 


London officials report car accidents have tripled since the blackout started [1]

Japanese Navy Shanghai Special Naval Landing Force lands east of Changsha, China [2]

September 23 The Polish cavalry retakes Krasnobrod, one of the last battles in military history between opposing cavalry [1]
  September 24 The German Einsatzgruppen murders 800 members of Polish intelligentsia at Bydgoszcz, Poland [2]
  September 25 Soviet troops capture Bialystok, Poland [2]

 


Germany issues new ration cards: 1 lb. meat, 5 lb. bread, ¾ lb. fats, ¾ lb. sugar, and 1 lb. coffee or ersatz coffee per week [1]


Germany launches a massive aerial attack, including incendiaries, on Poland’s capital of Warsaw. Frustrated by stubborn resistance of the Polish defenders, the Luftwaffe launches a relentless bombing raid comprised of 1150 sorties. It became known as Black Monday. [1, 113]

  September 25 Soviet troops capture Bialystok, Poland [2]

 


Germany issues new ration cards: 1 lb. meat, 5 lb. bread, ¾ lb. fats, ¾ lb. sugar, and 1 lb. coffee or ersatz coffee per week [1]


Germany launches a massive aerial attack, including incendiaries, on Poland’s capital of Warsaw. Frustrated by stubborn resistance of the Polish defenders, the Luftwaffe launches a relentless bombing raid comprised of 1150 sorties. It became known as Black Monday. [1, 113]

  September 26 Skua aircraft from HMS Ark Royal score first confirmed kill against Germany [2]
  September 28 Merkulov reports to Stalin that his NKVD group has arrested 923 in Poland thus far [2]

 


The last Polish stronghold, the fortress of Modlin, falls after an 18-day siege [1]

 


The Soviets and Germans divide control of Poland along the River Bug [1]


The “German–Soviet Treaty of Friendship” is signed. An addendum to the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact this agreement entailed joint co-operation in both sides continuing to stamp out “Polish agitation.” Both parties also agreed to initiate population transfers. [114]

  September 29 Poland officially surrenders to Germany and the USSR as the “Soviet-German Boundary & Friendship Treaty” is signed [1]

 


Estonia signs mutual assistance pact with Soviet Union [11]

  September 30 French troops withdraw from German Saar region [1]

 


Gen. Władysław Sikorski becomes prime minister of the Polish government-in-exile in Paris [1]

The Japanese 6th Division begins to fall back from Changsha, Hunan Province, China [2] October 1  
Chinese aircraft bomb the Japanese airfield at Wuhan, Hubei Province, China [2] October 3 The Germans order ruthless exploitation of occupied Poland [1]
Chinese troops capture Miluo and Xinshi near Changsha, Hunan Province, China [2] October 4  
The Chinese 23rd Division attacks the Japanese Navy anchorage (now Miluo) [2]

 


The US Navy Hawaiian Detachment opens at Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii [1]

October 5 Latvia signs mutual assistance treaty with Soviet Union. The USSR forces Latvia to allow Soviet troop bases [1, 11]

 


Hitler watched his victorious 6th Army parade through the streets of Warsaw. 100 miles away, at Kock, the Polish Army was still fighting. [105]
  October 6 Last of the Polish military surrenders to Germany
  October 7 Daladier rejects a proposal from Hitler for a multi-power conference for peace [2]
The Chinese 195th Division pursues retreating Japanese troops in Hunan, China [2] October 8 The Nazis establish their first Jewish ghetto—in Piotrkow, Poland [1]

 


First RAF victory of WWII from an aircraft based in Britain. A Lockheed Hudson of 224 Squadron operating out of RAF Leuchars shot down a German Dornier Do18 flying boat of 2/Küstenfliegergruppe over Jutland. [8]
  October 9 The German battleship Deutschland captures neutral US freighter City of Flint, creating an international incident [1]
Chinese troops recapture all territory in Hubei, Hunan, and Jiangxi Provinces [1] October 10 Lithuania signs mutual assistance pact with Soviet Union. Daladier rejects Hitler peace basis [11]

 


The Annual German Winter Relief drive begins, with forced charitable contributions from German civilians [1]
Chinese troops recapture all territory in Hubei, Hunan, and Jiangxi Provinces [1] October 12 Hans Frank is appointed Gauleiter of the General Government in occupied Poland [2]

 


British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain rejects Hitler’s “peace offer.” [1]
  October 13 In skirmishes along the Maginot Line, the French destroy three bridges over the Rhine [1]
  October 14 In a daring raid to Britain’s naval base at Scapa Flow, German U-boat U-47 sinks the British battleship HMS Royal Oak killing 833 [1, 11]
  October 16 Raeder announces that all enemy merchant ships could be attacked without warning [2]
  October 17 German aircraft damage HMS Iron Duke at Scapa Flow [2]
  October 18 President Roosevelt declares US waters off-limits to submarines of warring nations [1]

 


General Blaskowitz sends a message to Hitler, complaining of SS atrocities in Poland [2]
  October 19

Turkey signs mutual assistance pacts with Britain and France [11]

  October 20

Pope Pius XII’s first encyclical is released in which he condemns racism and dictatorships [116]

  October 22 Soviets clamp down on occupied Poland, closing schools and churches, banning the Polish language and typewriters, and replacing Polish currency with Soviet rubles [1]

 


Gallup poll: 62% of Americans want to aid the Allies, but 95% want to stay out of the war [1]


Goebbels accuses Churchill of sinking British liner Athenia to bring US into war [2]

First flight of the land-based Japanese Mitsubishi G4M (long designation: Mitsubishi Navy Type 1 attack bomber), known as a “Betty” to the Allies. It saw service from June of 1941 until the end of the war. October 23

HMCS SAGUENAY intercepts German tanker Emmy Friederich in the Yucatan Channel, the merchant crew scuttles their ship to avoid having it captured as a prize. The tanker was en route to supply German cruiser Admiral Hipper. [31, 61]


The German seizure of the American freighter City of Flint is revealed [11]

Mitsubishi delivers the second Zero fighter prototype to the Japanese Navy for testing [2]

October 25

The prototype of the Handley Page Halifax makes its first flight [9]

  October 26 Germany annexes former Polish areas of Upper Silesia, West Prussia, Pomerania, Poznan, Ciechanow, Danzig, part of Lódz; the rest of German-occupied Poland comes under the “General Government.” [1]

 


Hitler Youth parade in Posen, Germany [2]

  October 28 Admiral Graf Spee transferrs POWs to tanker Altmark in the South Atlantic [2]
  October 30 Switzerland begins rationing sugar, pasta, rice, wheat, butter, and oil [1]
  November 1 Heinkel demonstrates the first jet aircraft He 178 to the German Air Ministry [2]

 


Polish POW’s captured by the Soviets during the September 1939 defensive war, are placed in Kozielsk and Starobielsk camps. In 1940 those held in Kozielsk are killed in Katyn and those detained in Starobielsk are murdered in Charkov. [55]
  November 4 The US Neutrality Act of 1939 becomes law, repealing the arms embargo in Neutrality Acts of 1935 & 1937 and renewing the expired “cash & carry” clause to allow the sale of arms to Britain & France. [1, 11]
Shigeru Fukudome is named the chief of staff of the Japanese Navy Combined Fleet [2] November 5 The plot by senior German officers under Gen. Franz Halder to arrest or kill Hitler collapses; the officers are appalled at Hitler’s decision to invade Belgium, the Netherlands, and France [1]
  November 6 The Germans deceitfully lure 183 Cracow academics to the CollegiumNovum of the JagiellonianUniversity, then arrested and eventually took them to KLSachsenhausen. [55]
  November 7 Czechoslovakian govt-in-exile receives German plans for the invasion of France [2]
  November 8 Finland refused a Russian demand for territorial exchange [2]

 


Hitler escapes bomb attempt in Munich beer hall. Georg Elser fails in his attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler at the celebration of the 16th anniversary of the Beer Hall Putsch in Munich, Germany. [11, 116]

 


The German Sicherheitsdienst captures two British Secret Intelligence Service agents in Venlo, five meters from the German border. Germany used this to link Britain to a failed assassination attempt on Hitler and to help justify Germany’s invasion of Holland. [127]
  November 9 Adolf Hitler survives assassination attempt at the anniversary of the Beer Hall Putsch in Munich; bomb planted by communist Georg Elser [1]

 


Adolf Hitler issues directive No. 9 against British ports [2]

 


Lodz (renamed Litzmannstadt under German occupation) is incorporated into the German Reich. Later that month, Jews are ordered to wear a yellow armband &, later still, a star, & between 15-17 Nov the cities main synagogues were torched [126]
  November 12 Germany begins stricting point-based clothing rationing, with no clothing ration cards issued to Jews [1]
  November 13 Finnish diplomats depart Moscow as all negotiation attempts fail [2]
  November 16 In Prague, Czechoslovakia, Germans counteract anti-Nazi student protests with arrests and gunfire, and they declare martial law [1]
  November 17 After uprising in Prague, Germans close Czechoslovakian universities, execute 9 students, and send 1200 to concentration camps [1]

 


Nine Czech students are executed as a response to anti-Nazi demonstrations prompted by the death of Jan Opletal. All Czech universities are shut down and more than 1,200 students sent to concentration camps. [44]
  November 19 The German He 177 heavy bomber took its first flight [2]
  November 20 U-33 sinks three small British trawlers off Tory Island [2]
  November 21 Do 18L flying boat took its first flight [2]
  November 23 German Gov. of Poland General Hans Frank orders all Jews over the age of 10 to wear a Jewish Star. It consists of a white armband affixed with a blue six-sided star, worn over the right upper sleeve of one’s outer garments [2, 116]

 


Britain begins rationing bacon and butter [1]


The US celebrates Thanksgiving after President Roosevelt moved the holiday to extend the Christmas shopping season—although 22 states retain the original date. [1]

  November 24 The German secret police, the Gestapo, executes 120 Czech students accused of anti-Nazi propaganda. [2, 116]
  November 25 The 1940 Winter Olympic Games, originally scheduled to be held in Sapporo, Japan, then St. Moritz, Switzerland, and then Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, are cancelled due to the war [1]
  November 26 The Soviets stage a false attack on Mainila, Russia
and use it as an excuse to invade Finland [1,2]
The Japanese capture Nanning, China, an important railhead [1] November 27 Finland makes efforts to de-escalate, asking the USSR to do the same [2]

 


The USSR denounces 1932 non-aggression pact with Finland [1]


Nobel Committee announces cancellation of 1939 Peace Prize. [1]

  November 30 The Winter War begins when Russia invades Finland. The League of Nations expells Russia for the attack.
The Chinese 81st Division attacks Kaifeng, Henan Province, China [2] December 1 After previous day’s Soviet invasion of Finland, Risto Ryti replaces Aimo Cajander as Prime Minister of Finland [1]

 


The first Canadian troop convoy (TC-1) sails from Halifax, Nova Scotia to Britain with 7400 men [1]

  December 2 Finnish troops destroyed the Suvilathi power station to prevent Soviet capture [2]
  December 3 As Soviets advance in Finland, Finnish troops drop back to the Mannerheim Line [1,2]
  December 5 Heavy fighting takes place between Soviet Army and Finnish Army in Karelia [2]

 


Fritz Kuhn, leader of the pro-Nazi German-American Bund, is convicted of embezzlement of Bund funds and is sent to Sing Sing; Gerhard Kunze replaces him over the Bund [1]

  December 7 The Soviet 9th Army attacks in central Karelia, Finland [2]

 


In Soviet-Finnish war, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, and Italy declare neutrality [1]

  December 8 In a Gallup poll, 96.5% of Americans oppose the US entering World War II [1]
Chinese troops launch an attack on Henglingguan Pass in northern China [2] December 10 France bans sale of meat on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Fridays [1]

 


The first convoy of Canadian Army troops bound for Britain sailed out of Halifax. The convoy was escorted by Royal Canadian Navy ships HMCS Ottawa, Restigouche, Fraser, and St. Laurent. [31]
  December 11 Finnish ski troops attack Soviet supply line on Raate Road [1]

 


Finland protests the Soviet invasion at the League of Nations [2]

  December 12 Finnish forces defeat the Soviets in the Battle of Tolvajärvi during the Winter War. It was the first major victory for Finland during the conflict. [116]
  December 13 British cruisers damage Admiral Graf Spee, forcing her to sail for Montevideo [2]
  December 14 The Soviet Union is expelled from the League of Nations after invading Finland on October 30 and starting what would be known as the Winter War. [1, 2, 11, 116]
  December 15 The Red Army assaults Taipale, Finland [2]
Chinese 81st Division captures the city of Kaifeng, Henan, China [2] December 16 Finnish ski troops fight Soviets with first use of homemade “Molotov Cocktails.” [1]
  December 19 Finnish troops destroyed 20 Soviet tanks at Summa, Finland [2]
  December 22 First flight of the Petlyakov VI-100 (Pe-2). Soviet twin engine dive bomber prototype aircraft, later developed as the Pe-2. Regarded as one of the best ground attack aircraft of the war, successful in heavy fighter, reconnaissance and night fighter roles. [8]

 


First flight of the Caproni Ca.313. (Prototype MM.402). Italian twin-engine reconnaissance bomber, development of the Ca.310. [8]

  December 23 A major Finnish counterattack is repulsed by Soviet tanks [2]
  December 24  
  December 25 Red Army resumes attacking the Taipale sector in Finland [2]
  December 26 Finns continue to put pressure on Soviets trapped at Suomussalmi, Finland [2]
  December 27 Finns wipe out all Soviet bridgeheads on the Suvanto River [2]

 


The US State Department protests British removal and censorship of US mail from neutral ships [2]

  December 28 First flight of the XB-24 Liberator, at Lindbergh Field, San Diego, CA, the prototype for what will be America’s most-produced four-engine bomber of the war [1]
  December 29  
  December 30 Soviet 163rd Division was wiped out by Finns at Suomussalmi, Finland [2]
Chinese troops at Kunlun Pass, Guangxi, China [2]  December 31 Finnish 9th Division secures the village of Suomussalmi [2]
1940
Japanese launched major counterattack in Shanxi Province, China [2] January 1 Britain expands conscription to men aged 20-27, adding two million potential draftees [1]
  January 2 Finns attack Soviet troops along the Raate Road in Finland [2]
  January 3 The Finnish 9th Div continued attacks the Soviets along Raate Road [2]
  January 4 First flight of the Fairey Fulmar. British carrier-born fighter aircraft. [8]
  January 6 The Soviet 44th Div begins to retreat from Raate Road region in Finland [2]

 


Britain declares German ships may not use Norwegian waters; Sweden and Norway deny a British request to operate in their waters [1]


Norway and Sweden forbid Allied troops from crossing their territory to aid Finland [1]

  January 7 Semyon Timoshenko took command of Soviet Army forces in Finland [2]

 


In Britain, “BBC Forces Programme” premieres, a second nationwide service (radio channel) with dance music and variety shows meant to appeal to servicemen [1]

 


In the US, “Gene Autry’s Melody Ranch” premieres on CBS radio and runs through 1956 [1]


Battle of Raate Road ends in Finnish victory; over 10,000 have been killed in the Soviet 44th Division [1]

  January 8 Food rationing is introduced. During the war food was rationed to ensure that everyone received the same amount regardless of income or class. Bacon, butter and sugar were the first to be rationed from 8 January 1940 [1,21]

 


Finnish 9th Div takes control of Raate Road. [2]

Australian Comforts Fund is reestablished, for women to send care packages to soldiers [1] January 9  
  January 10 Unofficial peace talks begin between the Soviet Union and Finland [2]

 


A German plane crashes in Belgium with Germany’s plans to invade France through Belgium, much like the Schlieffen plan from WWI. The Allies found the plan so the Germans changed the it and invaded through the Ardennes. [116]


Luftwaffe begins operations from Sicily, limiting British sea traffic in the Mediterranean [1]

  January 11 The Finnish IV Corps pins the Soviet 168th Division north of Lake Lagoda in Finland [2]

 


The British Women’s Section Air Transport Auxiliary ferries their first plane; during WWII, 166 women fly for ATA, 1/8 of all ATA pilots; 15 will die in service [1]

  January 12

The Germans shoot 440 patients of the psychiatric hospital in Chełm in Occupied Poland. The murder was part of the German extermination programme AktionT4 – the mass murder by involuntary euthanasia. [55]

  January 13 The Russian YA-26 prototype fighter, future Yak-1, took its first flight [2]
  January 14 The Enigma code is broken at Bletchley Park in Britain [2]

 


British chemists (pharmacists) are granted an exemption to sugar rationing in order to coat pills [1]


The FBI raids in New York City uncovering guns, bomb-making material, and a plot to sabotage & overthrow the government; 17 members of anti-Semitic “Christian Front” are arrested (later acquitted) [1]

  January 15 Belgium denies British and French troops the right to cross its territory [1]

 


Britain announces twice as many people have been killed on blacked-out roads than in enemy action [1]

Kichisaburo Nomura steps down as Foreign Minister of Japan [2] January 16 Tanker INVERDARGLE. Trinidad to Avonmouth with aviation spirit, struck a mine and sank in the Bristol Channel…of the 44 crew, there were no survivors [142]
  January 17 Polish cryptologist Marian Rejewski brakes the Enigma code in the presence of Alan Turing during their meeting in Paris [1,23]
  January 18 The Finnish 9th Division is ordered to attack the Soviet 54th Division [2]
Chinese troops capture Licheng, Shanxi Province, China [2] January 20 Britain and France agree to send troops and supplies to aid Finland, but they will not arrive in time [1]
The British light cruiser HMS Liverpool stops Japanese liner Asamu Maru off Japan and captures 21 Germans—12 naval reservists are detained, 9 civilians are released [1] January 21 The Soviet 8th Army launches an unsuccessful attack on Finnish Group Talvela [2]

 


Off Scotland, the German U-boat U-22 sinks destroyer HMS Exmouth (all 189 killed) [1]

  January 22 British Ministry of Information begins censoring newsreels [1]
  January 23 Britain and France say they will not honor 200-mile Pan-American neutrality zone and will attack German ships in that zone [1]

 


Animals in the Berlin Zoo are placed on war rations—less meat, no bananas or peanuts [1]

In their war with Japan, the Chinese take Dongyangyuan Pass, Shanxi Province, China [1] January 24 The Finnish Army Force Talvela and the Soviet 8th Army exchange attacks at Kolla, Finland [2]
  January 25 The US Coast Guard establishes the Atlantic Weather Observation Service in cooperation with US Weather Service; cutters patrol and transmit weather observations [1]
  January 27 The US freighter City of Flint returns to US; Capt. Joseph Gainard (merchant marine) receives 1st Navy Cross of WWII. The Germans had captured the neutral freighter, creating an international incident. [1]
Chinese troops capture Lucheng, Shanxi Province, China [2] January 28 Soviet artillery continues to bombard the Mannerheim Line [2]
  January 29 Soviets began negotiating with Finland [2]

 


The German Luftwaffe attacks British shipping in the English Channel, sinking four ships. [1]

  January 30 The first British aircraft victory against a German submarine in WW2 is scored [2]
  January 31 Soviet strength in the Summa sector of Finland grows to 12 divisions [2]
  February 1  
  February 2  
The Japanese 26th Division captures Wuyuan, Suiyuan Province, China [2] February 3  
The Japanese 26th Division captures Linhe, Suiyuan Province, China [2] February 4 The Soviets execute Nikolai Yezhov, the head of the NKVD during the Great Purge in 1937-38; his execution remained secret until 1948. [1]
  February 5 The Allies decide to send 2 British divisions to Finland via Norway despite Norwegian neutrality [2]

 


First sinking of a U-boat by a lone British destroyer: in convoy OA-84 off Land’s End, HMS Antelope sinks U-41 [1]

  February 6 The Finnish 9th Div completes its encirclement of the Soviet 54th Div at Kuhmo
  February 7  
  February 8 Several Finnish pockets are wiped out by the Soviets near Lake Ladoga [2]
  February 9  
  February 10 Over 4000 members of the American Youth Congress march in Washington to protest US being drawn into imperialistic war; President Roosevelt angrily confronts them [1]

 


Soviet troops penetrate the Finnish defensive Mannerheim Line on Karelian Isthmus [1, 2]

  February 11 Finnish troops fell back from the Mannerheim Line [2]

 


The Soviet Union and Germany sign a treaty to exchange Soviet raw materials for German manufactured goods [1]

  February 12 The Finnish government decides to seek peace with the USSR [2]

 


Erwin Rommel is named the commanding officer of the 7. Panzer-Division [2]


The British minesweeper HMS Gleaner sinks the German U-boat U-33 in the Firth of Forth, capturing Enigma machine rotors [1]


Britain institutes paper rationing: newspapers, businesses, and government to decrease use by 40% [1]

  February 13 Mannerheim ordered the Finnish II Army Corps to abandon the Mannerheim Line [2]

 


Germany declares that all British merchant ships will be regarded as warships [1]

  February 14 Food rationing begins in Vatican City [2]
  February 15  
  February 16 The HMS Cossack captures German freighter Altmark and frees POWs [2]
  February 17 Norway protests British violation (Altmark incident) of Norwegian waters [1, 2]

 


German commander Erich von Manstein gives the Manstein Plan to Hitler, calling for invading France via the Ardennes Forest. Hitler didn’t like original plan by others, which call for invading France through Belgium like during WWI [116]

Chinese forces drive the Japanese out of Nanning, China [1] February 18 Soviet troops begin to break the Finnish V-Line [2]
  February 19 The Soviet 18th Div attacks across frozen Lake Suvanto, suffering many casualties [2]
  February 20 Nikolaus von Falkenhorst is appointed to command the German invasion of Norway [2]
  February 21  
  February 22 The Soviet 43rd Division captures Lasisaari and Koivisto, Finland [2]

 


A Luftwaffe He 111s accidentally damages the German destroyer Leberecht Maass, which is then sunk by a mine; the destroyer Max Schultz is sunk by a mine during rescue (588 killed) [1]

  February 23 Britain announces wool shortage due to enthusiastic knitters knitting for the troops [1]
  February 24 British Hawker Typhoon prototype P5212 fighter made her first flight in England

 


Chamberlain condemns German aggression but is still open to talks [2]


British Summer Time begins (daylight savings time moved up for wartime) [1]

  February 25  
  February 26 The US War Department activates Air Defense Command under Brig. Gen. James Chaney [1]
  February 27 Finland requests assistance from Norway and Sweden for the war against Russia [2]
  February 28  
  February 29  
  March 3 In the Soviet-Finnish war, the Soviets launch a final major offensive at Viipuri, Finland [1]
  March 4 Soviet and Finnish troops clash near the Vuoksi River in Viipuri [2]

 


The Soviets launch an offensive towards Viipuri, Finland. [1]

  March 5 The USSR declares Polish officers are enemies and sentences them to death; this will lead to the Katyn Massacre [1]
  March 7 Soviet troops begin to break through the final defense line at Viipuri, Finland [2]
  March 8 Off the Dominican Republic, the light cruiser HMS Dunedin & destroyer HMCS Assiniboine capture the German freighter Hannover, violating Pan-American Neutrality [1]
  March 9 French military intelligence takes possession of a supply of heavy water at the Norsk Hydro plant in Telemark, Norway with permission of the Norwegians [1]
  March 10  
  March 11 Off Wilhelmshaven, British Blenheim bombers sink German U-boat U-31, which will be refloated only to be sunk again, the only U-boat to be sunk twice in WWII [1]

 


Britain begins meat rationing — each person to receive 1 shilling, 10 pence worth per week (about one pound); chicken, game, sausage, and meat pies are not rationed [1]


5 Soviet tanks reach Tammisuo Station in northeast Viipuri, Finland [2]

  March 12 Finnish President Kallio authorizes his delegates in Moscow full powers to negotiate [2]
  March 13 The Winter War ends with the Moscow Peace Treaty. Finnish and Soviet representatives signed the Moscow Peace Treaty at 0200 hours [2]

 


25,000 Finnish soldiers were killed; 200,000 Soviets [1]


Canada forms the Inventions Board to process weapon suggestions from civilians. Canada discontinues manufacture of civilian-use trucks. [1]

  March 14 The Finnish Parliament meets and debates the ratification of the Moscow Peace Treaty [2]

 


Germans are required to turn in copper, bronze, brass, lead, tin, nickel, and other metals for the war effort [1]

  March 15 The Finnish parliament ratifies the Moscow Peace Treaty 145 to 3 [2]
  March 16 German Ju 88 dive bombers bomb the Royal Navy Home Fleet base at Scapa Flow [2]
  March 19 The Royal Air Force bombs a seaplane base at Hörnum on Sylt Island, the first bombs to land on German soil during the war. [1]
  March 20 Beria dispatches 11 NKVD squads to Ukraine and Byelorussia to deal with resistance [2]
  March 21 Édouard Daladier resigns as Prime Minister of France after vote of no confidence from Parliament, replaced by Paul Reynaud. [1]

 


The first German merchant ship is sunk by a British submarine: HMS Ursula sinks German freighter Heddernheim north of Denmark [1]

The Chinese secure major roads leading into Wuyuan, Suiyuan Province, China [2] March 22 The Royal Navy increases patrols off Norway as tensions rise between Britain, Norway, and Germany. [1]
  March 23 Germany requires car owners to donate batteries and requires church bells to be melted down [1]
  March 24 Sunspots temporarily disrupt shortwave radios, telephones, and telegraphs in the Western Hemisphere [1]
  March 25 The neutral US allows sale of military aircraft to the Allies [1]

 


Britain doubles the butter ration to ½ pound per week [1]

Chinese troops evacuate Wuyuan, Suiyuan Province, China [2] March 26 First flight of Curtiss C-46 Commando cargo plane in St. Louis, MO. [1]
  March 27 Sixteen hundred Jewish refugees arrive in Palestine, but are interned by the British for illegal entry [1]
  March 28 Britain and France agree not to make separate peace treaties with Germany [1]
The Japanese establish the puppet Reorganized National Government of the Republic of China in Nanjing under president Wang Jingwei [1] March 30  
  March 31 Mussolini informs King Vittorio Emanuele III that Italy would soon enter the war [2]

 


The German auxiliary cruiser Atlantis sets sail; it will sink 22 ships before being sunk on 22 November 1941 [1]

Chinese troops capture Wuyuan, Suiyuan Province, China [2] April 1 The British Ministry of Food announced Dig for Victory campaign to encourage growing food at home [1]
  April 3 Soviets begin massacre of 20,000 Polish officers in Katyn Forest [1]
  April 5 Chamberlain announces that a German invasion of W. Europe would not be successful [2]
  April 8 Polish submarine Orzel sinks German transport ship Rio de Janeiro in the Skagerrak [2]

 


The Allies announce the laying of minefields at three points in Norwegian waters [11]


Gallup poll: 84% of Americans want Allies to win, 2% want German victory, and only 23% want US to join the war [1]


The German invasion fleet arrives off of Norway; two German troop transports are sunk by a Norwegian destroyer and by a Polish submarine. In heavy fighting, British destroyer HMS Glowworm is sunk while ramming German heavy cruiser Admiral Hipper [1]

  April 9 German forces land at six key locations in Norway. The German government claims the invasion is made to forestall a British invasion [30]

 


Germans take Oslo, Kristiansand, Stavanger, Bergen, Trondheim, and Narvik [1]


Germany invades Denmark and Norway, with the first use of combat paratroopers in history. Denmark falls in less than six hours, with 16 Danish soldiers killed and 20 German soldiers killed. [1]

  April 10 2 German and 2 British destroyers are sunk at First Battle of Narvik [2]

 


The Icelandic parliament grants full powers to Icelandic cabinet, effectively declaring independence from German-occupied Denmark [1]

  April 12 British bomb air base at Kristiansand [11]
  April 13 Second battle of Narvik [11]
  April 14 King Haakon of Norway appeals to his people to resist [2]

 


In Norway, British and French troops land near Narvik and at Namsos to assist Norwegians against German invasion [1,11]

  April 15 British troops land in the Lofoten Islands in northern Norway [2]

 


Germans occupy Kongsvinger [11]


The Germans appoint a council to run the Norwegian government [1]


Off Narvik, Norway, British destroyers Brazen and Fearless sink German submarine U-49; documents about the Enigma machine float to the surface and are captured by the British [1]

Ocean liner RMS Queen Mary arrives in Australia to be refitted as a troopship [1] April 17 British War Cabinet approves direct troop landings at Trondheim, Norway [2]

 


British forces land at Andalsnes [11]


Adm. Karl Dönitz withdraws German U-boats from Norwegian waters to study torpedo failures [1]

  April 18 German troops advance past Oslo but are held up at the village of Bagn [2]

 


British troops land at Åndalsnes, Norway [1]

  April 19 Neubaufahrzeug prototype heavy tanks arrive in Oslo to intimidate Norwegians [2]

 


First clash between British and German troops in Norway, at Verdal, north of Trondheim [1]

  April 20 Keith Park takes command of the 11 Group of the Royal Air Force Fighter Command [2]

 


Hitler authorizes formation of Norwegian-Danish “Viking” SS regiment [1]

  April 21 Danish air base at Aalborg bombed [11]

 


First US military casualty of WWII—Army Air Force observer Capt. Robert Losey is killed in German bombing at Dombås, Norway [1]


British and German troops engage in heavy fighting at Lillehammer, Norway [1]

  April 22 Trade agreement between Germany and Rumania signed [11]

 


In Norway, British troops begin retreat at Namsos and Lillehammer [1]

  April 23 The British 146th Brigade retreats to Namsos, Norway [2]
  April 24 German troops repel a British attack near Trondheim, Norway [2]

 


Germany takes direct control of the occupied area in Norway [11]


The Germans appoint Josef Terboven as Reichskommissar of Norway [1]


US Naval Attaché Lt. Cdr. Ole Hagen escorts American civilians from Oslo, Norway into neutral Sweden [1]

  April 25 British troops hold against a German attack at Kvam, Norway

 


Germans claim control of railway from Trondheim to Sweden [11]

Troops of the Chinese 3rd and 9th War Areas breach into southern Nanchang, China April 26 Satisfied with Norway progress, Hitler ordered the resumption of French invasion planning [2]

 


The Allies announce withdrawals north of Lillehammer [11]

  April 29 Italian protests on Allied blockade [11]

 


The Royal Air Force establishes Commonwealth Air Training Plan to train air crews in Canada, Australia, and New Zealand [1]

  April 30 The first guarded Jewish ghetto was established at Lodz, Poland [2]
The prototype of the Douglas SBD Dauntless makes its maiden flight May 1 Norwegian troops in Lillehammer surrendered [2]

 


In Norway, German troops from Oslo and Bergen link, and the British evacuate Åndalsnes [1]


British pass union trade agreement allowing women to work in munitions factories [1]

  May 3 Norwegian troops south of Trondheim surrendered to the Germans [2]

 


Evacuation of Namsos and southern Norway revealed [11]

  May 4 Germany begins rationing gasoline; many of the remaining civilian cars and trucks still in circulation are ordered off the roads [1]
  May 5 After a 25-day battle, the Norwegian fortress of Hegra surrenders [2]

 


Norwegian government-in-exile is established in London [1]


Off Denmark, the damaged submarine HMS Seal surrenders to German seaplanes and a patrol vessel, the only British vessel surrendered by her commander during the war [1]

  May 6 First flight of the Dewoitine D-750, French low-winged monoplane twin-engine 3 seat torpedo bomber prototype
  May 7 British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain faces criticism during the Norway Debate [2]

 


President Roosevelt orders the US Pacific Fleet to stay at Pearl Harbor indefinitely as a deterrent to Japan [1]

Japanese 3rd Division crosses the Bai River in Hubei, China [2] May 8 Chamberlain secures majority of 81 in debate on Norway. Yugoslavia opens trade negotiations with Russia [11]

 


British Labour Party calls for vote of no confidence in Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain’s government [1]


Gen. Semyon Timoshenko replaces Marshal Kliment Voroshilov as Soviet defense commissar [1]

  May 9 The last day of the ‘Phoney War

 


Four Polish battalions arrived at Narvik, Norway. [2]


British troops occupy Iceland [11]


In Nazi-occupied Poland, Jews are banned from parks, museums, restaurants, trains, and from land ownership [1]


French scientist Maurice Ponte flies one of his improved cavity magnetrons to Britain, which will lead to British E1189, essential for radar. [1]

  May 10 Germany declares war on Belgium and the Netherlands as they roll through them and into France. The invasion of France and the Low Countries begins, thus officially ending the Phoney War. [11,30]

 


Winston Churchill becomes Prime Minister of the UK.


The port of #Calais became a target for the Luftwaffe and the docks in particular were badly damaged in a succession of air raids [30]

1940 New York World’s Fair opens with theme “The World of Tomorrow.” [1] May 11 The German offensive continues. The advance in Holland is very rapid and even more of the Dutch army is put out of action. [43]

 


Churchill names Lord Beaverbrook the head of Ministry of Aircraft Production [2]


Germans capture Maastricht and Eben Emael. Allied forces occupy Netherlands West Indies. [11]


the Germans complete occupation of Luxembourg [1]


Switzerland mobilizes its army, while Swiss citizens living on the German border flee [1]


British & French land in Dutch West Indies (Aruba & Curaçao) to protect oil installations; US President Roosevelt states these actions do not violate the Monroe Doctrine [1]


British & French armies join Belgians on River Dyle in Belgium [1]

  May 12 French tanks defeat their German counterparts at Hannut, Belgium in first tank battle of the western front[1,2]

 


Britain begins internment of male German and Austrian nationals ages 16-60 in military areas (eastern & southern coasts) [1]


German troops enter France via the Ardennes Forest, reaching the Meuse River at Sedan, Monthermé, and Dinant. [1]

  May 13 The German panzer divisions cross the Meuse River in two places at Sedan and Dinant [43]

 


Germans cross Moerdijk bridge. Netherlands government flees to England. [11]


Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands, her family, and her government flee to Britain [1]


In main attack in France, German troops cross the Meuse at Sedan to trap Allies in the Low Countries. [1]

  May 14 First flight of the Yermolayev Yer-2, DB240, long-range Soviet medium bomber

 


Britain forms Local Defence Volunteers (later called the Home Guard); more than 250,000 men aged 17-65 enroll in the first 24 hours. [1]


From Sedan, France, German tanks under Gen. Heinz Guderian drive west to trap Allied forces in Belgium. [1]


The Netherlands surrenders to Germany after the Luftwaffe bombs Rotterdam and Utrecht [1]

  May 15 Dutch General Winkelman signs the Dutch surrender document [2]

 


Germans cross Meuse line at three points, penetrate extension of Maginot Line. [11]


At Gembloux, Belgium, Germans lose 250 tanks to French artillery, but the French are forced to fall back as Belgian troops retreat [1]


Britain reduces weekly butter ration from 8 ounces to 4 ounces per person [1]


In the US, nylon stockings first go on the market, made by DuPont [1]

  May 16 Gamelin tells Churchill French reserves do not exist as the Germans surge onwards! [2,43]
  May 17 French 4th Armored Division attacks the German southern flank at Laon Colonel Charles de Gaulle launches the 200-tank counterattack at Montcornet but fails [1,2]

 


Dutch abandon resistance in Zeeland. Germans take Brussels. Belgian government moves to Ostend. French line broken south of Sedan. [11]


Germans take Brussels, Belgium [1]


Paris is declared a military zone, martial law is declared, and police begin carrying rifles [1]

  May 18 German troops captures Antwerp, Belgium [1,2]

 


In a radio address, aviator and isolationist Charles Lindbergh accuses President Roosevelt of creating “a defense hysteria” and states, “If we desire peace, we have only to stop asking for war.” [1]

  May 19 Weygand replaced Gamelin as Chief of the General Staff and Commander-in-Chief of French forces [1,2]

 


Marshal Henri Pétain is named Vice Premier of France [1]


Germans annex districts of Eupen and Malmedy from Belgium [11]

  May 15  
  May 20 Guderian captures Amiens at 0900, Abbeville at 1900, and Noyelles-sur-Mer at 2000 [2]
  May 21 20th Guards Brigade, consisting of the 2nd Irish Guards, the 2nd Welsh Guards and the 69th Anti-Tank Regiment, are despatched from Dover, arriving in Boulogne at dawn on the 22nd [30]

 


Erwin Rommel is awarded the 1939 clasp to his Iron Cross First Class medal [2]


Germans break through on Somme, capture Arras and Amiens, reach channel at Abbeville. [11]


Britain adopts national conscription of property and labour [11]

  May 22 Belgians retreat as German forces move along the French coast. Churchill is in France to arrange another offensive but there just aren’t the men available to make it work! [43]

 


British codebreakers at Bletchley Park decode new German Luftwaffe Enigma code [1]


Britain passes Emergency Powers Act, giving government authority over persons & property [1]


German panzers strike north from Abbeville, France toward Dunkirk [1]

  May 25 The 1st transport of Jews arrive at Mauthausen-Gusen Concentration Camp in Austria
  May 26 The Siege of Calais ends with the surrender of British and French forces to the Germans

 


British Gen. Sir John Dill is named Chief of Imperial General Staff [1]


Gort gives order to evacuate the BEF. At 6.57pm that same day, Vice-Admiral Ramsey receives his orders to commence Operation Dynamo, with the 129 ferries, coasters, Schuyts (scoots) and small craft at his disposal [30]


Operation Dynamo, the evacuation at Dunkirk begins: 300,000 British & French troops will be evacuated from French beaches by everything from destroyers to civilian fishing boats, through June 4 [1]

  May 26 – June 4 Evacuation of Dunkirk – 11874 Allied personnel were evacd from Dunkerque harbor and 5930 from nearby beaches.2nd Battalion Royal Ulster Rifles held off enemy attacks in the rearguard of the BEF as the force retreated to Dunkirk

 

[2, 3]

  May 27 The first 7,669 British troops were evacuated from Dunkerque [2]

 


King Leopold III of Belgium offered surrender terms to Germany [2]


Germans take Calais, France [1]


British weekly sugar ration cut from 12 oz to 8 oz per person [1]


The FBI receives 2900 reports of espionage and sabotage after President Roosevelt’s Fireside Chat warning about “fifth columnists” the night before. [1]

  May 28 11874 Allied personnel were evacuated from Dunkerque harbor and 5930 from nearby beaches [2]

 


King Leopold surrenders the Belgian army [1,11]


Norwegian and French forces land at and take port of Narvik, Norway, the first Allied infantry victory of the war [1]

  May 29 Allies announce capture of Narvik. [11]

 


Off Dunkirk, German torpedo boats and the Luftwaffe sink British destroyers Wakeful, Grafton, and Grenade, and many other ships, killing over 1000 Allied troops [1]

  May 30 Benito Mussolini advised Adolf Hitler that Italy was ready to enter the war [2]

 


Canada bans the Communist Party and the National Unity Party (Nazi) [1]


Germany increases food rations due to increased supplies from newly conquered countries [1]


Britain orders modern destroyers to leave Dunkirk due to heavy losses [1]


First French troops are evacuated from Dunkirk [1]

  May 31 Italy breaks off commercial negotiations with Britain [11]

 


In Italy, civilians are banned from driving private cars, and a gasoline conservation plan is announced [1]


The most successful day in Operation Dynamo. Gen. Bernard Montgomery, British commander Lord Gort, and Gen. Oliver Leese are evacuated from Dunkirk, along with 68,014 troops [1,43]


Britain has road signs removed and railway signs obscured to confuse potential invaders [1]

  June 1 Heinz Guderian is named the commander of Panzer Group Guderian [2]

 


British troops withdraw from Dunkirk perimeter, leaving defense to the French [1]


The USS Washington is launched at the Philadelphia Navy Yard, America’s first new battleship since 1921 [1]

  June 2  
  June 3 The last group of British troops at Dunkirk are evacuated before the break of dawn [2]

 


Two hundred Luftwaffe bombers bomb Paris, France, killing 254 [1]


The British establish night curfew for foreigners [1]


British Prime Minister Winston Churchill orders the formation of commando units to raid Nazi-occupied Europe [1]

  June 4 British Prime Minister Winston Churchill gives famous speech: “We shall fight on the beaches…We shall never surrender.” [1,2]

 


Konstantin Rokossovsky is promoted to the rank of major general [2]


The Germans take Dunkirk and 40,000 French POWs, but 300,000 British & French troops have been successfully evacuated [1]

  June 5 The Germans launch attack on Somme-Aisne front [11]

 


The Battle of France begins: Germans launch offensive south in France [1]


Britain announces new emergency measures: strikes are banned, holidays discouraged, and miners and farmers are not to leave jobs without government permission [1]

  June 6 Germans advance seventeen miles below Abbeville [11]
  June 7 5,200 British troops embarked transports at Narvik for evacuation [2]

 


In the longest bombing mission to date French bomber (Farman 223.4 “Jules Verne”) is the first allied plane of the 2nd World War to bomb Berlin…alone and without escort [1,30]


King Haakon VII of Norway, his family and government, evacuate from Norway to Britain as Germans advance [1]


The RAF’s first ace of WWII, Flying Officer Edgar “Cobber” Kain of New Zealand (17 victories) is killed when buzzing an airfield in his Hurricane [1]

  June 8 German 5th and 7th Panzer Divisions cross the Seine River in France [2]

 


Off Norway, German battlecruisers Gneisenau & Scharnhorst sink British carrier Glorious and destroyers Ardent & Acasta (1537 killed on 3 ships) [1]

  June 9 The Norwegian 6th Div surrenders to the Germans; a formal armistice is planned for midnight [2]

 


The USSR issues the order for the invasion of the Baltic States [2]

  June 10 Italy declares war on the UK and France [1,11]

 


Tanks under Guderian advanced toward Chalons-sur-Marne, France [2]


 In France, German troops cross the Seine, and British troops begin to evacuate from Le Havre and St. Valéry [1]


Norway surrenders to Nazi Germany, beginning an occupation that would last until the end of the war. King Haakon VII and his heir fled to Britain. [35]


President Roosevelt makes first speech pledging aid to Britain, in his commencement speech at the University of Virginia, where his son, Franklin Jr., is receiving his degree [1]

  June 11 German troops capture Le Havre, France [2]

 


Gen. Maxime Weygand decides to declare Paris an open city, although civilians aren’t informed for another two days. [1]


Italian planes bomb Malta in the first of 3340 Axis air raids to the island over the next three years [1]


Britain orders the internment of all male Italians ages 17-70 who have resided in Britain under 20 years, including those who fled Mussolini’s regime. [1]


Italian troops invade France along the Riviera and in the Alps, but do not advance. [1]

The Japanese bomb Chongqing, China with 154 aircraft [1] June 12 Gen. Maxime Weygand orders a general retreat to the Loire River, abandoning Paris [1]

 


The military governor of Paris Gen. Pierre Héring evacuates, leaving US Ambassador William Bullitt unofficially in charge of the city [1]

  June 13 Soviet troops began massing on the borders of the Baltic States [2]

 


Allies decide not to defend Paris [11]


The North Carolina-class battleship USS North Carolina BB-55 is launched at the New York Navy Yard [52]


Churchill meets Reynaud for the last time as the French retreat outside Paris, Spain declares itself a non-belligerent and Roosevelt plays the system to get arms to Britain. [43]


Germans take Le Havre, France, and enter Paris suburbs [1]


First naval skirmish in the Mediterranean in WWII: the British submarine Odin attacks Italian cruisers Fiume and Gorizia [1]

  June 14 The Nazis send first prisoners to Auschwitz – political prisoners from Poland [1]

 


Britain bans the ringing of church bells, which is reserved for invasion alerts [1]


German troops take Paris [1]

  June 15 Soviet troops engage Latvian border guards at Maslenki, Latvia [2]

 


USSR occupies Lithuania [1]


The German 1st Army crosses the Maginot Line in the Saar; German 7th Army crosses the Rhine at Colmar [1]


Bread and flour are rationed in the Nazi-occupied Netherlands [1]

  June 16 The Soviet invasion of Latvia and Estonia begins [2]

 


French Prime Minister Paul Reynaud resigns, is replaced by Marshal Philippe Pétain [1]


The Curie Laboratory in France transfers 410 lb of Norwegian heavy water to the British [1]

  June 17 Off St. Nazaire, France, the Luftwaffe sinks liner HMT Lancastria carrying soldiers & refugees evacuating from France, the worst maritime loss in British history (about 3400/5800 killed) [1,53]

 


France askes Germany for armistice [11]


As German troops cross the Loire near Orléans, French Prime Minister Philippe Pétain offers the surrender of France and orders French troops to stop fighting [1]


German Gen. Erwin Rommel’s 7th Panzer Division advances 240 km in one day, a world record, as Panzers move to trap the French 10th Army in Normandy [1]


Soviets occupy Estonia and Latvia [1]

  June 18  Hitler and Mussolini confer at Munich [11]

 


In a speech to Parliament, Churchill declares: “The Battle of France is over…the Battle of Britain is about to begin,” and “This was their finest hour.” [1]


From London, Gen. Charles de Gaulle makes radio appeal for French to fight under him and not surrender, but few in France hear this broadcast [1]

  June 19 Beaverbrook reports that British aircraft production is exceeding the rate of loss [2]
  June 20 German troops capture Brest and Lyons [2]

 


France asks Italy for armistice [11]

  June 21 The Polish government-in-exile arrives in London from France [1]

 


Canada introduces military conscription, but overseas service is voluntary [1]

In Japan, Prince Konoye Fumimora forms a new cabinet with Hideki Tojo as Minister of War [1] June 22 France Surrenders to Germany. Armistice signed between France and Germany at Compiègne, splitting into a Nazi-occupied zone and a “free” zone based in Vichy [1,11]
  June 23 Maxime Weygand expells Charles de Gaulle from the French Army [2]

 


General de Gaulle forms French National Committee [11]

  June 24 The Franco-Italian armistice was signed at Villa Olgiata near Rome [2,11]
  June 25 The UK declares war on Vichy France
  June 26 The Packard Motor Car Company received a license to build Merlin engines for P-51 fighters [2]

 


Russian ultimatum to Rumania demands the return of Bessarabia [11]


French General Charles De Gaulle forms the French Volunteer Legion in London [1]


The USSR orders a 56-hr work week, imprisonment for quitting jobs, and fines for tardiness [1]


Britain reduces the meat ration due to shipping losses from German U-boats [1]

  June 27 The British War Cabinet orders the Royal Navy to seize or destroy all French warships [2]

 


British and Australians appeal to America for help in relation to the Japanese and the British government make plans to stop the French fleet returning to French ports. [43]


Rumania cedes Bessarabia and northern Bukovina [11]


President Roosevelt declares a national emergency and invokes the Espionage Act of 1917 to control shipping in territorial waters and the Panama Canal and to take measures against sabotage [1]


Roosevelt forms the National Defense Research Committee under Dr. Vannevar Bush to coordinate civilian and military scientific and medical research [1]

  June 28 Britain announces evaluation of Channel Islands [11]

 


Luftwaffe bombs Jersey and Guernsey in the Channel Islands [1]


Italo Balbo, Governor-General of Italian Libya and Commander-in-Chief of Italian North Africa, is shot down & killed by Italian antiaircraft fire during RAF raid on Tobruk [1]

  June 29 The USSR begins the third wave of deportations from Polish eastern borderlands occupied by the Soviets on Sept. 17, 1939. This deportation targets Polish civilians who fled from western to eastern Poland following the German invasion of Poland on Sept. 1, 1939 [50]
  June 30  
  July Battle of Britain air war begins
  July 1 Darlan ensures that French warships would be scuttled should German capture be imminent. [2]
  July 2 US Congress passes the Export Control Act, giving the president the power to control or ban exports of munitions and critical materials. [1]

 


Off Ireland, German U-boat U-47 sinks British ocean liner Arandora Star; 805/1673 killed, mostly Axis POWs, civilian internees, and Jewish refugees bound for Canada [1]

