2 May 1916

  • Kenkichi Ueda was promoted to the rank of lieutenant colonel. [Main Article | CPC]
2 May 1918
  • The Supreme War Council proposed that those Czech Legion units that have not yet made their way to Vladivostok, Russia should instead turn northwards to link up with the Allied forces from Archangel to establish a new eastern front line. The proposal was put to the Bolshevik authorities in Moscow by the French Military Mission and after some discussion Trotsky gave his consent. [AC]
2 May 1920

Photo(s) dated 2 May 1920
Submarine tender USS Camden with six R-class submarines, New York, New York, United States, 2 May 1920
2 May 1924

United States
  • A Douglas DT-2 torpedo bomber was launched from the carrier USS Langley, while the ship was at anchor in Pensacola Bay, Florida, United States. [Main Article | AC]
2 May 1925

United States
  • Douglas MacArthur returned to the United States from the Philippine Islands to take command of the IV Corps Area based at Fort McPherson, Atlanta, Georgia. [Main Article | CPC]
2 May 1927
  • Ira Eaker completed the 35,200 km Pan American Goodwill Flight around South America, winning the one of the Mackay Trophies. [Main Article | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 2 May 1927
Aerial photo of battleship Colorado in a harbor, 2 May 1927; note three large and five small harbor tugs nearby
2 May 1929

United States
  • Benjamin Kelsey was promoted to the rank of second lieutenant. [Main Article | CPC]
2 May 1932
  • USS S-31 departed Manila, Luzon, Philippine Islands for Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii. [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS S-35 departed the Philippine Islands for Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii to join the Pacific Fleet. [Main Article | CPC]
2 May 1933
  • Hitler's Government dissolved the main Trade Union association, The German Free Trade Unions, occupied all its offices with the help of the SA and sequestrated its funds. [AC]
United States
  • Franklin Roosevelt established the Agricultural Adjustment Administration, which closely managed agricultural production in the United States, which included the policy of destroying excess farm supply to control prices. [Main Article | CPC]
2 May 1935
  • With the announcement that Germany was rearming, and the failure of a French plan to create an alliance of Germany, Poland and the Soviet Union, France concluded a separate alliance with the Soviet Union. [AC]
  • Aging Australian cruiser HMAS Brisbane was recommissioned for the purpose of transferring a crew to Britain for operating the future cruiser HMAS Sydney (currently HMS Phaeton). Brisbane departed for Britain later on this day. [Main Article | CPC]
2 May 1936

French Somaliland
  • Exhausted and heartbroken the Emperor Haile Selassie of Abyssinia (now Ethiopia) travelled by train to Djibouti in French Somaliland where he boarded the British cruiser HMS Enterprise to sail into exile. [Main Article | Event | AC]
2 May 1937

  • Prince Nagahisa's son Prince Michihisa was born. [Main Article | CPC]
2 May 1939

