“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Trenton in Mercer County, New Jersey — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)

World War II Memorial

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By Devry Becker Jones, November 14, 2020
1. World War II Memorial
"The American people, in their righteous might will win through absolute victory."
President Franklin D. Roosevelt

"Our debt to the heroic men and women in the service of our country can never be repaid. They have earned our unending gratitude. America will never forget their sacrifices."
President Harry S. Truman

"We will accept nothing less than full victory."
G.C. Marshall

"They have delivered the goods when and where needed in every theater of operations and across every ocean is the biggest, the most difficult and dangerous job ever undertaken. As time goes on, there will be greater public understanding of our merchant's fleet record during this war."
President Franklin D. Roosevelt

"From this solemn occasion a better world shall emerge out of the blood and carnage of the past, a world founded upon faith and understanding, a world dedicated to the dignity of man and his fulfillment of his most cherished wish for freedom, tolerance and justice."
General Douglas MacArthur

"The victory
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By Devry Becker Jones, November 14, 2020
2. World War II Memorial
of the democracies can only be complete with the utter defeat of the war machines."
G.C. Marshall

Medal of Honor
Sgt. John Basilone
Raritan, NJ
1Lt. Carlton Robertrouh
Lindenwood, NJ
Pvt. Franklin Earl Sigler
Glen Ridge, NJ

BG Frederick W. Castle
U.S. Army Air Corps
Mountain Lake, NJ

CPO Peter Tomich
Newark, NJ

Pfc. George Benjamin, Jr.
Carney's Point, NJ
1Lt. Francis X. Burke
Jersey City, NJ
PFC John W. Dutko
Riverside, NJ
2Lt. Stephen Gregg
Bayonne, NJ
PFC Martin O'May
Phillipsburg, NJ
PFC. Francis X. McGraw
Camden, NJ
TSgt. John Meagher
Jersey City, NJ
Pvt. Nicholas Minui
Carteret, NJ
MSgt. Nicholas Oresko
Bayonne, NJ
Sgt. Joseph J. Sadowski
Perth Amboy, NJ
Cpl. Horace M. Thorne
Keyport, NJ

Asiatic-Pacific Campaigns
World Events
1937 - 1940
Japan strives to control the Pacific through hostile actions against neighboring countries, attacks on U.S.
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By Devry Becker Jones, November 14, 2020
3. World War II Memorial
and British interests, and, finally, a full-scale invasion of China.

Sept. 27, 1940
Japan signs the Tripartite Pact with Germany and Italy.

Apr. 1941
The United States uses the Lend-Lease Act to aid China. The American Volunteer Group, popularly known as the Flying Tigers, arrives in China and successfully engages the Japanese in combat.

Dec. 7, 1941
The Japanese launch a surprise attack on the U.S. Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, at 7:58 A.M. Eighteen ships, including eight battleships, are severely damaged or destroyed. Over 2,4000 military personnel are killed; more than 1,000 are wounded.

Dec. 8, 1941
The U.S. declares war on Japan. President Franklin D. Roosevelt refers to December 7, 1941, as a "date which will live in infamy." Over the next six months, Japan faces few setbacks in its aggression as it conquers the Philippines, Wake Island, Guam, Malaya, Thailand, and Shanghai.

March 11, 1942
U.S. General Douglas MacArthur, the Allied commander under siege in the Philippines, leaves Corregidor for Australia. A week later he delivers his "I Shall Return" speech.

March 18, 1942
The U.S. government begins interning 120,000 West Coast Japanese Americans in detention camps.

Apr. 10, 1942
The Japanese take the Bataan
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By Devry Becker Jones, November 14, 2020
4. World War II Memorial
Peninsula. With little food and water and subject to intense heat and brutality, 76,000 Allied POWs are forced on a sixty mile "death march" to a POW camp. Up to 11,000 Americans perish.

Apr. 18, 1942
Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle leads a strike force of B-25 Mitchell aircraft from the carrier USS Hornet (CV-8) on a bombing raid over Tokyo. the raid stuns the Japanese and boosts Allied morale. Japan retaliates by executing some of the captured Doolittle flight crews.