  July 3 British seize French warships in British ports [11]

 


The Battle of Mers-el-Kébir takes place between the British and French Naval forces off the coast of French Algeria and in East Africa, the Italians are attacked at Metema in Ethiopia. [43]

  July 4 German naval and air forces sink five merchant ships of convoy OA178 [2]

 


Italians capture Kassala and Galabat [11]

  July 5 Romania announces that it had joined the Axis Powers [2]

 


The French attack Gibraltar as the French government condemns the British attack at Oran and Germany vows to use the French Navy against the British [43]


France decides to break off diplomatic relations with Britain [11]

  July 6 The first German U-boat base opens in France, at Lorient[1]
  July 7  
  July 8  
  July 9  
The Japanese deploy the new A6M Zero fighters against Chinese forces [2] July 10 National Assembly of the Third Republic of France votes to ban the Third Republic, granting Marshal Philippe Pétain dictatorial powers and the ability to alter the constitution. French motto “Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité” is replaced with “Travail, Famille, Patrie” (work, family, fatherland). [1]

 


Battle of Britain begins with German Luftwaffe attacks on British shipping and on southern England [1]

  July 11 Bernard Montgomery is made a Companion of the Order of the Bath [2]

 


Petain draws up new basic laws for France [11]

Communist Mao Zedong orders attacks against Nationalist positions in Jiangsu Province [2] July 12  
  July 13  
  July 14 Vichy French bombers attack Gibraltar, causing no damage [2]
  July 15 British withdraw from Moyale [11]
  July 16 Italians claim occupation of Dolo Salient [11]
  July 17 In England, pub owner Percy Tibble captures 4 downed German airmen with a toy pistol [1]
  July 18 Royal Air Force sinks German invasion barges in Rotterdam, Holland and St. Omer, France [1]

 


At Democratic convention in Chicago, Franklin Roosevelt is nominated for a third term as president with vice presidential candidate Henry A. Wallace. [1]

  July 19 Hitler in Reichstag speech demands that Britain stop fighting [11]

 


Germany holds a victory parade in Berlin [1]


Hitler appoints twelve field marshals and promotes Hermann Göring to the new rank of Reichsmarschall [1]


Hitler orders Britain to settle for peace; BBC replies unofficially in the negative within one hour. [1]

The New Hebrides becomes the first French territory to ally with the Free French rather than Vichy. [1] July 20  Luftwaffe night-fighters (Messerschmitt 110s) first shoot down a British plane [1]
  July 21  
  July 22  
  July 23 A provisional Czechoslovakian government is formed in London, the UK buys up 40% of US planes being produced and the LDV change their name to the Home Guard! [43]
  July 24 The Luftwaffe attacked Rolls Royce factory at Glasgow, damaging only neighboring buildings [2]

 


A French ship is sunk as it repatriates French forces, the Italians bomb Palestine, and the Romanian oilfields are closed off from the British after the Astra Romano oil company is seized by the Romanian government. [11,43]

  July 25 German aircraft attack Dover, Portsmouth, and Portland [2]

 


Over the next few days, British convoy CW-8 off Dover is the first to be attacked by the Germans from land, sea, and air [1]


Women and children are evacuated from the British territory of Gibraltar [1]

  July 26 German submarine U-34 attacks convoy OB-188 [2]

 


The British detain Rumanian tankers at Port Said. Rumanian delagates confer with Ribbentrop and Hitler at Salzburg [11]

  July 27 The first 5 Beaufighter IF fighters were handed over to the RAF for eval [1,2]

 


Hitler receives Bulgarian delegates [11]

More than 100 Japanese bombers attack Chongqing, China [2] July 28 Mussolini receives Rumanian delegates [11]

 


Road and rail links between Vichy France and Nazi-occupied France are severed [1]

  July 29 40 Stukas attack Dover, England [2]

 


Pan-American Conference adopts Act of Havana [11]


Prime Minister Winston Churchill’s cabinet meets in the underground Cabinet War Rooms for the first time (now called Churchill War Rooms) [1]

  July 30 Five German air raids target the northeastern British coast in the morning [2]
Mitsubishi delivers the first production A6M Zero fighters to the Japanese Navy. [1,2] July 31 In Lithuania, Japanese Consul Chiune Sugihara begins writing thousands of visas for Jews to flee through the USSR into Japanese-controlled China [1]
  August 1 Adolf Galland is awarded the Knights Cross for achieving 17 kills [2]

 


The Duke of Windsor (former King Edward VIII) sails from Portugal to the Bahamas, foiling a German kidnapping attempt [1]

  August 2  
  August 3 Italian troops under Gen. Guglielmo Nasi invade British Somaliland from Italian Ethiopia [1]
  August 4 Italian troops march in three columns toward Berbera, British Somaliland [2]

 


US journalist Varian Fry of the Emergency Rescue Committee arrives in Lisbon; in Marseille, he will help 2000 German refugees & Jews escape [1]

  August 5 The Latvian Soviet Socialist Republic was officially incorporated into the Soviet Union [2]

 


Germany requires citizens to carry Ahnenpass, proving “racial purity” back to 1800. [1]


Art “Donny” Donahue becomes the first American pilot to engage enemy aircraft in WWII (flying with the RAF in a Spitfire) [1]


German Fw 200 Condor long-range bombers begin patrols over convoy routes around Britain [1]

  August 6  Italian troops under Brigadier General Bertello capture Odweina, British Somaliland

 


In Luxembourg, Germans ban the speaking of French [1]


The first meeting of the US National Inventors Council, to screen ideas from scientists & amateur inventors that might have military use—200,000 ideas screened during the war; 560 were deemed valuable. [1]

 Lord Halifax and Joseph Grew voice concerns over Japanese demands for Indochina [2] August 7 Germany annexes Alsace and Lorraine in France [1]
  August 8 The first operational Bombe installed in Hut 1 at Bletchley Park comes into operation  [59]

 


South Africa commences its Air Training Scheme. Eventually, 38 South African–based air schools are employed to train RAF, South African, and other allied air and ground crews, turning out a total of 33,347 aircrewmen. [60]


The 20th (Minelaying) Destroyer Flotilla lays minefields around the Falls Bank (North Sea) over the next two nights  [62]


The 2nd Battalion, UK (Scottish) Black Watch arrives in British Somaliland [2]


Beginning of large daylight air raids on Britain. [11]


The Luftwaffe intensifies bombing of British ports; 450 aircraft attack British convoy CW-9 off Sussex, the largest attack so far [1]


Romania signs an economic treaty with Germany, ceding most of its oil and grain production to Germany [1]

  August 9 Italian destroyers MAESTRALE, GRECALE, LIBECCIO, SCIROCCO (pic) lay more mines off Pantelleria. Each could carry between 50 – 60 mines. [62]

 


Estonian Soviet Socialist Republic is officially incorporated into the Soviet Union [2]


Rumania reports to have agreed to cede southern Dobruja to Bulgaria [11]

The British agree to withdraw from Shanghai and northern China to appease Japan and to reinforce Singapore and India [1] August 10 In occupied Belgium, Germany bans listening to the BBC on the radio [1]
  August 11 Major General Reade Godwin-Austen takes over the defense of Berbera, British Somaliland [2]

 


25 Battle of Britain Pilots are killed. [67]


German Messerschmitt Me 109s first operates as fighter-bombers, against British ships [1]


In Paris, Nazis form the Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg to loot art from Jews [1]

  August 12 The second phase of the Battle of Britain begins as the Luftwaffe attacks switch from shipping to RAF airfields and aircraft plants to prepare for invasion—the first true strategic air operation in history. The Luftwaffe first attacks British radar stations; disruption to the Ventnor radar station on the Isle of Wight leaves a hole in radar [1]

 


The first German artillery shells land on British soil, destroying four homes in Dover [1]


Britain declares wasting food to be illegal [1]

  August 13 The German Luftwaffe launches the first day of “Operation Eagle Attack” known as Eagle Day or Adlertag. The operation’s aim is to destroy RAF Fighter Command. Around 500 aircraft attack airfields and radar stations, inflicting significant casualties and damage, but not enough to achieve what they wanted. They mount a total of 1,485 sorties with Fighter Command flying 727 sorties in response. Destroyed are 47 RAF aircraft on the ground & 13 in combat. The Germans lose 47 aircraft. Three British pilots are killed, while the Luftwaffe lose almost 90. [1,2,71,72]

 


Italian pressure on Greece to renounce British guarantee [11]

A Hudson bomber crashes in Canberra, Australia, killing top Army officers and government ministers, leading to the fall of the Menzies government [1] August 14 mines claim an Italian merchant vessel off Libya and a German Auxiliary Minesweeper in the German Bight [62]

 


British, Commonwealth,  and Italian troops clash near Berbera [2]


British begin air raids on northern Italy [11]


As Italians advance in British Somaliland, British evacuate Berbera, the capital [1]


IRA Chief of Staff Sean Russell dies of a perforated ulcer on a German U-boat en route to Ireland to ignite a coup [1]

  August 15 Italian troops continue the attack at Tug Argan, British Somaliland [2]

 


The Germans bomb Croydon and Tilbury.  [11]


Off Greece, the Italian sub Delfino sinks the WWI-era Greek cruiser Helli to try to provoke Greece into the war. [1,11]


‘The Greatest Day’, saw the heaviest fighting of the Battle of Britain so far. The Luftwaffe deploys over 2,000 sorties. The Luftwaffe sends 520 bombers & 1270 fighters against Britain, the highest number of the Battle of Britain, for the first time sending bombers from bases in Norway. It turns out to be the Luftwaffe’s “Black Thursday”: Germany loses 76 aircraft. RAF Fighter Command flies 974 sorties losing 34 aircraft, plus 75 destroyed on the ground. [1]


The first edition of the Belgian underground resistance newspaper La Libre Belgique, a bi-monthly paper with a circulation of 70,000, which runs through September 1944 [1]

  August 16 Hungary and Romania begin negotiating over Transylvania [2]

 


Greek ships are bombed by Italian planes [11]


The German air force lays 2 mines inland from Portsmouth & Portland specifically designed to kill disposal teams. North of Portsmouth the booby trap detonates prematurely & exposes the workings. [62]


Test platoon of 48 volunteers from the 29th Infantry Regiment makes the first US Army parachute jump from an aircraft at Fort Benning, GA [1]


Minesweeping trawler HMT REGARDO is damaged by German bombing off the Isle of Wight. She is towed to Cowes by minesweeping trawler HMT CAPE SPARTEL for repair [62]


The German air force lays 2 mines inland from Portsmouth & Portland specifically designed to kill disposal teams. North of Portsmouth the booby trap detonates prematurely & exposes the workings. [62]


A test platoon of 48 volunteers from the 29th Infantry Regiment makes the first US Army parachute jump from an aircraft at Fort Benning, GA [1]

  August 17 The first flight of the Douglas A-20/DB-7 Havoc (Boston). French variant of the American light bomber and night fighter. [2]

 


Adolf Hitler declares a total blockade of the British Isles [1,2,11,30]


No. 1 RAF Squadron became operational at RAF Northolt in west London. They fought in the Battle of Britain for nearly two months, suffering the loss of 3 pilots killed and 13 wounded. [80]


The first US pilot volunteering with the RAF dies (crash-landed 8/16)—former Olympic bobsled gold medalist P/O William Fiske, the only American killed in the Battle of Britain [1]


Republican presidential nominee Wendell Willkie makes a speech in favor of establishing a military draft (which Roosevelt favors), removing pressure on GOP congress members to oppose the draft [1]

  August 18 The Luftwaffe launches a brutal offensive during the Battle of Britain, in what became known as the “Hardest Day”. They tried to destroy the RAF by flying over 850 fighter & bomber aircraft. To counter, RAF Fighter Command launches 927 aircraft to defend from the incoming enemy attacks. Both sides suffer their highest casualties thus far. German aircraft attack Kenley and Biggin Hill airfields in southern England [1,2,10,82]

 


Canada and the U.S. agree to establish a joint defense board [11]


The German-American Bund (pro-Nazi) and Ku Klux Klan hold an anti-war rally for 1000 at Camp Nordland, New Jersey, while 1000 protest against the Bund and Klan outside [1]

  August 19  Italians occupy Berbera, capital of British Somaliland, and Mussolini annexes British Somaliland to Italian Empire, the only Italian victory achieved in WWII without German assistance [1,2]

 


The North American B-25 Mitchell took its maiden flight. By the end of its production, nearly 10,000 B-25s in numerous models had been built. The  medium bomber was an important piece in the Allies’ arsenal through the end of the war [1]

  August 20 Minesweeping trawler HMT RESPARKO is bombed and sunk in the River Fal at Falmouth by German aircraft. All crew are rescued.  [62]

 


Winston Churchill praises the RAF to the House of Commons—“Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.” [1,2]


Churchill announces a readiness to cede bases to the U.S [11]


Germans withdraw Ju 87 Stuka dive bombers from combat over Britain after heavy losses. [1]

  August 21  
  August 22 SS Thorold (Quebec & Ontario Transportation Ltd)(ex-SS Chicago Tribune) bombed/sunk by German aircraft, Irish Sea off Milford Haven, 10 killed. The Great Lakes ship had been pressed into ocean service during WWII. [61]

 


First cross-Channel artillery duel—Germans bombard Dover. German long-range guns also shell convoys. The British reply with their guns. First air raid on metropolitan London [1,11]

  August 23 James Lacey is awarded the Distinguished Flying Medal [2]
  August 24 Sgt Antoni Glowacki shoots down three Bf 109s and two Ju 88 bombers. He is the only Pole to shoot down five aircraft on one day, a feat that earns him the title of One-day Ace.

 


German bombers mistakenly bomb civilian facilities in London [1,2]


Deadlock in Hungarian-Rumanian negotiations on Transylvania [11]


Medical journal Lancet publishes the first study by Howard Florey and Ernest Chain about penicillin [1]


The USS Constitution is named the symbolic flagship of the US Fleet at Boston, MA [1]


Edward R. Murrow and several other CBS reporters broadcast “London after Dark” live from multiple locations throughout the city as air raid begins. [1]


The third phase of the Battle of Britain begins: Luftwaffe begins the intense bombing of RAF fields, supplies, and plants. [1]

  August 25 The Admiralty issues a warning that Germany is about to introduce an acoustic mine into its mining orbat [62]

 


Czech pilot Manfred Czernin flying with the RAF shoots down 3 Bf 110 fighters in 1 minute over Britain [2]


RAF begins the night-time bombing of Berlin, in response to (accidental) Luftwaffe bombing of London the night before. [1,11]

  August 26 Ireland (neutral) protests accidental German bombing of County Wexford [1]

 


The first Canadian fighter pilot in an RCAF squadron is killed in combat in the Battle of Britain. [1]

  August 27

Keitel reveals an invasion plan for UK that features 4 separate landing sites [2]


Free French troops under Philippe de Hauteclocque (who has adopted the name Leclerc to protect his family in France), take Duala, French Cameroon. French Cameroon switches allegiance from Vichy France to Free French [1]


President Roosevelt authorizes call into service of Army Reserve and National Guard for 12 months. [1]

  August 28  
  August 29

No. 312 (Czechoslovak) Squadron is formed. Most are escaped Czechoslovak pilots although it is initially led by a British RAF squadron leader. They fly Hawker Hurricanes until October 1941. [60]


German bombers attack Portsmouth, England overnight [2]


Vienna conference on Transylvania question [11]


First mass jump by US paratroopers, at Fort Benning, GA [1]

  August 30  
  August 31

Ludwig Paszkiewicz brakes the rules and shoots down a German fighter during a training flight. The legendary Polish 303 Squadron scores its first victory!. The next day the unit achieves its combat readiness. [1,55]


8,000 British and French troops depart from Britain for West Africa [2]


The RAF’s worst day in the Battle of Britain: most bases are out of action and Fighter Command suffers its highest losses (41 aircraft). [1]

  September 1  
  September 2 “Destroyers for Bases”: Roosevelt & Churchill agree to trade 50 old US destroyers for 99-yr leases on British bases in Western Hemisphere [1,2]

He Yingqin orders Nationalist 18th Army to counter Communist advance along Yangtze [2]

September 3

Vojtech Tuka convinces the Slovak assembly to enact Constitutional Law 210 [2]

  September 4

Speech by Hitler asserting readiness for long war, threatens retaliation for bombing of German cities, promising invasion of Britain. He vows to eradicate British cities [1,11]


General Antonescu becomes premier of Rumania with plenary powers [11]


The commander at the RAF field at Biggin Hill blows up his own hangars to stop Luftwaffe raids [1]


America First Committee, an isolationist group dedicated to keeping the US out of WWII, is established in Chicago, originating with Yale students. [1]

Japanese troops enter French Indochina without permission; Vichy France suspends talks [1,2]

September 5

King Carol II of Romania is forced to give powers to fascist Gen. Ion Antonescu. Rioting by fascists in Romania destroys Jewish businesses [1]


Bomber Command sends 85 aircraft over Berlin overnight on 5/6 Sep 1940, a move sure to further infuriate Hitler.  [94]

  September 6 The Luftwaffe increases the pressure on the RAF in the shape of three main attacks. Losses were high on both sides, but especially No. 303 (Polish) Squadron took heavy losses. German ace Adolf Galland shot down his 30th victim, a Hawker Hurricane. [60]

 


German raids against the Hawker facility at Brooklands are repelled, as are several waves of attacks against Fighter Command’s airfields. Britain suffers minor damage from German bombers. [2,94]

 


Over the coming night German minelayers TOGO (ex Norwegian vessel OTRA – pic) , KAISER and torpedo boats GREIF (2nd pic) FALKE, ILTIS, and JAGUAR of the 5th Flotilla lay a minefield in the southwest North Sea. [62]

 


Caorl of Rumania abdicates to his eighteen-year-old son, Michael, and he flees the next day. Antonescu declares for full cooperation with Axis [1, 11]

 


German Adm. Erich Raeder permits greater warfare on Allied convoys, scrapping previous restrictions, but still honors the Pan-American Neutrality Zone [1]
  September 7 Vichy French rations coffee

 


The Luftwaffe’s focus switched to London & attacks on fighter airfields eased. The “Blitz” began. London was systematically bombed by the Luftwaffe for 56 out of the following 57 days and nights. Fighter Command was hard pressed by large-scale, round-the-clock German attacks which started with raids against the docks of East London, using large formations of bombers with single and twin-engined fighter escorts. Civilian bombing right across the United Kingdom became one of the defining experiences of Home Front Britain during WW2. The 337 tons of bombs dropped throughout the day killed 448 civilians. [1, 2, 13, 30, 60, 67, 97, 100, 101]


P/O Bunny Currant flies ⁦Hurricane R4118⁩ to ⁦Croydon Airport⁩ where she and 605 Sqn would be based for the remainder of the Battle of Britain.  From there, she flew 49 sorties, destroying or damaging 5 enemy aircraft. [98]


The first use of the ‘Big Wing’ tactic occurs. This sees the Duxford Wing, which consists of Nos. 242, 312 and 19 Squadrons sent to patrol RAF North Weald. [9]


Germans extend Nuremberg Laws to Luxembourg; Jews lose citizenship and can’t marry Gentiles [1]


In Britain, the “invasion imminent” alarm is sounded—church bells are rung, bridges are blown, and mines are laid [1]

  September 8

Goering announces that he has taken personal direction of air attack on England [11]


In a Luftwaffe raid on London, a direct hit on the air-raid shelter at Peabody Estate Whitechapel kills 78; St. Thomas’s hospital is hit and 5 nurses are killed [1]

  September 9

Rudolfo Graziani orders troops in Libya to march toward British positions in Egypt [2]


RAF bombs Berlin in the first of 57 nights of bombing [1]


Imperial War Museum in London closes due to bomb damage [1]


Hermann Göring, head of the Luftwaffe, orders the destruction of London and abandons attacks on RAF airfields [1]


The first NA-73X Mustang (prototype for P-51) comes off the assembly line at North American Aviation in Inglewood, CA, 127 days after the initial sketch. [1]

  September 10

The CAI or Corpo Aereo Italiano is formed. A part of the Italian Royal Air Force, the CAI was involved in the Battle of Britain and the Blitz as Mussolini wanted to help support  Italy’s German allies


Italian troops cross the Libyan-Egyptian border. [2]


In a London bombing raid, the Luftwaffe hits Victoria Station and Buckingham Palace [1]

  September 11  
  September 12 The Italian 10th Army advances slowly toward the Libyan-Egyptian border [2, 11]

 


The Nazis confine 500,000 Jews in the Warsaw ghetto [1]

  September 13 The Italian 1st Blackshirt Division captures Fort Capuzzo in Libya [2]

 


Bombs fall on Buckingham Palace, Downing Street, House of Lords [11]

  September 14 Adolf Hitler postpones Operation Sea Lion once again, this time to 17 Sep 1940. His last chance for favourable tides would be the 21st. In the meantime Bomber Command, Coastal Command and the Fleet Air Arm were bombarding the German invasion barges in their ports
 [2, 94]

 


The French liner FLANDRE, requisitioned by Germany, is sunk by a magnetic mine whilst exiting the Gironde [62]


Italians occupy Sollum [11]

Japanese bombers attack Chongqing, China [2] September 15

The Luftwaffe launches its largest and most concentrated attack against London in the hope of drawing out the RAF into a battle of annihilation. Around 1,500 aircraft took part in the air battles which lasted until dusk. 14 of THE FEW were killed. [67]

  September 16 The Italian 1st Blackshirt Division captures Sidi Barrani, Egypt [2]

 


First flight of Lockheed YP-38 Lightning fighter plane, in Burbank, CA. [1]


President Roosevelt signs the Selective Service Training and Service Act: men aged 20-36 are required to register for the draft, the first peacetime draft in US history [1]

  September 17

During attacks on the port of Benghazi, six Fairey Swordfish aircraft from 819 Squadron (HMS ILLUSTRIOUS) lay mines off the harbour. Italian destroyer AQUILONE falls victim to these mines [62]


Operation Sea Lion (Nazi plan to invade Britain) is postponed indefinitely after the RAF denies the Luftwaffe air superiority during the Battle of Britain. [18, 49]


Spitfires turn back Ju 88 bombers over Bristol, England [2]

  September 18  
  September 19 The first of the ‘Eagle Squadrons’, No. 71 Squadron, was formed. The aircrew was predominantly drawn from United States citizens enrolled in the RAF [60]

 


HMS SOMALI destroys 5 stray British mines by rifle fire off the E coast of Scotland, whilst HMS TEVIOTBANK extends the minefields laid previously off the Faroes [62]


Ribbentrop in Rome for conference with Mussolini and Ciano [11]


Secret Polish Army (TAP) leader Witold Pilecki voluntarily has himself sent to Auschwitz so he can report on activities and organize resistance in the camp; he escapes in 1943 [1]


In a raid on London, the Luftwaffe first uses parachute mines with timed fuses. [1]

Jean Decoux allows Japanese forces to enter Haiphong harbor, French Indochina [2]

September 20

U-48 sinks Children’s Overseas Reception Board ship SS City of Benares bound for Canada (260 killed, including 77 of 90 children) [1, 11]


US correspondent Edward R. Murrow makes his first live radio broadcast for CBS from London rooftops [1]


In Britain, the patent is filed for the Morrison indoor air raid shelter. [1]

  September 21 The UK government sanctions the use of Tube stations as air raid shelters [2]

 


British Museum artifacts, including the Elgin Marbles, are hidden in the Aldwych tube station. [1]

  September 22  
  September 23 British and Free French forces clash with Vichy French forces at Dakar [1, 2, 11]

 


The design for the jeep is submitted to the US Army by Bantam, originally called the Pilot [1]

Japanese troops occupy Lang Son, Indochina [2] September 24

Vichy governor of Dakar, French West Africa refuses to surrender to Free French and British; French West Africa will stay loyal to Vichy until November 1942 [1]


French coastal artillery at Dakar scored four hits on HMS Barham [2]


French bombers attack the British base at Gibraltar in retaliation for the British attack on the French Fleet at Mers-el-Kébir [1, 11]


Under the Lend/Lease agreement, six USN destroyers are transferred to Canada as Town class destroyers. HMCShips ANNAPOLIS, COLUMBIA, NIAGARA, ST CLAIR, ST CROIX & ST FRANCIS are commissioned into the RCN at Halifax. [61]


King George of England institutes the George Cross and George Medal for civilian valor. [1]

France surrenders Indochina to Japan, but fighting continues. Nouméa, New Caledonia sides with the Free French [1, 2] September 25

HMCS Prince Robert intercepts and captures German passenger freighter Weser off Mexico. This is the first ship taken as a prize by RCN forces in WWII & is renamed MS Vancouver Island, enters service with the Canadian Government Merchant Marine [61]


In Norway, Nazis ban the constitution and depose the king, and Reichskommissar Josef Terboven is installed as head of government [1]

Due to Japanese occupation of French Indochina, US extends embargo to ban export of all scrap iron and steel to Japan [1]

September 26  
The Tripartite Pact signed

 


September 27

Italy, Japan and Nazi Germany sign the Tripartite Pact. The signatories declare that the ultimate objective of their alliance is “world peace.” The pact authorised mutual assistance should any of the signatories suffer attack by nations not yet involved in the war. [1, 2, 4, 11, 35]


Germans begin census of Jews in occupied France, conducted by French police; Jews must register with police by Oct. 20 and Jewish-owned shops must post yellow “Entreprise Juive” signs by Oct. 31. [1]

  September 27  
  September 28

Uruguay cracks down on Nazi infiltrators and expels 13 German spies. [1]


First of 50 WWI-era US destroyers traded to Britain arrives in the UK. [1]


Britain renews call to evacuate mothers and children from London (489,000 will be evacuated by October 17) [1]

  September 29  
  September 30  

Uranium from the Belgian Congo arrives at Staten Island, NY, for safekeeping; it will be used in the Manhattan Project [1]

October 1

German submarine U-32 sinks Dutch ship Haulerwijk 400 miles west of Ireland [2]

  October 2 Hitler orders the Polish gentry to be exterminated [2]

 


Due to U-boat danger, UK suspends Children’s Overseas Reception Board, which had evacuated children to Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and the US—but private evacuations continue. [1]

  October 3

Vichy France passes its first antisemitic law (applies to all France)—defines Jewishness, bans Jews from the military, from working in the press, entertainment, civil service, and as professors [1, 2]


Former British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain resigns from Parliament due to poor health. Bevin and Wood admitted to War Cabinet [1, 11]


Jews in Warsaw, Poland are instructed by the Germans to move into the Warsaw ghetto, during World War II [116]

  October 4  

US Navy and US Marine Corps place reserve divisions and aviation squadrons on call for active duty. [1]

October 5

French police conduct mass arrests of communists in Paris [1]

  October 6  
  October 7  

American citizens in Far East advised by State Department to come home [11]

October 8

British Mediterranean Fleet departs Alexandria, Egypt to escort a supply convoy to Malta [2]


RAF forms Eagle Squadrons for volunteer American fighter pilots [1]


First Indian Air Force pilots arrive in Britain [1]

  October 9 German troops begin to securing oil fields in Romaniad [2]

 


Winston Churchill becomes the head of the British Conservative Party [2, 116]

  October 10

Hitler starts Führer-Sofortprogram to build air-raid shelters in German cities [1]


The National Gallery in London begins holding lunchtime concerts in the Octagonal Room every weekday for the duration [1]

  October 11  
  October 12 British and Italian warships clash at the Battle of Cape Passero [2]

 


British cruiser Ajax sinks two Italian destroyers, cripple a third which is sunk by cruiser York [11]


SS St. Malo ( ex-French transferred to Canadian Government), torpedoed by U-101 in the mid-Atlantic, south of Iceland while in convoy HX-77, 29 killed. She was one of six merchant ships lost in the convoy. [61]

  October 13  

US passes Nationality Act of 1940, the first attempt to codify nationality and naturalization in the US since its founding. [1]

October 14

Luftwaffe bomb falls on Balham Tube station in London, killing 66 [1]

  October 15

Russia denies that she received previous notice of German occupation of Rumania [11]


The Fairey Battle performs its last combat sortie in the UK in the bomber role [9]


Italy demobilizes 300,000 soldiers for the harvest, leaving only 100,000 for the upcoming invasion of Greece [1]


Heavy Luftwaffe raid on London starts 900 fires, with raids also to Birmingham and Bristol [1]

  October 16

SS Trevisa (Canadian Lake Carriers Ltd) torpedoed by U-124 mid-North Atlantic, south of Iceland while in convoy SC-7, seven merchant sailors killed. Pressed into ocean service, this was the first Atlantic Convoy for this Great Lakes merchant ship. [61]


German authorities order the establishment of Warsaw ghettos for Polish Jews [2]

Britain reopens Burma Road [11]

October 17

German Luftwaffe mount four raids against southern England during daylight hours [2]


Clash between German and British destroyers off Brest [11]


In North Atlantic convoy SC-7, U-boats sink three Allied ships; 20 of 30 ships in the convoy will be lost in three days [1]

  October 18

German submarines attack Allied convoy SC-7 all day, sinking 2 ships [2]


Nazis announce death penalty for civilians in France, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Norway who harbor downed British airmen [1]

  October 19

Returning from a patrol in the Dover Straits, destroyer HMS VENETIA is mined & sunk off Margate with the loss of 34 crew including the CO. Mines in the Thames Estuary also claim HM Trawler VELIA & coaster ARIDITY [62]


Italians launch air raid on Bahrein Island [11]


A British Lysander aircraft lands near Montigny, France at night and picks up a British agent, the first of 180 such landings [1]


In 48 hours, U-boats sink 28 ships in various convoys, the worst Allied losses of the war [1]

  October 20  
  October 21

Heavy fog prevents British fighters from taking off to defend London [2]


Italian destroyer lost in attack on Red Sea convoy. [11]

Oct. 21, 1940: Churchill broadcasts on BBC to France: “The morning will come, a glorious dawn. Vive la France!” Appeals to France not to aid Germany. [1, 11]


Conference between Hitler and Laval [11]

  October 22  
  October 23 Adolf Hitler met with Francisco Franco on the Franco-Spanish border at Hendaye

 

 but fails to convince him to lead Spain into the war. Hitler thought that Franco’s territorial and supply demands were too great and the talks end after seven hours. [1, 2, 11, 116]

  October 24

The Italian Air Corps sees its first action during the Battle of Britain during World War II [116]


RAF night raids on Berlin and Hamburg inflict serious civilian casualties for the first time [1]

British Summer Time is extended year-round [1]

Hitler meets with Marshal Philippe Pétain, Head of the French State, in Montoire, and Pétain agrees to Vichy French collaboration with Germany [1, 77]

  October 25 16 Italian BR20M bombers attack Felixstowe and Harwich in Britain [2]

 


The first flight of the North American P-51 Mustang! [124]

Japanese aircraft raid the CAMCO factory at Loiwing (Leiyun), China [2]

October 26

Mines claim British tanker DOSINIA (sunk) and Swedish tanker PEGASUS (damaged) off Liverpool, whilst Norwegian tanker STROMBUS – formerly a whale factory ship – is sunk on a mine in the Bristol Channel off Swansea [62]

  October 27  
  October 28

Greek leader Ioannis Metaxas rejects the Italian ultimatum [2]


Italians invade Greece from Albania [1]


Off Ireland, German U-boat U-32 sinks British troopship Empress of Britain, the largest U-boat victim of the war at 42,000 tons (45/623 killed). [1]

  October 29  
  October 30

British naval detachments land on Crete [11]


In presidential campaign speech in Boston, President Roosevelt promises, “Your boys are not going to be sent into any foreign wars.” [1]


In a radio broadcast to France, Head of the French State Marshal Philippe Pétain advocates collaboration with Germany. [1]


RAF Bomber Command directive shifts focus of bombing to industrial targets in highly populated areas, a step closer to area bombing. [1]


Germans begin collecting art looted from Jewish homes and from the Louvre and other museums at the Jeu de Paume in Paris [1]

  October 31 British forces land on the islands of Lemnos and Crete in southern Greece [2]

 


Official end of Battle of Britain, although air raids continue. Losses so far—RAF: 828 aircraft & 1007 men; Luftwaffe: 1733 aircraft & 3893 men; British civilians: 40,000. [1]


Antibiotic sulfaguanidine is introduced as a cure for bacterial dysentery. [1]

Chuichi Nagumo is named the commandant of the Japanese naval war college [2]

November 1 Battle of Britain air war ends

 


Greek troops trap a large Italian force at the mountain pass at Metsovo, Greece [2]


Minesweeping Trawler HMT TILBURYNESS is sunk by German bombing in the Thames Estuary. 10 crew are killed, survivors being rescued by AA Trawler ROYAL EAGLE (which shoots down 1 a/c) and tug SALVO. In the Dover Straits, German mines claim steamer HUNDVAAG [62]

  November 2

Off Ireland, British destroyer Antelope sinks U-31, the only German submarine sunk twice in the war (originally sunk March 11, 1940 and raised). Unsuccessful attempts were made to board her shortly before she sank. Forty-three of the forty-five members of the complement were rescued, two Petty Officers being the only casualties. [1, 125]


Italian aircraft bomb Piraeus, Greece, burning port and killing 300 [1]


Italian troops reach the main Greek defensive line on the Kalamas River [2]
  November 3

Bad weather brings the first night of no London air raids after 57 straight nights of Luftwaffe bombing [1]


Greeks defeat Italians in the Pindus Mountains [1]

  November 4

Italian troops establish a weak bridgehead across the Kalamas River in Greece. [2]


Spain takes full control in Tangier. [11]

  November 5

U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt becomes the first and only president to win a third term, as he beats Republican Wendell Willkie 27 million votes to 22 million in the closest vote in 25 years in the largest turnout in US history. Roosevelt would win a fourth term as well. [1,116]


SS Beaverford (Canadian Pacific Steamships) sunk by ADMIRAL SCHEER while in convoy HX-84 in the North Atlantic. Beaverford in a heroic effort, engaged the German pocket battleship after HMS JERVIS BAY had been sunk. heroism of merchant cruiser Jervis Bay saves 34 out of 38. [1, 11, 61]

  November 6

HMCS OTTAWA (1st) shares in sinking Italian submarine Faa di Bruno in the N. Atlantic. Credit for attack not given until re-assessment in the 1980’s. First enemy vessel to be sunk in the history of the @RoyalCanNavy & 1st submarine sunk by RCN during WWII. [61]


Greek 2nd Army Corps mounts another attack on the enveloped Italian Julia Division [2]

Large freighter CAMBRIDGE is mined & sunk in the Bass Strait en route from Melbourne to Sydney. 1 crewman dies after returning to his cabin to save £30 won at the Melbourne Cup. Minesweepers are sent to respond [62]

November 7

Free French troops land near Libreville, Gabon, in Vichy French-held French Equatorial Africa [1]

  November 8 Free French and Vichy French troops clash near Libreville, French Equitorial Africa [2]
  November 9

Conservative British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain dies of bowel cancer at the age of 71 in Hampshire, England. He had resigned as Prime Minister on May 10 [1, 2, 116]


Germans start expelling 180,000 French from Alsace-Lorraine in violation of the armistice with France [1]

  November 10 Occupying Nazi authorities in Belgium ban the observance of Armistice Day
  November 11 British Aircraft from  carriers Illustrious & Eagle attack the Italian fleet anchored at Taranto, Italy with aircraft. Half of the Italian Fleet’s capital ships were put out of action. This was the first all-aircraft ship-to-ship naval attack in history. [1]

 


First jeep is delivered to the US Army [1]


On Armistice Day, several thousand Parisians march on the Champs Élysées in the first illegal demonstration during the occupation; 123 students & veterans are arrested [1]

  November 12 Vichy French forces in Gabon surrender to the Free French [2]

 


Molotoff arrives in Berlin for 3-day conference with Hitler [11]

  November 13

Ribbentrop fails to convince Molotov to form a Germany-Italy-Japan-USSR alliance [2]

  November 14 Greek troops began to cross the Albanian border [2]

 


Luftwaffe bombers destroy Coventry, England, including the 14th-century cathedral, in operation Mondlicht Sonate (Moonlight Sonata); 568 killed. [1]

  November 15 The Warsaw Ghetto is sealed. 400,000 people are segregated from the rest of the population and incarcerated behind a wall. Living conditions inside the ghetto are extremely poor, with limited sanitation, medicine & space. [49]

 


A heavy British air raid on Hamburg, Germany causes extensive damage [2]

  November 16

Heinz Guderian is named commander of Panzer Group 2 [2]

  November 17

 In Germany, Jews are banned from using the same air raid shelters as Aryans.  [1]


Correspondent Ralph Barnes of the New York Herald Tribune is killed in an RAF plane crash in Yugoslavia, the first US war correspondent to die in WWII [1]

  November 18

First time a U-boat is located by airborne radar—by an RAF Sunderland flying boat [1]


Greeks force Italians back into Albania in the first Axis land defeat of the war. [1]

  November 19

The Air Cadet League of Canada is established. The league’s initial goal was to train teenage boys for possible future employment in the @RCAF_ARC. Its goal today is to promote Canadian youths’ interest in aviation, leadership, and citizenship. [31]


Luftwaffe bombs Birmingham, spreading the Blitz to industrial targets in the British Midlands. [1]

  November 20 Hungarian Prime Minister Teleki signs the Tripartite Pact in Vienna [2

 


Australian minesweeping trawler HMAS GOORANGAI is lost in a collision off Port Phillip with British troopship DUNTROON. She had been clearing mines laid in Bass Strait. The entire crew are lost in the RAN’s first ship loss of WW2 [62]

  November 21

Greek troops defeat the Italian IX Army and captured Koritza, Albania [2]

  November 22

Italian 9th Army is defeated in Greece [2]


Greeks take Koritza. Turks declare martial law in Thrace. Heavy raid on Birmingham [11]


Luftwaffe’s heaviest raid on Birmingham, England—the 11-hour raid causes 600 fires. [1]


In Delft, the Netherlands, 500 students demonstrate against the Nazis after Jewish professors are dismissed. [1]

Japanese 11th Army begins to prepare for an offensive in Hubei Province, China [2]

November 23

HMCS SKEENA rescues five survivors from SS Bruse (Norway), torpedoed by U-100 while in convoy SC-11. Sixteen Merchant Sailors were killed. [61]


Romania joins the Tripartite Pact, joining the Axis powers of Germany, Italy, Japan, and Hungary during WWII. It was pro-British and allied with Poland but found itself isolated after Poland, France and the Low Countries were defeated [1, 11, 116]


Adm. William Leahy is appointed US ambassador to Vichy France [1]

The Japanese 11th Army launches an offensive in Hubei Province, China [2] November 24 Winston Churchill sends a secret telegram to US President Roosevelt: “Spain is near starvation point”, advises the USA “dole out food” to keep Franco out of war & German hands off the Straits of Gibraltar

 


The First Slovak Republic becomes the sixth member of the Tripartite Pact, officially joining the Axis powers of Germany, Italy, Japan, Hungary and Romania during World War II [116]

First flight of the de Havilland DH.98 Mosquito, E0234/W4050, British multi-role twin engine combat aircraft originally conceived as unarmed fast bomber. Piloted by Geoffrey de Havilland Jr., accompanied by John E. Walker, Chief Engine Installation Designer. [8]


The Japanese 11th Army launches an offensive in Hubei Province, China

November 25

First flight of the Martin B-26 Marauder (B-26-MA 40-1361) at Middle River, Maryland. American twin-engine medium bomber. Glenn L. Martin Company’s test pilot William K. (“Ken”) Ebel, co-pilot Ed Fenimore and flight engineer Al Malewski. [8]

  November 26  
  November 27 British and Italian naval forces engage in the Battle of Spartivento [2]
  November 28  
  November 29  
In Hubei, China, Chinese troops halted Japanese 11th Army offensive [2] November 30  
The F4F-3 Wildcat fighter enters service with the US Navy [2] December 4  
  December 5 Hitler proposes a timetable for the invasion of the USSR in May of the following year [2]
Japanese and British troops clash at the airfield at Kota Bharu, British Malaya [2] December 9 British and Indian trops capture Nibeiwa, Egypt [2]

 


Allied forces launch Operation Compass in North Africa, the first large military operation of the Western Desert Campaign. British troops advance against a larger Italian force at Sidi Barrani, and take three forts. The British took over 138,000 Italian and Libyan prisoners, hundreds of tanks, guns and aircraft. [1]


British and Indian trops captured Nibeiwa, Egypt

  December 10 British troops take Sidi Barrani and push Italians out of Egypt [1, 11]

 


Libyan 1st Division withdraws from Maktila, Egypt [2]
  December 11 Battleship HMS King George V is commissioned [1]

 


The British 7th Armored Brigade attacks Buq Buq, Egypt [2]
  December 12 The British 7th Armored Brigade moves to cut the road into Bardia, Libya [2]

 


Britain begins “Potato Pete” potato promotion drive and begins opening government-run fish & chips shops. [1]

  December 13

Pétain forces Vichy French prime minister Pierre Laval to resign, then has him arrested (he’s released two days later and will return to power in April 1942). [1]

  December 14

Plutonium-238 is first produced and isolated at the University of California, Berkeley, but not identified until February 1941 [1]


Australian troops relieve Indian troops in Egypt; Indian troops are sent to the Sudan. [1]

  December 15  
  December 16

The British 4th Armoured Brigade captures Sidi Omar, Egypt [2]


SS Bic Island (Canadian Government) damaged by bombs from German aircraft in the North Atlantic. Originally Italian passenger/freighter Cape Noli, captured by HMCS BRAS D’OR on 10 June 1940 and renamed Bic Island. [61]


RAF conducts first deliberate area bombing, to Mannheim, Germany [1]

  December 17

President Roosevelt proposes the Lend-Lease Plan to aid Britain, saying that if your neighbor’s house is on fire, you lend him a garden hose.  [1]


US establishes Civilian Public Service camps for conscientious objectors [1]


The American Eagle Club is established in London for servicemen; it will later be taken over by the American Red Cross. [1]

Maiden flight of Curtiss SB2C Helldiver (US Navy scout-bomber). [1]

December 18

Hitler authorizes Operation Barbarossa, the invasion of the Soviet Union by signing Directive 21. The German High Command began planning for July 1940 under the codename Operation Otto, but the invasion began on June 22, 1941. [116]

  December 19

Ten thousand civilians evacuated from Malta arrive in Britain [1]


Kyösti Kallio, President of Finland, dies at his own resignation ceremony; replaced by Risto Ryti. [1]

  December 20

Soviet military officially adopts the PPSh-41 submachine gun [2]


Two RAF Spitfires strafe Breck and Le Touquet, France, in first RAF “Rhubarb” daytime offensive fighter operation [1]

  December 21  
  December 22  
  December 23

Destroyer HMS HYPERION strikes a mine in the Med off Pantelleria, east of Cape Bon in the Strait of Sicily & is badly damaged. She is taken in tow by HMS ILEX but has to be scuttled. Two crew lost [62]


Greeks push back Italians another 20 miles up the Ionian coast in Albania [2]


First Parisian civilian is executed by the Nazis—23 year-old engineer Jacques Bonsergent, accused of punching a German soldier in a brawl [1]


Churchill appoints Anthony Eden as British Foreign Secretary [1]

  December 24

US refuses to admit Jewish refugees, believing it will lead to expulsion of all Jews from Europe [1]


Bonus Christmas ration is distributed in Germany—26 ounces of rice & vegetables, 1 pound of sugar, coffee, and jam [1]

  December 25

Martlet fighters shoot down a Ju 88; first victory of US-built aircraft in Britain [2]

  December 26

HMAS Waterhen captures Italian schooner Tireremo Diritto in Mediterranean Sea [2]

  December 27

Cargo vessel ARABY & coaster KINNAIRD HEAD are mined & sunk in the Thames Estuary, each with the loss of 6 crew. The latter was the latest victim of an aerial minelay which eventually claimed 16 ships off Sheerness [62]


Carrier Zuiho is commissioned into service [2]

  December 28 Mussolini requested German aid against the Greeks in Albania [2]
  December 29  
  December 30  
  December 31 RAF bombers attack the bridge over the Rhine River at Emmerich, Germany [2]
1941
  January 1

Nazis require all radios in the Netherlands to be registered and taxed [1]


BBC first broadcasts “The Brains Trust” radio program [1]


At urging of the BBC, many French stay indoors from 3-4 pm in a silent act of resistance against the Germans [1]

  January 2

The Andrews Sisters record “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy.” [1]


President Roosevelt announces plan to build Liberty Ships, cargo ships designed to be produced quickly and efficiently. [1]

  January 3

6th Australian Division, supported by 24 tanks of 7 RTR, begin their attack into Bardia, Libya. Sappers blow gaps in the wire, the Australians secure a bridgehead across the ditch with crossing places for tanks; and nearly 100 mines are removed. [1, 2, 99]


After suffering heavy losses, the Italian Air Force withdraws its aircraft from supporting the German Luftwaffe in the Battle of Britain [1]

  January 4 Allied troops reach Bardia, Libya
  January 5  
  January 6 Free French troops attack Murzuk airfield in southwestern Libya [2]

 


FDR uses his State of the Union address to blast the world’s dictatorships and their “new order of tyranny.” Roosevelt also lays out his vision of “four freedoms” for all peoples: freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from want and freedom from fear. [1, 4]

  January 7 Australian and British troops nearly surrounded at Tobruk, Libya [2]

 


British occupy airport of El Adem outside Tobruk. [11]

The Royal Thai Air Force aircraft attack French positions at Cambodia [2] January 8 The Australian 6th Division begins reconnaissance patrols around Tobruk, Libya [2]
  January 9 Australians and British troops encircle Tobruk, Libya [2]

 


A prototype of the Avro Lancaster Bomber, Britain’s predominant bomber aircraft during World War Two (1939-1945), flew for the first time. Lancasters entered service the following year. 7377 were ultimately built, but only 17 survive and only two of those are airworthy. [9, 18, 139, 140]

Thailand invades French Indochina (under Vichy control). [1]

January 10 Greek troops capture Klisura Pass in Albania [2]

 


Heavy attack by dive-bombers on British convoy in Sicilian channel results in loss of Southampton and damage to Illustrious [11]

  January 11 Italian troops fail to retake Klisura Pass in Albania [2]
Japanese invaders of Hong Kong taking no prisoners – they roped together 20 British medical staff who surrendered, & bayoneted them to death [16, 20] January 12

British armored divisions rush repairs of tanks for the upcoming attack on Tobruk [2]


A communist “People’s Convention” is held in London (since the USSR is allied with Germany at this time, British communists oppose the war effort). [1]

  January 13

German bombers drop 106 high explosive bombs on Plymouth, England [2]


General Cavallero succeeds General Soddu as commander of Italian forces in Albania [11]

  January 14

Alexandros Papagos rejects the inadequate British military offer. [2]


Off Antarctica, German auxiliary cruiser Pinguin captures 14 Norwegian whaling ships without firing a single shot or causing a single casualty [1]


“V for Victory” is suggested by former Belgian Minister of Justice Victor de Lavelaye, in a BBC broadcast from London to Nazi-occupied Belgium, Holland, and France. [1]

French Groupe Occasionnel squadron moves toward Thai-Cambodian border [2] January 15

Norwegian ship BRASK was torpedoed and sank in 3 minutes, 20 survivors in 1 lifeboat spotted another  ship…boarded the Greek ship NEMEA, which had also been torpedoed and abandoned, later joined by 18 Greek survivors  [142]


No. 880 Naval Air Squadron is formed, they will be equipped with the Hawker Sea Hurricane. [9]

French troops launch a successful counterattack against Thai troops in Cambodia [2] January 16 80 German Stuka dive bombers attack Valletta Harbor, Malta [2]

 


Minelaying cruiser HMS ADVENTURE, entering Liverpool Bay to commence AA Guardship duties, strikes a mine and is badly damaged. Repairs will last until late June. In the Thames Estuary, minesweeping trawler HMT DESIREE is also mined & sunk [62]


ESSEX was bombed and damaged in Malta Harbour killing 16 and 23 injured….having arrived on the 10th as part of Convoy “Excess”….she was not to leave Malta until August 1943 [142]


Britain forms Women’s Auxiliary Air Force (WAAF) [1]

The Vichy France navy defeats the Thai navy at the Battle of Koh Chang during the Franco-Thai War. [2, 116]

January 17

The German U-boat U-96 sinks British troopship the SS Almeda Star. The ship went down North of Rockall in the North Atlantic Ocean.  [124]

  January 18 Stuka dive bombers attacked Malta for the third consecutive day [2]
Japanese troops land at Sandakan, British North Borneo [2] January 19 Indian troops capture the rail junction Kassala, Sudan [2]
  January 20  
  January 21 The Allies began attacking Tobruk, Libya [2]
  January 22 Registration for the US draft is held in the Territory of Alaska [1]

 


In Libya, Australians take Tobruk—and 25,000 Italian prisoners [1]
  January 23 Noted American aviator Charles Lindbergh appears before Congress to urge the U.S. government to negotiate a non-aggression treaty with Adolf Hitler. [1, 4]

 


Bulgaria passes law that bans Jews from public service, professions, and commerce, and bans marriage between Jews and Gentiles [1]
Thai aircraft bomb an airfield in Cambodia; the final action of Franco-Thai War [2] January 24 All Italian outposts surrounding Tobruk, Libya are captured by the Allies [2]

 


Romanian army crushes the fascist Iron Guard uprising, and the Iron Guard’s leader flees to Germany [1]

 


In Libya British armored forces divide Italian forces at Mechili [1]
  January 25 British colonial troops march into Italian Somaliland [2]
  January 26 Italian troops evacuate Mechili, Libya [2]
  January 27 The troopship Ulster Prince becomes the first Allied ship to dock at newly-captured Tobruk [2]

 


 U.S. ambassador to Japan Joseph Grew wires Washington that Japan is planning a surprise attack on Pearl Harbor; he is not believed. Most senior U.S. military officials believe Japan will attack the Philippines in the event of war. [116]

B-10 medium bombers of the Thai 50th Bomber Sq attack Sisophon, French Cambodia [2] January 28 The British 7th Armoured Division outflanks the Italian artillery overlooking Derna, Libya [2]

 


In the Mediterranean, Greek merchant vessel KATE (5197grt) is sunk on a mine off the Greek coast with 2 crew killed. Meanwhile, submarine HMS RORQUAL lays 29 mines off Sansego Island (modern Croatia) and 21 mines off Ancona, Italy [62]
  January 29 US and Britain begin secret joint discussions in Washington, which will lead to the ABC-1 Plan in case of America entering war against Germany [1, 116]
  January 30 Germany announces any ship bringing goods to Britain will be torpedoed. [1]

 


Australians take Derna, Libya. [1]
An armistice is signed between Thailand and French Indo-China [11] January 31 Free French forces from Chad attack Kufra, Libya [2]

 


‘Smokey Joe’ HMS HUNTLEY is bombed and sunk in the Mediterranean Sea 30 nautical miles (56 km) west of Mersa Matruh, Egypt. 18 crew are killed, including the CO [62]

 


Naval collier BOTUSK & Dutch steamer EMMAPLEIN are sunk in a British minefield off North Rona Is. Corvette HMS VERBENA & cable ship ARIEL help rescue survivors. Further south, Dutch balloon barrage vessel SATURNUS is damaged off the Isle of Man [62}

 


SPEYBANK, captured by the German Raider ATLANTIS and renamed DOGGERBANK…60 crew taken POW…4 died in captivity [142]

Japan begins rice rationing to save shipping space: 330 grams per day [1]


US Marine Corps forms its first divisions, the 1st and 2nd Marine Divisions for the East and West Coasts, respectively [1]

February 1

 Indian 4th Division captures Agordat, Eritrea, Italian East Africa [2]


German heavy cruiser Admiral Hipper leaves Brest, France to raid shipping in North Atlantic for the next 4 months [1]

  February 2 Australian troops advance west from Derna, Libya [2]

US Navy establishes Pacific Fleet under Adm. Husband Kimmel, Atlantic Fleet under Adm. Ernest King, and Asiatic Fleet under Adm. Thomas Hart [1]

February 3

German battlecruisers Scharnhorst and Gneisenau start raids on British shipping in the Atlantic, will sink 22 ships by March 22 [1]

  February 4 The Italians begin evacuating Benghazi, Libya [2]

 

Ocean boarding vessel HMS Crispin (ex Booth Line cargo steamer SS Crispin, requisitioned 1940) sank with the loss of 20 lives off Rockall. She had been hit in the engine room by one torpedo from German submarine U-107 just before midnight on 3 Feb. [137]

  February 5 British 7th Armoured Div set up roadblocks near Benghazi, cutting off the Italian retreat [2]
  February 6  
  February 7  
  February 8 The newly formed German Afrika Korps begins departing Naples, Italy for North Africa [2]
  February 9 Operation Compass ends

 


Allied troops capture El Agheila, Libya [2]

  February 10 222 British aircraft attack Hannover, Germany [2]
  February 11 The first German troops arrive at Tripoli, Libya [2]
  February 12  
  February 13 There are riots in Amsterdam, with rival gangs of Dutch Fascists & Jewish self-defence leagues & other anti-Nazis fighting in the streets

 


The HMS Formidable launches aircraft against Italian ships at Massawa, Italian East Africa


Vichy France temporarily bans the sales of clothes due to severe shortages- northern France, occupied by Germany, is no longer exporting any textiles

  February 14 Hitler pressures Yugoslavia to join the Tripartite Pact [2]
  February 15 General Platt suspended attacks near Keren to organize a larger effort [2]
  February 16  
  February 17 An Italian Auto-Saharan Company detachment counterattacks the French and British near Kufra [2]

 


Off Ireland, U-101 sinks British freighter Gairsoppa (85 killed) carrying 2800 bars of silver to fund the war (110 tons recovered in 2011) [1]

First Australian troops arrive in Singapore. [1]

February 18 Free French forces besiege El Tag fort at Kufra, Libya [2]

 

The South African 1st Division captures Mega, Abyssinia [2]


A meeting is held to discuss the armament of German tanks. Nearly everyone present spoke out against lengthening the 50 mm gun on the Pz.Kpfw.III, but Hitler overruled his advisors and put this tank into production. [22]

  February 19 German bombers begin a 3-day campaign against Swansea, Wales, United Kingdom [2]
  February 20  
  February 21 Albacore aircraft from the HMS Formidable raid Massawa, Eritrea, causing little damage [2]
  February 22 The British 11th and 12th African Divisions wipe out Italian positions at Jilib, Somaliland [2]
  February 23 Greek and British leadership debate on a defensive strategy [2]
  February 24 The British Avro Manchester bomber makes its combat debut in a Royal Air Force Bomber Command night raid on Brest, France

 


First flight of the British Bristol Bisley, British light bomber, Modified Bristol Blenheim which finally became the Blenheim V.

