Holocaust 1939

By: Jeffrey, Sam, Nick

March 15 - Germany Invades Czechoslovakia

On September 30, 1938, Adolf Hitler, the British Prime minister, and others signed the Munich Pact. The Munich Pact made Czechoslovakia cede all of its land over to Germany. Germany received Sudetenland, which was "66 percent of Czechoslovakia's coal, 70 percent of their iron and steel, and 70 percent of their electrical power." (The History Channel) Without these resources, the Czech were completely vulnerable for another country to take. Of course, Hitler took advantage of this. There was a meeting on March 15th when, Hitler requested complete access into Prague, the Czech capitol. If it was not granted, he would lead a whole on invasion into Czechoslovakia. The Czech, had no defenses and could not fight back, and President Emil Hacha granted Hitler access into Czechoslovakian borders that same day. By evening of the same day, Hitler made a triumphant entry into Prague.

This is a picture showing the Czechs, showing no resistance, as they let in German troops into there country.

May 15 - Ravensbruck Camp

The Ravensbruck Camp was the second biggest concentration camp for woman. In November of 1938, they began construction of this colossal camp in Northern Germany, near the village of Ravensbruck. The camp finished construction in May of the following year. The first woman to that were acquired to this camp were from the Litchenburg Concentration Camp for woman, consisting of 900 woman. By the end of January 1945, the population of the camp exceeded 50,000 people. Prisoners came from 30 distinct countries. 36% people from Poland, 21% people from the Soviet Union, 18% people from the German Reich, and other countries spread throughout the whole Europe. In this camp, around every month SS authorities would pick out the too weak or too injured to work and killed them. At first these prisoners were shot, but after the Act of 14f13, the SS authorities were told to transfer the weak to the sanitarium in Bernburg where the weak were put into gas chambers and mass killed along with the other disabled and injured from other camps.

This is a picture depicting the few survivors of the Camp Ravensbruck. Notice that most of the people in this picture are woman.

Septmember 1st - Germany Invades Poland

This invasion was the main reactor for World War II. Germany, who attacked with 2000 tanks, and 1000 planes, easily defeated Poland within a few weeks. But the key behind this invasion was the use of the "blitzkrieg" strategy. This was a strategy that was extensive bombing at an early stage, wiping out all air capacity, railroads, communication lines, and any other means of transportation and help. Once these are taken out, Poland was very weak with little to no defenses to shield them. Hitler then immediately followed with a massive land invasion with the artillery. They plowed through the capital, Warsaw, on September 27th. After the capital was taken, infantry moved in, destroying any other form of resistance. Hitler then set up a base of operations in Poland, and set up security officers to exterminate any who opposed them. Later, he began setting up concentration camps in order to bring down all of Poland's population. Britain responded to the invasion on Poland 3 days later by many bombing raids over Germany.

This is a picture of the newspaper when Germany invades Poland. On the headlines in quotes, "GERMAN ARMY INVADES POLAND; CITIES BOMBED, PORTS BLOCKED..." This shows how this was a very frightening event, even to the US, who were still neutral at this given time when this was published.

World War II

September 3 - Britain and France Declare War on Germany

When Germany invaded Poland, both Britain and France declared war on Germany. The British ship Athenia, had been falsely sunk by the Germans. The Germans had thought that the ship was armed but it was simply just a luxurious passenger ship. This boat carried more than 1000 people on it, and 112 people lost their lives in the accident. 28, were American, but President Roosevelt dismissed it and America remained neutral. British responded my dropping 13 tons of anti-Nazi propaganda leaflets over Germany, an example of civil disobedience. But later on September 4, they would begin bombing German ships. During all this time though, the British received orders to hold back and not kill any German civilians. France on the other side would be more aggressive. 2 weeks after Britain's leaflets, France would begin pressuring the western border of Germany. The problem was, the French needed to cross Belgium and Luxembourg in order to even get to the German border. That meant that they needed to pass a 90 mile-space before they could even attack. Germany took advantage of this space and made sure no one passed between the 2 countries. Thus delaying the French attack.

This is a newspaper with a headline saying, "Britain Declares War" then there is a small subscript saying, "France Ready to Back Britain"

These are both saying that Britain and France have allied and are going to war with Germany.

