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    Centuries: 19th century - 20th century - 21st century
    Decades: 1890s - 1900s - 1910s - 1920s - 1930s - 1940s - 1950s - 1960s - 1970s - 1980s - 1990s

    Years: 1940 - 1941 - 1942 - 1943 - 1944 - 1945 - 1946 - 1947 - 1948 - 1949 - 1950

    • January 5 - The Soviet Union recognizes the new pro-Soviet government of Poland
    • January 7 - British General Bernard Montgomery holds a press conference in which he claims credit for victory in the Battle of the Bulge
    • January 12 - World War II: The Soviets begin a very large offensive in Eastern Europe against the Nazis.
    • January 13 - Soviet patrol arrests Raoul Wallenberg in Hungary
    • January 16 - Adolf Hitler moves into his underground bunker
    • January 17 - World War II: Soviets occupy Warsaw
    • January 17 - Nazis begin to evacuate from Auschwitz concentration camp
    • January 27 - The Red Army arrives at Auschwitz and Birkenau in Poland and find the Naziconcentration camp where 1.1-1.5 million people were murdered.
    • January 28 - World War II: Supplies begin to reach China over the newly reopened Burma Road.
    • January 31 - Eddie Slovik is executed, the first American soldier since the Civil War to be executed for desertion
    • February 2 - World War II: President Franklin D. Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill leave to meet with Soviet leader Joseph Stalin at the Yalta Conference.
    • February 3 - World War II: Russia agrees to enter the Pacific Theatre conflict against Japan.
    • February 4 - World War II: President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Winston Churchill and Soviet leader Joseph Stalin begin the Yalta Conference (ends February 11)
    • February 7 - World War II: General Douglas MacArthur returns to Manila
    • February 13 - World War II: Soviet Union forces capture Budapest, Hungary from the Nazis.
    • February 13 - World War II: The British Air Force bombs Dresden, Germany.
    • February 14 - Chile, Ecuador, Paraguay and Peru join the United Nations.
    • February 16 - World War II: American forces land on Corregidor island in the Philippines.
    • February 16 - American forces recapture the Bataan Peninsula
    • February 19 - World War II: Battle of Iwo Jima - about 30,000 United States Marines landed on Iwo Jima starting the battle.
    • February 23 - Following the American victory at the Battle of Iwo Jima, a group of United States Marines reach the top of Mount Surabachi on the island and are photographed raising the American flag. The photo will later win a Pulitzer Prize.
    • February 23 - World War II: The capital of the Philippines, Manila, is liberated by American forces.
    • February 24 - Egyptian Premier Ahmed Maher Pasha is killed in Parliament after reading a decree.
    • March 3 - World War II: Previously neutral Finland declares war on the Axis powers.
    • March 6 - Communist-led government formed in Romania
    • March 7 - World War II: American troops seize the bridge over the Rhine River at Remagen, Germany and begin to cross.
    • March 8 - Josip Broz Tito forms a government in Yugoslavia
    • March 9 - March 10 - World War II: American B-29 bombers attack Japan with incendiary bombs. Tokyo is fire-bombed killing 100,000 citizens.
    • March 16 - World War II: The Battle of Iwo Jima ends but small pockets of Japanese resistance persist.
    • March 18 - World War II: 1,250 American bombers attack Berlin.
    • March 19 - World War II: Adolf Hitler orders that all industries, military installations, shops, transportation facilities and communications facilities in Germany be destroyed.
    • March 19 - World War II: Off the coast of Japan, kamikazes hit the aircraft carrier USS Franklin killing 800 of her crew.
    • March 21 - World War II: British troops liberate Mandalay, Burma
    • March 22 - The Arab League was formed with the adoption of a charter in Cairo, Egypt.
    • March 30 - World War II: Soviet Union forces invade Austria and take Vienna.
    • April 1 - World War II: United States troops land on Okinawa in the last campaign of the war.
    • April 4 - World War II: American troops liberate Ohrdruf death camp in Germany.
    • April 7 - World War II: The Japanese battleship Yamato is sunk 200 miles north of Okinawa while in-route to a suicide mission.
    • April 10 - The Allied Forces liberated their first Nazi concentration camp, Buchenwald.
    • April 12 - United States President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1933-1945) dies in office; Vice President Harry S. Truman (1945-1953) takes the Oath of Office.
    • April 25 - Founding negotiations of United Nations in San Francisco
    • April 25 - World War II: United States and Russian troops link up at the Elbe River, cutting Germany in two
    • April 28 - Italian dictator Benito Mussolini and his mistress, Clara Petacci, are hanged upside down by Italian partisans as they attempt to flee the country.
    • April 30 - Adolf Hitler and his wife of one day, Eva Braun, commit suicide as Russian troops approach Berlin.
    • May 1 - Josef Goebbels and his wife commit suicide after killing their 6 children.
    • May 2 - The Soviet Union announces the fall of Berlin. Soviet soldiers hoist the red flag over the Reichstag.
    • May 3 - Rocket scientist Werner von Braun and 120 members of his team surrender to US forces. They later help start the US space program.
    • May 5 - Ezra Pound, poet and author, is arrested by American soldiers in Italy for treason.