  February 25 The British 11th African Division captures Mogadishu, Italian Somaliland [2[
  February 26 Francisco Franco refuses request from Hitler for Spain to enter the war
  February 27/td> Yosuke Matsuoka arrives in Berlin, Germany [2]
  February 28 German troops enter into Bulgaria
  March 1 Free French forces from Chad capture Kufra in southeastern Libya
  March 3 German 5th Light Division establishes positions to block Allied advance toward Tripoli [2]
  March 4 Hitler offers Yugoslavia Salonika and part of Macedonia [2]
  March 5 British reinforcements from North Africa arrive in Greece [2]
  March 10 The British Nigerian Brigade engages Italian units at Degehabur, Abyssinia [2]
Japan dictates that France return parts of Cambodia and Laos to Thailand [2] March 11  
  March 12 Winston Churchill thanks the US for the Lend-Lease Act [2]
  March 15 The Indian 4th and 5th Divisions attack Italian positions near Keren, Eritrea [2]
  March 16 British and Indian troops capture Fort Dologorodoc, Eritrea [2]
  March 20 Erwin Rommel receives Oak Leaves to his Knights Cross [2]
  March 21 The Nigerian Brigade of British 11th African Division captures Marda Pass, Abyssinia [2]
  March 22 Italian troops declare Harar, Abyssinia an open city [2]
  March 23 Australian troops capture Giarabub in southeastern Libya [2]
  March 25 Yugoslavia signs the Tripartite Pact and secretly allows German troops passage [2]
  March 26 The British Nigerian Brigade captures Harar, Abyssinia unopposed [2]
  March 29 German tanks and armored cars advance at El Agheila, Libya [2]
  March 30 First powered flight of the Heinkel He 280, a German fighter prototype and the first turbojet-powered fighter aircraft in the world

 


US and UK arrange military coordination, to be executed when US would enter the war [2]

  March 31 Axis tanks forced the Allies to fall back to Agedabia, Libya [2]
  April 1 Indian 5th Division enters undefended Asmara, Italian Eritrea [2]
  April 5 Axis forces advanced toward Msus and Mechili in Libya [2]
  April 6 RAF Beaufort aircraft torpedo German battlecruiser Gneisenau at Brest, France [2]
  April 7 Axis forces in Libya reach Derna and Mekili [11
  April 8 German 2nd Panzer Division crosses from Yugoslavia into Greece near Dojran Lake [2]

 


Germans take Skoplje and Salonika [11]

  April 9 237 German bombers attack Birmingham, England, United Kingdom [2]
  April 10 Roosevelt approves transfer of 10 Lake-class Coast Guard Cutters to Royal Navy [2]
  April 11 Italy and Hungary join the German invasion of Yugoslavia [2]

 


The Germans capture Bardia [11]

  April 13 The Soviet Union and Japan signed a 5-year neutrality pact [2,11]
  April 14 Australians report the first sighting of German 88-mm guns in the Western Desert [2]
  April 15 The Luftwaffe drops bombs on Newtownards Airfield, Co. Down killing 13 young soldiers of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers. [32]

 


First serious German air raid on northern Ireland [11]

  April 17 1,179 Londoners die in the overnight German bombing [2]

 


Armistice concluded between Germans and Second Yugoslav Army [11]

  April 18 German 6th Mountain Division reaches Mount Olympus [2]
  April 19 British and Indian troops attacked Amba Alagi, Abyssinia [2]

 


Germans announce capture of Larissa and Mount Olympus [11]

  April 21 Georgios Tsolakoglou signs the surrender of the entire Greek Army to Germany [2]

 


Greek government says further resistance impossible, advises British to withdraw [11]


Germans claim capture of Metsovo Pass [11]

  April 22 1st South African Brigade captures 1200 Italian POWs in Abyssinia [2]
  April 23 German bombers attack Plymouth, England [2]

 


Armistice signed between Greek and German-Italian forces [11]

  April 24 German paratroopers capture the Corinth Canal in Greece [2]

 


Broadcasts by Secretaries Hull and Knox advocate full American aid to Britain [11]

  April 25 The German 8th Panzer Regiment departs Italy in three convoys for North Africa [2]

 


Germans announce their capture of Thermopylae [11]

  April 26 The South African 1st Brigade captures Dessie, Abyssinia

 


German parachute troops seize Corinth [11]

  April 27 Germans occupy Athens. [11]
  April 29 Indian 20th Infantry Brigade arrived at Basra [2]

 


Soviet Union forbids transit of war material through territory [11]

  April 30 6,000 Iraqi troops and 30 guns advance to heights overlooking RAF Habbaniya [2]

 


President Roosevelt orders creation of shipping pool of 2 million tons [11]

  May 1 Iraqi forces demanded RAF Habbaniya to cease operations, threatening with force [2]
  May 2 British and Iraqi troops clashed at RAF Habbaniya and near Baghdad [2,17]
  May 3 Allied and Italian troops engaged in heavy fighting at Amba Alagi, Abyssinia [2]
  May 4 Allied aircraft conducted a raid on Baghdad, Iraq [2]

 


Politburo appoints Joseph Stalin the Chairman of Council of Peoples Commissars [2]

  May 5 3/2nd Punjab Battalion advances towards the Italian stronghold at Amba Alagi, Abyssinia [2]
First flight of the Republic P-47B Thunderbolt prototype May 6 The P47 or “Jug” was used in both theaters

 


Vichy France and Germany sign the Paris Protocol, opening Syria to German troops

  May 6 Vichy France and Germany sign the Paris Protocol, opening Syria to German troops [2]
  May 7 Douglas Bader shoots down a German Bf 109 aircraft and claimed another probable [2]

 


British relieve besieged airport of Habbania in Iraq [11]

  May 8 Indian troops capture Falagi Pass near Amba Alagi, Abyssinia [2]
Tokyo peace treaty officially ends the Franco-Thai War May 9 Soviet Union withdraws recognition from German-occupied states [11]
  May 10 Rudolf Hess lands in Scotland by parachute [11]
  May 11 The first 3 German Luftwaffe aircraft landed at Mosul, Iraq [2]
  May 12 The Soviet Union extends recognition to the rebel government in Iraq [11]
  May 13 The British gunboat HMS Gnat shells the German airfield at Gazala [2]
  May 14 The Vichy cabinet approves Hitler’s terms on collaboration [11]
  May 15 Eden charges that German planes are using Syrian airfields. [11]

 


South African and Indian troops link up at Triangle Hill near Amba Alagi, Abyssinia [2]

  May 16 Vsevolod Merkulov completes deportation planning of intelligentsia of Baltic States [2]
  May 17 Viceroy of Italian East Africa Duke of Aosta surrenders Amba Alagi, Abyssinia [2]

 


Croatian kingdom set up under Italian prince [11]

  May 18  
  May 19 German aircraft attack British airfields on Crete, Greece [2]
  May 20 The Germans initiate their airborne assault on Crete, code named Operation Merkur
  May 21  Stalin is informed of a possible German attack [2]

 


The American steamer Robin Moor is sunk by a German U-boat in the south Atlantic [11]

  May 22 British fighter planes are withdrawn from Crete [11]
  May 23  
  May 24  
  May 25  
  May 26 Battleship Bismarck is heavily damaged by British torpedo bombers [2]
  May 27 Battleship Bismarck sinks with most of her crew [2,11]
  May 28  
  May 29 The German Navy begins to execute its plans for the invasion of the Soviet Union [2]
  May 30 British and Indian forces reach the outskirts of Baghdad, Iraq [2]
  May 31 The mayor of Baghdad surrenders to British Ambassador Sir Kinahan Cornwallis [2]

 


Armistice ends Iraq hostilities [11]

  June 1  
  June 2 Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini meet again at the Brenner Pass on the Italian-Austrian border [2]
  June 3 German bombers attack Hull and Tweedmouth in England [2]
  June 4 British Home Security Situation Report notes 178 killed by bombing in past week [2]
  June 5 Germany announces that 15k POWs were captured at Crete [2]

 


Secretary Hull condemns French collaboration with Nazis [11]

  June 6 Hitler implements the Kommissarbefehl, or Commissar Order [2]

 


Ship requisition law adopted by United States [11]

  June 7 Polish civilians report German troop movements toward the east [2]
  June 8 Commonwealth and Free French forces invade Vichy Syria-Lebanon [2]

 


British and Free French forces invade Syria [11]

  June 9 Australian and British troops clash with the French in Syria-Lebanon [2]
  June 10 Allied troops advanced toward Beirut [2]

 


The British take the Red Sea port of Assab [11]

  June 12 Indian and Free French forces capture Deraa, Syria-Lebanon [2]
  June 14 Croatia became the newest member of the Tripartite Pact [2]

 


President Roosevelt freezes Axis funds in the U.S [11]

  June 15 Operation Battleaxe was launched in Libya [2]

 


British advance in Syria reaches Saida [11]

  June 16 German troops launched limited counterattacks at British positions in Libya [2]

 


U.S. orders closing of German consulates [11]

  June 17 Finland begins to secretly mobilize its military for Operation Silver Fox [2]
  June 18 The German 7th Panzer Div reaches Cherbourg [2]

 


Treaty of friendship between German and Turkey signed [11]

  June 19 USSR orders black-outs in all cities along the border with Germany. [2]

 


Italy and Germany order closing of U.S. consulates [11]


The deportation of Polish civilians from Western Belarus begins June 19-20, 1941 and was interrupted by the German invasion of the USSR on June 22, 1941.  

  June 20  Indian and Free French troops fail to relieve Indian 5th Inf Brgd in Syria-Lebanon [2]

 


Roosevelt’s message to Congress on the sinking of Robin Moor. [11]

  June 21  
  June 22 In Operation Barbarossa Germany attacks Russian forces in Poland beginning the invasion of Russia and opening the Eastern Front. [2]

 


Germany and Italy declare war on Russia.

  June 23 Germans encounter Soviet KV tanks for the first time in Lithuania [2]

 


Germans announce the capture of Brest Litovsk [11]

  June 24 The German Armeegruppe Nord moves into Lithuania. The Germans claim Vilna and Kannas [2,11]
  June 25 Lithuanian militiamen in Kovno massacre 1,500 Jews [2]

 


Finland announces defensive measures against Russia [11]

  June 26 The Germans drive a wide salient toward Minsk [11]
  June 27 German troops capture Bobruisk in Byelorussia and Przemysl in Poland [2]

 


Russians announce further withdrawals in northern Poland.  Hungary declares war on the Soviet Union. [11]

  June 28 German troops capture Minsk, Byelorussia [2]
  June 29 Romanian troops conduct a pogrom against Jews in the town of Jassy, killing 10,000 [2]
  June 30 German troops capture Lvov, Ukraine [2]
  July 1 German 2.Panzergruppe reaches Berezina, Byelorussia [2]
  July 2 Germans and Latvians burn down all synagogues in Riga [2]

 


Axis troops attack towards Vinnitsa and Odessa, Ukraine [2]


Stalin broadcasts call for “scorched earth” policy [11]

  July 3 Bialystok pocket in Poland is eliminated by German troops [2]

 


Germans cross Dvina at Jacobstadt. British in Syria take Palmyra. [11]

  July 4 German troops capture Ostrov in northern Russia [2]

 


German advance at Lepel. Surrender of Italian troops in Galla and Sidamo districts of East Africa [11]

  July 5 German 6th Army brakes through near Lvov, Ukraine [2]

 


Germans claim to have reached upper Dnieper east of Minsk [11]

  July 6 Douglas Bader shoots down a German Bf 109 aircraft [2]

 


Nine Italian generals surrender in Ethiopia [11]

  July 7  
  July 8  
  July 9  
  July 10 The Finnish Army begins an attack on both sides of Lake Ladoga north of Leningrad [2,11]
  July 11  
  July 12 Douglas Bader shot down a Bf 109 over Pas-de-Calais, France [2]
  July 13  
  July 14 The Armistice of Saint Jean d Acre is signed between France and Britain [2]

 


Katyusha rocket launchers are used in combat for the first time in Russia [2]


Syrian armistice concluded [11]

  July 15 Erwin Rommel is officially declared the commanding officer of Panzergruppe Afrika [2]
  July 16  
  July 17 The German Armeegruppe Sud encircles 20 Soviet Army divisions near Uman, Ukraine [2]

 


Heinz Guderian is awarded Oak Leaves to his Knights Cross [2]

  July 18 Agreement signed between Russia and the Czech government in exile [11]
  July 19 Hitler shifts the 2nd Panzer Group target from Moscow to Kiev. [2]

 


Germans cross the Dniester; take Novograd-Volynsk. [11]

  July 20  
  July 21  
  July 22  
  July 23 The order is given to build 100 ZIS-30 SPGs. These are built from ZIS-2 anti-tank guns on the chassis of a Komsomolets tractor [22]
  July 24 James Lacey gains two Bf 109 kills after his preys crashed into each other [2]

 


Heavy British bombing of battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau in French ports [11]

Britain and the U.S. freeze Japanese funds [11] July 25 The Germans and Soviets engaged in the largest tank battle yet in Ukraine [2]
  July 26 3,800 Lithuanian Jews are killed during a pogrom in Kovno [2]

 


Italian speedboats attempt a raid on Malta. Rumanians claim to have regained old frontiers [11]

Douglas MacArthur is promoted to the rank of lieutenant general [2] July 27 German troops begin crushing the Smolensk pocket in Russia [2]

 


Finland breaks off relations with Britain [11]

  July 28  
  July 29  
The US allows the owner of Tatsuta Maru to withdraw funds to purchase fuel for return to Japan [2] July 30  
  July 31 Antonescu accepts the German request to use Romanian troops to occupy parts of the Ukraine [2]
Grumman TBF Avenger torpedo bomber takes flight for the first time [2] August 1  
  August 2 Two Australian companies attack Italian positions near Tobruk in failure [2]
  August 3  
  August 4 Fedor von Bock calls off an attempt to arrest Adolf Hitler [2]
  August 5 Romanian troops arrive in the vicinity of Odessa, Ukraine [2]
  August 6 The first Bell Airacobra fighter arrives in the United Kingdom [2]

 


Germans announce the conclusion of Smolensk battle with 310,000 prisoners [11]

  August 7 84 British aircraft attack Essen, Germany, dropping 5720 incendiaries [2]

 


The first Russian air raid on Berlin [11]

  August 8 The 6th and 12th Soviet Armies in the Uman Pocket in Ukraine are wiped out by German troops [2]

 


The Germans capture Wesenburg, reach the Gulf of Finland; claim destruction of 25 Russian divisions in encirclement near Uman [11]

  August 9 The Soviet sub ShCh-307 sinks German sub U-144 in the Baltic Sea [2]

 


Germans take Korosten [11]

  August 10 Anglo-Russian pledge to Turkey of respect for integrity and aid against attack. German drive toward Soltsi. [11]

 


Winston Churchill arrives in Newfoundland for the Atlantic Charter Conference with FDR. As Churchill prepares to board USS McDougal, he pauses to pet ‘Blackie’ of HMS Prince of Wales to prevent the cat from crossing the gangway and defecting to the U.S. Navy. [66]

Matome Ugaki is named the chief of staff of the Japanese Navy Combined Fleet [2] August 11  
Battleship No. 1 departs Kure, Japan for trials [2] August 12 A prototype for the HTZ-16 tractor-tank is ready. The USSR is hard-pressed for armored vehicles. This is one of the options for rapidly increasing production [22]

 


British fliers attack Cologne in the biggest daylight raid. Petain pronounces for full collaboration with Germany [11]

  August 13 Stalin releases Polish POWs taken in Sep 1939, ostensibly to form a Soviet-Polish Army [2]

 


The Germans reach Starave Russa [41]

  August 14 Roosevelt and Churchill sign the Atlantic Charter. They issue an eight-point Atlantic charter after conference at sea. [2,11]

 


The US government offers the famous Tommy Gun to the USSR. These guns are enthusiastically received, but their service is marred by the low quality of ammunition that shipped with them [22]

  August 15 Churchill-Roosevelt letter to Stalin suggesting conference on aid [11]
Douglas MacArthur is informed that reinforcements are coming to the Philippines [2] August 16 Anglo-Soviet commercial treaty is signed. Germans launch a drive on Gomel. Anglo-Russian warning to Iran [11]

 


The testing program for the M-75 107 mm gun is approved. This gun has a muzzle velocity of 1150 m/s. It was designed to fight German heavy tanks, but those tanks didn’t come in 1941 as expected [22]

  August 17 German troops captured Narva, Estonia [2]

 


SS Kindersley (ex-SS A.E. McKinstry) damaged by bombs from German aircraft in North Sea, off Blyth. [61]


Assembly of the first T-60 tank prototype begins at factory #37. A T-40 turret without a machine gun was installed for trials. Production tanks used a new turret with a TNSh autocannon [22]


Russians evacuate Nikolaev [11]

  August 18 Germans establish a bridgehead across the Dnieper River at Zaporizhia, Ukraine [2]
  August 19 Germans claim control of Ukraine west of Dnieper [11]

 


German X Corps narrowly averts being encircled near Lake Illmen [2]

  August 20 The Drancy internment camp for foreign Jews in France is established. It would later become the major transit camp for deportations of Jews from France to extermination camps in the East. From 1941-1944, 70,000 prisoners passed through Drancy [49]

 


The German Eleventh Army captures Kherson, Ukraine [2]

The Japanese 41st Infantry Regiment lands at Buna, Papua [2] August 21 Hitler orders Leningrad to be besieged, not captured. [2]

 


Russians reveal withdrawal from Gomel. Germans claim Novgorod, Narva, Kherson. Finns take Kaekisalmi. [11]

  August 22 Russians evacuate Nikopol, launch counter-attack in centre [11]
  August 23 After only 5 months in commission the Flower Class Corvette, HMS ZINNIA is torpedoed and sinks with the loss of all but 17 of her crew.  She was escorting Convoy OG-71 from Liverpool to Gibraltar which had lost the SS Aquila a few days earlier [87]

 


Italians impose military rule on Dalmatian coast [11]


Adolf Hitler rejects Heinz Guderian’s advice to attack Moscow [2]

  August 24 Romanians suffer heavy losses during the Soviet counterattack near Odessa, Ukraine [2]
  August 25 British and Soviet troops invade Iran [2,11]

 


Hitler and Mussolini meet for five-day conference on eastern front. [11]


The chief of the Red Army’s Main Artillery Directorate reports on the successful trials of the PTRS anti-tank rifle. It could penetrate up to 50 mm of armor, making it a potent weapon against German tanks [22]

  August 26  
  August 27 Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammad Ali Foroughi begins peace negotiations with the UK and USSR [2]

 


The Germans slaughter the entire Jewish community in Kamieniec Podolski, incl. both deportees & locals. Within 2 days, a total of 23,600 Jews are massacred in this action. It was one of the 1st large-scale mass murder operations during the Holocaust. [55]

  August 28  
  August 29  
  August 30  
  August 31  
  September 1  
  September 2

Germans reach Krasnoe Selo [11]

  September 3

German and Romanian troops captured the village of Vakarzhany, Ukraine [2]

  September 4

A German submarine attempts to torpedo the American destroyer Greer [11]

  September 5

The B-17E Flying Fortress makes its first flight [9]

Emperor Showa agrees with the proposal for war [2]

September 6

The Messerschmitt Bf109 F-2 of Hauptmann Rolf Pingel, a German ace with 28 victories. It is shot down by a gunner of a Stirling bomber Pingel tries to shoot down [13]

  September 7

German 6.Armee brakes through near Konotop, Ukraine [2]

  September 8

Leningrad becomes completely surrounded [2]


Russians announce recapture of Yelnya in offensive on central front. Germans claim Schluesselburg. [11]

Joseph Rochefort detects new call signs in Akagi communications [2]

September 9

Battle for Convoy SC-42 begins South of Iceland. HMCShips SKEENA, KENOGAMI, ALBERNI, ORILLIA, MOOSE JAW & CHAMBLY, escort 67 merchant ships – attacked by 19 U-boats over 2 days. 16 ships sunk/1 damaged. 203 sailors killed/422 rescued. 2 U-boats sunk/1 damaged [61]


The Slovak government issues a decree on the legal status of Jews, which will lead to the deportation and murder of approximately 70,000 Slovak Jews. [103] 

  September 10

Joining SC-42, HMCShips CHAMBLY & MOOSE JAW attack U 501 with DC’s, forcing sub to surface. MOOSE JAW rams sub & U-Boat skipper steps onto corvette’s foc’s’le. One sailor from CHAMBLY killed after boarding  sinking sub. 1st U-Boat sunk solely by RCN. [61]


HMCShips SKEENA & KENOGAMI, while escorting convoy SC-42, attack & severely damages U-85’s port engine, gyro & magnetic compass, dive planes and all lighting, forcing the U-boat from the battle and to return to France for repairs. [61]


Germans impose martial law on Oslo [11]

  September 11

Ground is broken for the Pentagon. Just prior to America’s entry into #WWII the monumental task of building the Pentagon began. After the attack on Pearl Harbor construction went into overtime and the building was completed in just 16 months. [70]

  September 12

German troops report the first snowfall on the Russian front [2]


Russians announce loss of Chernigov [11]

  September 13

Russians claim repulse of Germans near Briansk [11]


Georgy Zhukov replaces Kliment Voroshilov as commander of Leningrad defenses [2]

  September 14 German Armeegruppe Mitte encircles two full Soviet Armies near Kiev, Ukraine [2]

 


Russians abandon Kremenchug. Axis tank thrust into Libya beaten back [11]

  September 15  
  September 16 Romanian troops capture the heights northwest of Gross-Liebenthal district of Odessa [2]

 


Germans claim victory south of Lake Ilmen. Shooting of 10 hostages in Paris announced [11]

  September 17 German forces kill 1,271 Jews in Vilnius, Lithuania [2]

 


British and Russian troops enter Teheran. Heavy British daylight raid on Bethune area. [11]

  September 18

Hitler rescinds orders to level Leningrad; new orders are to give siege [2]

  September 19 German forces capture Kiev, Ukraine. They advance beyond Poltava.  [2,11]
  September 20

The Mosquito performs its first operational sortie when a sole PR. Mk I performs reconnaissance over Brest, La Pallice and Bordeaux, France [9]


No. 137 Squadron at RAF Charmy Down is formed, they will become the second squadron to be equipped with the Westland Whirlwind [9]

  September 21

Germans claim Sea of Azov reached, Crimea cut off [11]


German Stuka dive bombers sink Soviet battleship Marat at Kronstadt [2]

  September 22  
  September 23

German Stuka dive bombers attack Soviet warships at Kronstadt [2]

  September 24

Conference of Allied governments in London accepts Atlantic charter. Russians claim defeat of German drive on Murmansk [11]

  September 25 Hitler orders Leningrad to be starved into submission [2]

 


Italy re-occupies demilitarized zone in Croatia [11]

  September 26 Soviet troops in Kiev, Ukraine began to run out of supplies [2]
  September 27 23,000 Jews are massacred at Kamenets-Podolsk, Ukraine [2]

 


Germans claim end of encirclement battle eat of Kiev with 665,000 prisoners. Italy announces rationing of bread. [11]

  September 28 The Nazis declare a state of emergency in Bohemia and Moravia, arresting premier [11]
  September 29  
  September 30  
  October 1

King George VI grants the adjective Royal to the navy of New Zealand [2]

  October 2  
  October 3

Hitler speech announcing offensive [11]


German Armeeguppe Mitte captures Orel 220 miles SW of the Soviet capital in Moscow [2]
  October 4

The German troops advance in an attempt to surround Vyasma, Russia [2]

  October 5 Leading German formations reported that they are only about 100 km from Moscow [2]
  October 6 Eight Soviet Armies encircle Bryansk and Vyazma, Russia [2]
  October 7  

Carrier Shokaku arrives at Kure, Japan [2]

October 8  
  October 9 The USSR agrees to purchase 94 Light Tanks M3 from the US. These tanks had good firepower and a high speed, but were very difficult to use in mud and snow due to their smooth rubber tracks [22]
  October 10

General Zhukov takes command of a new Soviet Western Front [2]


Germans claim break-through on 300-mile front before Moscow [11]

  October 11  
  October 12 German 250th Inf Div (Spanish volunteers) is deployed on the River Volkhov at Leningrad [2]
  October 13  
  October 14 All surviving Soviet troops in the Bryansk pocket in Russia are captured [2]

 


Germans reach Mozhaisk. [11]

  October 15

Rumanians announce capture of Odessa [2, 11]

Japanese Prime Minister Fumimaro Konoe submitts his letter of resignation; he is succeeded by General Tojo [2, 11]

October 16  
  October 17

While escorting Convoy SC-48, HMCS PICTOU attacks U-568. U-boat attempts to escape on the surface, PICTOU evades a torpedo fired from U-boat, returning fire with forward gun, drops depth charges when sub dives. U-568 losses contact with the convoy. [61]


USS Kearny, a United States Navy destroyer is torpedoed by a German U-boat, before US entered WW2. It had gone to aid of attacked British convoy near Iceland. Crew confined flooding to forward fire room. 276 crew, 11 killed, 22 injured. Survived attack & served in rest of war. [4, 11, 120] 


SS Reich and 10th Panzer Divs make slow advances along Moscow and Minsk Highways [2]

Hideki Tojo is named 40th Prime Minister of Japan [2]

October 18 The German SS Reich and 10th Panzer Divisions capture Mozhaysk, Russia [2]

 


Red Army reinforcements arrive in Moscow, Russia from Siberia as Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin is assured that the Japanese will not attack the Soviet Union from the East [116]

  October 19 German troops defeat the Soviet forces within the Vyazma pocket in Russia [2]
  October 20  
  October 21

Germans capture Stalino [11]


Australian 9th Division troops continue to be withdrawn out of Tobruk [2]

  October 22

German 4th Panzer Division resumes the attack on Mtsensk, Russia [2]

  October 23

Georgy K. Zhukov, chief of the Soviet general staff, takes command of Red Army during World War II with the Germans just miles from Moscow. He is considered one of the top generals of World War II [116]


3rd Panzer Division of the German Panzergruppe 2 outflanks Soviet troops at Mtensk [2]

  October 24 The German 4th Panzer Division reaches the Chern near Moscow [2]
  October 25

Brigadier Lawson and his Canadian brigade depart Vancouver to reinforce Hong Kong [2]

  October 26  
  October 27  
  October 28

The Soviet Military Collegium evacuate Moscow for Chakalov [2]

  October 29  
  October 30  
  October 31

The American destroyer USS Reuben James is torpedoed by the German submarine U-552 off the coast of Iceland. It had been escorting convoy HX-156. 115 of 160 men lost their lives.  The attack comes five weeks before the Japanese raid on Pearl Harbor. [4, 11, 116]


German dive bombers attack Sevastopol harbor, fail to sink Soviet destroyer Bodry [2]

  November 1  
  November 2  
The Japanese Fleet receives Top-Secret Order No. 1, ordering the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Mayala, the Dutch East Indies, and the Philippines, which would bring the United States into World War II. U.S. Amb. to Japan Joseph Grew sends a report to the State Department warning against the theory that the weakening of Japan from U.S. sanctions, etc would result in it’s collapse. Just more than a month later Japan attacks Pearl Harbor. [116] November 3  
  November 4 German 170th Division captures Feodosiya, Ukraine [2]
U.S. Secretary of State Cordell Hull learns of Japanese decision to go to war [2]

 


Announcement of Kurusu mission to Washington [11]

November 5  
  November 6 Frostbite begins to make its appearance among German troops fighting in USSR [2]
  November 7  
  November 8 Germans capture Tikhvin [11]
  November 9

British destroy two Italian convoys in Mediterranean [11]


Soviet Independent Coastal Army reinforces Sevastopo [2]

  November 10  
  November 11

I-68 joined the Advance Expeditionary Force for the Pearl Harbor attack [2]

  November 12

Frozen mud of cold Russian winter gives German tanks a chance to strike at Moscow [2]


Finland rejects American request for cessation of hostilities with Russia [11]

  November 13 Russian troops attack the Germans at Tikhvin, Russia [2]

 


RoyalNavy aircraft carrier HMS Ark Royal is torpedoed by U-81, sinking the following day. Only one of 1,488 crew killed.  Commissioned in 1938, several design flaws contributed to the loss, which were rectified in new British carriers. [120]


Congress amends Neutrality Act to permit arming of merchant ships and their entry into war zones [11]

  November 14

Carrier HMS Ark Royal sinks off Gibraltar [2, 11]

  November 15

German troops resume the attack on Moscow, Russia [2]

Japanese submarines depart Japan for the attack on the U.S. fleet at Pearl Harbor, #Hawaii [116]


Battleship Settsu began transmitting large quantities of fake radio messages [2]


 ‘C’ Force arrives in Hong Kong. The Canadian  reinforcement was sent to the British colony to deter further Japanese aggression in East Asia {31]

November 16

Germans renew drive against Moscow, capture Kerch [11]

U.S. Ambassador to Japan Joseph Grew sends word to Washington that Japan plans to launch an attack against Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, but his cable is basically ignored.  [116]

November 17 German troops near Moscow encounter Central Asian troops for the first time [2]

 


Eighth Army crosses the ‘Wire’ that marked the border between Egypt and Libya. It was the largest tank force the British Empire had ever assembled [130]


The SAS conducted its first ever operation. It was a complete failure, but a willingness to go back to the drawing board, support from command and doing things differently helped create a legend. [130]

  November 18  
The Australian light cruiser HMAS Sydney and the German auxiliary cruiser Kormoran engage each other off the coast of Western Australia. The 30 minute action results in the Sydney being sunk and the Kormoran scuttled. 727 are killed. [57] November 19

 

  November 20

German troops capture Rostov, Russia [2]

US Navy detect the arrival of Japanese submarines in the Marshall Islands [2]

November 21

German break-through at Volokolamsk [11]

  November 22

Thick ice on Lake Ladoga allow supply truck traffic in and out of Leningrad[2]


Convoy PQ-3 arrives in the USSR carrying 50 Valentine tanks, but more importantly spare parts for the ones that already arrived. Supplies of ammunition and spare parts limited the usefulness of imported tanks at first [22]

  November 23 Axis troops outflank British forces south of Sidi Rezegh, Libya [2]

 


The United States and the Dutch government in exile agree to allow the U.S. to occupy #Suriname to protect the bauxite mines from Germany during World War II. [116]

  November 24

Heydrich establishes Theresienstadt as a “model camp”. For 3 and a half years, Theresienstadt served as a transit & ghetto labour camp. It was was cynically described in Nazi propaganda as a “spa town” where elderly German Jews could “retire” in safety. [126]

  November 25 Indian 7th Brgd. repulses an attack by German 5th Panzer Regiment at Sidi Omar, Libya [2[

 


Battleship HMS BARHAM struck by 3 torpedos from U-331 in the Mediterranean.She capsizes to port & sinks within 4 mins after a massive explosion. 862 men were killed from a ships company of over 1200. [13, 87]

US Consulate Warns Americans to Get Out of Japan November 26 Soviet troops re-open the Tula-Moscow rail line in Russia [2]
Washington issues a “war warning” to U.S. forces at Pearl Harbor. It advises commanders to prepare for a Japanese surprise attack *somewhere* in the Pacific. November 27 Siege of Tobruk ends

 


The German SS Reich Division captures Istra west of Moscow, Russia [2]

  November 28  
  November 29  
  November 30  
  December 1  
  December 2 Motorcycle scouts of 2nd Panzer Div claimed to have reached Khimki, 10 miles NW of Kremlin [2]
  December 3 The German 4th Army is halted at Naro-Fominsk west of Moscow, Russia [2]
Japanese submarines receive Pearl Harbor attack plans [2] December 4  
  December 5  
  December 6  
Japan attacks Perl Harbor.

 


Japan declares war on both the US and the UK

December 7  
The US and the UK declare war on Japan December 8 German troops begin to fall back away from Moscow [2]

 


The first group of Jews were deported & murdered in mobile gas chambers in  Kulmhof (Chełmno). The first German extermination camp began its operation.

Japanese and British troops clash at the airfield at Kota Bharu, British Malaya [2]

 


American B-17s from the 19th Bombardment Group on the Philippines strike Japanese ships off Luzon. The two countries have been at war for less than 48 hours. [4]


Japanese aircraft bomb Nichols Field on Luzon. In two days of raids, the Far East Air Force (FEAF) aircraft strength is reduced by half and Philippines air superiority is lost. [37]

December 9

Russians retake Tikhvin and Elets [11]

HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Repulse, which had been sent to protect Singapore, were destroyed by overwhelming Japanese air power Japanese take Khota Baru in Malaya, gain foothold on Luzon and Guam. [2, 11] December 10 The siege of Tobruk, Libya is lifted [2]

SS Colborne (Canadian National Steamships) is  damaged by bombs from Japanese aircraft off Penang, Malaysia [61]


Japanese troops land at Legaspi, Luzon, Philippine Islands [2]


American fliers sink Japanese battleship Haruna [11]


A furious assault by the Japanese forces invading Hong Kong breaches the “Gin Drinker’s Line” of defences & forts, which the British hoped to hold for months. The Gin-Drinker’s Line, 18km of bunkers, trenches & artillery posts built to be guarded by 30,000 men, has less than 10,000 defenders- mostly new recruits [16]

December 11 The US Office of Price Administration begins restricing car tire sales [5]

 


Germany and Italy declare war on the US.


The US declares war on both Germany and Italy.

Japanese 5th Division attacks Jitra, British Malaya [2] December 12  
All British troops withdraw from Kowloon onto Hong Kong island December 13 Soviet troops attack near Moscow, forcing the Germans to fall back [2]

British authorities at Hong Kong refuse the Japanese demand for surrender [2]

December 14  
Stocks of rubber are destroyed in Malaya to prevent Japanese capture [2] December 15  
Japanese troops land on British Borneo [2] December 16  

British and Indian troops form a line 65 miles south of Penang, Malaya [2]

December 17  

Japanese troops land on Hong Kong Island. “C” Company of the Royal Rifles of Canada faced the Japanese soon after they landed. They caused heavy Japanese casualties while suffering heavily themselves [31]


Japanese troops behead two POWs in Hong Kong, force nurses to witness[2]


1st and 2nd Squadrons of Flying Tigers are transferred to Kunming, China [2]

December 18

U. S. President Roosevelt creates the Roberts Commissions led by SCOTUS Owen J. Roberts to investigate the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. [37]

Japanese troops capture Penang, Malaya [2]

 


Del Monte Airfield the secret base on Mindanao in the Philippines is attacked by Japanese Zeros that destroy parked B-17 Flying Fortresses and B-18 Bolos. Overnight, the remainder will evacuate to Darwin [37]

December 19 Italian frogmen sink the Queen Elizabeth and Valiant with limpet mines [2]

 


As the German offensive against Moscow flounders during World War II, German dictator Adolf Hitler takes complete command of the German Wehrmacht. [116]

British, Canadian & Indian troops in Hong Kong launch a furious counterattack on the Japanese beachhead, but fail to push the invaders off the island [16, 20]

 


First combat of the American Volunteer Group, better known as the “Flying Tigers”, when P-40s of the 1st and 2nd Squadrons intercepted ten unescorted Kawasaki Ki-48 “Lily” bombers of the 21st Hikotai who were raiding Kunming. [8]


U. S. aircraft and personnel begin withdrawing from Clark Field, the largest American overseas airbase in the world. The last aircraft fly south while ground personnel will become infantry. [37]


Douglas MacArthur is promoted to the rank of general [2]

December 20 Soviet troops attack west from Tula, Russia [2]

Exiled Filipino Revolutionary General Artemio Ricarte is flown to Aparri to aid the Japanese occupation of the Philippines and resumed fighting against the United States. [37]

December 21

Allied troops pursue retreating Axis units toward Beda Fomm, Libya [2]


Hitler announces that he has assumed supreme command of the Army in place of Brauchitsch [11]

The Japanese 55th Div, in Bangkok, prepare to cross into Burma [2] December 22 First flight of the Fairey Firefly, British carrier-borne fighter and anti-submarine aeroplane [8]

American troops begin withdrawing toward Bataan Peninsula in Philippines [2]


Maizuru Second Special Naval Landing Force landed on Wake Atoll [2]


After gallantly holding out for 15 days, a small force of U.S. Marines on Wake Island surrender to the Japanese. U.S. forces never tried to retake the island and it remained in Japanese hands until the end of World War II [116]


The Japanese Maizuru Second Special Naval Landing Force lands on Wake Atoll [2]

December 23

First flight of the Douglas C-47 Skytrain (or Dakota). American military transport aircraft developed from the Douglas DC-3 airliner. [8, 9]

Japanese slaughtered soldiers, docs, nurses at St Stephen hospital in Hong Kong [2] December 24

During World War II, the Free French under Charles de Gaulle liberate Saint Pierre and Miquelon from Vichy France. Salt Pierre and Miquelon are islands near Fortune Bay in Newfoundland, Canada [116]

Hong Kong falls to the Japanese invading forces. The RAF station at Hong Kong, RAF Kai Tak had only a handful biplanes: Supermarine Walrus seaplanes and Vickers Vildebeest bombers. After these were lost, RAF personnel served on as ground troops. [60]


Japanese troops land at Jolo, Philippines [2]


Submarine USS Sealion (SS-195) is scuttled at Cavite due to extensive damaged from two Japanese bombs on December 8 and becomes the first U. S. sub loss of World War II. [37]


Japanese troops capture the British airfield near Kuching, Sarawak [2]

December 25  

Anglo-Indian and Japanese troops clash at Chemor, Malaya [2]

December 26

Stalin orders that the armour of T-34 tanks must be increased. 15 mm thick applique plates would be added to the 45 mm basic plate at first before manufacturing transitioned to 60 mm monolithic plates. [22]

Chinese troops ambushed Japanese attackers at Changsha, China [2]

 


B-17E Flying Fortress 41-2402 patrolling off Hawaii becomes lost and ditches roughly 40 miles south of Kauai Island. The crew float in life rafts for three days until spotted and rescued [37]
December 27 Several British Commando units plus Norwegian Independent Company 1 conducted Operation Archery, also known as the Måløy Raid. The operation was actually a diversionary raid for Operation Anklet which was conducted at the same time. [124]
The Japanese 16th Division captures Luisiana, Philippines [2] December 28  
  December 29 The Soviet 44th Army lands at Feodosiya to reinforce Sevastopol [2]
The Japanese Lingayen Force captures Tarlac, Philippines [2] December 30 German troops retreat from Kerch, Russia [2]/td>
  December 31 USS Gato SS-212 is commissioned in the U. S. Navy as the lead ship of the Gato class submarine and will have a distinguished career including 13 war patrols in the Pacific [37]

 


Japanese Lingayen Force captures Sibul Springs, Philippines [2]

 


Adm. Chester W. Nimitz assumes command of US Pacific Fleet for duration of #WWII [107
1942
The US War Production Board orders a temporary end on civilian auto sales [5]

 


Japanese troops continue the assault on Kampar, British Malaya [2]


USS Nautilus conducts an unusual mission by rescuing a group of refugees in the Solomons that included nuns in white habits who had evaded the Japanese for nine months. The four “Submarine Sisters” of St. Joseph of Orange returned to the Solomons after the war. [66]

January 1

Enemy aliens traveling in the US must get prior approval [5]


Kittyhawk fighters see combat in North Africa for the first time [2]

Japanese troops capture the open city of Manila, Philippines [2]

 


Japanese and Indian troops clash at Kampar Hill, Malaya [2]

January 2  
US-Filipino troops fall back to the Guagua-Porac defensive line in the Philippines [2]

 


51 Hawker Hurricane fighters arrive in Singapore with the advance parties of Nos. 17, 135, 136 and 232 Squadrons. They are immediately put to the test against the Japanese invaders. [60]

January 3  
  January 4  
  January 5  
Japanese aircraft bomb Dutch positions on Ambon, Dutch East Indies for the first time [2]

 


Japanese flying boats bomb Vunakanau Airfield near Rabaul on New Britain.  [37]

January 6  
Japanese troops capture the bridges over Slim River in Malaya [2]

 


Japanese make probing attacks at opening of the Bataan peninsula in the Philippines [2]


Japanese Navy A6M2 Zeros from the Tainan Kokutai (Tainan Air Group) arrive at Zettle Airfield at Jolo, Sulu Islands in the southern Philippines. [37]


Japanese make probing attacks at opening of the Bataan peninsula in Philippines [2]

January 7

German Army Chief of Staff Franz Halder notes in his diary that Colonel Hermann Ochsner is trying to talk him into using poison gas against the Soviets on the Eastern Front. These suggestions were rejected by the #German high command. [116]

Japanese troops penetrate the outer lines of defense at Kuala Lumpur, Malaya [2] January 8  
The main offensive against the Bataan Peninsula in the Philippines begains [2]

 


Japanese troops begin to fall back from Changsha, China [2]

January 9 The Soviet 3rd and 4th Shock Armies attack German defenses south of Demyansk, Russia [2]

