Timeline of Events in the 1940s


Surplus War Material Approved

June 3, 1940

U.S. Govt. approves sale of surplus war material to Great Britain.

First Peacetime Conscription Draft

September 14, 1940

U.S. Congress approves the 1st peacetime conscription draft.

Lend-Lease Act

March 11, 1941

Lend-Lease Act approved; provided $7 billion in military credits for American manfactured war supplies to Great Britain & other allies.

Jefferson Memorial Dedicated

April 13, 1941

Jefferson Memorial dedicated in Washington, D.C. by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Attack on Pearl Harbor

December 7, 1941

Pearl Harbor in Hawaii was attacked at 7:55 a.m. when Japanese fighter planes lauch a suprise attack on U.S. soil, destroying the U.S. Pacific Fleet that was docked at the base.

Battle of Midway

June 4, 1942 - June 7, 1942

Fought at Midway Islands between U.S. and Japan; 1st major defeat of the Japanese fleet against the U.S. military; Japan invades Aleutian Islands at end of war, which is 1st invasion of American soil in 128 years.

G.I. Bill of Rights Signed

June 22, 1944

G.I. Bill of Rights signed into law, giving benefits to veterans

Yalta Conference

February 3, 1945 - February 11, 1945

Conference was held in Soviet Union by President Roosevelt, Prime Minister Churchill, & Premier Josef Stalin. Agreement was made that USSR would enter the war in the Pacific area against Japan.

Mine Workers Strike

April 1, 1946

400,000 mine workers begin strike; other industries soon followed

Truman Doctrine Passed

March 15, 1947

Passed by U.S. Congress; granted $400 million in aid to Greece & Turkey to battle against Communist terrorism.

1st Around-the-World Non-Stop Flight

March 2, 1949

Flight made by Captain James Gallagher on the B-50 Lucky Lady

NATO formed

April 4, 1949

North American Treaty Organization formed; treaty stated that any attack against any nation of the organization would be considered an attack against all of them