|Centuries:||19th century – 20th century – 21st century|
|Decades:||1910s 1920s 1930s – 1940s – 1950s 1960s 1970s|
|Years:||1942 1943 1944 – 1945 – 1946 1947 1948|
|1945 by topic:|
|Birth and death categories|
|Establishments and disestablishments categories|
|Works and introductions categories|
|Ab urbe condita||2698|
|British Regnal year||9 Geo. 6 – 10 Geo. 6|
|Chinese calendar||甲申年 (Wood Monkey)
4641 or 4581
— to —
乙酉年 (Wood Rooster)
4642 or 4582
|- Vikram Samvat||2001–2002|
|- Shaka Samvat||1867–1868|
|- Kali Yuga||5046–5047|
|Japanese calendar||Shōwa 20
|Julian calendar||Gregorian minus 13 days|
|Minguo calendar||ROC 34
|Thai solar calendar||2488|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to 1945.|
1945 (MCMXLV) was a common year starting on Monday (link displays the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar, the 1945th year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 945th year of the 2nd millennium, the 45th year of the 20th century, and the 6th year of the 1940s decade.
Below, events of World War II have the "WWII" prefix.
- January – WWII: Allied advance from Paris to the Rhine continues; the United States Army crosses the Siegfried Line.
- January 1 – WWII: Germany begins Operation Bodenplatte, an attempt by the Luftwaffe to cripple Allied air forces in the Low Countries
- January 5 – Australia recognize the Polish Committee of National Liberation as the government of Poland.
- January 7 – WWII: British General Bernard Montgomery holds a press conference at Zonhoven describing his supporting role at the Battle of the Bulge.
- January 12 – WWII: The Soviet Union begins the Vistula–Oder Offensive in Eastern Europe against the German Army.
- January 13 – WWII: The Soviet Union begins the East Prussian Offensive to eliminate German forces in East Prussia.
- January 16 – WWII: Adolf Hitler takes residence in the Führerbunker in Berlin.
- January 17
- January 18 – The Holocaust: The SS begins evacuation of Auschwitz concentration camp. Nearly 60,000 prisoners, mostly Jews, are forced to march to other locations in Germany; as many as 15,000 die. The 7,000 too sick to move are left without supplies being distributed.
- January 20 – Franklin D. Roosevelt is inaugurated to a fourth term as President of the United States, the only President ever to exceed two terms.
- January 23 – WWII
- January 24 – WWII: AP war correspondent Joseph Morton, nine OSS men, and four SOE agents are executed by the Germans at Mauthausen concentration camp under Hitler's Commando Order of 1942 which stipulates the immediate execution of all captured Allied commandos or saboteurs without trial, even those in proper uniforms. Morton is the only Allied correspondent to be executed by the Axis during the war.
- January 26 – WWII: Infantry action at Holtzwihr, France, for which Audie Murphy is awarded the Medal of Honor.
- January 27 – The Holocaust: The Soviet Red Army liberates the Auschwitz and Birkenau concentration camps.
- January 28 – WWII: Supplies begin to reach China over the newly reopened Burma Road.
- January 30 - WWII
- MV Wilhelm Gustloff, with over 10,000 mainly civilian Germans from Gotenhafen (Gdynia) is sunk in Gdańsk Bay by three torpedoes from the Soviet submarine S-13 in the Baltic Sea; up to 9,400 are thought to have died – the greatest loss of life in a single ship sinking in war action in history.
- Raid at Cabanatuan: 121 American soldiers and 800 Filipino guerrillas free 813 American prisoners of war from the Japanese-held camp in the city of Cabanatuan in the Philippines.
- Adolf Hitler makes his last public speech to be delivered personally, on broadcast radio, expressing the belief that Germany will triumph.
- January 31 – WWII: Eddie Slovik is executed by firing squad near Sainte-Marie-aux-Mines for desertion, the only U.S. soldier since the American Civil War ever executed for this offense.
- February – Raymond L. Libby of American Cyanamid's research laboratories at Stamford, Connecticut, announces a method of orally administering the antibiotic penicillin.
- February 3 – WWII:
- February 4–11 – WWII: President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Winston Churchill and Soviet leader Joseph Stalin hold the Yalta Conference.
- February 6 – French writer Robert Brasillach is executed for collaboration with the Germans.
- February 7 – WWII: General Douglas MacArthur returns to Manila.
- February 9
- February 10 – WWII: 3,608 drown when the troopship SS General von Steuben is sunk by the Soviet submarine S-13.
- February 10–20 – WWII: Operation Kita: The Imperial Japanese Navy returns "Completion Force", containing both its Ise-class battleships, safely from Singapore to Kure in Japan despite Allied attacks.
- February 13 – WWII:
- February 14 – Chile, Ecuador, Paraguay and Peru join the United Nations.
- February 16 – WWII:
- February 19–February 20 – 980 Japanese soldiers die as a result of a killing spree by long saltwater crocodiles in Ramree, Burma.
- February 19 – WWII – Battle of Iwo Jima: About 30,000 United States Marines land on Iwo Jima.
- February 21 – The last V-2-rocket is launched from Peenemünde.
- February 22 – WWII:
- Italian Front: end of the Battle of Monte Castello, after nearly three months of fighting, Brazilian troops expel German forces of a pivot point in the (Tuscan) North Apennines, where their artillery was impeding the advance of British 8th Army toward Bologna;
- Uruguay declares war on Germany and Japan.
- February 23 – WWII:
- Battle of Iwo Jima: A group of United States Marines reach the top of Mount Suribachi on the island and are photographed raising the American flag. The photo, Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima (taken by Joe Rosenthal), later wins a Pulitzer Prize.
- The 11th Airborne Division, with Filipino guerrillas, freed the captives of the Los Baños internment camp.
- The capital of the Philippines, Manila, is liberated by combined American and Filipino ground troops.
- American and Filipino troops enter Intramuros, Manila.
- The German garrison in Poznań capitulates to Red Army and Polish troops.
- Bombing of Pforzheim: Heaviest of a series of bombing raids on Pforzheim in Germany by Allied aircraft is carried out by the British Royal Air Force. As many as 17,600 people, or 31.4% of the town's population, are killed in the raid and about 83% of the town's buildings destroyed, two-thirds of its complete area and between 80 and 100% of the inner city.
- Turkey joins the war on the allies side.
- February 24 – The Egyptian Premier Ahmad Mahir Pasha is killed in Parliament after reading a decree.
