Under Adolf Hitler's leadership, the Nazi regime was responsible for the mass murder of 6 million Jews and millions of other victims. Learn about Hitler in the years 1930-1933.
Germany started World War II in Europe on September 1, 1939, by invading Poland. War would continue until 1945. Learn more about WWII and genocide in Europe.
Johanna was born in Vienna when it was still the capital of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Her Christian family experienced the disruption resulting from the empire's collapse, as well as the instability of the Austrian republic. The depression of 1929 hit Vienna especially hard. In 1931 Johanna became a Jehovah's Witness. 1933-39: Johanna traveled constantly in and out of Austria distributing our Jehovah's Witness literature. In March 1938 Germany annexed Austria and her family was subjected to Nazi law;…
Trials of top surviving German leaders for Nazi Germany’s crimes began in Nuremberg after World War II. Read about the Nuremberg trials.
Delegates of 32 countries assembled at the Royal Hotel in Evian, France, from July 6 to 15, 1938, to discuss the problem of Jewish refugees. The refugees were desperate to flee Nazi persecution in Germany, but could not leave without having permission to settle in other countries. The Evian Conference resulted in almost no change in the immigration policies of most of the attending nations. The major powers--the United States, Great Britain, and France--opposed unrestricted immigration, making it clear…
Transit visa in a passport issued to Setty Sondheimer, a German citizen. This visa, issued on August 6, 1940, enabled her to travel through Japan en route to Surinam, Curacao, or other Dutch colonies in the Americas. These plans were disrupted when travel across the Pacific Ocean was forbidden following U.S. entry into World War II. Setty remained in Japan until she was able to emigrate to the United States in 1947. [From the USHMM special exhibition Flight and Rescue.]
Polish citizenship certificate issued to Samuel Solc on December 16, 1939, by the Britannic Majesty's Legation in Kovno, charged with representing Polish interests in Lithuania. Samuel decided to emigrate to Palestine in late 1939. His journey lasted over two years and took him through eight countries. Samuel arrived in Palestine on February 6, 1942, after stays in Lithuania; Kobe, Japan; Shanghai, China; and Bombay, India. [From the USHMM special exhibition Flight and Rescue.]
This page of a Polish citizenship certificate issued to Samuel Solc contains two visas. The first (left), stamped by the British Passport control in Shanghai, allowed Samuel to travel to Palestine via Burma, India, Egypt, and Rangoon. The second visa (right) bears the British Mandate "Government of Palestine" stamp, dated February 6, 1942, and allowed Samuel to remain in Palestine permanently. [From the USHMM special exhibition Flight and Rescue.]
July 6-15, 1938. On this date, delegates from 32 countries attended the Evian Conference in France to discuss the growing refugee crisis.
Read a series of articles about Adolf Hitler's ideology and strategies. Under Hitler, the Nazi regime was responsible for the mass murder of 6 million Jews and millions of other victims
June 6, 1991, photograph showing Amalie and Norman Salsitz with a copy of their book, Against All Odds. With the end of World War II and collapse of the Nazi regime, survivors of the Holocaust faced the daunting task of rebuilding their lives. With little in the way of financial resources and few, if any, surviving family members, most eventually emigrated from Europe to start their lives again. Between 1945 and 1952, more than 80,000 Holocaust survivors immigrated to the United States. Norman was one of…
Dated June 6, 1944, this US Twelfth Army Group situation map shows the presumed locations of Allied and Axis forces on D-Day, when Allied troops landed on the beaches of Normandy. Drafted during the war, the content in this historical map reflects the information that operational commander, General Omar N. Bradley, would have had on hand at the time.
A US soldier stands among the corpses of prisoners exhumed from a mass grave in a ravine near Nammering. On April 19, 1945, a freight train with nearly 4,500 prisoners from Buchenwald pulled onto the railroad siding at Nammering. Hundreds of prisoners who had died on the train were buried in the mass grave along with the prisoners who were forced to carry the corpses to the ravine and were then shot. Germany, ca. May 6, 1945.
Coffins containing bodies of Jews killed in the Kielce pogrom. Poland, July 6, 1946. The mass violence of the Kielce pogrom drew on an entrenched local history of antisemitism–especially false allegations accusing Jews of using the blood of Christian children for ritual purposes (a charge known as a “blood libel”)–with the intent of discouraging the return of Jewish Holocaust survivors to Poland.
After WWII, many Holocaust survivors, unable to return to their homes, lived in displaced persons camps in Germany, Austria, and Italy. Read about Babenhausen DP camp.
“Fire Oaths” were statements that declared why the works of certain authors were thrown into the flames during the 1933 burning of books under the Nazi regime.
The 4th Infantry Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating the Haunstetten subcamp of Dachau.
The 95th Infantry Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating Werl, a prison and civilian labor camp, in 1945.
The 103rd Infantry Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating a subcamp of Kaufering in 1945.
The 3rd Armored Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating the Dora-Mittelbau concentration camp in 1945.
The 29th Infantry Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating Dinslaken, a civilian labor camp, in 1945.
Army Signal Corps photographer Arnold E. Samuelson documented Allied military campaigns, Nazi crimes, and the plight of concentration camp prisoners.