Douglas MacArthur travels from Corregidor to Bataan to visit the front lines [2]

January 10 The Soviet 29th Army attacks north of Rhzev, Russia [2]

Dutch troops destroy 700 oil wells at Tarakan to avoid Japanese capture [2]


Japan declares war on the Netherlands to coincide with landings in the Netherlands East Indies (NEI) including Borneo, Celebes (Sulawesi) and Tarakan Island to seize oil drilling facilities and refineries. [37]

January 11  
Japanese troops execute Dutch POWs at Tarakan for their sabotage of oil wells [2] January 12 The South African 1st Division captures Sollum, Egypt

 

British merchant ship SS


RCN Cyclops torpedoed by U-123 SE of Cape Sable, 88 killed. HMCS RED DEER rescues 93 survivors. This is 1st U-boat attack in new German offensive operations off Canadian/US Atlantic Coast & in the St. Lawrence. [61]


The decision is made by the Inter-Allied Conference in London to try Axis officials with war crimes at the end of World War II. [116]


The Germans liquidate the Gypsy camp in the Litzmannstadt Ghetto, deporting 4,300 people, men, women and children to the German death camp Kulmhof where they were all murdered. Kulmhof was mostly the centre of the liquidation of Jews from Wartheland. [55]


Charles Lindbergh is refused service in the U. S. military due to his prewar isolationist views. Instead, Henry Ford hires him as a consultant and in 1944 he will fly combat missions in the Pacific. [37]

Hawker Hurricanes arrive in Singapore in their crates and are rapidly assembled to aid the defence. They have an immediate effect: 27 Japanese bombers flew unescorted over Singapore and the Hurricanes shot down 8 of them. [60]


Japanese Naval General Staff explore possibility of submarine carriers [2]

January 13

Soviet 11th Army and German 18th Motorized Div clash at Staraya Russa, Russia [2]

Japanese forces advance into Burma [2]

 


Japanese troops crossed the Kelamah River into Australian ambush. [2]


Japanese troops cross the Kelamah River into Australian ambush [2]

January 14

The Sikorsky XR-4 helicopter made its first test flight in Stratford, Connecticut. It would become the first helicopter to be used by the Allied forces in World War II. [128]


First ship sunk by German submarines off United States east coast [11]

The Japanese 4th and 5th Imperial Guard Rgmts engage Indian troops at Muar River, Malaya [2]

 


Chinese troops repulse the Japanese attack on Changsha, Hunan Province, China [2]


Pan-American conference opens at Rio de Janeiro. Japanese launch invasion of Burma, claim Tampin and Gemas in Malaya. [11]

January 15  
British and Japanese troops engage in the first major clash in Burma [2]

 


Lost and out of fuel, TBD-1 Devastator 0335 piloted by Harold F. Dixon ditches into the Pacific Ocean the crew float in their life raft for 34 days before reaching an Island and are later rescued. [37]

January 16

Nazi German authorities begin to deport Jewish people from Lodz ghetto to the Chełmno extermination camp. It is estimated that at least 167,000 Jewish people and approximately 4,300 Roma were murdered at Chełmno between December 1941 and March 1943 and June–July 1944 [49, 118, 126]

The Indian 45th Brigade withdraws from Bukit Bakri, British Malaya [2]

 


Japanese cross Muar River in Malaya, claim landings in Subic Bay in Luzon [11]

January 17 5,000 Axis troops surrender to the South African 6th Infantry Brigade in Egypt [2]
The Dutch begin to destroy oil facilities at Balikpapan, Dutch Borneo [2] January 18 The German 11.Armee captures Feodosiya in the Crimea region of Russia [2]

 


HMCS LYNX rescues crew of SS Empire Kingfisher, badly holed after grounding off Cape Sable, ship moved to Bantam Rocks. Later U-109 finds the anchored merchant ship & fires 5 torpedoes -all miss. Freighter sinks next day from damage from grounding [61]

  January 19  
The Indian and Australian retreat from Bakri, Malaya is cut off by the Japanese [2] January 20  
Japanese troops penetrate the west side of the Abucay-Mauban defensive line [2] January 21  
Japanese troops land on New Ireland and capture Kavieng [2] January 22  
The Japanese Sasebo Combined Special Naval Landing Force sets sail for Kendari, Celebes [2] January 23 The Soviet 3rd Shock Army surrounds 5,500 German troops at Kholm, Russia [2]
Japanese aircraft attack Rangoon, Burma for the second day in a row [2]

 


Four Japanese transports are sunk at the Battle of Makassar Strait [2]

January 24  
Japanese troops capture Batu Pahat, British Malaya [2]

 


US-Filipino troops continue to withdraw from the Abucay-Mauban line on Bataan [2]


Following Allied air raids on Bangkok, Thailand, whose prime minister was pro-Japanese,  declares war on Great Britain and the United States. Britain in turn declares war on Thailand while the U.S. simply ignores the Thai declaration. Originally, when the war first started, Thailand had declared its neutrality. [57, 116]

January 25  
  January 26 The first American soldiers deployed to Europe land in Belfast, Co. Antrim Northern Ireland
Japanese troops capture the Singkawang II airfield on Dutch Borneo [2]

 


Destroyer HMS Thanet is sunk off SE Malaya after attacking a Japanese troop convoy escort of superior force in company with destroyer HMAS Vampire. The latter survived the engagement but Thanet was immobilised and sunk, with 38 confirmed dead. [137]

January 27 Rommel directs his main force toward Benghazi, Libya [2]

 


Canadian Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King announces that Canadian Sterling balances, totaling $700 million from war supplies, held in the United Kingdom would be converted into an interest-free loan to Britain for the duration of the war. [31]


Winter mobility trials of foreign vehicles are held in the USSR. The Valentine takes 14 minutes to cross a series of packed snow obstacles, still faster then the Pz.Kpfw.III or Matilda tanks. [22]

US and Filipino troops wipe out the Japanese beachhead at Longoskawayan Point [2]

 


The US transport GENERAL ROYAL T FRANK, towing an ammunition barge from Kahului to Hilo…off Maui when torpedoed by the Japanese submarine I-171. The Frank explodes and sinks in less than 30 seconds with the loss of 29 [142]
January 28 Indian troops destroy port facilities at Benghazi as the Germans approach [2]
British colonial administrators flee British Malaya for Singapore [2]

 


The Japanese land at Pemangkat in west Borneo [11]

January 29  
British troops in the southern tip of Malaya complete the withdrawal into Singapore [2]

 


400 Japanese troops land at Adang Bay, Borneo [2]

January 30 Hunger is driving many Leningraders to cannibalism: in the last 10 days alone, NKVD have discovered 42 corpses with thighs & breasts hacked off for meat. [28]
Japanese 55th Infantry Division captures Moulmein, Burma [2]

 

Allied forces retreat from Malaya to Singapore then Allied military engineers blow a 70 foot gap in the causeway linking Johore to Singapore – Japanese forces are now just 15 miles away from the city [20. 28, 57]

January 31 Civilian auto production halted. Manufacturing capacity began to to be repurposed for defense production. [5]
PT boats and P-40 aircraft repulse Japanese attempt to land on Bataan

 


Aircraft from the carriers USS Yorktown and USS Enterprise mount raids on Japanese forces near the Marshall and Gilbert Islands. The action represents America’s first sizeable offensive operation of WW2. It’s been just 56 days since Pearl Harbor. [4]

February 1  
Japanese aircraft drive Allied warships away from Singapore [2] February 2 The Soviet 3rd Shock Army attacks German troops trapped in Kholm, Russia [2]
Burmese and Indian troops withdraw from Martaban, Burma toward the Bilin River [2]

 


Port Moresby, New Guinea is bombed by the Japanese, increasing the threat to Australia posed by Japan [11]


The first air raid on naval base of Soerabaya in Java. Bataan defenders beat off Japanese attempt at night landing by sea [11]

February 3 German forces counterattack toward Vyazma, encircling several Soviet divisions [2]
British authorities in Singapore turn down a Japanese demand for surrender [2] February 4

BOA75 -M/V Montrolite, (Imperial Oil Ltd, Toronto) torpedoed by U-109, mid-Atlantic, NE of Bermuda. 28 merchant sailors are killed, 20 rescued [61]

The carrier Hosho launches sorties against Chinese positions in Shanghai [2]

 


Japanese troops make a feint towards the Pulau Ubin island to the east of Singapore [2]

February 5  
  February 6  
Japanese aircraft attack Palembang, Sumatra, Dutch East Indies February 7  
Japanese Sasebo Combined Special Naval Landing Force lands at Makassar, Celebes [2] February 8 Soviet troops encircle 90,000 Germans at Demyansk, Russia [2]
The battle of Singapore begins

 


Japanese troops capture Tengah airfield at Singapore [2]

February 9 Soviet troops encircle 90,000 Germans at Demyansk, Russia
The RAF withdraws the small number of aircraft from Singapore to prevent Japanese capture [2] February 10 Soap is now rationed in Britain, to save valuable fats & shipping space; 4 ounces of soap can be bought per person per week for washing clothes & bodies. [28]

 


British families are rationed to 5 inches of bath water, once a week, to save fuel; Britons joke they now “stink for victory”. [28]

The Japanese 5th Div attacks Allied troops at Bukit Timah Hill in Singapore [2] February 11  
Japanese attack the Australian mainland, Darwin, for the first time February 12 British aircraft unexpectedly find a German fleet sailing through English Channel [2]
Japanese troops capture Bandjarmasin, the capital of Dutch Borneo [2] February 13  
Japanese soldiers enter the Alexandra Hospital. A massacre of wounded Allied soldiers, nurses and doctors follows; those who survive do so by playing dead

 


HMS LI WO, a requisitioned Yangtze river steamer, manned by Merchant Navy officers given “acting” ranks in the RNR, is shelled and sunk 30 miles South of Banka. HMS Li Wo had attacked a Japanese convoy in the Bangka Strait, sinking one transport and damaging others before being sunk by shells from a Japanese light cruiser and two destroyers. 77 of her crew died and 7 were taken prisoner. the “Master” Thomas Wilkinson was awarded the Victoria Cross [137, 142]


River gunboats HMS Grasshopper and HMS Dragonfly are sunk by Japanese aircraft in the Bangka Strait off eastern Sumatra while carrying evacuees from Singapore. 42 crew died in Grasshopper, 48 in Dragonfly, with an unconfirmed number of evacuees [137]

 


Adnan bin Saidi is tied to a tree and bayoneted to death by the Japanese [2]

February 14 First flight of the Douglas C-54 (DC-4 for the civilian version), 4-engine propeller-driven airliner used by the US in WWII and beyond

 


The Polish Home Army, the largest organised underground resistance movement in occupied Europe during #WW2, was formed. It had grown from initial 100,000 members to more than 380,000 by 1944, and answered to the Polish Government-in-Exile. [23]


Ill-fated Royal Navy submarine HMS P.38 attacks a north-bound convoy off Tunisia. She hit SS Ariosto with two torpedoes. Amongst crew and guards, 138 Empire POWs die in the attack. [130]

Singapore surrenders to Japan

 


Japanese troops penetrate Indian defensive lines north of Rangoon [2]

February 15  
The Sook Ching Massacre begins; thousands of ethnic Chinese Singaporeans will die [2] February 16  
Japanese troops cross the Bilin River north of Rangoon, Burma [2]

 


Nobuo Fujita flies a reconnaissance mission over Sydney harbor [2]

February 17  
  February 18

Omar Bradley is promoted to the temporary rank of major general [2]

Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066 [2]

 


Japanese aircraft raid Darwin, Australia

February 19 This allows Japanese-Americans to be gathered up and sent to internment camps
Japanese troops overrun Portuguese defenders at Dili [2] February 20  
German spy Bernard Kuehn is arrested in Hawaii [2] February 21  
Roosevelt personally orders General MacArthur to leave the Philippines [2] February 22 The British 11th and 12th African Divisions wipe out Italian positions at Jilib, Somaliland
Sittang railway bridge in Burma is blown up to prevent its capture by the Japanese [2] February 23  
  February 24  
  February 25 The Soviets began trials for a new submachine gun to succeed PPSh-41 [2]
US FBI agents begin to relocate Japanese-American civilians in Los Angeles February 26  
  February 27  
  February 28  
US authorities round up 112,000 Japanese-Americans for internment March 1  
Japanese troops force the Indian 17th Infantry Division out of Payagyi, Burma [2] March 3  
Second attack on Perl Harbor by the Japanese

 

Japanese troops enveloped Chinese troops at Toungoo, Burma [2]

Dutch troops evacuated from Batavia and Leuwiliang, Java [2]

March 4  
Anglo-Indian and Japanese troops clash at various roadblocks near Rangoon, Burma [2] March 6  
Japanese troops reach Tjilatjap, Java, Dutch East Indies [2] March 7  
  March 8  
Japanese troops enter undefended Rangoon, Burma [2] March 9 An order is given to cease production of the T-60 and replace it with the T-70. These light tanks would go on to become the second most numerous tank in the Red Army. [22]
MacArthur once again receives orders to evacuate Philippines [2] March 10  
Japanese troops land on Mindanao, Philippines [2] March 11  
  March 12  
  March 13  
  March 14  
MacArthur departs Philippines by B-17 bomber for Australia [2] March 15  
Announcement that American troops have arrived in Australia [11] March 16 Belzec Concentration Camp is established in occupied Poland [2]
  March 17  
  March 18  
  March 19  
First flight of the Mitsubishi J2M Raiden ‘Jack’, single-engine land-based fighter aircraft used by the Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service in WWII March 20 Mitsubishi J2M Raiden aircraft takes its first flight [2]

 


MacArthur makes the I Shall Return speech at Terowie, Australia [2]

MacArthur discovers there is no army waiting for him to take back the Philippines [2] March 21  
American and British airmen abandon the airfield in Magwe in Burma [2] March 22 Mass exterminations of Jews using Zyklon B gas begins at Auschwitz [2]
Japanese 18th Infantry Division lands at Port Blair, Andaman Islands [2]

 


US Navy intelligence in the Philippines cautiously links Japanese code AF to Midway [2]

March 23  
  March 24  
Japanese troops assault Taungoo, Burma [2] March 25  
Chinese and Japanese troops engage in house-to-house fighting in Taungoo, Burma [2]

 


The Japanese First Air Fleet departed from Celebes for the Indian Ocean [2]

March 26  
Japanese aircraft and artillery bombard Chinese positions at Taungoo, Burma [2] March 27  
Chinese troops fall back from Taungoo, failing to destroy the bridge over the Sittang [2] March 29  
Japanese bombers attack US field hospital No. 1 at Bataan despite being marked with large red crosses March 30  
Japanese troops occupy Bougainville [2] March 31  
Japanese troops land at Buka and Santa Isabel in the Solomon Islands [2] April 1  
Japanese troops penetrate Filipino 41st Inf Div lines at Bataan [2] April 3  
Japanese troops capture Mandalay, Burma April 6  
Japanese occupy Manus Island in Admiralty group [11] April 8  
The Bataan Peninsula falls to the Japanese army. 75,000 American and Filipino soldiers become POWs and will soon be forced to endure a gruelling 70-mile march into captivity. [4]

 


Japanese fliers raid Trincomalee, sink cruisers Dorsetshire and Cornwall [11]


Akagi aircraft strike Trincomalee, Ceylon, sinking HMS Hermes and her escorts [2]

April 9  
Bataan Death March begins in the Philippines [2] April 10  
350 Filipino POWs are killed by Japanese north of Mount Samat during Bataan Death March [2] April 11 A Soviet landing attempt near Eupatoria was halted by the Germans [2]
The Japanese artillery bombardment of Corregidor island begins [2] April 12  
The Japanese 56th Infantry Division captures Mauchi, Burma [2] April 13  
  April 14 Hitler orders the Luftwaffe to begin bombing British cultural sites [2]
  April 15  
The Chinese 38th Div captures Twingon, Burma then fought off Japanese counterattack [2]

 


British escape from trap at Yenangyaung [11]

April 19  
Doolittle leads US air raid on Japan. B-25 bombers attacked Tokyo, Yokohama, Yokasuka, Kobe, Osaka, and Nagoya by surprise [2,11] April 18  
Japanese troops capture Taunggyi, Burma [2] April 20  
Japanese 18th Division captures Kyidaunggan, Burma from Chinese troops [2]

 


Indian 17th Inf Div falls back from Taungdwingyi to Mahlaing to protect Mandalay [2]

April 21 Nazi occupiers of France shoot 20 civilians, claiming they aided British commandos in blowing up St. Nazaire port last month [16]
  April 22 British commandos raid in Boulogne area [11]
  April 23 British bombers attack the Heinkel factory near Rostock, Germany with poor results [2]
The Japanese 18th Infantry Division captures Yamethin, Burma [2] April 24  
Japanese troops massacre entire Chinese villages suspected of aiding Doolittle Raiders [2]

 


American troops occupy New Caledonia [11]

April 25  
Indian 17th Division moves to Meiktila, Burma to assist with Chinese defense [2] April 26 Reichstag reaffirms Hitler’s arbitrary powers [11]
USN cryptanalytic team detects request by Kondo for Aleutian navigation charts [2] April 27 British air raid on Trondheim [11]
Japanese reach Lashio, terminus of Burma Road [11]

 


Japanese Naval General Staff reviews underwater aircraft carrier proposal [2]

April 28  
Japanese 18th Infantry Division captures Kyaukse, Burma [2] April 29 Meeting of Hitler and Mussolini in two-day conference at Salzburg [11]
  April 30  
A national “Victory Speed” limit is set . . .

 


The Japanese 18th Infantry Division captures Mandalay, Burma [2]

May 1 . . . in the US of 35 MPH which lasted until after the end of the war [5]

 


Production of the T-60 tank ends. It is replaced with the T-70 tank, also a small two-man tank, but with more impressive armament and armor, and more importantly, higher reliability [22]

Japanese artillery detonates 1,600 powder bags of battery Geary on Corregidor [2] May 2 Cruiser Edinburgh lost in the battle over Murmansk convoy [11]
The Japanese 3rd Kure Special Landing Force captures Tulagi Island and Gavutu Island [2] May 3  
Beginning of five-day air-naval battle in Coral Sea. [11]

 


Japanese troops captured Bhamo, Burma [2]

May 4  
The Battle of the Coral Sea May 4 – 8  
  May 5 The German 16th Army brakes through to Kholm, Russia [2]

 


British land on Madagascar, attack base on Diego Suarez [11]

  May 7 Germans halt Soviet offensive NW of Leningrad. The 872 day siege of this city (renamed its original Saint Petersburg in 1991) by German and Finnish forces lasted from 9/41-1/44 [14]
Carrier Shokaku was damaged by 3 bombs at Coral Sea [2] May 8 Germans open drive on Kerch. [11]
Zuikaku was ordered to pursue any US ships remaining in Coral Sea area [2] May 9  
The Thai Phayap Army invaded Shan State, Burma [2] May 10 Churchill warns Germans against use of poison gas. [11]
Joseph Rochefort and team found further hints of a planned attack on Midway [2] May 11  
  May 12 Soviet troops began to withdraw from the Kerch peninsula [2]
  May 13 An Order in Council established the University Air Training Corps as a part of the RAF ARC. The program was designed to enlist, instruct, and train university students during the period of their university courses [31]

 


Hitler raises the bar for the weight limit of the Maus tank from 100 to 120 tons. This was not even close to the final weight, as during the development the mass of the vehicle ballooned to 188 tons [22]

  May 14 Ernest King belatedly allowed armed escorts for coastal shipping [2]
The US begins gasoline rationing

 


Aichi receives a request to design the 1st propose-built sub-borne attack aircraft [2]

May 15 to support the war effort

 


A bill establishing a women’s corps in the US Army becomes law, creating the Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps (WAACs) and granting women official military status. [47,48]

  May 16 Germans claim capture of Kerch [11]
  May 17 German 1st Panzer Army attacks Soviet troops at Izium, Ukraine [2]

 


Cruiser Prinz Eugen attacked off Norway by British planes [11]

  May 18 130 Soviet tanks are destroyed by a German attack in Ukraine [2]
  May 19 3,623 men perish during the catastrophic Allied sea bound attack on the German-occupied port of Dieppe [18]
  May 20  
The first flight of the P-61. This night fighter was used in both theaters of the war

 


Japanese troops occupy Leyte and Samar in the Philippine Islands unopposed [2]

May 21 German 6th Army and 1st Panzer Army nearly surrounded Izium, Ukraine [2]
  May 22 German 14th Division and 16th Panzer Division occupied Chepel and Bayrak in Ukraine [2]
Japanese and Chinese troops clash along the Hsipaw-Mogok road in northern Burma May 23  
  May 24  
  May 25  
US Navy Rear Admiral Spruance took over the responsibilities of Vice Admiral Halsey [2] May 26 Britain and Russia sign a 20-year military alliance [11]
Thai forces capture Kengtung, Burma [2] May 27 SS-Obergruppenführer Reinhard Heydrich was shot in Prague by British SOE agents and died June 4. Nazi intelligence falsely linked the assassins to the villages of Lidice and Ležáky. Both villages were razed; all men and boys over the age of 16 were shot, and all but a handful of the women and children were deported and killed in Nazi concentration camps.
Japanese capture Kinhwa [11] May 28 Allies began counterattacks in Libya, forming the Cauldron [2]
The Main Body of the Japanese Midway invasion fleet set sail [2] May 29 Bing Crosby records “White Christmas.” The song came to mean so much to millions of Americans during WWII dreaming of being home for the holidays. [37]
  May 30-31 First ‘1000 bomber raid‘ by the RAF against Cologne  [11]
Japanese submarines are sunk in Sydney harbor [11]

 


Joseph Rochefort determines that the Japanese would attack Midway on 3 Jun 1942 [2]

May 31  
  June 1 Axis tanks brake through positions held by British 150th Brigade at Sidi Muftah [2]
  June 2 Germans and Italians mount a new attack on the French-held fort of Bir Hakeim, Libya. [2]
Japanese submarine cordon established; too late to detect US carriers sailing for Midway [2] June 3  
U.S. warships ambush a Japanese task force off Midway. Japan loses four carriers and nearly 250 warplanes in the ensuing battle [2,4]

 


The Grumman TBF Avenger takes part in the Battle of Midway which begins today [9]

June 4  
Yamamoto calls off Midway operation, ending the battle [2] June 5 America issues its last formal declaration of war when Washington announces a state of hostilities against the Axis powers of Bulgaria, Hungary, and Romania. [4]

 


German bombardment opens attack on Sevastopol [11]

  June 6 In Libya, Kittybombers repeatedly attack Axis armor formations [2]
Japanese troops occupy Kiska, Aleutian Islands, US Territory of Alaska [2] June 7 The German 11th Army begins a 2-pronged assault on the city of Sevastopol [2]
  June 8  
  June 9 Britain and the United States create the Combined Production and Resources Board. [11]
  June 10 The Nazis burn the Czech village of Lidice as a reprisal for the killing of SS official Reinhard Heydrich [4,11]
  June 11 Axis capture of Bir Hacheim [11]

 


German troops advanced toward El Adem and Knightsbridge [2]

On his 18th birthday George H. W. Bush enlists in the US Navy June 12 He is later elected the 41st President of the United States and serves from 1989 to 1993
  June 13 German forces surround the British troops in the Knightsbridge box near Tobruk [2]

 


German troops capture Fort Stalin at Sevastopol [2]

  June 14 Auchinleck authorizes the abandonment of the Gazala Line in Libya [2]
  June 15  
  June 16 Axis troops attack El Adem and Sidi Rezegh near Tobruk, Libya [2]

 


Axis forces reach Libyan coast east of El Gazala [11]

  June 17 Soviet defense lines north of Sevastopol begin to collapse [2]
  June 18 The British army in Libya retires to Tobruk and to Egyptian frontier [11]
  June 19 The Germans claim breach in northern defenses of Sevastopol. [11]
Japanese submarine shells Vancouver Island [11] June 20 Axis troops enter Tobruk; British troops have destroyed stocks of fuel and supplies [2]
Fort Stevens in Oregon is shelled by Japanese submarine I-25 but the attack causes no real damage [5] June 21-22 British, South African, and Indian troops surrender at Tobruk [2]
  June 22 Erwin Rommel is promoted to the rank of Generalfeldmarshall [2]

 


Germans claim full control north of Sevastopol Bay [11]

  June 23  
  June 24 Germans wipe out Czech village of Levzaky [11]
  June 25 The third Thousand Bomber Raid strikes Bremen, Germany, killing 85, wounding 497 [2]

 


Russians announce the abandonment of Kupyansk [11]

  June 26 German troops reach the northern shore of Severnaya Bay near Sevastopol [2]
  June 27  
  June 28 German bombers attack Weston-super-Mare, England, killing 102 [2]
  June 29 The German 90th Light Division reaches Sidi Abdel Rahman, Egypt [2]

 


Germans open the main Russian offensive from Kursk; Germans claim the elimination of Volkhov pocket [11]

  June 30 Axis troops reach El Alamein, Egypt [2]
  July 1  
  July 2 Mexico formally at war with Axis [11]

 


Rommel belatedly abandons his southward tank sweep near El Alamein [2]

4-day air-navel battle off Midway begins. Air raid on Dutch Harbour [11] July 3 British aircraft flies 780 sorties against Axis positions at El Alamein [2]
  July 4 AVG is reformed into USAAF 23rd Fighter Group [2]
  July 5 Scattered convoy PQ-17 is hunted down by German submarines and aircraft [2]

 


German bombardment opens attack on Sevastopol [11]

  July 6 The German 4th Panzer Army reaches the outskirts of Voronezh, Russia [2]
  July 7  
  July 8  
  July 9 The German 6th Army reaches Rossosh, Russia [2]
First flight of the Douglas XA-26 Invader prototype American twin-engine light attack bomber [8] July 10 Russians announce the abandonment of Rossosh [11]

 


Australian 26th Brigade captures Tel el Eisa ridge in Egypt [2]

  July 11 Nazi occupiers of Greece order all Jewish men in the city of Salonika- ~7000 people- to assemble in central Liberty Square, to register for forced labor. [16]

 


Australian 26th Brigade infantry and British tanks capture Point 24 near El Alamein [2]


Germans break-through at Kantemirovka and Lisichansk [11]

  July 12 A German attack in the Tel el Eisa ridge region near El Alamein is repulsed. [2]
  July 13  
  July 14  
USS Grunion attacks the Japanese anchorage at Kiska, sinking 2 sub chasers [2] July 15 Russians admit the loss of Boguchar and Millerovo [11]

 


The U.S. oiler SS Pennsylvania Sun is torpedoed by the German submarine U-571, about 200 km west of Key West, Florida (USA). Pennsylvania Sun was saved and returned to service in 1943.

 [17]

The Japanese begin the construction of an airfield on Guadalcanal [2] July 16  
The Chinese 38th Division under Sun Liren arrives at Ramgarh Training Center, India [2]

 


The US 435th Bombardment Squadron discovers Japanese airfield at Guadalcanal [2]

July 17 The Germans claim Voroshilovgrad. [11]
  July 18 Prototype ME-262 V3 took its maiden flight with pilot Fritz Wendel [2,20]
  July 19 Russian bombers raid Koenigsberg [11]
  July 20 Soviet troops retake the German bridgehead at Voronezh, Russia [2]
  July 21  
Japanese forces land at Gona in modern Papua New Guinea. This was the beginning of the Kokoda Track campaign. The invasion, intent on capturing Port Moresby and threatening Australia, was thwarted by forces led by the Australian Army. July 21-27  
  July 22  
  July 23  
  July 24 The German SS Wiking Division captures the airfield near Rostov-on-Don [2,11]
Japanese leadership pauses the Kokoda advance [2] July 25 Germans claim Novocherkassk [11]
  July 26 Japanese troops attack Oivi, Australian Papua at 1500 hours [2]
  July 27  
  July 28 Joseph Stalin issues Order No. 227, ordering Not One Step Back! [2]
  July 29 Proletarskaya is captured by German troops [2]
The US Navy establishes the WAVES program [2] July 30  
The United States Navy receives its first deliveries of the Vought F4U-1 Corsair [9]

 


USAAF begins a 7-day bombardment against Tulagi and Guadalcanal [2]

July 31 HMCS Skeena and HMCS Wetaskiwin sink the German submarine U-588 in the Atlantic with depth charges; there are no survivors [51]
  August 1  
  August 2  
  August 3  
  August 4 George Kenney assumes command of Southwest Pacific Air Force in Australia [2]
The Japanese Battleship Musashi is commissioned into service at Nagasaki. [2] August 5  
  August 6 The destroyer HMCS Assiniboine trades fire with a Uboat for 35 minutes at point-blank range in the North Atlantic. The Canadian destroyer finally rams the sub [4]

 


Germans claim Tikhoretsk [11]


The German 17th Army captures Tikhoretsk in southern Russia [2]

U.S. Forces attack the Solomon Islands [11]

 


The U.S. Marines land at Guadalcanal. It’s the first major offensive operation by the United States in World War Two [2,4]

August 7 A detachment of the Canadian 3rd Light Anti-Aircraft Regiment shoots down a German JU 88 aircraft near Frinton, England. This action is the first successful kill of an enemy aircraft credited to a Canadian artillery unit [31]
Battle of Guadalcanal begins

 


Battle of Savo Island resulted in defeat for the Americans [2]


Indian Congress committee votes civil disobedience [11]

August 8 HMCS BATTLEFORD rescues 104 merchant sailors from SS Anneburg (British), SS Kaimoku (American), and SS Kelso (British) torpedoed by U-379 and U-176 while in convoy SC-94. The corvette then sinks the hulk of Anneberg. [61]

 


The Germans claim Armavir [11]

  August 9 HMCS BATTLEFORD rescues survivors from the merchant ship SS Radchurch, torpedoed by U-176 while in convoy SC-94. Adding 40 additional merchants sailors to the 104 rescued the day before in the already crowded corvette. [61]
  August 10 German troops reach the Krasnodar-Pyatigorsk-Maikop line in southern Russia [2]

 


The Germans claim Pyatigorsk [11]


The Pedestal convoy departs Gibraltar. [2]

US Marines continues the construction of the Japanese airfield on Guadalcanal [2] August 11 Hollywood actress Hedy Lamarr and composer George Antheil invent an ingenious frequency hopping system to safeguard torpedo guidance signals from enemy interference. Their device is patented becoming the basis for Wifi, GPS, and Bluetooth communication. 
Japanese troops nearly wiped out a patrol of LtCol Goettge near Matanikau River [2] August 12 12,000 keys totaling 300 pounds were turned in by ComEd in the Junior Association of Commerce “Keys for Victory” drive. The donation will fill the critical metal requirements of three new M-4 Army tanks. [69]

 


Churchill and Stalin meet in Moscow [2]


The Germans claim Elitsa. British air and naval forces bombard Rhodes [11]

Japanese and Australian troops clash at Deniki, Papua [2 August 13  
  August 14 German troops cross the Kuban River near Krasnodar [2]

 


German break-through near Kletskaya [11]

  August 15 Germans claim Georgievsk [11]

 


German troops attack Grozny [2]

  August 16 Benito Mussolini presents Hans-Joachim Marseille the Gold Medal of Military Valor [2]

 


Trials of the SG-122, a combination of a Soviet 122 mm howitzer and a German StuG chassis, ends. The vehicle passed trials and was accepted into service, but only 21 are produced [22]

Two US Navy #submarines, The USS Nautilus (SS 168) and USS Argonaut (SM 1), land 200 Marine Raiders on Makin Island in the first amphibious attack made from a submarine [68] August 17 The US Eighth Air Force mounts its first heavy bomber mission from the UK. Twelve Boeing B-17E Flying Fortresses of the 97th Bombardment Group bomb the marshalling yard at Rouen/Scotteville, with no aircraft lost.  [60]

 


SS Princess Marguerite (Canadian Pacific Steamships, Montreal) was torpedoed by U 83, Mediterranean, NW of Port Said, Egypt. Converted to a troopship, 55 British Soldiers were killed, of the 1124 merchant sailors & soldiers aboard. [61]


Churchill’s four-day visit to Moscow is announced [11]


HMS Furious delivered 32 Spitfire fighters to Malta; 2 lost en route [2]

2 Japanese transports arrive at Buna, Papua and disembarked reinforcements [2] August 18 Russian bombers raid Koenigsberg and Danzig. Alexander replaces Auchinleck in Middle East. [11]

 


Allied forces including 582 men of the RHLI land on the beaches of Dieppe as part of operation Julibee. Dieppe raiding force- 5000 Canadians, 1000 British, 240 ships- will test the tactics of amphibious assault for a potential future invasion of Europe. It was the RHLI’s worst day: 174 soldiers captured, 194 wounded, and 197 men made the ultimate sacrifice. Of the 6,000 or so men who land, more than half are killed, wounded or captured. It was a failure and a vital lesson for the D-Day landings 2 yrs later.[2,11,13,20,31,57,83,84, 85, 86]

  August 19  
HMC Ships PRINCE DAVID, PRINCE HENRY, PRINCE ROBERT and corvettes DAWSON & VANCOUVER begin 2 month Bering Sea Patrol, from Kodiak Alaska, supporting the recapture of the US islands of Kiska and Attu off Alaska from Japanese forces. [61]

 


Japanese troops and US Marines clash near Henderson Field, Guadalcanal [2]

August 20 Germans gain foothold across Don near Kletskaya. Russian bombers raid Warsaw. [11]
The Japanese 41st Infantry Regiment lands at Buna, Papua [2] August 21  
US and Japanese supplying destroyers make contact in the Savo Sound off Guadalcanal [2] August 22  
  August 23 The German army launches an offensive to  capture the city of Stalingrad. The fighting rages for 163 days and will cost the Axis 850,000 men… and ultimately the war. [4,35]
The Battle of the Eastern Solomons, a naval action fought between U.S. and Japanese forces in the Pacific, begins. The battle ends inconclusively but Japanese losses are heavy and their reinforcements headed for Guadalcanal are delayed [11, 57] August 24 A specially converted Supermarine Spitfire Vc operating from Alexandria in Egypt intercepts a Junkers Ju86P-2 high altitude reconnaissance aircraft at 12,800 metres (42,000 feet). The RAF pilot flew without pressurized protection at that extreme height. [60]
The battle of Milne Bay, New Guinea commences. Japanese troops land at Milne Bay, which is defended by 2 Australian brigades, U.S. engineers, and 2 RAAF squadrons. 167 Australians & 14 Americans are killed. It is the first defeat of the Japanese on land in the Pacific.

 

Japanese Special Naval Landing Forces under Cmdr Hayashi with two Type 95 “Ha-Go” 4-man tanks landed at 10.30pm near Waga Waga on the north shore, 8 km east of the intended position. The tanks caused some havoc before being bogged, abandoned, and destroyed. [11, 88, 95]

 


The third and final day Task Force 61 engages the Japanese First Carrier Division in the Eastern Solomons. [74]

August 25 German troops capture Mozdok, Russia, 50 miles west of Grozny [2]
  August 26  
  August 27 The German 16th Panzer Div pauses north of Stalingrad to wait for slower elements [2]
  August 28  
Tribal class destroyer HMAS Arunta sinks the Japanese submarine Ro-33 with all 70 crew off Port Moresby. Ro-33 had previously carried out a war crime, machine gunning survivors of the merchant ship Mamutu in PNG waters 3 weeks earlier.

 


Japanese are expelled from Milne Bay  [11]

August 29 Mosquito B.IVs from 105 Sqn carried out a low level attack on Pont à Vendin power station. On the return, they are intercepted & damaged by FW190s. [65]

 


Graduation of the first Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC) Officer Candidate School class.  436 women are commissioned as 3d Officers, the auxiliary equivalent to 2nd Lieutenant.  [91] 


German 4th Panzer Army brakes through Soviet lines 15 miles south of Stalingrad, Russia [2]


Russians enter outskirts of Rzhev. [11]

  August 30  
  August 31 The German 4th Panzer Army reaches the Stalingrad-Morozovsk railway [2]
  September 1  
  September 2

4/8th Hussars of UK 4th Armored Brgd penetrated Axis lines near Alam el Halfa, Egypt [2]


The KT (winged tank) flies for the first and last time. It turns out that even a T-60 tank is too heavy to deliver via a glider and the project is scrapped [22]

Australian 2/14th and 2/16th Battalions fall back to Myola Ridge on the Kokoda Trail [2]

September 3

SS Donald Stewart (Canada Steamship Lines, Montreal) torpedoed by U-517, S of the Strait of Belle Isle, NF, 3 killed. The Laker carried concrete, aviation fuel & lumber to build an airfield at Goose Bay. HMCShips SHAWINIGAN & TRAIL rescue 17 [61]

Japanese destroyers deliver 1,000 troops to Taivu, Guadalcanal. [2]

September 4

Russian bombers raid Budapest and points in Germany. [11]


NZ 5th Brigade and UK 132nd Brigade harrassed retreating German troops in Egypt [2]

  September 5

In a daring night attack, German U-Boat U513 enters the harbor at Conception Bay, NF, and torpedoes & sinks the merchant ships SS Lord Strathcona (Canadian) & SS Saganaga (British). 36 Sailors are killed, many homes are damaged from the explosions. [61]


German Luftwaffe blunts a Soviet counterattack at Stalingrad [2]

Milne Bay: At night the freighter Anshun is unloading cargo at Gili Gili wharf. Japanese cruiser Tenryū and destroyer Arashi entered Milne Bay and blast shore positions and the Anshun. She rolls over. The illuminated Hospital Ship Manunda is ignored by the Japanese. [95]


Australian troops attack Japanese beachhead at Waga Waga on the coast of Milne Bay [2]

September 6

Battle for Quebec-Sydney Convoy QS-33 begins. HMCShips ARROWHEAD, TRURO, RACOON, Fairmiles ML083 & ML065 escort 8 merchant ships, attacked by 2 U-boats over two days. Four merchant ships & 1 escort sunk, 46 sailors are killed & 107 survivors rescued. [61]


U-165 attacks Quebec-Sydney Convoy QS-33 east of Cap Chat in the St. Lawrence. In the U-boats opening shot, torpedo and sinks SS Aeas, two merchant sailors are killed. HMCS  ARROWHEAD picked up twenty-nine survivors. [61]


SS John A Holloway (Upper Lakes & St. Lawrence Transportation, Toronto) torpedoed and sunk by U 164 in the Caribbean, 1 killed. The Great Lakes merchant ship was pressed into ocean service during WWII. [61]


Rommel abandons efforts against El Alamein. Germans claim Novorossisk; announce the annexation of Luxemburg. [11]

Japanese troops inflict heavy casualties on Australians at Efogi on Kokoda Track [2]

September 7

While hunting the U-boat that attacked Convoy QS-33, HMCS RACCOON is torpedoed & sunk by U-165 near Grosses-Roches in the St. Lawrence River. Other convoy escorts not aware of her loss for 7 hours. There were no survivors from her ship’s company of 37 [61]


U517 attacks Quebec-Sydney Convoy QS-33 off Cap Gaspé sinking SS Oakton (Gulf & Lake Navigation Company, Montreal), SS Mount Pindus (Greece) & SS Mount Taygetus (Greece). Seven merchant sailors killed, RCN Motor Launch Q 083 rescues 78 survivors. [61]


The first group of Canadian parachute candidates prepare to jump from a Douglas C-47 aircraft at Fort Benning, Georgia, [51]

Australians fall back from Efogi on Kokoda Track after being flanked [2]

September 8  
A Japanese floatplane drops incendiary bombs on an Oregon forest, the first and only air attack on the U.S. mainland during the war [2]

 


Japanese cross Owen Stanley range. .[11]

September 9

Russian bombers raid Berlin and Budapest.[11]

  September 10

The battle for Convoy ON-127 begins. 34 merchant ships escorted by HMCShips ST CROIX, OTTAWA, AMHERST, ARVIDA, SHERBROOKE & HMS CELANDINE, attacked by 13 U-boats. 1 escort & 7 merchant ships sunk/5 damaged. 170 sailors killed/449 rescued. 4 U-boats damaged [61]


HMCS SHERBROOKE picks up 5 survivors from SS Elisabeth van Belgie (Belgium) & 39 survivors from MV Sveve (Norway), both ships torpedoed by U-96 while in Convoy ON-127. SHERBROOKE then attempts to sink Sveve with gunfire, finally scuttling the hulk. [61]


HMCS ST CROIX attacks U-659 after U-boat torpedoed SS Empire Oil (British), severely damaging U-boat, forcing sub to break off from Convoy ON-127 & return to port. ST CROIX then rescues 26 survivors from the merchant ship & OTTAWA rescues another 24. [61]


German 29th Motorized Infantry Division cuts off Soviet 64th Army south of Stalingrad [2]


British extend the occupation of Madagascar. R.A.F. raid on Duesseldorf. [11]

  September 11  

Guadalcanal. The Battle of Edson’s Ridge begins, between U.S. Marine Corps’ 1st Raider Battalion (and other Marine Corps units) and Japanese infantry [108]


6,200 Japanese troops attack near Henderson Field, starting the Battle of Bloody Ridge [2]

September 12

HMCS ARVIDA rescues 52 survivors from SS Empire Moonbeam (British) and 85 survivors from SS Hektoria (British). Both ships had been torpedoed by U-211 while in Convoy ON-127. [61]

  September 13

Operation Agreement was a failed Allied attack against Tobruk conducted on 13-14 September 1942. Hundreds of men were wounded, captured, or killed, along with several Royal Naval vessels sunk. It was nothing less than an overwhelming Axis victory [109]


HMCS OTTAWA (1st) is struck by 2 torpedoes from U-91 while escorting convoy ON-127, mid-Atlantic S of Greenland. 1st torpedo blew off bow, 2nd broke her in two. 141 RCN & 22 merchant sailors killed. 69 rescued by HMCS ARVIDA & HMS CELANDINE. [61]


While escorting Convoy ON-127, HMCS ST CROIX attacks U-411, after U-boat fired a torpedo and missed one of the other escorts. Depth Charges damage U-411, forcing U-boat to break off attack on convoy and return to port for repair. [61]


Vichy government issues compulsory labor law. R.A.F. raid on Bremen, Russia on Budapest and Ploesti [11]


Commando raids on Tobruk, Benghazi, Barce [11]


The George Cross medal is awarded to the island of Malta [2]

Japanese forces continue to attack Henderson Field at Guadalcanal without success [2]

 


American fliers raid Kiska, attack Japanese ships near Solomons [11]

September 14  

Solomon Islands. While supporting transports carrying the 7th Marine Regiment, the carrier USS Wasp is sunk by six Japanese torpedoes. 193 men lost, 366 wounded; 25 airborne planes land to the USS Hornet. 45 aircraft go down with the carrier. [108]


Japanese and Australians engaged at Ioribaiwa Ridge, 25 miles north of Port Moresby. [2]

September 15  
  September 16 The German 502nd Tank Battalion receives the first batch of Tiger I tanks [2]

 


Germans penetrate northwest outskirts of Stalingrad. R.A.F. raids on Ruhr and Wiesbaden [11]

Japanese forces reach to within 32 miles of Port Moresby [11]

 


The war in New Guinea hung in the balance for a week. Maj. Gen. Horii’s force occupied Ioribawa Ridge just 40km from Port Moresby but his overstretched  supply line snaked back to Buna-Gona. Of his 6000-strong Sth Seas Force, less than 1500 exhausted men remained [95]

September 17

Leslie Groves is given charge of Manhattan Project [2]

Japanese troops begin retreating back along the Kokoda Track [2]

September 18  
  September 19

Soviet counterattack near Kotluban is repulsed by German XIV Panzer Corps [2]

  September 20 The Nazis claim to have reached the Volga in the center of Stalingrad [11]
The prototype of the B-29 Superfortress makes its maiden flight [9, 107] September 21

The first A-36 files. These were P-51 Mustangs modified to have dive breaks and bomb racks to provide close support to ground troops [9]


Russians counter-attack northwest of Stalingrad [11]

  September 22  

The Matanikau action on Guadalcanal begins when U.S. Marines attack Japanese positions along the Matanikau River. Over the ensuing four days the Japanese successfully repulse the Americans [57]

September 23  
  September 24  
  September 25  
US Marines attack Japanese positions at Matanikau River on Guadalcanal but fail [2] September 26  
  September 27

The freighter, SS Stephen Hopkins, engages the German auxiliary cruiser, Stier, and supply ship, Tannenfels. Stier and SS Stephen Hopkins sink, Stier was sunk by naval armed guard, Lt. j.g. Kenneth M. Willett. Willett posthumously receives the Navy Cross. [74]

  September 28  
  September 29  
  September 30 Danish Resistance begins smuggling over 7000 Jews to Sweden by fishing boats
  October 1

The prototype of the Bell P-59 Airacomet makes its maiden flight [9]

Light cruiser Tenryu was hit by US bombers at Rabaul, killing 22 [2]

October 2  
  October 3

Wernher von Braun’s team successfully launches the A-4 rocket 52.5 miles above the Earth, the first vehicle to cross the Kármán line and enter space. German General Walter Dornberger marks the occasion by telling von Braun, “Today the spaceship was born.” [117]


British Commando raid on Channel Islands [11]


82d Fighter Group squadrons begin arriving at Eglington, Co Derry, Ireland from the US with P-38s

Australian force reaches Efogi in Papua.  [11]

October 4

German XIV Panzer Korps attacks the Stalingrad Tractor Factory [2]

  October 5

Major General Ivan Rukhle is arrested by the Soviet STAVKA. He was deputy chief of the headquarters of the #Stalingrad Front. He was falsely charged him with treason and would be held at Lubyanka prison near Moscow, Russia until 1952 [116]

  October 6 The German III.Panzer Korps captures Malgobek on the Terek River in the Caucasus [2]
The US Marines cross the Matanikau River on Guadalcanal to raid Japanese positions [2] October 7  

Fight at Matanikau River, Guadalcanal. This Third Battle of the Matanikau was a U.S. success: the USMC mauled a Japanese infantry regiment and disrupted their offensive by capturing assembly and artillery positions on the east bank of the Matanikau. [47]

October 8

Germans say strategic objectives reached at Stalingrad [11]

  October 9  
  October 10

The major Axis air offensive against Malta begins [2]

  October 11  
  October 12

The prototype Spitfire Mk VB floatplane makes its maiden flight [9]

  October 13  
Six Japanese destroyers land 1,000 troops on Guadalcanal [2] October 14

New German drive against northern Stalingrad. [11]


The Newfoundland passenger ferry SS Caribou is sunk by the German submarine U-69, resulting in 136 deaths, of which were 57 military personnel, 49 civilians including 10 children [119]

3,000+ Japanese troops land at Tassafaronga, Guadalcanal [2] October 15  
  October 16  
  October 17  
  October 18 Germany announces that neutral ships in Allied convoys will be sunk without warning [1]
  October 19 The Kings African Rifles regiment captures 800 Vichy French troops in Madagascar [2]
  October 20  
  October 21  
  October 22

Mark Clark begins negotiations with Vichy French commanders in North Africa [2]


HMCS MORDEN attacks U-443 after U-boat sinks Canadian Pacific passenger ship SS Winnipeg II & MV Donax mid-Atlantic. U-443 damaged & loses contact with convoy. MORDEN rescues 192 survivors from Winnipeg II. HMCS DRUMHELLER rescues 38 from Donax. [61]

  October 23

Britain launches a major offensive at El Alamein, Egypt against the German during World War II. The victory for the Allies is seen as a turning point during the European theater of World War II [116]

  October 24  
  October 25 Australian and British troops attack Point 29 southwest of Tel el Eisa, Egypt [2]
  October 26

3 Vickers Wellington bombers of No. 38 Squadron sink the Tergestea tanker off the port of Tobruk, thereby depriving Rommel of much needed fuel. A few days later he decides to retreat. A pursuing General Montgomery wrote a thank you letter to No. 38 Squadron. [13]

  October 27  
  October 28  
  October 29 German troops reach Nalchik, 50 miles away from Grozny oil fields [2]
  October 30

3 Royal Navy personnel from HMS Petard boarded sinking German U-559 to retrieve vital instruments & documents that led Bletchley Park codebreakers to crack Enigma code. Only Tommy Brown, aged 16, survived when submarine sank. All three received George Cross Medal [51, 120]

  October 31

German 21st Panzer Div launches 4 strikes against Australians at Point 29 in Egypt [2]

  November 1

HMCS RESTIGOUCHE attacks U-402 with depth charges while escorting Convoy SC-107 off Newfoundland, delaying the U-boat’s attack on the convoy. [61]

  November 2 German forces are halted 5 miles outside of Ordshonikidze, Azerbaijan [2]
  November 3  
  November 4 German 170th Division captured Feodosiya, Ukraine
  November 5 The Vichy French forces on Madagascar surrender [2]

US 7th Marine Regiment crosses the Nalimbiu River near Koli Point on Guadalcanal [2]

November 6  
  November 7  
  November 8

The Allies begin Operation Torch, landings at Algeria and Morocco, countries ruled by #Vichy France. U.S. Gen. Eisenhower orders no naval or air bombardment. Nonetheless, Vichy troops, allied with Germany, fire on the Allies [2, 11, 86, 116]

  November 9

The British informs the USSR about the new Panzer VI tank. The Red Army already faced this tank in August, but didn’t notice its appearance until January of 1943 when tanks with turret numbers 100 and 121 were captured [22]

  November 10  
  November 11 Allies make a controversial deal with Vichy French Admiral Darlan in Algiers to achieve the surrender of French forces

 


German and Italian troops occupied Vichy France


British 36th Infantry Brigade lands at Bougie, Algeria unopposed.