- February 28 – In Bucharest, a violent demonstration takes place, during which the bolşevic group opens fire on the army and protesters. In response, Andrei Y. Vishinsky, USSR vice commissioner of foreign affairs and president of the Allied Control Commission for Romania, travels to Bucharest to compel Nicolae Rădescu to resign as premier.
- March – Anne Frank dies of typhus in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, Lower Saxony, Germany.
- March 1 – Franklin D. Roosevelt gives what will be his last address to a joint session of the United States Congress, reporting on the Yalta Conference.
- March 2
- March 3 – WWII:
- Finland declares war on the Axis powers.
- United States and Filipino troops take Manila, Philippines.
- Bombing of the Bezuidenhout: The British Royal Air Force accidentally bombs the Bezuidenhout neighbourhood in The Hague, Netherlands, killing 511 people.
- A possible experimental atomic test blast occurs at the Nazis' Ohrdruf military testing area.[dubious ]
- March 4 – In the United Kingdom, The Princess Elizabeth, later to become Queen Elizabeth II, joins the British Army's Women's Auxiliary Territorial Service as a truck driver/mechanic.
- March 4 – Football club FC Red Star (in Serbian: FK Crvena Zvezda) formed in Belgrade, Yugoslavia.
- March 5 – WWII: Brazilian troops take Castelnuovo (Vergato), in the last prior operations for the Allied Spring 1945 offensive in Italy.
- March 6
- March 7 – WWII: American troops seize the bridge over the Rhine at Remagen, Germany and begin to cross.
- March 8
- Josip Broz Tito forms a government in Yugoslavia.
- The Nazi authorities kill 117 Dutch men in reprisal for the attempted murder of Hanns Albin Rauter.
- Operation Sunrise: Waffen-SS General Karl Wolff meets with Allen Welsh Dulles of the United States Office of Strategic Services at Lucerne in neutral Switzerland to negotiate surrender of the Axis forces in Italy to the Allies.
- March 9–10 – WWII: Bombing of Tokyo – USAAF B-29 bombers attack Tokyo, Japan, with incendiary bombs, killing 100,000 citizens in the firebombing.
- March 9 – The film Les Enfants du Paradis premieres in Paris.
- March 11
- March 12 – WWII: Swinemünde is destroyed by the USAAF killing an estimated 8,000 to 23,000 civilians, mostly refugees saved by Operation Hannibal.
- March 15 – The 17th Academy Awards ceremony is held, broadcast via radio for the first time. Best Picture goes to Going My Way.
- March 16 – WWII: The Battle of Iwo Jima unofficially ends, with pockets of guerrilla resistance persisting until the official conclusion of the battle.
- March 17 – WWII: Kobe, Japan is is fire-bombed by 331 B-29 bombers, killing over 8,000 people.
- March 18 – WWII: 1,250 American bombers attack Berlin.
- March 19 – WWII:
- March 21 – WWII
- March 22
- March 24
- March 26 – WWII: The Battle of Iwo Jima officially ends, with the destruction of the remaining areas of Japanese resistance.
- March 29
- March 30 – WWII:
- April 1 – WWII – Battle of Okinawa: The Tenth United States Army lands on Okinawa.
- April 4 – WWII:
- April 6 – WWII: Sarajevo is liberated from Nazi Germany and the Independent State of Croatia (a fascist puppet state) by Yugoslav Partisans.
- April 7 – WWII:
- The only flight of the German ramming unit known as the Sonderkommando Elbe takes place, resulting in the loss of some 24 B-17s and B-24s of the United States Eighth Air Force.
- The Japanese battleship Yamato is sunk 200 miles (320 km) north of Okinawa while en route on a suicide mission.
- Kantarō Suzuki becomes Prime Minister of Japan.
- April 8 – The SS begins to evacuate the Buchenwald concentration camp; inmates in the Buchenwald Resistance call for American aid and overpower and kill the remaining guards.
- April 9
- April 10 – WWII: Visoko is liberated by the 7th, 9th and 17th Krajina Brigades from the Tenth Division of Yugoslav Partisan forces.
- April 11 – Buchenwald concentration camp is liberated by the United States Army.
- April 12 – President of the United States Franklin D. Roosevelt dies suddenly at Warm Springs, Georgia; Vice President Harry S. Truman becomes the 33rd President.
- April 14 – WWII: The Canadian First Army assumes military control of the Netherlands where German forces are trapped in the Atlantic wall fortifications along the coastline.
- April 15 – WWII:
- April 16 – WWII:
- April 17 – WWII:
- April 18 – American war correspondent Ernie Pyle is killed by Japanese machine gun fire on the island of Ie Shima off Okinawa.
- April 19 – Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel, a musical play based on Ferenc Molnár's Liliom, opens on Broadway and becomes their second long-running stage classic.
- April 20 - WWII: On his 56th birthday Adolf Hitler leaves his Führerbunker to decorate a group of Hitler Youth soldiers in Berlin. It will be his last trip to the surface from his underground bunker.
- April 22 – WWII:
- Heinrich Himmler, through Count Bernadotte, puts forth an offer of German surrender to the Western Allies, but not the Soviet Union.
- Adolf Hitler concedes defeat in his underground Berlin bunker after learning Felix Steiner could not mobilize enough men to launch a counterattack on the Soviets who had just broken through Germany.
- April 24 – Retreating German troops destroy all the bridges over the Adige in Verona, including the historic Ponte di Castelvecchio and Ponte Pietra.
- April 25
- April 25–26 – WWII: Last major strategic bombing raid by RAF Bomber Command, the destruction of the oil refinery at Tønsberg in southern Norway by 107 Avro Lancasters.
- April 26 – WWII:
- Battle of Bautzen: The last "successful" German panzer-offensive in Bautzen ends with the city recaptured.
- The British 3rd Infantry Division under General Whistler captures Bremen.
- Nazi surrenders mean the British and Canadians now control the German border with Switzerland from Basle to Lake Constance.
- April 27
- April 28
- April 29
- At the royal palace in Caserta, Lieutenant-Colonel Viktor von Schweinitz (representing General Heinrich von Vietinghoff) and SS-Obersturmbannfuehrer Eugen Wenner (representing Waffen-SS General Karl Wolf) sign an unconditional instrument of surrender for all Axis powers forces in Italy, taking effect on May 2. Italian General Rodolfo Graziani orders the Esercito Nazionale Repubblicano forces under his command to lay down their arms.
- Brazilian forces liberate the commune of Fornovo di Taro, Italy, from German forces.
- Operation Manna: British Avro Lancaster bombers drop food into the Netherlands to prevent the starvation of the civilian population.