    • May 5 - US armored unit liberates prisoners of Mauthausen concentration camp - including Simon Wiesenthal
    • May 8 - V-E Day (Victory in Europe, as Nazi Germany surrenders) commemorates the end of World War II in Europe.
    • May 23 - Heinrich Himmler, the head of the Nazi Gestapo, commits suicide in British custody.
    • May 25 - In Atlantic, ships can finally keep their lights lit
    • May 28 - William Joyce, known as "Lord Haw-Haw" is captured. He is later charged with high treason in London for his English-language wartime broadcasts on German radio. He is hanged in January of 1946.
    • June 1 - British take over Lebanon and Syria
    • June 6 - King Hakon VII of Norway return to Norway
    • June 11 - William Lyon Mackenzie King is reelected as Canadian prime minister.
    • June 24 - Victory parade in Red Square
    • June 26 - United Nations charter signed.
    • July 1 - Germany is divided between Allied occupation forces
    • July 16 - The Trinity Test, the first test of an atomic bomb, using 6 kilograms of plutonium, succeeds in detonating, unleashing an explosion equivalent to that of 20 kilotons of TNT.
    • July 17 - Harry S. Truman, Josef Stalin and Winston Churchill (and later his successor, Clement Atlee) opened the Potsdam Conference for the final Allied summit of World War II.
    • July 23 - French marshall Henri Petain, who headed the Vichy government during World War II goes on trial, charged with treason.
    • July 26 - Winston Churchill resigns as Great Britain?s prime minister after his Conservative Party is soundly defeated by the Labour Party. Clement Atlee becomes the new prime minister.
    • July 28 - A US bomber accidentally crashes into the Empire State Building, killing 14 people.
    • July 29 - The USS Indianapolis is hit and sunk by an I-58 Japanese submarine. Some 900 survivors jump into the sea and are adrift for 4 days. Nearly 600 die before help arrives. Captain Charles Butler MacVey III is later court-martialed.
    • July 29 - The BBC Light Programme radio station was launched, aimed at mainstream light entertainment and music.
    • August 6 - August 9 - Two atomic bombs, (Little Boy and Fat Man) are dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan, killing 500,000 citizens ending World War II.
    • August 13 - Zionist World Congress approaches British government to talk about founding of Israel.
    • August 15 - Imperial Japan surrenders. The United States called this day V-J Day (Victory in Japan).
    • August 17 - Indonesian nationalists declare independence from the Netherlands. Achmad Sukarno becomes president.
    • End of August - Mao Tse-Tung and Chiang Kai-shek meet in Chungking to discuss an end to hostilities between the Communists and the Nationalists.
    • September 2 - Ho Chi Minh promulgates the Vietnamese Declaration of Independence, and unity from the north to the south.
    • September 5 - Iva Toguri D'Aquino, a Japanese-American suspected of being wartime radio propagandist "Tokyo Rose," is arrested in Yokohama.
    • September 8 - US troops occupy southern Korea, Russians occupy the north. This arrangement proves to be the beginning of a divided Korea.
    • September 8 - Hideki Tojo, Japanese prime minister during most of World War II, attempts suicide to avoid facing a war crimes tribunal.
    • September 20 - Mohandas Gandhi and Jawanahral Nehru demand that British troops leave India
    • October 10 - Russian code clerk Igor Gouzenko defects to Canada. He helps the West gain an understanding of Soviet spy rings in North America.
    • October 15 - The former Vichy French premier Pierre Laval is executed by firing squad for his wartime collaboration with the Germans.
    • October 17 - Colonel Juan Peron stages a coup d'etat, becoming ruler of Argentina.
    • October 18 - The first German war crimes trial begins in Nuremberg.
    • October 21 - Women in France are allowed to vote for the first time.
    • October 23 - Jackie Robinson signs a contract with the Montreal Royals.
    • October 27 - Indonesian separatists riot and fight Dutch and British security forces
    • October 29 - Getulio Vargas, president of Brazil, resigns
    • November 1 - John H. Johnson publishes the first issue of Ebony Magazine.
    • November 13 - Charles de Gaulle is elected president of France.
    • November 29 - The Federal People's Republic of Yugoslavia is proclaimed. Marshal Tito is named president.
    • November - Assembly of the world's first general purpose electronic computer, the Electronic Numerical Integrator Analyzer and Computer (ENIAC), is completed. It covers 1800 feet of floor space. The first set of calculations is run on the computer.
    • December 20 - Gen. George S. Patton dies in a car accident at the age of 60.
    • December 27 - Twenty-eight nations sign an agreement creating the World Bank.
    • December 27 - Terror strikes against British military bases in Palestine.
    • Foundation of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
    • Poland has two rival governments
    • Discovery of Nag Hammadi scriptures
    • Dutch painter Hans Van Meegeren is arrested for collaboration with nazis but the paintings he had sold to Goering are found to be fakes.
    • Female suffrage in Guatemala and Japan
    • Denmark recognizes independent Iceland
    Art, Culture & Fashion Science and Technology Births: Deaths: Nobel Prizes:


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