American military tribunals presided over 12 Subsequent Nuremberg Proceedings against leading German industrialists, military figures, SS perpetrators, and others.
Diaries bear witness to some of the most heartbreaking experiences of the Holocaust. Read excerpts from the diary of an anonymous child in the Lodz ghetto.
The Jewish Brigade Group of the British army was formally established in September 1944. It included more than 5,000 Jewish volunteers from Mandatory Palestine.
The Nazis occupied Zdziecioł (Zhetel), Poland in 1941. Learn more about the city and ghetto during World War II.
In 1939, the Nazis established the Mannschafts-Stammlager (Stalag) IX B camp in Germany. Learn more about the camp’s history, prisoners, and liberation.
Allied air superiority over Germany was a decisive factor in the success of the D-Day (June 6, 1944) landings in France. This footage shows the Allied bombing of suspected German positions during the battle. Allied air attacks both supported Allied ground operations in Normandy and prevented German reinforcements from reaching the area. The Allies would liberate most of France by the end of August 1944.
Thomas (left), 6 months after liberation, with a soldier who realized that Thomas was Jewish and took him to an orphanage, ca. 1945. Thomas was eventually reunited with his mother. With the end of World War II and collapse of the Nazi regime, survivors of the Holocaust faced the daunting task of rebuilding their lives. With little in the way of financial resources and few, if any, surviving family members, most eventually emigrated from Europe to start their lives again. Between 1945 and 1952, more than…
Selected Features 1. Camp Commandant's House 2. Main Guard House 3. Camp Administrative Office 4. Gestapo 5. Reception Building/Prisoner Registration 6. Kitchen 7. Gas Chamber and Crematorium 8. Storage Buildings and Workshops 9. Storage of Confiscated Belongings 10. Gravel Pit: Execution Site 11. Camp Orchestra Site 12. "Black Wall" Execution Site 13. Block 11: Punishment Bunker 14. Block 10: Medical Experiments 15. Gallows 16. Block Commander's Barracks 17. SS Hospital
The Holocaust (1933–1945) was the systematic, state-sponsored persecution and murder of six million European Jews by the Nazi German regime and its allies and collaborators. The Holocaust era began in January 1933 when Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party came to power in Germany. It ended in May 1945, when the Allied Powers defeated Nazi Germany in World War II. The Holocaust was a German initiative that took place throughout German- and Axis-controlled Europe. It affected nearly all of Europe’s Jewish…
Explore a timeline of key events in Nazi Germany during 1936.
Read the Jewish Partisan Educational Foundation's short biography of Norman Salsitz.
In 1939, the French government established the Gurs camp. Learn more about the history of the camp before and after the German invasion of France.
The 1st Infantry Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating two subcamps of Flossenbürg in 1945.
The 4th Armored Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating the Ohrdruf subcamp of Buchenwald in 1945.
The 8th Infantry Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating the Wöbbelin subcamp of Neuengamme in 1945.
The 101st Airborne participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating the Kaufering subcamp of Dachau in 1945.
The 104th Infantry Division participated in major WWII campaigns and is recognized for liberating the Dora-Mittelbau concentration camp in 1945.
Reidar was the third of four sons born to religious Lutheran parents in a small seafaring and whaling town along the Norwegian coast. Reidar's father was a civil servant. Reidar attended public school and dreamed of becoming a musician. 1933-39: Although Reidar was not interested in politics, he sympathized with his Jewish neighbors who had come as refugees from Germany. In fall 1939 he was saddened when Germany attacked Poland and the USSR attacked Finland. Several days later, his oldest brother passed…
Bela's city of Bratislava, located on the banks of the Danube river, had an old and important Jewish community. Bela was the eighth child in his large Jewish family. His father was a furrier. At age 16 Bela began working as a salesman for a textile business. In 1930 he was called up for 18 months of army service. 1933-39: Bela and his wife moved to the Slovakian city of Zilina. Their son was born in November 1937. Bela worked for a German photographic company until 1938, when he lost his job because he…
Explore key dates in the history of the Theresienstadt camp/ghetto, which served multiple purposes during its existence from 1941-45.
World War II lasted from 1939 to 1945, when the Allies defeated the Axis powers. Learn about key invasions and events during WWII, also known as the Second World War.
The experiences of World War I and its aftermath would profoundly shape the attitudes and actions of leaders and ordinary people during the Holocaust.
Explore a timeline of key events in the history of the Auschwitz camp complex in German-occupied Poland.
Learn about some key dates in the life of Adolf Hitler, one of Europe's most ruthless dictators, who led the Nazis from 1921 and Germany from 1933-45.
The Grafeneck T4 Center was the first centralized killing center to be established by German authorities within the context of the Nazi “euthanasia,” or T4, program.
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.
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.
Many different kinds of railway cars were used for deportations. They varied in size and weight. The railway car on display in the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum's Permanent Exhibition is of just one type used. The dimensions of the railway car in the Museum's exhibition are as follows: Total length 31 feet 6 inches (9.6 meters); interior space for deportees 26 feet 2 inches (8 meters). Total height 14 feet (4.3 meters) from the bottom of the wheel to the highest point of the car; interior space…
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