May 5-8, 1942
The Japanese take Corregidor; the U.S. surrenders the Philippines. The Battle of the Coral Sea, the first battle in history decided by aircraft carriers, halts the Japanese navy off New Guinea.

June 4-5, 1942
U.S. naval forces fight the Battle of Midway, destroy half of Japan's carrier fleet, and turn the tide of the Pacific war.

Aug 7, 1942
U.S. Marines open the first counter-offensive in the Pacific and invate Tulagi and Guadalcanal. The six-month battle for Guadalcanal succeeds as 19,000 U.S. Marines defeat the Japanese. They secure an important airbase for U.S. operations over the Solomon Islands.

Aug. 13, 1942
The Manhattan Project, the code name for building an atomic bomb, begins. Over the next three years, the project secretly coordinates nationwide efforts in scientific research
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By Devry Becker Jones, November 14, 2020
5. World War II Memorial
and the industrial production of bomb components.

Aug. 30, 1942
The U.S. establishes a base on Adak Island, in the Aleutian Islands, to launch air raids against Japanese occupied Kiska.

New Jersey Events
Curtis Wright Corporation in Paterson and Caldwell helps to develop the P-40 Warhawk fighter; the Flying Tigers later make the plane famous in China.
Curtis Wright of Caldwell manufactures Wright Paterson engines for the B-25 Mitchell bomber, the planes used for the Doolittle bombing raids.

The Victor Company of Japan (JVC) severs ties with Camden affiliate RCA-Victor.

With the war effort shifting into high gear, the Garden State ultimately fills $12 billion in war contracts.

Grumman Aircraft's Avenger, the U.S. Navy's leading torpedo bomber, is used extensively in every theater of the war. Of the 9,839 Avengers manufactured 7,546, including the one piloted by George H.W. Bush, are made in Trenton.

The Signal Corps laboratories at Fort Monmouth make breakthrough in radio communication and RADAR, providing the Allies with new technological advantages in the war.

The new RCA research laboratory in Princeton aids the U.S. war effort by producing improved
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By Devry Becker Jones, November 14, 2020
6. World War II Memorial
radar defenses, antennas, infrared viewers, and acoustical depth charges.

The armed forces incorporate a new product from Newark into K-Rations: M&M's. Soon 200,000 pounds are produced per week.

Fort Monmouth furthers its program for training carrier pigeons used in field communications; the pigeons receive credit for saving thousands of Allied lives.

Bayonne based Elco Naval Division builds hundreds of PT boats, including the PT-109 commanded by John F. Kennedy.

August 13, 1942
The Manhattan Project engages a group of scientists from Princeton, a major center for nuclear physics. After the war, the project's scientific director, J. Robert Oppenheimer, will lead Princeton's Institute for Advanced Study.

Aug. 1942 - Feb. 1943
The New Jersey Plan uses schools and other facilities to train 20,000 industrial supervisors per year, greatly enhancing war production.

Oct. 24-25, 1942
Raritan native John Basilone's heroic actions on Guadalcanal result in his receiving the Medal of Honor. He is one of seven New Jersey recipients of the Medal of Honor in the Pacific theater.

Dec. 7, 1942
On the first anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, the U.S. Navy launches the battleship USS New Jersey (BB-62) at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard.

