Background to the schools Wikipedia
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|Centuries:||19th century – 20th century – 21st century|
|Decades:||1910s 1920s 1930s – 1940s – 1950s 1960s 1970s|
|Years:||1941 1942 1943 – 1944 – 1945 1946 1947|
|1944 by topic:|
|Birth and death categories|
|Establishments and disestablishments categories|
|Works and introductions categories|
|Ab urbe condita||2697|
|British Regnal year||8 Geo. 6 – 9 Geo. 6|
|Chinese calendar|| 癸未年十二月初六日
— to —甲申年十一月十七日
|- Vikram Samvat||2000–2001|
|- Shaka Samvat||1866–1867|
|- Kali Yuga||5045–5046|
|- Ǹrí Ìgbò||944–945|
|Japanese calendar|| Shōwa 19
|Julian calendar||Gregorian minus 13 days|
|Minguo calendar||ROC 33
|Thai solar calendar||2487|
Year 1944 (MCMXLIV) was a leap year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar.
Below, events of World War II have the "WWII" prefix.
- January 2 – WWII: Free French General Jean de Lattre de Tassigny is appointed to command French Army B, part of the Sixth United States Army Group in North Africa.
- January 4 – WWII: The Battle of Monte Cassino begins in Italy.
- January 5 – The Daily Mail becomes the first transoceanic newspaper.
- January 8 – WWII: Philippine Commonwealth troops enter the province of Ilocos Sur in northern Luzon and attack Japanese forces.
- January 11
- January 12 – Winston Churchill and Charles De Gaulle begin a 2-day wartime conference in Marrakech.
- January 14 – WWII: Soviet troops start the offensive at Leningrad and Novgorod.
- January 15
- WWII: The 27th Polish Home Army Infantry Division is re-created, marking the start of Operation Tempest by the Polish Home Army.
- An earthquake hits San Juan, Argentina, killing an estimated 10,000 people in the worst natural disaster in the country's history.
- January 17 – WWII:
- British forces in Italy cross the Garigliano River.
- Meat rationing ends in Australia.
- The Soviet Union ceases production of the Mosin-Nagant 1891/30 sniper rifle.
- January 20 – WWII:
- The Royal Air Force drops 2,300 tons of bombs on Berlin.
- The United States 36th Infantry Division, in Italy, attempts to cross the Rapido River.
- January 22 – WWII: Operation Shingle: The Allies begin the assault on Anzio, Italy. The U.S. 45th Infantry Division stands their ground at Anzio against violent assaults for 4 months.
- January 27 – WWII: The 2-year Siege of Leningrad is lifted.
- January 29 – WWII: The Battle of Cisterna takes place.
- January 29 – WWII: HMS Spartan (95) is sunk by a Henschel Hs 293 guided missile from a German aircraft off Anzio, western Italy.
- January 30 – WWII: United States troops invade Majuro, Marshall Islands.
- January 31 – WWII: Battle of Kwajalein: American forces land on Kwajalein Atoll and other islands in the Japanese-held Marshall Islands.
- February 1 – WWII: United States troops land in the Marshall Islands.
- February 2 – The first issue of Human Events is published in Washington, D.C..
- February 3 – WWII: United States troops capture the Marshall Islands.
- February 7 – WWII: At Anzio, Italian forces launch a counteroffensive.
- February 14 – WWII: An anti-Japanese revolt breaks out on Java.
- February 15 – WWII – Battle of Monte Cassino: The monastery atop Monte Cassino is destroyed by Allied bombing.
- February 17 – WWII: The Battle of Eniwetok Atoll begins; it ends in an American victory on February 22.
- February 20 – WWII:
- The "Big Week" begins with American bomber raids on German aircraft manufacturing centers.
- The United States takes Eniwetok Island.
- February 22 – United States Strategic Air Forces in Europe organized from the Eighth Air Force's strategic planning staff; subsuming strategic planning for all US Army Air Forces in Europe and Africa.
- February 23 – WWII: The Chechens and Ingush are forcibly deported to Central Asia.
- February 26
- Kurt Gerron begins shooting the Nazi propaganda film Theresienstadt in Theresienstadt concentration camp. He and many others who feature in it are transferred to Auschwitz and gassed on its completion.
- First woman appointed to the substantive rank of captain in the United States Navy Nurse Corps, Sue S. Dauser.
- February 29 – WWII – Battle of Los Negros and Operation Brewer: U.S. forces land on the Admiralty Islands.
- WWII: The Japanese launch an offensive in central and south China.
- Austrian-born economist Friedrich Hayek publishes his book The Road to Serfdom (in London).
- March 1 – WWII:
- USS Tarawa (CV-40) and USS Kearsarge (CV-33) are laid down.
- An anti-fascist strike begins in northern Italy.
- March 2
- Balvano train disaster: A train stalls inside a railway tunnel outside Salerno, Italy; 521 choke to death.
- The 16th Academy Awards ceremony is held, the first Oscar ceremony held at a large public venue, Grauman’s Chinese Theatre in Hollywood. Casablanca (directed by Michael Curtiz), wins the Best Picture award.
- March 3 – WWII: The Order of Nakhimov and the Order of Ushakov are instituted in the USSR.
- March 4 – In Ossining, New York, Louis Buchalter, the leader of 1930s crime syndicate Murder, Inc., is executed at Sing Sing, along with Emanuel Weiss, and Louis Capone.
- March 6 – WWII: Soviet Army planes attack Narva, Estonia, destroying almost the entire old town.
- March 9 – WWII: Soviet Army planes attack Tallinn, Estonia.
- March 10
- In Britain, the prohibition on married women working as teachers is lifted.
- Resistance leader Joop Westerweel is arrested while returning to the Netherlands having escorted a group of Jewish children to safety in Spain.
- March 12 – WWII: The Political Committee of National Liberation is created in Greece.
- March 15
- WWII: Battle of Monte Cassino: Allied aircraft bomb the German-held monastery and an assault is staged.
