1938 saw a world on the edge of war once again. World War II was to begin in 1939, so it is no surprise that most of the major events of 1938 involve events that led up to that war.
In February, Adolf Hitler abolished the old German War Ministry and established the High Command of the Armed Forces in its stead. This allowed him to take direct control of the German military. Hitler continued to move quickly. Just the following month, German troops occupied Austria and annexation was officially declared. Austria was now officially a part of Hitler’s Third Reich. Also in March, Hitler’s counterpart in Italy, Benito Mussolini also took greater control of his country’s military. Mussolini was declared First Marshal of the Empire, on equal footing with Italy’s King Victor Emmanuel III, who had not yet abdicated his throne.
Tensions were very high in 1938 between Germany and Czechoslovakia over the Sudetenland, a region of Czechoslovakia that held a high concentration of ethnic Germans. Hitler wanted the territory to be ceded to Germany, using the poor surrender terms of World War I to justify Germany’s claim to the territory. The Sudetenland had been part of Austria until the end of the First World War. After coming to the brink of war, the Sudetenland was ceded to Germany at the Munich Agreement. British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain headed the negotiations, and at the conclusion of the talks he tragically and ironically declared “Peace for our time.”
Significant steps were also taken this year toward the Nazi Holocaust. In October, Jewish passports were invalidated in Germany. Those Jews who needed a passport for the purposes of emigration were given passports with the letter “J” (“Jude” or “Jew”) marked on them. On November 9, the infamous Kristallnacht occurred, during which Nazi activists looted and burned thousands of Jewish businesses and places of worship.
All Academy Awards Prize winners of the 11st edition of the Oscar ceremony
You Can't Take It with You
Best supporting actress
Time Person of the Year
Who was the person of the year of 1938?
All Nobel Prize winners of 1938
- Enrico Fermi
- Nansen International Office For Refugees
- Pearl S. Buck
- Richard Kuhn
Physiology or Medicine
- Corneille Heymans
Which were the most popular Movies released in those months?
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Which were the important events of 1938?
- 02 Jan 1938 Book publisher Simon and Schuster is founded.
- 03 Jan 1938 The March of Dimes is established by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
- 05 Jan 1938 US Justice George Sutherland retires from the US Supreme Court at age 75.
- 06 Jan 1938 Bronze memorial statue of Henry Hudson erected in the Bronx.
- 07 Jan 1938 Joseph P. Kennedy is appointed American Ambassador to Great Britain, and Hugh R. Wilson is appointed Ambassador to Germany.
- 11 Jan 1938 Frances Moulton is the first woman to become president of a U.S. national bank.
- 12 Jan 1938 The German War Minister Field Marshal Werner von Blomberg marries Eva Gruhn in Berlin Hermann Göring is best man at the wedding.
- 13 Jan 1938 The Disney film Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs has its New York premiere, at Radio City Music Hall.
- 14 Jan 1938 National Society for the Legalization of Euthanasia formed (New York).
- 15 Jan 1938 Solicitor General Stanley Reed is appointed to the US Supreme Court.
- 16 Jan 1938 Benny Goodman refuses to play Carnegie Hall when black members of his band were barred from performing
- 17 Jan 1938 Supreme Soviet elects Michail Kalinin as presidium chairman.
- 18 Jan 1938 Pitcher Grover Cleveland Alexander is elected to the Hall of Fame.
- 19 Jan 1938 General Motors begins mass production of diesel engines.
- 20 Jan 1938 King Farouk of Egypt marries Queen Farida Zulficar in Cairo.
- 21 Jan 1938 Dutch government starts obligatory unemployment insurance.
- 22 Jan 1938 Thornton Wilder's play ''Our Town'' is performed for the first time anywhere in Princeton, New Jersey. It premieres in New York City on February 4.
- 25 Jan 1938 A brilliant aurora borealis described variously as quota curtain of firequot and a quothuge blood-red beam of lightquot startles people across Europe and is visible as far south as Gibraltar.
- 28 Jan 1938 The World Land Speed Record on a public road is broken by driver Rudolf Caracciola in the Mercedes-Benz W195 at a speed of 432.7 kilometres per hour (268.9 mph).
- 04 Feb 1938 Our Town, by Thornton Wilder opens on Broadway
- 05 Feb 1938 Hans Engnestangen skates world record 500 metre (41.8 seconds).
