TIMELINE

Click the date:

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

1933

January 30 Adolph Hitler is appointed chancellor of Germany.

March 22 Nazis establish the concentration camp at Dachau.

April 7 Germany passes its first anti-Jewish law.

September 29 German Jews are prohibited from owning land.

1934

August 2 German President von Hindenberg dies, and Hitler declares himself Fuhrer und Reichskanzler (Leader and Reich Chancellor).

1935

September 15Germany creates the Nuremberg Laws, which deprives German Jews of their rights of citizenship.

1936

Berlin hosts the summer Olympics. In an attempt to impress foreign visitors, Hitler temporarily limits actions against Jews.

1937

July 15 The concentration camp at Buchenwald opens.

1938

March 13 German troops enter Austria.

July 23 Nazis declare that all Jews over the age of fifteen must carry identification cards at all times and present them upon request or inquiry from any police officer.

October 5 All Jewish passports must be stamped with a large red J.

November 9-10 Hitler and German Propaganda Minister Goebbels invite Germans to "rise in bloody vengeance against the Jews." Nazis all over Germany and Austria burglarize and vandalize Jewish homes, businesses, and synagogues during Kristallnacht ("the Night of Broken Glass"). Twenty-five thousand men are sent to concentration camps, 7500 businesses are destroyed, 267 synagogues are burned, and 91 people are killed.

November 15 All Jewish students are expelled from the German education system.

1939

Denmark amends a civil law regarding anti-Semitism: anyone found guilty of anti-Semitism will face a fine or imprisonment. The law remains in effect until Germany's 1940 invasion.

March 15 Nazi troops enter Czechoslovakia.

September 1 World War II begins, as Germany invades Poland, the country with the largest Jewish population in Europe.

September 3 Great Britain and France declare war on Germany.

September 17 The Soviet Union invades Poland.

October 28 The first Polish ghetto is established in Piotrkow.

November 30 Germany invades Finland.

1940

February 12 Nazis send the first German Jews to concentration camps.

April 9 Germany invades Norway and Denmark.

May 10 Germany invades the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, and France.

May 14 The Netherlands surrender to Germany.

May 20 The concentration camp at Auschwitz is established.

May 28 Belgium surrenders to Germany.

June 10 Italy declares war on France and Great Britain.

June 14 German troops enter Paris.

June 22 France surrenders to Germany.

July Following Nazi orders, Denmark's free press ceases operation.

September 13 Italy invades Egypt.

September 27 Japan joins Germany and Italy in the Axis by signing the Tripartite (Axis) Pact.

October 2 The Warsaw ghetto is established.

October 7 Germany invades Romania.

October 28 Italy invades Greece.

November The Krakow ghetto is sealed with 70,000 Jews inside.

November 16 The Warsaw ghetto is sealed with 400,000 Jews inside

November 20 Hungary joins Axis.

November 22 Romania joins Axis.

October 2 Slovakia joins the Axis.

1941

Under Nazi pressure, Denmark passes a law making it illegal to question Denmark's relationship with Germany either in writing or in speech.

January As a sign of cooperation, Denmark manufactures six "torpedo boats" for Germany.

March 1 The Nazis order the expansion of the concentration camp at Auschwitz.

March 2 Germany occupies Bulgaria

March 25 Yugoslavia joins Axis.

June Denmark ceases communication with the USSR under pressure from Germany. The anti-Nazi "V" campaign begins in Denmark.

June 22 Germany invades the USSR; Italy and Romania declare war on the USSR as well. Germany outlaws communism in Denmark; the Danish resistance movement begins to surface.

June 26 Finland declares war on the USSR.

June 27 Hungary declares war on the USSR.

July 31 Germany prepares for the "Final Solution to the Jewish problem" through "emigration and evacuation of Jews in all territories of Europe under German occupation."

September 1 Germany forces its Jewish citizens to wear the yellow star.

September 6 The Vilna ghetto is established.

October 14 The mass deportation of Jews to concentration camps begins. The concentration camp at Birkenau opens.

October 23 After an explosion occurs in the Romanian troop headquarters, 19,000 Jews are massacred in retaliation in Odessa--200 for every Romanian officer killed and 100 for each soldier killed.

December 7 Japan bombs the American bases at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.

December 8 Japan declares war on the United States and Great Britain; the United States and Great Britain declare war on Japan.

December 9 China declares war on Japan, Germany, and Italy.

December 11 Germany and Italy declare war on the United States; the United States declares war on Germany and Italy.

1942

March Germany begins to deport Slovak and French Jews to the concentration camp at Auschwitz.