- WWII: The National Council of the French Resistance approves the Resistance programme.
- In Sweden, the law of 1864 that criminalizes homosexuality is abolished.
- March 17 – WWII: The Nazis execute almost 400 prisoners, Soviet citizens and anti-fascist Romanians at Rîbniţa.
- March 19 – WWII: German forces occupy Hungary in Operation Margarethe.
- March 18 – The last eruption of Mount Vesuvius in Italy kills 26 and causes thousands to flee their homes.
- March 20 – WWII: RAF Flight Sergeant Nicholas Alkemade's bomber is hit over Germany, and he has to bail out without a parachute from a height of over 4,000 meters. Tree branches interrupt his fall and he lands safely on deep snow.
- March 23 – WWII: Members of the Italian Resistance attack Nazis marching in Via Rasella, killing 33.
- March 24 – WWII:
- Ardeatine massacre: 335 Italians are killed, including 75 Jews and over 200 members of the Italian Resistance from various groups, in Rome.
- In the Polish village of Markowa, German police kill Józef and Wiktoria Ulm, their six children and eight Jews they were hiding.
- The "Great Escape": 76 Royal Air Force prisoners of war escape by tunnel "Harry" from Stalag Luft III this night. Only three return to the UK; of those recaptured, fifty are executed.
- April 2 – WWII: Ascq massacre members of the 12th SS Panzer Division Hitlerjugend shoot 85 civilians suspected of blowing up their train on its approach to the Gare d'Ascq in France.
- April 4 – WWII: An Allied surveillance aircraft photographs part of Auschwitz concentration camp.
- April 5 – Rudolf Vrba and Alfred Wetzler escape from Auschwitz-Birkenhau.
- April 25 – The United Negro College Fund is incorporated in the U.S.
- April 26 – Kidnap of General Kreipe on Crete, Greece.
- April 28 – WWII: Allied convoy T4, forming part of amphibious Exercise Tiger (a full-scale rehearsal for the Normandy landings) in Start Bay off the Devon coast of England, is attacked by E-boats, resulting in the deaths of 749 American servicemen from LSTs.
- May – No Exit published by Jean-Paul Sartre.
- May 5 – WWII: Mohandas Gandhi is released in India.
- May 9 – WWII: In the Ukrainian city of Sevastopol, Soviet troops completely drive out German forces, who had been ordered by Hitler to “fight to the last man.”
- May 12 – WWII: Soviet troops finalize the liberation of the Crimea.
- May 18 – WWII:
- Battle of Monte Cassino: The Germans evacuate Monte Cassino and Allied forces take the stronghold after a struggle that has claimed 20,000 lives.
- The Crimean Tatars are deported by the Soviet Union.
- May 24 – WWII: Six LSTs are accidentally destroyed and 163 men killed in Pearl Harbour's West Loch Disaster.
- May 30 – Princess Charlotte Louise Juliette Louvet Grimaldi of Monaco, heir to the throne, resigns from her rights in favour of her son Prince Rainier Louis Henri Maxence Bertrand Grimaldi, later reigning Prince Rainier III of Monaco.
- May 31 – WWII: Destroyer escort USS England (DE-635) sinks the sixth Japanese submarine in two weeks. This anti-submarine warfare performance remains unmatched through the twentieth century.
- June 1
- WWII: The BBC transmits a coded message (the first line of the poem " Chanson d'automne" by Paul Verlaine) to the French Resistance, warning that the invasion of Europe is imminent.
- Two K-class blimps of the United States Navy complete the first transatlantic crossing by non-rigid airships, from the U.S. to French Morocco with two stops.
- June 2 – WWII: The provisional French government is established.
- June 4 – WWII:
- Rome falls to the Allies, the first Axis capital to fall.
- A hunter-killer group of the United States Navy captures the German submarine U-505, marking the first time a U.S. Navy vessel has captured an enemy vessel at sea since the 19th century.
- June 5 – WWII:
- The German navy's Enigma messages are decoded almost in real time.
- British Group Captain James Stagg correctly forecasts a brief improvement in weather conditions over the English Channel which will permit the following day's Normandy landings to take place (having been deferred from today due to unfavourable weather).
- At 10:15 p.m. local time, the BBC transmits the second line of the Paul Verlaine poem to the French Resistance, indicating that the invasion of Europe is about to begin.
- More than 1,000 British bombers drop 5,000 tons of bombs on German gun batteries on the Normandy coast in preparation for D-Day.
- US and British paratrooper divisions jump over Normandy, in preparation for D-Day, including 82nd and 101st Airborne divisions of the United States.
- June 6 – WWII – D-Day for the Normandy landings: 155,000 Allied troops shipped from England land on the beaches of Normandy in northern France, beginning Operation Overlord and the Invasion of Normandy. The Allied soldiers quickly break through the Atlantic Wall and push inland, in the largest amphibious military operation in history. This operation helps liberate France from Germany, and also weakens the Nazi hold on Europe.
- June 7 – WWII:
- June 9 – WWII: Soviet leader Joseph Stalin launches the Vyborg–Petrozavodsk Offensive against Finland, with the intent of defeating Finland before pushing for Berlin.
- June 10 – WWII: 642 men, women and children are killed in the Oradour-sur-Glane Massacre in France.
- June 13 – WWII: Germany launches the first V-1 Flying Bomb attack on London.
- June 15 – WWII: Battle of Saipan: United States forces land on Saipan.
- June 17 – Iceland declares full independence from Denmark.
- June 19 – A severe storm badly damages the Mulberry harbours on the Normandy coast.
- June 22 – WWII:
- June 25 – WWII: The Battle of Tali-Ihantala (the largest battle ever in the Nordic countries) begins between Finnish and Soviet troops. Finland is able to resist the attack and thus manages to stay as an independent nation.
- June 26 – WWII: American troops enter Cherbourg.
- June 29 – The Holocaust – The deportation of Hungarian Jews to Auschwitz and other Nazi concentration camps begins.
- July 1 – The United Nations Monetary and Financial Conference begins at Bretton Woods, New Hampshire.