- 06 Feb 1938 Black Sunday at Bondi Beach, Sydney, Australia: 300 swimmers are dragged out to sea in 3 freak waves 80 lifesavers save all but 5.
- 10 Feb 1938 King Carol II of Romania drives out dictator Goga.
- 11 Feb 1938 Steve Casey beats Lou Thesz in Boston, to become wrestling champion.
- 12 Feb 1938 Austrian chancellor Schuschnigg visits Hitler in Berchtesgaden
- 14 Feb 1938 The British naval base at Singapore begins operations.
- 16 Feb 1938 US Federal Crop Insurance program authorized.
- 19 Feb 1938 Soviet arctic ice research station North Pole 1 evacuated, Denmark.
- 20 Feb 1938 UK Foreign Secretary Eden resigns, says Prime Minister Chamberlain appeased Germany
- 23 Feb 1938 Joe Louis knocks out Nathan Mann in three rounds for heavyweight boxing title.
- 24 Feb 1938 Du Pont begins commercial production of nylon toothbrush bristles.
- 25 Feb 1938 British Lord Halifax becomes Foreign Minister.
- 26 Feb 1938 US female Figure Skating championship won by Joan Tozzer.
- 27 Feb 1938 Britain and France recognize Franco government in Spain.
- 02 Mar 1938 Trials of Soviet leaders begins in the Soviet Union.
- 03 Mar 1938 Oil is discovered in Saudi Arabia.
- 07 Mar 1938 The US signs reciprocal trade treaty with Czechoslovakia.
- 11 Mar 1938 Artur Seyss-Inquart replaces Kurt von Schuschnigg as Chancellor of Austria; German troops also entered the country
- 12 Mar 1938 Nazi Germany invades Austria (Anschluss)
- 13 Mar 1938 World News Roundup is broadcast for the first time on CBS Radio in the United States.
- 14 Mar 1938 French Premier Léon Blum reassures the Czechoslovak government that France will honor its treaty obligations to aid Czechoslovakia in event of German invasion.
- 15 Mar 1938 Soviet Union announces officially that Nikholai Bukharin has been executed.
- 16 Mar 1938 Temple defeats Colorado to win 1st NIT
- 17 Mar 1938 Poland presents an ultimatum to Lithuania, to establish normal diplomatic relations that were severed over the Vilnius Region.
- 18 Mar 1938 Mexico takes control of foreign-owned oil properties
- 23 Mar 1938 Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis frees 74 Saint Louis Cardinals' minor league players.
- 27 Mar 1938 Second Sino-Japanese War: The Battle of Taierzhuang takes place.
- 01 Apr 1938 Joe Louis knocks out Harry Thomas in five rounds for heavyweight boxing title.
- 04 Apr 1938 5th Golf Masters Championship: Henry Picard wins, shooting a 285.
- 05 Apr 1938 Anti-Jewish riots break out in Dabrowa, Poland.
- 08 Apr 1938 The House of Representatives kills the Reorganization Bill.
- 10 Apr 1938 2nd government of Blum replaced by Daladier government in France
- 12 Apr 1938 First US law requiring medical tests (syphilis test) for marriage licenses (New York).
- 15 Apr 1938 Disney's Donald Duck film Donald's Nephews is released to theaters in the USA. Characters Huey, Dewey, and Louie make their film debut.
- 16 Apr 1938 Great-Britain recognizes Italian annexation of Abyssinia
- 18 Apr 1938 Headless Mad Butcher victim found in Cleveland
- 19 Apr 1938 42nd Boston Marathon won by Leslie Pawson of Rhode Island in 2:35:34.8.
- 23 Apr 1938 Sudeten Germans in Czechoslovakia demand self-government.
- 24 Apr 1938 Lindenheuvel soccer team forms.
- 26 Apr 1938 Austrian Jews required to register property above 5,000 Reichsmarks.
- 28 Apr 1938 King Zog of Albania marries Countess Geraldine of Hungary.
- 30 Apr 1938 Bradman scores 258 Aust vs. Worcs, 293 mins, 33 fours 1 five
- 02 May 1938 Ella Fitzgerald records A-Tisket, A-Tasket
- 03 May 1938 Vatican recognizes Francesco Franco as head of Spain.
- 04 May 1938 Douglas Hyde (a Protestant) becomes first president of Eire.
- 06 May 1938 Dutch writer Maurits Dekker sentenced to 50 days for "offending a friendly head of state" (Adolf Hitler).