  • Chinese troops launched a second counterattack on Nanchang, Jiangxi Province, China, but all conquered positions would be retaken by the Japanese by the end of the day. [Main Article | CPC]
Panama Canal Zone
  • USS Enterprise departed the Panama Canal Zone for California, United States. [Main Article | CPC]
United States
  • Benjamin Kelsey was promoted to the rank of captain. [Main Article | CPC]
2 May 1940
  • German forces reached Aandalesnes, Norway. In southern Norway, British troops began to withdraw, but continued to fight in the north to interrupt the flow of iron to Germany. British Vice Admiral John Cunningham arrived in Namsos, Norway with 3 cruisers, 5 destroyers, and 3 transports to aid with the evacuation of the British 146th Brigade; German aircraft attempted to interfere, damaging HMS Maori with a near miss, killing 5 and wounding 18; through the end of the night, 5,350 men were embarked. [Main Article | TH]
  • Mussolini offered that Italy would not go to war with the United States if the United States would stay out of Europe. [CPC]
  • 93 German combat divisions prepared to invade France and the Low Countries. [Main Article | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 2 May 1940
Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard and Ford Island Naval Air Station, Oahu, Hawaii, May 2, 1940.
2 May 1941
  • Sandstorms at Tobruk, Libya limited the offensive capabilities of German tanks on this date. 100 kilometers to the west, British gunboat HMS Ladybird bombarded Axis positions at Derna. [Main Article | CPC]
  • British ship Parracombe, with 21 crated Hurricane fighters on board for Malta, hit a mine and sank off Cape Bon, Tunisia. [CPC]
  • At 0500 hours, during Muslim morning prayers, 33 British aircraft from RAF Habbaniya and 8 Wellington bombers from RAF Shaibah attacked the Iraqi artillery positions which had been threatening RAF Habbaniya for the past two days. Iraq troops responded by shelling RAF Habbaniya, killing 13 and wounding 29. Elsewhere, RAF aircraft attacked the Rashid airfield near Baghdad, Iraq, destroying 22 aircraft on the ground. The RAF lost 5 aircraft in Iraq on this date. [Main Article | CPC]
  • After sundown, German bombers attacked Liverpool, England, United Kingdom for the second consecutive night. [Main Article | CPC]
  • British minesweeping trawler HMT Alberic and destroyer HMS St. Albans collided in Pentland Firth between the Orkney Islands and Britain. HMT Alberic sank with the loss of 13 crew. The HMS St. Albans sailed to Southampton, England, United Kingdom for repairs to her bow. [CPC]
  • British aircraft sank German anti-submarine trawler Vp 808 off the island of Borkum near the Dutch-German border. [CPC]
  • British destroyer HMS Jersey hit a mine and sank off Grand Harbour, Malta, killing 35 and wounding 48. [CPC]
  • A German memorandum noted that the plan to remove large quantities of food out of Eastern Europe to feed German civilians and military personnel would likely result in the starvation of millions of Eastern Europeans especially through the winter. The plan would continue to be implemented, however. [CPC]
  • Hans-Joachim Marseille was promoted to the rank of Unteroffizier while stationed in Libya. [Main Article | CPC]
United States
  • The British Royal Navy commissioned convoy escort ship HMS Lulworth, a former US Coast Guard Cutter, into service at New York, United States. She was manned by former crew members of battleship HMS Resolution, which was under repair in the US at the time. [CPC]
2 May 1942
  • USS Drum sank Japanese seaplane carrier Mizuho 90 miles southeast of Tokyo, Japan at 0416 hours; 101 were killed, 472 survived. [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS Trout sank Japanese freighter Uzan Maru 134 miles southwest of Tokyo, Japan. [Main Article | CPC]
  • Already-damaged HMS Edinburgh, carrying £5,000,000 worth of Soviet gold meant as down payment for US weapons and other war supplies, was spotted by German destroyers Z7 Hermann Schoemann, Z24, and Z25 at 0630 hours. In the ensuing engagement, Edinburgh hit Z7 while destroyer HMS Forester was hit by Z7's torpedo and destroyer HMS Foresight was hit by shellfire. Z7 would be scuttled at 0830 hours. HMS Edinburgh suffered a torpedo hit which killed 57. Now structurally unsound, she was scuttled by HMS Harrier and HMS Foresight at 0900 hours. The gold also went to the bottom of the Barents Sea. [Main Article | CPC]
  • Roosevelt extended the Lend-Lease Act to include Iraq and Iran. [CPC]
  • Goebbels noted in his diary that the term "Baedecker attacks", named after a popular travel guide and used here to suggest that the German bombers targeted British cultural centers, should be banned by his propaganda ministry. [Main Article | CPC]