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1. Japan's wartime expansion
2. U.S. strategists studying Philippine Island defenses
3. American captain training Chinese troops at Kwangsi, China
4. Chinese civilians building the Burma Road
5. Jobless American during the Great Depression
6. Depression food line
7. Soldiers scrambling during training drill
8. Soldier during the first minutes of the Pearl Harbor attack
9. The Zero - Japan's main fighter plane
10. The USS Arizona (BB-390 - minutes after being struck by Japanese bombers at Pearl Harbor
11. The bomb damaged Chinese city of Chunking
12. The USS Shaw exploding during the Japanese attack at Pearl Harbor
13. New Jersey National Guard light tanks parading in Paterson, N.J.
14. One of the numerous wartime workers constructing the Liberty Ship USS George Washington Carver
15. U.S. Marines recruitment poster
16. Soldier guarding U.S. coastline
17. Women fire fighters at Pearl Harbor
18. The battleship USS West Virginia burning at Pearl Harbor
19. Avenge Pearl Harbor poster
20. President Franklin D. Roosevelt signing the declaration of war against Japan
21. Newspaper announcing "Japs Declare War"
22. USS Kitkun Bay near the Mariana Islands
23. The Flying Tigers' P-40 Warhawks in action
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Enemy submarine fleeting Allied ships
25. American paratroopers heading to battle
26. U.S. fighter plane on deck of aircraft carrier
27. One of Doolittle's B-25 bombers taking off from the aircraft carrier USS Hornet
28. Shot down Japanese plane crashing after failed attack on USS Kitkun Bay
30. The U.S. 165th Infantry attacking Butaritari on the Makin Atoll in the Gilbert Islands
31. Allied PT boat patrolling New Guinea coast
32. U.S. Women's Air Force Service pilot
33. The launching of the USS New Jersey
34. Allied soldiers enduring the Bataan "death march"
35. One of the millions of Allied soldiers' wartime letters
36. Marine Gunnery Sergeant John Basilone - Raritan, New Jersey, native and recipient of the Medal of Honor for heroic action at the Battle of Guadalcanal - is one of the thousands to die during the Battle of Iwo Jima

Asiatic-Pacific Campaigns
World Events
The Allies fly a 530-mile long route over the Himalayas, known as the "Hump," to keep the Chinese Army supplied.

Feb. 9, 1943
Japanese resistance ends on Guadalcanal.

Mar. - June, 1943
In the battle of the Bismarck Sea, the U.S. breaks Japanese codes and B-25 Mitchell bombers destroy a large enemy confoy. In June, Operation Cartwheel isolates nearly 70,000 Japanese in Rabaul, New Britain, until wars end.

April 18, 1943
U.S. aircraft shoot down the plane carrying Japanese Fleet Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, the man chiefly responsible for the "sneak attack" on Perl Harbor.

May 31, 1943
U.S. captures Kiska, ending the Japanese occupation of the Aleutian Islands.

Nov. 1943-Aug. 1944
U.S. forces capture Makin Atoll and Tarawa Atoll, take Kwajalein Atoll and Eniwetok Atoll, and neutralize the major Japanese base at Truk in the Carolines.

June 15, 1944
U.S. forces land on Saipan in the offensive to retake the Mariana islands. The Battle of the Philippine Sea begins June 19, and in two days U.S. naval air and submarine forces shoot down some 375 Japanese aircraft and sink three enemy carriers.

March-Aug., 1944
"Merrill's Marauders" adopt guerilla tactics to harass the Japanese in northern Burma; the legendary elite unit includes Sioux and Japanese American troops.

July 17, 1944
Military defeats force the resignation of Prime Minister Hideki Tojo of Japan.

Sept. 15 - Nov. 27, 1944
U.S. Marines assault Peleliu Island and prevail after an unexpectedly brutal and lengthy campaign.

Oct. 23 - 26, 1944
The Battle of Leyte Gulf, the largest naval engagement in history, shatters the Imperial Japanese Navy and sinks the giant battleship Mushashi.

Dec. 9, 1944
The USAAF creates the 509th Composite Group. Col. Paul W. Tibbets leads the group to develop the means of delivering an atomic weapon by long-range bomber.

Jan. 20, 1945
U.S. Major General Curtis E. LEMay launches the first in a series of incendiary bomb attacks on sixty-four Japanese cities, including Kobe, Nagoya, Osaka, Yokahama, and Tokyo.

Feb. 19, 1945
Over 100,000 U.S. Marines and sailors invade Iwo Jima; they prevail in a ferocious thirty-six day battle that costs over 20,000 U.S. casualties. Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz memorializes the courage of the U.S. force with the statement "Uncommon valor was a common virtue."

Apr. 1 - June 22, 1945
U.S. forces invade Okinawa in the last major island campaign of the Pacific war. Over 12,500 U.S. servicemen are killed as 107,000 Japanese fight to the death. As the battle rages ashore, navy aircraft sink the massive Japanese battleship Yamato; the huge Allied fleet loses 30 ships, mostly to 1,900 kamikaze attacks.

July 16, 1945
The Manhattan Project tests the first atomic device in New Mexico.

