19 Dec 1891

Japan
  • Prince Kotohito married Chieko Sanjo, daughter of Prince Sanetomi Sanjo. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
19 Dec 1894
19 Dec 1915
  • Sir Douglas Haig assumed command of the British forces in France. ww2dbase [AC]
19 Dec 1916

Photo(s) dated 19 Dec 1916
Yamashiro running trials off Tateyama, Japan, 19 Dec 1916
19 Dec 1918

Russia
  • The first Soviet military intelligence organization, Military Department or VO, was formed as part of VCheKa (All-Russian Extraordinary Commission for Combating Counter-Revolution, Speculation, Sabotage and Misconduct in Office). ww2dbase [CPC]
19 Dec 1919
  • An IRA ambush at Ashtown, Dublin, Ireland failed in its attempt to assassinate the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Sir John French. After a brief gunfight the police escort fought off the attack. ww2dbase [AC]
19 Dec 1921

Germany
  • Karl von Le Suire was awarded the Iron Cross 1st Class. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
19 Dec 1922

Japan
19 Dec 1932

Japan
  • Yun Bong-gil was executed in Kanazawa, Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 19 Dec 1932
Yun Bong-gil being prepared for execution, Kanazawa, Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan, 19 Dec 1932, photo 1 of 2Yun Bong-gil being prepared for execution, Kanazawa, Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan, 19 Dec 1932, photo 2 of 2
19 Dec 1937

China
  • Men of the Japanese 13th Division, having executed tends of thousands of refugees and prisoners of war in Nanjing, China by machine gun, bayonet, and fire since 16 Dec 1937, began to burn the remains; the ashes were dumped into the Yangtze River. Reverend James M. McCallum, who was in Nanjing, noted in his diary "Never I have heard or read such brutality. Rape! Rape! Rape! We estimate at least 1,000 cases a night, and many by day.... Women are being carried off every morning, afternoon and evening. The whole Japanese army seems to be free to go and come as it pleases, and to do whatever it pleases." ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
United States
  • USS Pollack arrived at San Diego, California, United States. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 19 Dec 1937
Dead Chinese piled on the shore of the Yangtze River, Nanjing, China, Dec 1937Dead Chinese piled on the shore of the Yangtze River near Xiaguan Pier, Nanjing, China, Dec 1937Japanese soldiers with a Chinese child, Nanjing, China, 19 Dec 1937

19 Dec 1937 Interactive Map

19 Dec 1938

Photo(s) dated 19 Dec 1938
Kumano, 19 Dec 1938; seen in Japanese Division of Navy Department Intelligence booklet 00-30V-57 / War Department Intelligence booklet FM 30-50Prisoners in the concentration camp at Sachsenhausen, Germany, 19 Dec 1938Prisoners at Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp, Germany, 19 Dec 1938