As World War II progresses, Congress lowers the draft age to 18 (it had been 21) and raises the high end of the draft to age 37 (it had been 36 years old) [116]

  November 12 The British 3rd Parachute Battalion captures the airfield at Bone, Algeria [2]

 


The Red Army instituted winter time vodka rations. Troops directly engaged in combat received 100 grams daily, support troops received 50 grams. All others only received vodka on holidays. Wine could be substituted if available. [22]

The five the “Fighting Sullivan Brothers” are killed when the USS Juneau is sunk during the Battle of Guadalcanal. Their death was the greatest military loss by any one U.S. family during World War II [116]


Battleship Hiei is scuttled off Savo Island [2]

November 13

The captain and crew of the USS William D. Porter are arrested and investigated for trying to assassinate President Franklin D. Roosevelt. FDR was aboard the USS Iowa when the Porter accidentally launched a torpedo at the Iowa. [116]

  November 14  
  November 15  
  November 16  
  November 17 The Italians formally absorb French Tunisia into Italian North Africa [2]
The US Army and Marines attack Japanese positions near Kokumbona on Guadalcanal [2] November 18  
  November 19

Adolf Galland is promoted to the rank of Generalmajor [2]

  November 20 British troops capture Benghazi, Libya
  November 21 German paratroopers attack British positions near Djebel Abjod, Tunisia [2]

 


HMCS BUCTOUCHE attacks U-518 with depth charges following the U-boat’s attack on Convoy ON-145, 200 miles SE of Sydney, NS. U-518 was severely damaged, unable to close #3 torpedo tube, flooding torpedo room & forcing U-boat to return to base. [61]


RCN -HMCShips TIMMINS & MINAS rescue 60 sailors from MV Empire Sailor (UK), torpedoed by U-518 while in Convoy ON-145. Loaded with phosgene bombs, mustard gas & cyanide, crew abandoned freighter immediately. 20 survivors succumbed to the phosgene gas. [61]

US Army-Marine attack at Matanikau River on Guadalcanal is stopped by Japanese November 22  
  November 23 The SPARS (Coast Guard Women’s Reserve) is founded. SPARS is an acronym for the #CoastGuard motto “Semper Paratus—Always Ready. [15]
  November 24 The US Marines advance to Poho, Guadalcanal [2]
  November 25 Adolf Hitler orders that the French fleet at Toulon, France be seized

 


General Groves selected Los Alamos, New Mexico, for a scientific laboratory to design an atomic bomb. Site was boys’ school on a mesa in Jemez Mountains. [137]

  November 26  
  November 27 The French Navy scuttles warships to avoid German capture [2]
  November 28  
  November 29 Coffee rationed to one pound every 5 weeks in the US
  November 30  
Gasoline rationing was begun . . . December 1 . . . across the US and lasted until after the end of the war

 


German 10th Panzer Division launches a counterattack in Tunisia

  December 2 British and German paratroops clash at El Fedja, Tunisia [2]
  December 3  
  December 4 The British 2nd Parachute Battalion links up with US troops near Medjez-el-Bab, Tunisia [2]
  December 5  
  December 6 811 Dutch Jews arrive at Auschwitz; 795 were gassed upon arrival [2]
  December 7  
  December 8  
US Army takes over the Guadalcanal campaign from the US Marine Corps [2]

 


Australian troops occupy Gona in New Guinea. Gona was the first of the three to fall to the allies after weeks of heavy fighting. [133]

December 9  
  December 10

The Polish government-in-exile in London publishes a report titled The Mass Extermination of Jews in German Occupied Poland [116]

  December 11

Allies launch a new offensive toward Marsa Brega and El Agheila in Libya [2]

Raizo Tanaka suffers injuries during a night time destroyer transport run [2]

December 12  
American troops capture Buna, New Guinea December 13  
Australian troops capture Gona, New Guinea [2] December 14  
  December 15  
  December 16

Himmler issues a decree ordering all Sinti & Roma in Reich Territory to be deported to Auschwitz, where a special ‘Zigeunerlager’ (‘Gypsy Camp’) was built. Of the approx. 23,000 sent to the camp, 21,000 died or were murdered in the gas chambers [49]


A Soviet offensive is launched towards Rostov-on-Don, Russia [2]

US Marines capture Mt. Austen, Guadalcanal December 17  
  December 18

Axis and Allied forces engage in a brief but fierce combat at Nofilia, Libya [2]

  December 19  
  December 20  
British troops enter Arakan Peninsula, Burma [2] December 21  
  December 22 German troops in the Caucasus region began to fall back [2]

 


During World War II, German dictator Adolf Hitler signs the order to develop the V-2 rocket [116]

  December 23 Bob Hope performs his first wartime Christmas show [15]

 


First flight of the Messerschmitt Me 264 V1 ’Amerikabomber’ (RE+EN). Long-range strategic bomber developed during World War II for the German Luftwaffe as its main strategic bomber. [8]

  December 24 French Admiral Darlan assassinated

 


Soviets launched offensive against German Armeegruppe Don near Stalingrad [2]

  December 25  
  December 26

Battle for Convoy ONS154 begins. In a 7 day running battle HMCShips ST. LAURENT, BATTLEFORD, CHILLIWACK, NAPANEE, SHEDIAC & KENOGAMI engage 21 UBoats. 14 of 46 merchant ships are lost w/ 551 sailors killed, 1 UBoat sunk. [61]


Darlan is replaced as High Commissioner in French North Africa by Giraud [2]

The Japanese Ki-67 medium bomber took its maiden flight [2] December 27 Hitler authorizes Armeegruppe A and Armeegruppe Don to withdraw 150 miles [2]

 


HMCS ST LAURENT (1st) makes several depth charge attacks on U-441 while escorting Convoy ONS-154. The U-boat is undamaged but loses contact with the convoy. [61]


HMCShips ST.LAURENT, BATTLEFORD, CHILLIWACK & NAPANEE share in the destruction of U 356 during the battle for Convoy ONS 154 in the North Atlantic. [61]


HMCS CHILLIWACK spots U-25 on the surface after the U-boat torpedoed the tanker Scottish Heather in Convoy ONS-154. Corvette attacks the submarine with Oerlikons, causing minimal damage, forcing it to crash dive and lose contact with the convoy. [61]

The Japanese 16th Division captures Luisiana, Philippines December 28

German gymnast Alfred Flatow, who won three gold medals in the 1896 Olympics in Athens and who was Jewish, dies of starvation in Theresienstadt Concentration Camp in Czechoslovakia at the age of 73 [116]


HMCS BATTLEFORD while investigating a radar contact, finds 4 U-boats on the surface preparing a concentrated attack on Convoy ONS-154. Assisted by HMCS CHILLIWACK, corvettes attack with gunfire, forcing U-664 & U-662 to lose contact with the convoy. [61]


During World War II, President Franklin D. Roosevelt tells the Los Alamos science-research team not to share atomic secrets with the British, despite the two countries being allies. [116]

  December 29  
  December 30  
  December 31

Minesweeper HMS Bramble is sunk with all hands (121 men) by German destroyer Friedrich Eckoldt after engaging a vastly superior German force of battleship Admiral Hipper and three destroyers in the Barents Sea while detached from her convoy. In the same engagement destroyer HMS Achates is sunk by German battleship Admiral Hipper. She was laying a smoke screen to protect her convoy and continued to perform this duty even after receiving heavy damage. 113 of 194 crew died [2, 137]


The Royal Navy scored a noteworthy defensive victory when British warships, including the cruiser Sheffield repulsed a superior German force attempting to attack convoy JW.51B in the Barents Sea  Captain Robert Sherbrooke earns the Victoria Cross in command of the escorts of convoy JW51B.  His ships fought off the superior German heavy cruisers & all cargo made it to Russia.  He continued to direct battle after wounding [87]

1943
  January 1

HMCS WOODSTOCK sinks MTB 105, 250 miles NW of the Azores, after the merchant ship ferrying the MTB across the Atlantic is sunk. [61]

  January 2  
  January 3 Soviet troops capture Mozdok, Russia [2]

 


Wladyslaw Raczkiewicz urged the Pope to denounce German atrocities [2]

  January 4

First flight of the Avro Anson MK V. British twin-engine, multi-role aircraft [8]

  January 5  
  January 6  
  January 7

A transport of 2,000 Jews deported by the Germans from the ghetto in Augustów arrived at Auschwitz. SS doctors sent 296 men & 125 women to the camp. 1,489 people were murdered immediately in gas chambers [6]


RCN -HMCS WEYBURN is credited with shooting down one He 111 torpedo bomber and a probable kill on a second aircraft during a 25 minute attack by German 14 aircraft on Convoy KMS-6 with OpTORCH [61]

Japanese troops again halt a British assault at Donbaik, Burma [2]

January 8  
  January 9  
  January 10  
  January 11

The Avro Lancaster Mk B.II undertakes its first operational sortie when two take part in a raid on Essen, Germany. [9]


Russians take Georgievsk, Mineralnye Vody, Pyatigorsk [11]


Soviet troops launched an offensive in the Caucasus. [2]

  January 12

BI-2 rocket-powered prototype aircraft took its second flight at Sverdlovsk [2]

US 2nd Marine Division begins a westward offensive on Guadalcanal [2]

January 13

HMCS VILLE DE QUEBEC (1st) in a lightning attack, drops a pattern of Depth Charges on ASDIC contact west of Algiers, forcing U-224 to surface. Too close for 4in gun, corvette fires 600 20mm rounds from her Oerlikon cannons & rams German U-Boat. Sinking U-224 in 10 minutes! There was one survivor. [31, 51, 61]

  January 14 Casablanca Conference of Allied leaders begins. Franklin D Roosevelt becomes the first sitting U.S. president to travel overseas by airplane when he departs Miami for the Casablanca summit in North Africa. [4]
  January 15

Construction of the Pentagon, the headquarters of the U.S. Department of Defense, in Arlington, Virginia is completed [116]

  January 16

During World War II, Iraq declares war on Germany and the Axis powers. [116]

  January 17  

The American tanker MOBILUBE is torpedoed/damaged by sub I-165 near Sydney…used as a storage barge in the Philippines..in 1947 she was taken in tow by another tanker YORBA LINDA…after 45 days and 3000 miles they arrived in San Francisco….she was later repaired [142]

January 18

The Red Army opens a narrow land corridor into the city of Leningrad, which had been besieged by Nazi Germany since September 1941. However, it would be another year until the siege – the longest in history – was lifted [35]


Another round of deportations begins in the Warsaw ghetto. Jews led by Mordechai Anielewicz resist & in April there follows an uprising. [126]

  January 19  
The US 25th Division began an offensive toward Kokumbona, Guadalcanal [2] January 20  
  January 21 The Soviets capture Voroshilovsky and Stavropol in the Caucasus region [2]
  January 22  
US 25th Division capture the high ground south of Kokumbona, Guadalcanal [2] January 23 British forces capture Tripoli

 


The last German airfield in the Stalingrad pocket is taken by Soviet troops [2]

  January 24

Nazi Germany Fuhrer Adolf Hitler refuses General Friedrich von Paulus, commander in chief of the German 6th Army, request to surrender at the Battle of Stalingrad. The battle had begun on August 23, 1942 [116]


The Casablanca Conference concludes at the Anfa Hotel. Amongst those in attendance were Franklin D. Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, and Charles de Gaulle. It resulted in the Casablanca Declaration of “unconditional surrender” of the Axis powers [2, 57]

  January 25 The remnants of the German 6. Armee are split in two pockets in Stalingrad [2]

 


During the Battle of Stalingrad, the Soviet Red Army captures the last German airfield in the city. The Germans would surrender on February 2 [116]

  January 26  
  January 27 The first U.S. daylight bombing raid against Germany occurs when U.S.  hit the U-boat pens at Wilhelmshaven Port. 64 planes participated in the raid; 53 reached their target, managing to shoot down 22 German planes. Only 3 #merican planes were lost. [4, 116]
  January 28  
US and Japanese warships engage in the Battle of Rennell Island [2] January 29 Soviet troops capture Maikop, Russia [2]

 


Russians take Kropotkin [11]

  January 30 de Havilland Mosquitos

 

from 105 & 139 Sqns attack a broadcasting station in Berlin, Germany disrupting speeches by Goring and Goebbels [9, 65]


Commander Edward Travis sets up the Newmanry at Bletchley Park. The section is created to mechanize the process of breaking German ciphers  – something that has previously been done by hand [27]


Hitler promotes General Friedrich Paulus to Field Marshall a day before Paulus surrenders at Stalingrad. Hitler reminded Paulus that not one German field marshal has ever been taken prisoner, hoping he would commit suicide [116]


Corvette HMS Samphire was torpedoed and sunk by Italian submarine Platino while on convoy escort duty off Bougie, Algeria, with the loss of 45 officers and men [137]


The Vichy Militia (Milice) is created by the Vichy French government. It was a paramilitary force created to combat the French Resistance, during WW2. Members of the Milice were subject to reprisals after the Liberation of France [116]

  January 31 Stalingrad. Two days before the surrender of German forces, Generalfeldmarschall Paulus, commander 6 Armee was captured [13, 116]

 


The bulk of the German Sixth Army surrenders at Stalingrad; last of resistance ends Feb. 2 [11]
Japanese evacuation of Guadalcanal begins February 1  
  February 2

After Nazi German General Friedrich Paulus and 22 of his generals surrender on Jan. 31, the rest of the Fourth and Sixth German armies, ~91,000 men, surrender, ending the Battle of Stalingrad. [116]

  February 3 Coffee rationing increased to one pound every six weeks in the US

 


The German OKW announces the defeat at Stalingrad, Russia [2]

  February 4 Soviet troops land near Novorossiysk in southern Russia [2]

 


U414 is attacked by a Canso aircraft form 5 (BR) Squadron RCAF flying from Gander, NF in the  North Atlantic, U-Boat severely damaged, forced to return to St. Nazaire [61]

  February 5 Colossus, the world’s 1st digital programmable computer is used for the 1st time [29]
  February 6  
  February 7  
Battle of Guadalcanal ends February 8  
  February 9  
  February 10  
  February 11  
  February 12  
The F4U-1 Corsair fighter makes their operational debut 200 miles north of Guadalcanal February 13  
  February 14 German troops attack the Americans at Sidi Bouzid, Tunisia.  [2]

 


The KV-14 assault gun is accepted into service as the SU-152. This vehicle became hugely successful, but gained fame for its anti-tank abilities rather than its intended purpose [22]

  February 15 The Americans lose 46 medium tanks in action at Sidi Bouzid, Tunisia [2]

 


The anti-Nazi White Rose members Alexander Schmorell, Hans Scholl, and Willi Graf write Down with Hitler & Freedom on the walls of Munich University and other buildings. Arrests of White Rose members by the Gestapo begin on Feb. 18 [116]

  February 16 German forces capture Sidi Bouzid and Sbeitla, Tunisia [2]

 


The Ferdinand tank destroyer introduced at Nibelungenwerke. The appearance of this vehicle at the Battle of Kursk had a big impact on Soviet tank building even though only 91 were produced [22]
  February 17  
  February 18 Goebbels announces the implementation of total war at the Berlin Sportpalast [2]

Hans Scholl and his sister, Sophie, the leaders of the German youth group Weisse Rose (White Rose), are arrested by the Gestapo, having encouraged nonviolent resistance against the Nazis. Sophie Scholl, Hans Scholl, Christoph Probs and Willi Graf are executed for distributing anti-Nazi materials. [116, 148]

  February 19  
  February 20  
  February 21  
The Northern Group of the Chindits reaches Tonmakeng, Burma [2] February 22  
  February 23 The inexperienced Americans suffer a major defeat at the Battle for Kasserine Pass [2]
  February 24 German and Italian troops defeat American troops at Kasserine Pass in Tunisia
  February 25 The inexperienced Americans suffer a major defeat at the Battle for Kasserine Pass in North Africa
  February 26  
  February 27  
  February 28  
US aircraft sink many Japanese ships at the Battle of Bismarck Sea and strafed survivors [2] March 3  
US aircraft sink the destroyer Tokitsukaze and other ships at the Battle of the Bismarck Sea [2] March 4  
  March 9 Yekaterina Budanova shoots down a Bf 109 fighter, sharing the credit with other pilots [2]
Claire Chennault is promoted to the rank of major general [2] March 10  
  March 11 BI-3 rocket-powered prototype aircraft took its first flight at Sverdlovsk [2]
Japanese troops end their assault on American forces at Hill 700 on Bougainville [2] March 13  
  March 14 Germans recapture Kharkov, Ukraine [2]
IGHQ issues the Joint Army-Navy Central Agreement on Southeast Asia Operation order [2] March 15  
  March 17 US troops capture Gafsa, Tunisia
  March 22 German SS men massacre civilians in the Byelorussian village of Khatyn [2]
  March 23 US troops repulse German 10th Panzer Div counterattack at El Guettar, Tunisia
  March 27 German tanks stop the British offensive at El Hamma, Tunisia [2]
  March 30 British troops led by Montgomery breach the Mareth Line in North Africa
  March 31 Crematorium 2 begins operation at Auschwitz Concentration Camp in occupied Poland [2]
  April 3 The US 1st Inf Division captures Hill 369 near El Guettar, Tunisia
  April 4 Soviet troops launch the Taman Offensive Operation [2]
  April 7 Bolivia joins the United Nations [11]
  April 10 The Allies continue Operation Flax offensives over the waters between Sicily and Tunisia [2]
  April 12 The British 8th Army captures Sousse, Tunisia [2,11]

 


Stalin informs Churchill of his delight to see German industry in shambles [2]

  April 14 The Soviet 14th Army pushes back a German thrust southeast of Leningrad [2]
  April 15 First P-47 in aerial combat. The 800-mile combat range-extended Allied fighter coverage deep into mainland Europe from Britain.
US fighters intercept Isoroku Yamamoto over Bougainville, killing him [2] April 18  
  April 19 The Eighth Army attacks the Enfidaville line. [11]
  April 21 Joseph Stalin signs the order to create GUKR SMERSH [2]
  April 22 The final Allied assault began against remaining Axis forces in North Africa [2,11]
U.S. warships shell Attu. [11] April 24  
  April 26 RAF bombers conduct a raid against Duisburg, Germany [11]
  April 29 German troops fall back to Lake Garaet Anchkel west of Bizerte, Tunisia [2]

 


An Upkeep bomb drop is conducted successfully in southeastern Britain [2]

  April 29  
US Office of Price Administration ends meat rationing. May 3 Exception is for steak and choice beef (rationing is tightened again later)

 


US troops capture Mateur, Tunisia [2,11]


Germans driven from Krimsk in Kuban sector [11]

  May 5 Soviet troops capture Krymsk in southern Russia [2]
  May 6 British take Massicault, break Axis defense in Tunisia [11]
Japanese troops capture Anxiang, Hunan Province, China [2] May 7 Allies take Tunis and Bizerta [11]
Japanese troops capture Maungdaw, Burma May 8  
  May 12 The Trident Conference began in Washington, DC, United States [2]
  May 13 Axis forces in North Africa surrender

 


B-17 Hells Angels became the first aircraft to complete 25 combat missions. [1]

  May 14  
  May 15  
  May 16-17 British RAF fly ‘Dam Buster‘ mission against dams in the Ruhr valley. Two of the Ruhr region dams in Germany were breached by British bombers. [26]

 


The Nazis violently crush the Warsaw Ghetto uprising and leave the ghetto area in ruins. Surviving residents are deported to concentration camps or killing centers [49]

  May 17 Two of the Ruhr region dams in Germany are breached by British bombers [2]
The Japanese 3rd Division captures Songzi, Hubei Province, China [2] May 18  
  May 19  
  May 20  
  May 21  
Shigeru Fukudome is named the chief of staff of the Japanese Navy Combined Fleet [2] May 22  
  May 23  
US troops mop up the final Japanese opposition groups in the Aleutian Islands May 24  
  May 25  
  May 26  
  May 27 Churchill meets with Allied leaders in Algeria to plan the invasion of Sicily and the Italian campaign
USS Sunfish shells a Japanese oil refinery at Fais, Caroline Islands [2] May 28  
Japanese and Chinese troops clash in Hubei and Hunan Provinces, China [2] May 29  
  May 30  
  May 31  
  June 1  
  June 2 USAAF 99th Fighter Squadron makes its combat debut with its P-40L fighters in Italy [2]
  June 3  
  June 4  
  June 5 Italian warships at Spezia bombed [11]
  June 6  
  June 7  
Battleship Mutsu suffers a fatal accidental explosion [2] June 8  
  June 9  
  June 10  
  June 11  
  June 12 Germans liquidate the Jewish Ghetto in Berezhany in Ukraine, killing 1180 [2]
US officers begin planning for a New Georgia invasion [2] June 13  
Fighting in the Solomons is transferred  to the Southwest Pacific command [2] June 14  
  June 15 King George visits troops in North Africa [11]
New Georgia invasion is scheduled to take place on 30 Jun 1943 [2] June 16  
  June 17  
  June 18  
  June 19  
  June 20  
  June 21 Himmler orders the liquidation of Jewish ghettos in Soviet territory controlled by Germany [2]
  June 22 Stutthof Concentration Camp conducted its first gassing [2]
  June 23  
  June 24  
  June 25 The construction of the gas chamber and crematorium III was completed at the German Nazi Auschwitz II-Birkenau camp. It had 210 sq. meters gas chamber and five 3-muffled crematoria ovens that could burn up to 1440 corpses per 24-hours [6]
The USS Runner fails to report in while patrolling waters off Japan [2] June 26  
  June 27 The hydroelectric dams in the Ruhr region damaged by Dambuster Raid return to full capacity [2]
  June 28 The Allies take Nicosia and Agira [11]
  June 29  
  June 30  
  July 1  
Major General Nobuji pledges further funding for Japanese atomic project [2] July 2  
  July 3  
  July 4  
Captain Takeo Taizuka is named the commanding officer of light carrier Hosho [2] July 5 Germans open drive on Kursk [11]
  July 6 Konstantin Rokossovsky launches a failed counterattack north of Kursk [2]
  July 7  
  July 8  
The US 1st Raider Battalion attacks the island of Enogai [2] July 9 Allied forces invade Sicily
  July 10 Allied troops invaded Sicily, Italy [2,11]
  July 11 Allies take Ragusa, Agrigento, and Lentini [11]
  July 12  
  July 13  
  July 14  
  July 15  
  July 16  
The US Army and Marines jointly launch an offensive on New Georgia [2] July 17  
  July 18 The US Seventh Army troops capture Caltanisetta, Sicily, Italy [2]
  July 19 Rome is attacked from the air for the first time [2,11]
  July 20 Italian troops surrender en masse to US troops in Sicily, Italy [2]
  July 21  
  July 22  
  July 23 Soviet forces launch the Belgorod-Bogodukhov Offensive Operation [2]
  July 24 King Vittorio Emanuele III orders Mussolini arrested [2]

 


Operation Gomorrah creates one of the largest firestorms raised by the Royal Air Force and United States Army Air Forces in WW2 killing 42,600 civilians and wounding 37,000 in Hamburg and virtually destroying most of the city [13]

  July 25  
  July 26  
  July 27  
  July 28 Coffee removed from rationing in the US
  July 29  
  July 30  
  July 31  
  August 1 177 American bombers hit the Nazi-controlled Ploesti oil fields of Romania. More than 100 planes are lost or damaged in the raid. [4]
A Japanese destroyer slams into PT Boat 109. The American vessel’s 26-yr-old skipper, John F Kennedy, keeps the surviving crewmen alive following the ramming. The tale of heroism will later propel the young officer into politics [4] August 2 Jewish inmates of the German Death Camp of Treblinka revolt trying to destroy the facility and escape [55]
  August 3 Italian troops begin evacuation of Sicily, Italy [2]

 


George Patton slaps Charles Kuhl for perceived cowardice [2]

  August 4  
  August 5  
  August 6 Allies take Troina [11]

 


The trials of four prototype SPGs are completed in the USSR. The SU-85 with the D-5S gun is accepted into service, forcing out even the improved SU-122 [22]

  August 7 Allies take Adrano. Milan, Turin, and Genoa bombed [11]

 


Near Adrano in Sicily: the 36 Brigade with 6 RWK & E Surreys enter Adrano without opposition [58]

  August 8  
  August 9  
  August 10 George Patton berates Private Paul Bennett for cowardice [2]

 


The SU-76M (SU-15M) begins after the SPG was already accepted and enters mass production. The design was not just more reliable than the SU-12 (SU-76), but more comfortable for the crew [22]

Opening of Quebec conference [11] August 11  
  August 12  in Sicily: 0230 38 Brigade attack begins on the high ground east of Maletto  [58]
Japanese IGHQ orders the abandonment of central Solomons [2] August 13 Allies take Randazzo. The second raid on Rome. Day raid on Wiener Neustadt from Africa. Russians take Spas Demensk. [11]
  August 14  
Allies occupy Kiska in Aleutians. [11] August 15 Russians take Karachev. [11]
Infantrymen of the 13th Infantry Brigade Group disembark on Kiska, Aleutian Islands as part of Operation COTTAGE [51]

 


The USS Intrepid is commissioned in Norfolk, VA [78]

August 16 The Soviets launch an attack toward Stalino (now Donetsk), Ukraine [2]
Launching ceremony of carrier Wasp, Bethlehem Steel Company shipyard, Quincy, Massachusetts, United States [77] August 17 The First Quebec Conference is convened in Canada, just as the Allied campaign in Sicily comes to an end [35]

 


Raid by Bomber Command on the island town of Peenemünde in the Baltic Sea. The raid known as Operation Hydra takes place on the night of 17/18 Aug  and strikes at the heart of the German Army’s research centre [79]


General Patton famously beats his rival, British Field Marshal Montgomery, into Messina, Sicily. [4]


60 American bombers are shot down in raids on German aircraft factories in Schweinfurt and Regensburg. Up to this point in the war, no U.S. air mission had suffered such heavy losses. [4]


The Allies enter Messina; end of Sicilian campaign. [11]

  August 18 Trials of the Medium Tank M4A4 were completed in the USSR. The tank was deemed inferior to the M4A2 and the army elected to wait until more M4A2 tanks were available [22]
  August 19  
  August 20  
  August 21 George Patton apologizes to Private Paul Bennett whom he slapped for cowardice [2]
  August 22 Patton apologizes to doctors and nurses who witnessed him slapping enlisted men [2]
  August 23 Russians take Khaarkov. [11]
  August 24 Quebec Conference ends. German troops occupy Copenhagen [11]

 


Trials of the KV-85 end. The tank armed with an 85 mm D-5T gun is shown to be an effective interim weapon against German heavy tanks [22]

  August 25  
  August 26 Maximilian von Weichs is made the commanding officer of German Armeegruppe F [2]
  August 27 Russians take Sievsk [11]

 


The first shipment of T-80 tanks to end users is made. The T-80 partially replaces T-70 tanks in two independent tank regiments. Both regiments fight in support of cavalry. [22]

  August 28  
The USS Seahorse attacks a Japanese convoy in failure [2] August 29 Germans impose martial law on Denmark [11]
  August 30 Bernard Montgomery hosts a victory celebration at Catania, Sicily, Italy [2]
  August 31  
  September 1  
  September 2

Abakumov suggested trying captured German officers at Stalingrad as war criminals [2]

  September 3 Allied forces invade Italy [2]
  September 4  

The 2/4th Australian Field Regiment Art’y support the US 503 Parachute Infantry Regiment at Tsili Tsili, New Guinea, for the 65km trip to Nadzab, beyond the large Japanese bastion at Lae. This was the first time an Australian unit was dropped by parachute into combat. [95]

September 5  
  September 6

The Russians take Konotop and Slavyansk [11]

  September 7  
  September 8 Gen. Dwight Eisenhower publicly announces the unconditional surrender of Italy to the Allies. [2, 11]

 


The Russians take Stalino [11]

  September 9

The Henschel 293 radio controlled glider bomb was used with great effect by the Luftwaffe in th Salerno area, Italy [13]


Allied forces invade Salerno, Italy with Operation Avalanche. The Allies take Taranto. The 36th Infantry Division enteres combat for the first time at Salerno Italy. Harry Brown, a writer with Yank Magazine wrote a book entitled “A Walk in the Sun” later made into a movie, it was based on the experiences of soldiers with the 36th Inf. Div.  [11, 104]


The Russians take Bakhmach. [11]

  September 10

The Russians take Mariupol. [11]


The Detroit Tank Arsenal begins to shift from producing the M4A4 to the M4A6. Production of this tank was short lived, and the factory soon switched to the “vanilla” M4 instead [22]


The British 4th Parachute Brigade reaches Massafra, Italy. [2]

The remaining Italian fleet sails into Malta and surrenders to the Allies

  September 11 German forces occupy Rome and Northern Italy, taking most of the Italian army prisoner

 


The British 1st Airborne Division captures Brindisi and Bari, Italy without resistance [2]

  September 12 German Luftwaffe and SS personnel rescue Mussolini from Gran Sasso, Italy. [2]
  September 13  
  September 14  

Japanese abandoned Lae, Australian New Guinea [2]

September 15  
Allies take Lae, occupy Bari. Landings on Kos, Leros, Samos [11] September 16 Russians take Novorossisk, Lozovaya, Romny, Novgorod-Seversky.  [11]
  September 17 The British 5th Infantry Division reaches Sapri, Italy. [2]

 


Russian forces take Briansk and Ossipenko [11]

First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt visits one of the many bakeries on Santo as part of her visit to the island. That visit was one leg of a huge goodwill tour she undertook during WWII visiting Australia, New Zealand and many South Pacific Islands. [89]

September 18

Russians take Pavlograd [11]

Australian troops launch an offensive in Ramu Valley, New Guinea [2] September 19 Russian forces take Yartsevo, Priluki, Krasnograd [11]
  September 20

While conducting daylight reconnaissance of the Bay of Naples to investigate German shore battery activity on the Sorrento Peninsula, U.S. Navy Motor Torpedo Boats PT 204 and PT 209 are showered with water from near-hits but escape damage. [74]


Allies take Potenza, announce landings on Corsiea. Russians take Velizh [11]

  September 21-28 After Italy surrenders, Italian troops on the island of Cephalonia, Greece refused to surrender their weapons to the Germans. The Massacre of the Acqui Division, also known as the Cephalonia Massacre, was the mass execution of the men of the Italian 33rd Infantry Division Acqui by German troops. About 5,000 soldiers were massacred and others drowned.

 


Russians take Chernigov [11]

  September 22 The British 78th Infantry Division begins to arrive at Bari, Italy [2]
  September 23

Russians take Poltava. Mannheim-Ludwigshafen bombed. [11]

  September 24

U536 enters Baie des Chaleurs waiting off Pointe de Maisonette for UBoat POW’s from Camp 30 in Bowmanville. RCMP foiled escape & RCN laid a trap to capture/sink sub. U536 escaped by hugging the coast on 28 Sept after getting caught in a fishing net. [61]

Pres. Franklin D. Roosevelt dedicates MCIW Pendleton CA in honor of WWI Major General Joseph H. Pendleton. The base would become the Corps’ largest West Coast expeditionary training facility.  [54]

September 25

Russians take Smolensk and Roslavl [11]

Operation Jaywick by 14 British and Australian commandos culminates in the attack on Japanese ships in Singapore harbor sinking or severely damaging 7 vessels September 26  
  September 27 US 8th Air Force P-47 fighters escort bombers into Germany for the first time

 


The British 78th Infantry Division captures the major airfield complex near Foggia, Italy [2]

  September 28

Allies take Nocera [11]

  September 29  
  September 30

German troops began evacuating Naples [2]

  October 1 German troops begin evacuating Naples. US 8th Fifth Army and British X Corps enters Naples, Italy [2]

 


Allies take Naples. Day raid on Munich from African bases. Night raid on Hagen [11]


The Fairey Firefly enters service when No. 1770 Naval Air Squadron at RNAS Yeovilton receive their first deliveries of the Mk I. [9]

  October 2

Allies take Finschhafen. Day raid on Emden, night on Munich. [11]


German government orders the deportation of Danish Jews [2]

  October 3 British Commandos land at  Termoli on the Adriatic coast of Italy as part of Operation Devon.

 


Germans recapture Kos. Night raid on Kassel [11]

Construction begins on the first nuclear reactor at Hanford Site of Manhattan Project [2]

October 4 Aircraft from the USS Ranger attack German ships in Norway sinking two and damaging several others.
  October 5 The German 16th Panzer Div nearly wipes out the British bridgehead on near Termoli, Italy [2]
A force of three U.S. destroyers attacked nine Japanese destroyers in the central Solomons. This is known as the “Battle of Vella Lavella,” and was the last significant Japanese victory of WWII October 6-7  
Japanese execute all 98 US civilian construction POWs on Wake Island in reprisal for US air raids October 7

RAF aircraft bomb Stuttgart, Germany [2]

  October 8  
  October 9  
  October 10  
  October 11  
The First Major Attack on Rabaul. Over 100 B-25s from the 345th and 38th Bomb Groups, three P-38 squadrons, 40 planes from the 3rd Bomb Group, and more than 80 B-24s from the 90th and 43rd Bomb Groups joined forces with RAAF P-40s, Beaufighters, and Beauforts. October 12

Britain announces acquisition of bases in Azores from Portugal [11]

  October 13

Former Nazi ally Italy declares war on Germany during World War II. As a result, Adolf Hitler orders the launching of Operation Axis, the occupation of Italy, on the same day. [116]

  October 14

Jewish prisoners at the Sobibor extermination camp begin an armed revolt. About 300 prisoners who were in the resistance group killed several guards and escaped. Most were captured and murdered [118]


Russians capture Zaporozhe. Allies take Vinchiaturo and Campobasso. [11]


US bombers attack Schweinfurt ball bearing plants; 77 were shot down [2, 11]

USS Tang is commissioned into service [2]

October 15  
  October 16  

USMC squadns VMF-214 and VMF-221 attack Kahili Field, destroying 2 Japanese fighters [2]

October 17

Russians announce breakthrough below Kremenchug, another at Loyev [11]

US B-25 bombers attack Rabaul with heavy losses [2]

October 18  

USMC squadron VMF-214 attacks Kara, Kahili, and Ballale airfields, causing only minor damage [2]

October 19

US Fifth Army is stalled by poor weather in Italy [2]

  October 20

Hitler inspects the Jagdpanzer IV and gives it a green light. This was the fifth medium class fixed casemate vehicle armed with a 75 mm L/48 gun produced in Germany. [22]

  October 21  
  October 22

U537 lands a German automatic weather station, code named Kurt in Martin Bay, Labrador. It transmits weather reports for several days before failing. Found in 1977 by a civilian archaeology team and is now on display at the @CanWarMuseum [61]

  October 23

The Germans kill 300 men dragged from the Gestapo Pawiak prison after the Warsaw ghetto has been destroyed. [55]


Russians take Melitopol [11]

  October 24  

US bombers attack Lakunai Airfield at Rabaul [2]

October 25

Russians take Dniepropetrovsk [11]

  October 26  
  October 27

Bernard Montgomery restarts the British offensive on the eastern shore of Italy [2]

US Marines land on Shortland and Choiseul in the Solomons as a diversion from the upcoming Bougainville landings October 28  
The Japanese execute 33 interned civilians in Hong Kong

 


Allied forces land on Mono and Stirling Islands, south of Bougainville, beginning the final phase of the campaign to smash Japan’s northern Solomons bases

October 29  
  October 30

Allies announce capture of Mondragone [11]

  October 31

US Fifth Army resumes the stalled offensive north of the Volturno River in Italy. [2]

US 3rd Marine Div lands on Bougainville in the Solomons at Empress Augusta Bay November 1  
The USAAF attacks the Japanese base at New Britain in what was known as “Bloody Tuesday”. 45 airmen were lost with Eight B-25s and nine P-38s shot down during the attack. November 2

The German Maus settled into the form we know today. One prototype was due by the end of the year and mass production was to begin in 1944, but Bomber Command put a serious dent in these plans [22]

  November 3 British 78th Inf Div reached San Salvo north of the Trigno River in Italy.

 


US Eighth Air Force sends 566 B-17’s and B-24’s along with 333 P-47’s and 45 P-38’s to hit Wilhelmshaven, its first mission of over 500 bombers.


Nazis massacre 18,000 Jewish slave laborers outside Majdanek concentration camp in the largest single-day, single-location killing of the Holocaust


Soviet troops launch a massive breakout attack from their bridgehead north of Kiev


German dictator Adolf Hitler issues Fuhrer Directive No. 51, providing for the framework of the defense of Fortress Europe, as he now saw greater risk from an expected Allied invasion of Western Europe than from the Eastern Front [116]

  November 4 US Fifth Army captures Isernia, Italy [2]

 


The 8th AF continues to grow with today’s arrival of the 446th Bomb Group at Flixton with B 24s. This is the 31st US bomb unit to arrive in the UK.

Aircraft from the USS Saratoga attack the Japanese ships in Rabaul, damaging nearly all and forcing them to leave for repairs.  [2] November 5 8th AF flies over heavily defended Gelsenkirchen and Munster in the Ruhr Valley. The mission includes 323 B 17s escorted by over 350 fighters.

 


Axis Italy bombs Vatican City during World War II. Their goal was to take out the Vatican Radio, which was suspected of sending messages to the Allies [116]

  November 6

Soviet troops liberate Kiev. In 1939 Kiev’s 224,236 Jews comprised 26.5% of the city’s total population, but after German occupation led to Jewish refugees fleeing, massacres at nearby Babi Yar & other turmoil, today the cities Jewish population stands at c.18,000. [11, 126]

SB2C Helldiver aircraft saw combat for the first time in the Solomon Islands

 


More than 300 aircraft consisting of US carrier and land-based Navy aircraft, bombers of the US Fifth & Thirteenth Air Force, and the Royal Australian Air Force raid the Japanese base at Rabaul

November 11  
  November 16 The power station at Rjukan, Norway where the Germans were producing ‘heavy water’ for their nuclear program is bombed by the 8th Air Force and damaged sufficiently to stop production
Australian 9th Division launches an offensive to take Sattelberg, New Guinea November 17  
The Chinese 57th Division captures Changde, Hunan Province, China [2] November 18

RAF Bomber Command launches Operation Berlin [2]

  November 19

German SS and local auxiliaries liquidate the Janowska concentration camp in Lemberg, western Ukraine. It is estimated that more than 6,000 Jews were murdered after a failed mass escape attempt. [57]


U648 Attacked by Sunderland W6031 “G” from 422 Squadron @RCAF_ARC mid-Atlantic. Aircraft severely damaged by return fire from U-Boat and messaged they were going to ditch an hour later. No trace of the Sunderland or its 11 aircrew was found. [61]


HMCS Calgary, HMCS Snowberry, and HMS Nene defended their convoy from a wolfpack attack northeast of the Azores, ultimately sinking U-536 at 0247 the following morning with depth charges and gunfire. [51]


Germans retake Zhitomir. Allies cross Sangro [11]

US Marines land on Betio Island in Tarawa Atoll in the Gilbert Islands November 20 British Eighth Army launches the main offensive to cross Sangro River in Italy

 


HMCShips CALGARY (1st), SNOWBERRY & HMS NENE attack and sink German submarine U536 with Depth Charges & gunfire, north of the Azores [61]

Battle of Tarawa November 20-23  
  November 21 The RAF creates No. 1426 (Enemy Aircraft) Flight “the Rafwaffe” to evaluate captured enemy aircraft

 


German Field Marshal Erwin Rommel is placed in command of Atlantic Wall defenses in France to defend against an Allied invasion

  November 22 The RAF launches the first 2000-ton night raid on Berlin—2000 Germans are killed and the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church is destroyed

 


Lebanon’s Independence Day: Free French provisionally recognize Lebanese independence


Sextant Conference begins in Cairo, Egypt with Franklin Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, and Chiang Kai-shek


During the Soviet counter-attack against the Germans at Stalingrad, known as Operation Uranus, German General Friedrich Paulus sends Hitler a telegram stating that the Wehrmacht is surrounded. Paulus surrenders on January 31 [116]


U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, and Chinese Premier Chiang Kai-shek meet at Cairo in Egypt to discuss the war against Japan. They agree “to procure the unconditional surrender of Japan.” [57]


2,300 tons of explosives are dropped in Berlin, Germany [2]


Alkett and Siemens factories in Berlin are hit hard by Allied bombers. The Maus prototype stationed at Alkett survived, but not the means to build it. Despite many modern fantasies, the Maus could not be mass produced. [22]

US Marines secure Betio in Tarawa Atoll. Japanese resistance ends on Tarawa and Makin atolls in the Gilbert Islands. November 23  
Australians take Sattelberg, New Guinea November 25 Colossus Computer is first tested in Birmingham, England, the world’s first all-electric computer. It was used at Bletchley Park to help decypher German codes.
  November 26 The Me 262 was demonstrated at Insterburg; Hitler insisted it be converted a bomber [2]
  November 28 Eureka Conference begins in Tehran, Iran: Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin agree to a spring 1944 invasion of western Europe and a Soviet declaration of war on Japan after Germany’s defeat.
  November 29 British troops capture Mezzagrogna and Santa Maria in Italy
  November 30 British troops capture Fossacesia, Italy [2]
  December 1 US Ninth Air Force P-51s fly a sweep over France as the first use of US P-51 Mustang fighter planes in Europe

 


Mussolini orders arrest of all Jews in Italy, but many are hidden by Italians

  December 2 Luftwaffe bombs Bari, Italy, destroying 24 Allied ships. Bombs strike a US ship carrying secret chemical weapons. A cloud of deadly mustard gas spreads throughout the damaged ships killing service personnel and Italian civilians. About 1000 soldiers, sailors & civilians are killed in the attack.

 


The German 26th Panzer Div fortified Orsogna, Italy on the Gustav Line [2]

  December 3 New Zealand troops attack Orsogna, Italy on the Gustav Line [2]
  December 4  
  December 5  
  December 6 The US Fifth Army captures Monte Carnino, Italy [2]
  December 7  
  December 8 In their first combat action for the Allies, Italian troops attack Monte Lungo, Italy. They are repelled with heavy casualties.