Aug. 6-15, 1945
On August 6, the B-29 Superfortress Enola Gay drops the first atomic bomb, "Little Boy," on Hiroshima. On August 9, the B-29 Bockscar drops "Fat Man" on Nagasaki. Six days later the Japanese Emperor Hirohito broadcasts his country's surrender.

Sept. 2, 1945
The Allies accept the unconditional surrender of Japan aboard the battleship USS Missouri (BB-63) in Tokyo Bay. President Truman declares the date V-J Day (Victory over Japan Day).

New Jersey Events
Feb. 28, 1943
The Military Ocean Terminal at Bayonne (MOTBY) serves as a vast naval supply center. Ships carry goods from the terminal to every major U.S. military operation of World War II.

The destroyer USS Kidd (DD-661) sails from the Federal Shipbuilding & Drydock Company in Kearny. Already a leader in war-time production, the shipyard constructs nine large U.S. troop ships, each able to carry 5,000 troops.

May 1943
The USS New Jersey (BB-62) enters the war and ultimately serves as Elizabeth native Admiral William F. "Bull" Halsey's flagship in the Pacific Campaign.

Sept. 1943 - Aug., 1945
Air Group Thirty-one (VF-31) from Atlantic City is the first air fleet aboard the USS Cabot (CVL-28). It also flies missions from the USS Belleau Wood (CVL-24) until the war's end. Both carriers are products of Camden.

The U.S. military runs a literacy program in Atlantic City for Native Americans entering the service. Native Americans serve with distinction in units such as "Merrill's Marauders" and the code talkers.

The Picatinny Arsenal, the only U.S. facility producing ammunition larger than .50 caliber, employs up to 18,000 people and runs three shifts producing bombs and artillery shells.

Apr. 1, 1944
Bombing squadron Eighty-two begins service at the Naval Air Station in Wildwood. The squadron serves as the carrier USS Bennington's (CV-20) first air fleet, and attacks Tokyo and provides air support for the battles at Iwo Jima and Okinawa.

July - Oct. 1944
The light cruiser USS Trenton (CL-11) heads for duty in the Aleutian Islands. In October, the Trenton joins nine other warships in two sweeps of northern Kuril Islands, creating a diversion during the invasion of Leyte.

Oct. 24, 1944
A lone enemy dive bomber sinks the light carrier USS Princeton (CVL-23), east of Luzon, in the Sibuyan Sea during the Battle of Leyte Gulf. Of the 1,469 crewmembers, 1,361 survive. The Princeton, recipient of nine battle stars, was constructed in Camden.

Millville glass maker T.C. Wheaton Company supplies the military with plasma and water bottles, and, overcoming a metal scarcity, creates gauges and measuring devices from glass.

New York Shipbuilding Corporation of Camden supplies the U.S. Navy with twenty-six heavy combat ships, including the nine light aircraft carriers, two battle cruisers, and the battleship USS South Dakota (BB-57).

Aug. 6, 1945
Ridgefield Park resident Robert A. Lewis co-pilots the B-29 Enola Gay on its bomb run to Hiroshima.

Seabrook Farms of Pittsgrove, P.J. Ritter Cannery of Bridgeton, and New Jersey farmers supply the military with frozen, dehydrated, and fresh food, and overcome chronic labor shortages by hiring formerly detained Japanese Americans and German POWs.

As the war ends, 1,182,118 veterans complete their military service at Fort Dix.

