Nuremberg race laws imposed - HISTORY
Year
1935

Nuremberg race laws imposed

On this day in 1935, German Jews are stripped of their citizenship, reducing them to mere “subjects” of the state.

After Hitler’s accession to the offices of president and chancellor of Germany, he set about the task of remaking his adopted country (Hitler had to pull some strings even to be eligible for office, as he was Austrian by birth) into the dream state he imagined. But his dream was soon to become a nightmare for many. Early on in his reign, the lives of non-Jewish German citizens were barely disrupted. But not so for Hitler’s “enemies.” Hitler’s racist ideology, which elevated those of “pure-blooded” German stock to the level of “masters” of the earth, began working itself out in vicious ways.

Within the first year of Hitler’s rule, German Jews were excluded from a host of high-profile vocations, from public office to journalism, radio, theater, film, and teaching-even farming. The professions of law and medicine were also withdrawn slowly as opportunities. “Jews Not Welcome” signs could be seen on shop and hotel windows, beer gardens, and other public arenas. With the Nuremberg Laws, these discriminatory acts became embedded in the culture by fiat, making them even more far-reaching. Jews were forbidden to marry “Aryans” or engage in extramarital relations with them. Jews could not employ female Aryan servants if they were less than 35 years of age. Jews found it difficult even to buy food, as groceries, bakeries, and dairies would not admit Jewish customers. Even pharmacies refused to sell them medicines or drugs.

What was the outside world’s reaction? Because unemployment had dropped precipitously under Hitler’s early commandeering of the economy, and the average German felt renewed hope and pride, the face of Germany seemed brighter, more at peace with itself. While some foreign visitors, even some political opponents within Germany itself, decried these racist laws and practices, most were beguiled into thinking it was merely a phase, and that Hitler, in the words of former British Prime Minister Lloyd George, was “a great man.”

ALSO ON THIS DAY

Lehman Brothers bankruptcy

On this day in 2008, the venerable Wall Street brokerage firm Lehman Brothers seeks Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, becoming the largest victim of the subprime mortgage crisis that would devastate financial markets and contribute to the biggest economic downturn since the Great ...read more

Tide turns in the Battle of Britain

The Battle of Britain reaches its climax when the Royal Air Force (RAF) downs 56 invading German aircraft in two dogfights lasting less than an hour. The costly raid convinced the German high command that the Luftwaffe could not achieve air supremacy over Britain, and the next ...read more

U.S. forces land at Inchon

During the Korean War, U.S. Marines land at Inchon on the west coast of Korea, 100 miles south of the 38th parallel and just 25 miles from Seoul. The location had been criticized as too risky, but U.N. Supreme Commander Douglas MacArthur insisted on carrying out the landing. By ...read more

First trenches are dug on the Western Front

In the wake of the Battle of the Marne—during which Allied troops halted the steady German push through Belgium and France that had proceeded over the first month of World War I—a conflict both sides had expected to be short and decisive turns longer and bloodier, as Allied and ...read more

NLF calls for general military offensive

The National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam, or as it was more popularly known, the National Liberation Front (NLF), calls for a general military offensive to take advantage of the ‘disarray’ among the South Vietnamese, particularly after the abortive coup attempt ...read more

Athletics clinch pennant

On September 15, 1931, the Philadelphia Athletics beat the Cleveland Indians to clinch their third consecutive American League pennant. The win was the ninth and final American League championship of legendary manager Connie Mack’s storied career.Connie Mack was born Cornelius ...read more

James Madison marries Dolley Payne Todd

On this day in 1794, future President James Madison marries Dolley Payne Todd, a vivacious widow who went on to embrace the role of first lady and White House hostess.While Madison was serving as vice president from 1801 to 1809, Dolley assumed the role of White House hostess for ...read more

Future President William Taft born

On this day in 1857, William Howard Taft is born in Cincinnati, OhioTaft was born into a politically active family; his father had served as President Ulysses S. Grant’s secretary of war. He attended college at Yale University, graduating second in his class. He then attended ...read more

Agatha Christie is born

Mary Clarissa Agatha Miller, later known as Agatha Christie, is born on this day in Torquay, Devon, England.Raised and educated at Ashfield, her parents’ comfortable home, Christie began making up stories as a child. Her mother and her older sister Madge also made up stories: ...read more

Train plunges off bridge

A commuter train plunges off a bridge into Newark Bay in New Jersey killing 47 passengers on this day in 1958. The accident was the result of mistakes made by the train’s crew.The first bridge across Newark Bay was built in 1864. In 1926, this bridge was updated. Now made of ...read more

A Bible school instructor abducts a teenage girl

Thirteen-year-old Melissa Benoit disappears in her hometown of Kingston, Massachusetts, on her way home from a friend’s house. Although the town detective talked to everyone who lived on the path between the two houses, no one admitted to having seen Benoit. Soon afterward, the ...read more