|14 Dec 1895
|6 Feb 1952
Contributor: C. Peter Chen
ww2dbaseBorn Prince Albert Frederick Arthur George of Windsor, he became Duke of York, Earl of Inverness, and Baron Killarney in 1920 and took the throne as King George VI on 11 Dec 1936. He had experience in the service of the British Royal Navy and was a veteran of the Battle of Jutland in WW1. Facing the fragile political situation in Europe at the time, he was at first in favor of the appeasement policy, but very soon he knew a war would be unavoidable. In 1939, he traveled to Canada and the United States to gather support for when Britain would be engulfed in war. When Britain entered the war in 1939, he decided to remain in London instead of fleeing to the countryside as some of his advisors suggested, though at times he did take shelter in Windsor Castle during the worst German raids. During the war, King George VI and his wife the Queen provided morale support for the British people, visiting bomb sites and munitions factories. He had also taken a keen interest in the war on a strategic level; after his personal request, he was briefed on the overall plan for Operation Overlord against the Normandy beaches by Dwight Eisenhower and his lieutenants. Before the war ended, however, his health deteriorated. The heiress presumptive Princess Elizabeth began taking a greater role in royal duties. In 1948, he gave up the title King of Ireland as Ireland left the Commonwealth, then in the following year the title Emperor of India as the former British colony was given dominion status. King George VI died in his sleep at Sandringham House in Norfolk at the age of 56. He now rests in peace at St George's Chapel in Windsor Castle.
Last Major Revision: May 2006
- "Like so many of our people, we have now had a personal experience of German barbarity which only strengthens the resolution of all of us to fight through to final victory."
» 1 Sep 1940
George VI Interactive Map
George VI Timeline
|14 Dec 1895
|Prince Albert, future King George VI, was born at York Cottage, Sandringham Estate, Norfolk, England, United Kingdom.
|13 Apr 1912
|King George V of the United Kingdom signed a Royal Warrant establishing the Royal Flying Corps.
|11 Dec 1936
|King Edward VIII of the United Kingdom abdicated in favour of his brother, Prince Albert, who would soon become King George VI.
|12 May 1937
|The coronation of King George VI took place at Westminster Abbey, London, England, United Kingdom.
|28 Jul 1937
|The IRA attempted a bombing assassination against King George VI in Belfast.
|7 Sep 1939
|King George VI of the United Kingdom provided approval to the National Registration Bill, which gave control of labor to the government as well as requiring identity cards for citizens.
|8 Sep 1939
|King George VI of Britain suggested to Lord Hankey, Minister without Portfolio, that the Government might not reject any German peace proposals out of hand, but should instead say that "We are prepared to discuss terms with the German people, but not with Hitler or his regime".
|4 Dec 1939
|King George VI arrived in France to inspect British Army and RAF units and to view the French Maginot Line.
|11 May 1940
|King George VI of the United Kingdom signed the proclamation canceling the Whitsun holiday.
|9 Jul 1940
|King George VI made a royal visit to RAF Digby during which he presented a Distinguished Flying Cross to Flying Officer Guy Gibson, the future leader of the Dambusters Squadron.
|24 Sep 1940
|King George VI of the United Kingdom instituted the George Cross medal to award those who displayed courage not in the face of the enemy.
|7 Nov 1940
|King George VI became Commander-in-Chief of the Canadian Army.
|20 May 1941
|Thomas Adlerson of British Air Raid Precautions was presented the George Cross award by King George VI.
|1 Oct 1941
|King George VI of the United Kingdom granted the name Royal New Zealand Navy to the New Zealand ships fighting within the British Royal Navy.
|13 May 1942
|King George VI of the United Kingdom became Commander-in-Chief of the Home Guard.
|14 Jun 1942
|The King, Queen, and Princesses of the United Kingdom and the heads of a number of Allied countries attended a United Nations Day ceremony. The flags of 22 states were honoured during a march past Buckingham Palace in London, England, United Kingdom by representatives of the British armed forces, civil defence organisations and war workers.
|13 Nov 1942
|King George VI of the United Kingdom visited the 306th Bomb Group at RAF Thurleigh.
|26 May 1943
|King George VI and Queen Elizabeth visited RAF Wyton near St. Ives, Cambridgeshire, England, United Kingdom.
|23 Sep 1943
|King George VI cabled Chiang Kaishek, informing the Chinese leader that Louis Mountbatten would soon be dispatched to Chinese to discuss an Anglo-American-Chinese joint offensive against Japanese forces in Burma.
|18 May 1945
|King George VI of the United Kingdom awarded Philip Gardner a Victoria Cross for his daring rescue of comrades at Tobruk, Libya on 23 Nov 1941.
|7 Jun 1945
|King George VI and Queen Elizabeth visited the liberated Channel Islands.
|13 Nov 1945
|Norman Jackson was presented with a Victoria Cross medal by King George VI of the United Kingdom for his brave attempt to put out the fire on his Lancaster bomber's starboard wing during the night of 26-27 Apr 1944.
|6 Feb 1952
|George VI passed away.
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