Asiatic-Pacific Campaigns
1. American C-47 transport crossing the "Hump," a route through the Himalayas to China.
2. Aerial view of the new American base, established after the battle of Tarawa Atoll
3. The USS New Jersey lowering 16" guns after a fire mission
4. U.S. citizen Iva Toguri D'Aquino is detained in Japan and forced into becoming one of the several "Tokyo Rose" propaganda broadcasters at a Tokyo radio station
5. U.S. transport ship sailors heading to Hawaii
6. U.S. Marines on the beach at Iwo Jima
7. Two Lockheed P-38 Lighting fighters
8. A Liberty Ship - one of thousands representing U.S. wartime industrial might
9. Military grave markers
10. Assembly line at Picatinny Arsenal, N.J.
11. General MacArthur returning to the Philippines on October 20, 1944
12. Aircraft carrier USS Franklin (CV-13) burning and listing after massive damage and casualties
13. A U.S. Marine preparing to toss a grenade during invasion of Tarawa
14. American Avengers dropping bombs on Hakodate, Japan
15. Plasma bottles manufactured at T.C. Wheaton, Millville, N.J.
16. U.S. government poster telling Americans to buy war bonds
17. Japanese kamikaze plane moments before striking the USS Intrepid
18. "Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima" - iconic image of five U.S. Marines and a U.S. Navy corpsman raising the American flag on Mount Suribachi during the Battle of Iwo Jima
19. Japanese icon Mount Fuji's foothills and grasslands serving as military training areas and live-firing ranges
20. A 108th Fighter Group P-47 (Thunderbolt) take-off check
21. Sailor issuing a bugle call
22. A wartime cover of the popular Liberty magazine
23. The war's second atomic bomb - dropped on Nagasaki, Japan, August 9, 1945
24. Allied officers and crew crowding the decks of the USS Missouri as senior Japanese delegate mamoru Shigemitsu signs Japan's official surrender
25. The Enola Gay - the American B-29 bomber selected to drop the war's first atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan, August 6, 1945
26. Marine advancing on a Japanese machine gun emplacement in the Ryukyu Islands
27. "Couldn't Have Done It Without You!" poster
28. Citizens of Elizabeth, New Jersey, welcoming home native son Admiral ("Bull") Halsey
29. Crowd celebrating the news headline "Jap Radio Announces Complete Surrender"
30. New Jersey's Forty-fourth Division band members performing as the unit heads home on the USS General Gordon
31. A U.S. sailor and nurse ending the war with a kiss while thousands jam New York City's Times Square to celebrate the victory over Japan

European-African-Middle Eastern Campaigns
World Events
Sept. 1, 1939
German and Italian aggression culminates with the Nazi invasion of Poland.

Sept. 3, 1939
Britain, France, Australia, and New Zealand declare war on Germany.

May 10-12, 1940
Germany invades Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands, and France.

May 26, 1940
Allies begin evacuation from Dunkirk.

July-Oct. 1940
Battle of Britain rages over England.

Sept. 16, 1940
The Selective Service and Training Act, instituting the first peacetime draft, is enacted.

Sept. 1940 - May 1943
Axis and Allied armies struggle for control of North Africa<.

Nov. 15, 1940
Roosevelt is re-elected as U.S. president.

Mar. 11, 1941
Lend-Lease Act passes.

Jun. 22, 1941
Germany attacks the Soviet Union.

Dec. 8, 1941
The day after the attack on Pearl Harbor, the U.S. declares war on Pearl Harbor, the U.S. declares war on Japan; Germany and Italy declare war on the U.S. on December 11.

Jan. 13, 1942
Germany deploys U-boats (submarines) to attack U.S. coastal shipping.

Jan. 26, 1942
First U.S. troops arrive in Britain.

Apr. 18, 1942
U.S. east coast night-time blackouts begin.

Jun. 25, 1942
Eisenhower assumes command of U.S. forces in Europe.

Aug. 19, 1942
The Battle of Stalingrad begins.

Oct. 23 - Nov. 4, 1942
The British defeat Rommel's Afrika Korps at El-Alamein in Egypt.

Nov. 8, 1942
Operation Torch, the American invasion of North Africa begins.

New Jersey Events
Aug. 2, 1939
Albert Einstein, a faculty member at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, writes to President Roosevelt and warns that Nazis may be working on an atomic bomb.

New Jersey Governor Moore's civil defense committee reorganizes into the New Jersey Defense Council. Selective Service begins in New Jersey.

New Jersey National Guard federalizes; residents too young or old to join the armed forces are allowed to participate in civil defense.

Fall 1940
Rapidly building itself up under the impetus of the emergency defense program, Fort Dix is on its way to becoming the largest U.S. training center in World War II.

Federal shipyards in Kearny and Newark lead the nation in the production of destroyers, producing an auxiliary ship or destroyer every four and a half days.

Aug. 2, 1941
Millville Airport, "America's First Defense Airport," is dedicated by local, state, and federal officials.

