Learn more about the Western Desert campaign in Egypt and Libya between 1940-1943.
The Wannsee Conference was a high-level meeting of Nazi Party and German State officials to coordinate “the Final Solution of the Jewish Question.” Learn more.
Key dates illustrating the relationship between Germany’s professional military elite and the Nazi state, and the German military’s role in the Holocaust.
Shony was born to religious Jewish parents in a small Transylvanian city. He began to learn the violin at age 5. His town was occupied by Hungary in 1940 and by Germany in 1944. In May 1944, he was deported to the Auschwitz camp in Poland. He was transferred to the Natzweiler camp system in France and then to Dachau, where he was liberated by US troops in April 1945. In 1950, he immigrated to the United States, and became a composer and a professional violinist.
Explore a timeline of key events during 1941 in the history of Nazi Germany, World War II, and the Holocaust.
The Nazis occupied Zdziecioł (Zhetel), Poland in 1941. Learn more about the city and ghetto during World War II.
The Mir ghetto was established in Mir, Poland in 1941. Learn more about life and resistance in the ghetto.
At the Berga-Elster subcamp of Buchenwald, prisoners were forced to do dangerous and brutal work in tunnels to support fuel production for the German war effort.
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.
Nazi Germany established the killing centers of Belzec, Sobibor, and Treblinka as part of “Operation Reinhard,” the plan to murder all Jews in the General Government.
Hans Vogel and his family fled Paris following the German invasion. They eventually received papers allowing them to immigrate to the United States. During this time, Hans kept a diary that contains postcards, hand-drawn maps, and other illustrations of their flight. This page describes the lead-up to their departure for the United States, from Lisbon, on the Nyassa. Hans was born in Cologne, Germany on December 3, 1926. The family left Germany in 1936, settling in Paris. They remained there until the…
Diaries reveal some of the most intimate, heart-wrenching accounts of the Holocaust. They record in real time the feelings of loss, fear, and, sometimes, hope of those facing extraordinary peril. The diary of Hans Vogel, who fled Paris with his family while his father was interned, contains hand-drawn and colored maps of their flight. This page describes receiving papers allowing the family to immigrate to the United States. Hans was born in Cologne, Germany on December 3, 1926. The family left Germany…
Hans Vogel and his family fled Paris following the German invasion. They eventually received papers allowing them to immigrate to the United States. During this time, Hans kept a diary that contains postcards, hand-drawn maps, and other illustrations of their flight. This page describes the voyage on board the Nyassa to the United States. Hans was born in Cologne, Germany on December 3, 1926. The family left Germany in 1936, settling in Paris. They remained there until the outbreak of World War II.…
Hans Vogel and his family fled Paris following the German invasion. They eventually received papers allowing them to immigrate to the United States. During this time, Hans kept a diary that contains postcards, hand-drawn maps, and other illustrations of their flight. This page describes arriving in New York. Hans was born in Cologne, Germany on December 3, 1926. The family left Germany in 1936, settling in Paris. They remained there until the outbreak of World War II. Hans's father, Simon, was interned…
Tomas' parents were Jewish. His father, Robert Kulka, was a businessman from the Moravian town of Olomouc. His mother, Elsa Skutezka, was a milliner from Brno, the capital of Moravia. The couple was well-educated and spoke both Czech and German. They married in 1933 and settled in Robert's hometown of Olomouc. 1933-39: Tomas was born a year and a day after his parents were married. When Tomas was 3, his grandfather passed away and the Kulkas moved to Brno, which was his mother's hometown. On March 15,…
Marcus, known to his family as Moniek, was one of three children born to a Jewish family in the Polish town of Ulanow. His father worked as a tailor. Ulanow's Jewish community had many of its own organizations and maintained a large library. From the age of 3, Moniek attended a religious school. He started public school when he was 7. 1933-39: In 1935 Moniek's father left for America to find a job so that his family could later join him. He sent money to them while they waited for their emigration papers.…
Henry's Jewish parents lived in a Polish town in which their families had lived for 150 years. The Jewish community enjoyed good relations with their Polish neighbors; the local Polish population refused to cooperate when the government encouraged a boycott of Jewish businesses during a wave of antisemitism that swept Poland in the mid-1930s. 1933-39: In the years before Henry was born, his father owned an iron and coal factory. The Germans occupied Wierzbnik on September 5, 1939. While some Jews fled,…
Lea was born in the city of Sombor in northeastern Yugoslavia. When she was 3 years old, her parents divorced and she moved to Vienna with her mother, who taught English and French to Austrian children. Lea enjoyed living in Vienna as a child. 1933-39: Lea returned to Sombor almost every year to visit her mother's relatives. There, she became reacquainted with her younger half-sister, Julia, and her older half-brother, Francis, and would miss them when she returned to Vienna. In 1938, the Germans annexed…
Barbara was born to a middle-class Jewish family in southeast Hungary. Her father had a store that carried grocery and hardware items. Barbara had a sister named Margit and a brother named Desider. In 1928 Barbara married Istvan Geroe and moved to the town of Torokszentmiklos. Her son, Janos, was born there a year later. 1933-39: In 1933 Barbara divorced and returned with 3-year-old Janos to her parents' home in the town of Szentes. She helped run her parents' store, which was located on a busy inter-city…
April 1, 1933. On this date, the Nazi Party and its affiliates organized a nationwide boycott of Jewish-owned businesses in Germany.