  • German submarine U-573, seriously damaged by aerial depth charges from a British Hudson aircraft on the previous day, arrived at Cartagena, Spain. The submarine and her crew were interned by the Spanish authorities. [CPC]
  • German submarine U-74, dispatched to rescue the damaged submarine U-573, was attacked and sunk by British destroyers HMS Wishart and HMS Wrestler 60 miles southeast of Cartagena, Spain; all 47 aboard were killed. [CPC]
  • British destroyer HMS St Albans and minesweeper HMS Seagull, while escorting Allied convoy PQ-15, attacked an ASDIC contact 200 miles northwest of Tromsø, Norway at 1950 hours. As the target surfaced, she turned out to be Polish submarine Jastrzab, which suffered serious damage and 5 killed. The submarine was written off and scuttled shortly after the 35 survivors were taken off. On the same day, German torpedo bombers attacked PQ-15, sinking freighters Cape Corso, Jutland, and Botavon. [Main Article | CPC]
Atlantic Ocean
  • German submarine U-402 sank US armed yacht Cythera 115 miles east of Cape Fear, North Carolina, United States, killing 69 of 71 aboard; the two survivors were captured by U-402 and taken to Germany as prisoners of war. During the day, the 36 survivors of Norwegian ship Bidevind, sunk by German submarine U-752 on the previous day off New York, United States, reached the US Coast Guard station near Toms River, New Jersey, United States by lifeboat. After sundown, at 2253 hours, U-66 sank Norwegian tanker Sandar 40 miles north of Trinidad; 3 were killed, 34 survived. [Main Article | CPC]
Australian New Guinea
  • 7 B-26 Marauder bombers from Port Moresby, Australian Papua attacked Rabaul, New Britain, causing little damage. [CPC]
Australian Papua
  • Japanese bombers attacked Seven Mile airfield near Port Moresby, Australian Papua. [CPC]
  • Japanese aircraft attacked Port Moresby, Australian Papua. [Main Article | CPC]
British Western Pacific Territories
  • The Japanese launched another aerial bombardment against the Australian seaplane base at Tulagi, Solomon Islands. Deducing that an invasion of coming soon, the Australian personnel evacuated the base after sundown. [Main Article | CPC]
  • 1st Burma Division unsuccessfully attacked Japanese 33rd Infantry Division at Monywa, Burma on the Chindwin River. [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS Pollack departed Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii for her third war patrol. [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
  • USS Flying Fish arrived at Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii. [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
  • Joseph Rochefort's cryptanalytic team in Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii intercepted a radio message from Nobutake Kondo's chief of staff regarding the formation of task forces for an offensive operation. [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
  • Destroyer Yukikaze arrived at Kure, Japan. [Main Article | CPC]
  • The powder magazine of gun battery Geary on Corregidor in the Philippine Islands was hit by Japanese artillery at 1627 hours, detonating 1,600 62-pound powder bags; 56 were killed and hundreds were wounded. To the east, in Manila Bay, river gunboat USS Mindanao was scuttled to prevent capture. [Main Article | AC, CPC]
  • Italian Navy units began arriving at Constanta, Romania where they prepared to cross the Black Sea to Yalta, Ukraine. [CPC]
  • The BI-1 rocket-powered prototype aircraft successfully underwent a low-power test at Sverdlovsk (now Yekaterinburg), Sverdlovsk Oblast, Russia, lifting the aircraft about one meter off the ground. [Main Article | CPC]
Taiwan United Kingdom
  • Dr. H. V. Evatt, the Australian representative to the British War Cabinet and the Pacific War Council arrived in the United Kingdom. [Main Article | AC]
United States
  • Sunfish was launched at Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, California, United States, sponsored by Mrs. J. W. Fowler. [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
US Pacific Islands
  • Chester Nimitz inspected defenses on Sand Island and Eastern Island of Midway Atoll. [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 2 May 1942
Japanese-American children awaiting for a bus that would take them to an Assembly Center, Byron, California, United States, 2 May 1942Stern of Sunfish, Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, California, United States, 2 May 1942Sunfish preparing for launch, Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, California, United States, 2 May 1942Launching of submarine Sunfish, Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, California, United States, 2 May 1942
See all photos dated 2 May 1942
2 May 1943
  • USS Skipjack attacked a Japanese transport in the Pacific Ocean; all four torpedoes missed. [Main Article | CPC]
  • Japanese hospital ship Hikawa Maru departed Rabaul, New Britain. [Main Article | Tabular Record of Movement | CPC]
