30
Apr
09

On This Day, April 30: Adolf Hitler

April 30, 1945

Adolf Hitler commits suicide in his underground bunker

Der Fuhrer, Adolf Hitler, dictator of Germany, burrowed away in a refurbished air-raid shelter, consumes a cyanide capsule, then shoots himself with a pistol, on this day in 1945, as his “1,000-year” Reich collapses above him.

Hitler had repaired to his bunker on January 16, after deciding to remain in Berlin for the last great siege of the war. Fifty-five feet under the chancellery (Hitler’s headquarters as chancellor), the shelter contained 18 small rooms and was fully self-sufficient, with its own water and electrical supply. He left only rarely (once to decorate a squadron of Hitler Youth) and spent most of his time micromanaging what was left of German defenses and entertaining such guests as Hermann Goering, Heinrich Himmler, and Joachim von Ribbentrop. At his side were Eva Braun, whom he married only two days before their double suicide, and his dog, an Alsatian named Blondi.

Warned by officers that the Russians were only a day or so from overtaking the chancellery and urged to escape to Berchtesgarden, a small town in the Bavarian Alps where Hitler owned a home, the dictator instead chose suicide. It is believed that both he and his wife swallowed cyanide capsules (which had been tested for their efficacy on his “beloved” dog and her pups). For good measure, he shot himself with his service pistol.

The bodies of Hitler and Eva were cremated in the chancellery garden by the bunker survivors (as per Der Fuhrer’s orders) and reportedly later recovered in part by Russian troops. A German court finally officially declared Hitler dead, but not until 1956.

“Adolf Hitler commits suicide in his underground bunker,” The History Channel website, 2009, http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=6439 [accessed Apr 30, 2009]

On This Day

0030 – Jesus of Nazareth was crucified.

0313 – Licinius unified the whole of the eastern empire under his own rule.

1563 – All Jews were expelled from France by order of Charles VI.

1803 – The U.S. purchased the Louisiana Territory from France for $15 million.

1812 – Louisiana admitted as the 18th U.S. state.

1930 – The Soviet Union proposed a military alliance with France and Great Britain.

1947 – The name of Boulder Dam, in Nevada, was changed back to Hoover Dam.

1948 – The Organization of American States held its first meeting in Bogota, Colombia.

1970 – U.S. troops invaded Cambodia to disrupt North Vietnamese Army base areas. The announcement by U.S. President Nixon led to widespread protests.

1984 – U.S. President Reagan signed cultural and scientific agreements with China. He also signed a tax accord that would make it easier for American companies to operate in China.

1998 – NATO was expanded to include Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic. The three nations were formally admitted the following April at NATO’s 50th anniversary summit.

April 30, 1939

New York World’s Fair opens

On April 30, 1939, the New York World’s Fair opens in New York City. The opening ceremony, which featured speeches by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and New York Governor Herbert Lehman, ushered in the first day of television broadcasting in New York.

Spanning 1,200 acres at Flushing Meadow Park in Queens, the fairground was marked by two imposing structures–the “Perisphere” and the “Trylon”–and exhibited such new technology as FM radio, robotics, fluorescent lighting, and a crude fax machine. Norman Bel Geddes designed a Futurama ride for General Motors, and users were transported through an idealized city of the future. Sixty-three nations participated in the fair, which enjoyed large crowds before the outbreak of World War II interrupted many of its scheduled events.

“New York World’s Fair opens,” The History Channel website, 2009, http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=tdihArticleCategory&id=4962 [accessed Apr 30, 2009]

Advertisements

0 Responses to “On This Day, April 30: Adolf Hitler”



  1. Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


April 2009
S M T W T F S
« Mar   May »
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
2627282930  

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 279 other followers


%d bloggers like this: