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Transcript of 1929-1945 Timeline
1929-1945 History Timeline
October 29, 1929:
Stock Market Crash
1932: Introduction of Relief Camps
1933: Hitler rises to power
September 1939: Invasion of Poland
December 7, 1941: Pearl Harbor
1942: "Final Solution"
August 6 and 9,
Stock Market Crash
Invasion of Poland
Hiroshima and Nagasaki
August 6 and August 9
Known as "Black Tuesday", the stock market crash in the US was the event that marked the beginning of the Great Depression all across the globe. It was due to panic of the decrease in stock value, common among every shareholder, that they began to immediately sell their stocks. This, however, caused stocks to fall drastically in just a few hours and it caused people and businesses to lose large amounts of money.
The significance of this event was that it affected everyone all over the world and that it was a factor in the outbreak of WWII. In the years to come, people were unbelievably poor; it was the decade that was called "The Dirty Thirties". When unemployment reached its peak, the percentage of Canadian unemployment was at 30% and with such little food and money, it was extremely difficult to get by. Some even resorted to less moral acts like deception and stealing.
A man asleep on a bench. It was not uncommon for families to lose their homes due to their inability to pay rent and mortgages.
October 29th, 1929 was the day the stock market had crashed in the US
Many others had written to Prime Minister R.B. Bennett, desperate for any assistance they could possibly receive, to which he responded along with a small monetary gift.
R.B. Bennett, Prime Minister of Canada from 1930-1935
As a result of the high unemployment, great numbers of men travelled across the country, seeking any kind of work. People hopped onto trains - called "riding the rails" and many headed west to British Columbia. However, they did not find any jobs there either.
On Sunday morning of December 7th, Japanese forces attacked Pearl Harbor by surprise in Hawaii, USA with hundreds of planes. This event is significant because it brought the war to North America and caused the US to enter the war.
One of the means that the Nazis used to exterminate the Jewish people was through gas chambers like this one above
Jewish men in their concentration camp uniforms, doing roll call. A man at the front of the group is aided by two friends to stand
Germany's loss in WWI and the Treaty of Versailles had glued hatred into the heart of Adolf Hitler. Once he rose to power in Germany in the year 1933, he intended to turn his country around, restoring its former strength. He knew that wars were a necessary component for Germany to become a superpower once more and that one of the first steps was to eliminate unemployment.
"Mushrooms" of the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki
The devastation of Nagasaki.
Although there was victory over Germany, there was still war in the Pacific against Japan. The Manhattan Project was the development of atomic bombs that began after Albert Einstein warned US President Truman of its potential. This development would then result in the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 6 and 9, respectively. It caused the deaths of over 180,000 innocent lives and introduced a new and more destructive kind of warfare. To this day, the morality of the decision to drop the atomic bombs is a debate.
In reponse to this challenge, Bennett attempted to rid the men off the streets by placing them in relief camps where they were paid (very low wages), fed, and where they laboured for long hours. Despite Bennett's good intentions, the relief camps caused the men to grow frustrated and angry. This ultimately led to the formation of the Relief Camp Worker's Union (RCWU).
The relief camps' implementation was significant because it contributed to the people's unhappiness toward Bennett's ineffective actions. In 1935, he lost to Mackenzie King, a liberal, in the election since he promised change.
A relief camp dormitory in Trenton, Ontario
Men boarding a train; "riding the rails"
Due to the severity of poverty, hate, fear, as well as other factors like the Treaty of Versailles and the unsatisfaction with current governments, people wanted change for the better. In Italy, Spain, Germany, Russia and Japan, dictators were able to rise to power for they promised to solve their problems.
Benito Mussolini, dictator of Italy
Franco Francisco, dictator of Spain
Adolf Hitler, dictator of Germany
Joseph Stalin, dictator of the USSR
Emperor Hirohito, dictator of Japan
Adolf Hitler, leader of the Nazi party
Millions were put back to work in producing war planes, battleships, and tanks. In order to prepare for upcoming struggle, the youths of Germany were put into the Hitler Youth (for boys) as well as the League of German Maidens (for girls) where they were trained and bombarded with propaganda. The Nazi party controlled everything but it was due to this that Germany was able to restore its power in remarkable time.
The Nazi Party symbol
Hitler's intentions were not known by Canada; Prime Minister Mackenzie King had met Hitler himself, and saw him as a respectable man. Little did he know, however, that there was much under his sleeve.
Mackenzie King, Prime Minister
Hence the name, the Munich Agreement was signed in Munich, Germany. This agreement allowed Hitler to take over one third of Czechoslovakia, called Sudetenland. This portion of the country was considered the "southland" of Germany since 3.25 million people were German-speaking.
The white-coloured section is Sudetenland
They trusted Hitler when he had said that he would no longer pursue gaining control of more countries, but he broke this agreement and took over all of Czechoslovakia. The significance of this is that Canada and the League of Nations did nothing when he broke the Munich Agreement, allowing Hitler to gain even more power in Europe.
