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V-E Day: The World War II Defeat of the Nazis

Victory celebrations for America and its allies in Europe

crowded street of returning soldiers and others embracing at the announcement of nazi defeat

Bettman/Getty Images

En español | Nazi Germany's military leaders signed surrender documents on May 7, 1945, marking the end of nearly six years of war throughout Europe. When the news was announced a day later, mass celebrations erupted across Europe and America as millions took to the streets, cementing May 8's legacy as V-E Day — for victory in Europe. President Harry S. Truman dedicated the day to former President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who had died just weeks earlier.

"Our victory is only half over,” Truman said in reference to the fighting that continued in the Pacific with Japan for three more months.

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