 


Colossus, the world’s first-ever digital programmable electronic computer, built by British Telecoms research engineers Tommy Flowers and team, goes live for the first time ever at the GPO research station at Dollis Hill in London

US airfield opens at Torokina on Bougainville in the Solomon Islands, only 220 miles from major Japanese base at Rabaul. December 9 Canadian troops capture San Leonardo, Italy

 


Russians take Znamenka [11]


British Eighth Army secures Moro River beachhead near Ortona, Italy

  December 10 The British Eighth Army takes Vino Ridge in Italy in the drive for Ortona
  December 11

Canadian troops suffered heavy casualties in The Gully region in Italy [2]

  December 12 Field Marshal Erwin Rommel named commander of German Army Group B in France
Ration books in the US December 13 are awarded an extra two red ration points (used for meat, cheese & fats) are awarded for each pound of used cooking fats turned in
US Army Air Force decides to stop using camouflage paint on planes December 14 to increase speed & range
  December 15

Indian troops secured positions between Ortona and Orsogna in Italy. [2]

  December 16  
  December 17 US Fifth Army takes San Pietro, Italy, after Germans retreat

 


Wings are first awarded to WASPs (Women’s Airforce Service Pilots)

  December 18  
  December 19  
  December 20  
  December 21  
  December 22 Allies officially recognize and agree to support Marshal Tito’s partisans in Yugoslavia.
  December 23  
  December 24 New Zealand troops engage in combat along the Gustav Line in Italy [2]
  December 25  
US Marines land at Cape Gloucester, New Britain in the Solomon Islands

 


Fletcher-class destroyer USS BROWNSON lost off of Cape Gloucester, New Britain Island, Bismark Archipelago. Struck by two bombs from a Japanese Aichi D3A Type 99 dive bomber [135]
December 26 In the Battle of the North Cape off Norway, British ships sink German battlecruiser Scharnhorst while it’s attacking Allied Arctic convoys

 


Indian troops capture Villa Grande, Italy. [2]

  December 27

Air Chief Marshal Tedder was made Deputy Supreme Commander under Eisenhower [2]

  December 28 Adolf Hitler orders the demolition of the Wehrwolf HQ in Ukraine [2]

 


Troops from Canada’s 1st Infantry Division liberate the Italian city of Ortona. The victory marks the end of the Allies’ “Bloody December.” [4]

 


Capt Harold T. W. Grant, RCN while commanding RN cruiser HMS ENTERPRISE engages 5 German destroyers & 6 torpedo boats with HMS GLASGOW in the Bay of Biscay. Sinking 3 & damaged 4 others. Grant received the Distinguished Service Order for this action. [61]

  December 29

Supreme Commander of Allied Forces in Europe General Dwight D. Eisenhower cabled an order to all of the Allied Commanders directing them to, as far as possible, avoid attacking the historic monuments of Italy. [128]

British & Indian forces launch the Second Arakan Campaign toward Akyab, Burma

 


Subhas Chandra Bose declares independent India at Port Blair, Andaman Islands [2]

December 30  
  December 31  
1944
  January 1

Mark Clark becomes the commander of US Fifth and Seventh Armies [2]

USMC 7th Rgmt engages Japanese at Suicide Creek near Cape Gloucester, New Britain [2]

January 2  
  January 3

The Red Army crossed the pre-WW2 Polish eastern border in the village of Sarny. Polish GovernmentIn Exile reacted, declaring the Home Army’s co-operation with the Soviets, and expressed hope that the rights of Poles would be respected. [55]

  January 4  
  January 5  
  January 6 James Doolittle orders fighters of USAAF Eighth Air Force to go on the offensive

 


The Red Army crosses the pre-war Polish border and captures the town of Rokitno during World War II [116]

  January 7

Frigate HMS Tweed is torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U-305 in the eastern Atlantic approximately 700 miles west of Land’s End. 83 of her 127 complement were lost [137]

  January 8 The Pz.Kpfw.38(t)-18 tank destroyer was approved. Initially, it was supposed to weigh only 13 tons, but the final Jagdpanzer 38(t) design weighted 16 tons, which had a negative impact on performance [22]

 


The trial for Count Ciano began at Castel Vecchio, Italy. [2]

Indian 5th Division captures Maungdaw, Burma [2] January 9  
  January 10  
  January 11 The US 8th Air Force launches over 600 bombers against German cities [2]

 


Franklin D. Roosevelt’s delivers his third  State of the Union Address since America’s entry into WW2. “We have joined with like-minded people in order to defend ourselves in a world that has been gravely threatened with gangster rule.” [4]

  January 12

The first production Gloster Meteor F.1 flies [9]

  January 13 Allied troops capture the high ground north of Cervaro, Italy
  January 14 Eligibility for the draft is restored for Japanese-American Nisei, causing mixed reactions in internment camps

 


Russians take Kalinkovichi and Mozyr, open Leningrad drive [11]

  January 15 The German XIV Panzer Corps abandons Monte Trocchio, Italy [2]
Japanese on New Britain in the Solomons fail in their final counterattack attempt [2] January 16  
US Army and Marines secure Arawe area on New Britain in the Solomons January 17 British X Corps crosses lower Garigliano River in Italy, officially beginning the Battle of Cassino
  January 18  
  January 19  
  January 20  
  January 21 The “Little Blitz” begins, a new German air offensive on England: 447 bombers attack London at night, the largest air raid since July 1942
  January 22 The War Refugee Board is established to help resettle European Jews in the US

 


36,000 US and British troops land at Anzio, Italy, and establish a solid beachhead with little opposition; the towns of Anzio and Nettuno are secured [2]

Australians take Shaggy Ridge in the Finisterre Mountains of New Guinea, securing Huon Peninsula January 23  
  January 24 German bombers sink British hospital ship St. David off Anzio with Hs-293 guided missile; 96 killed, including 2 British nurses
  January 25  
Argentina severs relations with Germany and Japan January 26 After a vast Axis spy ring is uncovered in the country
  January 27

The Soviet Union announces that the German siege of Leningrad, which lasted 880 days and resulted in over 600,000 killed, is over. [116]

  January 28  
  January 29

Light cruiser HMS Spartan is sunk by a Henschel Hs 293 glider bomb in Anzio Bay while operating in support of the Allied landings at Anzio. She sank one hour after the bomb hit: 46 officers and men lost their lives [137]

  January 30

Destroyer HMS Hardy is torpedoed by German submarine U-278 in the Barents Sea and severely damaged. She could not be salvaged and was scuttled by HMS Venus. 35 of her crew lost their lives [137]

Americanforces land on Kwajalein and Majuro atolls in the Marshall Islands January 31  
  February 1  
  February 2  

American troops invade and take control of the Marshall Islands, long used by the Japanese as a military base. [35]

February 3  
Japanese open offensive against Indian troops on Arakan, Burma

 


US secures Kwajalein and Majuro Islands in Kwajalein Atoll

February 4  
  February 5 The Colossus Computer at Bletchley Park in England is first used to decode German messages

 


US forces reach the outskirts of Cassino, Italy

  February 6 Soviet troops make a major breakthrough in the Ukraine and reach the Dnieper River near Nikopol

 


Fighter planes of the US Eighth Air Force are out on first ground strafing mission

US forces secure Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands February 7  
  February 8  
  February 9  
  February 10  
  February 11 The Russian Army takes Shepetovka, the rail center west of Kiev in the Ukraine
  February 12  
  February 13  
  February 14 Harold Alexander visits the Allied beachhead at Anzio, Italy [2]
Military of New Zealand occupy the Green Islands, only 100 miles from the important Japanese base at Rabaul February 15  
  February 16 The Germans launch “Fischfang” offensive at Anzio; it is the first use of German Panther tanks in the west. It fails due to muddy terrain
Troops of the U.S. 22nd Marine Regiment begin to land on Engebi Island, facing 3,500 Japanese defenders beginning the Battle of Eniwetok February 17  

US Marines hit the beach at Eniwetok Island. They would be victorious after two days of nearly constant fighting. The battle secured an important airfield and harbor for continued offensive operations in the Pacific. [128]

February 18 Hitler dissolves the Abwehr (German military intelligence) after evidence of infiltration by Allied agents and resistance members

 

The RAF launches Operation Jericho. Mosquitos & Typhoons bomb the German prison in Amiens that is holding members of the French resistance. Of the 1000 prisoners, 102 are killed and 258 escape


Light cruiser HMS Penelope is torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U-410 as she leaves Naples for her operational area at Anzio. She was struck by two torpedoes and sank very quickly. From 623 on board 417 died [137]

The Japanese air & naval base at Rabaul is neutralized by Allied forces. The last of the Japanese planes have been moved to Truk February 19  
  February 20 Norwegian Resistance fighters blow up ferry Hydro carrying the only German shipment of heavy water (for atomic bomb) on Lake Tinnsjø, Norway

 


US Airforce launches the Big Week, sending 970 bombers against German cities. This week-long aerial attack devastates the German aircraft industry; 6000 sorties by bombers of RAF and US Eighth, Ninth & Fifteenth Air Forces

US secures Eniwetok Island in Eniwetok Atoll, lands on and takes 7 other islands in the atoll February 21  
US secures Eniwetok Atoll and all Marshall Islands, the first time Japanese lose prewar territory February 22 Mark Clark replaces John Lucas with Lucian Truscott at Anzio, Italy [2]
  February 23  
  February 24 Colossus, the world’s first large-scale electronic digital computer, enters service at Bletchley Park and is soon in use to help decrypt German teleprinter messages from the Lorenz cipher machine
  February 25 For the first time the England based US Eighth Air Force and the Italy based US Fifteenth Air Force bomb same target – Regensburg, Germany in “Big Week” operations
  February 26  
  February 27 NKVD troops massacre 700 villagers of Khaibakh in the Chechnya region [2]
  February 28  
In the US rationing restricions are relaxed March 1 Toothpaste buyers no longer have to turn in old tubes to buy new (required since 4 April 1942 due to tin shortage)
Operation Thursday is launched as gliders deliver Chindits into Burma [2] March 5  
The Japanese 33rd Division crosses the Manipur River in Burma towards the Burmese-Indian border [2] March 7  
Japanese troops launch an offensive towards Imphal, India [2] March 8  
USAAF medium and heavy bombers attack Rabaul without needing fighter escort [2] March 9  
US military leadership estimates that about 60% of Rabaul has been destroyed [2] March 10  
Australian troops capture Bogodjim, New Guinea March 14  
  March 17 New Zealand troops take the train station in the western part of Cassino, Italy and assault German strongholds in hotels
The Chinese 66th Regiment captures Jambu Bum ridge in northern Burma [2] March 19  
Japanese troops capture Ukhrul, India [2] March 20  
  March 22 General Alexander ceases the frontal attacks at Cassino, Italy [2]
Japanese troops mount an unsuccessful suicide charge on Bougainville [2] March 24 “The Great Escape” takes place — 76 Allied airmen escape from German POW camp Stalag Luft III near Sagan, 50 are recaptured and murdered, 3 escape to Allied or neutral territory

 


Ardeatine Caves Massacre — Nazis troops kill 335 Italian civilians in reprisal for partisan bombing the previous day

The Japanese 60th Regiment launches a night attack on Sangshak, India but it fails March 26  
Japanese troops besieg Imphal, India March 30  
Japanese troops capture Nippon Hill near Imphal, India April 1  
The US Tenth Army lands on the southwest coast of Okinawa and begins the 12 week battle to take the island April 2  
  April 4 The Allies conduct the first reconnaissance mission over Auschwitz
  April 5 Soviet troops capture Dorohoi, Romania
Japanese besiege 3500 British & Indian troops in Kohima, India April 6  
  April 8 Day raids on 5 aircraft centers in eastern Germany, night on Mannheim [11]
  April 13 Day raids on aircraft centres including Augsburg and Schweinfurt [11]
Chinese troops launch offensive across border into Burma April 14  
Japanese troops capture Crete West hill near Imphal, India

 


US Navy Task Force 58, with 12 aircraft carriers, begins bombing and bombardment of Hollandia, Wakde, Sawar, and Sarmi areas of New Guinea in preparation for the tomorrow’s landings

April 21  
US forces secure Aitape, New Guinea, and opens Tadji Airstrip at Aitape April 24 Day raids on Friedrichshafen and Munich, night on Munich and Karlsruhe [11]
  May 1 The US Eighth Air Force flies 1st major pre-invasion mission to rail centers in the Pas de Calais and Normandy areas in preparation for D-day
  May 4 Exercise Fabius taking place with Allied troops who will land on Sword, Juno, Gold, and Omaha Beaches on D-day landing on English beaches in the largest amphibious training exercise ever
  May 7 The US Eighth Air Force launches over 1000 bombers in missions to Berlin, Münster, and Osnabrück, Germany
  May 8 The US Congress extends Lend-Lease to June 1945
  May 9 Russians take Sevastopol [11]
  May 10  
  May 11 In Italy, the Germans release Jews of Turkish, Spanish, Portuguese, Swedish, Finnish, and Swiss citizenship under pressure from these neutral governments

 


Allies officially begin the preinvasion bombing of German airfields in France to drive the Luftwaffe away from invasion beaches


Allies in Italy take Pignatoro, shatter Gustav line [11]

  May 12  
  May 13 In the drive for Rome, French troops break through Gustav Line into Aurunci Hills
  May 14 The US II Corps breaks thru the German Gustav Line, opening the route to Rome
  May 15 The Nazis begin the deportation of Hungary’s 440,000 Jews to Auschwitz

 


A conference is held in London for the top commanders for D-day, with King George VI and Winston Churchill in attendance

  May 16  
Chinese troops and Merrill’s Marauders (US guerillas) take Myitkyina airfield, the only hard-surfaced field in northern Burma. The US 879th Engineer Aviation Battalion arrives at there by gliders and opens the airstrip that night. May 17 German troops evacuate Cassino, Italy

 


The Allied Expeditionary Air Force approves invasion stripes for Allied aircraft for D-day

US forces secure Manus. The Pacific Admiralty Islands are now in Allied hands. May 18 Polish troops take Monte Cassino and the abbey; the British take the town of Cassino
  May 19 British troops capture the airfield at Aquino outside of Rome, Italy [2]
US troops secure Wakde Island off New Guinea May 20 Allies in Italy take Itri and Fondi. [11]

 


The Polish resistance captures an intact German V-2 rocket. It will eventually ship the parts to England in July

  May 21  
  May 22  
  May 23 The Polish II Corps and Canadian 1st Infantry Division attack Piedimonte, Italy
  May 24 The US II Corps takes Terracina in Italy unopposed, opening Highway 7 to Anzio
  May 25 German paratroopers raid the hideout of Yugoslavian partisan leader Tito, almost capturing him—and visitor Randolph Churchill, son of Winston Churchill

 


Outgoing mail from US soldiers in Britain is impounded until after D-day as a security precaution


The US VI Corps takes Cisterna, Italy


The US VI Corps from Anzio joins the US II Corps from the Gustav Line, near Littoria, Italy

  May 26  
The US 41st Infantry Division lands on Biak Island in Geelvink Bay of New Guinea and faces heavy resistance May 27  
  May 28  
The first tank battle is fought in the Southwest Pacific, on Biak Island off New Guinea. The US defeats Japanese forces. [1] May 29  
  May 30  
  May 31 Allies take Frosinone in Italy [11]

 


A German counterattack near Iasi, Romania is repulsed [2]


At 0700, first “Corncob” blockships that will be sunk for “Gooseberry” breakwaters depart Britain, the first ships to sail for D-day [1]

  June 1  
  June 2 Secret peace talks begin between Romania and the Soviet Union [2]

 


The US Fifteenth Air Force flies the first shuttle mission to Russia: 130 B-17s & 70 P-51s from Italy bomb Debreczen, Hungary then fly to Poltava [1]

The last major air combat by the Royal Australian Air Force in WWII as Australian fighters shoot down 9 Japanese planes off New Guinea [1] June 3 The Germans declare Rome an open city and evacuate as the Allies advance [1]

 


Loading of all troops for D-day is complete; Force U (bound for Utah Beach) departs ports in Devon for Normandy [1]

  June 4 The 36th Infantry Division was the first Allied troops to enter Rome [51]

 


The US 5th Army captures Cervaro, Italy

  June 5  
  June 6 D-Day, the Allied invasion of Normandy
  June 7  
  June 8 British and US forces link near Port-en-Bessin in Normandy [1]

 


On the Adriatic coast of Italy, the British advance after finding the Germans have retreated [1]


The US 2nd Ranger Battalion at Pointe du Hoc is relieved by forces from Omaha Beach, having held the point since climbing the cliffs on D-day. [1]


RAF first uses the 12,000-lb “Tallboy” bomb, destroying a train tunnel in Saumur, France on only north-south rail line in the Loire Valley, impeding German reinforcement of Normandy [1]

  June 9  
  June 10 Oradour-Sur-Glane – A French village utterly destroyed and over 600 men, women, and children massacred by SS troops
  June 11 Allied thrusts to Tilly-sur-Seulles in Normandy [11]

 


Allies take Pescara and Avezzano in Italy [11]

  June 12 The French town of Carentan is liberated by the 101st Airborne [4]

 


Allies also take the Cerisy forest in Normandy [11]

  June 13 The first Fieseler Fi 103 (the infamous V1) is fired on London [13]

 


Allies thrust to Troarn in Normandy. [11]


At Villers-Bocage in Normandy, Tiger tank commander Michael Wittmann was credited with disabling 11 tanks and 13 other armoured vehicles [18]

  June 14 American troops capture Carentan, France [2
The US Marine 2nd and 4th Divisions land on Saipan in the Mariana Islands [1] June 15  
  June 16 Allies capture St. Sauveur-le-Vicomte in Normandy.  Allies take Grosseto and Terni in Italy. [11]
  June 17 In Normandy, the US First Army cuts off the Cotentin Peninsula, trapping Germans in Cherbourg [1]

 


Free French troops land on Elba off the coast of Italy [1]


Iceland becomes an independent republic with Sveinn Björnsson as the first president [1]

Japanese troops capture Changsha, China [2] June 18 Allies cut Cherbourg peninsula. [11]
  June 19 Free French secure Elba [1]

 


A great storm hits Normandy wrecking the Allied Mulberry harbor A and damaging Mulberry harbor B. Hundreds of vessels are grounded, hampering the build-up after D-Day. [1]

Battle of the Philippine Sea. The aerial part of the battle was nicknamed the Great Marianas Turkey Shoot resulting in the loss of over 450 aircraft by the Japanese. This battle resulted in sinking 3 Japanese aircraft carriers, eliminating the Imperial Japanese Navy’s ability to conduct large-scale carrier actions. [1] June 19-20  
  June 20 Soviets forces take Viipuri, Finland, opening the Gulf of Finland to Soviet ships [1]

 


The US First Army besieges Cherbourg, France [21]

  June 21 British XIII Corps engage in heavy fighting at San Fatucchio, Italy [2]
  June 23  
  June 24  
  June 25 Allies in Italy take Piombino [11]
Chinese 10th Army, supported by US aircraft, stops the Japanese advance at Hengyang [2] June 26  
  June 27 British 3rd Infantry Division and tanks launch Operation Mitten in France [2]
  June 28 Russians take Mogilev [11]
  June 30 On D-Plus 23 the German-garrison in the port city of Cherbourg surrender providing the Allies a deep-water harbor for moving men and materiel into France [4]

 


German troops capture Hill 112 at Caen, France [2]

  July 1  
Americans land in Noemfoor area, New Guinea [11] July 2  
  July 3 Russians take Minsk [11]
  July 4 The millionth Allied soldier lands in Normandy, less than one month after D-day [1]

 


US Navy Task Force 58 bombards and bombs Iwo Jima, Haha Jima, and Chichi Jima, forcing the Japanese air force to leave the islands [1]

  July 5 The US Fifteenth Air Force bombs German submarine pens at Toulon, France, sinking two of the ten U-boats remaining in the Mediterranean and damaging five. [1]

 


In the US, auto inner tubes are removed from rationing, but tires are still rationed [1]

  July 6  
The US Army 27th Infantry Division bares the brunt of the largest Banzai attack of the war. When the smoke cleared and the dust settled, over 4,000 Japanese troops are dead, and American dead and wounded numbered nearly 1,000 [25] July 7  
  July 8 The US Army commands all Post Exchanges, theaters, and transportation to be open to all races [1]

 


The British launch 1750 barrage balloons south of London to combat German V-1 buzz bombs [1]


In Normandy, the British & Canadians launch an assault on Caen and enter the city [1]

The US secures Saipan in the Mariana Islands [1] July 9 Hungary Prime Minister Miklós Horthy temporarily stops deportation of the Jews, an attempt to curry favor with the Allies in case of the need to negotiate for surrender [1]

 


The British Second Army takes the crucial city of Caen in Normandy [1]

  July 10  
  July 11 Soviet forces capture the surrounded German Fourth Army near Minsk in Byelorussia and take 37,000 POWs [1]
  July 12  
  July 13 Red Army units capture Vilna, Lithuania [2]
  July 14 Russians take Pinsk [11]
  July 15  
  July 16  
  July 17  
  July 18 Allies take St. Lo. Allies in Italy take Ancona [11]
  July 19 The US takes the crucial port of Leghorn (Livorno), Italy with little opposition, but Germans have destroyed the harbor [1,11]

 


Day raids on Munich from Britain and Italy, [11]


Canadian troops cleared southern suburbs of Caen, France [2]

  July 20 A plan to assassinate Hitler fails; many suspects are arrested and executed [2]
  July 21  
  July 22 Soldiers of the Red Army come upon Majdanek, the first of the Nazi camps to be liberated. They freed just under 500 prisoners. [25]
  July 23 The German Gestapo arrest the head of the German Abwehr Wilhelm Canaris [2]
The US Marines land on Tinian in the Marianas [1,2] July 24 The Soviets take Lublin and
liberate the first Nazi concentration camp, at Majdenek near Lublin [1,2,11]
  July 25 Operation Cobra: US First Army begins breakout from Normandy [1,11]
  July 26  
  July 27 In Operation Cobra in Normandy, the US First Army breaks through German defenses south of Saint-Lô [1]

 


First operational use of RAF Gloster Meteor jet fighters, which will down 14 V-1 buzz bombs by the end of the war [1]


The Russians take Lwow, Stanislav, Bialystok, and Dvinsk [11]

  July 28 The Russians take Brest-Litovsk, Jaroslav, Przemysl [2,11]
Japanese troops attack Kokoda airfield in Australian Papua [2]On

 


Guam, US Marines clear Orote Peninsula and take Orote Airfield [1]

July 29 In the Roncey Pocket, over 100 panzers and 250 German vehicles are lost to Allied air attacks.
Americans land on Vogelkop peninsula, New Guinea [11] July 30  
  July 31 The Soviet Army reaches the East Prussian border [1]

 


The Germans destroy all bridges in Florence, Italy, except the historic Ponte Vecchio, which can only handle foot traffic [1]


The British VIII Corps launches Operation Bluecoat towards Vire River in Normandy, France [2]


Allies take Avranches. Russians take Jelgava [11]

The island of Tinian is declared secure after nine days of fighting. the battle is termed “the perfect amphibious operations of World War II,” by MajGen Harry Schmidt, Commander of the V Amphibious Corps. [54] [1,54] August 1 The US Third Army under Gen. George Patton enters action in France, breaking out of Normandy and entering Brittany [1]

 


The Warsaw uprising begins: Polish Home Army rises up against the Germans as the Soviets approach [1]

  August 2 Neutral Turkey breaks diplomatic relations with Germany [1]

 


The US Ninth Air Force stops bombing bridges over Loire and Seine Rivers in France in order to speed Allied advance [1]

US and Chinese forces take the crucial town of Myitkyina, Burma [1,2] August 3  
  August 4 The Eighth Air Force launches Operation APHRODITE, sending radio-controlled B-17 ‘drones’, packed with explosive, at Nazi V-Weapon sites. The operation’s most famous pilot was Joe Kennedy Jr. [56]
The Cowra Breakout, the attempted escape of over 1,100 Japanese prisoners from the Cowra POW camp in New South Wales, Australia, takes place. During the breakout and ensuing manhunt, four Australian soldiers and 231 Japanese are killed [57] August 5 Wola massacre in Warsaw, Poland
  August 6 At 2030, remnants of four German panzer divisions, one panzer-grenadier division and two infantry divisions counter-attack American lines – just north of Mortain – in order to cut off the Contentin Peninsula. [13]
  August 7 In Normandy, the Canadian forces launch a drive toward Falaise [1]

 


Cherbourg Harbor opens for Allied traffic in France [1]


At Harvard University, IBM reveals the Harvard Mark I, the first program-controlled computer (has 50 ft panel, adds in 1/3 second) [1]


In Normandy, the Germans open a counteroffensive in the US First Army area, retaking Mortain but falling short of goal of reaching Avranches [1]

The Japanese take Hengyang in their drive south across China, taking the US Fourteenth Air Force airbase at Hengyang [1] August 8 Allied drive on Falaise [11]

 


Eight German officers are hanged in Berlin for their role in the July 20 Hitler assassination plot; by 3 Feb 1945, 4980 will be executed [1]


HMCS REGINA stops to assist merchant ship Ezra Weston, thought to have been mined while escorting convoy EBC-66. She too is torpedoed by German sub U667 off Trevose Head, Cornwall. Sinking in 28 seconds, 30 sailors killed, 66 survived [31,61]

  August 9 The Vyborg-Petrozavodsk Offensive, a major operation launched by the Soviet Union against Finland during the Continuation War, ends in an effective military stalemate. Although the Soviets failed to breach the VKT-line they reclaimed East Karelia [57 ]

 


Five Irish members of the SAS & formerly of the Royal Ulster Rifles are captured & executed by the SS in France. [63]

Raids on Nagasaki and Palembang.[11]

 


Japanese 18th Army is wiped out in the Aitape-New Hollandia area [2]


The US secures Guam, although one Japanese soldier won’t surrender until 1972 [1]

August 10 In Paris, rail workers go on strike, stranding German soldiers trying to evacuate [1]
  August 11 The Germans scuttle ships at Nantes, France as Allies approach [1]

 


The US Third Army crosses the Loire River in France [1]

New songs in Top Ten [1] August 12 BATTLE OF THE ARGENTAN-FALAISE POCKET BEGINS WWII Allies nearly encircle German defenders south of Falaise who counterattack giving the Allies an opportunity to encircle them. The Germans suffered heavy losses before the Allies closed the gap on 20 August. [70]

 


“I’ll Walk Alone,” “Is You Is or Is You Ain’t My Baby?” [1]
<hr
The first PLUTO (Pipeline under the Ocean) becomes operational, taking fuel from Isle of Wight, England to Cherbourg, France [1]

  August 13 British and Indian troops cross into northern Florence via historic Ponte Vecchio, securing the city with help of the Italians [1]

 


13 year old Maria Bartnik perishes during the Warsaw Uprising. She was a liason for the Radosław group and was killed in the Old Town. She was one of many children who fought in Warsaw Uprising [73]

The US War Production Board allows the production of . . . [1] August 14 . . . some civilian goods to resume in preparation for the November elections [1]

 


OperationTractable was launched by the 1st Canadian Army to close the Falaise pocket. The operation began with a bombing raid on the Germans which caused some Allied casualties. The advance faced visibility issues but was successful on its first day. Canadian, Polish, and US troops create the Falaise pocket in France, partially surrounding Germans [1,31]


HMCS IROQUOIS with the 10th DF attack 2 German forces, Bay of Biscay. 1st an Armed Merchant ship & Elbing Destroyer damaged & escaped under a smokescreen. Later a 2nd force was attacked; two minesweepers are driven ashore & IROQUOIS sinks minesweeper M385. [61]


General Barnes proposed two new heavy tanks inspired by the T26 with more powerful guns: the T29 and T30 with 105 and 155 mm guns. Neither tank made it in time to fight in WWII and only a handful of prototypes were built [22]

  August 15 HMCShips PRINCE DAVID & PRINCE HENRY with the 529th & 528th Canadian LCA Flotilla’s embarked, land infantry in southern France, as part of Operation DRAGOON, including 279 soldiers from the Devils Brigade and 248 French Commandos [61]

 


Operation Dragoon, the Allied invasion of southern France, is launched.Landing in Provence, Operation Anvil-Dragoon, with 9,000 paratroopers and 350,000 assault troops. [2,76]

Organized Japanese resistance ends on the Burma-India border [1] August 16 The US Eighth Air Force suffers 1st attack by Luftwaffe jet fighters (Messerschmitt Me 163s), has 1st loss to a jet, and destroys a German jet for 1st time [1]
  August 17 The Germans begin retreating from southern France. They also begin retreating from the Falaise pocket in Normandy while the Canadians take Falaise [1]

 


The US Third Army takes St. Malo, Chartres, and Orléans in France. [1]


Allies take Falaise, announce capture of Chartres, Orleans, Chateaudun [11]


The Vichy French government flees for Germany; Marshal Philippe Pétain and his staff are interned by Hitler, while Prime Minister Pierre Laval’s government will resign [1]

Camp Drancy, described as the antechamber of death for over 62.000 of the 75.000 Jews deported from France, is liberated. [81]

  August 18 The German Seventh Army retreats across the Orne River in France [2]

 


In southern France, US Task Force Butler under Brig. Gen. Frederic Butler strikes northwest, taking advantage of weak German resistance to make a rapid drive. [1]


Soviet forces capture Sandomierz, Poland [2,11]

  August 19 The French Resistance rises up against Nazi troops occupying Paris. Within five days the Allied army arrives to liberate the city. They seize Hôtel de Ville (city hall). [1,4]

 


Canadian troops link with the US Third Army at Chambois, France closing the Falaise Gap; 50,000 German prisoners will be taken, but 20-30,000 escape [1]


Two days after Bradley had ordered his troops to seize Trun and Chambois – Americans finally left their static frontline and advanced three miles to meet  the Polish forces who – that evening – had already captured Chambois. two assault groups from Gen. Maczek’s Polish 1st Armoured Division captured Chambois and Mont Ormel ridge (“The Mace”), securing good firing and observation positions on the German retreat route. The FalaisPocket is about to close [13,55]

  August 20 HMCS CHAUDIÈRE, HMCS OTTAWA (2nd) and HMCS KOOTENAY share in the sinking of the German submarine U984, west of Brest.  It was a busy patrol for the ships in Escort Group 11. The same three Canadian ships destroyed the German submarine U-621 two days earlier. [51,61]

 


An American air squadron bombards the I.G. Farbenindustrie chemical plants near the German Auschwitz-Birkenau camp. [6]


Russians open Rumanian drive. Allies cross Seine west of Paris. [11]

  August 21 The Dumbarton Oaks Conference begins in Washington, DC for Allies to discuss the establishment of the United Nations [1]

 


French civilians launch an insurrection in Marseille against the Germans [1]


The US Third Army reaches Reims and Troyes southeast of Paris, France [2]


HMCS ALBERNI is struck with a acoustic torpedo from German submarine U480, SE of Isle of Wright. The corvette sinks in just 30 seconds, 59 of her ship’s company are killed [61]

  August 22 HMS NABOB is torpedoed by U354, in Barents Sea, killing 21 sailors. Effective damage control by her Canadian ship’s company saves the escort aircraft carrier. In a historic display of seamanship she steams to Scapa Flow under her own power. [31,61]

 


HMCS IROQUOIS (1st) with HMS URSA & MAURITIUS attack several German ships off Biscay coast, sinking one & driving a second ashore [61]


Allies take Lisieux. Russians take Jassy. [11]

  August 23  
  August 24 Russians take Kishinev [11]

 


The 9th Company of the Régiment de marche du Tchad under Captain Raymond Dronne enters Paris and pushes into the centre of the city. Dronne goes to the HQ of German General Dietrich Von Choltitz and requests him to surrender. [57]

During her third WWII war patrol, submarine USS Picuda (SS 382) spots ten Japanese ships in Luzon Straits. Picuda slips past five escorts and eludes three patrol planes overhead to sink cargo ship Kotoku Maru and destroyer Yunagi. [68] August 25 After Third Army crossed the Seine River, fighting broke out in Paris between the French Resistance and Germans. The liberation was led by the French 2d Armored Division. On 25 Aug crowds welcomed French and U.S. troops, and Charles de Gaulle. [2,11,70]

 


Russians take Tartu. Rumania declares war on Germany. [11]


The Army’s rapid advance severely strained the supply system so a herculean logistics effort called the “Red Ball Express” was initiated by the Motor Transport Service, every available truck was used and kept the war momentum going! [70]

  August 26 Gen. Charles de Gaulle leads a parade down the Champs Élysées; snipers shoot at him there and later inside Notre Dame Cathedral; snipers also shoot at celebrating Parisians at Place de la Concorde. [1]
The final group of Chindits, British commandos operating behind Japanese lines in Burma, are evacuated to India [1] August 27 Day raid on Ruhr by British heavy bombers. Russians take Galatz and Foscani. Allies take Toulon, Meaux. [11]

 


Kesselring holds his reserved behind Gothic Line as he observes Allied attacks [2]

  August 28  
  August 29 Victory Parade of the 28th (US) Infantry Division on the Champs Élysées in Paris. [76]

 


The Russians take Constanta. Allies take Soissons, Chateau-Thierry, Vitry. [11]


Staff Sergeant Lafayette Pool and his Sherman tank, “In the Mood”, conducted a three day rampage through enemy lines. For his actions, Pool was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross. [92]

  August 30  
  August 31  
  September 1  
  September 2

Allies enter Belgium. Allies in Italy take Pisa. [11]


British 51st Highland Division enteres Saint-Valery-en-Caux, France [2]

  September 3

Canadians troops reach the Green II defensive positions on the Gothic Line [2]

  September 4

Allies take Antwerp. Hostilities suspended on Finnish front [11]

  September 5

Jedburgh agent Jean Larrieu being awarded the Croix de Guerre with Palm [2]


The Allies take Namur. Russians declare war on Bulgaria. Day raids on Stuttgart, Karlsruhe, Ludwigshafen [11]


Soviet forces repulse a German-Hungarian counter attack near Klausenberg, Romania [2]


Antwerp harbour is captured, but – reasonably – a long time away from being secured and operational [13]

  September 6

Two days after the city’s liberation, German forces are shelling the city of Antwerp. Start of a long period of shelling and attacks by V1s and V2s [13]


Ypres is liberated by Polish troops, ending four long years of Nazi occupation. The battle damages Menin Gate was free at last for the Last Post to be played. That night its notes resounded beneath the monument and has been played every single evening ever since. [96]


Russians take Turnu-Severin, reach Iron Gate [11]


Canadian troops surround Calais, France [2]

  September 7  
  September 8

The first operational V-2 launch takes place, and the last on March 30, 1945. During this seven-month period in WWII, 1,115 V-2s hit England, and 1,524 fell on continental Europe.  the first V2 ballistic missile – fired from The Hague – fell on Britain. Killing three people in Staveley Road, Chiswick: a 67-year-old woman, a three-year-old child and a soldier home on leave. [4, 13, 102]


Allies take Liege and Ostend. Day raids on Karlsruhe and Ludwigshafen. [11]


Canadian troops capture Ostend, Belgium [2]

  September 9 Canadian forces overrun German rocket bases on the Belgian coast [1]

 


The US First Army enters the Netherlands near Maastricht [1]


Near Brest, France, four men of the US 2nd Ranger Battalion, led by Lt. Robert Edlin, with lots of bluffing and bravado, take Batterie Graf Spee without firing a shot—and take 814 POWs [1]


19 year old nurse, Elżbieta Kowalczyk perishes during the Warsaw Uprising. She is killed on 10 Wspólna Street. The building took a direct hit from a Karl-Gerät mortar. Her body was never found. [73]


HMCS Dunver and HMCS Hespeler sink the German submarine U-484 off the coast of the Hebrides Islands. [31]


Russia suspends hostilities with Bulgaria [11]

  September 10

Capture of the Bridge over the Meuse-Escaut Canal at Neerpelt in Belgium. Seven days later this would mark the start line for the ground element ‘Garden’ in Operation Market Garden. [106]


Allies take Zeebrugge. Day raids on Stuttgart, Nuremburg, Ulm [11]


Allied troops cross the German-Belgian border near Aachen, Germany [2]


The 991st Field Artillery Battalion armed with M12 self propelled guns fire the first volley at German territory. The M12 provided heavy guns for mobile mechanized units, which came in handy in North-Western Europe. [22]

  September 11 The US First Army reaches the Siegfried Line at the German border and crosses into Germany north of Trier [1]

 


Scottish 15th Division crosseds into the Netherlands near Antwerp, Belgium [2]


At Saulieu, France, official contact is made between Overlord forces (Normandy 6/6/44) and Dragoon forces (southern France 8/15/44); Allied front now runs from English Channel to Mediterranean [1]

  September 12 Romania signs an armistice with the Allies and agrees to fight Germany [1]

 


The first German city falls to the Allies as the US First Army takes Roetgen [1]


In Normandy, the Canadians take the crucial port of Le Havre, but due to damage, the port won’t open for four weeks [1]


The Octagon Conference begins in Québec between US, UK, and Canada [1]


German and Hungarian troops launch an offensive towards Arad and Timisoara [2]

  September 13 In Belgium, Canadian forces cross both the Leopold Canal and the Canal de Derivation, while British forces cross the Meuse-Escaut Canal [1]

 


Operation Dragoon, the Allied campaign in southern France, concludes: 131,000 German POWs have been taken, 40% of Army Group G [1]

 


American troops reach the Siegfried Line, the west wall of Germany’s defense system. This leads to the Battle of Hurtgen Forest on 19 September 1944 and the Battle of the Bulge in December [108]


17 year old liaison Wanda Chłopek ps. “Wandzia” perishes during the Warsaw Uprising. She was seriously wounded on Zielna Street and dies of her injuries. [73]


These brave SOE agents (Eliane Plewman, Yolande Beekman, Madeleine Damerment and Noor Inayat Khan) are murdered in Dachau concentration Camp, Germany. [13]


Canadian troops cross the Leopold Canal in Belgium [13]


Russians take Lomzha [11]

  September 14

Russians take Praga.  [11]

US Marines land on Peleliu in the Palau Islands [2]


USS Barb (SS 200) sinks Japanese 11,700-ton tanker Azusa and 20,000-ton escort carrier Unyo off Hong Kong. Famed skipper Eugene Fluckey maneuvered Barb until both ships overlapped, then fired six torpedoes — five of which hit [68]

September 15  
  September 16 German forces south of Loire surrender. The Russians enter Sofia. Second Quebec conference ends. [11]

 


The Soviets launch assault toward Gulf of Riga on the Baltic [1,11]

  September 17

Operation Market Garden begins in the Netherlands. The first of 41,000 Allied paratroopers are dropped into the Netherlands as part of the ill-fated Operation Market Garden. [4, 13, 110, 111]


1st Airborne Division lands near Arnhem, tasked to capture the Rhine bridge until relieved by XXX Corps. The tanks never arrived, but troops held out for 9 brutal days before withdrawing. [112]


No.437 (Dakota) Squadron of the RCAF ARC participated in Operation Market Garden. The transport squadron supported the airborne landings at Arnhem, by towing troops in gliders and dropping supplies [31]


16 year old nurse, Alicja Dybczyńska ps. “Ala” and her 21 year old sister, liaison, Zofia Dybczyńska ps. “Zosia” perished together during the Warsaw Uprising. They were both killed at 46 Koszykowa Street. [73]

  September 18 British ground troops link with the US 101st Airborne Division in Eindhoven, Holland [1]

 


The US Ninth Army takes the crucial port of Brest, France [1]


The first gliders are landing at Landing Zone Z. Second day in operation Market Garden. British paras have captured the Arnhem Rhine Bridge. At Nijmegen, the Americans failed to take advantage of the element of surprise, the main weapon of paras: the large Waal Bridge is now firmly in German hands [13]


Eindhoven is liberated. A day later the Luftwaffe bomb the city killing over 220 civilians [99]


Over 100 USAAF Flying Fortresses appeared over Warsaw. The bombers dropped 1250 containers with supplies for the insurgents. Only 250 of them were picked by the Poles. Stalin finally approved the operation Frantic 7 when the uprising was basically lost. [55]

  September 19 The US Ninth Army clears the Brittany region of France [1]

 


Germans begin arresting Danish policemen for refusing to protect enterprises from the Danish resistance; 81-90 will die in concentration camps [1]


In Operation Market Garden, British ground troops link with US 82nd Airborne Division at Grave, the Netherlands [1]


In the Netherlands 44 RTR’s move was cancelled twice before eventually setting off at 1845. The Bn was passing through Eindhoven [99]


Finnish armistice signed. Day raids on Hamm and Soest [11]


15 year old liaison, Barbara Nazdrowicz ps.”Wiewiórka”, perished during the Warsaw Uprising. She was killed by shrapnel on the intersection of Lwowska and Koszykowa. [73]


Indian 4th Division reaches the outskirts of the city of San Marino [2]

Start of 2-day carrier raid on Manila bay. [11]

September 20 In Operation Market Garden, British ground troops and US 82nd Airborne take Nijmegen, the Netherlands [1]

 


Allies take Brest, Boulogne, Nijmegen.  [11]

US Navy Task Force 38 carrier aircraft strike Manila Harbor in the Philippines, sinking 28 Japanese ships [1] September 21 In Operation Market Garden, Germans retake the bridge in Arnhem from British paratroopers [1]

 


Allies in Italy take Rimini [11]

In the Pacific, the US 81st Infantry Division lands on Ulithi Atoll unopposed, to be used as a supply base [1] September 22 Soviet troops commence a crossing of the River Danube near Turnu Severin, Romania [2]

USS West Virginia (BB 48) reaches Pearl Harbor and rejoins the Pacific Fleet. Last of 5 battleships repaired @ Puget Sound Navy Yard after Pearl Harbor attack [107]

September 23 Soviet troops commence a crossing of the River Danube near Turnu Severin, Romania.

 

Soviet and Romanian forces enter Hungary.

 [2]


Russians reach Gulf of Riga at Paernu. Allies in Italy take Fute Pass. Night raids on Muenster and Neuss. [11]

  September 24

British troops land in Greece. Following the liberation of Araxos airfield on 23 September, the first Royal Air Force unit returns to Greece, when Supermarine Spitfires Mk Vs of No. 32 Squadron fly into the airfield. They would soon fight against Greek anti-government forces [11, 60]

  September 25 Free French troops launch assault towards Belfort Gap in France [1]

 


Operation Market Garden ends as British troops withdraw from Arnhem, Holland; two-thirds of the British paratroopers have been killed or captured [1]


Soviet forces reach the Gulf of Riga on the Baltic [1,2]


The Soviets enter Hungary near Arad [1]

  September 26  A C-47 carrying flight nurse Reba Whittle crash-lands behind enemy lines in Germany; she becomes the only female US POW in the European Theater in WWII. She will treat patients in German POW camp hospitals and will be repatriated to the US in February 1945 [1]

 


Allied troops capture Mook, the Netherlands [2]


British 8th Army drives out German positions along Uso River north of Rimini, Italy [2]

  September 27 The British 8th Army drives the German from their positions along the Uso River north of Rimini, Italy [2]
  September 28 Greek government-in-exile and competing resistance groups agree to place forces under Allied command [1]

 


Soviet 57th Army enters Yugoslavia [1]

  September 29 In France, the Canadians allow an armistice in Calais to let civilians evacuate [1]
In the Pacific, the US declares Peleliu secure, but resistance remains [1]

 


J.B. Conant and V. Bush of the Office of Scientific Research and Development write to the Sec of War with concerns about Pres Roosevelt’s “cavalier” belief that it is possible to maintain an Anglo-American #atomic monopoly after WWII [116]

September 30 The Warsaw Uprising ends in Polish surrender. In the occupied areas of Warsaw, German soldiers set all buildings on fire to decrease the chances of the AK (Home Army) using them in the future. [12]

 


Canadian troops take Calais, France [1]


The Allies capture the last German cross-Channel guns; residents of heavily shelled Dover, England celebrate [1]

  October 1

The USSR received it’s last shipment of Valentine tanks. These were used vehicles that were previously in service with Polish troops in Iran [22]

  October 2 The “Battle of the Scheldt” begins. Canadian, British and Polish forces attack into the Netherlands to open up the shipping route to Antwerp so that its port could be used to supply the Allies.

 


Americans open drive on Aachen. Polish rising in Warsaw ends [11]

  October 3 The Germans evacuate Athens, Greece [1]
The US Sixth Army secures Morotai in the Netherlands East Indies [1] October 4 British paratroopers land at Patras, Greece, and on Crete and Aegean islands [1]

 


HMCS CHEBOGUE is torpedoed in the stern by U1227 mid-Atlantic while escorting convoy ONS-33, 7 sailors are killed. She is successfully towed 800 miles to port. Considered a Total Constructive Loss CHEBOGUE is not repaired [61]

  October 5 Germany begins conscription of sixteen-year-old boys [1]

 


French women are granted the right to vote for the first time ever [1]


Canadian troops cross Belgian-Dutch border north of Antwerp [1]


Vatican galleries reopened after the liberation of Rome [14]

  October 6 Allied troops capture Ossendrecht, the Netherlands [2]

 


The US First Army enters the Hürtgen Forest in Germany [1]

  October 7

General Rudolf Viest is made the commander of the Slovak National Uprising [2]


British 8th Army resumed attacks on the Gothic Line in Italy [2]

  October 8  
  October 9 The fourth Moscow Conference opens between Churchill and Stalin [1]

 


Canadian troops make an amphibious landing at Breskens Pocket in the Netherlands [2]

US Navy Task Force 38 (17 aircraft carriers) strikes Okinawa, sinking 34 vessels & destroying 75 Japanese planes [1] October 10 British and Greek troops secure Corinth and German Army Group E begins a retreat from Greece [1]
  October 11  
  October 12 In Italy, Buffalo Soldiers of US 92nd Infantry Division breach Gothic Line, the only black US Army unit to see combat in Europe [1]
The US secures Palau Islands in the Pacific [1] October 13 The Soviets take the important naval base of Riga, Latvia, trapping Germans in the Courland Peninsula [1]

 


The port of Le Havre, France opens for Allied ships, improving the supply situation [1]

  October 14 No.6 RCAF Group, Bomber Command, within a period of sixteen hours, flies a total of 501 Lancaster and Halifax bombers against targets in Duisburg, Germany

 


Greek Resistance and British troops secure Athens, Greece [1]


German Field Marshal Erwin Rommel, a suspect in the July 20 Hitler assassination plot, commits suicide to protect his family [1, 116]


Paratroops from 2 Independent Parachute Brigade head towards their drop zone at Megara in Greece [13]

British occupy Athens [11]


Soviet and Yugoslavian troops enter Belgrade [2]

  October 15 Hungarian regent Adm. Miklós Horthy is deposed by German commandos and replaced with fascist leader Ferenc Szálasi the next day [1]

 


Russians take Petsamo [11]

  October 16

HMCShips ANNAN & LOCH ACHANALT attack U-1006 on the surface south of Faeroes Islands. Following a running gun battle and dropping depth charges, the RCN ships sink the U-Boat & rescue 46 German survivors. Eight sailors in ANNAN are wounded. [61]

  October 17  
The U.S. Navy announced a decision October 18 The Soviets enter Czechoslovakia through the Carpathian passes, but pause to let Germans crush Slovakian mountain uprising [1]

 


Hitler activates Volkssturm, a militia of all able-bodied males 16-60 years old [1, 116]


Erwin Rommel is given a state funeral [2]


Himmler is appointed as Commander of Heeresgruppe Oberrhein [2]

Lt. Gen. Joseph Stilwell is removed from command of the China-Burma-India Theater and recalled to US to integrate its female reserve program [1]

 


Black women were admitted for the first time to the US Navy Reserves. Until 1944, of 82,000 Blacks enlisted in US Navy, not one was able to serve as an officer. [122]

October 19

British announce capture of Tiddim in Burma [11]


Hitler orders the complete and total destruction of the city of Warsaw [2]

Douglas MacArthur lands at Leyte after being driven out of the Philippines two-and-a-half years earlier. “I have returned!” he declares. October 20

US 88th Division captures Monte Grande, Italy. [2]

First deliberate kamikaze attack. A Japanese Aichi D3A dive-bomber or a Mitsubishi Ki-51, carrying a 440 lb bomb, attacks HMAS Australia off Leyte Island, as the Battle of Leyte Gulf begins [8]

October 21

‘Aries’, an Avro Lancaster bomber departs on the first round-the-world trip by a British aircraft. Part of the Empire Air Navigation School at RAF Shawbury, it aimed to research navigational techniques, skills, and aids, and advance knowledge. [60]


During WWII, the Nemmersdorf Massacre occurs against German civilians and French and Belgian POWs, allegedly by the Soviet Army. Nemmersdorf, in East Prussia, was one of the first ethnic-German villages to fall to the Soviets. [116]


Aachen becomes the first major German city to fall to American/Allied forces after three weeks of fighting, during World War II [11, 116]

  October 22  
The Battle of Leyte Gulf, the largest naval battle of WWII and perhaps the largest in history. The U.S. Navy’s Third and Seventh Fleets, along with ships from the Royal Australian Navy and Royal Navy, meet the Imperial Japanese Navy at the Battle of Leyte Gulf, possibly the largest naval battle in history. 300 Allied warships decimate the Japanese navy at Leyte Gulf. It’s the largest sea battle of WW2 and gives the Allies virtual control of the Pacific [4, 11, 51, 123]

 


USS Franklin launches strikes in the Manila Bay area [2]

October 23-26  

The most successful submarine of WWII, USS Tang (SS 306), is struck and sunk by a circular run of her last torpedo. Despite serving only a year, Tang set the record for most ships (33) and greatest tonnage (116,454) sunk among all @USNavy subs during the war. [68]


Battleship Musashi is lost in the Battle of Sibuyan Sea to overwhelming air power [2]

October 24

French auto company founder Louis Renault dies. He was awaiting trial on charges of industrial collaboration with Nazi Germany during World War II at the time of this death [116]

The US Navy and the Imperial Japanese Navy fight the world’s last dreadnought action at the Battle of Surigao Strait. RAdm Oldendorf’s task group formed a battle line that “crossed the T” of the Japanese Southern Force, halting their advance. [51]

October 25

Russians invade Norway, take Kirkenes [11]

  October 26 Canadian troops make amphibious landing at Beveland in crucial Scheldt Estuary in the Netherlands [1]
  October 27  
  October 28 Bulgaria, which had fought with Germany, signs armistice with the Allies [1]
  October 29  
  October 30 In the Vosges mountains in France, the US 442nd Infantry Regiment (Japanese-Americans) rescues the Lost Battalion with heavy losses (184 killed) [1]
  October 31  
  November 1 Allied forces land at Uncle Beach at Vlissingen as part of Operation Infatuate. This amphibious operation is to eliminate Fortress Walcheren and finally “open” the port of Antwerp. This was part of the “Battle of the Scheldt”. [13]

 


Army flight nurse Lieutenant Aleda E. Lutz becomes the first U.S. woman to die in combat during World War II when the plane she was in crashed near Saint-Chamond, Loire, France [116]

  November 2 The liberation of Belgium is complete. Canadians have taken Zeebrugge [1]

 


Marshal Tito becomes Prime Minister of Yugoslavia, serving in coalition government with government-in-exile prime minister Ivan Šubašić [1]


The US First Army begins drive on Schmidt, Germany through the Hürtgen Forest [1]


All able-bodied German males ages 13-60 are ordered to join the Volkssturm militia under penalty of court-martial [1]


Soviet units enter the suburbs of Budapest, Hungary [2]

First Japanese Fu-Go balloon bombs (hydrogen balloons with incendiary devices and antipersonnel bombs) were launched against the United States from the east coast of the main Japanese island of Honshu [8]