- 07 May 1938 Dutch Minister of Justice Goseling calls fugitives of Nazi-Germany undesired strangers
- 09 May 1938 Kaarel Eenpalu becomes prime minister of Estonia.
- 10 May 1938 Banning speech on anti-fascism demonstration in Amsterdam
- 12 May 1938 Sandoz Labs manufactures LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide).
- 13 May 1938 US Congress passes the $1.156 billion Naval Expansion Bill.
- 14 May 1938 English soccer team beats Nazi-Germany, 6-3
- 15 May 1938 Paul-Henri Spak forms red coalition of Belgium.
- 16 May 1938 38 die in Terminal Hotel fire (Atlanta, Georgia, USA).
- 17 May 1938 Radio quiz show Information Please! debuts on NBC Blue Network.
- 20 May 1938 Czechoslovakia orders a partial mobilization of its armed forces along the German border.
- 21 May 1938 Matsuo Toi kills 30 people in a village in Okayama, Japan, in the Tsuyama massacre, the world's worst spree killing by an individual until 1982.
- 22 May 1938 Dodgers announce contracts to install lights at Ebbets Field
- 23 May 1938 Temporarily frustrated by the Czechoslovak mobilization and international diplomatic unity in the face of German demands over the Sudetenland, Hitler orders the Foreign Office to assure the Czechoslovaks that he has no demands on their territory. The world at large mistakenly believes the crisis is averted.
- 25 May 1938 Spanish Civil War: The bombing of Alicante takes place, with 313 deaths.
- 26 May 1938 House Committee on Un-American Activities begins work.
- 28 May 1938 Foundation for Tel Aviv harbor is laid.
- 30 May 1938 Poland who had its eyes on the Teschen region of Czechoslovakia was reassured by Rumania that it would block any attempt by the Soviet Union to come to the aid of the Czechs in the event of a Polish invasion.
- 01 Jun 1938 Protective baseball helmets 1st worn by batters
- 03 Jun 1938 German law on Entartete Art legalizes art robbery
- 04 Jun 1938 70th Belmont: James Stout aboard Pasteurized wins in 2:29.6
- 06 Jun 1938 Sigmund Freud arrives in London
- 07 Jun 1938 1st play telecast with original Broadway cast, Susan & God
- 09 Jun 1938 Second Chamber agrees to return Jews to Nazi-Germany
- 10 Jun 1938 Charlie Barnett makes 98 by lunch vs. Australia at Trent Bridge
- 11 Jun 1938 42nd US Golf Open: Ralph Guldahl shoots a 284 at Cherry Hills Denver
- 12 Jun 1938 June 18 ampndash The Roma and Sinti peoples in Germany and Austria are rounded up, beaten up and jailed.
- 13 Jun 1938 Jews injured and property destroyed in Przemyal Poland
- 14 Jun 1938 Dorothy Lathrop wins the first Caldecott Medal (kid books author).
- 15 Jun 1938 1st night game at Brooklyn Ebbets Field (Reds 6, Dodgers 0) as Cin Red Johnny Vander Meer hurls unprecedented 2nd consecutive no-hitter
- 16 Jun 1938 Jimmie Foxx is walked a record 6 consecutive times by Browns
- 17 Jun 1938 Japan declares war on China
- 18 Jun 1938 Babe Ruth is signed as a Dodgers coach for the rest of the season
- 19 Jun 1938 Olympian Flyer express train crashes in Montana, USA, killing 47.
- 22 Jun 1938 Joe Louis knocks out Max Schmeling at 2:04 of first round at Yankee Stadium in New York to retain heavyweight championship.
- 23 Jun 1938 Civil Aeronautics Authority (US) established
- 24 Jun 1938 500 ton meteorite lands near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
- 25 Jun 1938 A Tisket A Tasket by Ella Fitzgerald with Chick Webb hits #1
- 26 Jun 1938 Cin Red Lonny Frey hits 8 doubles in a doubleheader
- 28 Jun 1938 Queen Victoria ascends to British throne
- 30 Jun 1938 ''Action Comics #1'' is published, which is the first publication featuring the comic book character ''Superman''.
- 01 Jul 1938 58th Wimbledon Mens Tennis: Don Budge beats Henry Austin (61 60 63)
- 02 Jul 1938 51st Wimbledon Womens Tennis: Helen Moody beats Helen Jacobs (64 60)
- 03 Jul 1938 World speed record for a steam railway locomotive is set in England, by the Mallard, which reaches a speed of 126 miles per hour (203 km/h).