- Adolf Hitler marries his longtime mistress Eva Braun in a closed civil ceremony in the Berlin Führerbunker.
- April 30 – Death of Adolf Hitler: Adolf Hitler and his wife of one day, Eva Braun, commit suicide as the Red Army approaches the Führerbunker in Berlin. Karl Dönitz succeeds Hitler as President of Germany; Joseph Goebbels succeeds Hitler as Chancellor of Germany.
- May – Interpol (being headquartered in Berlin) effectively ceases to exist (it is recreated on June 3, 1946).
- May 1 – WWII:
- Hamburg Radio announces that Hitler has died in battle, "fighting up to his last breath against Bolshevism."
- Joseph Goebbels and his wife Magda commit suicide after killing their six children. Karl Dönitz appoints Count Lutz Graf Schwerin von Krosigk as the new Chancellor of Germany.
- Troops of the Yugoslav 4th Army, together with the Slovene 9th Corpus NOV, enter Trieste.
- Mass suicide in Demmin.
- May 2 – WWII:
- The Soviet Union announces the fall of Berlin. Soviet soldiers hoist the Red flag over the Reich Chancellery.
- Lübeck is liberated by the British Army.
- Surrender of Axis troops in Italy comes into effect.
- Troops of the New Zealand Army 2nd Division enter Trieste a day after the Yugoslavs; the German Army in Trieste surrenders to the New Zealand Army.
- Neuengamme concentration camp near Hamburg is evacuated at about this date.
- Expatriate American poet Ezra Pound is arrested by the Italian resistance movement; released by them, on May 5 he turns himself in to the United States Army and is imprisoned as a traitor.
- May 3 – WWII:
- The prison ships Cap Arcona, Thielbek and Deutschland are sunk by the British Royal Air Force in Lübeck Bay.
- Rocket scientist Wernher von Braun and 120 members of his team surrender to U.S. forces (later going on to help to start the U.S. space program).
- German Protestant theologian Gerhard Kittel is arrested by the French forces in Tübingen, Germany.
- May 4 – WWII:
- German surrender at Lüneburg Heath: The North German army surrenders unconditionally to Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery.
- Holland is liberated by British and Canadian troops. German forces officially surrender one day later.
- Denmark is liberated. German forces officially surrender one day later.
- The Holy Crown of Hungary is found by the United States Army 86th Infantry Division. The United States government keeps the crown in Fort Knox for safekeeping from the Soviets until it is returned to Hungary on 6 January 1978.
- May 5 – WWII:
- Prague uprising: Prague rises up against occupying Nazi forces.
- The US 11th Armored Division liberates the prisoners of Mauthausen concentration camp, including Simon Wiesenthal.
- Canadian soldiers liberate the city of Amsterdam from Nazi occupation.
- Admiral Karl Dönitz orders all U-boats to cease offensive operations and return to their bases.
- A Japanese fire balloon kills five children and a woman, Elsie Mitchell, near Bly, Oregon, when it explodes as they drag it from the woods. They are the only people killed by an enemy attack on the American mainland during WWII.
- May 6
- May 6–7 – The government of the Independent State of Croatia, the fascist puppet state established in the Croatian and Bosnian parts of occupied Yugoslavia, flees Zagreb for a location near Klagenfurt in Austria rather than fall into the hands of the Yugoslav Partisans, initiating the events of the Bleiburg repatriations.
- May 7 – WWII: General Alfred Jodl signs the unconditional German Instrument of Surrender at Reims, France, ending Germany's participation in the war. The document takes effect the next day.
- May 8 – WWII:
- Victory in Europe Day (V-E Day) as Nazi Germany surrenders, marking the end of WWII in Europe, with the final surrender being to the Soviets in Berlin, attended by representatives of the Western Powers.
- Canadian troops move into Amsterdam, after German troops surrender.
- Surrender of the Dodecanese is signed in Symi.
- The British 8th Army, together with Slovene partisan troops and a motorized detachment of the Yugoslav 4th Army, arrives in Carinthia and Klagenfurt. The Croatian Armed Forces of the Independent State of Croatia are ordered by their commanders not to surrender to the Yugoslav Partisans but to attempt to retreat to Austria and surrender to the British, part of the events leading to the Bleiburg repatriations.
- May 8–29 – Sétif and Guelma massacre: In Algeria, thousands die as French troops and released Italian POWs kill an estimated 6,000 to 40,000 Algerian citizens.
- May 9 – WWII:
- The Soviet Union marks V-E Day.
- Hermann Göring is captured by the United States Army.
- The Norwegian resistance movement in Oslo, Norway, arrests the traitor Vidkun Quisling.
- The Red Army enters Prague.
- General Alexander Löhr, Commander of German Army Group E near Topolšica, Slovenia, signs the capitulation of German occupation troops.
- The German occupation of the Channel Islands ends with their liberation by British troops. Alderney, an annex of the Neuengamme concentration camp, is among the islands liberated.
- May 12
- May 14–15 – WWII – Battle of Poljana: The last battle of the War in Europe is fought at Poljana near Slovenj Gradec, Slovenia.
- May 15 – WWII – Bleiburg tragedy (Croatian: "Way of the Cross"): Retreating troops of the Croatian Armed Forces of the former puppet Independent State of Croatia (intermingled with fleeing civilians) attempt to surrender to the British Army at Bleiburg but are directed to surrender to Yugoslav Partisans who open fire on them. The remainder, after orders are given by Josip Broz Tito, are force-marched through Croatia and Serbia, interned or massacred, with thousands dying.
- May 23 – President of Germany Karl Dönitz and Chancellor of Germany Count Lutz Graf Schwerin von Krosigk are arrested by British forces at Flensburg. They are respectively the last German Head of state and Head of government until 1949.
- May 23 – Heinrich Himmler, former head of the Nazi SS, commits suicide in British custody.
- May 28 – William Joyce ("Lord Haw-Haw") is captured. He is later charged with high treason in London for his English-language wartime broadcasts on German radio, convicted, and then hanged in January 1946.
- May 29
- May 30 – The Iranian government demands that all Soviet and British troops leave the country.
- June 1 – The British take over Lebanon and Syria.
- June 5 – The Allied Control Council, military occupation governing body of Germany, formally takes power.
- June 6 – King Haakon VII of Norway returns to Norway.
- June 11
- June 12 – The Yugoslav Army leaves Trieste, leaving the New Zealand Army in control.
- June 21 – WWII: The Battle of Okinawa ends with US occupation of the island until 1972.
- June 24 – WWII: A victory parade is held in Red Square in Moscow.