19 Dec 1938 Interactive Map

19 Dec 1939
  • In their attack on Summa, Finland, the Soviet Army lost 20 of 100 tanks. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
  • Hans Langsdorff passed away. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • British light cruiser HMS Orion intercepted German freighter Arauca off Miami, Florida, United States; the German crew sailed into Port Everglades, Florida to avoid capture as the United States was still a neutral nation. ww2dbase [CPC]
Atlantic Ocean
  • HMS Hyperion intercepted German passenger liner Columbus 450 miles east of Cape May, New Jersey, United States; Columbus' crew scuttled the ship to prevent capture. ww2dbase [CPC]
China
  • Japanese troops captured Kunlun Pass 59 kilometers northeast of Nanning, Guangxi Province, China. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
19 Dec 1940
  • British battleships HMS Valiant and HMS Warspite shelled Italian defensive positions at Vlorë, Albania overnight in support of Greek advances. ww2dbase [Main Article | Event | CPC]
  • German submarine U-37 mistakenly torpedoed and sank Vichy French submarine Sfax (4 killed, 69 survived) and support ship Rhône (11 killed) 7 miles north of Cape Juby, Morocco. The captain of U-37 chose to not record this incident on the ship's logs. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • British gunboat HMS Aphis bombarded Bardia, Libya in support of Operation Compass. Meanwhile, General O'Connor reported that in the first 10 days of the offensive his forces had suffered 141 killed or missing and 387 wounded. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Italian submarine Bagnolini sank British ship Amicus 200 miles west of Ireland, killing all aboard. ww2dbase [CPC]
Poland
  • Archbishop Sapieha of Krakow, Poland sent a letter to Auschwitz Commandant Rudolf Höss requesting permission for Christmas mass to be held in the camp for Catholic prisoners. Höss turned down the request because the camp rules did not permit religious observations, but did agree that approximately 6,000 one-kilogram food parcels could be sent to all the prisoners over the holidays. ww2dbase [Main Article | Facility | CPC]
United Kingdom
  • British destroyers HMS Veteran and HMS Verity collided in Lough Foyle near the Royal Navy base at Londonderry, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom. HMS Verity's engine room was flooded, requiring her to remain out of commission for repairs until 5 Mar 1941. ww2dbase [CPC]
Photo(s) dated 19 Dec 1940
Matilda tank of the UK 7th Royal Tank Regiment in North Africa, 19 Dec 1940Former President Kyösti Kallio of Finland (resigned) and Field Marshal C.G.E. Mannerheim at Helsinki railway station, Finland, 19 Dec 1940; Pres Ryti, Lt Gen Heindrichs, and Col Paasonen in background