Dec. 1., 1941
Conceived in the late 1930's by New Jersey aviation advocate Gil Robb Wilson, the Civil Air Patrol is established.

Jan. 19, 1942
Construction of Camp Kilmer begins in Edison and Piscataway.

Jan. 1942
German U-boats become a deadly problem off the New Jersey coastline.

The U.S. Coast Guard urges men, dogs, and horses to patrol New Jersey beaches.

The New Jersey Plan uses schools and other facilities to train 20,000 industrial supervisors per year.

May 15, 1942
Gasoline rationing begins in eastern United States.

Jul. 1942
First troop contingents leave Camp Kilmer for the European theater of operations.

A third of New Jersey women enter the work force; "Rosie the Riveter" becomes a reality in many N.J. defense industry plants.

The war effort shifts into high gear and the Garden State ultimately fills $12 billion in war contracts.

European-African-Middle Eastern Campaigns
1. Nazi wartime expansion
2. Famed film comic Charlie Chaplin satirizing Adolf Hitler in The Great Dictator
3. St. Paul's Cathedral withstanding the London blitz
4. London icons Westminster Abbey and Big Ben during war
5. Nazi troops marching through Warsaw, Poland
6. Nobel Prize winning physicist Albert Einstein - fled to the United States to escape Nazi oppression of the Jews
7. Einstein's famous letter warning President Roosevelt that the Nazis may be developing an atomic bomb
8. Artillery positioned along the New Jersey beach
9. Battery A Artillery, Camden, N.J.
10. Women's Army Corps (WAC) members swearing an oath of allegiance at Fort Hancock, N.J.
11. Panorama of Fort Dix, N.J.
12. A Royal Air Force Spitfire in action over the English coast
13. Women in war ravaged France
14. Nazi troops parading through the Arc de Triomphe in Paris
15. U.S. Army Air Force poster
16. The "Big Three" Allied leaders - from left to right, Stalin (U.S.S.R.), Roosevelt (U.S.), and Churchill (U.K.) - meeting for the first time in Tehran, Iran
17. U.S. Army military scout car at Fort Dix, N.J.
18. New Jersey's Governor A. Harry Moore signing the New Jersey National Guard's Forty-fourth Division into active duty.
19. U.S. Coast Guard K-9 patrol at Brigantine Beach, N.J.
20. Newark's Mayor Vincent J. Murphy's letter requesting enrollment in the Newark Defense Council
21. Allied ship convoy in the North Sea
22. A U.S. Coast Guard operated assault transport loading a Jeep into a landing craft
23. U.S. soldiers climbing cargo nets to disembark transport ship
24. Civil Air Patrol poster
25. Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Services (WAVES) reservists studying aircraft mechanics at Lakehurst, N.J.
26. Family food ration stamp
27. "Loose Lips" poster warning U.S. workers to keep silent regarding war effort activities
28. Military ship launching ceremony at New York Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Co., Camden, N.J.
29. U.S. Army Air Force soldiers preparing P-51 Mustang for combat
30. "Rosie the Riveter" poster celebrating women's contributions to the war effort
31. American troops parading down London's Fleet Street
32. Jeeps rolling off a Ford assembly line
33. U.S. Army Air Force soldier saying goodbye at New York City's Pennsylvania Station - just one of the millions of such wartime farewells.

European-African-Middle Eastern Campaigns
World Events
Feb. 2, 1943
Soviets defeat the German Sixth Army at Stalingrad. Nearly 300,000 troops are killed, injured, or captured.

Apr. 19, 1943
Jews in the Warsaw ghetto stage an unsuccessful uprising.

May 1943
Allied navies finally take command of the Atlantic, defeating the Nazi U-boat menace.

May 13, 1943
The last German and Italian troops in North Africa surrender.

June 1, 1943
The 99th Fighter Squadron, the famed Tuskegee Airmen and the first African American combat unit, enters the war in Italy.

July 5-23, 1943
In Russia, the Germans lose the Battle of Kursk, the largest land battle in history.

July 10-Sept. 9, 1943
Allied troops land in Sicily. Mussolini is arrested. The Italian facist government fails.