- June 25 – Seán T. O'Kelly is elected the second President of Ireland.
- June 26 – The United Nations Charter is signed.
- June 29 – Czechoslovakia cedes Carpathian Ruthenia to the Soviet Union.
- June 30 – Distribution of John von Neumann's First Draft of a Report on the EDVAC, containing the first published description of the logical design of a computer with stored-program and instruction data stored in the same address space within the memory (von Neumann architecture).
- July 1 – WWII: Germany is divided between the Allied occupation forces.
- July 5 – Australian Prime Minister John Curtin dies of a heart attack at age 60.
- July 4 – The Brazilian cruiser Bahia is sunk by an accidentally induced explosion, killing more than 300 and stranding the survivors in shark-infested waters.
- July 5 – WWII: The Philippines are declared liberated.
- July 8 – WWII: Harry S. Truman is informed that Japan will talk peace if it can retain the reign of the Emperor.
- July 9 – A forest fire breaks out in the Tillamook Burn (the third in that area of Oregon since 1933).
- July 15 – The Scott Morrison Award of Minor Hockey Excellence was first given; first recipient is Gordie Howe.
- July 14 – Italy declares war on Japan.
- July 16 – The Trinity Test, the first of an atomic bomb, using about six kilograms of plutonium, succeeds in unleashing an explosion equivalent to that of 19 kilotons of TNT.
- July 16 – WWII: A train collision near Munich, Germany kills 102 war prisoners.
- July 17–August 2 – WWII – Potsdam Conference: At Potsdam, the three main Allied leaders hold their final summit of the war.
- July 21 – WWII: President Harry S. Truman approves the order for atomic bombs to be used against Japan.
- July 23 – WWII: French marshal Philippe Pétain, who headed the Vichy government during WWII, goes on trial for treason.
- July 26 – Winston Churchill resigns as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom after his Conservative Party is soundly defeated by the Labour Party in the 1945 general election. Clement Attlee becomes the new Prime Minister. It is the first time that Labour has governed Britain with a majority in the House of Commons.
- July 26 – The Potsdam Declaration demands Japan's unconditional surrender; Article 12 permitting Japan to retain the reign of the Emperor has been deleted by President Truman.
- July 27 – WWII: Bombing of Aomori – Two USAAF B-29s dropped a total of 60,000 leaflets on the city of Aomori, Japan, warning civilians of an air raid and urge them to leave immediately.
- July 28 – An U.S. Army Air Forces B-25 bomber crashes into the Empire State Building, killing 14 people, including all on board.
- July 28 – WWII: Japan ambiguously rejects the Potsdam Declaration.
- July 29
- July 30 – WWII: The heavy cruiser USS Indianapolis is hit and sunk by torpedoes from the Japanese submarine I-58 in the Philippine Sea. Some 900 survivors jump into the sea and are adrift for up to four days. Nearly 600 die before help arrives. Captain Charles B. McVay III of the cruiser is later court-martialed and convicted.
- August 6 – WWII: Atomic bombing of Hiroshima: A United States B-29 Superfortress, the Enola Gay, drops an atomic bomb, codenamed "Little Boy", on Hiroshima, Japan, at 8:15 a.m. (local time). The atomic bombings are believed to have resulted in between 129,000 and 246,000 deaths.
- August 7 – U.S. President Harry Truman announces the successful atomic bombing of Hiroshima while he is returning from the Potsdam Conference aboard the U.S. Navy heavy cruiser USS Augusta (CA-31) in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.
- August 8
- The United Nations Charter is ratified by the United States Senate, and this nation becomes the third to join the new international organization.
- WWII: The Soviet Union declares war on Japan.
- August 9 – WWII:
- August 10 – WWII: Japan offers to surrender to the Allies, "provided this does not prejudice the sovereignty of the Emperor".
- August 11 – WWII: The Allies reply to the Japanese surrender offer by saying that Emperor Hirohito will be subject to the authority of the Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces.
- August 11–25 – Soviet troops complete occupation of Sakhalin.
- August 13 – The Zionist World Congress approaches the British government to discuss the founding of the country of Israel.
- August 14 – WWII: Emperor Hirohito accepts the terms of the Potsdam Declaration. His recorded announcement of this is smuggled out of the Tokyo Imperial Palace. At 19:00 hrs in Washington, D.C., U.S. President Harry S. Truman announces the Japanese surrender.
- August 15
- WWII: Gyokuon-hōsō: Emperor Hirohito's announcement of the unconditional surrender of Japan is broadcast on the radio a little after noon (Japan Standard Time). This is probably the first time an Emperor of Japan has been heard by the common people. Delivered in formal classical Japanese and without directly referring to surrender, the recorded speech is not immediately easily understood by ordinary people. The Allies call this day Victory over Japan Day (V-J Day). This ends the period of Japanese expansionism and begins the period of Occupation of Japan. Korea gains independence.
- Provisional International Civil Aviation Organization founded as a specialized agency of the United Nations.
- August 17
- Philippines President José P. Laurel issues an Executive Proclamation putting an end to the Second Philippine Republic, thus ending to his term as President of the Philippines.
- Proclamation of Indonesian Independence: Indonesian nationalists Sukarno and Mohammad Hatta declare the independence of the Republic of Indonesia, with Sukarno as president, igniting the Indonesian National Revolution against the Dutch Empire.
- The allegorical dystopian novella Animal Farm by George Orwell, a satire on Stalinism, is first published by Fredric Warburg in London.
- August 19 – Chinese Civil War: Mao Zedong and Chiang Kai-shek meet in Chongqing to discuss an end to hostilities between the Communists and the Nationalists.
- August 23 – Soviet–Japanese War – Joseph Stalin ordered conveying a Japanese army prisoner of war to the Soviet Union. (Japanese prisoners of war in the Soviet Union)
- August 30 – WWII: Vietnam's capital Hanoi is overthrown by the Viet Minh which ends the French occupation in what becomes North Vietnam and thus the southern provinces become South Vietnam. This ends the August Revolution.
- August 31
- WWII: Allied troops arrest German field marshal Walther von Brauchitsch.
- A team at American Cyanamid's Lederle Laboratories, Pearl River, New York, led by Yellapragada Subbarow, announces they have obtained folic acid in a pure crystalline form. This vitamin is abundant in green leaf vegetables, liver, kidney, and yeast.
- September 2 – WWII ends:
- Japanese general Tomoyuki Yamashita surrenders to Filipino and American forces at Kiangan, Ifugao.