November 8 - Failure to Assassinate Hitler

This date was an anniversary of The Beer Hall Putsch of 1923, which was also known as the date when Hitler tried to attempt to seize power in Munich. But the Nazi Party tradition was to annually meet up in Munich and celebrate this anniversary. At this time, Hitler would usually give a speech to the party. On the 16th anniversary of the Hitler Beer Hall Putsch, a bomb went off 12 minutes after Hitler left the hall. The bomb was effective, killing 6 and wounding 60. Germany blamed British secret agents, but the assassination was most probably the work of a German anti-Nazi military conspiracy. Georg Elser, a German communist was later identified as the one who planted the bomb, surprisingly enough, he was a carpenter. But during this day, due to the fog in Munich, the airport was shut down, which meant that Hitler was forced to return to Berlin in train, not plane. With this delay, Hitler was then compelled to begin his speech 30 minutes earlier. It was only a matter of minutes but it was enough to save his life and undoubtedly change the course of world history. Had he not leave the hall at 9:07, he would've been killed by the explosion at 9:20.

This was a picture of Georg Elser, who was the man who planted the bomb trying to assassinate Hitler. Today, there is a street named after him, as well as a memorial.


Germany Invades Czechoslovakia:

This event showed the world that Czechoslovakia had surrendered without any resistance under Hitler's threats. This gave other countries motivation to fight, but also saddened the world to know that Czechoslovakia was lost to Germany. Because this was one of the first invasions of Germany, it was such a shock to the world, as, one unified nation surrendered to Hitler with nothing but a threat. No one even tried to stop them, as it was virtually impossible, the "invasion" was only a matter of hours. The Czechs were the first victims of Hitler's terror, and the world prepared themselves for the worse.


Ravensbruck had a huge impact on the world, as it was one of the only women's concentration camps. Because of such an emphasis on it being a women's camp and not a regular camp, it gained attention from all over the world. Sadly, over 50,000 women were killed. The world gained knowledge of this, and now there is no such thing as sex discrimination, where one sex is a higher rank than another.

Germany Invades Poland:

This invasion had the greatest impact, as it triggered other nations to retaliate towards Hitler's actions. This was the third invasion, and to respond for this invasion Britain and France declared war on Germany. Sadly, because of this invasion, WW2 starts, which ended the lives of so many innocent people. With this event, the world now knows to never start another atrocity such as this one.

Britain and France Declare War:

Once these 2 countries declared war, it snowballed to many more countries. It proved a point saying that Hitler can be stopped, and that we were not afraid to attack him. This led to many events, such as the leaflets from Britain, and the attack from the French. This was another turning point, as then more and more countries joined and eventually we take down Hitler.

Failure to Assassinate Hitler:

This once again depicted a voice, against Hitler. Even though it was a failure, everyone gained knowledge that there are people in the world willing to stop Hitler. 6 people died from this bomb, and even though it did not kill Hitler, it showed the world that he can be stopped.

Who or What Made These Events So Effective

Germany invades Czechoslovakia:

Hitler made these events so effective, he threatened the Czech saying that without access to Prague, he would launch a full on invasion.


Heinrich Himmler, the main mastermind behind the concentration camp, created the Ravensbruck camp.

Germany Invades Poland:

Germany could not have had a successful invasion without the "blitzkrieg" strategy. This strategy proved to be helpful in many other invasions, and now it is known all over the world.

Britain and France Declare War:

This event was later effective when more and more countries retaliated against Hitler. Without these 2 countries declaring war, no other country would've had the strength or courage to retaliate.

Failure to Assassinate Hitler:

Georg Elser, the man who planted the bomb, had barely failed to assassinate Hitler. If it wasn't for the fog in Munich that day, Hitler would've well known be dead at 9:20.

Victims of the Events

Germany Invades Czechoslovakia:

The Czechs were the victims, as Germany invaded them. The bystanders were all the other nations across the world, who just watched the nation perish.


Obviously the 50,000+ woman who died were the victims. No one tried to stop them.

Germany Invades Poland:

The Polish, who were the victims of this invasion, were not the first, but not the last either. They had no idea what would hit them with the "blitzkrieg" strategy. The bystanders were Britain and France, but almost immediately they would come and declare war towards Germany

Britain and France Declare War:

There were no victims in this event, it was simply just a declaration of war.

Failure to Assassinate Hitler:

The victims were the 6 people killed from the bomb that was meant for Hitler. The crowd at the Beer Hall Putsch were the bystanders, the bomb was not meant for them, but they were still killed and injured.


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