- July 3 – WWII:
- Soviet troops liberate Minsk.
- Battle of Imphal: Japanese forces call off their advance, ending the battle with a British victory.
- July 6
- Hartford circus fire: More than 100 children die in one of the worst fire disasters in the history of the United States.
- WWII: At Camp Hood, Texas, future baseball star and 1st Lt. Jackie Robinson is arrested and later court-martialed for refusing to move to the back of a segregated U.S. Army bus. He is eventually acquitted.
- July 9 – WWII: British and Canadian forces capture Caen.
- July 10 – WWII: Soviet troops begin operations to occupy the Baltic countries.
- July 12 – Laurence Olivier's film Henry V, based on Shakespeare's play, opens in London. It is the most acclaimed and the most successful movie version of a Shakespeare play made up to that time, and the first in Technicolor. Olivier both stars and directs.
- July 13 – WWII: Vilnius is occupied by USSR.
- July 16 – WWII: The first contingent of the Brazilian Expeditionary Force arrives in Italy.
- July 17 – WWII:
- The largest convoy of the war embarks from Halifax, Nova Scotia, under Royal Canadian Navy protection.
- The SS E. A. Bryan, loaded with ammunition, explodes at the Port Chicago naval base; 320 are killed.
- July 18 – WWII:
- American forces push back the Germans in St. Lo, capturing the city.
- British forces launch Operation Goodwood, an armoured offensive aimed at driving the Germans from the high ground to the south of Caen. The offensive ends 2 days later with only minimal gains.
- Hideki Tōjō resigns as Prime Minister of Japan due to numerous setbacks in the war effort and is succeeded (on July 22) by Kuniaki Koiso.
- July 20 – WWII: Adolf Hitler survives an assassination attempt by Claus von Stauffenberg.
- July 21 – WWII:
- Battle of Guam: American troops land on Guam (the battle ends August 10).
- The Polish Committee of National Liberation is created.
- July 22
- The Bretton Woods Conference ends with agreements signed to set up the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade and International Monetary Fund.
- United States v. Masaaki Kuwabara, the only Japanese American draft avoidance case to be dismissed on a due process violation of the U.S. Constitution.
- July 25 – WWII – Operation Spring: One of the bloodiest days for Canadian forces during the war results in 1,550 casualties, including 450 killed, during the Normandy Campaign.
- July 26 – WWII: A Messerschmitt Me 262 becomes the first jet fighter aircraft to have an operational victory.
- August 1 – WWII: The Warsaw Uprising begins.
- August 2 – WWII:
- Turkey ends diplomatic and economic relations with Germany.
- The First Assembly of ASNOM (the Anti-Fascist Assembly for the People's Liberation of Macedonia) is held in the Prohor Pčinjski monastery.
- August 3 – The Education Act in the United Kingdom, promoted by Rab Butler, creates a Tripartite System of secondary education.
- August 4 – The Holocaust: A tip from a Dutch informer leads the Gestapo to a sealed-off area in an Amsterdam warehouse, where they find Jewish diarist Anne Frank, her family, and others in hiding. All would die in the Holocaust except for Otto Frank, Anne's father.
- August 5
- The Holocaust: Polish insurgents liberate a German labor camp in Warsaw, freeing 348 Jewish prisoners.
- WWII: Cowra breakout: Over 500 Japanese prisoners of war attempt a mass breakout from the Cowra camp in Australia. In the ensuing manhunt, 231 Japanese escapees and four Australian soldiers are killed.
- August 7 – IBM dedicates the first program-controlled calculator, the Automatic Sequence Controlled Calculator (known best as the Harvard Mark I).
- August 9 – The United States Forest Service and the Wartime Advertising Council release posters featuring Smokey Bear for the first time.
- August 12 – WWII:
- The Allies capture Florence, Italy.
- Operation Pluto: The world's first undersea oil pipeline is laid between England and France.
- August 15 – WWII: Operation Dragoon lands Allies in southern France. The U.S. 45th Infantry Division participates in its fourth assault landing at Sainte-Maxime, spearheading the drive for the Belfort Gap.
- August 18 – WWII: Submarine USS Rasher (SS-269) sinks Teia Maru, Eishin Maru, Teiyu Maru, and carrier Taiyō from Japanese convoy HI71 in one of the most effective American " wolfpack" attacks of the war.
- August 19 – WWII: An insurrection starts in Paris.
- August 20 – WWII:
- August 21 – Dumbarton Oaks Conference (Washington Conversations on International Peace and Security Organization) opens in Washington, D.C.: U.S., British, Chinese, French and Soviet representatives meet to plan the foundation of the United Nations.
- August 22 – WWII: Tsushima Maru, a Japanese unmarked passenger/cargo ship, is sunk by torpedoes launched by the submarine USS Bowfin (SS-287) off Akuseki-jima, killing 1,484 civilians including 767 schoolchildren.
- August 23 – WWII: Ion Antonescu, prime minister of Romania, is arrested and a new government established. Romania leaves the war against the Soviet Union, joining the Allies.
- August 24 – WWII:
- Liberation of Paris: The Allies enter Paris, successfully completing Operation Overlord.
- Japanese vessels attack and sink the submarine USS Harder (SS-257) off Luzon.
- August 25 – WWII:
- German surrender of Paris: General Dietrich von Choltitz surrenders Paris to the Allies in defiance of Hitler’s orders to destroy it.
- Maillé massacre: Massacre of 129 civilians (70% women and children) by the Gestapo at Maillé, Indre-et-Loire.
- Hungary decides to continue the war together with Germany.
- August 29 – WWII: The Slovak National Uprising against the Axis powers begins.
- August 31 – The Mad Gasser of Mattoon apparently resumes their mysterious attacks in Mattoon, Illinois for 2 weeks.
- September 1 – WWII: In Bulgaria, the Bagryanov government resigns.
- September 2
- September 3 – WWII: The Allies liberate Brussels.
- September 4 – WWII:
- The British 11th Armoured Division liberates the city of Antwerp in Belgium.
- Finland breaks off relations with Germany.
- September 5 – WWII: The Soviet Union declares war on Bulgaria.
- September 7 – WWII: The Belgian government in exile returns to Brussels from London.
- September 8 – WWII:
- The first V-2 rocket attack on London takes place.
- The French town of Menton is liberated from German forces.
- September 9 – WWII: An insurrection breaks out in Sofia.
- September 12 – WWII: Allied forces from Operation Overlord (in the north) and Operation Dragoon (in the south of France) link up near Dijon.
- September 14 – The Great Atlantic Hurricane makes landfall in the New York City area.
- September 15 – WWII: The Battle of Peleliu begins in the Pacific.
- September 17 – WWII: Operation Market Garden begins, Allied airborne landings in the Netherlands and Germany.
- September 19 – WWII: An armistice between Finland and the Soviet Union is signed, ending the Continuation War.
- September 20 – WWII: Jüri Uluots, prime minister in capacity of president of Estonia, escapes to Sweden; 2 days later, Tallinn is taken by the Red Army.
- September 24 – WWII: The U.S. 45th Infantry Division takes the strongly defended city of Epinal before crossing the Moselle River and entering the western foothills of the Vosges.
- September 26 – WWII:
- Operation Market Garden ends in an Allied withdrawal.
- On the middle front of the Gothic Line, Brazilian troops control the Serchio valley region after 10 days of fighting.
- September – Start of Dutch famine ("Hongerwinter") in the occupied northern part of the Netherlands.
- October 2 – Holocaust: Nazi troops end the Warsaw Uprising.
- October 5 – WWII: Royal Canadian Air Force pilots shoot down the first German jet fighter over Holland.
- October 6 – WWII: The Battle of Debrecen starts on the Eastern Front (it lasts until October 29).
- October 7
- Holocaust: Members of the Extermination camp Sonderkommando (Jewish work units) in Auschwitz stage a revolt, killing more than seventy SS men before being massacred themselves.
- Dumbarton Oaks Conference concludes.
- October 8 – The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet radio show debuts in the United States.
- October 9 – WWII: Fourth Moscow Conference: British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Soviet Premier Joseph Stalin begin a 9-day conference in Moscow to discuss the future of Europe.
- October 10 – The Holocaust/ Porajmos: 800 Romani children are systematically murdered at the Auschwitz concentration camp.
- October 12
- WWII: The Allies land in Athens.
- Canadian Arctic explorer Henry Larsen returns to Vancouver, becoming the first person successfully to navigate the Northwest Passage in both directions, in the RCMP schooner St. Roch. His westbound voyage is the first completed in a single season and the first passage through the Prince of Wales Strait.
- October 13 – WWII: Riga, the capital of Latvia, is taken by the Red Army.
- October 14 – WWII: German Field Marshal Erwin Rommel commits suicide rather than face execution for allegedly conspiring against Adolf Hitler.
- October 18 – WWII: The Volkssturm Nazi militia is founded on Hitler's orders.
- October 20 – WWII:
- Belgrade is liberated by Yugoslav Partisans and the Red Army.
- American forces land on Red Beach in Palo, Leyte, as General Douglas MacArthur returns to the Philippines with Philippine Commonwealth president Sergio Osmeña, and Armed Forces of the Philippines Generals Basilio J. Valdes and Carlos P. Romulo.
- United States and Filipino troops with Filipino guerillas begin the Battle of Leyte.
- American forces land on the beaches in Dulag, Leyte, the Philippines, accompanied by Filipino troops entering the town, and fiercely opposed by the Japanese occupation forces. The combined forces liberate Tacloban.
- October 20 – A liquefied natural gas explosion destroys a square mile (2.6 km²) of Cleveland, Ohio.
- October 21 – WWII: Aachen, the first German city to fall, is captured by American troops.
- October 23
- October 25
- October 30
- October 31 – Mass murderer Marcel Petiot is apprehended at a Paris Métro station.
- November 1– December 7 – Delegates of 52 nations meet at the International Civil Aviation Conference in Chicago to plan for postwar international cooperation, framing the constitution of the International Civil Aviation Organization.
- November 3 – WWII: Two supreme commanders of the Slovak National Uprising, Generals Ján Golian and Rudolf Viest, are captured, tortured and later executed by German forces.
- November 7
- United States presidential election: Franklin D. Roosevelt wins reelection over Republican challenger Thomas E. Dewey, becoming the only U.S. president elected to a fourth term.
- Election day rail accident in Puerto Rico: A passenger train derails at Aguadilla due to excessive speed on a downgrade; 16 are killed, 50 injured.
- November 10 – WWII: Ammunition ship USS Mount Hood (AE-11) disintegrates from accidental detonation of 3800 tons of cargo in the Seeadler Harbour fleet anchorage at Manus Island. 22 small boats are destroyed, 36 nearby ships damaged, 432 men are killed and 371 more are injured.
- November 12 – WWII: Sinking of the German battleship Tirpitz by British Royal Air Force Lancaster bombers.
- November 18 – The Popular Socialist Youth is founded in Cuba
- November 22 – Conscription Crisis: Prime Minister of Canada William Mackenzie King agrees a one-time conscription levy in Canada for overseas service.
- November 27 – RAF Fauld explosion: Between 3,450 and 3,930 tons (3,500 and 4,000 tonnes) of ordnance explodes at an underground storage depot in Staffordshire, England, leaving about 75 dead and a crater 1,200 metres (0.75 miles) across and 120 metres (400 ft) deep. The blast is one of the largest non-nuclear explosions in history and the largest on UK soil.
- November 29 – WWII: Submarine USS Archer-Fish (SS-311) sinks Japanese aircraft carrier Shinano. Shinano is the largest carrier built to this date, and will remain through the twentieth century the largest ship sunk by a submarine.
- December 3 – WWII:
- Fighting breaks out between Communists and royalists in newly liberated Greece, eventually leading to a full-scale Greek Civil War.