19 Dec 1940 Interactive Map

19 Dec 1941
  • Lieutenant George Edward Gaudreau was named the commanding officer of HMCS Trillium. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Adolf Hitler relieved Walther von Brauchitsch as army commander-in-chief and took over command of the army himself, promising "to educate it to be National Socialist". Among the first orders he issued was the "no retreat" order, condemning thousands of troops to die in position outside of Moscow, Russia, without the chance to maneuver in defense. On the same day, the Soviet Military Collegium, having previously evacuated to Chkalov (now Orenburg), Russia, returned to Moscow. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH, CPC]
  • Japanese troops reached the Wong Nai Chung Gap in central Hong Kong island where they were held by Canadian and colonial Chinese troops. Seven ships of the British Royal Navy (river gunboat HMS Tern, minelayer HMS Redstart, boom vessel HMS Watergate, boom vessel HMS Barlight, boom vessel HMS Aldgate, tug HMS Poet Chaucer, and tug HMS Alliance), along with several merchant vessels, were scuttled in the Hong Kong harbor to prevent Japanese capture. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Generalmajor Wilhelm Weiß succeeded Rudolf Konrad as the commanding officer of the German 7th Mountain Division. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Japanese aircraft attacked Olongapo, Luzon, Philippine Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Indian 4th Division captured Derna, Libya. To the west, 30 tanks arrived at Benghazi as Axis reinforcement. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Multiple German submarines continued to shadow Allied convoy HG-76 en route between Gibraltar and Britain. At 0415 hours, 435 miles west of Lisbon, Portugal, U-574 fired 3 torpedoes at British destroyer HMS Stanley and sank her, killing 136; British sloop HMS Stork counterattacked with depth charges, forced U-574 to surface, and sank her by ramming at 0427 hours; 28 were killed, 16 survived. At 0615 hours, U-108 attacked HG-76, damaging British transport Ruckinge (3 killed, 39 survived); HMS Samphire scuttled Ruckinge by gunfire after all survivors were taken off. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • British cruisers HMS Neptune, HMS Aurora, and HMS Penelope and destroyers HMS Kandahar, HMS Lance, HMS Lively, and HMS Havock sailed into a minefield 30 miles northeast of Tripoli, Libya at 0100 hours. Aurora, Penelope, and Kandahar (79 killed, 104 survived) were damaged, and Neptune sank after hitting four mines (766 killed, 1 survived). ww2dbase [CPC]
  • William Dimoline was promoted to the rank of colonel. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Egypt
  • Italian frogmen on human torpedoes slipped into Alexandria harbour in Egypt and sank British WW1-era battleships Queen Elizabeth and Valiant with limpet mines; 6 Italians were captured in this mission. Although both were later refloated and repaired, their loss coupled with the sinking in the previous month of the Barham left the Royal Navy without a single capital ship in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, giving the Italian Navy superiority in the region. ww2dbase [Main Article | AC, CPC]
France
  • In a daring daylight raid by 41 RAF Manchester bombers on the French port of Brest, the gates to the dock containing the German battlecruiser Scharnhorst were so badly damaged that the mighty warship would be confined at the port for a further month. Two aircraft of No. 97 Squadron were lost to ground fire and Luftwaffe fighters. ww2dbase [Main Article | AC]
Hawaii
  • Clarence Tinker was named the Commander of the US Army Air Forces in the Hawaii Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Hong Kong
  • In fierce hand-to-hand fighting in Hong Kong, Canadian Army Company Sergeant Major John Osborn of the Winnipeg Grenadiers inspired his men by scooping up and hurling back Japanese grenades. One he could not reach in time so he threw himself onto the it in order to save his comrades. Osborn was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross, which was Canada's first. ww2dbase [AC]
India
  • In India, General Archibald Wavell received a telegram from Chiang Kaishek in which the Chinese leader offered to join any plan proposed by the Allies. ww2dbase [Main Article | AC]
Mediterranean Sea
  • HMS Neptune, dead in the water from having struck three mines on the previous day, drifted into a fourth mine in the Mediterranean Sea and capsized, killing 737. 30 survived the sinking, but all but 1, Norman Walton, would die before being rescued. 150 of those lost were New Zealand sailors. ww2dbase [Main Article | AC]
Panama Canal Zone
  • USS S-26 arrived at Naval Base Coco Solo, Panama Canal Zone. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Philippines Russia
  • The Soviets landed 20,000 men on the Kerch Peninsula in Russia with the aim of lifting the siege of Sevastopol. ww2dbase [Main Article | AC]
Singapore
  • Japanese troops captured Penang on the Malay Peninsula. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
US Pacific Islands
  • Japanese Navy land-based attack aircraft from Roi, Kwajalein, Marshall Islands attacked Wake Atoll, seriously damaging defense battalion facilities at Camp One. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]

19 Dec 1941 Interactive Map

19 Dec 1942
  • HMS Snapdragon was bombed and sunk by the Luftwaffe northwest of Benghazi, Libya. ww2dbase [AC]
Alaska
  • USS S-35 disembarked a sick sailor at Adak, US Territory of Alaska and set sail for Kiska. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Hawaii
  • Workers at Dock No. 4 at Pearl Harbor Navy Yard, US Territory of Hawaii began pouring concrete. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Italy
  • The P.119 prototype fighter took its first flight. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Japan Pacific Ocean
  • USS Albacore returned to the site of Tenryu's sinking, which took place on the previous day, and observed wooden crates, 85 empty oil drums, and other debris floating in the water. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Russia
  • Erich von Manstein's units reached a point 30 miles south of Stalingrad, Russia, which would be the extent of their advance. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
Switzerland
  • Chief Petty Officers Wally Hammond and Don Lister, having previously escaped from Germany, successfully crossed the border into Switzerland. They were prisoners of war of Oflag IV-C at Colditz Castle in Germany. ww2dbase [CPC]
Tunisia
  • Captured French sloop La Batailleuse departed Bizerte, Tunisia with an Italian crew for La Spezia, Italy. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Captured French sloop Commandant Rivière departed Bizerte, Tunisia with an Italian crew for La Spezia, Italy. ww2dbase [CPC]
Photo(s) dated 19 Dec 1942
SBD Dauntless aircraft flying over USS Enterprise (foreground) and USS Saratoga (background), off Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands, 19 Dec 1942

