7 Dec 1888
7 Dec 1892
  • Eleanor Roosevelt lost her mother to diphtheria. ww2dbase [Eleanor Roosevelt | CPC]
7 Dec 1907

  • Henry Arnold arrived in Manila, Philippine Islands. ww2dbase [Henry Arnold | Manila | CPC]
7 Dec 1917
  • The British War Cabinet met to discuss growing reports of prevailing chaos in Siberia, Russia. Agreement was reached that the most effective way of restoring order would be if the Japanese were to intervene. The Japanese however proved to be reluctant to commit themselves without American backing although they were prepared to protect Japanese interests in Vladivostok. ww2dbase [AC]
7 Dec 1920

  • The Luftwaffe fighter ace Walter Nowotny was born in GmĂĽnd, Austria. The youngest of three sons of an Austrian railway official, during the war he would be credited with no less than 258 aerial victories and commanded the world's first jet fighter wing. ww2dbase [GmĂĽnd | AC]
7 Dec 1926

  • Hironobu was made a marquis. ww2dbase [Hironobu | CPC]
7 Dec 1929
  • Kamoi was placed under the command of a new captain. ww2dbase [Kamoi | CPC]
7 Dec 1932
  • Adolf Hitler and Gregor Strasser again argued over whether Nazi Party should work with the new German Chancellor Kurt von Schleicher. Reaching no agreement, Hitler would soon purge Strasser and his supporters from the party to consolidate Hitler's position. ww2dbase [Adolf Hitler | CPC]
  • Albatros was decommissioned from service; Grief took over as the flagship of the 4th Torpedo Boat Half-Flotilla. ww2dbase [Greif | Albatros | CPC]
7 Dec 1935