May Poison gas is first used on Jewish prisoners at Sobibor, a Nazi concentration camp.

June 1 Germany orders Jews in France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Croatia, Slovakia, and Romania to wear the yellow star.

July 22 The concentration camp at Treblinka is established.

Summer Dutch, Polish, French, Belgian, and Croatian Jews sent to extermination camps.

September 26 Hitler sends a birthday telegram to King Christian X of Denmark, who responds curtly. The King's reply, as well as previous incidents of Danish resistance, are used as excuses for Germany to strengthen its grasp on Denmark. Hitler soon assigns Nazi official Werner Best to control Denmark with "an iron hand."

Autumn Britain calls for Danes to bomb major Nazi holdings in Denmark.

October 4 Naxis prepare German Jews for transfer from concentration camps to extermination camps.

1943

The number of Jews killed by SS Einsatzgruppen passes 1,000,000.

January 8 The first signs of resistance surface in the ghetto at Warsaw.

February 2 Germany surrenders at Stalingrad in the first major defeat of Hitler's armies.

February 19 Jews living in the Warsaw ghetto revolt, and German forces kill an estimated 40,000 of the Jews who survived.

March 14 The Krakow ghetto is liquidated.

May 19 The Nazis declare Berlin to be Judenfrei--cleansed of all Jews.

June The Polish and Russian ghettos are destroyed. All captives are scheduled for shipment to extermination camps. Widespread resistance.

August 2 Seven hundred and fifty prisoners in the concentration camp at Treblinka in Poland revolt and try to escape; of that 750, only 70 survive.

August 28 Germany orders Denmark to accept many ultimatums, including the following: complete surrender, mandatory 7:30 pm restaurant closings, capitulation of all arms, and the establishment of expeditious courts for the swift prosecution of Danish criminal acts committed against Germany. Denmark refuses.

August 29 A State of Emergency is declared in Denmark. King Christian is placed under house arrest. There are widespread arrests and phone lines and mail service are cut. The Danish government and army are dissolved. Denmark's naval fleet sinks itself to avoid a German takeover.

September 8 Werner Best sends a telegram to Germany suggesting the removal of all Jews from Denmark.

September 28 Werner Best receives the order to begin the removal of the Danish Jews and plans to start on Friday, October 1. Best's assistant, Georg Duckwitz, informs influential Danish friends of the Nazi plan.

October 1-2 Denmark sends its Jews into hiding. The plans for their escape are in process. The Danish Underground organizes and helps over 7000 Jews escape. The Danish Jews use small crafts, fishing boats, and even kayaks to escape to safety in neutral Sweden.

October The 200 Danish Jews who do not escape are captured and shipped to the concentration camp Theresienstadt.

October 13 Italy declares war on Germany.

October 14 An armed revolt occurs at Sobibor concentration camp. Three hundred Jews and Soviet POWs break out and go into hiding in the surrounding woods.

December 30 Due to the continuous uprising of the Danish people, Germany tightens control on the country, threatening that newspaper offices, places of amusement, and all Danish business refusing to supply wartime goods would be blown up.

1944

March 19 Germany occupies Hungary.

May 15 Hungarian Jews are sent to concentration camps.

June 6 D Day: Allied troops land on the beaches of Normandy in France.

June 23 The Danish Commission is granted permission to inspect the concentration camp at Theresienstadt to observe the treatment of its Danish prisoners. The Nazis engage in a quick restoration process, beautifying Theresienstadt and producing a "model ghetto." During this process, 17,000 Jews are sent to Auschwitz so that Theresienstadt would not appear overcrowded and unpresentable.

Summer Auschwitz records gassing over 9000 prisoners in one day.

August 4 Anne Frank and her family are arrested in Amsterdam.

August 6 The last Jewish ghetto in Poland is liquidated.

November 2 With the Allies fast approaching, Danish authorities begin efforts to get their prisoners out of Germany before the country falls into mass chaos. Werner Best and other Germans occupying Denmark try to cover up the mass killings; they strike a bargain with Denmark. While almost all Jews remaining in Theresienstadt are sent to Auschwitz, no Danish Jews are deported. Instead the Danish Jews are rescued by Swedish Red Cross vans and driven back to safety in Denmark.

1945

January 6 USSR troops liberate Budapest.

January 17 USSR troops liberate Auschwitz.

Spring Under increasing pressure as the Allies approach, the Nazis orchestrate death marches of prisoners from Auschwitz and Buchenwald to unknown destinations.

April The USSR enters Germany from the east, and Allied troops enter from the west.

April 12 U. S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt dies; Harry S. Truman becomes president.

Click here to return to the main menu of The Yellow Star Guide.