April 30, 1945: Adolf Hitler commits suicide

On this day in 1945, holed up in a bunker under his headquarters in Berlin, Adolf Hitlercommits suicide by swallowing a cyanide capsule and shooting himself in the head. Soon after, Germany unconditionally surrendered to the Allied forces, ending Hitler’s dreams of a “1,000-year” Reich.

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Hitler  body were hastily cremated in the chancellery garden, as Soviet forces closed in on the building. When the Soviets reached the chancellery, they removed Hitler’s ashes, continually changing their location so as to prevent Hitler devotees from creating a memorial at his final resting place. Only eight days later, on May 8, 1945, the German forces issued an unconditional surrender, leaving Germany to be carved up by the four Allied powers.

Historical Events

AMERICAN REVOLUTION  
Samuel Adams writes of hope for more battles 1776
AUTOMOTIVE  
Original Land Rover debuts at auto show 1948
CIVIL WAR  
Confederates attack Union troops at Jenkins’ Ferry  1864
COLD WAR  
Organization of American States established  1948
CRIME  
The first federal prison for women opens  1927
DISASTER  
Orange-sized hail reported in India  1888
GENERAL INTEREST  
The first presidential inauguration  1789
Louisiana Purchase concluded  1803
New York World‘s Fair opens  1939
HOLLYWOOD  
“Coming out” episode of Ellen  1997
LITERARY  
Annie Dillard is born 1945
MUSIC  
Willie Nelson is born 1933
OLD WEST  
Arizona Ranger Burton Mossman is born  1867
PRESIDENTIAL  
George Washington gives first presidential inaugural address  1789
SPORTS  
Tennis star Monica Seles stabbed  1993
VIETNAM WAR  
South Vietnam surrenders  1975
WORLD WAR I  
Battle of the Boot  1917
WORLD WAR II  
Adolf Hitler commits suicide in his underground bunker 1945

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