Nov. 28-Dec. 1, 1943
Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin meet at the Tehran Conference.

Jan. 22-June 5, 1944
The Allies land at Anzio, Italy; Rome is liberated on June 5.

Feb. 20, 1944
The Big Week Raids begin. Over 1,000 USAAF bombers attack vital industrial targets in Germany.

June 6, 1944
Preluded by General Eisenhower's declaration, "The eyes of the world are upon you," Operation Overlord, the Allied D-Day invasion of France, becomes the largest seaborne assault force ever assembled. A second European front is established by the end of the day. The cost is 9,000 casualties, nearly 3,000 of which are U.S. troops on Omaha Beach.

June 25-Aug. 22, 1944
U.S. troops launch Operation Cobra, break out of Normandy, and begin a rapid advance across France.

Aug. 25, 1944
The Red Ball Express begins a non-stop, eighty-two day supply effort that advances Patton's army toward Germany.

Aug. 25, 1944
The Allies liberate Paris.

Sept. 17, 1944
A daring Allied attempt to cross the Rhine at Arnhem in the largest airborne operation of the war, Operation Market Garden, fails with heavy casualties.

Dec. 16-28, 1944
The Battle of the Bulge, Hitler's last offensive, is the largest land battle fought by U.S. forces. Despite the horrific winter, outnumbered American forces prevail over the Nazi siege of Bastogne.

Feb. 4-11, 1945
Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin meet at Yalta.

Mar. 7, 1945
Troops of the U.S. First Army capture the Remagen Bridge and cross into Germany.

Apr. 12, 1945
President Roosevelt dies; Truman becomes president. The Allies liberate Buchenwald and Bergen-Belsen concentration camps.

Apr. 28, 1945
Italian partisans execute Mussolini; two days later Hitler commits suicide.

May 7, 1945
Germany surrenders unconditionally to the Allies; VE-Day (Victory in Europe) is declared the next day.

New Jersey Events
Jan. 1943
Millville Army Air Field opens as a gunnery school for fighter pilots. Over a three year period, 1,500 pilots receive advanced training in the Republic P-47 Thunderbolt.

As a protection from U-boat attacks, Sandy Hook Light is dimmed and painted in camouflage. Homes and businesses within five miles of the ocean are ordered to use blackout curtains.

June 1943
The Office of Price Administration in Newark mails New Jersey's first ration stamps.

Aug. 2, 1943
Construction begins on Naval Ammunition Depot Earl in Monmouth County.

The Naval Air Station Lakehurst becomes the country's "lighter-than-air" center. Hangars 5 and 6 are among the largest single-arch structures in the world.

In addition to parachutes, Trenton based Switlik Parachute Company makes the mannequin paratroopers that the Allies will drop on D-Day to confuse the Nazis.

Atlantic coast Nazi U-boat activity diminishes. One German submariner blames the action on "those darn little red and yellow planes" of the Civil Air Patrol, which nationally supports the U.S. military efforts with 173 U-boat sightings, fifty seven strikes with bombs and depth charges, and swo sinkings.

Jan. 1944
Rationing, saving stamps, scrap metal drives, and "victory gardens" abound across the state.

New Jersey ports and the U.S. Merchant Marines play critical roles in supplying the U.S. Navy and the Allies with personnel, supplies, and equipment needed to defeat the Axis powers. It takes seven to fifteen tons of supplies to support one soldier for one year.

Aug. 25, 1944
New Jersey's 102nd Cavalry Group, the famous Essex Troop from Newark, is the first to enter Paris. It is the only group known to be at the liberation of both Paris and Rome.

Aug. 27, 1944
Bayonne native Stephen R. Gregg displays gallantry above and beyond the call of duty. He saves his fellow soldiers, and kills and captures numerous enemy soldiers in action in France. He is one of nine New Jersey recipients of the Medal of Honor in the Atlantic theater.

Fort Dix is the processing center for 15,000 German, Italian, and other Axis POWs sent to U.S. based detention centers.

With one of its first openings in Trenton, the United Service Organization (USO) attracts thousands of New Jersey stationed servicemen and women. Over a four year period, the Trenton USO alone will have over 1.3 million visitors.