19 Dec 1942 Interactive Map

19 Dec 1943
  • Light carrier Ryuho departed Palau Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | Tabular Record of Movement | CPC]
  • Japanese hospital ship Hikawa Maru arrived at Kwajalein, Marshall Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | Tabular Record of Movement | CPC]
  • Submarine Croaker was launched, sponsored by the wife of Admiral William H. P. Blandy. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • 50,000 people gathered in the square in Kharkov, Ukraine to witness the hanging of four Germans found guilty of killing 30,000 civilians in Ukraine. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
  • French Résistants engaged in heavy fighting with Germans in Bernex, France. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
  • RAF bombers delivered propaganda leaflets over France. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • In an order published by Lord Louis Mountbatten the air forces of the RAF and USAAF in the South East Asia Command were combined into a single force under the command of Air Chief Marshal Sir Richard Peirse. ww2dbase [Main Article | AC]
Australian New Guinea
  • 16 B-24 bombers with an escort of 50 P-38, F4U, and Kittyhawk fighters attacked Rabaul, New Britain. 49 Japanese fighters rose to defend. The Americans lost 2 aircraft in combat and a further 8 aircraft were written off after the mission; the Japanese lost 5 A6M fighters in combat. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • 18 A6M3 fighters arrived at Rabaul, New Britain. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Australian Papua
  • 2nd Bomb Squadron (flying B-25 and B-26 aircraft) of USAAF 22nd Bomb Group and the headquarters of USAAF 375th Troop Carrier Group were transferred out of Dobodura Airfield, Australian Papua. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Japan
  • USS S-35 set sail toward Kamchatka Peninsula, Russia. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Pacific Ocean
  • USS Grayback sank a Japanese patrol vessel in the Philippine Sea, hitting her with 3 of 4 torpedoes. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
United States
  • USS Golet departed Manitowoc, Wisconsin, United States. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 19 Dec 1943
Erwin Rommel and Gerd von Rundstedt in discussion at the Hotel George V, Paris, France, 19 Dec 1943, photo 1 of 5Erwin Rommel and Gerd von Rundstedt in discussion at the Hotel George V, Paris, France, 19 Dec 1943, photo 2 of 5Erwin Rommel and Gerd von Rundstedt in discussion at the Hotel George V, Paris, France, 19 Dec 1943, photo 3 of 5Erwin Rommel and Gerd von Rundstedt in discussion at the Hotel George V, Paris, France, 19 Dec 1943, photo 5 of 5; General Alfred Gause at right of photo
See all photos dated 19 Dec 1943