- The final official Japanese Instrument of Surrender is accepted by the Supreme Allied Commander, General Douglas MacArthur, and Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz for the United States, and delegates from Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, The Netherlands, China, and others from a Japanese delegation led by Mamoru Shigemitsu, on board the American battleship USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay.
- General Douglas MacArthur is given the title of Supreme Commander Allied Powers, and is also tasked with the occupation of Japan.
- September 2 – Democratic Republic of Viet Nam is officially established, by Ho Chi Minh.
- September 4 – WWII: Japanese forces surrender on Wake Island after hearing word of their country's surrender.
- September 5
- Iva Toguri D'Aquino, a Japanese American suspected of being wartime radio propagandist "Tokyo Rose", is arrested in Yokohama.
- The Russian code clerk Igor Gouzenko comes forward with numerous documents implicating the Soviet Union in many spy rings in North America: both in the United States and in Canada.
- September 8
- American troops occupy southern Korea, while the Soviet Union occupies the north, with the dividing line being the 38th parallel of latitude. This arrangement proves to be the indirect beginning of a divided Korea which will lead to the Korean War in 1950.
- Hideki Tōjō, Japanese prime minister during most of WWII, attempts suicide to avoid facing a war crimes tribunal.
- September 9 – Chiang Kai-Shek officially accepts the Japanese capitulation at Nanking.
- September 10 – Vidkun Quisling is sentenced to death as a Nazi collaborator, in Norway.
- September 11
- September 12 – The Japanese Army formally surrenders to the British in Singapore.
- September 18 – Typhoon Makurazaki in Japan kills 3,746 people.
- September 20 – Mohandas Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru demand that all British troops depart India.
- October – Arthur C. Clarke puts forward the idea of a geosynchronous communications satellite in a Wireless World magazine article.
- October 1–15 – Operation Backfire: Three A4 rockets are launched near Cuxhaven in order to show Allied forces the rocket with liquid fuel.
- October 2– George Albert Smith becomes president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
- October 3–10 – The Detroit Tigers win the World Series against the Chicago Cubs; the Cubs have not returned to the World Series since.
- October 4 – The Partizan Belgrade sports society is founded in Belgrade, Serbia.
- October 5 – A strike by the Set Decorator's Union in Hollywood results in a riot.
- October 9 – Pierre Laval is sentenced to death for collaboration with the Nazis.
- October 14 – Czechoslovakia: A new provisional national assembly is elected.
- October 15 – WWII: Pierre Laval, the former premier of Vichy France, is shot to death by a firing squad for treason against France.
- October 15–21 – The Fifth Pan-African Congress is held in Manchester.
- October 16 – Food and Agriculture Organization established as a specialized agency of the United Nations.
- October 17 – A massive number of people, headed for CGT, gather in the Plaza de Mayo in Argentina to demand Juan Perón's release. This is known to the Peronists as the Día de la lealtad (Loyalty Day) and considered the founding day of Peronism.
- October 18 – Isaías Medina Angarita, president of Venezuela, is overthrown by a military coup.
- October 19 – Members of the Indonesian People's Army attack Anglo-Dutch forces in Indonesia.
- October 20 – Mongolians vote for independence from China.
- October 21 – Women's suffrage: Women are allowed to vote in France for the first time.
- October 22 – Rómulo Betancourt is named provisional president of Venezuela.
- October 23 – Jackie Robinson signs a contract with the Montreal Royals baseball team.
- October 24
- October 25 – Getúlio Vargas is deposed as president in Brazil. José Linhares is named as temporary president.
- October 27 – Indonesian separatists riot and fight Dutch and British security forces.
- October 29
- October 30 – The undivided country of India joins the United Nations. Pakistan is formed and joins later.
- November 1
- November 5 – Colombia joins the United Nations.
- November 6 – Indonesians reject an offer of autonomy from the Dutch.
- November 9 – Soo bahk do Moo Duk Kwan is founded.
- November 11 – Marshal Josip Broz Tito and the People's Front win a deciding majority (85%) in the Yugoslavian assembly.
- November 15
- November 16
- Charles de Gaulle is unanimously elected president, of France, by the provisional government.
- Cold War: The United States controversially imports 88 German scientists to help in the production of rocket technology.
- The Friendly Ghost, the first Noveltoon featuring Casper is released.
- The motion picture The Lost Weekend, starring Ray Milland, is released. The most realistic film portrayal of alcoholism up to this time, it wins several Academy Awards in the following year.
- Yeshiva College is founded in New York City.
- November 18 – The Tudeh party starts a bloodless coup and will form Azerbaijan within days. Soviet troops prevent Iranian troops from getting involved.
- November 20 – The Nuremberg Trials begin: Trials against 22 Nazi war criminals of WWII start at the Nuremberg Palace of Justice.
- November 26 – U.S. Ambassador to China Patrick J. Hurley resigns after he is unable to broker a deal between Chiang Kai-shek and Mao Tse Tung.
- November 28 – An earthquake in Balochistan (Pakistan) causes a tsunami and kills 4,000.
- November 29
- The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia is declared (this day is celebrated as Republic Day until the 1990s). Marshal Tito is named president.
- Assembly of the world's first general purpose electronic computer, the Electronic Numerical Integrator Analyzer and Computer (ENIAC), is completed in the United States, covering 1,800 square feet (170 m2) of floor space, and the first set of calculations is run on it.
- December 2
- December 3 – Communist demonstrations in Athens presage the Greek Civil War.
- December 4 – By a vote of 65–7, the United States Senate approves the entry of the United States into the United Nations.
- December 5 – A flight of United States Navy TBF Avenger torpedo bombers known as Flight 19 disappears on a training exercise from Naval Air Station Fort Lauderdale.
- December 21 – General George S. Patton dies from injuries sustained in a car accident on December 9 in Germany.
- December 27
- A team at Oak Ridge National Laboratory led by Charles Coryell discovers chemical element 61, the only one still missing between 1 and 96 on the periodic table, which they will name promethium. Found by analysis of fission products of irradiated uranium fuel, its discovery is not made public until 1947.
- The first geothermal milk pasteurization is done in Klamath Falls, Oregon.
- Astrid Lindgren's children's book Pippi Långstrump is published in Sweden and its English translation as Pippi Longstocking is also issued.
- The Estonian flag disappears. The flag is eventually raised again on 24 February 1989.