November 3  
  November 4 The Liberation of Greece is complete as the final German troops evacuate [1]
US B-29s bomb Japanese-occupied Singapore for the first time [1] November 5 British troops captured Ravenna, Italy, cutting the rail line to Bologna
  November 6  
  November 7  
The British launch an offensive in western Burma toward Akyab [1] November 8 The “Battle of the Scheldt”ends

 


Canadians secure Walcheren and the Scheldt Estuary to protect port of Antwerp, Belgium [1]


Allied troops captured Veere and Koudekerke in the Netherlands


Allies take Forli in Italy. Americans open drive toward Metz [11]


The US Third Army begins its offensive against the Siegfried line toward Metz, France [1]


The 761st Tank Battalion, the first African-American tank unit, enters combat with US Third Army [1]

  November 9  
  November 10  
  November 11  
  November 12

The Tirpitz is attacked by Lancaster Bombers of 9 & 617 Squadrons as part of Operation Catechism. Struck repeatedly by Tallboy bombs, the ship lists heavily to port before capsizing. Up to 1000 of her crew were killed in the attack or its aftermath. [1, 11, 129]


Japanese-American soldiers of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team stand in formation to receive citations for bravery. Through the war, the 442nd received 4,000 Bronze Stars, 4,000 Purple Hearts, and 21 Medals of Honor. [77, 128]

  November 13 In the Vosges Mountains in France, US Seventh Army launches offensive on German Siegfried Line [1]
American and Chinese troops attack Bhamo, Burma November 14 The French First Army opens assault towards Belfort Gap in France [1]

 


The United States Congress establishes the rank of five-star general. Eisenhower, Marshall, MacArthur and Bradley are all promoted [4]

US troops land on Mindoro, Philippine Islands [2]

November 15  
  November 16 The US First and Ninth Armies launch offensive to clear the Roer Plain in Germany [1]

 


The largest loss of life in a single attack of V2 occurred on this cold Saturday afternoon, when a German  V-2 missile makes a direct hit on Antwerp’s Cinema Rex. More than a thousand holiday moviegoers are watching a matinee screening of the Gary Cooper Western The Plainsman. The attack left 567 dead and 291 injured. [8, 117]


Known as Operation Autumn Mist (also known as the Ardennes Offensive and the Von Rundstedt Offensive), 200,000 German troops backed by 1,600 guns and 350 tanks launch Hitler’s last-ditch Ardennes Offensive. To support the offensive, the Luftwaffe had assembled some 2,460 combat aircraft, including 1,770 single-engine fighters. 89,000 Americans become casualties in the Battle of the Bulge, making it the single bloodiest U.S. campaign of WW2.The Germans wanted to capture Antwerp and stop the Allies bringing in supplies. The attack was a surprise and led to heavy Allied losses. By Christmas fierce American resistance and fuel shortages brought the offensive to a halt. [4, 8, 22, 42, 75, 116]

  November 17  

Ki-83 heavy fighter takes its first flight [2]

November 18 The US Third Army enters Metz, France [1]
Japan conducts the first successful test of a rocket-powered Ohka aircraft

 


Shinano is comissioned into service at Yokosuka, Japan [2]


The British Fourteenth Army opens drive in Burma and crosses the Chindwin River at Sittaung [1]

November 19

30 members of the Luxembourgish resistance defend the town of Vianden, Luxembourg during WWII against German Waffen-SS troops. The Germans attacked with 250 soldiers, but were defeated at the Battle of Vianden Castle. [116]


British and Americans take Geilenkirchen [11]

Chinese troops capture Mangshih, Yunnan Province, China November 20

After 5 years of darkness, the lights come back on in Piccadilly Circus. Elsewhere in England the black-out will last until 1949 – ten very long years [122]

  November 21 The US Seventh and French First Armies enter Alsatian plain in France [1]
The 15,000th P-40 is completed at Buffalo, New York, United States November 22 The US Third Army takes the crucial town of Metz, France [1]

 


French take Mulhouse [11]

The U.S. launches the first B-29 raid on Tokyo. The attack marks the start of a 264-day bombing campaign against the Japanese capital that leaves 200,000 dead and more than a million homeless. [4]

November 23

T-44 medium tank is accepted for service.  It was designed in 1943-1944 under the leadership of Morozov and was intended to replace the T-34 in the role of the main medium tank. Serial production of the T-44 began in 1944.  1,823 T-44 tanks were produced. [2, 22]

 


The French First Army takes Strasbourg, France [1]


Chinese-American WASP Hazel Lee is injured in a landing accident at Great Falls, MT; she dies on Nov. 25, the last of 38 WASPs to die on duty. [1]


US troops liberate the Natzweiler-Struthof concentration camp. Between 19,000 and 20,000 people were murdered by the Nazis in the Natzweiler-Struthof camp system from May 1941 to March 1945. [118]

US B-29 bombers based in the Marianas Islands attack Tokyo for the first time [2]

 


Japanese capture Nanning, completing a land corridor between occupied China and Indochina [1]

November 24 In Terrace BC, Canadian conscripts (many are French-Canadian) mutiny when they hear they might be sent overseas, largest mutiny in Canadian history; put down by 11/29; news of mutiny is censored. [1]

 


In a controversial decision, Gen. Dwight Eisenhower orders the 6th Army Group not to cross the Rhine but to drive north and assist Patton’s Third Army [1]

Two kamikazes strike Intrepid, killing 69 crew members and injuring many more. [78]

November 25 A German V-2 rocket hits Woolworth department store in London, killing 168 [1]

 

As Soviets advance, Nazis demolish crematoria and gas chambers at Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp [1]

  November 26 US troops captured Monte Belvedere and Monte Castello, Italy [2]
Cordell Hull resigns as US Secretary of State [1] November 27  
Anglo-Indian troops capture Kalewa, Burma November 28 Albania is secured by partisans as Germans evacuate [1]

 


The Allies open the port of Antwerp, Belgium as the first convoy of supply ships arrives [1]

  November 29 Soviet and Yugoslavian troops cross the Danube River into Hungary [2]

 


Brazilian troops attack Monte Castello 61 kilometers southwest of Bologna, Italy [2]


German spies William Colepaugh and Erich Gimpel are landed by U-boat U-1230 at Hancock Point, ME; both are arrested by 1/1/45 [1]

  November 30 The Polish government puts Nazi commandant and guards from Majdanek concentration camp on trial [1]
Edward Stettinius becomes US Secretary of State after Cordell Hull’s resignation [1] December 1 Himmler orders the crematoriums and gas chambers of Auschwitz destroyed

 


Canadian forces open campaign to clear the Scheldt Estuary around the port of Antwerp, Belgium [1]

  December 2  
British begin offensive in Burma, with the Indian 20th Division crossing the Chindwin River at Kalewa. [1] December 3 Allied troops capture Blerick, the Netherlands [2]

 


British Eighth Army opens drive for Bologna, Italy [1]


Civil war breaks out in Greece between communists and royalists [1]

  December 4 Italian partisans liberate Ravenna in first major partisan attack in Italy [1]

 


The US Third Army crosses the Saar River at Saarlautern, Germany [1]

The US launches its final offensive on Leyte in the Philippines, driving into the Ormoc Valley [1] December 5  
  December 6 The German He 162 jet fighter made its first flight
  December 7 Nazi women’s leader Gertrud Scholtz-Klink asks all German women over 18 to volunteer to serve in the armed services to release men to the front [1]
Japanese troops capture Tushan, Jiangsu Province, China

 


The US Navy and US Army Air Force begin 72-day pre-invasion bombardment of Iwo Jima [1]

December 8  
  December 9 Russian troops reach the Danube River north of Budapest, Hungary [11]

 


The Bulgarian and Yugoslavian armies drive the last German forces from Serbia and Macedonia [1]


British troops arrive in Athens, Greece to put down the communist uprising [1]

On Leyte in the Philippines, the US Sixth Army takes Ormoc, the main supply base [1] December 10  
Ormoc Bay is completely secured by the US in the Philippines. More importantly, Ormoc yielded vast stockpiles of munitions from the Japanese Thirty-fifth Army [15] December 11  
Allied troops attack the Arakan region of Burma December 12  
  December 13  
  December 14  
  December 15  
  December 16  

USAAF 509th Composite Group is activated for atomic bomb delivery [2]

December 17

The Malmedy Massacre occurs when 120 members of the U.S. army, Battery B, 285th Field Artillery Observation Battalion are captured by the 1st SS Panzer Division and executed by machine gun fire. “Avenge Malmedy” became a battle cry for American forces and four days later 21 German soldiers attempting to surrender were killed in an act of revenge [18, 116]

  December 18  
  December 19 In the Battle of the Bulge, the US 101st Airborne Division arrives in Bastogne, Belgium to protect the crucial crossroads. Bastogne is almost fully surrounded [1, 15]
  December 20 Dwight Eisenhower, Supreme Allied Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Force in Europe, is appointed 5-star general of the army [1]

 


US terminates WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilots) program—returning combat airmen will perform ferrying services; 1037 women served, with 38 fatalities. [1]

The US Sixth Army secures Ormoc Valley on Leyte [1] December 21 In the Battle of the Bulge, the Germans surround US troops in Bastogne, Belgium and take the crossroads at St. Vith [1]

 


SS Samtucky (British) while in Convoy HX-327, torpedoed by a Gnat fired from U-806 eighteen km from Halifax. The freighter was able to return to Halifax where it was beached and later repaired. No casualties. [61]


US forces capture Stavelot, Belgium [2]

  December 22  
Indian 2nd and 20th Divisions reach Pyingaing, Burma [2] December 23 Adolf Eichmann flees Budapest, Hungary before dawn [2]

 


At Papago Park camp, AZ, 25 German POWs escape, ecstatic about successes in Battle of the Bulge, but plan to float down a river to Mexico goes awry due to dry riverbed; all recaptured by 1/28/45 [1]


US C-47 cargo planes drop supplies, including medical supplies, into surrounded Bastogne, Belgium [1]

  December 24  
  December 25  
  December 26

U.S. General George S. Patton and his Third Army break the German encirclement of U.S. forces at Bastogne, Belgium during the Battle of the Bulge, thus ending Nazi Germany’s last major offensive of World War II. [11, 47, 116]

  December 27 Soviets encircle Budapest, Hungary, beginning 102-day siege [1]

 


HMCShips ST. THOMAS, , a Castle Class corvette, & SEA CLIFF attack & sink German submarine U-877 using Squid mortar while escorting convoy HX-237 in the North Atlantic. [31, 61]


The final Glider resupply mission, the biggest to date, lands at Bastogne carrying desperately needed ammunition, particularly of a larger calibre. All 50 gliders are provided by the 439th TCG, with them also providing 37 of the tow aircraft, the rest coming from the 440th TCG. Due to the lack of Glider Pilots in France at the time, and the rapid nature of the planning, there are no co-pilots. 12 GP’s are captured by the Germans, are 4 are KIA [136]


Elements of the 3rd Battalion, 517th PIR, attacked Manhay, Belgium, during the Battle of the Bulge. In the early part of the attack a devastating pre-attack Artillery barrage fell late, and short of Manhay, hitting the Paratroopers as they crossed open ground. 1944: Elements of the 3rd Battalion, 517th PIR, attacked Manhay, Belgium, during the Battle of the Bulge. In the early part of the attack a devastating pre-attack Artillery barrage fell late, and short of Manhay, hitting the Paratroopers as they crossed open ground [111]


Axis troops captured Pian di Coreglia, Italy. [2]

  December 28  
  December 29  
  December 30  

46,000 U.S. troops storm the Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands. The Japanese offer fierce resistance; of the 3,500 Imperial troops dug in there, only 51 survive after four days of savage fighting. [4]

December 31 Hitler’s generals carry out Germany’s last major offensive in the West. Operation Nordwind sees Wehrmacht and SS troops strike at U.S. and French forces in Alsace and Lorraine. The push fails to forestall the Third Reich’s inevitable collapse. [4]

 

Hungary switches sides in World War II. The Soviet-backed government declares war on Germany. Hungary had hoped to be a non-belligerent during the war, but reluctantly aligned with Nazi #Germany in Nov 1940. [116]


US troops execute 3 Germans dressed in American uniforms in the Ardennes during the Battle of the Bulge [15]

1945
  January 1  
  January 2 An American Sikorsky helicopter is used in naval convoy escort for the first time [1]
  January 3  
  January 4  
  January 5  
The first contingent of WAVES arrive in Hawaii; 4000 will serve there [1]

 


USS Walke (DD 723) is attacked by four kamikazes. After the third plane struck the ship, fire envelopes the bridge and Cmdr. Davis is horribly burned.  [74]

January 6

Finland lifts a ban on dancing, which was made illegal near the beginning of the Winter War and again during the Continuation War [116]

Off Manila Bay, US destroyers Charles Ausburne, Braine, Russell, and Shaw sink the Japanese destroyer Hinoki in the last surface naval engagement of the Pacific war [1] January 7 The German Navy begins evacuating troops trapped by the Soviet advance along the Baltic in Lithuania [1]
The Japanese execute Filipino resistance leader Col. Pastor Martelino [1]

 


In Placer County, CA, the home of a recently returned Japanese-American family is attacked (shed burned and shots fired), the first of 30 similar incidents on the West Coast [1]

January 8 The Germans demolish floodgates on the Ruhr River, flooding the area west of Cologne [1]
The Battle of Luzon begins with 175K troops from the 6th Army landing along the 20-mile beachhead of Lingayen Gulf in the Philippines [15]

 


The US Sixth Army lands at Lingayen Gulf on Luzon in the Philippines; beachhead is established as Japanese have withdrawn inland [1]

January 9  
  January 10  
On Luzon, Filipino guerrillas take Aguilar and Santa Barbara, linking with US troops [1]

 


Japanese submarines begin operation Kongo, employing suicide torpedoes (kaiten) at Ulithi Atoll, damaging 2 American ships [1]

January 11  
In Burma, the Indian 19th Division attempts to cross the Irrawaddy River at Thabaikkyin but withdraws under fierce Japanese bayonet attack [1] January 14 The US 357th Fighter Group downs 56.5 aircraft over Germany, the highest single day total for any US Army Air Force fighter group in WWII. [1]

 

The Soviet 1st Ukrainian Front crosses the Nida River in Poland [2]


U-1232 attacks Convoy BX-141 off Chedabucto Head, sinking MV British Freedom, SS Martin Van Buren, & MV Athelviking. HMCS ETTRICK rams U-boat followed by several Depth Charges attacks. Incredibly U-1232 survived & return to Norway severely damaged. [61]

  January 12

The Soviets begin the Vistula–Oder Offensive against the Germans during World War II. The successful offensive resulted in the capture of most of Poland and included the liberation of Auschwitz concentration camp. [116]


Minesweeper HMS Regulus is heavily damaged by a mine in the Corfu Channel, losing her propellers and suffering serious flooding. She capsized and sinks shortly after being taken in tow. One rating was killed when the mine exploded [137]

  January 13  
  January 14

The 29th Canadian MTB Flotilla (12 boats) is destroyed in a catastrophic fire at Ostende Harbour, Belgium. 26 RCN sailors are killed & boats 459, 461, 462, 465 & 466 are lost, effectively wiping out the flotilla. The explosion, caused by leaking fuel that ignited in a crowded dock, killed 64 men – the worst disaster to befall Coastal Forces in the war. [61, 147]


British and Canadian troops reach the Rhine River northwest of Duisberg, Germany [2]

The Japanese launch a drive towards the isolated US Fourteenth Air Force bases in eastern China and toward the Hengyang-Canton railroad [1] January 15 In the US, a nationwide dim-out is ordered to conserve fuel [1]
  January 16

An increasingly desperate Adolf Hitler retreats to a concrete bunker deep beneath Berlin’s bombed out streets. Within 104 days, the Red Army will be in the German capital and the Führer will be dead. he remains for 105 days until he commits suicide on April 30, 1945, [4, 116]


HMCS Saint John (K456) sinks the German submarine U-309 east of Moray Firth in Scotland, while escorting Convoy WN-74 during the Battle of the Atlantic. All hands were lost. [51]

  January 17 The Soviet-controlled Polish First Army finally entered Warsaw, or rather what was left of the ruined city on the left bank of the Vistula river.

 

Before the Soviets entered Warsaw, the Polish Home Army tried to liberate its capital while the Soviets stood by as the Germans slaughtered them. [1, 55, 116]

 

Nazis lead 66,000 prisoners from Auschwitz on a death march to Germany [1]


Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg, who saved tens of thousands of Jews, is detained by the Soviets in Budapest, Hungary and disappears [1]

  January 18  
  January 19  
  January 20 Hungary signs surrender to the Allies in Moscow [1]

 


President Franklin D. Roosevelt is inaugurated for his fourth term [1]

Kamikazes hit the US Third Fleet off Luzon and damage the carrier USS Ticonderoga (143 killed), but TF 38 aircraft sink 15 Japanese ships and destroy 104 aircraft [1] January 21
The Indian 20th Division takes Monywa in Burma, the last Japanese port on the Chindwin River [1] January 22

Soviets capture Allenstein and Insterburg in eastern Germany [2]

In the shallow harbor of Nanguan Island, China, sub USS Barb sinks Japanese freighter Taikyu Maru; Cdr. Eugene Fluckey will receive the Medal of Honor; Barb will receive Presidential Unit Citation [1]

 


Anglo-Indian troops capture Myinmu, Burma [2]

January 23 The US Army captured St. Vith, the last German stronghold in the Ardennes “bulge.” [1, 15]

 

The Nazis execute German resistance leaders Count Helmuth von Moltke (leader of Kreisau Circle resistance group) and Erwin Planck (son of physicist Max Planck) [1]


During WWII, Germany launches Operation Hannibal. Over 15 weeks, hundreds of merchant vessels and navy ships carry 800K-900K German civilians and 350K soldiers from Prussia. Three times more than were evacuated from Dunkirk. [116]

  January 24 German troops begin evacuating from Slovakia as Soviets advance [1]

 


At Mauthausen, Nazis execute 9 US OSS agents, 4 British SOE agents & an Associated Press reporter, all arrested with Slovakian partisans on mission to evacuate downed airmen. Associated Press reporter Joseph Morton was the only Allied war correspondent executed by the Axis in WWII [1]

Anglo-Indian and Japanese troops clash at Kabwet, Burma [2] January 25

in Kuźnica Żelichowska in WartheGau, a Waffen-SS unit murdered former Italian Generals during the evacuation process of the camp with Italian POW’s. In the summer of 1943 650,000 Italian soldiers refused to fight on the German side [55]


Allied forces have recaptured all of the ground lost during the Battle of the Bulge, closing out the largest land battle fought by the US Army in WWII [144]

  January 26 Wounded Audie Murphy single-handedly repels tank and infantry attacks in France earning him the Congressional Medal of Honor
US Twentieth Bomber Command (B-29s) evacuates from Chengtu, China to Kharagpur, India as Japanese advance in China [1] January 27 Over 7,000 prisoners of the German Nazi Auschwitz and Birkenau camps, including ca. 700 children, were liberated by the soldiers of the 322nd Rifle Division of the Soviet army. 1,689 days of murder, humiliation, suffering, and pain were over. Following prisoner evacuation & death marches westwards, Soviet troops liberated c.7000 & discovered the corpses of c.600 prisoners in the main camps. [1, 6, 17, 24, 25, 49, 116, 126, 131]

 

The Siege of Leningrad finally ends after a staggering 872 days [24]

  January 28  
The US Eighth Army lands in Subic Bay near San Antonio,
on Luzon and takes the San Marcelino airfields [1, 2]

 

At Guadalcanal, the US Coast Guard attack cargo ship Serpens explodes while depth charges are being loaded; 196 crewmen & 57 Army stevedores killed, the greatest loss on a Coast Guard ship in WWII [1]

January 29 Allied troops captured Oberhausen, Germany [2]
Army Rangers, Alamo Scouts & Filipino guerrillas rescue 552 Allied prisoners from the Japanese POW camp at Cabanatuan [4]

 


US 1st Cavalry Division begins its advance on Manila, Philippines [2]

January 30

A Soviet sub sinks the German liner the MV Wilhelm Gustloff off the Baltic Sea during WWII, killing ~7000-8000 people, including civilians from East Prussia and wounded German soldiers. It is the largest naval disaster in history [116]

The Battle of Hill 170, fought between British 3rd Commando Brigade and the Japanese 54th Division in Arakan, Burma, ends in Allied victory. Japanese forces withdraw from Arakan [57]

January 31 U.S. Army private named Eddie Slovik is shot by a firing squad 
at Sainte-Marie-aux-Mines, France for desertion. He was the only U.S. soldier executed for desertion during WWII and the first since the Civil War. He had stated he would continue to desert if sent back to the front [4, 116]

 

The British clear the last German bridgehead across the Maas [11]

  February 1 The US First Army captures Remscheid in Germany [2]

Anglo-Indian troops capture Kangaw, Burma [2]

February 2 French troops capture Colmar, France [2]
US forces engage Japanese troops in Manila, Philippines February 3

Gen. Marshall & the U.S. delegation arrived at the Livadia Palace in Crimea for the Yalta Conference with UK and USSR representatives. The Yalta Conference, with Winston Churchill (UK), Franklin D. Roosevelt (USA) and Joseph Stalin (USSR), begins [145]

The first Allied truck convoy over the reopened Burma Road arrives in Kunming, China [1] February 4 The Allies liberate Belgium [1]

 

Prime Minister Winston Churchill, President Franklin Roosevelt and dictator Joseph Stalin meet at Livadia Palace in the Crimea beginning the Yalta Conference to determine how to organize post-war Europe [1, 116]

  February 5 The US Seventh and French Armies link, splitting the Colmar pocket in France [1]

 


The RAF Balloon Command is disbanded as the air raid threat lessens [1]

  February 6  
  February 7  
  February 8 The Canadian First Army opens a drive for the Rhine from Nijmegen in the Netherlands, often in flooded conditions [1]

 


The Norwegian resistance (Milorg) kills Maj. Gen. Karl Marthinson, head of Norwegian state police [1]

The British secure Ramree Island, Burma [1] February 9 In rare sub vs. sub combat and the only documented case in naval history where both were submerged, British submarine HMS Venturer sinks German U-boat U-864 off Bergen, Norway. [1]

 


The US Seventh & French First Armies clear the Colmar Pocket and Alsatian Plain and drive the Germans over the Rhine south of Strasbourg, France [1]

A US P-51 deliberately damages a US C-47 to prevent the cargo plane from mistakenly landing at a Japanese airfield in the Philippines; the C-47 ditches at sea and all aboard rescued next day [1] February 10 The Soviet submarine S-13 sinks the German transport Steuben, killing 3800 military personnel & civilians fleeing East Prussia. S-13 also sank Wilhelm Gustloff, making sub commander Alexander Marinesko the most lethal in history and the most successful Soviet commander in tonnage. [1]
At the Yalta Conference, Stalin pledges to declare war on Japan within 3 months of the German surrender [1] February 11 The Yalta Agreement is signed by Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin [2]
B-29 Superfortresses of the US XXI Bomber Command begin pre-invasion bombing of Iwo Jima [1] February 12  
  February 13 The RAF and US Air Force planes begin to drop around 2,400 tons of explosives and 1,500 tons of incendiary bombs on the German city of Dresden

 


German & Hungarian forces surrendered to the Allies in Budapest. 38,000 civilians died during the siege & after in labor camps. Budapest was in ruins with about 80% of buildings destroyed. [15]

  February 14 British and Canadian troops reach the Rhine River northwest of Duisberg, Germany

 


Starting late on Feb. 13, 805 RAF bombers & 311 US Eighth Air Force B-17s bomb Dresden, Germany, starting firestorm that kills at least 37,000. [1]

As the Japanese advance, the US Fourteenth Air Force evacuates the last of its eastern China airfields, it can no longer raid the South China Sea [1]

 


The US Sixth Army lands at Mariveles on tip of the Bataan peninsula on Luzon, and takes Mariveles and its airfield [1]

February 15 The first African-American members of the Women’s Army Corps arrive in the UK [1]
US paratroopers attack Corregidor, Philippines [2] February 16  
For the second day in a row, carriers of US Fifth Fleet strike Tokyo, while Fifth Fleet warships bombard Iwo Jima [1] February 17  
  February 18 In Germany, the US Third Army crosses the Siegfried Line north of Echternach [1]
  February 19  
  February 20  
  February 21  
  February 22 Operation Clarion is launched: 6000 aircraft of the RAF and US Eighth, Ninth, and Fifteenth Air Forces aim to destroy German communications and isolate the industrial Ruhr Valley [1]

 


The US Fifth Army secures the Upper Reno Valley in Italy [1]

The US Marines Michael Strank, Harlon Block, Franklin Sousley, Rene Gagnon, Ira Hayes, and Harold Schultz raise the flag on Mt. Suribachi on Iwo Jima; immortalized by Associated Press photographer Joe Rosenthal [1]

 


Troops of the US 11th Airborne liberate 2147 POWs at Los Baños, Luzon [1]

February 23 In Arctic convoy RA-64, the US freighter Henry Bacon shoots down 3 Luftwaffe Ju 88 bombers, a Liberty ship record, but is sunk in turn—the last Allied ship lost to German aircraft in the war [1]
  February 24 Egyptian Prime Minister Ahmed Maher Pasha declares war on the Axis and is immediately assassinated in the parliament chamber [1]

 


Hitler makes his last speech in the Chancellery in Berlin [1]

US B-29 bombers and Fifth Fleet carrier aircraft strike Tokyo in a devastating raid [1] February 25 Turkey breaks neutrality and declares war on Germany and Japan [1]

 


US M26 Pershing tanks are first used in combat in Europe [1]

The US Sixth Army begins assault on last three Japanese strongholds in Manila [1]

 


American troops capture Corregidor, Philippine Islands [2]


The Indian 2nd Division completes the crossing of the Irrawady River at Ngazumi, Burma [2]

February 26 The US Ninth Army reaches the Rhine south of Düsseldorf, Germany [1]
General Douglas MacArthur officially turns over the government of the Philippines to President Sergio Osmeña [1]

 


The US Sixth Army secures Corregidor in the Philippines [1]

February 27 Lebanon joins many other nations in last-minute declarations of war on Germany and Japan—all who join the Allies before March 1 will be invited to the upcoming United Nations conference [1]
  February 28  
The US Sixth Army secures Manila after furious house-to-house fighting; 100,000 civilians have been killed by the Japanese [1] March 3 The US Ninth Army and Canadian troops link between the Maas and Rhine rivers [1]
The British Fourteenth Army takes Meiktila, Burma [1]

 


A B-29 Superfortress lands at Iwo Jima, the first of 2400 B-29s to use the airfields for emergency landings [1]

March 4  
All Japanese pockets of resistance at Meiktila, Burma have been eliminated

 


First prototype of Nakajima Ki-115 Tsuragi special attack aircraft was completed [2]

March 5 The German Army begins conscripting fifteen-year-old boys [1]

 


Fortress Graudenz is captured by the Soviet 2nd Byelorussian Front [2]

  March 6 The Germans launch offensive to retake Hungarian oil fields—will have partial, temporary success [1]

 


The Dutch resistance ambushes a truck at Woeste Hoeve, injuring Hanns Rauter, head of the Dutch SS [1]


Medical evacuation flights begin from Iwo Jima under artillery fire; first time a flight nurse flies into an active battlefield [1]


The US First Army takes Cologne (Köln), Germany; in retreat, Germans destroy the Hohenzollern Bridge [1]

  March 7 The Ohio River floods Pittsburgh and Louisville, slowing war production [1]

 


The US 9th Armored Division unexpectedly captures Ludendorff Bridge over the Rhine at Remagen. 800 troops cross the first day [1,2,14]

US Navy swears in its first African-American nurse, Phyllis Daley [1]

 


US intelligence first detects the new Ohka aircraft at Konoike airfield [2]

March 8 US troops enter Bonn, Germany [2]

 


German commandos from the Nazi-occupied Channel Islands raid Granville, Normandy at night, free 55 German POWs, and capture 30 Americans [1]


Nazis kill 262 Dutch prisoners & civilians in reprisal for March 6 resistance attack at at Woeste Hoeve, plus a German soldier who refuses to participate in the massacre [1]


Soviet troops reach the suburbs of Breslau, Germany [2]

On Iwo Jima, US Marines repulse a large banzai suicide attack and reach the far coast, dividing Japanese forces [1]

 


On the night of March 9-10, US B-29s launch first major incendiary raid on Tokyo—97,000 are killed in the most destructive air attack of the entire war [1]

March 9 At Fort Devens, MA, black Women’s Army Corps orderlies at the hospital go on strike to protest the lack of opportunity for technical training; 4 women choose to face court-martial for mutiny [1]

 


The US Third Army captures Andernach, Germany [2]

US Eighth Army lands at Zamboanga on Mindanao in the Philippines [1]

 


Anglo-Indian troops continue to assault Mandalay Hill near Mandalay, Burma [2]

March 10 British and Canadians clear the west bank of the Rhine in their sectors [1]

 


The German navy completes evacuation of Danzig and Gdynia [1]


Over 25,000 civilians are evacuated from Kolberg by sea [2]

Emperor Bao Dai of Nguyen Dynasty declares Vietnamese independence from France, with Japanese support [1] March 11 The US Third Army captures Kochem, Germany

 


Seventy German POWs escape from a camp at Bridgend, Wales — all will be recaptured by March 17 [1]

  March 12 RAF sends 1108 bombers to Dortmund, Germany, dropping 4851 tons of bombs, an RAF record for both tonnage and bombers to a single target [1]
King Norodom Sihanouk declares Cambodian independence from France (under Japanese), changes name of country to Kampuchea, reinstates Khmer script, ending Romanization of Khmer language [1]

 


US B-29s launch fire raid on Osaka, killing 4000 and destroying 119 factories. [1]

March 13 51st Field Hospital crosses the Rhine River at Remagen, Germany, the first US hospital to do so [1]
The First US infantry arrive in China, the Mars Task Force, ferried by the Air Transport Command [1] March 14 In the RAF’s first use of the 22,000-lb Grand Slam, bombers hit the Bielefeld and Arnsberg rail viaducts, and the Bielefeld viaduct collapses [1]
  March 15 Canadian I Corps enters service in northern Europe after transfer from Italy [1]

 


the US War Production Board makes penicillin available for civilian use [1]

US B-29 bombers attack Kobe, Japan, causing 15,000 casualties

 


Air base opens on Iwo Jima for P-47 & P-51 fighter planes to escort B-29 bombers [1]

March 16 Soviets launch offensive toward Vienna [1]
B-29 bombers destroy 7 square kilometers of Kobe, Japan, killing 8,841 March 17  
First flight of the Douglas A-1 Skyraider March 18 American single-seat attack aircraft

 


US Third Army captures Boppard, Germany

Off Honshu, Japan, kamikazes damage carrier USS Franklin, killing 894 [1] March 19 Hitler issues “Nero Decree” for scorched-earth retreat—Germans are to destroy factories, railroads, and bridges, but the decree is largely ignored [1]
Indian 19th Infantry Division captures Mandalay, Burma [1]

 


On Luzon, a Filipino force takes San Fernando, led by US Col. Russell Volckmann, who had refused to surrender to the Japanese in 1942 [1]

March 20 US Third Army reaches Mainz, Germany
US Eighth Army secures Panay in the Philippines [1] March 22 Soviet forces capture Braunsberg in East Prussia, Germany

 


Americans cross Rhine below Mainz [11]


US Third Army under Gen. George Patton crosses the Rhine at Nierstein and Oppenheim at night, surprising the Germans [1]

  March 23 the VOMAG factory was bombed heavily. Production of the Panzer IV/70 stopped due to heavy damage. 970 of these tank destroyers were built out of 2020 planned. [22]

 


Soviets reach the Gulf of Danzig between Danzig and Gdynia [1]


British Second Army crosses the Rhine at Wesel, Germany. [1]

  March 24 US Fifteenth Air Force based in Italy sends 660 B-17 and B-24 bombers to Berlin for the first time as a diversion for the Rhine crossings. In US Fifteenth Air Force raid to Berlin, the 332nd Fighter Group (African-American Tuskegee Airmen), shoots down 3 German Me 262 jets and earns the Distinguished Unit Citation [1]

 


In Operation Varsity, 17,000 British 6th Airborne Division & US 17th Airborne Division paratroopers drop east of the Rhine and link with Allied land forces [1]


US Ninth Army crosses the Rhine in Germany [1]


the M22 Locust tank saw its first use in battle during Operation Varsity. 8 tanks launched by glider, 2 were shot down, 3 were damaged upon landing. While effective against infantry, these tanks were essentially obsolete. [22]

  March 25 The US Seventh Army crosses the Rhine at Worms, Germany [1]

 


German SS troops behind US lines assassinate Allied-backed mayor of Aachen, Germany [1]


The US Fifteenth Air Force based in Italy flies its last strategic mission of war: 650 B-17 & B-24 bombers hit Prague and Cheb, Czechoslovakia [1]

The US Eighth Army lands on Cebu in the Philippines [1]

 


The Battle of Iwo Jima officially ends: in the campaign, 5400 US and 20,000 Japanese troops were killed—and only 216 POWs taken. Battle of Iwo Jima officially ends: Adm. Chester Nimitz will say, “Among the men who fought on Iwo Jima, uncommon valor was a common virtue.” [1]


The US Tenth Army lands on Kerama Islands near Okinawa to build artillery base; seizes 350 suicide torpedo boats [1]

March 26  
The Japanese-trained Burma National Army under Aung San revolts and joins the Allies [1]

 


The US Eighth Army takes Cebu City, the second-largest city in the Philippines [1]

March 27 The US Third Army captures Aschaffenburg, Germany

 


The Soviet Army enters Danzig encountering heavy resistance


Last German V-2 rockets land in Britain—in London (131 killed) and in Kent, where Ivy Millichamp becomes the last of 67,000 British civilians killed during the war. [1]

  March 28 The Soviet 1st Byelorussian Front captures Gotenhafen and Danzig

 


Soviets take crucial port of Gdynia on the Baltic [1]


US Eighth Air Force flies final bombing mission to Berlin [1]


The US 1st Army captures Marburg, Germany


British War Cabinet meets for final time in the underground Cabinet War Rooms in London, now called the Churchill War Rooms [1]

  March 29 Soviet units capture the Komorn oil fields in Hungary
The Indian 19th Division captures Kyaukse south of Mandalay, Burma

 


British and Chinese secure northern Burma [1]

March 30 Soviet troops enter into Danzig [1]

 


Soviets enter Austria [1]


Allies get first close-up look at a German Me 262 jet fighter when a defecting pilot delivers one to American forces [1]


Last German V-1 flying bomb reaches England and is shot down by an antiaircraft gunner; in the V-weapon campaign, V-1s have killed 6284, V-2s have killed 2754. [1]

  March 31 Soviet troops capture Ratibor and Katscher, Germany

 


The US Third Army reaches Siegen, Germany


Free French Army crosses the Rhine near Speyer, Germany, the first French troops to cross the Rhine since Napoleon [1]

US invades Okinawa

 


US Tenth Army and Marines invade Okinawa; 60,000 troops land by nightfall [1]

April 1 US First and Ninth Armies meet at Lippstadt, Germany, encircling the industrial Ruhr Valley and 500,000 German soldiers in Army Group B [1]
On Okinawa, US opens Yontan and Kadena airfields for emergency and reconnaissance use; first aircraft lands at Yontan, a Marine Corps OY observation aircraft [1]

 


US Tenth Army reaches the east coast on Okinawa, dividing the island [1]

April 2 British take Rheine and Muenster [11]

 


Soviet troops capture Wiener Neustadt

  April 3 Soviet 2nd Ukrainian Front take Wiener Neustadt, Austria [1]

 


British commandos & Italian partisans secure islands in Comacchio Lagoon, Italy [1]

  April 4  
  April 5 French First Army captures Karlsruhe, Germany
The Japanese battleship Yamato, the largest battleship ever constructed, is sunk by American aircraft. Japan’s Yamato, on a suicide mission, is sunk by US Navy Task Force 58 planes off Okinawa (3055 killed) [1,11]

 


P-51 Mustang fighter planes based on Iwo Jima escort B-29 Superfortress bombers over Japan for the first time [1]

April 7 US Third Army finds Nazi art and gold stash in salt mine in Merkers worth $500 million [1]
  April 8 Soviets surround Vienna, Austria [1]

 


The Royal Air Force bombs Lützkendorf in the final raid in the Allied campaign against the German oil industry [1]


The US Seventh Army captures Pforzheim in southwestern Germany

US Eighth Army lands unopposed on Jolo in the Philippines [1] April 9 Soviets take Königsberg, Germany after a long siege [1,11]

 


British Eighth Army opens its final offensive in Italy near Bologna [1]


Nazis execute German resistance members – pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Adm. Wilhelm Canaris, Hans von Dohnanyi, and Gen. Hans Oster in Flossenbürg concentration camp. [1]

US troops capture Jolo and Lamon Bay in the Philippines April 10 In Germany, US Ninth Army takes Hannover, Düren, Gelsenkirchen, Bochum, and Essen [1]

 


US Eighth Air Force sends 1315 bombers to strike German jet bases, which leads to the essential end of the jet program [1]

  April 11 The US Third Army captures Weimar, Germany
Over Okinawa, US Marine land- and carrier-based aircraft shoot down 77 Japanese aircraft, the Marines’ highest number of victories in a single day during the war [1] April 12 Canadian troops liberated Westerbork Transit Camp in the Netherlands. 876 inmates were held there when the Canadian troops arrived. Many Dutch Jews were sent to the east from the camp. [31]

 


President Franklin D. Roosevelt dies in Warm Springs, GA of a cerebral hemorrhage. Harry Truman is sworn in as president. [1]

  April 13 The British 78th Infantry Division secures a bridgehead at Bastia in northern Italy
  April 14 US Fifth Army launches final offensive in Italy, toward the Po Valley [1]

 


Zwolle in the Netherlands is liberated singlehandedly by Canadian Private Léo Major on a reconnaissance mission [1]


US Third Army takes Bayreuth, Germany [1]

  April 15 British troops liberate Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp in Germany [1,26,33,34,35]

 


Arnhem is finally liberated, by British and Canadian troops [36]


Canadians reach North Sea west of Emden [11]


The US Eighth Air Force B-17 & B-24 heavy bombers hit German strongpoints in Royan, France, with the Eighth Air Force’s only use of napalm during the war. [1]

US Army troops land on Ie Shima off Okinawa, Japan April 16 US First Army captures Solingen and Wuppertal, Germany
US Eighth Army lands on Mindanao in the Philippines at Malabang and Parang [1] April 17 Russians launch full-scale drive on Berlin [11]

 


Brazilian troops capture Montese, Italy

American correspondent Ernie Pyle is killed by a Japanese sniper on the island of Ie Shima [1] April 18 US First Army closes the Ruhr pocket in Germany and takes 325,000 prisoners [1]

 


US Third Army crosses the Czechoslovakian border [1]


Canadians reach the Zuider Zee, cutting off German 25th Army in the Netherlands [1]

US Tenth Army opens offensive on Shuri Line on Okinawa, supported by one of the largest naval bombardments of the war, by US Task Forces 54 and 58 [1] April 19 Americans take Leipzig and Halle; liquidate Ruhr pocket. Allied breakthrough in Italy [11]
  April 20 As Soviet artillery begins to bombard Berlin and Nazi leaders flee, Hitler celebrates his final birthday [1]

 


Hitler divides command, with himself over the eastern front and Berlin, Adm. Karl Dönitz over the western front, and Field Marshal Albert Kesselring over the southern front. [1]


Hermann Göring destroys his lavish Karinhall home, transporting art to Berchtesgaden and Unterstein [1]


US Seventh Army takes Nuremberg and raises American flag in the Zeppelinfeld, the famous Nazi stadium [1]

  April 21 US Fifth Army and Polish II Corps take Bologna, Italy [1,11]

 


French First Army captures Stuttgart, Germany [1]

  April 22 Russians take Troppau (Opava) [11]

 


US troops hold a victory parade in Nuremberg rally grounds (Zeppelinfeld) and blow up the swastika [1]


As Soviet troops enter outskirts of Berlin, Hitler vows to stay in the city. [1]

Indian National Army surrendered to Allies at Pyu, Burma [2] April 23 Soviet troops enter Berlin proper [1]

 


SS troops finish executing the last 20 conspirators in the July 20 Hitler assassination attempt, including Klaus Bonhoeffer and Rüdiger Schleicher, Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s brother & brother-in-law [1]


US Fifth Army crosses the Po River in Italy and takes La Spezia [1]

On Okinawa, US Tenth Army breaches Japanese defenses at the Shuri Line, and Marines take Kakazu Ridge [1] April 24 Blackout is lifted in Britain except certain coastal areas [1]
  April 25 Russians encircle Berlin [11]
  April 26  
  April 27 Italian partisans capture Benito Mussolini

 


Americans take Augsburg, Regensburg, Ingoldstadt, enter Austria [11]

  April 28 In Milan, Italian dictator Benito Mussolini and his mistress, Clara Petacci, are executed by Italian partisans [1,11]

 


US troops discover Nazi art stash at Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria [1]

  April 29 Allies take Milan, Venice, Genoa [11]

 

At Caserta, Italy, German Gen. Heinrich von Vietinghoff signs the surrender of 1 million troops in Italy & Austria, effective May 2 [1]


Hitler marries Eva Braun [1]


RAF begins Operation Manna, dropping food to Dutch civilians [1]


US Seventh Army liberates Dachau concentration camp [1]


The 36th Infantry Division liberates the Landsburg camp, a sub camp of Dachau. Many of the soldiers took pictures to document the horrors they saw. [104]

  April 30 Hitler commits suicide

 


Americans take Munich [11]

  April 31  
Operation Oboe 1 the U. S. Navy (USN) lands the Australian Army 9th Division on Tarakan Island off Borneo with U. S. Army Air Force aircraft providing aerial support [1,37]

 


Mexican Air Force arrives in Manila with P-47 fighters to fly for the Allies; the “Aztec Eagles” will fly 795 sorties and lose 7 pilots [1]

May 1 Leadership of Germany passes to Adm. Karl Dönitz after Hitler’s suicide the day before [1]

 


US Eighth Air Force flies first “Chow Hound” mission, dropping food and supplies to Dutch civilians [1]

The British Army 26 Division (Indian) liberates Rangoon Prison and discovers 50 U. S. Prisoners Of War (POWs) too weak to flee when the Japanese commandant released the surviving prisoners in late April. [37] May 2 German forces in Italy and Austria surrender [11]

 


The @5CdnDiv (Armoured) fights its last battle of the Second World War near Delfzijl, Netherlands. German pockets of resistance at Weiwerd and Farmsum were defeated and many prisoners were taken. Delfzijl itself was cleared the day before. [31]

  May 3 British take Hamburg; Canadians take Oldenburg. British and Russian forces make contact on Baltic coast. [11]
USS Lagarto (SS-371) was sunk by a depth charge from minelayer Hatsutaka with the loss of the 86 crew. [37] May 4 Fleet Air Arm struck at a U-boat base in northern Norway – the final carrier operation of #WW2 in Europe – sinking one submarine and two ships [38]

 


Montgomery accepts the unconditional surrender of the German forces in North-West Europe at Lüneburg Heath. It includes all forces in theNetherlands, northwest Germany including all islands, in Denmark and all naval ships in those areas [1,11,13]


Americans take Salzburg and Innsbruck, make junction with forces from Italy [11]


US Seventh Army coming from Austria and US Fifth Army from Italy meet at Vipiteno on Italian side of Brenner Pass in the Alps [1]

In Lakeview, OR, one woman and five children are killed by a Japanese balloon bomb, the only civilians killed in the continental US by enemy action [1]

 


The Allies secure Burma. [1]

May 5 General Charles Foulkes accepted the surrender of German forces in the Netherlands at Wageningen at the Hotelde Wereld. More than 7,600 Canadians died fighting to liberate the Netherlands [31]

 


American and Wehrmacht soldiers join forces to defend an Austrian castle full of captured French dignitaries from a regiment of crack SS troops. The Battle of Schloss Itter will be remembered as one of the oddest moments of WW2. For the only time in the war, US and German forces fight side by side to defeat the SS troops. [1,4]


In the Last German U-boat attack off the US coast, U-853 sinks US cargo ship Black Point. [1]


Mauthausen, one of the worst of the Nazi concentration camps, is liberated by the Americans [40]

B-24 Liberators from the Far East Air Force (FEAF) bomb Kudat Airfield at the northern tip of Borneo in Sabah State in Malaysia Borneo [37] May 6 Americans take Pilsen [11]
The 17th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron (17th PRS) moves to Puerto Princesa Airfield on Palawan where they will operate until the end of the Pacific War. [37] May 7 In the early hours of 7 May 1945 Germany surrenders unconditionally to the Allies. General Eisenhower’s Headquarters. Rheims. General Alfred Jodl, the representative of the German High Command, signed the act of unconditional surrender of all German land, sea and air forces in Europe to the Allies [1,11,39, 41, 42]

 


Last victims of Battle of Atlantic—off Scotland, German U-boat U-2336 sinks Canadian transport Avondale Park and Norwegian transport Sneland I, and U-1023 sinks Norwegian minesweeper NYMS-382. [1]


Soviets take Breslau after 82-day siege [1]

US secures Leyte in the Philippines [1]

 


In Indochina (Vietnam) 14th Air Force P-51s Mustangs pound boxcars, locomotives, and other railroad targets from Tourane (Da Nang) to Hue. [37]

May 8 The war in Europe officially ended, at 2301. V-E Day (Victory in Europe Day)—the US and the western Allies celebrate as the German surrender becomes official [1,13,15]

 


Off Bergen, Norway, an RAF Catalina sinks U-320, the last German U-boat sunk in the war [1]


US troops and Monuments Men discover art stash at Altaussee, Austria, saved by Austrian civilians [1]

  May 9 Germans capitulate to Czech Partisans in Prague [1]

 


V-E (Victory in Europe) Day is celebrated by the USSR [1]

  May 10  
  May 11 USS Bunker Hill (CV-17) is hit by two kamikaze off Okinawa that release bombs and crash dive. Aboard, the crew suffered a total of 346 killed, 43 missing and 264 wounded plus 78 aircraft destroyed. This as one of the most deadly Japanese Kamikaze attacks of WW 2. Two A6M ‘Zero’ aircraft hit the carrier, penetrating the deck, causing a massive fire in the decks below. [1,37]

 


Australians launch offensive on Wewak, the last Japanese stronghold on New Guinea, taking Wewak, its airfield, and the last Japanese port in New Guinea [1]


US Tenth Army and Marines launch offensive on Shuri Line of Okinawa [1]

  May 12 Consolidated B-32 Dominators depart the factory at Fort Worth, Texas bound for the Pacific to fly combat missions. This was the less sophisticated competing heavy bomber design to the Boeing B-29 Superfortress. [37]

 


British troops return to Jersey in the Channel Islands [1]


Gen. George Patton launches Operation Cowboy, rescuing 1200 horses, including 375 Lipizzans, from Soviet slaughter in Czechoslovakia [1]

Lost in Shangri-La C-47A “Gremlin Special” 42-23952 crashed in western New Guinea on a sight seeking trip with nurses. A downdraft caused the crash results in 19 killed, 2 injured that die and 3 survivors. [37]

 


US Fast Carrier Task Force (TF 58) begins raids on Kyushu, Japan, destroying the last of its airfields. [1]

May 13 Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel (“just following orders”) and his aide were sent to ASHCAN detention camp as prisoners #2 and #3. Nuremberg prison psychologist Dr. Gilbert said Keitel “had just as much spine as a jelly fish.” [45]

 


Russians crush last German resistance in Czechoslovakia. [1,11]