- The British Home Guard is stood down.
- December 7 – Convention on International Civil Aviation signed in Chicago to create the International Civil Aviation Organization.
- December 10 – Legendary Italian conductor Arturo Toscanini leads a concert performance of the first half of Beethoven's Fidelio (minus its spoken dialogue) on NBC Radio, starring Rose Bampton. He chooses this opera for its political message – a statement against tyranny and dictatorship. Conducting it in German, Toscanini intends it as a tribute to the German people who are being oppressed by Hitler. The second half is broadcast a week later. The performance is later released on LP and CD, the first of 7 operas that Toscanini conducts on radio.
- December 12– December 13 – WWII: British units attempt to take the hilltop town of Tossignano, but are repulsed.
- December 13 – Battle of Mindoro: United States, Australian and Philippine Commonwealth troops land on Mindoro Island in the Philippines.
- December 14
- The Soviet government changes Turkish place names to Russian in the Crimea.
- United States release of the film National Velvet which brings a young Elizabeth Taylor to stardom.
- December 15 – A private airplane carrying bandleader Glenn Miller disappears in heavy fog over the English Channel while flying to Paris.
- December 16 – WWII:
- Germany begins the Ardennes offensive, later known as Battle of the Bulge.
- General George C. Marshall becomes the first U.S. Five-Star General.
- December 17 – WWII: Malmedy massacre: German SS troops under Joachim Peiper machine gun American prisoners of war captured during the Battle of the Bulge near Malmedy and elsewhere in Belgium.
- December 19 – The entire territory of Estonia is taken by the Red Army.
- December 20 – The U.S. Women Airforce Service Pilots are disbanded.
- December 22
- WWII: Brigadier General Anthony C. McAuliffe, commander of the U.S. forces defending Bastogne, refuses to accept demands for surrender by sending a one-word reply, "Nuts!", to the German command.
- The Vietnam People's Army is formed in Vietnam.
- December 24
- WWII: The Bulge reaches its deepest point at Celles.
- WWII: Troopship SS Leopoldville is sunk in the English Channel by German submarine U-486. 763 soldiers of the U.S. 66th Infantry Division bound for the Battle of the Bulge drown.
- The first complete U.S. production of Tchaikovsky's ballet The Nutcracker is presented in San Francisco, choreographed by William Christensen. It will become an annual tradition there, and for the next ten years, the San Francisco Ballet will be the only company in the United States performing the complete work.
- December 26
- WWII: American troops repulse German forces at Bastogne.
- The original stage version of The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams premieres on Broadway.
- December 30
- Edward Stettinius, Jr., becomes the last United States Secretary of State of the Roosevelt administration, filling the seat left by Cordell Hull.
- King George II of Greece declares a regency, leaving his throne vacant.
- " Stage Door Cartoon" was the first cartoon to be produced by Eddie Selzer.
- December 31 – WWII:
- Hungary declares war on Nazi Germany.
- Battle of Leyte: Tens of thousands of Imperial Japanese Army soldiers are killed in action, in a significant Filipino and Allied military victory.
- The 1944 Summer Olympics, scheduled for London (together with the February Winter Olympics scheduled for Cortina d'Ampezzo in Italy), are suspended due to WWII.
- Swedish children's author Astrid Lindgren publishes her first book, Pippi Longstocking.
- In Sweden, Erik Wallenberg and Ruben Rausing invent a way to package milk in paper and start the company Tetra Pak.
- Hans Asperger publishes his paper on Asperger syndrome.
- The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence is established in the United States.
- Last known evidence for the existence of the Asiatic lion in the wild in Iran ( Khuzestan Province).
- January 1
- Omar Hasan Ahmad al-Bashir, President of the Sudan
- Bob Minor, American actor and stunt performer
- January 2 – Prince Norodom Ranariddh, Cambodian politician
- January 3 – Chris von Saltza, American swimmer
- January 6
- Bonnie Franklin, American actress and television director (d. 2013)
- Rolf M. Zinkernagel, Swiss immunologist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine
- January 9
- January 12 – Joe Frazier, American boxer (d. 2011)
- January 17
- Jan Guillou, Swedish author
- Françoise Hardy, French singer
- January 18 – Paul Keating, 24th Prime Minister of Australia
- January 19 – Shelley Fabares, American actress and singer
- January 23 – Rutger Hauer, Dutch actor
- January 24 – Klaus Nomi, German singer (died 1983)
- January 25 – Anita Pallenberg, Italian model and actress
- January 26 – Angela Davis, American feminist and activist
- January 27
- January 28
- Susan Howard, American actress
- John Tavener, British composer
- January 29
- Susana Giménez, TV presenter Argentina
- Patrick Lipton Robinson, Jamaican judge
- January 31
- Connie Booth, American writer and actress
- Ivo Opstelten, Dutch politician
- February 2 – Geoffrey Hughes, English actor (d. 2012)
- February 3
- Dave Davies, British rock musician ( The Kinks)
- Trisha Noble, Australian singer and actress
- February 5 – Al Kooper, American rock musician ( Blood, Sweat & Tears)
- February 9 – Alice Walker, American writer
- February 10 – Vernor Vinge, American writer
- February 11 – Michael G. Oxley, American politician
- February 12 – Moe Bandy, American country music singer
- February 13
- Stockard Channing, American actress
- Michael Ensign, American actor
- Jerry Springer, English-born American politician and television personality
- February 14
- Carl Bernstein, American journalist
- Alan Parker, English film director, producer, actor and writer
- February 16
- Richard Ford, American writer
- Antonio Mascarenhas Monteiro, President of Cape Verde
- February 17 – Karl Jenkins, Welsh composer
- February 20 – Willem van Hanegem, Dutch football player and coach
- February 22
- Jonathan Demme, American film director, producer and writer
- Tom Okker, Dutch tennis player
- February 23 – Johnny Winter, American rock musician
- February 27 – Ken Grimwood, American writer (d. 2003)
- February 28 – Sepp Maier, German footballer
- February 29 – Dennis Farina, American actor
February 25 Francois Cevert (d 1973)
- March 1
- John Breaux, U.S. Senator from Louisiana
- Roger Daltrey, English singer-songwriter and actor (The Who)
- March 2 – Uschi Glas, German actress
- March 4
- Harvey Postlethwaite, British engineer and race car designer (d. 1999)
- Bobby Womack, American singer and songwriter
- March 5 – Peter Brandes, Danish artist
- March 6
- Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, New Zealand soprano
- Mary Wilson, American singer (The Supremes)
- March 8 – Buzz Hargrove, Canadian labour leader
- March 11 – Don Maclean, English comedian
- March 17 – John Sebastian, American singer and songwriter ( The Lovin' Spoonful) Pattie Boyd Model and George Harrison's first wife.
