Timeline of the Holocaust: 1933-1945

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

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January 30

Adolf Hitler appointed Chancellor of Germany

March 22

Dachau concentration camp opens

April 1

Boycott of Jewish shops and businesses

April 7

Laws for Reestablishment of the Civil Service barred Jews from holding civil service, university, and state positions

April 26

Gestapo established

May 10

Public burning of books written by Jews, political dissidents, and others not approved by the state

July 14

Law stripping East European Jewish immigrants of German citizenship


August 2

Hitler proclaims himself Führer und Reichskanzler (Leader and Reich Chancellor). Armed forces must now swear allegiance to him


May 31

Jews barred from serving in the German armed forces

September 15

"Nuremberg Laws": anti-Jewish racial laws enacted; Jews no longer considered German citizens; Jews could not marry Aryans; nor could they fly the German flag

November 15

Germany defines a "Jew": anyone with three Jewish grandparents; someone with two Jewish grandparents who identifies as a Jew


March 3

Jewish doctors barred from practicing medicine in German institutions

March 7

Germans march into the Rhineland, previously demilitarized by the Versailles Treaty

June 17

Himmler appointed the Chief of German Police


Sachsenhausen concentration camp opens

October 25

Hitler and Mussolini form Rome-Berlin Axis


July 15

Buchenwald concentration camp opens


March 13

Anschluss (incorporation of Austria): all antisemitic decrees immediately applied in Austria

April 26

Mandatory registration of all property held by Jews inside the Reich

July 6

Evian Conference held in Evian, France on the problem of Jewish refugees

August 1

Adolf Eichmann establishes the Office of Jewish Emigration in Vienna to increase the pace of forced emigration

August 3

Italy enacts sweeping antisemitic laws

September 30

Munich Conference: Great Britain and France agree to German occupation of the Sudetenland, previously western Czechoslovakia

October 5

Following request by Swiss authorities, Germans mark all Jewish passports with a large letter "J" to restrict Jews from immigrating to Switzerland

October 28

17,000 Polish Jews living in Germany expelled; Poles refused to admit them; 8,000 are stranded in the frontier village of Zbaszyn

November 7

Assassination in Paris of German diplomat Ernst vom Rath by Herschel Grynszpan

November 9-10

Kristallnacht (Night of Broken Glass): anti-Jewish pogrom in Germany, Austria, and the Sudetenland; 200 synagogues destroyed; 7,500 Jewish shops looted; 30,000 male Jews sent to concentration camps (Dachau, Buchenwald, Sachsenhausen)

November 12

Decree forcing all Jews to transfer retail businesses to Aryan hands

November 15

All Jewish pupils expelled from German schools

December 12

One billion Marks fine levied against German Jews for the destruction of property during Kristallnacht


January 30

Hitler in Reichstag speech: "if war erupts it will mean the Vernichtung (extermination) of European Jews"

March 15

Germans occupy Czechoslovakia

August 23

Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact signed: non-aggression pact between Soviet Union and Germany

September 1

Beginning of World War II: Germany invades Poland

September 21

Heydrich issues directives to establish ghettos in German-occupied Poland

October 12

Germany begins deportation of Austrian and Czech Jews to Poland

October 28

First Polish ghetto established in Piotrków

November 23

Jews in German-occupied Poland forced to wear an arm band or yellow star


April 9

Germans occupy Denmark and southern Norway

May 7

Lodz Ghetto (Litzmannstadt) sealed: 165,000 people in 1.6 square miles

May 10

Germany invades the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, and France

May 20

Concentration camp established at Auschwitz

June 22

France surrenders

August 8

Battle of Britain begins

September 27

Rome-Berlin-Tokyo Axis

November 16

Warsaw Ghetto sealed: ultimately contained 500,000 people


January 21-26

Anti-Jewish riots in Romania, led by the Iron Guard (Romanian fascist organization); hundreds of Jews butchered

February 1

German authorities begin rounding up Polish Jews for transfer to Warsaw Ghetto


Adolf Eichmann appointed head of the department for Jewish affairs of the Reich Security Main Office (Gestapo), Section IV B 4.

April 6

Germany attacks Yugoslavia and Greece; occupation follows

June 22

Germany invades the Soviet Union

July 31

Heydrich appointed by Göring to implement the "Final Solution"

September 1

German Jews required to wear yellow star of David with the word "Jude"

September 28-29

34,000 Jews massacred at Babi Yar outside Kiev


Establishment of Auschwitz II (Birkenau) for the extermination of Jews; Gypsies, Poles, Russians, and others were also murdered at the camp

December 7

Japanese attack Pearl Harbor

December 8

Chelmno (Kulmhof) extermination camp begins operations: 340,000 Jews, 20,000 Poles and Czechs murdered by April 1943

December 11

United States declares war on Japan and Germany


January 20

Wannsee Conference in Berlin: Heydrich outlines plan to murder Europe's Jews

March 17

Extermination begins in Belzec; by end of 1942 600,000 Jews murdered


Extermination by gas begins in Sobibor killing center; by October 1943, 250,000 Jews murdered


Jewish partisan units established in the forests of Byelorussia and the Baltic States

July 22

Germans establish Treblinka concentration camp


Deportation of Jews to killing centers from Belgium, Croatia, France, the Netherlands, and Poland; armed resistance by Jews in ghettos of Kletzk, Kremenets, Lakhva, Mir, Tuchin, and Weisweiz


Deportation of Jews from Germany, Greece and Norway to killing centers; Jewish partisan movement organized in forests near Lublin



German 6th Army surrenders at Stalingrad (Volgograd)


Liquidation of Craców ghetto

April 19

Warsaw Ghetto revolt begins as Germans attempt to liquidate 70,000 inhabitants; Jewish underground fights Nazis until early June


Liquidation of the Warsaw Ghetto.  On May 16, 1943, SS and Police Chief Jurgen Stroop proclaimed, "180 Jews, bandits, and subhumans were destroyed. The Jewish quarter of Warsaw is no more."


Himmler orders the liquidation of all ghettos in Poland and the Soviet Union


Armed resistance by Jews in Bedzin, Bialystok, Czestochowa, Lvov, and Tarnów ghettos


Liquidation of large ghettos in Minsk, Vilna (Vilnius), and Riga

October 14

Armed revolt in Sobibor extermination camp


Rescue of the Danish Jewry


March 19

Germany occupies Hungary

May 15

Nazis begin deporting Hungarian Jews; by June 27, 380,000 sent to Auschwitz

June 6

D-Day: Allied invasion at Normandy


Red Army repels Nazi forces

July 20

Group of German officers attempt to assassinate Hitler

July 24

Russians liberate Majdanek killing center

October 7

Revolt by inmates at Auschwitz; one crematorium blown up


Last Jews deported from Theresienstadt (Terezin) to Auschwitz

November 8

Beginning of death march of approximately 40,000 Jews from Budapest to Austria


January 17

Evacuation of Auschwitz; beginning of death march

January 25

Beginning of death march for inmates of Stutthof

April 6-10

Death march of inmates of Buchenwald

April 30

Hitler commits suicide

May 8

V-E Day: Germany surrenders; end of Third Reich

August 6

Bombing of Hiroshima

August 9

Bombing of Nagasaki

August 15

V-J Day: Victory over Japan proclaimed.

September 2

Japan surrenders; end of World War II

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