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3 May 1945
  • US Ninth Army made contact with Soviet forces near Wismar, Germany. ww2dbase [TH]
  • 97 USAAF B-29 bombers dropped mines off of a number of Japanese coastal industrial centers. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Operation Kikusui No. 5 was launched off Okinawa, Japan, participated by about 75 Japanese Navy and 50 Japanese Army special attack and escorting aircraft; they sank one destroyer and damaged four other ships. On the same day, a special attack boat damaged a transport also off Okinawa. ww2dbase [Okinawa Campaign | CPC]
  • Japanese Prime Minister Suzuki maintained "faith in certain victory" in a public statement despite Germany defeat. ww2dbase [Kantaro Suzuki | CPC]
  • The Allied military government in western Germany began to form. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • Admiral D├Ânitz established the seat of his government in Denmark. ww2dbase [Karl D├Ânitz | CPC]
  • Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio de Oliveira Salazar sent a Foreign Ministry official to the German Embassy offering his condolences over the death of Adolf Hitler. Meanwhile, the Portuguese government declared two days of mourning for the recently deceased German leader. ww2dbase [CPC]
  • RAF Typhoon fighter-bombers, looking for ships transporting German troops to Norway where it was believed they planned to make a last stand, attacked and sank the troopships Cap Arcona and Thielbek, which were actually loaded with concentration camp inmates under transportation. The full death toll had never been established but could be as high as 8,000 from the two ships, including crews and SS guards. ww2dbase [Discovery of Concentration Camps and the Holocaust | AC]
  • USS Baya fired six torpedoes at a Japanese oiler in the Gulf of Siam; all torpedoes missed. ww2dbase [Baya | CPC]
  • HMS Cumberland joined Task Force 68 with FS Richelieu, HMS Shah, HMS Empress, HMS Ceylon and three fleet destroyers for attacks on shipping off coast of Burma. ww2dbase [Cumberland | Richelieu | DS]
  • A group of prominent prisoners of war were allowed to move toward American lines, with SS guards in escort, from Markt Pongau near Salzburg in occupied Austria per the orders of SS-Obergruppenf├╝hrer Gottlob Berger who wished to curry favor with the Allies as the European War neared its end. ww2dbase [Markt Pongau | CPC]
  • Walter Dornberger, having already been detained by American troops on the previous day in Austria, was officially listed as under arrest. ww2dbase [Walter Dornberger | CPC]
  • Werhner von Braun, having already been detained by American troops on the previous day in Austria, was officially listed as under arrest. ww2dbase [Wernher von Braun | CPC]
  • Rangoon, Burma was captured by Indian 26th Division with little resistance. Fleeing Japanese were slaughtered not just by British and Commonwealth troops but by Burmese guerrillas and tribesmen who rose up against their former occupiers. ww2dbase [Battle of Rangoon | Rangoon | AC]
Caroline Islands
  • Submarine I-369 departed Truk, Caroline Islands. ww2dbase [I-369 | Truk | CPC]
  • Oliver Leese and Louis Mountbatten met at Kandy, Ceylon; Leese recommended William Slim be relieved now that the Burma campaign was effectively completed. ww2dbase [Oliver Leese | Kandy | CPC]
  • A German delegation met with British Field Marshal Montgomery on Luneberg Heath, outside Hamburg, Germany, offering the surrender of all their forces in northwestern Germany - A total of more than one million men. ww2dbase [Bernard Montgomery | Hamburg | AC]
  • Hamburg, Germany was declared an open city and surrendered to British Second Army. In the harbor, the Germans scuttled 59 merchant ships and 600 smaller craft to prevent capture. ww2dbase [Hamburg | TH]
  • US Third Army crossed the Inn River in Germany. ww2dbase [Southern Germany Campaign | TH]
  • U-2501 was scuttled at 0708 hours in Hamburg, Germany. ww2dbase [U-2501 | Hamburg | CPC]
  • While beached on the shore of Heikendorfer Bucht near Kiel, Germany, Emden was scuttled by her own crew with demolition charges to prevent capture. ww2dbase [Emden | Schleswig-Holstein | CPC]
  • Fleet tender Hai was sunk by British Typhoon fighter bombers at Kiel, Germany. ww2dbase [F3 | Kiel, Schleswig-Holstein | CPC]
  • U-4714 was scuttled in Kiel, Germany to prevent Allied capture. ww2dbase [U-4714 | Kiel, Schleswig-Holstein | CPC]
  • Z43 was scuttled at Kiel, Germany to prevent Allied capture. ww2dbase [Z43 | Kiel, Schleswig-Holstein | CPC]
  • U-56 was scuttled at Kiel, Germany to prevent capture. ww2dbase [U-56 | Kiel, Schleswig-Holstein | CPC]
  • US authorities held a funeral for 21 of the former prisoners of Flossenb├╝rg Concentration Camp. ww2dbase [Flossenb├╝rg Concentration Camp | Flossenb├╝rg, Bayreuth | CPC]
  • USS Dragonet departed Guam, Mariana Islands. ww2dbase [Dragonet | CPC]
  • Barbers Point Naval Air Station: The following squadrons and air groups aboard at this time: Carrier Air Group 100 (CVG-100); Carrier Night Air Group 91 (CVGN-91); Carrier Night Air Group 53 (CVGN-53); Air Photographic Squadron 3 (VD-3); Air Group 6; CASU - Photographic Training Unit. ww2dbase [Barbers Point Naval Air Station | Ewa, Oahu | DS]
  • Former Russian White Army officer and more recently German collaborator Boris Smyslowsky successfully escaped Soviet capture by crossing the border into Liechtenstein. ww2dbase [CPC]
Marshall Islands
  • Destroyer USS Shaw departed Eniwetok, Marshall Islands bound for Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. ww2dbase [Shaw | Eniwetok | DS]
Netherlands Pacific Ocean
  • USS Springer sank Japanese Coastal Defense Vessel No. 25 in the Yellow Sea, hitting her with 3 of 7 torpedoes fired. ww2dbase [Springer | Yellow Sea | CPC]
Photo(s) dated 3 May 1945
Men of the UK 6th Airborne Division greeting the crew of a Russian Army T-34/85 tank near Wismar, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany, 3 May 1945Universal carriers of British 1/5th QueenCromwell tanks of British 7th Armored Division, Hamburg, Germany, 3 May 1945A Cromwell tank guarding a bridge over the Elbe River, Hamburg, Germany, 3 May 1945
See all photos dated 3 May 1945

3 May 1945 Interactive Map

Timeline Section Founder: Thomas Houlihan
Contributors: Alan Chanter, C. Peter Chen, Thomas Houlihan, Hugh Martyr, David Stubblebine
Special Thanks: Rory Curtis

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Famous WW2 Quote
"I have returned. By the grace of Almighty God, our forces stand again on Philippine soil."

General Douglas MacArthur at Leyte, 17 Oct 1944

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