September 1, 1939. On this date, Germany invaded Poland and initiated World War II in Europe.
November 3, 1943. On this date, SS and police units implemented "Operation Harvest Festival" (also known as Aktion Erntefest).
Sally Pitluk was born to Jewish parents in Płońsk, Poland in 1922. A few days after the German invasion of Poland in 1939, Płońsk was occupied. Sally and her family lived in a ghetto from 1940-1942. In October of 1942, Sally was transported to Auschwitz, where she was tattooed and moved into the subcamp Budy for forced labor. She stayed in the Auschwitz camp complex until the beginning of 1945 when she and other prisoners were death marched to several different camps. She was liberated in 1945 and…
Explore a timeline of the history of the Bergen-Belsen camp in the Nazi camp system. Initially a POW camp, it became a concentration camp in 1943.
Survivors faced huge obstacles in rebuilding their lives after the devastation of the Holocaust years. Learn about some of the challenges they faced.
Explore a timeline of the history of the Flossenbürg camp in the Nazi camp system from its establishment in 1938 until liberation in 1945.
The Germans established the Althammer camp in September 1944. It was a subcamp of Auschwitz. Read more about the camp's history and conditions there.
Leading German physicians and administrators were put on trial for their role during the Holocaust. The resulting Nuremberg Code was a landmark document on medical ethics. Learn more
The Nazi Party was one of a number of right-wing extremist political groups that emerged in Germany following World War I. Learn about the Nazi rise to power.
Anne Frank is among the most well-known of the six million Jews who died in the Holocaust. Discover who Anne Frank was and what happened to her.
The German invasion of Poland in the fall of 1939 triggered WWII. Learn more about key dates and events, causes, and related Holocaust history.
Adolf Hitler came to power with the goal of establishing a new racial order in Europe dominated by the German “master race.” This goal drove Nazi foreign policy. Learn more
In May 1939, the St. Louis set sail from Germany to Cuba. Most of the passengers, fleeing Nazi Germany, were denied entry. Learn more about their fates.
In September 1939, the Germans launched a campaign of terror intended to destroy the Polish nation and culture. Learn more about the German occupation of Poland.
In April 1945, US troops encountered a barn on the outskirts of Gardelegen where the SS and its accomplices had massacred over 1,000 concentration camp prisoners.
After WWII, many Holocaust survivors, unable to return to their homes, lived in displaced persons camps in Germany, Austria, and Italy. Read about Foehrenwald DP camp.
Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel was commander of all German armed forces during World War II. Learn about his military career and postwar trial.
Read an excerpt from Izak Lichtenstein’s 1947 testimony about the resistance movement in the Lachva (Lachwa) ghetto.
Read a summary extract from Eliezer Breslin’s testimony on escaping from the Mir ghetto, given during the WWII war crimes investigation into Semion Serafinowicz.
The German-Soviet Pact paved the way for the joint invasion and occupation of Poland by Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union in September 1939.
During WWII, the Children’s Aid Society (OSE) operated 14 children's homes throughout France to save Jewish children from internment and deportation to killing centers.
Benito Mussolini’s Fascist takeover of Italy was an inspiration and example for Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party in Germany. Learn more.
The Reich Security Main Office (RSHA), created by Heinrich Himmler, brutally coordinated and perpetrated many aspects of the Holocaust.
Young people's diaries capture some of the most heartbreaking experiences of the Holocaust. Learn about the diary and experiences of David Sierakowiak.
The Herzogenbusch concentration camp in the Netherlands began functioning in January 1943. Learn about its establishment, administration, prisoners, and conditions there.
From July 1941-May 1944, the SS camp at Trawniki had several purposes. It is best known as the training site for auxiliary police guards used in Nazi killing centers. Learn more.
The Justice Case, or Jurists’ Trial, of the Subsequent Nuremberg Proceedings tried members of the German justice administration. Browse excerpts from the verdict.
World War II was the largest and most destructive conflict in history. Learn about key WWII dates in this timeline of events, including when WW2 started and ended.
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.
The three principal partners in the Axis alliance were Germany, Italy, and Japan. Learn more about the Axis powers in WW2.
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