- January 3
- January 4 – Richard R. Schrock, American chemist, Nobel Prize laureate
- January 10
- January 12 – André Bicaba, Burkinabé sprinter
- January 14 – Einar Hákonarson, Icelandic painter
- January 15
- January 20 – Robert Olen Butler, American writer
- January 25 – Leigh Taylor-Young, American actress
- January 26 – Jacqueline du Pré, English cellist (d. 1987)
- January 27 – Harold Cardinal, Cree political leader, writer, and lawyer (d. 2005)
- January 29
- January 30 – Michael Dorris, American author (d. 1997)
- January 31 – Joseph Kosuth, American artist
- February 2 – David D. Friedman, American economist
- February 3
- February 6 – Bob Marley, Jamaican reggae singer, songwriter and musician (ɗ. 1981)
- February 7 – Gerald Davies, Welsh rugby player
- February 9 – Mia Farrow, American actress
- February 12 – Maud Adams, Swedish actress
- February 14 – Prince Hans-Adam II of Liechtenstein
- February 15 – Douglas Hofstadter, American cognitive scientist
- February 16 – Jeremy Bulloch, English actor
- February 17 – Brenda Fricker, Irish actress
- February 20 – Henry Polic II, American actor (d. 2013)
- February 24 – Barry Bostwick, American actor
- February 25
- February 26 – Marta Kristen, Norwegian actress
- February 27 – Carl Anderson, American singer and actor (d. 2004)
- February 28 – Bubba Smith, American football player and actor (d. 2011)
- March 1 – Dirk Benedict, American actor
- March 4
- March 7
- March 8
- March 9 – Dennis Rader, American serial killer
- March 13 – Anatoly Fomenko, Russian mathematician
- March 15 – A. K. Faezul Huq, Bangladeshi lawyer and politician (d. 2007)
- March 17 – Katri Helena, Finnish singer
- March 19 – Cem Karaca, Turkish musician (d. 2004)
- March 20
- March 26
- March 29
- March 30 – Eric Clapton, English rock guitarist
- March 31 – Gabe Kaplan, American actor, comedian, and professional poker player
- April 2 – Linda Hunt, American actress
- April 4 – Daniel Cohn-Bendit, French activist
- April 7 – Werner Schroeter, German film director
- April 9 – Peter Gammons, American baseball sportswriter
- April 12 – Lee Jong-wook, Korean Director-General of the World Health Organization (d. 2006)
- April 13
- April 14 – Ritchie Blackmore, English rock guitarist (Deep Purple)
- April 21 – Diana Darvey, British actress, singer and dancer (d. 2000)
- April 24 – Doug Clifford, American drummer (Creedence Clearwater Revival)
- April 25
- April 27 – August Wilson, American playwright (d. 2005)
- April 29
- May 1 – Rita Coolidge, American pop singer
- May 2 – Sarah Weddington, American attorney
- May 4 – Narasimhan Ram, Indian journalist
- May 5 – Kurt Loder, American film critic, author, and television personality
- May 6
- May 8 – Keith Jarrett, American musician
- May 9 – Jupp Heynckes, German football manager and former footballer
- May 14 – Yochanan Vollach, Israeli footballer and president of Maccabi Haifa, CEO
- May 15 – Duarte Pio, Duke of Braganza, heir to the Portuguese crown
- May 16 – Nicky Chinn, English rock songwriter (The Sweet, Suzi Quatro)
- May 17 – Tony Roche, Australian tennis player
- May 19 – Pete Townshend, English rock guitarist and lyricist (The Who)
- May 21
- May 22 – Victoria Wyndham, American actress (Another World)
- May 23
- May 24 – Priscilla Presley, American actress and businesswoman
- May 28 – John Fogerty, American rock singer (Creedence Clearwater Revival)
- May 29 – Gary Brooker, English pianist and singer (Procol Harum)
- May 30 – Gladys Horton, American singer (The Marvelettes) (d. 2011)
- May 31
- June 1 – Frederica von Stade, American mezzo-soprano
- June 2 – Jon Peters, American film producer
- June 3 – Hale Irwin, American professional golfer
- June 4
- June 5
- June 6 – David Dukes, American actor (d. 2000)
- June 7 – Wolfgang Schüssel, Chancellor of Austria
- June 8 – Steven Fromholz, American singer-songwriter (d. 2014)
- June 9 – Nike Wagner, German woman of the theater
- June 10 – Benny Gallagher, Scottish singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, half of the duo Gallagher and Lyle
- June 11 – Adrienne Barbeau, American actress, television personality and author
- June 12 – Pat Jennings, Northern Irish footballer player
- June 13 – Rodney P. Rempt, American admiral
- June 14 – Jörg Immendorff, German painter
- June 15 – Françoise Chandernagor, French writer
- June 16
- June 17
- June 19
- June 20 – Anne Murray, Canadian singer
- June 24 – George Pataki, Governor of New York
- June 25 – Carly Simon, American singer-songwriter
- June 26 – Dwight York, American musician, fashion consultant, cult leader, and child molester
- June 28 – David Knights, British bassist (Procol Harum)
- June 29 – Chandrika Kumaratunga, President of Sri Lanka
- July 1 – Debbie Harry, American rock singer (Blondie)
- July 5 – Lu Sheng-yen, leader of the True Buddha School
- July 6 – Burt Ward, American actor
- July 7
- July 8 – Micheline Calmy-Rey, Swiss Federal Councilor
- July 9 – Dean Koontz, American writer
- July 10 – Ron Glass, American actor
- July 11 – Richard Wesley, American playwright and screenwriter
- July 15 – Jürgen Möllemann, German politician (d. 2003)
- July 16 – Victor Sloan, Irish artist
- July 17 – Alexander, Crown Prince of Yugoslavia
- July 20
- July 21 – John Lowe, English darts player
- July 24 – Azim Premji, Indian businessman
- July 26 – Dame Helen Mirren, British actress
- July 28 – Jim Davis, American cartoonist
- July 30 – Roger Dobkowitz, American game show producer
- August 1 – Douglas D. Osheroff, American physicist, Nobel Prize laureate
- August 2 – Joanna Cassidy, American actress
- August 4 – Alan Mulally, American businessman, former CEO of the Ford Motor Company
- August 5
- August 6 – Ron Jones, British director (d. 1993)
- August 7 – Alan Page, American football player
- August 9 – Posy Simmonds, English cartoonist
- August 14
- August 19 – Ian Gillan, English rock singer (Deep Purple)
- August 22 – Ron Dante, American rock singer, songwriter, and record producer (The Archies)
