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Diary September 1, 1939

German motor column is crossing the Polish border.
German motor column is crossing the Polish border.
WW2 War Diary for Friday, September 1, 1939:


GERMANY INVADES POLAND (code name, Weiss = ‘White’): 48 divisions (6 Panzer) and 1,600 aircraft invade without formal declaration of war on 3 fronts from Eastern Germany, East Prussia and Slovakia. Luftwaffe tactical raids on Polish airfields, communications and troop concentrations; Polish Air Force destroyed after three days.

Air War

Strategic bombing raids on Warsaw by He 111 s.

Sea War

German Navy blockades the Baltic. Training ship (old battleship) Schleswig-Holstein bombards small Polish garrison at Westerplatte, near Danzig.


Poland: Government appeals for British and French intervention under terms of Mutual Assistance Treaties. Britain and France demand the withdrawal of German forces from Poland.
USA: President Roosevelt calls for ban on indiscriminate bombing of civilians and undefended towns.
Italy: The government dissociates herself from the conflict.

Home Fronts

Britain: General mobilization proclaimed (the Fleet mobilized on August 31). Evacuation of 3 million women, children and invalids from cities begins (completed September 3). ARP (Air Raid Precautions) introduced and the ‘black­out’ enforced from sunset. British Railways taken under Government control.
France: General mobilization and ‘state of siege’ (martial law) proclaimed.
Germany: Hitler speaks in the Reichstag, Berlin: justifies Russo-German Pact (August 23), invasion of Poland, and the seizure of Danzig and the Polish Corridor; threatens the use of ‘secret weapons’; names Goring and Hess as his successors.

Occupied countries

Czechoslovakia: Gestapo arrest thousands of prominent Czechs and deport them to concentration camps.


USA: General Marshall appointed US Army Chief of Staff.

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