  • USS Gar reported sinking a Japanese ship in daylight with her deck gun. [Main Article | CPC]
  • Viktor Lutze, head of the SA, was killed by partisans; he was succeeded by Wilhelm Scheppmann. The cause of death was officially stated as an automobile accident. [TH]
  • Japanese aircraft conducted a raid on Darwin, Australia. [CPC]
  • The RAF Bomber Command reported to the British Air Ministry that it currently had 725 ready crews for operations; the number included 129 crews of Wellington bombers and 250 crews for Lancaster bombers. [Main Article | CPC]
  • The Japanese Southeast Detached Force was established for the defense of the Solomon Islands, with its base in Rabaul. [CPC]
  • Franklin Roosevelt informed George Marshall that he was going to approve the supplies Chiang Kaishek requested without any caveats, which included 500 planes and 10,000 tons of supplies to be delivered over the Hump. [Main Article | Event | CPC]
  • The British Admiralty was officially announced the loss of destroyer HMS Beverley, sunk on 11 Apr 1943 while escorting Allied convoy ON-176. [AC]
Photo(s) dated 2 May 1943
USS S-35 at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Bremerton, Washington, United States, 2 May 1943, photo 1 of 2USS S-35 at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Bremerton, Washington, United States, 2 May 1943, photo 2 of 2SBD-3 Dauntless, F4F-4 Wildcat, and TBF-1 Avenger aircraft aboard USS Enterprise, northeast of Nouméa, New Caledonia, 2 May 1943; note USS Washington in backgroundIndianapolis off Mare Island Navy Yard, California, 2 May 1943, photo 1 of 2
See all photos dated 2 May 1943
2 May 1944
  • 54-year-old Leonard Dawe, a teacher, compiled a cross-puzzle which was published in the Daily Telegraph on this date. He was put under MI5 investigation as the crossword puzzle contained the code names of the American landing beaches in Normandy, France. [Main Article | CPC]
  • Barbers Point Naval Air Station: First mention made of Night Combat Training Unit. [Main Article | DS]
Japan Pacific Ocean
  • USS Whale made rendezvous with destroyer escort USS Fair. [Main Article | CPC]
  • Two transports arrived at the Auschwitz Concentration Camp with 1,800 Jews from Budapest, Hungary and 2,000 from Topolya, Yugoslavia. 1,102 were registered into the camp, and the remaining 2,698 were sent to the gas chambers. [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
United States
  • Floating drydock USS ABSD-2 departed California, United States in 10 separate sections. [Main Article | CPC]
2 May 1945
  • U-977 departed Kristiansand, Norway on her first and only war patrol. [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS Baya fired six torpedoes at a Japanese vessel in the Gulf of Siam; all torpedoes missed. [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS Hawkbill fired three torpedoes into Japanese minelayer Hatsutaka, which she had damaged on the previous day, sinking her. [Main Article | CPC]
  • USS Trepang surfaced to shell a sampan, but later called off the attack and allowed the boat to leave. [Main Article | CPC]
  • Wilhelm Burgdorf passed away. [Main Article | CPC]
  • British Second Army reached Lübeck, Germany. [TH]
  • Commandant Rahm of the Theresienstadt Concentration Camp relinquished control of the camp to the International Red Cross. [Main Article | CPC]
  • Ann Baumgartner married Major William Carl and adopted her husband's last name. [Main Article | CPC]
  • British Field Marshal Harold Alexander accepted the surrender of the Axis forces in Southern Europe. Over 1,000,000 men in northern Italy and Austria laid down their arms. [Main Article | CPC]
  • The US coastal minesweeper YMS-481 was sunk by Japanese shore batteries off Tarakan, Borneo. [AC]
  • Soviet SMERSH operatives captured Hans Fritzsche. [CPC]
  • A group of prominent prisoners of war were transferred from the camp at Laufen in southern Germany to a camp at Markt Pongau near Salzburg in occupied Austria, where they would be treated respectfully by SS-Obergruppenführer Gottlob Berger who wished to curry favor as the war was coming to an end. [CPC]
  • In Burma, Indian 26th Division and Indian 17th Division continued their competition to be the first division to reach Rangoon. The 26th Division made an amphibious landing near the city, while the 17th Division secured Pegu. The first individual to enter Rangoon, however, was an RAF officer who landed on a nearby airstrip on this date. He walked into the city and, having assured himself that the Japanese had really gone, sailed down the river in a commandeered sampan to meet the troops advancing from the south. [Main Article | AC, CPC]
  • The Japanese-sponsored puppet state Manchukuo issued its last postage stamps. [CPC]