  • Kong Xiangxi stepped down as the acting head of the Executive Yuan. ww2dbase [Kong Xiangxi | CPC]
7 Dec 1937
  • USS S-31 was decommissioned from service and placed in reserve at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. ww2dbase [S-31 | CPC]
  • Chiang Kaishek departed Nanjing, China by plane. The civilian administration of the city was left to an International Committee led by John Rabe. Outside the city, several villages were set ablaze by Chinese troops to prevent them from being used by the approaching Japanese troops. ww2dbase [Battle of Nanjing and the Rape of Nanjing | Chiang Kaishek | Nanjing | CPC]
  • Iwane Matsui suffered a bout of tuberculosis while in China. Nevertheless, he ordered the siege of Nanjing, China. ww2dbase [Battle of Nanjing and the Rape of Nanjing | Iwane Matsui | CPC]
  • Luo Yingde served as one of the fighter escorts for Chiang Kaishek's aircraft, which evacuated the Chinese leader from the capital of Nanjing, China to Hankou. ww2dbase [Luo Yingde | Nanjing | CPC]
7 Dec 1939
  • England and France pledged support to Finland, but an inability to follow through left the promises rather empty. ww2dbase [TH]
  • Soviet 9th Army attacked in central Karelia, Finland. ww2dbase [The Winter War | TH]
Atlantic Ocean
  • U-23 fired a torpedo at Danish ship Scotia, sailing in ballast, in the North Sea at 2326 hours. The submarine would continue to pursue into the next day. ww2dbase [U-23 | North Sea | CPC]
  • Italy publicly reaffirmed neutrality in the war. ww2dbase [TH]
7 Dec 1940
  • Admiral Hipper departed Kiel, Germany for an anti-shipping sortie in the Atlantic. ww2dbase [Admiral Hipper | TH]
  • Battleship Bismarck entered the Kiel Canal. ww2dbase [Bismarck | CPC]
  • Orion and Komet sank the ship Vinni off Nauru; shortly after, Komet sank the ship Komata. ww2dbase [Orion | CPC]
  • The Fairey Barracuda dive bomber took its first flight. ww2dbase [Barracuda | AC]
  • The 100th Beaufighter aircraft rolled off the production line at Filton, South Gloucestershire, England, United Kingdom. ww2dbase [Beaufighter | AC]
7 Dec 1941
  • At about midnight at the very beginning of the day, Tatsuta Maru was ordered to reverse course. ww2dbase [Tatsuta Maru | CPC]
  • Fusata Iida passed away. ww2dbase [Fusata Iida | CPC]
  • Naoji Iwasa passed away. ww2dbase [Naoji Iwasa | CPC]
  • Erwin Rommel ordered his forces to pull back by about 10 miles toward the Gazala Line, abandoning the Tobruk objective. ww2dbase [Operation Crusader | CPC]
  • American steam-powered schooner Cynthia Olson, under charter of the US Army, was shelled and sunk by Japanese submarine I-26 with no survivors; two US Army personnel were on board. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Japanese troops invaded Khota Baru, Malaya, two hours before the attack on Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii. A series of landings in nearby Thailand initially met stiff resistance, but the Thai government negotiated for an armistice within hours. ww2dbase [Invasion of Malaya and Singapore | CPC]
  • Japanese aircraft bombarded Singapore, Guam, and Wake, while two Japanese destroyers shelled Midway Atoll, causing 14 casualties and damaging much equipment. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Hitler published his notorious Nacht und Nebel (Night and Fog) decree which allows the Gestapo to dispose of their prisoners without trace. ww2dbase [TH]
  • After suffering a heart attack, Walther von Brauchitsch tendered his resignation. ww2dbase [Walther von Brauchitsch | TH]
  • The office of the US Navy Chief of Naval Operations ordered unrestricted air and submarine warfare against Japan. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • USS Arizona received two bomb hits during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii. The second bomb hit led to the detonation of her forward ammunition magazine, which led to her sinking. 1,177 were killed, including Battleship Division 1 commanding officer Rear Admiral Isaac Kidd and her commanding officer Captain Franklin Van Valkenburgh. ww2dbase [Arizona | CPC]
  • Isaac Kidd became the first US Navy flag officer to be killed in action during WW2. ww2dbase [Isaac Kidd | CPC]
  • Mitsuo Fuchida led the Pearl Harbor attack, remaining over the target area throughout both waves of attacks to observe the degree of damage done to the American fleet. ww2dbase [Mitsuo Fuchida | CPC]
  • The commanding officer of the US Marine Corps 7th Defense Battalion at American Samoa ordered his troops to man their positions as he was informed of the attacks on American positions across the Pacific Ocean. He also called the Samoan Marine Reserve Battalion to active duty. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Soviet forces captured Tikhvin, Russia east of Leningrad. ww2dbase [Siege of Leningrad | CPC]
  • Soviet 30th Army attacked German 3rd Panzer Army at Klin while Soviet 50th Army attacked German 2nd Panzer Division near Moscow, Russia. ww2dbase [Battle of Moscow | CPC]
  • British destroyers HMS Harvester and HMS Hesperus sank German submarine U-208 115 miles west of Gibraltar, killing the entire crew of 45. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Canadian corvette HMCS Windflower, escorting Allied convoy SC-58 off Newfoundland, collided with Dutch freighter Zypenberg in poor visibility due to fog and sank; 23 were killed. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • It was announced that from midnight the British Empire would be at war with Finland, Hungary and Romania. ww2dbase [AC]
Australian New Guinea China
  • River gunboat USS Wake was captured by the Japanese in Shanghai, China. ww2dbase [Shanghai | CPC]
  • Japanese armored cruiser Izumo sank British river gunboat HMS Peterel in Shanghai, China. ww2dbase [Izumo | Shanghai | CPC]
Hawaii Japan
  • Light carrier Hosho departed the Inland Sea, Japan with a large fleet. ww2dbase [Hosho | Inland Sea | CPC]
  • Hans-Joachim Marseille shot down a British Hurricane fighter, his 29th kill, at 0930 hours near Sidi Omar, Libya. ww2dbase [Hans-Joachim Marseille | Sidi Omar | CPC]
Pacific Ocean
  • Shokaku participated in the two strike waves against Pearl Harbor on the island of Oahu, Hawaii. Chuichi Nagumo ordered a withdrawal following recovery of the second attack wave. ww2dbase [Shokaku | CPC]
Taiwan United Kingdom
  • Winston Churchill had lunch with Duchess of Marlborough Alexandra Mary Cadogan and her son Marquess of Blandford John Spencer-Churchill. He had dinner with US Ambassador John Gilbert Winant and W. Averell Harriman; after dinner, they learned of the Japanese raid on Pearl Harbor in the US Territory of Hawaii. He would later write that he "slept the sleep of the saved and thankful", relieved that the United States was finally in the war, and Britain was no longer alone. ww2dbase [Winston Churchill | London, England | CPC]
  • British RAF airmen returning from Murmansk and Arkhangelsk areas of northern Russia began to arrive in Britain by ships. ww2dbase [CPC]
United States
  • Franklin Roosevelt met with Chinese ambassador Hu Shih at the White House in Washington DC, United States, had lunch with Harry Hopkins, and at 1347 hours he was interrupted by a telephone call from Frank Knox, informing him of the Pearl Harbor attack. At 2030 hours, Roosevelt gave a briefing to a small group of Congressmen. ww2dbase [White House | Franklin Roosevelt | Washington | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 7 Dec 1941
USS Maryland burning in foreground and USS Oklahoma capsizing in the backDraft number 1 of RooseveltDraft number 1 of RooseveltDraft number 1 of Roosevelt
See all photos dated 7 Dec 1941