- 04 Jul 1938 1st game at Shribe Park, Phila; Braves beat Phillies 10-5
- 05 Jul 1938 The Non-Intervention Committee reaches an agreement to withdraw all foreign volunteers from the Spanish Civil War. The agreement is respected by most Republican foreign volunteers, notably by those from England and the United States, but is ignored by the governments of Germany and Italy.
- 06 Jul 1938 6th All Star Baseball Game: NL wins 4-1 at Crosley Field, Cincinnati
- 10 Jul 1938 Yankee Clipper completes 1st passenger flight over Atlantic
- 14 Jul 1938 Mussolini publishes anti-Jewish / African manifest
- 16 Jul 1938 21st PGA Championship: Paul Runyan at Shawnee Country Club - Shawnee-on-Del, Pennsylvania
- 17 Jul 1938 Douglas (Wrong Way) Corrigan leaves New York for LA, wound up in Ireland
- 18 Jul 1938 Douglas Wrong Way Corrigan arrives in Ireland-left New York for California
- 20 Jul 1938 The United States Department of Justice files suit in New York City against the motion picture industry charging violations of the Sherman Antitrust Act in regards to the studio system. The case would eventually result in a break-up of the industry in 1948.
- 21 Jul 1938 Paul Hindemith and Leonide Massines ballet premieres in London
- 22 Jul 1938 Britain rejected a proposal from its ambassador in Berlin, Nevile Henderson, for a four power summit on Czechoslovakia consisting of Britain, France, Germany and the U.S.S.R. London would under no circumstances accept the U.S.S.R. as a diplomatic partner.
- 23 Jul 1938 Bradman scores 103 in 178 minutes on a Headingley sticky, 3rd Test
- 24 Jul 1938 Instant coffee invented
- 25 Jul 1938 Jewish artisans not allowed in Germany
- 26 Jul 1938 1st radio broadcast of Young Widder Brown on NBC
- 28 Jul 1938 34,000-ton Cunard-White Star liner Mauretania launched at Birkenhead
- 29 Jul 1938 Comic strip Dennis the Menace, 1st appears
- 30 Jul 1938 Gen Metaxas names himself Premier of Greece
- 31 Jul 1938 Bulgaria signs a non-aggression pact with Greece and other states of Balkan Antanti (Turkey, Romania, Yugoslavia).
- 02 Aug 1938 1st test of a yellow baseball (Dodgers vs. Cardinals)
- 04 Aug 1938 Lord Runciman arrives in Prague to act as Neville Chamberlain's special envoy in the continuing Sudetenland disturbances.
- 05 Aug 1938 33rd Davis Cup: USA beats Australia in Philadelphia (3-2)
- 06 Aug 1938 The Looney Tunes animated short ''Porky amp Daffy'' is released.
- 07 Aug 1938 Leo Durocher, hits 2,000th Dodger home run
- 08 Aug 1938 The building of Mauthausen concentration camp begins.
- 10 Aug 1938 119 degrees F (48 degrees C), Pendleton, Oregon (state record).
- 11 Aug 1938 German commercial plane flies non-stop 25 hours from Berlin to New York.
- 17 Aug 1938 1st aircraft owned by Forest Service in service (Oakland)
- 18 Aug 1938 FDR dedicates Thousand Islands Bridge connecting US and Canada
- 20 Aug 1938 Lou Gehrig hits his 23rd career grand slam : a record that still stands.
- 21 Aug 1938 Italy bars all Jewish teachers in Public and High School
- 22 Aug 1938 Civil Aeronautics Authority (independent agency).
- 23 Aug 1938 English cricketer Len Hutton sets a world record for the highest individual Test innings of 364, during a Test match against Australia.
- 24 Aug 1938 England beat Australia by an innings and 579 runs at The Oval
- 26 Aug 1938 British leaders and Arabians fight in Palestine
- 27 Aug 1938 Yanks Monte Pearson no-hits Indians 13-0, DiMaggio hits 3 triples
- 28 Aug 1938 Mauthausen concentration camp opens in Austria
- 31 Aug 1938 5th NFL Chicago All-Star Game: All-Stars 28, Washington 16 (74,250)
- 01 Sep 1938 Mussolini cancels civil rights of Italian Jews
- 02 Sep 1938 Soviet Ambassador to Britain Ivan Maisky calls on Winston Churchill, to tell him that Soviet Foreign Commissar Maxim Litvinov has expressed to the French chargé d'affaires in Moscow that the Soviet Union is willing to fight over the territorial integrity of Czechoslovakia.