May 15, 1945
Upon learning of Germany's surrender, U-boat 858's Kapitan Thilo Bode contacts the U.S. Atlantic Fleet and surrenders his ship about 40 miles east of Cape May.

Fort Hancock's pre-war population of 800 swells to 12,000.

European-African-Middle Eastern Campaigns
1. Allied destroyer sinking Nazi U-boat
2. U.S. paratroopers jumping from a C-47 transport
3. U.S. Navy Reserve "lighter-than-air" ship at Lakehurst, N.J.
4. New Jersey highway bridge-patrol unit
5. U.S. Army Ranger Battalion marching over hilly terrain in North Africa
6. Government poster urging U.S. citizens to buy war bonds
7. Mounted U.S. Coast Guard unit patrolling New Jersey beach.
8. Fire Control Tower No. 23 near Cape May Point, N.J.
9. Battle engaged U.S. infantrymen crossing the Rhine in an assault boat.
10. Soldiers manning anti-aircraft guns at Sandy Hook, N.J.
11. Japanese American evacuees working at Seabrook Farms, a New Jersey producer of frozen vegetables.
12. American troops landing on Omaha Beach on D-Day
13. New Jersey's Sergeant Curtis Culin's modified tank for cutting through French hedgerows
14. American soldiers aiding wounded comrades
15. Soldier writing to loved ones back home
16. Newark Evening News war correspondence in the first Nazi vehicle captured in Normandy, France
17. Anti-aircraft guns at Sandy Hook, N.J.
18. New Jersey soldiers celebrating the First Army's triumphs
19. U.S. poster urging citizens to grow food
20. U.S. soldiers from the 290th Regiment at the Battle of the Bulge
21. U.S. First Army taking control of the Remagen Bridge and establishing a bridgehead across the Rhine
22. Baseball legend and Montclair, New Jersey, resident Yogi Berra is one of the numerous participants in the D-Day invasion at Omaha Beach
23. Bayonne, New Jersey, resident Stephen Raymond Gregg, Sr., (right) receiving the Medal of Honor
24. Trenton made TBM Avengers
25. Medic and army nurses treating a critically wounded soldier at Anzio, Italy
26. Grateful Italian woman kissing an American soldier during Italy's liberation
27. Algerian crowd cheering American soldiers in North Africa
28. Concentration camp survivors liberated by the U.S. Eightieth Division at Buchenwald
29. The twenty-one Nazi defendants at the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, Germany
30. New Jerseys 102d Cavalry Group liberating paris
31. Americans celebrating V-E Day
32. Servicemen cheering Hitler's death
33. U.S. troops heading home on the Queen Mary
34. U.S. Sixth ARmored Division vehicles passing Nazi POW's on the autobahn near Giessen, Germany

Erected by State of New Jersey.
Topics and series. This memorial is listed in this topic list: War, World II. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #32 Franklin D. Roosevelt, the Former U.S. Presidents: #33 Harry S. Truman, the Former U.S. Presidents: #34 Dwight D. Eisenhower, the Former U.S. Presidents: #35 John F. Kennedy, the Former U.S. Presidents: #41 George H.W. Bush, and the Medal of Honor Recipients series lists.
Location. 40° 13.27′ N, 74° 46.186′ W. Marker is in Trenton, New Jersey, in Mercer County. Memorial is on West State Street 0.1 miles west of North Willow Street, on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 125 W State St, Trenton NJ 08608, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Veterans Memorial (a few steps from this marker); The Archives of the State (within shouting distance of this marker); State House (within shouting distance of this marker); The Story of Trenton (within shouting distance of this marker); Old Steel Mill (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Petty's Run (about 300 feet away); The Trenton Steel Works (about 400 feet away); West Front Street (about 400 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Trenton.
Also see . . .  World War II Memorial at Veterans Park. State of New Jersey's profile of the memorial (Submitted on November 17, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.) 
Additional comments.
1. Language use in the marker
The use of certain language that is considered pejorative has been taken verbatim from the marker and was used in a historical context.
    — Submitted November 17, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.
Credits. This page was last revised on November 17, 2020. It was originally submitted on November 16, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 47 times since then and 6 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on November 16, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.
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Feb. 26, 2021