7 Dec 1941 Interactive Map

7 Dec 1942
  • Operation Frankton had Royal Navy submarines drop off commandos to raid German shipping up the River Gironde in Bordeaux Harbor, France. ww2dbase [TH]
  • American forces at Guadalcanal marked the first anniversary of Pearl Harbor by shelling Japanese positions from dawn to dusk in what they term a "Hate Shoot". ww2dbase [Guadalcanal Campaign | AC]
  • The British liner-turned-troopship, SS Ceramic, on her way to Australia with 378 mainly military and nursing passengers, a crew of 278, and 12 children, was torpedoed by U-515 off the Azores. Survivors took to the lifeboats but in heavy seas and a gale force wind, these soon capsize. The U-boat captain, Werner Henke, fished one man from the water for interrogation purposes and left the rest, 655 men, women, and children, to die. U-515 was eventually sunk by American warships in Apr 1944 and the crew captured. Two months later Henke, who had been responsible for sinking 26 Allied ships was shot dead in an attempt to scale the fence of his POW camp in Virginia in the United States. Refusing an order to stop demanded by alerted guards, Henke appeared to deliberately commit suicide rather than face being tried as a war criminal over the Ceramic incident. The one passenger rescued, Royal Engineer Eric Monday, survived the war. ww2dbase [AC]
  • USS Gunnel ended her first war patrol and departed North African waters. ww2dbase [Gunnel | CPC]
Australia Australian New Guinea
  • US B-24 bombers attacked Rabaul, New Britain, causing no damage due to poor weather. ww2dbase [Rabaul, New Britain | CPC]
  • In Operation BG 5, Italian auxiliary ship Olterra launched three manned torpedoes against Gibraltar; they failed to cause any damage. ww2dbase [CPC]
Hawaii Marshall Islands
  • Kamoi arrived at Mili, Marshall Islands. ww2dbase [Kamoi | Mili | CPC]
Pacific Ocean
  • USS Wahoo departed waters off Buka, Solomon Islands for Caroline Islands. ww2dbase [Wahoo | CPC]
United States
  • Balao-class submarine Bowfin was launched at the Portsmouth Navy Yard, Portsmouth, New Hampshire ww2dbase [Bowfin | Portsmouth, New Hampshire | DS]
  • The keel was laid for fleet oiler Escambia at the Marinship yard. This was the first keel laid at Marinship for a tanker, the ship type Marinship was primarily intended to build. ww2dbase [Marinship Shipbuilding | Sausalito, California | DS]
Photo(s) dated 7 Dec 1942
Two submarines of US Navy Submarine Squadron 50 at Rosneath, Scotland, United Kingdom, circa 7 Dec 1942; sub possibilities were USS Barb, USS Blackfish, USS Herring, USS Shad, USS Gunnel, and USS GurnardChristening of battleship New Jersey by Carolyn Edison, wife of New Jersey Governor and former Secretary of the Navy Charles Edison, Philadelphia Navy Yard, Pennsylvania, United States, 7 Dec 1942Submarine Bowfin sponsor Mrs. Jane Gawne, Rear Admiral Thomas Withers, and Bowfin Maid of honor Miss Christine Gawne stand ready to christen the boat prior to her launch at the Portsmouth Navy Yard, 7 Dec 1942.Launching of submarine Bowfin, 7 Dec 1942, Portsmouth Navy Yard, Portsmouth, New Hampshire, United States.

7 Dec 1942 Interactive Map

7 Dec 1943
  • The planned escort carrier Woodcliff Bay was renamed Makin Island. ww2dbase [Makin Island | DS]
  • USS Maryland, USS Pensacola, USS Salt Lake City, and USS Portland, with USS Bailey as one their escorts, departed the Gilbert Islands bound for Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. ww2dbase [Maryland | Bailey | Pensacola | Salt Lake City | Portland | DS]
Caroline Islands
  • Destroyer Yukikaze departed Truk, Caroline Islands to escort carrier Chitose and transport Irako to Yokosuka, Japan. ww2dbase [Yukikaze | Truk | CPC]
  • William Donovan met with Chiang Kaishek at Chiang's home in Chongqing, China. Chiang, who had been told by Dai Li that Donovan wanted to send OSS intelligence agents into China even without Chinese authorization, told Donovan he would not tolerate such challenge to Chinese sovereignty. ww2dbase [William Donovan | Chongqing | CPC]
  • The order for six prototype Ta 152 aircraft was issued in Germany. ww2dbase [Ta 152 | CPC]
Hawaii Italy
  • After sundown, 21st Infantry Brigade of Indian 8th Infantry Division formed a defensive line near Canadian 1st Infantry Division to allow the Canadians to launch a new offensive in the Moro River region in Italy on the following day. New Zealand troops attacked Orsogna in failure. ww2dbase [Advance to the Gustav Line | Orsogna, Abruzzo | CPC]
  • Italy set up a parachute school at Tradate, Lombardia, Italy. ww2dbase [Tradate, Lombardia | CPC]
Japan US Pacific Islands Photo(s) dated 7 Dec 1943
US Navy K-class airship K-84 is being moved into the hangar at Santa Cruz, Brazil, 7 Dec 1943. K-88 is seen at lower left. This hangar was originally built by Luft Hansa for the Graf Zeppelin and the Hindenburg.Crew of USS Snook holding up the submarine

