Gleichschaltung is the German term applied to the Nazification of all aspects of German society following the Nazi rise to power in 1933.
Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party adapted, manipulated, and radicalized the unfounded belief in the existence of an "Aryan race." Learn about the term Aryan.
The Harrison Report criticized conditions in the DP camps, called for changes in the treatment of Jewish DPs, and recommended allowing them to emigrate to the US and Palestine.
As of mid-2022, there were about 27 million refugees. Learn more about these refugees, the violence they face, and the global impact of the refugee crisis.
Nazi racism and racial antisemitism ultimately led to mass murder and genocide. Learn more about Nazi racial ideology.
Beginning in 1938, the Nazis increased their territorial control outside of Germany. By 1942, three years into World War II, Nazi Germany reached the peak of its expansion. At the height of its power, Germany had incorporated, seized, or occupied most of the continent. However, also in 1942, the Allied Powers started to systematically bomb Germany. They would continue to do so until Germany's surrender in 1945, weakening the war effort and demolishing cities. Slowly, the Allied Powers began pushing…
The Nazis utilized the German police for mass repression and genocide. Learn more about the Nazification of the police force from 1933-1939.
Behind the number of victims of the Holocaust and Nazi persecution are people whose hopes and dreams were destroyed. Learn about the toll of Nazi policies.
Learn more about Rudolf (Rezső) Kasztner (1906-1957) during World War II and his controversial efforts to help refugees escape Hungary in 1944.
Key dates illustrating the relationship between Germany’s professional military elite and the Nazi state, and the German military’s role in the Holocaust.
Joseph Leo Diamantstein was born in Heidelberg, Germany, on December 1, 1924, to Jewish parents. He was the youngest of four children. His family experienced antisemitism in Frankfurt, and ultimately decided to leave Germany. Beginning in 1933, the Hitler Youth and the League of German Girls had an important role to play in the new Nazi regime. Through these organizations, the Nazi regime planned to indoctrinate young people with Nazi ideology. This was part of the process of Nazifying German…
Felix was born to an assimilated Jewish family in Lublin, Poland. His father was a locksmith and his mother was a singer. Following the German invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939, Felix fled east to Rovno and then to Soviet-occupied Lvov, where he was accepted at a medical school. After the German invasion of the Soviet Union in June 1941, Felix was taken to a labor camp. He escaped and returned to Lublin, and found that his family had been forced into the ghetto established there. After the…
Selma was the youngest of four children born to Jewish parents. When she was 7, Selma and her family moved to the town of Zwolle where her parents ran a small hotel. When the Germans invaded the Netherlands in 1940, they confiscated the hotel. The family had to live in a poor Jewish section of the town. Selma went into hiding but was betrayed and then sent to the Westerbork camp. In April 1943 she was deported to Sobibor, where she worked in the clothes sorting area. There, the prisoners tried to pocket…
Explore a timeline of key events during 1943 in the history of Nazi Germany, World War II, and the Holocaust.
Learn how the "First Letter to all Judges" increased the pressure on German judges to give verdicts and sentences according to Nazi principles and ideology.
Halle an der Saale was a satellite camp of Buchenwald concentration camp. It was established by the Nazis in Saxony, Germany in 1941.
The Nazis occupied Zdziecioł (Zhetel), Poland in 1941. Learn more about the city and ghetto during World War II.
At the Nuremberg trials, Allied prosecutors submitted documentation left by the Nazi state itself. This evidence is a lasting refutation of attempts to deny the Holocaust.
Learn about the Freiburg subcamp of Flossenbürg, including its establishment, prisoner population, and conditions there.
The Oranienburg concentration camp was established as one of the first concentration camps in Nazi Germany on March 21, 1933. Learn more
In 1939, the Nazis established the Mannschafts-Stammlager (Stalag) IX B camp in Germany. Learn more about the camp’s history, prisoners, and liberation.
The Lackenbach internment and transit camp for Roma, located in what had been eastern Austria, was a departure point for deportations to Lodz and Auschwitz.
Charles Coughlin, Catholic priest and populist leader, promoted antisemitic and pro-fascist views. In the 1930s, he was one of the most influential public figures in the US.
In the spring of 1939, Gilbert and Eleanor Kraus rescued 50 Jewish children from Vienna, Austria, by bringing them to the United States. Learn about their mission.
Learn about responses in the United States to reports about Nazi anti-Jewish policies and violence against Jews from 1933–37.
Madeline was born into a middle class family in an area of Czechoslovakia that was annexed by Hungary in 1938-1939. Her father worked out of their home and her mother was a homemaker. Madeline attended high school. In April 1944 her family was forced into a Hungarian ghetto. The family lived in the ghetto for two weeks before being transported to Auschwitz. Madeline and her mother were separated from her father and older brother. Neither her father nor brother survived the war. A week after arriving in…
Reinhard Heydrich, Reich Security Main Office chief, was one of the main architects of the “Final Solution," the Nazi plan to murder the Jews of Europe.
Hajj Amin al-Husayni claimed to speak for the Arab nation and the Muslim world and sought an alliance with the Axis powers during WWII. Learn more about his actions
After WWII, prosecutors faced the challenge of assessing the guilt of propagandists whose words, images, and writings had supported Nazi brutality and mass murder.
The Auschwitz camp system, located in German-occupied Poland, was a complex of 3 camps, including a killing center. Learn about the history of Auschwitz.
On November 9–10, 1938, the Nazi regime coordinated a wave of antisemitic violence. This became known as Kristallnacht or the "Night of Broken Glass." Learn more
Learn about France during the Holocaust and WWII, the liberation of France, postwar trials, and the legacy of Vichy France’s collaboration with Nazi Germany.
Why did the United States go to war? What did Americans know about the “Final Solution”? How did Americans respond to news about the Holocaust? Learn more.
When WWII began, most Americans wanted the US to stay isolated from the war. From December 1941, the majority rallied in support of intervention to defeat the Axis powers.
The Columbia-Haus camp was one of the early camps established by the Nazi regime. It held primarily political detainees. Learn more about the history of the camp.
Explore a timeline of key events in the history of World War I and its aftermath. Learn about the conflict and its divisive peace.
Former Mufti of Jerusalem Hajj Amin al-Husayni was an exiled political leader who sought an alliance with the Axis Powers. Learn about his wartime propaganda efforts.
The Jewish children of Lodz suffered harsh conditions after the German invasion of Poland. Read excerpts from diaries where they recorded their experiences.
The Mauthausen concentration camp was established following the Nazi incorporation of Austria in 1938. Learn about the harsh conditions in the camp.
More than one thousand unaccompanied refugee children fleeing Nazi persecution arrived in the United States between 1933 and 1945. Learn more
Nazi Germany’s territorial expansion and the radicalization of Nazi anti-Jewish policies triggered a mass exodus. Learn about the US and the refugee crisis of 1938–41.
Prominent SS physician Josef Mengele, called the "angel of death" by his victims, conducted inhumane medical experiments on prisoners in the Auschwitz camp.
The Anschluss, Germany's annexation of Austria in March 1938, was the Nazi German regime’s first act of territorial aggression and expansion. Learn more.
The Nuremberg Special Court ruled on the Katzenberger Race Defilement Case in 1942. Learn more about the outcome and impact of the case.
Consideration of American responses to Nazism during the 1930s and 1940s raises questions about the responsibility to intervene in response to persecution or genocide in another country.
We would like to thank Crown Family Philanthropies and the Abe and Ida Cooper Foundation for supporting the ongoing work to create content and resources for the Holocaust Encyclopedia. View the list of all donors.