- March 19
- Said Musa, Prime Minister of Belize
- Sirhan Sirhan, Palestinian assassin of Robert F. Kennedy
- March 21 – Hilary Minster, English actor (d. 1999)
- March 24 – R. Lee Ermey, U.S. Marine and actor
- March 26 – Diana Ross, American singer (The Supremes)
- March 27 – Khosrow Shakibai, Iranian actor (d. 2008)
- March 28
- Rick Barry, American basketball player
- Ken Howard, American actor
- March 29 – Denny McLain, American baseball player
- April 3 – Tony Orlando, American musician
- April 4 – Magda Aelvoet, Belgian politician
- April 5 – Peter T. King, American politician
- April 6
- Judith McConnell, American actress
- Dame Felicity Palmer, English soprano
- April 7 – Gerhard Schröder, former Chancellor of Germany
- April 8
- Odd Nerdrum, Norwegian painter
- Jimmy Walker, American professional basketball player (d. 2007)
- April 11 – John Milius, American film director, producer and screenwriter
- April 13 – Jack Casady, American rock musician ( Jefferson Airplane, Hot Tuna)
- April 15 – Dzhokhar Dudayev, Chechen leader, first President of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria, an unrecognized breakaway state in the North Caucasus (d. 1996)
- April 18 – Charlie Tuna, American disc jockey and game show announcer
- April 19 – James Heckman, American economist, Nobel Prize laureate
- April 22 – Steve Fossett, American aviator, sailor and millionaire adventurer (d. 2007)
- April 24 – Tony Visconti, American record producer, musician and singer
- April 25 – Len Goodman, British ballroom dancer and television personality
- April 26 – Larry H. Miller, American sports owner ( Utah Jazz; d. 2009)
- April 27
- Michael Fish, British TV weatherman
- Cuba Gooding, Sr., American actor/singer
- April 28 – Jean-Claude Van Cauwenberghe, Belgian politician
- April 29 – Richard Kline, American actor and television director
- April 30 – Jill Clayburgh, American actress (d. 2010)
- May 1 – Suresh Kalmadi, Indian politician
- May 5 – John Rhys-Davies, Welsh actor
- May 8 – Gary Glitter, English singer
- May 9
- Richie Furay, American musician ( Poco, Buffalo Springfield)
- Laurence Owen, American figure skater (d. 1961)
- May 10 – Jim Abrahams, American film director
- May 12 – Sara Kestelman, English actress
- May 13 – Armistead Maupin, American author
- May 14 – George Lucas, American film director and producer
- May 15 – Gunilla Hutton, Swedish-born American actress and singer
- May 20
- Joe Cocker, English rock singer
- Boudewijn de Groot, Dutch singer
- Dietrich Mateschitz, Austrian businessman
- May 21 – Mary Robinson, President of Ireland
- May 23
- John Newcombe, Australian tennis player
- Avraham Oz, Israeli theatre professor, translator, and political activist
- May 24 – Patti LaBelle, American singer
- May 25 – Frank Oz, English puppeteer and film director
- May 27 – Chris Dodd, American politician
- May 28
- Rudy Giuliani, former Mayor of New York City
- Gladys Knight, American singer
- Rita MacNeil, Canadian folk singer
- Patricia, Lady Stephens (née Quinn), retired Northern Irish actress
- May 29 – Helmut Berger, Austrian actor
- May 30 – Meredith MacRae, American actress (d. 2000)
- June 1 – Robert Powell, English actor
- June 3 – Edith McGuire, American sprinter
- June 4 – Michelle Phillips, American singer and actress ( The Mamas & the Papas)
- June 5
- Tommie Smith, American athlete
- Colm Wilkinson, Irish actor and singer
- June 6 – Phillip Allen Sharp, American scientist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine
- June 8
- June 13 – Ban Ki-moon, South Korean politician and Secretary-General of the United Nations
- June 16 – Henri Richelet, French painter
- June 17 – Bill Rafferty, American comedian and impressionist (d. 2012)
- June 24
- Jeff Beck, English rock musician
- David Mark Berger, American-born Israeli weightlifter, murdered at the Munich Olympics (d. 1972)
- June 29 – Gary Busey, American actor
- June 30
- Terry Funk, American professional wrestler
- Raymond Moody, American parapsychologist
- July 3 – Michel Polnareff, French singer
- July 8 – Jeffrey Tambor, American actor
- July 13 – Ernő Rubik, Hungarian inventor
- July 14 – Aad Mansveld, Dutch footballer
- July 15 – Jan-Michael Vincent, American actor
- July 16 – Angharad Rees, Welsh actress (d. 2012)
- July 17 – Mark Burgess, New Zealand cricket captain
- July 21 – Paul Wellstone, U.S. Senator from Minnesota (d. 2002)
- July 23 – Alex Buzo, of Sydney, Australian playwright and author (d. 2006)
- July 31
- Geraldine Chaplin, English-American actress
- Robert C. Merton, American economist, Nobel Prize laureate
- August 1 – Yuri Romanenko, Soviet cosmonaut
- August 2 – Jim Capaldi, British drummer, singer, and songwriter ( Traffic; d. 2005)
- August 3 – Jonas Falk, Swedish actor (d. 2010)
- August 4
- Richard Belzer, American actor and comedian
- William Frankfather, American actor (d. 1998)
- Orhan Gencebay, Turkish musician, composer, singer and actor
- August 7 – John Glover, American actor
- August 8 – Brooke Bundy, American actress
- August 9 – Sam Elliott, American actor
- August 9 – Khaleda Zia, Bangladeshi politician and former Prime Minister.
