United Kingdom

Allied troops on the beach at Dunkirk waiting for evacuation

Dunkirk Evacuation

Code-named Operation Dynamo, the Dunkirk Evacuation took place May 26 to June 4, 1940, during World War II as part of the Battle of France. During the operation, more than 338,000 Allied troops were successfully evacuated from the beach at Dunkirk (Dunkerque) following the German invasion of France.  Background When Germany invaded Belgium and the …Read More

V-E Day newspaper front page (Boston Daily Globe, via Newspapers.com)

Victory in Europe Day (V-E Day)

Victory in Europe Day (V-E Day, May 8 or May 9, 1945) marked Nazi Germany’s unconditional surrender during World War II and the end of the war in Europe.  War in Europe Ends News of the end of the war in Europe had been expected for some time, and after Hitler’s suicide at the end …Read More

HMS Warspite and Malaya during the battle of Jutland

Battle of Jutland

On May 31, 1916, the British and German navies clashed in the North Sea, off the coast of Denmark, in the Battle of Jutland, the biggest naval battle of World War I. The battle lasted about 12 hours and engaged more than 100,000 men on 250 ships. Chance Encounter The Battle of Jutland began on …Read More

Australian troops charging near a Turkish trench during the Gallipoli Campaign, circa 1915

Gallipoli Campaign

The Gallipoli Campaign (also called the Dardanelles Campaign) was a World War I Allied offensive on the Gallipoli Peninsula in Turkey. It lasted February 17, 1915, through January 9, 1916, and was ultimately unsuccessful, ending in high casualties and evacuation. Background With trench warfare causing stagnation on the Western Front, the British and French decided …Read More

British tank at the Battle of the Somme, September 1916

Battle of the Somme

The Battle of the Somme, also known as the Somme Offensive, was fought July 1 to November 18, 1916, along a 25-mile front near the Somme River in France. It was the first great offensive of World War I and one of its bloodiest battles. Background As part of an Allied agreement to coordinate simultaneous …Read More

German forces entering Warsaw in September 1939 during Invasion of Poland

1939 Invasion of Poland

On September 1, 1939, Germany invaded neighboring Poland in what is considered the opening conflict of World War II. Background In the year and a half leading up to the invasion, Adolf Hitler had been expanding Germany’s territory. On August 23, 1939, Germany signed a nonaggression pact with the Soviet Union that had a secret …Read More