  • General Helmuth Weidling accepted General Vasily Chuikov's terms of unconditional surrender; the surrender of the Berlin garrison in Germany was to be effective at 1500 hours. [Main Article | TH]
  • Werhner von Braun departed Haus Ingeborg in Oberjoch in the Allgäu mountains in southern Germany for Austria; his group ran into American troops after passing through Adolf-Hitler-Pass (now Oberjoch Pass). [Main Article | CPC]
  • Soviet troops captured Rechlin-Lärz Airfield in Rechlin, Mecklenburg, Germany, a Luftwaffe test site. [CPC]
  • Soviet SMERSH agents captured German SS-Gruppenführer Johann Rattenhuber, Rear Admiral Hans-Erich Voß, General of Artillery Helmuth Weidling, and SS General Wilhelm Mohnke in Berlin, Germany. [Main Article | CPC]
  • The Soviet Hammer and Sickle flag was hoisted atop the Reichstag building in Berlin, Germany. [Main Article | Facility | TH]
  • Walter Dornberger departed Haus Ingeborg in Oberjoch in the Allgäu mountains in southern Germany for Austria; his group ran into American troops after passing through Adolf-Hitler-Pass (now Oberjoch Pass). [Main Article | CPC]
  • Werner Haase was captured by Soviet troops in Berlin, Germany. [Main Article | Event | CPC]
  • Air Group 87 arrived aboard USS Ticonderoga at Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii. [Main Article | Facility | DS]
Japan Netherlands
  • German forces allowed the passage of convoys carrying relief supplies to civilians in occupied Netherlands. On the same day, 400 American B-17 bombers dropped food and other supplies over the Netherlands. [Main Article | TH]
Pacific Ocean
  • USS Springer attacked a Japanese transport and two escort ships, sinking Japanese frigate Ojika in the Yellow Sea, hitting her with 3 of 4 torpedoes. [Main Article | CPC]
  • The Soviet GKO created the positions of Deputy Front Commanders in Charge of the Management of Civil Affairs. The first holders of these positions were Soviet counterintelligence leaders Ivan Serov, Lavrentiy Tsavana, and Pavel Meshik. [CPC]
  • USS Pompon attacked a small Japanese boat off Taiwan with her deck gun; the boat escaped without damage. [Main Article | CPC]
United Kingdom
  • British government announced that London, England, United Kingdom was now a "Go Home" area, ending the nearly six-year evacuation. [CPC]
  • In a report to the House of Commons the British Prime Minister Winston Churchill announced the unconditional surrender of the German land, sea and air forces, commanded by Colonel-General Heinrich von Wietinghof-Scheel, Commander-in Chief South-West Command and Commander-in Chief of Army Group C. The instrument of surrender signed at the Allied Forces Headquarters at Caserta on Sunday afternoon, 29 Apr 1945, by two German plenipotentiaries and Lieutenant-General W. D. Morgan, Chief of Staff at Allied Forces Headquarters would see the surrender of all German forces in Northern Italy to the Isonzo River, in the North-East, and the Austrian provinces of Salzburg, Vorarlberg, anf the Tyrol plus portions of Carinthia and Styria, Hostilities would end at 12 o'clock GMT on Wednesday, 2 May 1945. [Main Article | Event | AC]
Photo(s) dated 2 May 1945
HitlerGerman General Helmuth Weidling and other German generals in captivity, Berlin, Germany, 2 May 1945Captured Soviet BM-31-12 Katyusha rocket launcher on Studebaker US6 chassis in Berlin, Germany, 2 May 1945Red Army soldier Mikhail Alekseevich Yegorov of Soviet 756 Rifle Regiment flying the Soviet flag over the Reichstag, Berlin, Germany, 2 May 1945, photo 1 of 2
See all photos dated 2 May 1945
2 May 1946
  • Lansdowne was decommissioned from service. [Main Article | CPC]
  • Bailey was decommissioned from service. [Main Article | CPC]
United States
  • Benjamin Kelsey was promoted to the rank of major. [Main Article | CPC]
2 May 1955
2 May 1969
2 May 1982

Photo(s) dated 2 May 1982
Argentine cruiser General Belgrano sinking after being torpedoed by HMS Conqueror, off Falkland Islands, 2 May 1982
2 May 2007

  • The Investigative Commission on Pro-Japanese Collaborators' Property, an official Korean government body, announced a plan to seize land assets from descendents of nine Koreans who obtained the land from the Japanese occupation government through their collaboration. These assets amounted to 3,600,000,000 Won (about US$3,900,000). [CPC]

Timeline Section Founder: Thomas Houlihan
Contributors: Alan Chanter, C. Peter Chen, Thomas Houlihan, David Stubblebine
Special Thanks: Rory Curtis

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Lieutenant General Oliver Leese, General Harold Alexander, and Lieutenant General Mark Clark, Italy, 1944

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"With Germany arming at breakneck speed, England lost in a pacifist dream, France corrupt and torn by dissension, America remote and indifferent... do you not tremble for your children?"

Winston Churchill, 1935