- 03 Sep 1938 1940 Olympic site changed from Tokyo Japan to Helsinki Finland
- 04 Sep 1938 Vainio Muinonen wins 2nd European marathoner (2:37:28.8)
- 05 Sep 1938 Chile: A group of youths affiliated with the fascist National Socialist Movement of Chile are assassinated in the Seguro Obrero massacre.
- 06 Sep 1938 Wilhelmina celebrates 40th anniversary jubilee as Dutch Queen
- 07 Sep 1938 ''The Times'' publishes a lead article which calls on Czechoslovakia to cede the Sudetenland to Germany.
- 09 Sep 1938 U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt disallows the popular interpretation of Bullitt's speech at a press conference at the White House. Roosevelt states it is quot100% wrongquot the U.S. would join a quotstop-Hitler blocquot under any circumstances, and makes it quite clear that in the event of German aggression against Czechoslovakia, the U.S. would remain neutral.
- 10 Sep 1938 Hermann Göring, in a speech at Nuremberg, calls the Czechs a quotmiserable pygmy racequot who are quotharassing the human race.quot That same evening, Edvard Beneš, President of Czechoslovakia, makes a broadcast in which he appeals for calm.
- 12 Sep 1938 Adolph Hitler demands self-determination for Sudeten Germans in Czech
- 13 Sep 1938 The followers of Konrad Henlein begin an armed revolt against the Czechoslovak government in Sudetenland. Martial law is declared and after much bloodshed on both sides order is temporarily restored. Neville Chamberlain personally sends a telegram to Hitler urgently requesting that they both meet.
- 15 Sep 1938 John Cobb sets world auto speed record at 350.2 MPH (lasts one day).
- 17 Sep 1938 52nd US Womens Tennis: Alice Marble beats Nancye Wynne Bolton (60 63)
- 18 Sep 1938 Chicago Bears beat Green Bay Packers 2-0
- 21 Sep 1938 Hurricane (winds 183 MPH) in New England (Long Island, New York, New Jersey) kills 500-700, wrecking tens of millions of dollars in property.
- 23 Sep 1938 British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain sends Adolf Hitler's demands to Czechoslovakia.
- 24 Sep 1938 Alice Marble wins her 2nd singles US tennis title
- 26 Sep 1938 Hitler issues ultimatum to Czech government, demanding Sudenten Land
- 27 Sep 1938 British ocean liner Queen Elizabeth, launches at Clydebank Scotland
- 28 Sep 1938 Dutch Premier Colijn sends radio message No war coming
- 29 Sep 1938 1st archival course is offered at Columbia University in New York City
- 30 Sep 1938 British Premier Chamberlain arrives in Munich
- 01 Oct 1938 Cubs clinch NL pennant
- 02 Oct 1938 Indian Bob Feller strikes out record 18 Tigers (Chester Laabs 5 times)
- 04 Oct 1938 The Republican forces in the Spanish Civil War begin withdrawing their foreign volunteers from combat as agreed on July 5.
- 06 Oct 1938 Yanks Lefty Gomez sets record of 6 World Series wins without a loss
- 07 Oct 1938 Germany demands all Jewish passports stamped with the letter J.
- 09 Oct 1938 A Copland and E Lorings ballet Billy the Kid, premieres in Chicago
- 14 Oct 1938 Nazis plan Jewish ghettos for all major cities
- 15 Oct 1938 Robert Sherwoods Abe Lincoln in Illinois, premieres in New York City
- 16 Oct 1938 Winston Churchill, in a broadcast address to the United States, condemns the Munich Agreement as a defeat and calls upon America and western Europe to prepare for armed resistance against Hitler.
- 18 Oct 1938 The German government expels 12,000 Polish Jews living in Germany the Polish government accepts 4,000 and refuses admittance to the remaining 8,000, who are forced to live in the no-man's land on the German-Polish frontier.
- 21 Oct 1938 Japanese troops capture Canton, main southern China port.