19 Dec 1943 Interactive Map

19 Dec 1944
  • Chester Nimitz was promoted to the rank of fleet admiral. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • German V-2 rocket hit Chelmsford, Essex, England, United Kingdom at 0130 hours. The war factory was hit, killing 39 and seriously injuring 33. ww2dbase [Main Article | Event | CPC]
Belgium
  • Germans captured 9,000 surrounded US troops in the Schnee Eifel region on the Belgian-German border. Meanwhile, the US 101st Airborne of the Allied reserves and 10th Armored Divisions of the US Third Army were sent to Bastogne to hold the vital road junction in Belgium. ww2dbase [Main Article | TH]
Burma
  • William Slim completed a two-day meeting with Montagu Stopford and Frank Messervy regarding Operation Extended Capital. Meanwhile, in the field, Indian 2nd Division relieved Indian 20th Division and began marching for Shwebo, Burma 40 miles northwest of Mandalay. Finally, Indian 19th Division captured Wuntho en route to Pinlebu and Pinbon, Burma. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
China
  • Colonel Edward Rector, one of the original Flying Tigers pilots, was shot down by anti-aircraft fire near Jinmen Island, Fujian Province, China while flying a P-51 fighter. He was rescued by Chinese civilians, who also helped him to reach the Sino-American Special Technical Cooperative Organization (SACO) headquarters in Zhangzhou, Fujian. He would later make a 200-kilometer trek inland to Longyan airfield to be picked up by a 14th Air Force aircraft to Kunming, Yunnan Province, China. ww2dbase [CPC]
Hawaii
  • Barbers Point Naval Air Station: Officers moved into the first of 3 new JOQs. [Junior Officer Quarters ?] ww2dbase [Main Article | DS]
Marshall Islands
  • USS Sunfish arrived at Majuro, Marshall Islands, ending her ninth war patrol. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Pacific Ocean
  • Unryu was hit by a torpedo from USS Redfish about 200 kilometers southeast of Shanghai, China, which rendered her dead in the water and afire. At 1650 hours, just as some power was restored, USS Redfish hit her again at 1650 hours, igniting aviation gas and sank within seven minutes. 1,241 were killed (including commanding officer Captain Konishi Kaname); 147 survived and were rescued by destroyer Shigure. ww2dbase [Main Article | Tabular Record of Movement | CPC]
  • USS Preston guarded carriers while the carriers launched strikes against Luzon, Philippine Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
United Kingdom
  • Allied convoy RA-62 arrived at Loch Ewe, Scotland, United Kingdom. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 19 Dec 1944
Map depicting the US 3rd ArmyChurchill AVRE vehicle with fascine, of UK 79th (Experimental) Armored Division Royal Engineers, Italy, 19 Dec 1944Map depicting the German 6th Panzer Army attack during the Ardennes Offensive, 16-19 Dec 1944Map of the Bastogne, Belgium area, 19-23 Dec 1944
See all photos dated 19 Dec 1944

19 Dec 1944 Interactive Map

19 Dec 1945
  • McFarland was decommissioned from service. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • Engstrom was decommissioned from service. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
France
  • Free French fighter ace Jean Demozay returning from a trip to London, England, United Kingdom was killed when his aircraft crashed near Buc, France. ww2dbase [AC]
Guam
  • I-400 arrived at Guam, Mariana Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • I-401 arrived at Guam, Mariana Islands. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
  • I-14 arrived at Apra Harbor, Guam at 0911 hours. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
Japan
  • Shigeru Yoshida was made a member of the House of Peers of the Japanese Diet. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
United Kingdom
  • The traitor Jon Amery, founder of Heinrich Himmler's British Free Corps, convicted of High Treason, was executed at Wandsworth Prison, London, England, United Kingdom. ww2dbase [AC]
Photo(s) dated 19 Dec 1945
Korean Provisional President Kim Gu with other officials at a sporting event, Seoul, Korea, 19 Dec 1945

19 Dec 1945 Interactive Map

19 Dec 1951

United Kingdom
  • HMS Mauritius arrived at Chatham, Kent, England, United Kingdom. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
19 Dec 1954

Russia
  • Viktor Abakumov was executed in Leningrad, Russia. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
19 Dec 1960

United States
  • USS Springer received her new Chilean crew in training. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
19 Dec 1968

United States
  • USS Wasp arrived at Naval Air Station Quonset Point, Rhode Island, United States. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
19 Dec 1970

United States
  • USS Wasp arrived at Naval Air Station Quonset Point, Rhode Island, United States. ww2dbase [Main Article | CPC]
19 Dec 1972

Pacific Ocean
  • USS Ticonderoga recovers Apollo 17 astronauts 450 miles southeast of Samoa. ww2dbase [Main Article | DS]
Photo(s) dated 19 Dec 1972
Recovering operations for Apollo 17, 19 Dec 1972; note USS Ticonderoga in background

19 Dec 1972 Interactive Map

19 Dec 1977

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
"Among the men who fought on Iwo Jima, uncommon valor was a common virtue."

Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, 16 Mar 1945