7 Dec 1943 Interactive Map

7 Dec 1944
  • US 83rd Infantry Division became part of US VII Corps. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Dwight Eisenhower, Bernard Montgomery, Omar Bradley, Arthur Tedder, and other Allied military leaders convened to discuss strategy. Eisenhower transferred US 9th Army to Montgomery's army group, but rejected Montgomery's notion that the southern army groups should be halted in order to make Montgomery's army group the sole attacking force. ww2dbase [Dwight Eisenhower | CPC]
  • Unryu was assigned to emergency reinforcement duty for Luzon, Philippine Islands. ww2dbase [Unryu | CPC]
  • An earthquake lasting five minutes struck Nagoya region, Japan, killing 1,000 people and causing damage to many factories. ww2dbase [Aichi | CPC]
  • Kamikaze began a period of refitting at Ominato, Aomori Prefecture, Japan. ww2dbase [Kamikaze | Ominato, Aomori | CPC]
  • Shortly after midnight, destroyers USS Nicholas, USS O’Bannon, USS Fletcher, and USS LaVallette made a sweep of Ormoc Bay, Leyte, Philippines. Finding no Japanese shipping, they conducted a shore bombardment along Apali Point on the west side of the bay. ww2dbase [Philippines Campaign, Phase 1, the Leyte Campaign | Nicholas | Ormoc, Leyte | DS]
  • Allied convoy JW-62 arrived at the Kola Inlet near Murmansk, Russia. ww2dbase [Arctic Convoys | Murmansk | CPC]
United Kingdom United States US Pacific Islands
  • Casablanca-class escort carrier USS Steamer Bay launched 4 SBD Dauntless bombers for delivery to Palmyra Island. Steamer Bay then continued for Manus. ww2dbase [Steamer Bay | Palmyra | DS]
Photo(s) dated 7 Dec 1944
A Mahan-class destroyer, possibly Drayton or Lamson, bombarding the objective area during landings on the shores of Ormoc Bay, Leyte, Philippine Islands, 7 Dec 1944APD Ward burning in Ormoc Bay, Leyte, Philippine Islands, after being struck by special attack aircraft, 7 Dec 1944; the firefighting ship was destroyer OOmar Bradley, Arthur Tedder, Dwight Eisenhower, and Bernard Montgomery at Maastricht, Netherlands, 7 Dec 1944USS Ward on fire and sinking after being struck by a Japanese special attack aircraft in Ormoc Bay, Philippines, 7 Dec 1944, three years to the day after she fired the first US shot of the Pacific War.
See all photos dated 7 Dec 1944

7 Dec 1944 Interactive Map

7 Dec 1945
  • Japanese General Yamashita was found guilty of war crimes. ww2dbase [Tomoyuki Yamashita | CPC]

7 Dec 1945 Interactive Map

7 Dec 1946

United States
  • The Torrance Municipal Airport in Torrance, California, United States was renamed Zamperini Field in honor of Louis Zamperini. ww2dbase [Louis Zamperini | Torrance, California | CPC]

7 Dec 1946 Interactive Map

7 Dec 1947

Photo(s) dated 7 Dec 1947
Emperor Showa (Hirohito) visiting Hiroshima, Japan, 7 Dec 1947; note Atomic Bomb Dome in background
7 Dec 1954

Hawaii United States

7 Dec 1954 Interactive Map

7 Dec 1970

United States
  • USS Saint Paul began inactivation procedures. ww2dbase [Saint Paul | CPC]
7 Dec 1975

United States
  • George Bush stepped down as the Chief of the US Liaison Office to Communist China. ww2dbase [George Bush | CPC]
7 Dec 1988

  • Mayor Hitoshi Motoshima of Nagasaki, Japan said, in a city council meeting, that Emperor Showa bore some responsibility for what had happened in WW2. ww2dbase [Nagasaki | CPC]
7 Dec 1991
  • USS Missouri hosted US President George Bush for a remembrance ceremony on the anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack. ww2dbase [Missouri | CPC]
7 Dec 2000

United States
7 Dec 2003

Photo(s) dated 7 Dec 2003
US Senator Daniel Inouye at the USS Arizona Memorial, Honolulu, Hawaii, United States, 7 Dec 2003

7 Dec 2003 Interactive Map

7 Dec 2020

United States

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

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Famous WW2 Quote
"I have returned. By the grace of Almighty God, our forces stand again on Philippine soil."

General Douglas MacArthur at Leyte, 17 Oct 1944

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