- August 24 – Vincent K. McMahon, American professional wrestling promoter, chairman and CEO of WWE
- August 25 – Daniel Hulet, Belgian cartoonist (d. 2011)
- August 26 – Tom Ridge, American politician
- August 31
- September 1 – Mustafa Balel, Turkish writer
- September 4 – Danny Gatton, American guitarist (d. 1994)
- September 5 – Al Stewart, Scottish singer-songwriter
- September 7 – Jacques Lemaire, Canadian ice hockey coach
- September 8
- September 9 – Doug Ingle, American songwriter and singer for Iron Butterfly
- September 10 – José Feliciano, Puerto Rican singer
- September 11 – Franz Beckenbauer, German footballer and coach
- September 14 – Martin Tyler, British sports broadcaster
- September 15 – Jessye Norman, American soprano
- September 16 – Pat Stevens, American voice actress (d. 2010)
- September 17 – Phil Jackson, American basketball coach
- September 19 – Randolph Mantooth, American actor and motivational speaker
- September 20
- September 21
- September 23 – Paul Petersen, child actor and advocate of other child actors
- September 25 – Dee Dee Warwick, American singer (d. 2008)
- September 26 – Bryan Ferry, English singer-songwriter and musician (Roxy Music)
- September 27
- September 29 – Nadezhda Chizhova, Russian athlete
- September 30 – Ehud Olmert, 12th Prime Minister of Israel
- October 1 – Donny Hathaway, American soul singer-songwriter (d. 1979)
- October 2 – Don McLean, American rock singer-songwriter
- October 3
- October 4 – Clifton Davis, American actor
- October 5 – Brian Connolly, Scottish musician
- October 6 – Ivan Graziani, Italian singer-songwriter (d. 1997)
- October 12
- October 13 – Susan Stafford, American television presenter
- October 15 – Jim Palmer, American baseball player
- October 18
- October 19 – John Lithgow, American actor
- October 20 – George Wyner, American actor
- October 22 – Yvan Ponton, Canadian actor and sportscaster
- October 24 – Eugenie Scott, Executive Director of the National Center for Science Education
- October 25
- October 27
- October 29 – Melba Moore, American singer and actress
- October 29 – Daniel Albright, American literary critic and musicologist
- October 30 – Henry Winkler, American actor, producer and director
- October 31 – Brian Doyle-Murray, American actor
- November 3 – Gerd Müller, German footballer
- November 5 – Jacques Lanctôt, Canadian terrorist
- November 7
- November 12
- November 15 – Anni-Frid Lyngstad, Norwegian rock singer (ABBA)
- November 18
- November 21 – Goldie Hawn, American actress
- November 23 – Jerry Harris, American sculptor
- November 26
- November 27 – Barbara Anderson, American actress
- November 30 – Mary Millington, British porn star (d. 1979)
- December 1 – Bette Midler, American actress, comedienne and singer
- December 2 – Charles "Tex" Watson, American prisoner
- December 7 – Clive Russell, English actor
- December 9 – Michael Nouri, American actor
- December 13 – Kathy Garver, American actress, author and online radio hostess
- December 16 – Patti Deutsch, American voice actress
- December 17
- December 19 – Elaine Joyce, American actress and game show panelist
- December 20
- December 22 – Diane Sawyer, American news journalist
- December 24
- December 25 – Gary Sandy, American actor (WKRP in Cincinnati)
- December 26 – John Walsh, American media personality
- December 28 – Birendra of Nepal (d. 2001)
- December 30 – Davy Jones, English actor and singer (The Monkees) (d. 2012)
- December 31
- January 2 – Bertram Ramsay, British admiral (b. 1883)
- January 3 – Edgar Cayce, American so-called "psychic" (b. 1877)
- January 6
- January 7 – Thomas McGuire, American World War II fighter ace (b. 1920)
- January 9
- January 21 – Archibald Murray, British Army general (b. 1860)
- January 22 - Else Lasker-Schüler, German poet and author (b. 1869)
- January 23 – Newton E. Mason, United States Navy rear admiral (b. 1850)
- January 30 – William Goodenough, British admiral (b. 1867)
- January 31 – Eddie Slovik, American soldier (executed) (b. 1920)
- February 1 – Prince Kiril of Bulgaria (b. 1895)
- February 2
- February 3 – Roland Freisler, Nazi German judge (b. 1893)
- February 5
- February 10 – Anacleto Díaz, Filipino jurist (murdered during the Battle of Manila) (b. 1878)
- February 11 – Al Dubin, Swiss songwriter (b. 1891)
- February 12 – Antonio Villa-Real, Filipino jurist (murdered during the Battle of Manila) (b. 1878)
- February 15 – Helmut Möckel, German youth leader and politician (b. 1909)
- February 17 – Gabrielle Weidner, Belgian World War II heroine (b. 1914)
- February 21 – Eric Liddell, Scottish runner (b. 1902)
- February 25 – Mário de Andrade, Brazilian writer and photographer (b. 1893)
- March – Margot Frank (b. 1926) and her younger sister Anne Frank, German-born Jewish diarist (typhus) (b. 1929)
- March 2 – Emily Carr, Canadian artist (b. 1871)
- March 3 – Aleksandra Samusenko, Soviet WWII tank commander (b. 1922)
- March 4
- March 5 – Albert Richards, British war artist (b. 1919)
- March 8 - Frederick Bligh Bond, English architect (b. 1864)
- March 16 – Börries von Münchhausen, German poet (b. 1874)
- March 18 – William Grover-Williams, French race car driver and war hero (b. 1903)
- March 19 – Friedrich Fromm, German Nazi official (b. 1888)
- March 20 – Lord Alfred Douglas, English poet (b. 1870)
- March 22
- March 23 – Elisabeth de Rothschild, French WWII heroine (executed) (b. 1902)
- March 26
- March 29 – Ferenc Csik, Hungarian swimmer (b. 1913)
- March 30 – Élise Rivet, French nun and war heroine (b. 1890)
- March 31
- April – Auguste van Pels, German-Jewish housemate of Anne Frank (b. 1900)
- April 5 – Huldreich Georg Früh, Swiss composer (b. 1903)
- April 7 – Elizabeth Bibesco, British writer (b. 1897) (pneumonia)
- April 9
- April 10
- April 12 – Franklin D. Roosevelt, 32nd President of the United States (b. 1882)
- April 18
- April 21 – Walter Model, German field marshal (b. 1891)
- April 22 – Käthe Kollwitz, German artist (b. 1867)