- August 11 – Ian McDiarmid, Scottish actor
- August 12 – Larry Troutman, American musician (d. 1999)
- August 13 – Kevin Tighe, American actor
- August 15 – Sylvie Vartan, French singer
- August 18 – Robert Hitchcock, Australian Sculptor
- August 19 – Bodil Malmsten, Swedish writer
- August 20 – Linda Clifford, American R&B and dance singer
- August 21
- Kari S. Tikka, Finnish Professor of Finance (d. 2006)
- Peter Weir, Australian film director
- August 23 – Saira Banu, Indian actress
- August 25 – Christine Chubbuck, American television reporter (d. 1974)
- August 26 – Prince Richard, Duke of Gloucester
- August 31 – Jos LeDuc, Canadian professional wrestler (d. 1999)
- September 1 – Leonard Slatkin, American conductor
- September 2 – Gilles Marchal, French musician
- September 3 – Tim Donnelly, American actor (Emergency!)
- September 6 – Christian Boltanski, French artist
- September 7
- Earl Manigault, American basketball player (d. 1998)
- Bora Milutinovic, Serbian football coach
- September 12
- Leonard Peltier, Native American activist and convicted murderer
- Barry White, American singer (d. 2003)
- September 13
- Carol Barnes, British newsreader (d. 2008)
- Jacqueline Bisset, English actress
- Peter Cetera, American singer
- September 16 – Betty Kelley, American singer ( Martha and the Vandellas)
- September 17 – Reinhold Messner, Italian mountaineer
- September 18 – Satan's Angel, American exotic dancer
- September 19 – Ismet Özel, Turkish poet
- September 21 – Hamilton Jordan, Jimmy Carter's first White House Chief of Staff (d. 2008)
- September 22 – Frazer Hines, British actor
- September 25 – Michael Douglas, American actor, producer
- September 26
- Veronica Carlson, English actress and model
- Anne Robinson, British television host
- September 30 – Jimmy Johnstone, Scottish footballer (d. 2006)
- October 4 – Tony La Russa, American baseball player and manager
- October 6 – Mylon LeFevre, American singer and evangelist
- October 9
- October 15
- Şerif Gören, Turkish film director
- David Trimble, Northern Irish Unionist political leader; recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize
- October 20 – Clive Hornby, English actor (d. 2008)
- October 24 – Ray Downs, American author and country music musician
- October 28 – Dennis Franz, American actor
- November 1
- Bobby Heenan, American professional wrestling manager and commentator
- Oscar Temaru, President of French Polynesia
- November 6 – Wild Man Fischer, Outsider musician
- November 7 – Joe Niekro, American baseball player (d. 2006)
- November 10
- Askar Akayevich Akayev, former President of Kyrgyzstan
- Silvestre Reyes, American politician
- November 11 – Kemal Sunal, Turkish comedian
- November 12
- Booker T. Jones, American musician, singer and songwriter ( Booker T. & the M.G.'s)
- Al Michaels, American sportscaster
- November 17
- Danny DeVito, American actor, film producer & director
- Rem Koolhaas, Dutch architect
- Lorne Michaels, Canadian television and film producer
- Tom Seaver, American baseball player
- November 18 – Wolfgang Joop, German artist, fashion designer, and art collector
- November 21 – Richard Durbin, American politician
- November 24 – Ibrahim Gambari, Nigerian scholar and diplomat
- November 25 – Ben Stein, American law professor, actor and author
- November 30 – George Graham, Scottish football player and manager
- December 2
- Cathy Lee Crosby, American actress (That's Incredible!)
- Ibrahim Rugova, first President of Kosovo (d. 2006)
- December 5 – Jeroen Krabbe, Dutch actor and film director
- December 6
- Ron Kenoly, American Christian worship leader
- Jonathan King, British music producer
- December 7
- Daniel Chorzempa, American organist
- Georges Coste, French Rugby player and coach
- December 9
- Tadashi Irie, Japanese yakuza boss
- Ki Longfellow, American novelist
- December 11
- Teri Garr, American actress and comedienne
- Lynda Day George, American actress
- Brenda Lee, American singer
- December 12 – Kenneth Cranham, Scottish born actor
- December 17 – Bernard Hill, English actor
- December 19 – Tim Reid, American actor and comedian
- December 21
- Bill Atkinson, English footballer
- Michael Tilson Thomas, American conductor
- Zheng Xiaoyu, Chinese bureaucrat (d. 2007)
- December 22 – Steve Carlton, American baseball player
- December 23
- Wesley Clark, U.S. general and NATO Supreme Allied Commander
- Ingar Knudtsen, Norwegian writer
- December 24 – Erhard Keller, German speed skater
- December 25 – Jairzinho, Brazilian football player
- December 26
- Bill Ayers, American education theorist and former radical anti-war activist
- Eli Cohen, Israeli spy
- Jane Lapotaire, British actress
- Aleksey Mikhalyov, Russian translator
- December 28 – Kary Mullis, American chemist, Nobel Prize laureate
- December 30 – Joseph Hilbe, American statistician and author
- December 31 – Jan Widströmer, Swedish artist
- Ramon Torrents, Spanish artist
- January 1
- January 5 – Kaj Munk, Danish playwright, priest and martyr (b. 1898) (executed)
- January 6 – Ida Tarbell, American journalist and " muckraker" (b. 1857)
- January 7 – Lou Henry Hoover, Wife of President Herbert Hoover (b. 1874)
- January 10 – William Emerson Ritter, American biologist (b. 1856)
- January 11
- January 20 – James McKeen Cattell, American psychologist (b. 1860)