- 22 Oct 1938 Chester Carlson demonstrates 1st Xerox copying machine
- 24 Oct 1938 US forbids child labor in factories
- 25 Oct 1938 Japanese troops occupies Hankou andWuhan
- 26 Oct 1938 Du Pont named its new synthetic fiber nylon
- 27 Oct 1938 DuPont announces its new synthetic fiber will be called "nylon".
- 28 Oct 1938 Farewell parade of International Brigade (Barcelona)
- 30 Oct 1938 Orson Welles broadcasts his radio play of H. G. Wells' The War of the Worlds, causing a nationwide (USA) panic. About a million radio listeners believe that a real Martian invasion is underway.
- 01 Nov 1938 German Colonel-General Gerd von Runstedt retires
- 02 Nov 1938 Jimmie Foxx wins his 3rd AL MVP
- 04 Nov 1938 At a public meeting in Epping, Winston Churchill narrowly survives an attempt by fellow Conservative and constituent Sir Colin Thornton-Kemsley to remove him from Parliament.
- 06 Nov 1938 3 DiMaggio brothers play together for 1st time, charity all star game
- 08 Nov 1938 1st black woman legislator, Crystal Bird Fauset of Philadelphia
- 09 Nov 1938 Crystal Night - Germans break windows owned by Jews
- 10 Nov 1938 8.3 earthquake shakes East of Shumagin Islands, Alaska
- 11 Nov 1938 German and Austrian Jewish suffer 1 billion Mark damage in Nazi
- 12 Nov 1938 French Finance Minister Paul Reynaud brings into effect a series of laws aiming at improving French productivity (thus aiming to undo the economic weaknesses which led to Munich), and undoes most of the economic and social laws of the Popular Front.
- 14 Nov 1938 Dutch DC3 crashes at Schiphol, 6 die
- 15 Nov 1938 Farewell Parade of International Brigades in Barcelona
- 16 Nov 1938 K B Regiment refuses round-table conference in East-India
- 17 Nov 1938 Italy passes their own version of the anti-Jewish Nuremberg laws.
- 18 Nov 1938 Trade union members elect John L. Lewis as the first president of the Congress of Industrial Organizations.
- 20 Nov 1938 First documented anti-Semitic remarks over US radio (by Father Coughlin).
- 21 Nov 1938 Nazi forces occupy western Czech and declared them German citizens
- 24 Nov 1938 National Semi-Pro Basketball Congress authorizes yellow basketball.
- 25 Nov 1938 French Foreign Minister Georges Bonnet informs Léon Noël, the French Ambassador to Poland, that France should find an excuse for terminating the 1921 Franco-Polish alliance.
- 29 Nov 1938 Mayor Oud of Rotterdam forbids soccer match between Neth-Germany
- 30 Nov 1938 Fascist coup in Romania, fails
- 01 Dec 1938 School bus and train collide in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA.
- 06 Dec 1938 117 Spanish knights under Captain Piet Laros return to the Netherlands
- 07 Dec 1938 W9XZY broadcasts facsimile of the Saint Louis Post-Dispatch by radio.
- 08 Dec 1938 Highest temperature for December in US recorded in La Mesa, California.
- 10 Dec 1938 Ruth Fuller Sasaki, Zen teacher, Rinzai line, enters Zen priesthood.
- 11 Dec 1938 New York Giants win NFL championship.
- 13 Dec 1938 The Holocaust: The Neuengamme concentration camp opens in the Bergedorf district of Hamburg, Germany.
- 14 Dec 1938 Will Harridge is elected to a 10-year-term as American League (baseball) president.
- 15 Dec 1938 Groundbreaking begins for Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC.
- 16 Dec 1938 Adolf Hitler institutes the Cross of Honor of the German Mother
- 17 Dec 1938 Utrecht Central Station destroyed by fire
- 20 Dec 1938 Vladimir K Zworykin (Pennsylvania, USA) receives patent on the Iconoscope TV system.
- 23 Dec 1938 Discovery of the first modern coelacanth in South Africa.
- 27 Dec 1938 A massive avalanche of snow hits a construction worker dormitory site in Kurobe, Japan, killing 87.
- 29 Dec 1938 Construction on Lake Washington Floating Bridge, in Seattle, Washington, begins.
- 30 Dec 1938 Electronic television system patented (V K Zworykin)
- 31 Dec 1938 The 8th International Conference of American States issues the Declaration of Lima, that the American countries agree to stand united against any threat.