- April 24 – Ernst-Robert Grawitz, German Reichsphysician (S.S. and Police) in the Third Reich (b. 1899)
- April 27 – Halit Ziya Uşaklıgil, Turkish author (b. 1867)
- April 28
- April 29 – Malcolm McGregor, American actor (b. 1892)
- April 30
- May 1
- May 2 – Martin Bormann, German Nazi leader (b. 1900)
- May 4 – Fedor von Bock, German field marshal (b. 1880)
- May 5 – Peter van Pels, German-Jewish love interest of diarist Anne Frank (b. 1926)
- May 8
- May 11 – Kiyoshi Ogawa, Japanese kamikaze pilot (born 1922)
- May 14 – Heber J. Grant, 7th president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (b. 1856)
- May 15 – Charles Williams, British author (b. 1886)
- May 17 – Bobby Hutchins, Our Gang films child actor (b. 1925)
- May 18 – William Joseph Simmons, American founder of the second KKK (b. 1880)
- May 19 – Philipp Bouhler, German Nazi leader (b. 1899)
- May 23 – Heinrich Himmler, German head of the SS (suicide) (b. 1900)
- May 24 – Robert Ritter von Greim, German field marshal (suicide) (b. 1892)
- May 31 – Odilo Globocnik, Austrian Nazi leader (suicide) (b. 1904)
- June 8 – Robert Desnos, French poet and resistance fighter (b. 1900)
- June 15 – Nikola Avramov, Bulgarian painter (b. 1897)
- June 16
- June 18 – Simon Bolivar Buckner, Jr., American general, KIA on Okinawa (b. 1886)
- June 23 – Giuseppina Tuissi, Italian resistance member (b. 1923)
- July 5 – John Curtin, 14th Prime Minister of Australia (b. 1885)
- July 12 – Wolfram Freiherr von Richthofen, German field marshal (b. 1895)
- July 13 – Alla Nazimova, Russian actress (b. 1879)
- July 16 – Addison Randall, American actor (b. 1906)
- July 17 – Ernst Busch, German field marshal (b. 1885)
- July 20 – Paul Valéry, French poet (b. 1871)
- July 28 – Margot Asquith, Countess of Oxford and Asquith (b. 1864)
- July 31 – Artemio Ricarte, Filipino general (b. 1866)
- August 2 – Pietro Mascagni, Italian composer (b. 1863)
- August 9 – Harry Hillman, American athlete (b. 1881)
- August 10 – Robert Goddard, American rocket scientist (b. 1882)
- August 15
- August 16 – Takijirō Ōnishi, Japanese admiral (b. 1891)
- August 18 – Subhas Chandra Bose, Indian political leader (b. 1897)
- August 19 – Tomás Burgos, Chilean philanthropist (b.1875)
- August 25 – Willis Augustus Lee, American admiral (b. 1888)
- August 26 – Franz Werfel, Austrian writer (b. 1890)
- August 31 – Stefan Banach, Polish mathematician (b. 1892)
- September 1 – Frank Craven, American actor (b. 1881)
- September 6 – John S. McCain, Sr., American admiral (b. 1884)
- September 12 – Sugiyama Hajime, Japanese general (b. 1880)
- September 15 – Anton Webern, Austrian composer (b. 1883)
- September 16 – John McCormack, Irish tenor (b. 1884)
- September 20
- September 24 – Johannes Hans Geiger, German physicist and inventor (b. 1882)
- September 26
- October 10 – Joseph Darnand, Vichy France politician (executed) (b. 1897)
- October 13 – Milton S. Hershey, American chocolate tycoon (b. 1857)
- October 15 – Pierre Laval, Prime Minister of France (executed) (b. 1883)
- October 19
- October 21 – Henry Armetta, Italian actor (b. 1888)
- October 24 – Vidkun Quisling, Norwegian traitor (executed) (b. 1887)
- October 25 – Robert Ley, German Nazi politician (suicide) (b. 1890)
- October 26 – Paul Pelliot, French explorer (b. 1878)
- October 28 – Gilbert Emery, American actor (b. 1875)
- October 31 – Henry Ainley, English actor (b. 1879)
- November 7 – Gus Edwards, American songwriter (b. 1879)
- November 8 – August von Mackensen, German field marshal (b. 1849)
- November 11 – Jerome Kern, American composer (b. 1885)
- November 16 – Sigurður Eggerz, Prime Minister of Iceland during World War I (b. 1875)
- November 20 – Francis William Aston, English chemist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1877)
- November 21
- November 23 – Charles Armijo Woodruff, 11th Governor of American Samoa (b. 1884)
- November 25 – Doris Keane, American stage actress (b. 1881)
- November 28 – Dwight F. Davis, American tennis player (b. 1879)
- December 4 – Thomas Hunt Morgan, American geneticist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (b. 1866)
- December 4 – Thomas Hunt Morgan, American biologist, geneticist and embryologist, Nobel Prize in Physiology (b. 1866)
- December 5 – Cosmo Lang, Archbishop of Canterbury (b. 1864)
- December 13
- Juana Bormann, Nazi concentration camp guard (executed) (b. 1893)
- Irma Grese, warden at Bergen-Belsen concentration camp (executed) (b. 1923)
- Josef Kramer, commandant of Bergen-Belsen concentration camp (executed) (b. 1906)
- Elisabeth Volkenrath, supervisor at Nazi concentration camps (executed) (b. 1919)
- December 14 – Forrester Harvey, Irish actor (b. 1884)
- December 16 – Fumimaro Konoe, Prime Minister of Japan (suicide) (b. 1891)
- December 21 – George S. Patton, U.S. general (car accident) (b. 1885)
- December 22 – Otto Neurath, Austrian philosopher and political economist (b. 1892)
- December 25 – Duy Tan, emperor of Vietnam (b. 1899)
- December 26 – Roger Keyes, 1st Baron Keyes, British admiral (b. 1872)
- December 28 – Theodore Dreiser, American author (b. 1871)
- Physics – Wolfgang Pauli
- Chemistry – Artturi Ilmari Virtanen
- Physiology or Medicine – Sir Alexander Fleming, Ernst Boris Chain, Sir Howard Walter Florey
- Literature – Gabriela Mistral
- Peace – Cordell Hull
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- "Penicillin Pills May Replace Injection". The Milwaukee Sentinel. 1945-02-16. Retrieved 2012-05-22.
- "SS General von Steuben [+1945]". WreckSite. Retrieved 2010-12-06.
- Guinness Book of World Records. 2008. p. 137.
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- Ian Buruma. Year Zero: A History of 1945 (Penguin Press; 2013) 368 pages; covers liberation, revenge, decolonization, and the rise of the United Nations.
- Keith Lowe. Savage Continent: Europe in the Aftermath of World War II (2012) excerpt and text search
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