- January 23 – Edvard Munch, Norwegian painter (b. 1863)
- January 31
- February 1 – Piet Mondriaan, Dutch painter (b. 1872)
- February 4 – Yvette Guilbert, French singer and actress (b. 1867)
- February 11 – Carl Meinhof, German linguist (b. 1857)
- February 12
- February 13 – Edgar Selwyn, American screenwriter (b. 1875)
- February 16 – Henri Nathansen, Danish writer and stage director (b. 1868)
- February 21 – Ferenc Szisz, Hungarian-born race car driver (b. 1873)
- February 29 – Pehr Evind Svinhufvud, Finnish politician (b. 1861)
- March 4 – Louis Buchalter, Jewish-American mobster, head of Murder, Inc. (b. 1897)
- March 5 – Max Jacob, French poet (b. 1876)
- March 11 – Irvin S. Cobb, American writer (b. 1876)
- March 22 – Pierre Brossolette, journalist and French Resistance fighter (b. 1903)
- March 23 – Myron Selznick, American film producer (b. 1898)
- March 24 – Orde Wingate, British soldier (b. 1903)
- March 31 – Mineichi Koga, Japanese admiral (b. 1885)
- April 9 – Evgeniya Rudneva, Soviet WWII heroine (b. 1920)
- April 17 – J.T. Hearne, English cricketer (b. 1867)
- April 21 – Hans-Valentin Hube, German army general (b. 1890)
- April 25 – George Herriman, American cartoonist (b. 1880)
- April 28
- April 29
- May 7 – William Ledyard Rodgers, American admiral and military and naval historian (b. 1860)
- May 12
- May 16 – George Ade, American author (b. 1866)
- May 20
- May 24
- May 25 – Clark Daniel Stearns, 9th Governor of American Samoa (b. 1870)
- May 30 – Jessie Ralph, American actress (b. 1864)
- June – Joseph Campbell, Northern Irish poet and lyricist (b. 1879)
- June 27 – Milan Hodža, Slovak politician, champion of regional integration in Europe (b. 1878)
- July 1 – Carl Mayer, Austrian screenwriter (b. 1894)
- July 6
- Andrée Borrel, French World War II heroine (executed) (b. 1919)
- Vera Leigh, English World War II heroine (executed) (b. 1903)
- Chūichi Nagumo, Japanese admiral (b. 1887)
- Sonia Olschanezky, German World War II heroine (executed) (b. 1923)
- Diana Rowden, English World War II heroine (executed) (b. 1915)
- July 7 – Georges Mandel, French politician and WWII hero (executed) (b. 1885)
- July 8
- July 12 – Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., American political and business leader (b. 1887)
- July 14 – Asmahan a Syrian-born Egyptian singer (b.1918?).
- July 18 – Rex Whistler, English artist (b. 1905)
- July 20 – Mildred Harris, American actress (b. 1901)
- July 21 – Claus von Stauffenberg, German military and resistance fighter (b. 1907)
- July 25
- July 26 – Reza Pahlavi, Shah of Iran (b. 1877)
- July 30 – Lee Powell, American actor (b. 1908)
- July 31 – Antoine de Saint-Exupery, French pilot and writer (b. 1900)
- August 1 – Manuel L. Quezon, Philippine president (b. 1878)
- August 2 – Kakuji Kakuta, Japanese admiral (b. 1890)
- August 4 – Krzysztof Kamil Baczyński, Polish poet (Warsaw Uprising) (b. 1921)
- August 12
- Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr., American fighter pilot, oldest son of Joseph P. Kennedy (b. 1915)
- Suzanne Spaak, Belgian World War II heroine (executed)
- August 17 – Günther von Kluge, German field marshal (b. 1882)
- August 19 – Henry Wood, British conductor (b. 1869)
- August 23 – Abdul Mejid II, Caliph of the Ottoman Empire (b. 1868)
- August 26
- August 27 – Princess Mafalda of Savoy (executed) (b. 1902)
- September 6
- September 9 – Robert Benoist, French race car driver and war hero (executed) (b. 1895)
- September 11
- September 13 – Heath Robinson, British cartoonist and illustrator (b. 1872)
- September 14
- September 16 – Gustav Bauer, Chancellor of Germany (b. 1870)
- September 25 – Eugeniusz Lokajski, Polish athlete, gymnast and photographer (Warsaw Uprising) (b. 1909)
- September 27 – Aristide Maillol, French sculptor and painter (b. 1861)
- October 4 – Al Smith, American politician (b. 1873)
- October 8 – Wendell Willkie, American politician (b. 1892)
- October 14 – Erwin Rommel, German field marshal (b. 1891)
- October 21 – Alois Kayser, German missionary (b. 1877)
- October 22 – Richard Bennett, American actor (b. 1870)
- October 23 – Charles Glover Barkla, English physicist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1877)
- October 24 – Shōji Nishimura, Japanese vice admiral (b. 1889)
- October 26
- November 2 – Thomas Midgley, Jr., American chemist and inventor (b. 1889)
- November 5 – Alexis Carrel, French surgeon and biologist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (b. 1873)
- November 7 – Hannah Szenes, Hungarian World War II heroine (executed) (b. 1921)
- November 10 – Wang Jingwei, Nanjing Nationalist regime in northern China (died of pneumonia) (b. 1883)
- November 12 – George F. Houston, American actor (b. 1896)
- December 2 – Josef Lhévinne, Russian pianist (b. 1874)
- December 4 – Roger Bresnahan, American baseball player (b. 1879)
- December 9 – Laird Cregar, American actor (b. 1916)
- December 13
- December 15 – Glenn Miller, American band leader (b. 1904)
- December 22 – Harry Langdon, American comedian (b. 1884)
- December 30 – Romain Rolland, French writer, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1866)
- December 31 – Vicente Lim, Filipino general of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (b. 1889)
- Gerald Haxton, companion and secretary to novelist/playwright W. Somerset Maugham (b. 1892)