472 B-29 Superfortress fire bomb Nagoya, the first strategic bombing raid with all four Bomb Wings on Guam and Saipan participating. Eleven B-29s fail to return with crews MIA, POW and a lucky few rescued. [37] May 14 Wilhelm Frick was delivered to ASHCAN detention camp as prisoner #6. Robert Kempner, an American prosecutor at #Nuremberg and former German whom Frick threw into a concentration camp, called him “the evil managerial genius of the conspiracy.” [45]

 


US Seventh War Loan starts. [1]

Turning point in China—Chinese troops have Japanese forces in full retreat; by the end of the month, the Japanese will be pushed north of the Yellow River [1] May 15  
U. S. Army Brigadier General James L. Dalton, Assistant Commander 25th Infantry Division was killed on by a sniper at Balete Pass in Luzon in the Philippines. [37] May 16 German Labour Front leader and “Reich drunkard” Robert Ley was captured near the Austrian border, then delivered to ASHCAN May 23 as prisoner #28. In Nuremberg, Ley hanged himself one week before trial started, using his own torn underwear. [45]
On Luzon in the Philippines, US Sixth Army takes Ipo Dam intact [1] May 17  
US Marines secure Sugar Loaf Hill on Okinawa after heavy fighting [1] May 18 An RAF Lancaster is the first plane in history to fly over both true and magnetic North Poles [1]
272 B-29 Superfortress bombers strike Hamamatsu, Japan [2] May 19 Allies discontinue trans-Atlantic and Mediterranean convoys [1]

 


Stalin denies that his troops have been arresting Polish leaders for political reasons [2]


Alfred Rosenberg is captured at Flensburg, Germany [2]

  May 20 Hermann Göring is delivered to ASHCAN as prisoner #13. Doctors shipped samples of his 20,000 paracodeine pills to a lab for analysis, weaned him from a years-long addition, and put “fat stuff” on a diet. The goal: keep him alive and healthy until judgement day.  [45]
U. S. Army medic Pfc Desmond T. Doss repeatedly risks his life to render aid to wounded on Okinawa and was himself hit four times. For his actions at Shuri and Hacksaw Ridge he earned the Medal of Honor. [37] May 21 Franz Von Papen is delivered to ASHCAN PW camp in Luxembourg as prisoner #18. After his capture April 14, von Papen is forced to visit a concentration camp and witness first-hand the nature of Hitler’s regime he had done so much to enable. [45]
Australian Army troops supported by tanks capture Boram Airfield on the north coast of New Guinea. After two years of Allied bombing the airfield area is pockmarked with bomb craters and wreckage. [37] May 22 Due to continuing shortages, Britain cuts rations of fats, bacon, meat, and soap [1]
  May 23  
  May 24  
  May 25  
Royal Australian Navy (RAN) HMAS Colac is damaged by two shells fired by Japanese guns on bypassed Choiseul in the Solomon Islands that kill two and wounded two aboard and began to take on water but survives.  [37]

 


Chinese nationalists capture Nanning, cutting off Japanese forces in Indochina [1]

May 26 At least 16 of the 24 future IMT defendants are in Allied custody—the majority in ASHCAN, a few at DUSTBIN and other PW camps. Three more will be caught this week.  [45]
Due to mines, Tokyo harbor is closed for the duration of the war [1]

 


US Sixth Army takes Santa Fe, Luzon, securing the Villa Verde Trail [1]


US Marines take Naha, the capital of Okinawa [1]

May 27  
  May 28 Nuremberg defendants Alfred Rosenberg and Walther Funk are delivered to ASHCAN PW camp in Luxembourg as major war criminals #42 and #44. The “Big House” was filling up so two more stockades were requisitioned nearby. [45]

 


British capture traitor William Joyce (broadcaster “Lord Haw Haw”) in Flensburg, Germany, to be hanged in 1946, the last person to be executed by Britain for treason [1]

The US 10th Army capture Shuri ridge and Shuri Castle at Okinawa, Japan [1,2]

 


Filipino guerrillas take Cervantes, Luzon [1]

May 29 In Syria, fighting erupts between French troops and Syrian nationalists; French bomb Damascus, destroying Syrian parliament building [1]
PBJ Mitchells bomb enemy installations at the Kibawe Trail near Davao on Mindanao, two are lost including PBJ Mitchell 35243 pilot Fish and PBJ Mitchell 35164 pilot Lt Col Sarles. {37] May 30 Iran demands the removal of all American, British, and Soviet troops [1]
Americans take Naha and Shuri Castle on Okinawa [1,11] May 31 British negotiate a ceasefire in Syria between Syrian nationalists and the French [1]
British 12th and 14th Armies link in Burma [1] June 1 British force Cossacks (White Russians who oppose communism and fought for Germany) to Soviet zone in Austria; 700 Cossacks killed or commit suicide; many of the 32,000 sent back will disappear [1]
US Naval Task Force 38 attacks kamikaze bases in southern Japan, forcing operations further north in Japan [1] June 2  
US Marines land on Iheya Shima in the Ryukyu Islands northwest of Okinawa [1] June 3 Julius Streicher is delivered to ASHCAN PW camp in Luxembourg. Publisher of the virulently antisemitic newspaper Der Stürmer, Streicher used modern techniques of mass media and marketing to persuade German people to hate Jews [45]

 


French troops leave Damascus, escorted by the British [1]

US Marines land behind Japanese lines on Oroku Peninsula on Okinawa [1] June 4 The US Office of Civilian Defense is inactivated [1]
Huge typhoon hits the US Third Fleet off Okinawa, damaging 35 ships [1] June 5 Allied Control Council agrees on the partition of Germany and Berlin into 4 occupation zones (UK, US, USSR, France) [1]
  June 6  
US Marines cut off Oroku Peninsula on Okinawa [1] June 7 King Haakon VII of Norway returns to Oslo. [1]
An Australian Army force of 190 lands at Porton in Bougainville but drifted to unload at the wrong location and are immediately targeted by machine-gun fire with several landing craft ran aground. [37]

 


US & Australian Naval Task Group 74.3 bombards Brunei Bay on Borneo [1]

June 8 Jozef Tiso, former president of Slovak Republic, is arrested by US forces; he will be extradited to Czechoslovakia and executed in 1947 for collaborating with Germans and for war crimes [1]
Australian landing craft reach Porton under the cover of artillery and bombing to withdraw the surviving force. Porton was one of the few amphibious landings repulsed by Japanese defenders [37] June 9  
Australian landing on Borneo in Brunei bay area an important port, and capture Labuan airfield [1,11] June 10  
  June 11 Gen. George Patton deposited the original, signed Nuremberg Laws he stole and returned home with, at The Huntington in California, where they would remain hidden the next 54 years—unavailable to prosecution teams at Nuremberg [45]

 


Czechoslovakia begins expulsion of 3 million ethnic Germans [1]

US B-32 Dominator bomber is first flown in combat, in the Philippines [1]

 


US Marines make a push for the final pocket of Japanese forces on the Oroku Peninsula on Okinawa [1]

June 12  
Japanese resistance ends in the Oroku sector of Okinawa; Japanese commander Adm. Minoru Ota commits suicide [1]

 


US Sixth Army drives into the Cagayan Valley on Luzon in the Philippines [1]


Australians take Brunei on Borneo [1]

June 13  
On Okinawa, the US Tenth Army takes Yaeju-Dake peak and US Marines take Kunishi Ridge. [1] June 14 British arrest Nazi foreign minister Joachim von Ribbentrop in Hamburg, Germany; he will be executed after the Nuremberg Trials [1]
US B-29 incendiary raid on Osaka ends the incendiary campaign on the six biggest Japanese cities [1] June 15  
The US Tenth Army takes Yuza-Dake Hill on Okinawa [1] June 16  
The US begins B-29 incendiary raids on medium-sized Japanese cities; missions carried out using radar-bombing [1] June 17  
American bombers begin a campaign against secondary Japanese cities [11]

 


In the Philippines, the US Eighth Army secures Mindanao [1]


.On Okinawa, Gen. Simon B. Buckner, commander of the US Tenth Army, is killed by shrapnel. Marine Maj. Gen. Roy Geiger, replaces Buckner over US Tenth Army, the first Marine and first (and only) aviator to head a US army [1]

June 18  
 
Americans announce conquest of Okinawa; take Aparri on Luzon. [11]

 


US Tenth Army takes Hill 89 on Okinawa, the last Japanese stronghold [1]


US Rangers link with Filipino guerrillas in Aparri, Luzon in the Philippines [1]

June 21  
During the Okinawa campaign, the US Navy took its heaviest losses of the war with 36 vessels sunk and 4907 killed. In addition, the US lost 763 planes and the Japanese lost 7800 [1]

 


The Battle for Okinawa officially ends at a high cost—12,520 Americans killed, 110,000 Japanese killed [1]

June 22  
Airborne Assault! The U. S. Army 11th Airborne Division, 511th Parachute Infantry Regiment jumps near Aparri on north Luzon. This is the only time gliders are used in combat in the Pacific Theater. [37] June 23  
British bombers destroy the “Bridge Over the River Kwai.” The bridge had been built by thousands of British and Allied prisoners of war. [7] June 24  
  June 25  
The United Nations Charter is signed by fifty nations in San Francisco. [1] June 26 Former Czechoslovakian president Emil Hácha, who allowed German occupation under duress and was imprisoned in May 1945 for suspected collaboration, dies in prison [1]
The US Sixth Army secures Cagayan Valley on Luzon and drives toward Aparri on the north shore [1] June 27  
End of major operations on Luzon [11]

 


The Waco CG-4A glider “Fanless Faggot” rescues the three survivors of the tragic crash of C-47A 42-23952 from the remote Hidden Valley dubbed “Shangri-La” in western New Guinea [37]

June 28  
  June 29  
  June 30  
“Operation Oboe Two” U. S. Navy Task Group 78.4 with USAAF air cover conduct the amphibious landing of the Australian Army 7th Division north of Balikpapan on southeast Borneo. [37] July 1  
Submarine USS Barb attacks Kaihyo Island (north of Japan off Sakhalin) with the first use of rockets by a US sub against shore installations [1] July 2  
  July 3  
  July 4  
Gen. Douglas MacArthur releases a communique announcing that major combat operations in the Philippine Islands had concluded [11,15] July 5  
  July 6 Nicaragua becomes the first nation to ratify the United Nations Charter [1]

 


US President Harry Truman establishes the Medal of Freedom, the highest honor for US civilians [1]


The US launches Operation Overcast to bring German scientists to America [1]

  July 7  
  July 8  
  July 9  
US Navy Task Force 38 begins raids on Japan coordinated with B-29s; 1000 aircraft strike airfields near Tokyo. [1] July 10  
  July 1  
  July 11  
Fifty-three B-29 Superfortress bomb Kawasaki Petroleum Center destroying about 25% of the target area [37] July 12  
  July 13  
US Third Fleet warships fire directly on Japan for the first time. The first shot is fired by battleship USS South Dakota.  This is the first naval shelling of Japanese coast with a bombardment of Kamaishi [1,11]

 


US Task Force 38 carrier aircraft fly 1381 sorties to Hokkaido and northern Honshu in Japan, sinking 34 ships, including 7 train ferries, severing transportation between the two islands [1]

July 14 French celebrate first Bastille Day since 1939 [1]
P-51D Mustangs from Iwo Jima attack airfields and other tactical targets including Gifu Airfield at Kagamigahara claiming aircraft in the air and on the ground [37] July 15  
At 5:30am the first atomic device “gadget” is successfully detonated at Trinity Site on White Sands Proving Ground near Alamogordo, New Mexico [15,37] July 16  
First joint US-British strike on Japan as British Task Force 37 and US Task Force 38 hit the Tokyo area, also the first British attack on Japan. [1,11] July 17 Potsdam conference begins outside Berlin—Winston Churchill, Josef Stalin, and Harry Truman meet to discuss postwar Europe and the end of the war with Japan [1]
US Third Fleet carrier aircraft sink Japan’s last big battleship, the Nagato, at Yokosuka naval base near Tokyo [1] July 18 At Bedford Naval Magazine in Nova Scotia, explosions occur for 24 hours, but only one person is killed [1]
  July 19 Lt. Gen. James Doolittle establishes the US Eighth Air Force on Okinawa, having transferred from England [1]

 


P-51D Mustangs from Iwo Jima perform a fighter sweep over airfields and other tactical targets on Honshu including Komaki Airfield north of Nagoya [37]

The US Eighth Army lands on and takes Balut Island at the entrance to Sarangani Bay, Mindanao in the Philippines, the last US combat amphibious operation of the war. [1] July 20 US Congress ratifies Bretton Woods Monetary Agreement [1]
  July 21  
  July 22  
  July 23  
  July 24  
The US secures Sarangani Bay on Mindanao in the Philippines [1] July 25 At ASHCAN Andrus reports the opening of “La Guardia” airstrip and Goering’s dose of paracodeine pills has been reduced to 15 per day (from 40 when he surrendered). No apparent reaction except “his apparent disgust when he noticed that he was being short-changed.” [45]
This calls for the unconditional surrender of Japan

 


The HMS Sussex Task Force is attacked by two attack bombers acting as kamikaze suicide weapons. One made an imprint on the side of Sussex, from which it could be identified as a Mitsubishi Ki-51 “Sonia”. [8]

July 26 The Potsdam Declaration is issued by Allied leaders
The Chinese take Kweilin in southeast China [1,11]

 


U. S. Navy (USN) Task Force 38 (TF-38) carrier aircraft attack Kure and heavily damage Amagi leaving the aircraft carrier listing and the flight deck wrecked from multiple bomb hits and near misses [37]

July 27  
Air attack on remnants of the Japanese fleet in Inland Sea [11]

 


Japanese “choose to ignore the” Allied Potsdam Declaration requiring unconditional surrender. [1]


The destroyer USS Callaghan becomes the last Allied ship to be sunk by a kamikaze [1]

July 28 The US Senate ratifies the United Nations Charter [1]

 


A B-25 Mitchell medium bomber crashes into the Empire State Building at the 79th floor in the fog; 19 are killed [1]

Kure Harbor “The Imperial Navy’s Harbor” is attacked for the second day by U. S. Navy carrier planes plus U. S. Army Air Force bombers and fighters that wreck Japan’s last warships and carriers at anchor. [37]

 


The final time a British battleship fires in combat, as HMS King George V bombards Hamamatsu, Honshu, along with other British and US ships [1]

July 29  
The USS Indianapolis (CA-35) is sunk by torpedoes fired by Japanese submarine I-58 in the North Philippine Sea. Approximately 300 were lost in the sinking with the rest of the crew drifting at sea. [37] July 30  
USS Bullhead SS-332 departs Fremantle on her 3rd war patrol and will never return. Bullhead has the sad distinction of being the last U. S. Navy submarine lost to enemy action in World War II with all hands. [37] July 31 The former head of the Vichy French government, Pierre Laval, is arrested by the Americans and turned over to the French; he will be executed October 15 for collaborating with the Nazis [1]
On Tinian, the B-29s assigned to the 509th Composite Group top-secret atomic bomb missions are assigned new victor numbers as a security measure. B-29 “Bockscar” 44-27297 becomes victor number 77. [37]

 


Biggest air raid ever over Japan—836 US B-29 Superfortresses are dispatched at night [1]

August 1 In the US, penicillin is made available by prescription to civilians as tablets, ointment, and eye drops. [1]
  August 2  
  August 3 Czechoslovakia denies citizenship to ethnic Germans and Hungarians [1]
Near Pegu Yoma, the British destroy remnants of the Japanese 28th Army resisting in Burma [1] August 4 German POW Kurt Rossmeisl escapes from Camp Butner, NC; he surrenders in 1959. [1]
Colonel Paul W. Tibbets, Jr. assumes command of B-29 Superfortress 44-86292 and nicknames the bomber “Enola Gay” after his mother at North Field on Tinian. [37] August 5 Missing items from Holy Roman Empire Imperial regalia are found buried in Nürnberg, Germany [1]
The first Atomic bomb used in warfare is dropped on Hiroshima by US B-29 Superfortress Enola Gay, flown by Col. Paul Tibbets Jr.; about 78,000 killed. This is done to urge the Japanese to surrender and end WWII [1,11,45]

 


Off Bali, Japanese aircraft sink the sub USS Bullhead, the last US warship lost in the war [1]

August 6 Maj. Richard Bong, leading US fighter pilot ace (40 victories) and a Medal of Honor recipient, is killed testing a Lockheed P-80 Shooting Star jet fighter in Burbank, CA [1]
The Japanese first fly the Nakajima J9Y Kikka jet fighter, essentially a copy of the German Messerschmitt Me 262. [1] August 7 Marshal Tito bans the return of King Peter to Yugoslavia [1]
Russia declares war on Japan, effective midnight. At 11pm Soviet foreign minister Molotov tells the Japanese ambassador hostilities against Japan will commence in an hour as Soviet forces await the signal to commence “Operation August Storm” in the Far East. [1,11,37]

 


President Truman threatens further atomic destruction if Japan doesn’t surrender [1]


A US Marine Corps F6F Hellcat downs a Japanese fighter near Okinawa, the last of 2439 victories by USMC pilots in WWII. [1]

August 8 The London Agreement and Charter was signed by the USA, UK, France, and USSR establishing  the International Military Tribunal to prosecute major Axis war criminals at Nuremberg [45]
The U.S. drops a second atom bomb known as the “Fat Man” on Japan. It is dropped from  The Bockscar, a B-29 bomber of the USAAF. The 21-kiloton weapon explodes over Nagasaki at 11:02 am local time. Over 35,000 people are killed outright, with total deaths estimated at 60,000 to 80,000 due to radiation poisoning and long-term health effects. [4,26,37,57]

 


Lt Robert Hampton-Gray, VC, DSC, RCNVR, flying from HMS FORMIDABLE attacks & sinks a Japanese destroyer in Onagawa Bay. Grey’s aircraft crashed during the attack. He is posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross for his actions. [61]

August 9  
Emperor Hirohito tells the Japanese government to accept the Potsdam Declaration demanding unconditional surrender; the Japanese declare they will surrender if they can retain Hirohito as emperor. [1,11]

 


Mosquito a/c from 684 Sqn carried out 2 PR sorties over Malaysia and Singapore. A 3rd sortie over the Andaman Islands was aborted due to icing affecting the engines. [65]

August 10  
Dai Viet (Nationalist Party of Greater Vietnam) holds a demonstration in Hanoi, French Indochina in support of the Vietnamese royal government and an independent Vietnam [1]

 


Gen. Douglas MacArthur is declared Allied Supreme Commander, with the authority to accept a Japanese surrender. [1]

August 11  
The US announces Japan can keep Hirohito as emperor, but only if he is not proclaimed to be divine [1] August 12 15 of Hitler’s top leaders are transferred from ASHCAN to Nuremberg. En route, Göring points out the Rhine River, telling Ribbentrop to take one last look as he is unlikely to ever get the opportunity again. Streicher is airsick. Last progress report from ASHCAN on the reduction of Hermann Göring’s paracodeine tablets. Over 82 days he was completely weaned from addiction. Phenobarbitol was given as a sleep aid. Göring’s final ASHCAN progress report: from 40 tablets a day to zero, down 264 lbs to 238 (120kg to 108 kg). [45]
Lost is OA-10 Catalina 44-34080 pilot 1st Lt. Edmund L. Eliason on a “Dumbo” rescue over Tokyo Bay when shot down by A6M5 Zeros with only Sgt Roger E. Regain surviving the crash and became a prisoner. [37]

 


A US OA-10A aircraft rescues a downed air crew from inner Tokyo Bay, the first time a US plane has accomplished a rescue in those waters [1]


Lt. Oscar Perdomo of US 507th Fighter Group becomes the last ace of the war when he shoots down 5 Japanese fighters over Kyushu. [1]

August 13  
With Tokyo just hours away from announcing its unconditional surrender, the U.S. mounts a thousand-plane raid on Japan. [4]

 


In the last US Army Air Force fighter engagement of WWII, P-38s down 5 Japanese Ki-84s off Honshu; USAAF pilots have downed 5214 Japanese aircraft since Pearl Harbor [1]


The USS Spikefish (SS 404) sinks the Japanese submarine I-373 in the Sea of Japan. The next day, her crew was directed to cease all attacks following the surrender of Japan. [68]


Japan surrenders unconditionally to the Allied Powers, ending the Second World War. Hirohito signs the acceptance of unconditional surrender. The Japanese accept the terms of the Potsdam Declaration and agree to surrender, sparking celebrations across the United States and beyond. [1,41,61,68,70,74,75]


Japanese military coup and assassination attempt on Emperor Hirohito fails [1]


Emperor Bao Dai of Indochina tears up treaties with French from 1862 and 1874 and proclaims Vietnamese sovereignty [1]

August 14 The US government orders the resumption of civilian car manufacturing [1]
US Navy Task Force 38 aircraft strike Tokyo airfields before the surrender is announced—US Navy pilots have downed 6800 Japanese aircraft since Pearl Harbor. [1] August 15  
The Japanese parliament resigns [1] August 16  President Truman proclaims to the world that they were witnessing a “new beginning in the history of freedom on this Earth” [26]

 


Churchill first uses the term “iron curtain” in a speech to the House of Commons: “the iron curtain which at the moment divides Europe in twain.” [1]

Ho Chi Minh calls on Vietnamese people to begin the communist revolution. [1]

 


The Allies divide Korea on the 38th parallel, with the US in the south, USSR in the north [1]


The Dutch East Indies proclaims independence from the Netherlands, calling itself the Republic of Indonesia. [1]

August 17  
The Red Army lands on Shumshu and engages the Japanese garrison. Even though artillery was late to the landing, Ha-Go tanks were successfully defeated with anti-tank rifles alone. [22]

 


In the last air conflict of war, US B-32 recon planes are attacked by flak & fighters over Tokyo; photographer Sgt. Anthony Marchione becomes the last American killed in the war [1]


The US begins parachuting medical teams into Japanese POW camps. [1]


On the USS Levy negotiations take place at Mili Atoll, Marshall Islands for the Japanese surrender of local forces [77]

August 18  

Chiang Kai-shek forbids Japanese to surrender to Communist Chinese; they must surrender to the Nationalists [1]


US troops enter Shanghai to prevent a communist takeover [1]


Japanese soldiers are told that surrendering under cease-fire doesn’t break the Bushido code [1]

August 19  

The last bomb dropped by the RAF on an operational sortie in WW2 is dropped by a de Havilland Mosquito FB 6 of No. 110 Squadron in support of Force 136 (SOE) in Burma. [60]

August 20

Norwegian Nazi collaborator Vidkun Quisling is placed on trial for treason in Oslo; he will be executed [1]


US War Production Board lifts production controls on 210 consumer items [1]

Last naval surface action of war: Japanese junk attacks 2 Chinese junks with US & Chinese crews; 45 Japanese & 4 Chinese are killed [1]

August 21

President Truman ends Lend-Lease program with Britain [1]

The Japanese garrison at Mili Island in the Marshall Islands becomes the first Pacific island to surrender aboard destroyer escort USS Levy, the first voluntary Japanese handover of an island., eleven days before the formal surrender of Japan. [1,37]


In Manchuria, the Japanese surrender to Soviets, and the Soviets seize Port Arthur. [1]

August 22

Yugoslavia orders all farmland over 75 acres to be confiscated and given to partisan fighters [1]

  August 23  

Australian Volunteer Defence Corps (home defense) is disbanded [1]

August 24

British Prime Minister Clement Attlee complains about end of US Lend-Lease program [1]

U. S. Navy salvage divers from the USS Chanticleer (ASR-7) located the shipwreck of Akitsushima in Coron Bay, Philippines. This seaplane tender was sunk on September 24, 1944 by U. S. Navy planes. [37]


In China US Capt. John Birch is killed in a skirmish with communists, the “first casualty of Third World War.” [1]


In French Indochina, the Viet Minh takes control of Saigon, and Emperor Bao Dai abdicates, ending the Nguyen Dynasty [1]

August 25  

Soviets land on and take Matsuwa in the Kurile Islands; will take 63,000 Japanese POWs in Kuriles [1]

August 26  

B-29s drop supplies to Weihsien Internment Camp (Weihsien Camp) in China. This is the first of 900 sorties to drop 4,000+ tons of supplies to former POW Camps and internment camps. [37]


In Japan, almost 400 vessels of the US Third Fleet anchor in Sagami Bay. [1]

August 27  

Soviet troops invade Iturup, Kurile Islands [2]

August 28  

First Allied POWs in Japan are liberated, from Camp Omori, by US Navy forces. [1]


Major Gregory “Pappy” Boyington is among those liberated from Omori POW. The Marine ace from VMF-214 “Black Sheep” was a Prisoner Of War since January 3, 1944. [37]

August 29

24 Nazi leaders are indicted as war criminals [1]


US ends military draft [1]

Following the surrender of Japan, Japanese forces occupying Hong Kong hand over control of the territory to the British. Every year after the 30 August was marked in Hong Kong as ‘Liberation Day’ and declared a public holiday until 1997 [57]

August 30  

Marcus Island (Minamitorishima) is officially surrendered by Rear Admiral M. Matsubara aboard USS Bagley DD-386 to Rear Admiral F. E. M. Whiting. [37]

August 31

German Field Marshals Walter von Brauchitsch and Erich von Manstein are arrested in Germany [1]


The US Twelfth Air Force is inactivated in Italy [1]


The US Office of War Information is disbanded. [1]

  September 1  

The official surrender of Japan is signed on the deck of the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay. Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz signs the Instrument of Surrender as U.S. Representative. With him are Douglas MacArthur; William F. Halsey, and Forrest Sherman. Col Lawrence Cosgrave, Canada’s representative signs on the wrong line. The Japanese representatives protest but hand written changes fix the mistake. [1,15,25,31,37,54,70,74,84,91]


Ho Chi Minh declares Democratic Republic of Vietnam in Hanoi [1]


A US C-54 Skymaster transport plane makes a record 31 hr, 25 min flight from Tokyo to Washington, DC with film from the surrender ceremony. [1]

September 2  

Lost is RAAF Beaufort A9-622 that took off from Tadji Airfield pilot W/O Cedric Ernest Hall on a mission to drop surrender leaflets over Japanese positions and crashed killing the entire crew. [37]

September 3  

Japanese forces in Singapore and Malaya surrender to the British [1]


A detachment from U. S. Army, 1st Cavalry Division takes control of Yokota Airfield (Tama, Fussa) without incident and becomes a major U. S. occupation base for arriving troops and supplies. [37]

September 4

German weather station Haudegen at Spitsbergen, Norway surrenders to a Norwegian seal hunter, the final German unit to surrender.  [1]

Aboard Royal Navy heavy cruiser HMS Sussex anchored in Singapore Harbor, Imperial Japanese Army (IJA) 7th Area Army commander General Seishirō Itagaki surrenders all forces under his control. [37]

September 5  

Japanese General Hitoshi Mamura and Vice Admiral Jinichi Kusakai officially surrender aboard HMS Glory off Rabaul. The pair surrenders all remaining forces on New Britain and the Solomons, 139,000 men in the Bismarcks, Solomons, and New Guinea [1, 37]

September 6  

Eighteen British Prisoners Of War (POWs) on Watom Island are liberated, the only survivors from a group of 600 Royal Artillery gunners surrendered at Singapore and perished at Rabaul and Ballale. [37]


Japanese surrender ceremony at the headquarters of US 10th Army, Okinawa, Japan [70]

September 7

International Parade in Berlin. Those taking the salute included Marshal Zhukov and General Patton. [1, 99]

Dr Marcel Junod of the International Red Cross brings 15 tons of medicines to Hiroshima to help with the terrible after-effects of the A-bomb. The city has never forgotten him. [85]


The US 1st Cavalry Division enters Tokyo, and Gen. Douglas MacArthur raises the US flag over the US embassy [1]


US forces land at Inchon, Korea to prevent Soviets from breaking agreement to occupy only North Korea. [1]

September 8  

One million Japanese forces in China surrender at Nanjing at 9:00, the ninth hour of the ninth day of the ninth month [1]

September 9

Canada reintroduces meat rationing to allow exports to Europe [1]

Midway-class carrier USS Midway is commissioned at Newport News, VA, currently a museum ship in San Diego, CA [1]


Operation Magic Carpet begins. Immense effort to bring troops home at the end of WWII. Bremerton’s PSNS and IMF installed 1000s of bunks in warships. [107]

September 10

Norwegian Nazi collaborator Vidkun Quisling is sentenced to death for treason; he will be executed on October 24 [1]

  September 11  

British Military Administration in Malaya is established under Lord Louis Mountbatten, as an interim government before the formation of the Malayan Union in April 1946. [1]


British officially re-establish rule in Singapore [1]

September 12  
  September 13  
  September 14  
  September 15  

Surrender negotiations conclude between the Australian Army 2 Corps and Japanese forces in northern Bougainville. The Allies are surprised by the large garrison on Bougainville [37]


Japanese forces in Hong Kong officially surrender to the British [1]

September 16  
  September 17 In Italy, the US Fifth Army breaks the German Gothic Line at Il Giogo Pass [1]

Four Japanese aircraft painted in surrender markings flown by Japanese pilots departed Vunakanau Airfield near Rabaul to Jacquinot Bay to surrender to the Royal New Zealand Air Force. [37]


Operation Swift Mercy was underway by @usairforce with B-17s & B-29s dropping 4,500 tons of supplies to American troops no longer prisoner, but still trapped. [15]

September 18

A British military court begins hearing evidence in The Bergen Belsen Trial. Irma Greese (21 years old) and Commandant Josef Kramer were among 45 men and women accused of heinous, mass atrocity crimes. The trial lasted 54 days [45]


Henry L. Stimson resigns as US Secretary of War [1]

 Imperial Japanese Army (IJA) General Ito commander Japanese forces on New Ireland surrenders to Australian Army Major General K. W. Eather, commander 11th Division aboard HMAS Swan (U74) [37]


British and French troops suppress Vietnamese nationalist insurgents in Saigon [1]


Congress Party of India begins negotiations with British about independence [1]

September 19  

British and US Seventh Fleet warships anchor at Shanghai, China [1]

September 20

Wernher von Braun arrives in the United States, and is escorted by Army Intelligence to Fort Strong, a secluded former Civil War facility on one of the Boston Harbor islands. 


German rocket engineers begin work in US rocket program [1]


In Nuremberg Herman Goering is cured of his morphine habit as he awaits trial [45]

  September 21  
  September 22  

An Australian Army force led by Brigadier L. G. H. Dyke  arrives at Dili and restores Portuguese colonial rule. During WWII, roughly 45,000 East Timorese died most for helping Australians on Timor [37]


US Marines land at Nagasaki, Japan [1]

September 23

Egypt demands modification of Anglo-Egyptian Treaty of 1936 to end British military presence in Egypt and to annex Anglo-Egyptian Sudan (not complete until 1954-56) [1]

  September 24  

In the Philippines, Pres. Sergio Osmeña establishes a People’s Court to try collaborators [1]

September 25

The Nazi party is declared illegal in Germany [1]


Last Soviet forces depart from Norway [1]

First US casualty in Vietnam (French Indochina)—OSS (precursor to CIA) officer Lt. Col. Peter Dewey is killed by Viet Minh in Saigon, mistaken for a Frenchman [1]

September 26  

 Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers (SCAP) General Douglas MacArthur meets Emperor Hirohito for the first time in Tokyo. Afterwards, MacArthur orders all Japanese newspapers to print the photo [37]


US Air Transport Command begins “Sunset Project”: return of planes, crews & passengers from the Pacific [1]

September 27  

Indonesians riot against the Dutch [1]

September 28

US Office of Censorship is disbanded [1]

  September 30  
  October 1

The US Army Air Forces in the Mediterranean Theater of Operations (AAF/MTO) is inactivated [1]


US Office of Strategic Service (precursor to CIA) is disbanded [1]

  October 2

US Fifth Army in Italy is inactivated [1]

Imperial Japanese Army Lt. General Kunitaro Yamada, Commanding Officer of the 48th Division surrenders Japanese forces in the Lesser Sundas to Australian Army Brigadier L. G. H. Dyke, CBE DSO at a ceremony at Koepang in West Timor. [37, 77]


In the Philippines, the first case is filed to try leaders who collaborated with the Japanese [1]

October 3  

USS Yorktown (CV-10) embarks U. S. personnel from Okinawa then departs on a non-stop voyage across the Pacific bound for San Francisco as part of Operation Magic Carpet bring American servicemen home [37]

October 4  
  October 5  
  October 6  
  October 7

George Patton handed control of the US 3rd Army to Lucian Truscott [2]

  October 8

Former Nazi leader Rudolf Hess (who stole plane May 10, 1941 and flew to Scotland in unauthorized attempt to encourage British to seek peace) is flown from England for the Nuremberg Trials [1]

  October 9  
  October 10

Soviet code clerk defects to US and reveals extent of Soviet spy ring in US [1]

  October 11  
  October 12

The first fully navalised Hawker Sea Fury prototype flies. This was powered by the Bristol Centaurus XV engine [9]

  October 13

The last of 11,461 Wellington aircraft to be built rolled off the production line [2]

Indonesian People’s Army declares war on the Netherlands [1]

October 14  
  October 15

Former Vichy French Prime Minister Pierre Laval is executed by the French for collaborating with the Nazis [1]

  October 17

 Indictments are issued to Hitler’s henchmen in Nuremberg prison. [45]

  October 18  

British land at Semarang, Java to crush an uprising [1]


War Widow’s Guild of Australia is founded [1]

October 19

Evangelical Church in Germany issues Stuttgart Declaration of Guilt under leadership of Martin Niemöller (Confessing Church), stating that although they’d opposed Nazism, they hadn’t done enough [1]

  October 20  
  October 21

Parliamentary elections are held in France, and communists & socialists win a majority; members of the Constituent Assembly are selected to draft a constitution for the Fourth Republic [1]


British engineers blow up U-boat pens in Hamburg, Germany [1]

  October 22  
  October 23  
The United Nations is formed wit 23 member nations [1] October 24

Norwegian Nazi collaborator Vidkun Quisling is executed [1]

  October 25  
  October 26  
  October 27  
  October 28  
The trial against Japanese General Yamashita begins in Manila October 29  

The final Liberty Ship is delivered, the Albert M. Boe; 2711 Liberty Ships were produced during the war.  [1

October 30

US ends shoe rationing, effective at midnight. [1]

Day three of Japanese Army General Tomoyuki Yamashita war crimes trial in Manila. On December 7, 1945 he was found guilty and appealed to the U. S. Supreme Court that upheld his conviction. [37]


Relocation center for Japanese-Americans at Topaz, UT closes [1]

October 31  
  November 1  
  November 2  

Light carrier Hosho returns 1,011 servicemen back to Japan [2]

November 3

US War Production Board and Office of Production Management are inactivated [1]

  November 4  
  November 5

Hermann Goering selects a defense counsel for the International Military Tribunal, to begin in 15 days [45]


Muslims begin a pogrom against Jews in Libya (under British Military Administration); in three days, 140 Jews will be killed and synagogues & homes will be looted and destroyed [1]

  November 6  
  November 7

Bell Aircraft Corporation conducts the first remote-control flight of a P-59 Airacomet jet using a TV in the cockpit [1]

  November 8  
  November 9  
  November 10  
  November 11

War Department board recommends having more Black officers & units and equal treatment, but doesn’t call for full desegregation (won’t happen until 1948). [1]

  November 12  
  November 13

France holds free elections, and Gen. Charles de Gaulle is elected head of government. [1]

  November 14  
  November 15  
  November 16  
  November 17  
  November 18  
  November 19

Congress votes to withdraw US Marines from China [1]

  November 20

 The Nuremberg Trials begin. 21 top-level Nazis are tried for crimes against humanity & war crimes. The Library holds a large collection of documents & translations from the trials which specifically pertain to the fate of European Jewry. More than 200 Nazis accused of war crimes during World War II were put on trial.  [49, 116]

  November 21 All accused German war criminals at Nuremberg plead not guilty [2]
  November 22

Thanksgiving is celebrated in America; Macy’s parade resumes after being cancelled from 1942-44. [1]

  November 23

US ends rationing of meat and butter. [1]

US Secretary of War Robert Patterson orders all Japanese cyclotrons to be destroyed [2] November 24  
  November 25 The beginning of Operation Deadlight – the RAF begins to scuttle Nazi U-Boats
  November 26  
  November 27  
  November 28  
  November 29  
  November 30  
The Japanese create the Ministry of Demobilization December 1  
  December 3  
  December 4  
  December 5  
  December 6  
Tomoyuki Yamashita was found guilty of war crimes December 7  
  December 8  
  December 9

Gen. George S. Patton is injured in a car accident near Neckarstadt, Germany [1]

  December 10  
  December 11  
  December 12  
  December 13

Thomas J. Dodd presents the first major evidence of Nazi concentration camp atrocities – tattooed human skin and a shrunken head from Buchanwald, and death books from Mauthausen [45]

  December 14  
  December 15  

Former Japanese Prime Minister Fumimaro Konoe commits suicide as US sweeps Japan for war criminals. [1]

December 16  
  December 17  
  December 18  
  December 19  
  December 20  
  December 21

Just months after the end of World War II, U.S. General George S. Patton dies at the age of 60 of injuries from a car accident in Heidelberg [116]

  December 22  
  December 23  
  December 24  
  December 25  
  December 26  

US, UK, China, and USSR agree to govern Korea jointly for five years before granting independence [1]

December 27  
  December 28

Congress officially recognizes the Pledge of Allegiance [1]

  December 29

SS general Kurt Meyer is found guilty of war crimes by a Canadian military court. Many Canadian POWs were murdered under Meyer’s command in Normandy. Sentenced to death, Meyer’s punishment was commuted to life in prison. He was released after 9 years [31]

  December 30  
  December 31  
1946
  January 14 Eighteen nations sign the Agreement on Reparation from Germany as a result of the Nazis starting and losing World War II. The agreement took effect ten days later [116]
  February 4 German Alfried Krupp is released from imprisonment and his fortune is restored [2]
  February 11 The last of the 116 captured German U-boats scheduled to be sunk are scuttled by the Allies 100 miles off the northwest coast of Ireland
  August 31 The Women’s Royal Canadian Naval Service is disbanded. A women’s division of the Royal Canadian Navy is reestablished in 1951 as part of the Royal Canadian Navy (Reserve), and in 1955 a women’s component of the regular navy was authorized [31]
  September 30 sSentencing begins in the Nuremberg Trials. Germany’s Reichsmarschall Hermann Goering is sentenced to death at the Nuremberg trials. But before he was hanged, he commits suicide on October 15. [115, 116]
  October 1 Albert Speer, Minister of Armaments and War Production in Nazi Germany, is sentenced to twenty years in prison for war crimes in Nuremberg. Wernher von Braun, whom Speer saved in 1944 by interceding following his arrest by the SS, is now working at White Sands
  October 15 Herman Goering, head of the Luftwaffe and Gestapo, commits suicide by cyanide the night before his execution.

 

He was 53 [116]

  October 16 10 high-ranking members of Nazi-Germany are executed by hanging
1951
  October 22 Early in the morning, armed Russian soldiers arrive at the homes of German technicians in the Soviet occupied zone and tell them they are to be forcibly deported to Soviet industrial ministries. Five hundred of the 7000 deportees are rocket engineers. [117]
1947
  November 3 Pohl Trial in Nuremberg ends with 15 found guilty of war crimes [2]
  November 10 Belgian collaborator Victor Matthys is executed [2]
1948
General Hideki Tojo and seven other Japanese military and government officials are sentenced to death for their actions during World War II by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East in Tokyo, Japan. [77, 116] November 12 ]
1949
Chariman Mao proclaims the establishment of the People’s Republic of China following years of Civil War [39] September 21  
  October 7 Communist East Germany, aka the German Democratic Republic, is established. The country exists until 1990 when East Germany and West Germany were reunified. [116]
  December 9 The “Subsequent Nuremberg trials” begin with the “Doctors’ trial”, prosecuting physicians and officers alleged to be involved in Nazi human experimentation and mass murder under the guise of euthanasia. [44]
1947
  November 24 1 A trial of 40 former SS garrison members of the German Nazi Auschwitz concentration and extermination camp – including the 2nd commandant Arthur Liebehenschel – began in Krakow [6]
1948
Seven Japanese #military and political leaders, including Prime Minister Hideki #Tojo, are executed at Sugamo Prison in #Tokyo, Japan after being convicted of war crimes during World War II [116] December 23  
1949
  February 1 Rationing of bread in Paris ends. Rationing had been reinstated on January 1, 1946, shortly after World War II ended [116]
1952
  October 3 Tea rations in Britain, imposed as a result of World War II, are lifted 12 years after they were imposed [116]
1960
  May 11 Adolf Eichmann is captured by the Mossad in Argentina [44]
1961
  December 15 German Nazi-SS Lieutenant Colonel Adolf Eichmann is sentenced to death in Israel for war crimes he committed during World War II [116]
2004
World War II monument opens in Washington, D.C. April 29 The memorial is located on 7.4 acres on the former site of the Rainbow Pool at the National Mall between the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial.
2018
The Dutch national railway company is setting up a commission to investigate how it can pay individual reparations for its role in mass deportations of Jews by Nazi occupiers during World War II November 28  
South Korea’s Supreme Court orders Japanese Mitsubishi to pay compensation for WWII slave labour November 29  
  December 9 The Doctors Trial begins at Nuremberg [2]

Sources:

    1. https://twitter.com/sarahsundin
    2. https://twitter.com/ww2db
    3. https://twitter.com/wartimeni
    4. https://twitter.com/MilHistNow
    5. The Darkest Year
    6. Auschwitz Memorial
    7. DDaywear
    8. Ron_Eisele
    9. ClassicWarBirds
    10. Yesterday Channel
    11. World War II History (The War Years)
    12. World War II stories from 1944
    13. RG Poulussen
    14. History Lovers Club
    15. WWII Today
    16. WWII Tweets from 1941
    17. World War II History
    18. WW2 History Hit
    19. WW2 Battlefields
    20. WorldWar2Facts
    21. Home Front Museum
    22. Tank Archives
    23. Polish Embassy UK
    24. James Holland
    25. National WWII Museum 
    26. History Extra
    27. GCHQ
    28. WW2 Tweets from 1942
    29. Science Museum
    30. Dunkirk 1940 Museum
    31. On this day in Canadian Military History
    32. WartimeNI
    33. Imperial War Museums
    34. BBC Archive
    35. Military History Matters
    36. Leggier Battlefield Tours
    37. Pacific Wrecks @PacificWrecks
    38. Royal Navy @RoyalNavy
    39. History Hit @HistoryHit
    40. National World War II Museum @WWIImuseum
    41. The Army Museum @armymuseumhfx
    42. Historical Firearms @historicfirearm
    43. Shane @WarGen39_45
    44. Marina Amaral @marinaamaral2
    45. Courtroom 600 @Courtroom600
    46. Trev Clark’s Daily Aviation History Feed @TrevClark1958
    47. American Veteran’s Center @AVCupdate
    48. Military Women’s Memorial @wimsatweets
    49. The Wiener Holocaust Library @wienerlibrary
    50. WWII Siberian Exile @polishodyssey
    51. James Brun @LeBrunJames91
    52. Museumships@museumships
    53. WW2 Nation @WW2Nation
    54. Marine Corps Museum @MarineMuseum
    55. Institute of National Remembrance @ipngovpl_eng
    56. James Rogers @DrJamesRogers
    57. Mark Simner @marksimner
    58. 38 (Irish) Brigade @Irishbrigadeww
    59. Bletchley Park @bletchlepark
    60. RAF Museum @RAFMUSEUM
    61. Roger Litwiller @RLitwiller
    62. The Minesweepers’ Victory @Sweepers3945
    63. The Irish at War @irelandbattles
    64. The Great War @WW1_Series
    65. The Peoples Mosquito @PeoplesMosquito
    66. U.S. Naval Institute @NavalInstitute
    67. Pippa Ettore @pettore
    68. U.S Naval Undersea Museum @underseaNavy
    69. Pritzker Military Museum & Library @pritzkerlibrary
    70. CMH @USArmyCMH
    71. RAF BBMF @RAFBBMF
    72. BentleyPriory Museum @bentley_priory
    73. Alina Nowobilska @WW2girl1944
    74. U.S. Naval History @USNHistory
    75. World War II History @thewaryears
    76. Marc Laurenceau – D-Day Overlord @MarcLaurenceau
    77. Sir Joe Guybee @JGuybee
    78. Intrepid,Sea, Air & Space Museum @IntrepidMuseum
    79. RAF Benevolent Fund @RAFBF
    80. Juno Beach Centre @JunoBeachCentre
    81. EHRI Project @EHRIproject
    82. Battle of Britain Bunker @BofBBunker
    83. RHLI @RHLIXIII
    84. Historical Canada @HistoricaCanada
    85. Keith Lowe @KeithLoweAuthor
    86. Live Tweets from 1942 @RealTimeWWII
    87. On This Day RN @PmtjosdauRN
    88. Major General Mick Ryan @WarintheFuture
    89. S. P. WWII Museum @southpacificww2
    90. RM Historical Society @RMHistSociety
    91. Friend of the Army’s Women’s Museum @AW_Museum
    92. US Army & Calvary collection @ArmorCollection
    93. OrzelRosyth @OrzelRosyth
    94. Solway Aviation Museum @SolwayAviation
    95. Dennis Burns @DWB55
    96. Paul Reed @sommecourt
    97. The Battle of Britain Memorial @Memorial_theFew
    98. Hurricane Heritage @HurricaneR4118
    99. Gareth Davies @bermicourt
    100. Home Front in WW2 @HomeFrontWW2
    101. Peter Smith @PeterSm47530584
    102. National Museum USAF @AFmuseum
    103. IHRA @theIHRA
    104. Texas Military Forces Museum @TMFMuseum
    105. Roger Moorhouse @Roger_Moorhouse
    106. Jonathan @3468marsh
    107. PugetSoundNavyMuseum @PSNavyMuseum
    108. World War II History @WWIIhistorynet
    109. Comando Supremo: Italy in WW2 @commando_supremo
    110. Army Flying Museum @armyflying.com
    111. Adam Berry @Agrbez
    112. 16 Air Assault Brigade @16AirAssltBde
    113. Aquila Polonica @polandww2
    114. James @historyboy77
    115. Witness To War @WitnessToWar
    116. Today In History @URDailyHistory
    117. Chasing The Moon: The Book @ChasingMoonBk
    118. UK Holocaust Memorial @UKHMF
    119. Royal Canadian Navy @RoyalCanNavy
    120. Revd Nicholas Mye @RevdPye
    121. Naval Aviation Museum @NavalMuseum
    122. Alex Kershaw @kershaw_alex
    123. CombatPix @combatpix1
    124. Commando Comics @CommandoComic
    125. World War 2 stories from 1940 @WW2Today
    126. Holocaust Education @UCL_Holocaust
    127. Klaas Meijer @klaasm67
    128. WWII Memorial Friends @WWIIMemorial
    129. Artic Convoy Museum @InfoRACM
    130. The Crusader Project @crusaderproject
    131. Holocaust Memorial Day Trust @HMD_UK
    132. OSTI.GOV @OSTIGOV
    133. Aust War Memorial @AWMemorial
    134. Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum @CWHM
    135. USS Kidd @USSKIDD_DD661
    136. IX Troop Carrier Command @ix_tcc
    137. RN Ship Losses @RNshiplosses
    138. Casemate UK @Casemate_UK
    139. British Pathé @BritishPathe
    140. David Wilding @DavidWilding231
    141. BerlinCompanion @kreuzberged
    142. Empire Attendant @EmpireAttendant
    143. Arkady Rzegocki @ArkadyRzegocki
    144. Eisenhower Library @IkeLibrary
    145. Melissas Library Life @life_melissas
    146. Katja Hoyer @hoyer_kat
    147. Stephen Fisher @SeaSpitfires

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