It was Hitler, Chamberlain, Mussolini and Daladier (the leaders of Germany, Britain, Italy and France) that were involved in this decision. Ironically, Czechoslovakia was not a participant.
Hitler invaded Poland using the military strategy called "Blitzkrieg", as he did with previous countries he had taken over.
He used this strategy to gain control of countries very quickly and was successful because it was extremely effective. The speed of which he was able to do so was so remarkable that it is sometimes called the "lightening war". Compared to WWI, WWII would be a mobile war since war technology was altered immensely.
Planes - to spearhead into the attack; causes people to panic
Tanks - to quickly eliminate enemies
Infantry - to attack any remaining enemies
Hitler's invasion of Poland was seen as a clear act of aggression to Great Britain and France. His invasion resulted in their declaration of war against Germany as well as Canada's.
Unlike WWI however, Canada had made the decision to be involved in the war as an independent country and not due to the influence of Great Britain.
Germany took over the west half of Poland. The other half was agreed to be controlled by the USSR.
Battle of Britain
May 8 1945: VE Day
VE Day is the day that celebrates the victory in Europe after Hitler's suicide and Germany's surrender. Hitler had ended his life because he realized he was losing the war after his loss in D-Day, as countries were liberated and when Soviet troops reached the capital city of Berlin. He was overcome and did not wish to have the same fate as Benito Mussolini, who was executed by his own people.
1940: Battle of Britain
Canada was involved in many battles but one important one was the Battle of Britain - one that took place in the sky
It was difficult to determine ally from enemy in the sky
There were many "dog fights" and bombings
Germany heavily bombed Britain's factories, ports, airfields, radar installations and even major cities like London in order to be able to carry out an invasion. The people of Britain hid from the attacks in bomb shelters and they called this period of time "the Blitz".
To help defend Britain, Canada sent pilots to fight alongside the British Air Force. Gradually, the Allies were able to take the upper hand and this caused Germany to postpone his plans. The significance of this battle is that Canada assisted Great Britain in achieving the first victory over Hitler.
Many of the fighter planes (the Hurricane and the Spitfire) that were used in battles like the Battle of Britain were manufactured by women since the men were overseas fighting the war. Working in these factories to build war weapons was their contribution to the war
effort on the home front. Unlike WWI, Canada had promoted women workers through iconic women like Veronica Foster who
was known as "Ronnie the Bren Gun Girl".
One of the bombing aftermaths in "the Blitz"
The wreckage had to be cleaned up afterwards
Veronica Foster or "Ronnie the Bren Gun Girl"
In addition to that, women still worked as nurses. Many Canadians also contributed to the war effort by rationing or buying victory bonds. Children specifically, helped by collecting certain materials that may be used in the manufacturing what was needed for the war and also helped by growing crops at school.
The Spitfire fighter plane
The Hurricane fighter plane
Although this attack was in the US, it still caused people to grow extremely fearful in Canada. They believed that Japanese-Canadians were traitors or spies who would assist attacks made by Japanese forces and were immediately considered as "enemy aliens". Soon, in March of 1942, they were forcibly evacuated from their homes and separated from their families to be interned in remote areas of the country. At these camps, they were required to do very hard larbour in horrible conditions and were treated much worse than other enemy aliens due to racial differences.
A group of Japanese-Canadian men in an internment camp
Racism did not only exist in Canada against the Japanese. In Germany, the fourth and final solution to the "Jewish Question" was launched. It was the extermination of all Jewish people and was an extreme anti-Semitic act, where Jews were sent to concentration camps for larbour and where they were eventually sent to their death.
Hitler was only able to progress to this stage due to an event that occurred before: the voyage of the S.S. St. Louis in 1939. Hundreds of Jewish people attempted to escape the grasp of Hitler and travelled to Cuba, Florida, and Canada. Due to Canada's and other countries' decision of rejecting their landing, they were forced to return to Europe. These countries, including Canada who said, "none is too many", were bystanders to the mistreatment of the Jewish race.
Six million Jewish people were unable to see the end of war, as the Holocaust took their lives. That number rises to eleven million when "undesirables" like gypsies and homosexuals are included.
The S.S. St. Louis carried Jewish refugees
On May 7 of 1945, Germany surrendered and the day after was when the Allies had celebrated war's end. This event is significant because Canada was involved in the Second World War and contributed greatly to the Allies' victory. After this victory, Canada arose as a middle power.
VE Day is celebrated in the streets of Toronto
"VICTORY" appears on the headlines of newspapers
Canada was involved in this bombing because Canada had provided uranium from mines, labs in Montreal as well as scientists in the Manhattan Project. The bombing is significant because it was one of the factor's that influenced Japan's decision to surrender, officially ending the war. The day to celebrate the victory is VJ Day.
Pearl Harbor during the surprise attack