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World War II

A truly world war which lasted from 1939 to 1945. The countries of the world aligned with either the Axis powers or the Allies and battled in a total war.
  1. Adolf Hitler
  2. Holocaust
  3. Pearl Harbor (6)
  4. Winston Churchill

World War II Timeline
World War II (WWII) was a long and bloody war that lasted for six years. Officially beginning on September 1, 1939 when Germany invaded Poland, World War II lasted until both the Germans and the Japanese had surrendered to the Allies in 1945. Find out what happened in this timeline of World War II.

World War 2 Timeline
World War 2 (WW2) was a long and bloody war that lasted for six years. Officially beginning on September 1, 1939 when Germany invaded Poland, World War 2 lasted until both the Germans and the Japanese had surrendered to the Allies in 1945. Find out what happened in this timeline of World War 2.

World War II Starts
No one wanted war. Yet, when Germany attacked Poland on September 1, 1939, other European countries felt they had to act. The result was the six long years of World War II. Learn more about what led to Germany's aggression and how other countries reacted.

The Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact
The pact signed in 1939 by Germany and the Soviet Union that enabled a one-front war when Germany started World War II.

Franklin D. Roosevelt
President Franklin D. Roosevelt led the United States during both the Great Depression and World War II. Paralyzed from the waist down after suffering a bout of polio, Roosevelt overcame his disability and was elected president of the United States an unprecedented four times.

Major Battles of World War II
There were numerous battles in World War II. Some of these battles lasted only days while others took months or years. Some of the battles were notable for the material losses such as tanks or aircraft carriers while others were notable for the number of human losses. Although this is not a comprehensive list of all battes of WWII, it is a list of the major battles of World War II.

Battle of Britain
The Battle of Britain was the intense air battle between the Germans and the British over Great Britain's airspace from July 1940 to May 1941, with the heaviest fighting from July to October 1940.

June 6, 1944, also known as D-Day, was the very first day of the massive amphibious Normandy Invasion, which brought thousands of ships, tanks, planes, and troops across the English Channel to create the western front of World War II.

The Atomic Bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
On August 6, 1945, the United States used its massive, atomic weapon against Hiroshima, Japan. This atomic bomb, the equivalent of 20,000 tons of TNT, flattened the city, killing tens of thousands of civilians. While Japan was still trying to comprehend this devastation three days later, the United States struck again, this time, on Nagasaki.

Navajo Code Talkers
Most codes during WWII were broken; yet the Navajo Code Talkers confounded the enemy by talking in a seemingly unbreakable code.

This collection of over 250 posters from World War II shows how the United States encouraged citizens to support the war through enlisting, buying bonds, and working hard at home. Some are funny, some are patriotic, and some seem strange.

The War is Over . . . Please Come Out
Unaware that World War II had ended, Lt. Hiroo Onoda of the Japanese army spent 30 years hiding on the remote Philippine island of Lubang. After years of living in a jungle surviving on coconuts and bananas, Onoda finally surrendered in 1974.

Women and World War II
When men went off to war, roles for women expanded and changed. Learn more about women on the homefront, at new types of jobs, and those that helped the military.

Attack on Pearl Harbor
On the morning of December 7, 1941, the Japanese launched a surprise air attack on the U.S. Naval Base at Pearl Harbor. After just two hours of bombing, more than 2,400 Americans were dead, 21 ships had either been sunk or damaged, and more than 188 U.S. aircraft destroyed. Find out more about the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Avalon Project: World War II Documents
This wonderful site provides hundreds of historic documents about World War II, including a collection from the U.S. declaration of war on Japan, Germany, and Italy.

Homefront Encyclopedia
More of a glossary than an encyclopedia - this site offers basic definitions of over 150 WWII terms.

People at War
This fantastic online exhibition from the U.S. National Archives & Records Administration provides glimpses of a variety of individuals and their contributions to the war effort.

Private Art: Letters To and From Home
An extensive collection of letters to and from an American soldier overseas - an amazing look at daily life on the battlefield and at home. The only negative aspect is that the letters need to be read in a small, pop-up window that makes it difficult to navigate.

Rutgers Oral History Archive of World War II
Over 100 complete oral history interviews to record the personal experiences of the men and women who served on the home front and overseas.

D-Day Pictures
A large compilation of pictures of D-Day, including preparation, crossing the English Channel, landing on the beaches at Normandy, and casualties.

The Bataan Death March
On April 9, 1942, the Battle of Bataan ended with the surrender of 72,000 American and Filipino soldiers to the Japanese. The attempt to transfer these POWs resulted in the bloody Bataan Death March. Learn more about the Bataan Death March.

World War II in Europe Timeline
A basic timeline of the years leading up to and through World War II.

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